Protecting Bedlam: Reading, Writing, & Rampaging Part 3

Previously on the latest tale of Cassidy & Lloyd.

(If you want, buy their previous rampages for $2 by clicking on the covers below.)

Cover by Jon Hunsinger

Cover by Jon Hunsinger

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Creeping out of the elevator, Cassidy and Lloyd stay low as they approach the solitary guard booth. They can see a uniformed man inside, his attention on the screens that show every angle of the garage. Stacks of cardboard boxes help them hide, some of them leaking ice cream that the pair have to walk through. A passing car causes them to freeze when the headlights strike them, but the driver is too busy checking the glove compartment to notice. The bumper grazes a parked limo, which causes the guard to lean out of a window and curse at the top of his lungs. Using the distraction to their advantage, they hurry across the open area and press themselves against the short wall of the booth. Cassidy signals for Lloyd to crawl around the corner while she takes a peek, her keen eyes scanning the monitors for her jeep. Her view is blocked by the guard returning to his seat, so she ducks out of sight and follows her friend. She finds him lurking by the open doorway, but he holds up a finger to his lips to and points over his shoulder with an impish smirk on his face.

“Can’t believe I have to do this shift on my own,” the guard mutters as he opens a bag of nachos. The door creaks as it opens, but the man merely sighs and continues watching the monitors. “About time you showed up, Reuben. Then again, I’m surprised you bothered to show up. How do you stay employed or even alive if you keep ditching your shifts? Keep this up and you’ll be sent somewhere else where people won’t stand for this shit. Honestly, I’m surprised the boss didn’t fire you after the time you declared that you hated your job. Kind of quiet tonight, huh? Did I say something that offended you, Reuben?”

“For some reason I really want to find a kosher deli,” Lloyd says before jamming a pencil into the guard’s temple. He eases the body into the chair while waving for Cassidy to get into the booth. “Our supplies, clothes, and weapons are in the cage over there, but the jeep is up on the third floor. Too much of a pain to carry everything, so one of us should wait here and get everything out. I volunteer to go since I’m less likely to make out with the car when I get behind the wheel.”

“That was one time and I was welcoming her home . . . from an oil change,” Cassidy mutters as she watches Lloyd rush out with the keys. Instead of searching for the cage key, she grabs a small sledgehammer and trudges over to their gear. “The guy convinces an idiot to get mauled by a bear and he thinks he’s in charge. I could have done that if I wasn’t focused more on my nipples getting zapped and torn off. Wait a second. When the hell did Lloyd get smarter than me? I broke that maniac out with a genius plan on my own and I’ve had many more over the last two years. Have I gotten lazy or is he making me stupider?”

After three solid blows, the lock falls to the floor and Cassidy throws the door open to grab whatever is in reach. Knowing what is important, she searches for her pistols and Lloyd’s machete before pulling out boxes of supplies. She does not stop at taking their gear and claims whatever items catches her eyes, including a stack of music CD’s and a katana that is probably more for show than use. Picking up a small crate, she shakes it a little and shivers at what she thinks is inside. Sniffing at the sealed container, the mercenary places it next to the guard booth and gently pats it before hurrying back to the cage. Cassidy is carrying her loaded sniper rifle when the elevator dings and the doors open to let a squad of guards into the garage. She whirls around to open fire on the unprepared men and women, three of them getting knocked into the wall by the powerful impacts. Hearing squealing tires, she puts the larger weapon down and draws her pistols to keep their enemies hiding behind the boxes. Knowing she is trapped in the open, the mercenary shoots through some of the flimsy barriers to hit the guards, which stops them from attempting to move forward or retaliating.

“You call for a cab?” Lloyd asks as he stops the blue jeep. The engine is kept running as he gets out and starts jamming their gear into the vehicle. “They left the machineguns attached to the bubble, which was nice of them. I didn’t find the extra ammunition, but they left the all of the grenades. Don’t tell me they broke our satellite phone. Bart is going to make us pay big for another one of those. You want to fight or drive?”

“Get behind the wheel since you don’t like guns!” Cassidy shouts while more guards come out of the stairwell. Both of them scramble into the armored jeep, which protects them from the first hail of bullets. “We need to get out of here, so head southeast. That should get us into Arizona and the wilderness will be our friend. Looks like we have a full tank of gas, which is the only good news that we need. Drive like you’re playing a video game, Lloyd, because I want destruction in our wake. Promise that I’ll give you a nice tune up and waxing when we get to safety, baby.”

