Here's Chapter 15. I can't believe it's been a month, so please forgive me: I was away on vacation and it detracted all time I had from working on the story. Anyway, I'm working on Chapter 16 and have a hoped goal date for sometime within the next couple of days to make up for lost time. Anyway, feel free to read the Prologue, Chapter 1, Chapter 2, Chapter 3, Chapter 4, Chapter 5, Chapter 6, Chapter 7, Chapter 8, Chapter 9, Chapter 10, Chapter 11, Chapter 12, Chapter 13, and Chapter 14 beforehand. Anyway, enjoy!
Chapter 15: The Call
â€œHow did you get here?â€ Lisa had turned in her chair to stare at her.
Anne gave a slow, patient breath. â€œAfter I was told, I left my parentsâ€™ house and caught a flight to Costa Rica. I got a room in Jaco, and talked with a man who took some people to Isla Sorna back in 1997. I asked him about your little troupe, and he said his son in Puntarenas might know something. So I went there, and during that little trip I met someone from 1998. He helped me out, and I got a message from him when I returned to my hotel telling me that you had already left. This was later on at night, and, like I said earlier, I couldnâ€™t sit back and wait for the government to investigate and move in on this, since it could be too late. I got a ride here, but at a costâ€¦â€
â€œWhat do you mean?â€
â€œThey ditched me,â€ Anne said. â€œTook everything I had brought to Costa Rica, including my wallet. Threw me overboard and that was it. I had no way back and I had to find you. Since you didnâ€™t know about me being here, I was alone.â€
Lisa lowered her head. â€œAgainâ€¦â€
Anne glanced at the computer screen, which was once again flashing through images of the exterior of the Visitorâ€™s Center.
â€œAnne, Iâ€™m sorryâ€¦Truly, I amâ€¦â€
Anne didnâ€™t pick up from what her cousin had just said, purposely ignoring it out of another twinge of anger. After several silent moments, Anne said, â€œI was actually hoping that the rumors were true. That this place was destroyed. But I knewâ€¦I knew that it wouldnâ€™t be, otherwise you wouldâ€™ve never been hereâ€¦â€ She let out a distant, indifferent laugh. â€œI guess I was rightâ€¦â€
Lisa had become silent and had gone back to searching the security images. She had switched to a new menu of sectors comprising the cameras in and around the lodging areas behind the Visitorâ€™s Center, before bringing up several shots from a recessed shelter that was also somewhere in the back.
â€œTheyâ€™re out there,â€ Lisa said.
â€œOh, Mr. Fox and a guy named Mooreâ€¦The formerâ€™s sort of in charge and Mooreâ€™s like a second-in-command.â€
â€œWhereâ€™s your friend David?â€
â€œI donâ€™t knowâ€¦He has to be somewhere out there with them. The others said they were going out to the maintenance shed, I think. Maybe theyâ€™re going to work on bringing back some more power.â€
â€œWhatâ€™s the point in that?â€
â€œIâ€™m just throwing out an optionâ€¦â€
Anne briefly nodded, as Lisa brought up another security menu. Soon, new images filled the screen. Lisa sat up. â€œOh, there they areâ€¦Out by the raptor pen.â€
Anne tried to soak in the last two words her cousin had just said, before Lisa stood. â€œCome on, letâ€™s go and get you explained.â€
Lisa led her out of the control room, entering the hall. They turned left from the door, passing the laboratory door, and at the end of the hall entered another door, where the ground became carpeted.
Several more doors were here, but they continued right, again stopping near the end until they reached a set of elevator doors on their left, the far wall, that went downstairs. Lisa said, â€œThe elevatorâ€™s not workingâ€¦â€
She motioned Anne toward a flight of stairs next to the elevator that led down, before doubling back to reach the ground floor below.
