Who are these guys that have taken Khristine captive? Find out!
It approached from the cave.
I kept still as the rustling of the blades slowly diminished. Calmness finally crept back over me and I felt terrible for trying to save Khristine; mainly because I would’ve died before even reaching their camp. But now I also knew what to look for and hear for. I got a second chance, and that made me feel proud.
I raised my head to take a peek and I saw three guys in dirty brown jackets run off with pistols in their hands. I took a deep gulp and crawled towards their camp. On the way over there I began to smell something rotten. It was more to the right of me than in front of me; and when a shoe came into sight, my heart almost stopped. I crawled closer to the body and began to view blood, fresh, around his waist. I could see these clear cuts through his shirt when some of the blood was still oozing out of his body. On the body’s right was a puddle a blood with ants apparently having the time of their life collecting the blood; although at times they had to fend off a few packs of flies trying to get in on the fun. I almost threw up as I came closer to the body. The smell was gruesome and the body wasn’t pretty either. As I closed in on the chest and finally the face, I saw some dents in the left chest plate. The ribs had been broken by something; best probability was a very strong punch since those was no bullet hole and no blood. The face had a few deep scratches here and there, but the worst of it was all the bruises. There was also some blood at the back of the head. Ants had just begun exploring that puddle.
I couldn’t believe how much anger jumped through me. I didn’t just want Travis and the Bob character dead, I wanted them skinned alive. I wanted them to be boiled in lemon juice after being cut all over by attacks from millions of birds like in Alfred Hitchcock’s film, “The Birds.” That’s what I wanted to do to them.
But I couldn’t for the moment and so I sat there in silence thinking mainly about poor Eric. Then Khristine popped in my mind, so I began crawling away from Eric’s body with full hatred and disgust towards this Travis.
When I reached the outer border of the camp, or the furthest tent of the group, I eyed the camp to see anybody, and fortunately nobody was viewed in sight, not even Travis. Uh, oh, what did this mean? He was stupid. I finally got the chance I needed. But when I arrived at Travis’s tent, nobody was there either, except Khristine. Well Travis got off easily, because if eh was there, he wouldn’t have been executed harshly by me.
I unzipped the tent and peeked inside. There was my beautiful Khristine. The golden-blonde hair and those sparkly blue eyes; I was so exhilarated to contemplate my girlfriend once more, that I didn’t hear the footsteps from behind me.
I quietly whispered to my girlfriend, ‘Are you okay?’ She had a scarf tied around her mouth and a few bruises across her pale face. She was naked, and you could make out some bruises across her arms, legs, and torso. She panted heavily, probably from relief and also cried.
‘Don’t worry my dear, I’ll get you out of here,’ I remarked, but she was trying to tell me something. Then when I finally heard the footsteps, I understood what she said. I swore quietly in my mind and did a quick about face. There stood the Travis guy with a knife in hand just about ten feet behind me. I realized then only one of us was going to make to out and he had the advantage with the knife.
‘Who are you?’ Travis asked. I of course knew who he was.
‘Does it concern you?’ I demanded. He was stalling for something. Perhaps he wasn’t the great man I figured him to be at fighting.
‘Yes it does.’
‘No it doesn’t. It’s not your right to interfere in other people’s business.’
‘Well it does when you’re dealing with my girl.’
‘I thought she was Bob’s girl, and that he will allow you time to enjoy with her.’
That silenced him.
He wasn’t a fighter. Then what was he? Wait. That guy yelled gold so that means these guys are gold hunters and they will not let anyone get hear them. They aren’t fighters though. And, why doesn’t he have a gun? Perhaps he left it somewhere and he was coming here to do exactly what I expect him to do. Now were could his gun be? Then he answered:
‘I killed Bob.’
‘How can I believe you.’
‘I killed Eric. It tells you I am serious.’
I was silenced. This guy was serious, yet stupid. How would he get the opportunity to kill Bob?
‘How did you kill him?’
‘It doesn’t concern you.’
‘That is the only way I’ll believe you.’
‘With this knife.’
