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Wednesday, 25 March 2009

The Rising - Chapter 115: 'Give Me A Minute'

My body jerked and I was awake. I looked up and saw everyone standing around me. Everyone.

Jane!’ I said with surprise and relief in my voice. I got up and jumped out of the car. I tried to embrace her but she reeled backwards, like she didn’t want to touch me.

What’s up?’ I asked.

Look at the back seat,’ she said with a look of horror on her face.

I looked at the spot where I had been lying. It looked like someone had been killed. Glass was strewn all over the seat, which was soaked through with blood. My blood. I bent down and checked my face in the car’s wing mirror. Not a scratch.

I felt the spot on my back where I had crashed through some poor commuter’s windscreen. Nothing.

What happened to you?’ Jane asked.

I got in a fight. A few fights, actually. Captain Stein is dead.’

Becky walked over to me and introduced herself without any prompt.

Hello, Tom. My name is Becky Clarkson. I used to work for the World Health Organisation. I’ve been working with your friends today.’

We shook hands. ‘Pleased to meet you, Becky. So what are we doing here?’

We’re going to exchange all the papers and samples we have on the primary treatment for the doctor’s wife.’

But doesn’t that mean that the vampires will have all the research, all the work you’ve done for The Brotherhood?’

That’s right,’ said Doctor Owen, who looked very tired, ‘But there’s nothing else we can do.’

Hey Doc, did you know someone else is using your treatment?’

Did you come across the Virex syringes as well?’ Becky asked.

Yes. I took two and gave them to a guy and his kid on the plane.’

Did they use them?’

I think so, yes.’

Before or after they were infected?’

Before, but only he was infected.’

What happened on the plane?’ Jane asked.

They gassed everyone and injected them with vampire blood. The crash was supposed to look like an accident but the bodies were taken off the plane almost as soon as it went down.’

Where were they taking the bodies?’

I don’t know. Skinner was staying with them. Have you heard from him?’

No. I assumed he was with you.’

The whole situation was disorganised and confusing. After a day of running around, it didn’t feel like we were any closer to finding out what was going on in this city or how we could stop it.

Doctor Owen picked up a medical case and started to walk towards the mall. ‘Can we go?’ he asked.

Wait,’ Becky said, ‘Let me go on ahead. Give me a minute to get through the mall, find a spot and get set up. Jane, put this in your ear.’

Becky threw an earpiece at Jane then ran to the back of the car, picked up a black holdall. She threw it over her shoulder then ran towards the entrance when she saw the coast was clear.

How are you doing, Dave?’ Jane asked.

A hell of a lot better than I would have been if it wasn’t for this guy,’ he said and pointed to me, ‘Last thing I remember was getting punched out by a couple of bloodsuckers, then I woke up in the back seat of the car with this son of a bitch behind the wheel. I’ve got a bad feeling about this place, though.’

Why’s that?’ I asked.

Some of the guys who attacked me work here. In fact, everyone who was staying at that hotel works here and they were all vampires.’

Try not to worry,’ Doctor Owen said, ‘We’ll be in and out of there. Has she been gone a minute yet? Let’s go.’

We all picked up bags and cases and made our way into the mall.

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