Enduring on the Lake

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Chapter 24


The pounding would not stop.  I cracked my eyes open and realized no matter how it might feel the pounding wasn’t just in my head.  I glared at the clock and saw it was only 3 am.  I wobbled a bit as I got out of bed and then wobbled even more to get to the door.  I stopped along the way to get the small pistol out of my nightstand drawer.  Finally at the door I heard crying. 

“Syd!  Syd!!” 

Crap!  “Max?!” 

I through the door open with my gun drawn, jerked him in and then slammed the door shut and through the bolt.  I fell to the floor beside the wet, muddy boy and said, “Max!  What’s wrong?!  How did you get here?!” 

“I ran!  Terrance, I don’t know … I was in bed and then I saw him over me and then I don’t know and then I woke up and heard those people.  I ran and … and … I didn’t know where I was until I saw the rooster on your cabin.” 

“Wait … you saw …” 

“The moon is out.  It stopped raining.” 

“It’s … it’s been raining?  My head is killing me.  We gotta call Zane.”  I fumbled for my cellphone. 

Max whimpered.  “Hurry Syd!  They’re coming.  They’ll get us, I know they will.” 

“Bull crap they will.  Go down to the basement.  Get under the stairs in that storage closet and lock it from the inside.” 

“No!  I’m staying with you.” 

I didn’t argue with him.  My cellphone wouldn’t work very well down in the basement so I dialed Zane’s number and walked over to the top of the cellar stairs.   

Sleepy and just a shade grumpy Zane answered, “Huh?” 

“Wake up Zane.  I need you to wake up right now.  I think I’ve lost some time someplace but Max is here at the cabin.  He says Terrance took him from the house.” 

“The F*** you say!”   

Zane must wake up real fast because he went storming through the house and then started cursing a blue streak.  He yelled for Josh, Junior and probably anyone else within earshot.   

“Zane!” 

“I’m coming.” 

“No, listen.  I … I think … I was sick after leaving church and I’ve been sleeping so I may not make the best sense but Max said that he wound up in some house set back from the lake.  He didn’t know where he was at until he saw the weather vane on the cabin but he’s scared to death that those people are following him.  I’m taking him down to the cellar … you know where I’m talking about ‘cause Daddy must have showed you.  I’m locking him in.  Then I’m calling the Sheriff, Lawrence, and Uncle Red.  And when everyone gets here I’m going to have a shotgun and I am going to be twitchy.  Understand?” 

“You get right down in that …” 

I couldn’t hear what he would have said because the door started pounding again and I heard Terrance yelling, “I know he’s in there.  You can’t keep me from Max.  He’s mine!” 

I growled, “No he isn’t.”  To Zane I asked, “You heard?  Call the cops for me will you?” 

The pounding on the door was getting pretty frantic and all sorts of foul language was filling the air.  I walked to the coffee table and slid out a hidden drawer and took out my personal shotgun from the space it occupied.  I deliberately loaded it with slugs rather than shot while telling Max, “Go downstairs now Max.” 

“But …” 

“Now.  You found your way to me and you trust me to keep them from getting you.  And that’s what I’m going to do.  But it isn’t something I want you to see.  OK?” 

“Syd …” 

“Git right now,” I told him in a tone I knew he would recognize from Zane when he was topped off and not in the mood for more. 

Max swallowed then disappeared down the stairs.  No one was getting in the cellar.  The one outside window was only about eight inches high.  The glass in the frame had wire in it.  Then there were iron rebar on the outside like a cage and a steel shutter on the inside.  One of the projects in the works was to reinforce the front door and replace the old crossbar that has been there since Dr. Pepper was an intern but since it had kept out more than one bear over the years I was hoping it would keep out one drug-crazy man. 

Make that more than one drug-crazy man.  “Whooooweeeee, I smell me some girl child in there.  C’mon out Honey, we won’t hurt you.  We just want to talk, maybe have some fun.  You don’t have to play if you don’t want to but we do need to talk.” 

I didn’t bother answering.  Daddy said when faced with the enemy not to bother wasting your breath trying to talk them out of anything because 99.9% of the time you wouldn’t be able to and it would just be a waste of your air.  Plus, not responding sometimes rattled them worse.  The front door was the only weak spot.  The shutters were all down both upstairs and down.  The cellar was secure.  I just needed to make sure that if they did manage to get through the door that they received a portion of what their actions warranted. 

Part of the problem was that I wasn’t twenty-one.  I could get a license to carry a handgun until I was.  But I didn’t need to have a license to carry a long gun … per state law.  While the fools outside were trying to talk me into responding I put my hand gun in the coffee table and put a lock on it.  Might seem foolish to some but this way I could say that even had I picked it up it wouldn’t have done me any good.   

“I can hear you moving around in there.  I want my boy!” 

“Yeah, give him his boy.  Or … or we’ll call the cops.  That’s right, he told us all about how you’ve been out to kidnap Maxey.  Now you’ve gone and done it.” 

I sighed.  Idiots.  Did they think I didn’t have a phone or what?  Speaking of phones I picked up the phone and dialed Lawrence.  Turns out he was already on his way.  I explained the situation and they decided to come in quiet and surprise them to see how many they could catch.  If they came in with their lights flashing and everything else all they would have done is scramble.  The Sheriff department around here had just started to require their deputies to wear those cameras that recorded all of their interactions while on duty. 

It was nerve wracking waiting for the cops to arrive.  It seemed like it took forever even though it only took the first one ten minutes to get there because he had been answering a call on the other side of the lake.  Lawrence called and told me to stay inside and to go down to the cellar until he called me up.  And that’s what I did.  By the time Max’s family arrived it was pretty much at the clean-up phase. 

2 comments:

  1. Come on Kathy we N-e-e-d details......Oh mercy you write a good tale.

    ReplyDelete