More silence as the Kombi trundled along Main North Road. Was this the trend for the road trip? Long awkward silences. Two brothers sitting side by side, itching to punch each other. Liesel itched to lay hands on Fox who squashed himself against the car door. And Minna opposite Günter, tried not to make too many calf-eyes at him, as well as trying her best to not nibble her nails. Was this what grown-up young people do for fun? Where was the excitement? The pillow fights? The Coca-Cola? Things go better with Coke, so the commercials say. And things in this mobile can did require better going.
A man dressed in brown walked on the roadside. He hunched over and stuck out his thumb.
Fox slowed down the van. ‘Oh, a hitch-hiker. Why don’t we pick him up?’
‘Are you crazy? No way!’ Liesel batted his arm.
Fox eased the Kombi to a stop. ‘He looks like he needs a lift. What the heck.’
‘What’re you doing?’ Liesel raised her tone.
But Fox continued to pull over to the side of the road.
There’s this WP prompt here to list my top 5 grocery items. So, here’s mine: Sour dough bread, milk, super berry juice, crackers, and chocolate. No need to buy meat, we buy it bulk, and have it delivered straight from the farm. And vegetables we grow in our garden. Eggs come from a friend who has chooks.
Now, when I’m not shopping for bread and milk, I’ve been working on the second edition of my first novel, Mission of the Unwilling.
If you are tired of the mundane and are wanting space adventure, and the mischief and mayhem that alien cockroach Boris creates…
Avoiding Monica’s Playroom, (I thought Maggie might be lurking there), I headed for the Driver room. Would Günter zap back to a Grey and be piloting there? Or would just his apes be in the Driver room? I approached the junction where the right passage led to that room of monitors and Günter. I sensed someone sliding along the wall behind me and looked back.
A lump lodged in my throat. Not the Grey Nurse again!
‘Where is he?’ She tugged at my collar choking me. ‘You go to him—get him. I want him.’ Does she ever give up?
‘If you’re that desperate, find him yourself.’ I veered the other way, ducked around the next corner, and lost her.
I headed for the Engine room. I had to see John and talk to him about all my troubles. And warn him Boris might be back. What I liked about John was he didn’t talk much; he just sat there and listened.
I entered the maze of towering machines, pumps, and raw veins of bound wires. Anxious, at every sound of a swish behind me, I checked my back. Every wheeze, and I slammed myself up against the closest engine cowling, flattening myself for cover. I reached John’s small office and lurched through the entrance.
Hands gripped around my eyes. Darkness, even darker.
‘We must leave here,’ a deep voice said. ‘Now.’
‘It is not safe; there has been an accident.’
‘Günter, is that you?’
He pushed me, guiding me. Something oily underfoot made me slip. He held me. Then carried me out.
In the light of the corridor, I blinked. Günter appeared pale. His forehead was covered in beads of perspiration. And as he held me, he trembled.
My shoe stuck to the floor. I lifted my foot. On the tiles, a bloodstained shoe print.
‘W-what’s going on?’ I asked.
‘I-it is J-John…’ Günter rasped. ‘I-didn’t want you…to see…’
‘John? Is he…no, not John…he can’t be…’ I moved to enter the engineering room.
‘No danger.’ Günter pulled me back. ‘He is…he is gone.’