“CALEB!” my scream cut through the still night like a blade.
“Shhh” an urgent whisper shook me from my nightmare.
I gasped. The air tasted salty and I could feel the lilt of water beneath me.
“Why am I on a boat? Where’s Hamish!?”
“Hamish is on land. “ My silencer was a boy of my own 17. “I’m Eamon. You must have hit your head pretty hard.”
“What are you talking about?” my defenses kicked in and I sat up, poised, ready.
“Relax” Eamon tried to make a reassuring gesture. “Hamish put you on this boat so I could help you find Caleb.”
“What do you know about Caleb? “ I narrowed my eyes with suspicion.
“Stop questioning me for one minute. Please.”
I could sense his stress. It oozed from him like lava from a volcano.
I tried to relax “How can you help me?”
“I know where he is.” Eamon steered the boat to a small wharf and knotted it securely. Jumping limberly out of the boat he turned to me and held out a firm hand. “Trust me?”
I was almost startled to hear my name out loud. Spending months in a prison camp, with your identity a distant memory almost made you forget there ever was a you.
Eamon grasped my hand.
Why had I decided to trust him?
“This way.”
He pulled me along a passage that was carved from dark wood. I could smell the fresh oak. “What is this?”
“Smugglers tunnel.”
I never questioned him. Two days with this boy and I had complete faith in him.
“Up this ladder, quiet now.”
It creaked as we both climbed, it didn’t take too long to reach the trapdoor positioned above.
Eamon tapped my leg and signed to me. “Get your gun ready, then push it up.”
I nodded, pulling my gun from my belt.
A scream echoed from above and broke the manufactured silence.
“They’re there.” Eamon pushed me up so I forced the trapdoor open.
We wriggled out into a dark stone room. It smelt like stale blood and sweat.
The room surprisingly only had one occupant. He was strapped to a chair, shirtless, and you could see where he’d been drilled, cut and shocked.
“Caleb.” I recognized my brother despite his swollen and bruised face.
“Maxie.” His voice was sluggish. “You shouldn’t have come.”
“No.” I smiled. “I’ve come this far. You’re coming home.”
Eamon put a hand on my shoulder. “Get him out, they’ll come back soon.”
I nodded and unstrapped Caleb, peeling him from the chair and supporting his weight.
Footsteps rang through the corridor and stopped at the door.
“Go!” hissed Eamon. He flung the trapdoor open and helped me lower Caleb down.
Guards flooded the room.
“Have a great life Maxie.” Eamon forced the trapdoor shut.
Shots. A thud.
I tried pushing the trapdoor open again but there was a deadweight holding it down.
Two days, is that enough reason for my tears?



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