“Going in where?” Was the reply I got when I told Matthew I what my plan was.
It was a fair question because I still hadn’t entirely thought out my plan, all I knew was that I had to get out there and help Nick. We were by no means law enforcement but we had no idea what state Nick was in and with the real law enforcement an unknown factor I just couldn’t leave Nick.
It may have been false bravado, or it may even have been blind stupidity, but because of the way the two dark silhouettes moved in the flickering light in the old comms tower I assumed they were both supervising Nick who was sitting on the floor at their feet. Like I say it could have been blind stupidity but it stood to reason, my reason, that there was no other men around, other than the guy taking a leak near Nick’s truck and those two men upstairs both of who seemed to regularly look down at where I expected Nick was.
The one thing I knew that was against us a bit was the same thing that was helping is, the large bright full moon. We would be able to walk in the shadows of the few bushes and small trees, but we’d also cast our own shadow and if we got too close to the men our own shadows could give us away.
“I’m still working on it, but I have to do something.” I replied. I took a breath and thought for a moment, then started speaking in the same low tone we’d been getting accustomed too since arriving at the darkened airport. With a little thought I then started to make a plan “I know you are not going to like this but hear me out.”
“There is no need for both of us going up there an getting caught.”
“I would hope neither of us get caught.” Matthew’s response was more nerves than anything else which was fair enough I was nervous too.
“I do too, but if both of us go up and we both get caught we’re screwed. If only I go up and something happens we’ve still got you as back up and you can run for help…”
“I’m not going to leave you out here.” Matthew replied quickly, bless him and his brotherly love!
“…or come and help. Is what I was going to say.”
“Ok, that makes as much sense as anything else. But why should you go and not me?”
I didn’t really have to think about that answer. “Because I got us into this. Besides if these monkeys are just drug runners from some small island in Indonesia, then the chances are they’ll just see me as some chick looking stupidly for her boyfriend.”
“And you think you can pull off being just some chick?” Matthew asked again trying to calm his nerves a bit.
“I may not even have to,” I thought about doing my dumb blonde routine to remind Matthew how I could pull of such a move but decided the time and place wasn’t right. “Even if they don’t buy the dumb chick with a gun routine they’ll go easier on me than you.” It was a bit of a lie I had no idea what such idiots would do but I was hoping to protect my brother a little bit and I was hoping he’d buy the excuse. “I’ll surrender my gun quickly if caught, I’ll scream loudly like a city girl seeing a spider, to let you know and if they ask I’ll tell them I came in alone looking for my boyfriend. My scream will be your indication to run back to the Beast…”
“I’m n…” Matthew interrupted.
I interrupted right back just like we were still kids at the dinner table fighting for the attention of our parental units. “…or make your move to help us.”
For the next few minutes Matthew and I discussed my plan, which wasn’t much of a plan but it was all we had. I knew Matthew didn’t agree with me storming the fortress, so to speak, but there wasn’t many other choices and I wasn’t going to leave Nick without help. I also wasn’t going to let Matthew put himself in danger while I stood back and watched.
In the end what we decided to do was for me to head down the right hand side of the runway, the side that would lead me to the comms tower while Matthew would head down the left hand side until he was level with Nick’s cop truck and hopefully not spotted by the man standing near there. Once we got down to those positions Matthew would figure out what to do with his man and I’d figure out what to do with the comms tower, hopefully both of us would succeed.
We set off on our merry way, (well I can dream), both with backpacks on and guns in hand. I’d only gone about ten metres before I started to loose Matthew in the darkness, the moon may have been full but the darkness was helping us quite a bit. Because I knew roughly where Matthew was headed I did catch glimpses of his silhouette a few times but for the most part I was busy trying to keep my own shadow low and follow the path I’d chosen in the hope of not being seen.
I moved slow and low, not slithering across the ground like you see army men do in the movies, I’m not sure I could do that if I tried anyway, but I was as low as could be. Most of the time I was side stepping, kind of like a weird looking frog, I didn’t want to keep popping up because I knew from my animal hunting days that it’s the quick moving shadow above, around and even under the trees and structures that gave something away in the dark.
I was about thirty metres away from the end of the last remaining cover I knew could rely on when I stopped to take a few breaths, it’s hard work walking in a crouched position with your guts crunched up and your knees constantly bent. As I inhaled deeply I saw Matthew for the last time as he ducked behind a large rock, he was about as far from Nick’s cop truck as I was from the end of my cover and he was laying low. Whether he could see me and was waiting for my next move I didn’t know at the time but I also wasn’t going to call out and ask him.
One more breath and I started moving again. When I got to the end of the line of shrubs I stopped again. I couldn’t see Matthew, I couldn’t see the man who we’d last seen near the truck but I could see more of what was going on inside the comms tower.
Previous Outback Rescue story here.