Watching the End of the World – Chapter 16

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]Caleb picked up his phone out of the dirt and tapped a button. The music cut off. Silence, except for the crackle of flames.

Tamara was staring at the burning jet, tears running down her face. “How are we going to get home now?”

“Holy shit, I’m bleeding,” Caleb said, touching his face. Tamara ignored him, continuing to stare at the jet.

Akila came to the edge of the roof and looked down. Maha and Jenna were flanking her. “Is everyone okay down there? Is anyone hit?”

“No, we’re good,” Santiago replied. “Our ride home is fucked, though.” Jordynn was standing beside him but she seemed paralyzed.

“What about the flight crew?” Jenna asked. “Were they on the plane?”

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 15

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]The Toyota pickup came barreling onto the runway, one man behind the wheel, the other in the back. The one in the back was manning the fifty-caliber machine gun mounted there. He started firing before the truck even stopped, the heavy slugs tearing into the side of the warehouse.

The flight crew scattered, running behind the jet for cover. Caleb and Tamara pulled apart, gaping at the scene. Santiago leapt to his feet, knocking Jordynn down as he did so. He grabbed his rifle, which was leaning against his chair, and fired at the truck, but his shots went wild.

Nate saw the man in the back of the pickup start to turn the heavy weapon in their direction as the truck slid to a stop, turned sideways to them. Suddenly realizing how terribly exposed he was, he skidded to a stop and turned back to the warehouse, knowing there was no way he could get there in time.

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 14

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]After Omisha had stopped crying and gone to her room to lie down, Nate went back outside. What Omisha had told him had rattled him. He needed to talk to someone. He needed someone to tell him that Omisha was just overreacting. He’d considered turning the TV on and seeing for himself, but somehow he didn’t think he could face news like that alone.

Caleb and Tamara were still dancing, though now they were slow dancing, wrapped in a tight clinch, even though the song was fast. Tamara was smoking a cigarette. Santiago was lying on his towel and Jordynn was rubbing lotion on his back. One of the liquor bottles was lying on its side, empty.

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 13

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]Nate and Tony walked into the warehouse just as Caleb pulled the tarp off a stack of boxes that were clear at the back and let out a whoop. “Santiago! Take a look at this!”

Santiago hurried over and whistled. “We got a whole liquor store here. Rum, whiskey, vodka, you name it.” Then his voice grew excited. “I don’t believe it. A whole case of Macallan.”

“What is that?” Caleb asked, pulling down a case of tequila. “Scotch?”

“Not just Scotch,” Santiago replied, taking a bottle out and cradling it. “The best Scotch.”

“Scotch is disgusting,” Tamara said. “But I’m all about vodka and I see a case of Stoli. Get it down for me, Caleb.”

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 12

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]Akila led them outside and lined them up on the runway. Tamara was holding her rifle casually, so that it was pointed at Caleb, who was standing next to her. Akila walked over and pushed the barrel of her gun so that it was pointing at the ground. “Rule number one, people: your gun’s always loaded. Even when you’re sure it isn’t. Don’t point it at anyone unless you mean to shoot them.” Then she went through a few basics, where the safety was, the importance of not having their fingers on the triggers until they were ready to shoot. She showed them how to insert and remove the clip, how to check the chamber to see if there was a round in it.

“Take care of your weapon. These weapons are very reliable, but they are automatic weapons. If you get a bunch of dirt and crud in them they might refuse to work right when you need them the most. Don’t lay them down on the ground.”

After a half hour of this, Santiago said, “This is getting boring. I want to shoot something. When do we get bullets?”

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 10

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]“Bingo!” Caleb yelled as they walked back into the warehouse. He reached into a big wooden crate that he and Santiago had pried the lid off of and pulled out an automatic rifle. Santiago took another one out and worked the action, cocking the gun. The weapon was pointing carelessly at Caleb as he did it and the click of the hammer falling as he pulled the trigger was loud.

“What the hell are you doing?” Akila exclaimed, running over and snatching the gun out of Santiago’s hands.

“Hey! What’s your problem?”

“You.” Without looking at the rifle she released the clip, which she caught and put in her pocket, then levered the action to make sure the chamber was empty. “You pointed your weapon at Caleb and pulled the trigger. Are you a complete idiot?”

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Watching the End of the World – Chapter 9

 

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]“That’s a machine gun,” Caleb said. Nate began backing away. This wasn’t right at all.

The men jumped out of the truck, shouting something angrily in a foreign language and gesturing at them.

“What are they saying?” Tamara asked, moving in close to Caleb.

“I don’t think we’re supposed to be here,” Jenna said. They were all backing up now, except for Santiago, who stood facing the men with his arms hanging at his sides. He looked somehow like a man preparing for a gunfight.

Then one of the men pulled a pistol from a holster and raised it. The other one followed and they began shooting.

“They’re shooting at us!” Jordynn cried.

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