As they descended, Lisa spoke. â€œThese were the private stairs. All the upper levels were pretty much private, but the control room and lab for example could be seen by visitors through the theater tour. Here,â€ she said, stepping out onto the first floor, â€œthey also had a back hall restricted to personnel only.â€
Anne could see that their new surroundings was a large, tiled area somewhere in the back of the Visitorâ€™s Center. The hall stretched on back toward the main lobby of the Visitorâ€™s Center, and nearby were a set of stairs to the left of the ones they had just come down, leading downward on the intersecting wall.
A glass door, too, was on the wall directly next to the stairs they had come down, and Lisa pointed to it. â€œThat leads out back, while those stairs,â€ she motioned to the stairs nearby, â€œlead down to the garage.â€
Lisa opened the door to the back, and Anne followed.
When they had stepped out into the back area outside of the Visitorâ€™s Center, Anne had glimpsed a series of buildings architecturally similar to the Visitorâ€™s Center off to the left, enclosed in a black steel gate. Visitor lodgingsâ€¦
Before she could see more, Lisa had started leading her right, down a large dirt path leading into the surrounding jungle. At the end of it, they entered a clearing, where the raptor pen she had seen on the visual monitor stood.
On their side, the raptor pen had a rising walkway that ran alongside the exterior of the enclosure itself. It was railed, and built into the cement wall. A large tower on the left overlooked the building, and to the right was a large archway, home to a steel gate. Electric fencing ran on top of the walls surrounding the enclosure, but Anne could see that a large portion of it on their side was gnarled and bent.
Lisa said, â€œWhen the power went out, they figured it outâ€¦â€
A sudden chill vibrated its way through Anne, who had suddenly become aware of her surroundings again and the fact she was out in the open.
Off to the left of the raptor pen, she could see the entrance to a submerged shelter. A concrete structure jutted from the ground; a door built into the recess of it that undoubtedly opened up to a flight of descending stairs.
Lisa pointed off to the right, where Anne could barely see an overgrown path branching off further into the jungle. â€œThe maintenance shed is that wayâ€¦â€
â€œWhere are your friends?â€
â€œI couldâ€™ve sworn they were here.â€
Lisa walked over to the raptor pen, moving around the rail to ascend the ramp to the viewing walkway.
Anne stayed where she was, ignoring any and all sound around her except for the distant sound of voices somewhere back the way they had came. Loud voices, almost like whoever was talking was frustrated or angry.
They soon stopped, and Anne became aware that Lisa was talking. Lisa had returned next to her, looking back where Anne had been listening moments before. â€œAh, good,â€ she smiled. â€œSomeoneâ€™s coming.â€
Anne turned back, seeing a man appear from a fresh gap in the bushes alongside the main trail. He looked up, noticing them and began toward them, the bushes swinging back to their natural position.
Lisa gave a slight wave, â€œHey Mr. Fox!â€
Anne began to ask who before the man came to a halt in front of them. He had black hair, with a pair of piercing green eyes. He was dressed in low black shorts and a dark green shirt, which was covered by a camouflage vest with several pockets.
His eyes swept over Anne, before returning to Lisa. â€œOut for a walk?â€ He smiled, his eyes once again flashing on Anne for a brief moment.
â€œUh, you could say thatâ€¦I was actually looking for you and David. I saw you on the video monitor back in the control room. When we got here you guys werenâ€™t here.â€
â€œAh, yes, well, we took our own little walk.â€
â€œI guess youâ€™re wondering who this is,â€ Lisa said, and Anne once more got a flash of those green eyes.
â€œI supposeâ€¦After all, I didnâ€™t think we had another extra person come alongâ€¦â€
Lisa began speaking again, almost hurriedly. â€œThis is my cousin, Anne. Itâ€™s sort of a long story, but she followed me.â€
Anne felt that familiar sense of anger twinge through her body, making her want to correct Lisa. After all, it wasnâ€™t like she had actually wanted to follow her. Hell, she never wouldâ€™ve known Lisa was here if it hadnâ€™t been for an act of best intentions. Lisa went on before Anne could say anything.