“You got it, but I kind of like my hairy legs.”

As Lloyd pulls away from the guards, Cassidy grabs one of the small machineguns that are folded into the ceiling. Protected by the bulletproof dome, she pokes the weapon through a hole and opens fire at the crate she left near the booth. The explosive liquid inside erupts into a wave of flames that drives their enemies back to the elevator and helps them get a head start. It is a short-lived victory as they race for the exit, which is swiftly blocked by heavily armed police cars. Lloyd turns onto the ramp to head for the second floor while Cassidy strafes the vehicles in the hopes of hitting their tires. She hears a few pops as they turn the corner, which is peppered by gunfire from the cops. With the engine roaring, they drive across the garage and keep their eyes peeled for an ambush. A white van pulls into their path, but the battering ram on the front of the jeep easily knocks it aside. It is enough to slow them down, which makes the pair worry that they have made a mistake. As they round another turn, the escapees hear people on foot coming up the stairs in the distance, some of the scrambling to set up a mortar.

Before they can get a shot off, Lloyd stomps on the gas to crash through their ranks and barrel into the outer wall. With them being on the ground level, the battering ram shatters the cheap concrete and subpar rebar with only a few unnerving shudders that run along the entire body. Catching a few feet of air, the vehicle soars over the unkempt lawn, skims the top of the hedges, and lands on the Las Vegas strip. A fleet of police cars greet them, but those behind the wheel are surprised by the unexpected appearance. Their hesitation is long enough for Lloyd to regain control of the swerving jeep and slip between two trucks. Seeing the small army that is about to chase them, the serial killer drives over the divider and takes his chances with the oncoming traffic.

“Like we needed more of a challenge?” Cassidy asks while they veer around the oncoming vehicles. It is impossible for her to get a clear shot, so she settles for unleashing small bursts to keep their enemies at bay. “On the plus side, I don’t think these are real cops. Custer probably put his own people in the uniforms and vehicles since the originals were disbanded soon after the collapse. That means we can take them out with no guilt.”

“I love those chocolate coins!” Lloyd replies with a maniacal laugh. He moves the jeep behind a truck before spinning around and heading in the opposite direction. “Sorry about the music being slow and whiny. Didn’t think we had the time to search for something better or put in a CD. Do you want me to take side streets or stay on the main road? I only took a quick look at a map of this place once since I never thought I’d be here. By the way, I don’t plan on accepting one-way streets as part of my reality.”

“Take whatever route you want.”

“I don’t think we can drive them off like the other times.”

“Yeah, we are in the bastard’s lair, so a full fight isn’t smart.”

“Do you have any ideas?”

“Just drive and don’t slow down.”

Lloyd goes as fast as he can while Cassidy pops a pill to steady her nerves and pulls out a box of grenades. Opening the windows, she watches for storm drains and carefully throws a live explosive whenever one comes into view. Most of her tosses hit the ground, but the green orb always bounces into the steam-spewing holes. Even though the drugs made her calm, the mercenary holds her breath every time until the grenade falls beneath the street. It does not take long before the street jumps and cracks, the damage stopping all of the other cars from moving. The jeep continues along the strip while sewage erupts behind it and splatters against the buildings. People on the sidewalk scream as they run from the flying waste, their desire to escape causing them to rush in every direction, including in the path of the cops. Vehicles flip to avoid hitting the innocent bystanders, the sudden turns and stops more dangerous due to the slick street. Passing a small fountain, Cassidy chucks a grenade into the water and watches as the marble is cracked. The foamy liquid flows over the sidewalk as the pipes burst and send a bubbling geyser into the air. Another explosion can be heard behind them, a power transformer having fallen into the flammable sewage. The fire spreads along the street and drives everyone into the buildings, most shattering the windows to get away as quickly as possible. Chaos consumes the entire strip with nobody sure of what to do, except for a scowling figure in a penthouse who can only watch as the blue jeep disappears down a side street.

 

About Charles Yallowitz

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn't working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. 'Legends of Windemere' is his first series, but it certainly won't be his last.
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10 Responses to Protecting Bedlam: Reading, Writing, & Rampaging Part 3

  1. Great escape, Charles. Long may it last.

    Like

  2. Excellent. Had me on the edge of my seat.

    Like

  3. Playing catch up today. Always nice to have some advanced ordinance available.

    Like

  4. Pingback: Protecting Bedlam: Best Savages for the Job Part 1 | Legends of Windemere

  5. A lot of action and a lot of grenades. Pretty fun to read

    Like

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