There was no blood on the knife. He was stalling for something, so since I didn’t want him to stall longer, I attacked him. he brought his knife forward and slashed around my stomach. He missed and I punched him in the nose. Travis staggered back and I stuck my head out to slam him against the tree. I pushed him ‘till he tripped over a rock and we both fell on the ground. My hatred was brought forth as I began punching Travis in the face again. Blood began pouring out of his nose and mouth. Then I elbowed him in the stomach and the reflex brought his head off the ground to a crouching position. He stayed that way for a while; in the meantime, I got up. Viewing him still in the same position, I kicked him square between his eyes, and I heard a crack as his head flew back against a rock. There were then only a few movements from his body, but they were mainly reflexes. I think I killed him. There was a hole between his eyes now and blood dripped out of it. His head slowly rolled to its right and then I checked his pulse; but there was none, so I did kill him. In that moment, I was both proud and upset. I mean, I stopped Travis from raping Khristine, but then again, I also killed a human being. That phrase never crossed my mind when I was thinking about Khristine, and so I didn’t factor that factor in with the rest. But now I was able to go to my girlfriend and free her.
When I reached the tent again, I heard Khristine cry even more. She personally figured I was killed and Travis came back to do his job. But when I said, ‘Khristine, it’s me. Relax,’ she stopped crying.
‘Did Bob rape you?’ I asked as I unwrapped the handkerchief from her mouth. It took her a while to answer—probably because she didn’t want to remember the horrible sight, but she finally nodded.
‘Oh, Tom, how thankful I am you came,’ she replied with shivers from crying. I wiped away the tears from her eyes and untied her hands and feet. She hugged me hard and I almost began to cry; but I knew that there were at least six more guys out there, so I got up and raised Khristine as well and grabbed a large coat in the tent with which I covered Khristine.
‘Ya, well, there’s more guys than just Travis and Bob. Let’s go.’ We walked on around the back of the tent and out of their camp. My love and devotion grew for this girl; I never knew how powerful love had been until I killed Travis. Travis probably didn’t know why such rage filled my bones; he was just a prospector looking for fun. From that moment on I was not going to let Khristine out of my sights, no matter the odds against me.
We climbed back over the hill and hiked back to camp to dress Khristine and head for the ranger station. When we approached the sight of the camp, we noticed people there; and they weren’t part of our troop.
‘Khristine, hide here behind this rock,’ I pointed to a huge rock nearby, ‘while I go and take a peek.’
‘Don’t leave me Tom, please!’ She began crying again.
‘I’m just going to look over that rock there,’ I pointed to a rock about twenty feet away.
‘Okay,’ she agreed and I left for the rock.
I began feeling proud, not only for saving Khristine, but also for being her protector, her guardian, her vigilante, her sentinel. Too much pride, though was a sin to me, and so I tried to keep it down and not get too cocky.
When I reached the rock, I overviewed our campsite and eyed nobody anymore.
I had a few things to do then. I could yell out to see if any member of our group was there, or I could go back to Khristine and take her into camp to get her decent clothing on, not some mining coat. That’s the kind of decisions I hated to make. For instance, if I were to yell out, I could find out who was in that camp I saw, but Bob and the rest could be able to locate our position, and I didn’t want that; mainly because it would take a while before Khristine could get decent clothes on, and by the time she would finish, Bob would be on our backs. Now if I were to go ahead and take Khristine into camp, where somebody is probably hiding behind some rock or tree, just waiting for us to make that move, then I would deal with the risk of being captured and returned to Bob, where I would be eliminated and Khristine be raped a million times.
It took a while, but I finally made my decision. I walked back in the direction of Khristine, and there was Bob, with Khristine in his hands. Behind Bob were three other men with their guns pointed at me. Fear rattled through me; fear of death.
Bob smiled within that huge beard of his and said, ‘Kill him.’
I didn’t know what to do. Khristine was immediately crossed out of my mind now that my life was at stake. But a decision did cross my mind when their guns were raised. I thought that getting wounded would be much better for me than death like this so I ran and jumped over a rock. The three gunmen saw this and fired their pistols. The sound of the gunshot cracked the silence as it cracked a few bones in my right arm. Without looking at my arm to see what shape it was in—I kind of knew what shape it was in from all the pain my brain received from my arm. I got up and continued running for the lake, the gunmen still chasing after me, guns blasting away.
From then I only heard one more bullet. This last bulled struck my right chest and I slipped over a rock, falling forward, face down into clean-smelling grass. My legs flipped over my body and I finished the flip on my back. I lay there, dazed, staring at the blue sky. Some of the trees in my vision tripled and then it looked like all the atoms in the tree exploded slowly into millions of pieces. What was going on? footsteps from nearby faded away to nothing.