â€œShe was in the island. I found her on the monitor, since she had found her way back here. Sheâ€™s been through a lot, so I hope this doesnâ€™t slow or shorten the shoot any.â€
The man shook his head. â€œNot at all. Iâ€™m sorry to hear thatâ€¦If I may ask, um, how exactly did you find us?â€
Anne stared at the man Lisa had called Mr. Fox. â€œI asked around. When I found out, I got here by boatâ€¦â€
The manâ€™s face was quizzical. â€œBy boat? Is someone waiting for you?â€
Anne felt a deep tingle dance through her spine. â€œNo. I thought they would, but we sort of had a change of plans for the moment.â€
His green eyes swept over her shoulder, briefly looking past her at the raptor pen, as if he was searching for another question. The right question. Lisa cut in before he could reply. â€œThe best thing is that sheâ€™s alright. Now that sheâ€™s here, can she just tag along?â€
Anne shot a glance at Lisa, trying to remind her that she wanted to get the two off the island, but Lisa hadnâ€™t been looking at her. She appeared as if she was trying not to. â€œLike I said, Iâ€™m hoping this doesnâ€™t stop anything in your progress, but she can just stick with me.â€
The man scratched his chin. â€œOne more person canâ€™t hurt. Iâ€™d like to know a little more, but that might have to wait. After all, I havenâ€™t even introduced myself.â€ His hand reached out. â€œSimon Fox, head of our little photography unit.â€
Anne gave a quick shake back. â€œAnne Jones.â€
â€œWell, Anne, we may or may not have an extra camera in the truck you can borrow, in case youâ€™re interested. I believe she has several disposables, as well,â€ he said, motioning to Lisa.
Lisa nudged Anne. â€œGot them so I could have a few pictures I could take home that I could just get developed over at one of the cheap stands in the mall or a grocery store in an hourâ€¦â€
Anne gave a forced smile, before Fox said, â€œMoore got a radio call from Howard. Him and Gordon are up in the northern region of the island, checking out a spot where we had documented activity.â€ Anne knew he was now talking to Lisa. â€œThey say they need assistance, so Moore and I will be heading there in the jeep.â€
â€œIs David going?â€
Fox appeared to think this over, but quickly. â€œUh, yesâ€¦I guess so.â€
â€œDo you mind if we come along? Maybe show Anne how the process works?â€
Fox stared intently at Lisa, and for the faintest moment Anne thought something had flickered across those green eyes. â€œFine. But again, you might need to just stay with the jeep.â€
â€œAlright,â€ Lisa said. â€œWhenâ€™re we going?â€
â€œTen minutes, maybe. Moore is getting the jeep ready, and Iâ€™m sure David is already aware.â€
â€œThanks Mr. Fox.â€
Simon Fox turned away, nodding at the both of them. As he was at a distance, Anne couldâ€™ve sworn she had heard him mutter â€œDamn.â€
â€œYou know Lisa, I donâ€™t think your friend Mr. Fox wants us tagging along.â€
â€œWhat do you mean?â€
â€œJust in the way he acted.â€
Lisa shrugged. â€œHow so? I guess Iâ€™ve grown to whatever you see. Just ignore it, heâ€™s fine with it.â€
Anne frowned. â€œWhat did he mean about you having to stay with the jeep again? He doesnâ€™t want you going where they are?â€
â€œWell, yes and no.â€
They had returned to the control room, where Lisa had begun to tie up her backpack. Inside, she had a pair of binoculars, some food, andâ€”like Fox had saidâ€”several disposable cameras. Lisa finished what she was saying as she crumpled up an empty granola bar wrapped and tossed it into a pocket she had designated for trash. â€œTheyâ€™ve taken me into some of the areas where the animals have been, and once right up to one of the nests, but it was a herbivore nest. I think theyâ€™ve tried to get as close as possible to the other nests, to get photos, but Iâ€™ve had to stay behind so they can work their magic, so to speak. Like the nest I saw, I saw it for a few moments or so, but they wouldnâ€™t let me take pictures because the disposable is too loud, and then David took me back. I think itâ€™s also for safety, too. Since I got to come along, they canâ€™t risk me being hurt, especially in the one or two carnivore nests theyâ€™ve gone into.â€
Anne nodded, her frown lightening up but still lingering, unable to go away. Lisa saw her expression. â€œItâ€™s okay Anne. I think I told you theyâ€™re prepared, theyâ€™re armed in case something happens, and nothing has.â€
Anne looked away, pondering her annoyance of her cousin. The cousin she had thought was once smart. Look at her nowâ€¦Miss Everything-Is-Alrightâ€¦She never had to go through what I had, but here she is, giving meâ€”her â€œinspirationâ€ for being hereâ€”reasonâ€¦
â€œYou want a disposable?â€
Anne was suddenly torn from her thoughts. â€œWhat?â€
Lisa was holding up one of the disposable cameras, waving it in her fingers. â€œDisposable? Want one?â€
Lisa gave a brief laugh. â€œTake one, I insist.â€ She held it out, shoving it toward her.
