Chapter 56

Walker Chapter 56

Copyright 2011 Banzai Ben and Amazing Anastasia

 

Flashback – Ben – Undisclosed location

 

 Jack pointed to a target on the map and suggested, "Okay Banzai, if you want one great target, how about this fuel dump?"

 

I shook my head, "Jack that's a good target but not a great target. Besides, it's too predictable and with Mira and Ira chasing us, I don't think it's wise to be too predictable."

 

He nodded his head, "Yeah your right, I hate to think what would happen if they caught us. But man was it fun seeing them on the motorcycles again. I think this damn truck of yours actually scared them."

 

I replied, "Jack I'm not sure anything scares those two. You missed it but we drove right between them. They were so close I could almost make out their faces under the black masks."

 

Jack complained, "Damn Banzai, don't you think it was dangerous getting that close to them."

 

I grinned at Jack, "Hell no, did you forget my Frankentruck is now armored?"

 

He answered, "Yeah I did forget about that. Hey here's some sort of storage facility, we could go after that."

 

I looked, thought a bit and answered, "Jack I don't like those either."

 

Then I pointed to a target and said, "Jack, I have a hell of an idea."

 

Flashback – Mira and Ira – Undisclosed location

 

We received yet one more annoying message from Israel demanding we cease and desist our hunt for the harlequins. After cogitation, I constructed the perfect reply. I informed them of our encounter with the new secret weapon (codenamed Baskerville) and elaborated how it decimated four Soviet Hind helicopters then disappeared in the midst of a whirlwind of smoke! I even included a brief and blurry photograph of Baskerville.

 

I anxiously awaited their reply, removed the omnipresent sand from my undergarments and queried, "Ira, would you please help me remove the remaining vestiges of sand?"

 

She approached, smiled benignly and scolded, "Mira, if you exercised more care when applying your garments like I do, then you would not suffer this annoyance."

 

I grinned benignly in return and countered, "Ira I wager a pedicure that you contain a similar quantity of sand in your undergarments. You however, are more proficient at ignoring the granular issue."

 

She shook her head negatively and responded, "No Mira such would be a sucker's punch wager. Therefore, I will not accept."

 

The truth was, prior to my Sgt. Blaine experience, the sand in my undergarments failed to annoy me. However, now when I envisioned his magnificent body (which was frequently), my nether regions dampened. Hence the sand became an abrasive annoyance in a delicate location.

 

When the reply finally arrived, I vociferously agitated, "Ira they have the audacity to question if Baskerville was a mirage and demand more proof."

 

Ira stated the obvious, "Then Mira, we must provide them with pictures of the decimated helicopters and commence to track the beast."

 

I agreed, "Certainly Ira. We will accomplish that if Baskerville shows up as we are pursuing the harlequins."

 

Ira complained, "Mira do not inform me we are ignoring orders again."

 

I giggled, "Certainly Ira, I will not so inform you then."

 

Now to exact retribution from the harlequins! Revenge is a saucer best served chilled…

 

Flashback – Major M – Command and Control

 

I received a private communique from my Mossad friend and took it in my office. He questioned, "Mike, do you have any experimental vehicles operating in our current TO1?"

 

1 Theater of Operations

 

I answered, "Ari, why would you ask?"

 

He complained, "Mike, stop being such an ass. I know you've had your satellites watching the area ever since your men stirred up the hornet's nest. We had a report that something destroyed four Hind helicopters."

 

I questioned, "I thought you recalled all your operatives?"

 

There was a pause then he said, "Mike you know I told you we only had the twins in the TO and we tried to recall them."

 

This was becoming more interesting. I continued to pry loose more information, "What do you mean tried?"

 

He ignored my question and countered, "Mike let's cut the BS because if what the report says is true and it appears to be from the picture we have, then we might have a bigger problem."

 

I inquired, "Ari, you have a picture? I'd certainly like to see that."

 

He offered, "How about this: I'll send you my picture and the report and you send me any information that you have."

 

I smiled and agreed, "Okay Ari, I will have to declassify the picture and then I will send it to you. Now about your operatives…"

 

He cut me off, "I don't want to talk about those two!" Then he hung up the phone.

 

My e-mail dinged, it was from Ari. I looked and there was an attached file titled Baskerville.jpg. I opened it and there was an even blurrier picture of the vehicle we'd seen so it was worthless. I read the sanitized report and immediately realized it was from the Sedankina bitches but also didn't tell me anything we didn't already know.

 

I sat back in my chair and analyzed the phone conversation. So, the Sedankina bitches weren't listening to Ari anymore. I chuckled and wondered if Sgt. Blaine infected everyone with insubordination. I guess it didn't matter anymore because I wasn't sure they were still alive.

 

I started the process to declassify the picture (which basically destroys the resolution) then my aide knocked and said, "Sir! Something strange is going on."

 

I gave him a dirty look and questioned, "Can't you be more specific?"

 

He shook his head, "It would be better if you come and see for yourself."

 

I walked out into the main room and immediately determined something was certainly going on…

 

Flashback – Ira and Mira – Undisclosed location

 

Mira blatantly ignored the orders to find Baskerville and we proceeded to some storage buildings in hope it would be the harlequins next target. We assumed positions at the top of a dune and waited. Once again Mira's mind wandered and she initiated her infernal sand scribbling…

 

Then she commenced to squirm and bitterly complained, "To hades with this infernal sand!"

 

I tried to appease her as I offered, "Mira is my assistance required?"

 

Mira ignored my attempted ministration and instead caterwauled, "Ira, where are those female salukis? They should have arrived by now."

 

I suggested the obvious, "Mira, perhaps this is too logical a target for them to consider?"

 

She snapped, "Ira, this is not as logically dictated a target as the fuel dump and there are no other targets of interest in the vicinity. Now stop being a Richard Cranium and commence to assist me."

 

Once again I loathed Sgt. Blaine! He infected my sister Mira and she had become as abrasive as the sand that she brayed about. Yes her complaints were annoying, but worse was her disregard for orders since that behavior had commenced to cause problems. So instead of functioning as the finely lubricated precision machine we previously mimicked, Sgt. Blaine's infection represented the sand that abraded the mechanism of our missions.

 

Again I questioned, "Mira, have you considered our direct orders to find and observe Baskerville?"

 

Mira gave me a vicious look and muttered, "Ira, stop being a dud of fuddy…"

 

She was interrupted prior to completion of her comment by the chime of an arriving message. She observed it and stated, "Ira I perceive the harlequins have struck again and it was not these storage buildings as we anticipated."

 

I queried, "Mira what was the target."

 

She paced and contemplated her answer, "This is most irrational of them! They attacked a prison. Why would they want to terminate prisoners? Quick Ira, to our motorcycles, we still might be able to intercept them."

 

At least with this distraction, Mira's moaning was terminated…

 

Flashback – Jack – Undisclosed location

 

Leave it to Banzai to come up with a quirky as hell target. We roared toward the prison (which was lightly guarded) in a cloud of smoke and hail from our machine gun fire (I couldn't see shit because of the smoke so I just fired toward the front of this damn Frankenmonster). There was a big crash, a few bumps, then Banzai stopped and I heard him laughing like hell.

 

The smoke cleared and I asked, "What's so damn funny?"

 

He continued, "Jack the guards took one look at the Frankentruck and beat feet toward the hills. Come on let's free the prisoners."

 

We grabbed our weapons, headed into the prison and I immediately knew if we found anymore damn prisons, they were going to be primary targets - the conditions were unbelievably bad. Layer upon layer of filth, disease and (I shuddered) lice…

 

I looked at some of the worst prisoners and asked Banzai, "What the hell are we going to do with these guys, they can hardly move."

 

Banzai answered, "Jack, I sure as hell don't know. We can't really take them with us."

 

A younger prisoner walked up and said, "Your approach in the devil vehicle frightened their families away. Once you leave the families will return and remove them."

 

Banzai grinned at him and questioned, "Devil vehicle?"

 

He replied, "Yes that's what the guards called your truck when you approached. They yelled that it belched smoke like a demon from hell."

 

I laughed and Banzai asked, "So how would you and the prisoners that are in better shape like to get even for your treatment here?"

 

His eyes lit up and he replied, "I have dreamed of avenging the death of my family every night I have been in here."

 

I answered, "Then round up the rest of the prisoners and meet us outside because you're going to get your wish."

 

We headed back to the Frankenmonster and waited - it wasn't long until a huge mob formed. At first I was worried, but they kept their distance from the truck and the young guy motioned to us. We jumped out of the truck, walked towards him and I asked, "Why the hell is everyone staying so far away from us."

 

He bowed and said, "We did not want to approach too close to your demon truck."

 

Banzai laughed and I explained our plan to him and watched as his eyes sparkled. He turned and explained it to the mob which immediately fired them the hell up. I looked at Banzai and commented, "I think we're done here."

 

Banzai smiled, "Yeah I would say we created another monster. Now it's time to get the hell out of Dodge before Malodorous Major M sees us with his damn satellite."