Anne unwillingly took it, forcing it into her pocket. Lisa smiled, â€œThere. Now if you see something you utterly canâ€™t afford to not take a picture of, you have the chance.â€
It had taken them less than five minutes to get back through the arced theater tunnel, downstairs, and outside. Once again they were out front, Anne realizing how fast the time had gone since she had pulled up there with the electric cart, which was still pulled up near the base of the stairs.
Lisa adjusted her bag, pointing to the black jeep that had now appeared in front of the cart. Three men were around it, one of whom she clearly recognized as Simon Fox, who looked up at them as they descended the exterior stairs of the Visitorâ€™s Center.
Fox said something, and the two men stopped, coming around the jeep alongside him. Fox introduced the first man, who was clearly over six feet tall. He had short, brown hair and a matching goatee. He was wearing the same dark green shirt Simon Fox was wearing, with a black vest rather than the same camouflage one Fox had also been wearing. He had an almost army-like pair of camouflage pants instead. â€œThis is Andrew Moore,â€ Fox said, giving a swift pat to his shoulder. Moore nodded as Fox said, â€œA good friend of mine. Good at making sure those animals donâ€™t get too close for comfort when needed, but so-so with a camera.â€
Fox moved his hand past Moore and pointed at the second man. â€œDavid Alten.â€ He was shorter than the man beside him, Moore, and his black hair seemed, for the moment, unkempt. He was dressed in medium khakis and a black shirt.
So this is the guy that was Lisaâ€™s final lure hereâ€¦
Fox had said something else, but Anne hadnâ€™t been listening. As long as it hadnâ€™t ended in her name being repeated for her to answer a question, she didnâ€™t care either. She had been looking over Davidâ€™s right shoulder, at the back of the jeep where the trunk had been modified for a large, steel case to sit inside the jeepâ€™s open back. The jeep still appeared clean, except for the mild splashes of mud caked along the bottom.
â€œWe better get a move on then,â€ someone said, and Anne felt Lisa press her shoulder. â€œCome on.â€
Moore had already climbed into the driverâ€™s seat, and Simon Fox had made his way into the passengerâ€™s seat. In the back row, David Alten and Anne had placed themselves on either side of Lisa, who sat in the middle. Anne looked back, seeing that the thick, cloth roof slanted down behind them, leaving a minor amount of room behind the row for several boxes to be crammed in. The cloth stopped above the crate in back, which was half-inside and half-exposed in the exterior trunk.
She nudged Lisa. â€œWhatâ€™s in there?â€
Before Lisa could speak, Fox said, â€œEquipment. Our cameras and such. Very delicate equipment.â€
â€œItâ€™s pretty big for a small photo trip.â€
â€œWell, the bigger the better, they say.â€
The jeep rumbled to life, Moore turning it around with a bounce on the middle track as the right wheels made their way over it. Anne caught a quick glance of the pond through the front window as they pulled onto the grassy shore of it, before they turned around completely, heading back down the road, away from the entrance of the Park and toward the garage area.
Trespasser 2 - Chapter 15
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Trespasser 2 - Chapter 15
2 posts • Page 1 of 1