 

I laughed, "Hey your beginning to sound like Mira. But, hell yes! Let's get out of here and find someplace to clean up."

 

We jumped into the Frankenmonster, Banzai fired it up, the crowd jumped back as we took off like a fucking rocket…

 

Flashback – Mira and Ira – Undisclosed location

 

We proceeded posthaste toward the prison and perceived the smoke plumes prior to our arrival. Perhaps the luck of the lady smiled on us again and we would again discover Baskerville. We brought our vehicles to a stop just shy of the crest of the final dune and proceeded on foot.

 

I was shocked and remarked, "Ira, it appears as if the prisoners have been liberated."

 

Ira responded, "Yes Mira our assumption that the harlequins terminated the prisoners seems to be ill-conceived."

 

We observed as family members relocated prisoners who needed assistance. Meanwhile other prisoners continued to throw fuel on the raging fire which was once the prison. I presented a problem, "Ira, the quantity of prisoners wreaking havoc on the prison is not sufficient to account for the entire prison population."

 

She answered, "Yes Mira, it is less than half the reported population. Perhaps the many vehicle tracks in the sand explain their absence."

 

I observed the tracks and immediately determined they were all aimed in the same direction so I queried, "Ira, where is the map? Why are all the tracks directed toward one location?"

 

We oriented the map, occulated the direction of the tracks, and the target was immediately obvious. I looked at Ira and complained, "Ira, this was a most diabolical and deviously devised devastating diversion. Quick to our motorcycles! Perhaps we will not be too late this time to intercept the harlequins."

 

Flashback – Major M – Command and Control

 

I looked at my techs and commented, "It looks like a prison break to me. But why are they all headed away in the same direction? Usually prisoners scatter when they escape."

 

My tech suggested, "Sir! It appears as if they have some goal in mind."

 

Then I ordered, "Zoom out and let's see where they're headed."

 

The camera zoomed out, I saw a complex and ordered, "Okay let's get a better look at where they're headed."

 

The camera zoomed out and I said, "Ah now it makes sense. But how the hell did they escape and how the hell did they know a presidential palace was in that direction? Do we have any earlier video?"

 

My tech announced, "No Sir! We were only alerted to this after the prison was set on fire."

 

I tapped the table and wondered. This sure as hell felt like something my Sgts. would cook up. But if that's the case, then why haven't they contacted me?

 

Flashback – Jack – Undisclosed location

 

I hated lice and cleaned the hell out of myself, changed clothes and was relaxing as well as I could in the shade because it was damn hot! My mind drifted to the cold of Russia, vodka and sexy as hell Russian women.

 

Banzai was actually trying to get a suntan so I asked, "Are we ever going to contact the Major again."

 

He turned, looked at me and declared, "Fuck the Major! And fuck his little dog too!"

 

I noticed a remarkable change: Since Banzai realized we had Ira and especially Mira on our ass, he'd lost any desire to leave this fucking desert! I wondered if he realized just how dangerous a tightrope we were walking. The two of them were unstable as hell and were just as likely to kill us as kiss us.

 

I questioned, "What about Russia?"

 

He shaded his eyes glanced at me and said, "Fuck Russia too!"

 

I needed to think of someway to change his mind but first I needed to buy some time. I said, "I'm hungry and going to eat something."

 

Banzai jumped up and said, "Yeah so am I let me show you something that should make you happy."

 

I followed Banzai to the Frankenmonster. He popped the hood, took a shemagh, grabbed a foil container and handed it to me. It was hot as hell so I dropped it and asked, "What the hell is that?"

 

Banzai used his shemagh to hold his, unwrapped some of the foil and said, "That is dinner - burritos ala-manifold."

 

I ran, grabbed my shemagh, picked up my burrito, unwrapped it and took a bite. I exclaimed, "Damn that's hot!"

 

Banzai laughed, "Yeah it's been on the manifold all day."

 

I expanded, "No hot as in spicy hot. Next time cut my hot sauce in half."

 

Even as spicy as it was it was still great and most of all it was hot! I was damn tired of eating cold rations.

 

I added, "This would be perfect if we had some beer to wash it down with."

 

Banzai gave me a funny look. As I started to say, "What's…"

 

Banzai shushed me. "Jack shut up and listen! Do you hear what I hear?"

 

I listened and said, "After that damn noisy Frankenmonster I can't hear shit!"

 

Banzai's eyes lit up and he said, "Jack finish your burrito. Let's go have some fun!"

 

I wolfed down my burrito, jumped into Frankenmonster, strapped myself in and wondered what the hell we were going to go do now!

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