Les Mousquetaires – Chapter 5 (Life’s Lemons) Part 2
“To me, a witch is a woman that is capable of letting her intuition take hold of her actions, that communes with her environment, that isn't afraid of facing challenges.” Paulo Coelho
“Jesus Christ, that’s a big fall.”
“Then my suggestion is to not fall,” Bruce told Benny, as together they hung from the outside of the lightning harvester, as they patched the gaping hole in her side.
“You two just be careful with my Mags. She may look old, but there is magic in these bones. In fact, she’s kept me out of more scrapes than I care to remember,” Tiglath told them over the radio.
“Yeah, yeah,” Benny quipped, petulantly. But every one of the harvesters felt the same about their own boat, and so he followed it up with a sympathetic smile.
“Hand me that welder.”
“Once we land this tub you think we’ll be able to get her back in the air?” Bruce asked, as he handed Benny the blue-laser welder.
“Hey! I heard that!” Tiglath hollered angrily into their headsets.
And at that, Bruce cringed and then turned off his radio, and then he signaled for Benny to do the same.
“Once we hit the ground,” Bruce said, as he pressed his face mask tightly against Benny’s, “you split off and go and fetch someone for me. Ya?”
Benny, who was more afraid of Tiglath and the redhead than he was of Bruce raised one eyebrow, and then the other.
“Why? Who?” he asked, in a loud rush, as he looked all around for where Tiglath kept his security cameras.
“Never you mind on both of them scores. I’ll give you a note and you take it to the Vales.”
“Jesus Christ. Are you serious? The Vales?”
Bruce took the blue-laser welder and held its beam uncomfortably close to Benny’s mask.
And then he repeated, “Once we hit the ground, so-to-speak, you split off and go and fetch someone for me, or you won’t be returning from this mission. Got it?”
Benny, the grown man who perpetually looked like a gangly-teen nodded, but otherwise didn’t say a word.
“Good,” Bruce said lightly, as he turned off the welder and then brushed off the front of Benny’s jumpsuit.
“Now, let’s get inside and test the internal air pressure before he decides to put us in the water.”
Benny nodded casually at that, but his eyes still refused to shrink back to their normal size.
I mean, he’d always heard about Bruce and his ulterior motives, but it didn’t comfort him one bit to have to come face-to-face with it himself. Especially not when they were in enemy waters, quite literally.
Half hour later their small water craft was working its way to the only sea town within a thousand square kilometers.
It was a strange man-made island that was really just a chain of barges that never moved. And every year it grew and grew, as old, decommissioned clunkers were added to its ranks.
Basically, what it was though, was the modern-day hangout for all things ‘pirate’. Which included all of the South Pacific Harvesters. All of them under the direct and absolute leadership of Omaha.
“Hey guys,” Benny said, just as soon as his booted foot hit the metal make-shift dock, “I gotta go talk to my old lady’s mum. She lives here, and if she finds out I didn’t go and see her she’ll strip the hide right off my back.”
Bruce smiled widely at that, because Bruce knew Benny’s old lady’s mum would in fact put three giant holes in him if given half the chance.
But the rest of the party didn’t know that, and that suited Bruce just fine.
“Meet us back here in an hour,” Lynnette told him, obviously overly optimistic on how long it would take them to talk the young rebel leader into joining their cause, let alone finding him in the first place.
Because on the man-made floating island of Tortulane there were over a hundred bars and twice as many brothels, and Omaha had financial dealings in at least half of them.
“An hour…” Benny started to whine, but Bruce just narrowed a look on him that reminded the younger harvester that he oughta be running, and not speaking.
“An hour, got it,” Benny quipped over a shoulder, before Lynnette could reply, and then he was off and running towards the South Dock.
“How wealthy is Benny’s old lady’s mum?” Lynnette asked Bruce, with one of her red eyebrows cocked as high as it could go.
But Bruce just swallowed, then smiled, then said, “I think Benny is really trying for some high-end healing, if you know what I mean?”
Lynnette put her eyebrow back in its place, but her skepticism remained in place.
Because she knew Benny well enough to know he wasn’t getting hard with his life literally on the line. That’s basically why he’d been useless to her as a spy in the first place; she’d found out – the hard way. (No pun intended.)
“So, you think you can find Omaha in all of this, in under an hour?” Bruce asked of his old friend, whom he knew had done some pretty strange and miraculous things during her time serving the UN.
“We don’t need to find Omaha,” Lynnette told the vet she’d hoped was a bit brighter than that.
“Omaha’s gonna find us,” she said. Then she strode over to an outside bar, ordered a Ragnar, and then she took a seat on one of the folding chairs on the flag-covered patio.
Then, she pulled a flare gun from the inside of her jacket and fired it into the air.
Bruce, sat opposite from her, with a short glass of the familiar green liquor in his hand.
“Where’s Tiglath?” Lynnette asked, after taking a moment to look around for the old war hero.
“He ran down to the sea-grass juice place,” Bruce told her, obviously not feeling entirely comfortable in the man’s beverage choice, as if it might say something about his virility. Which made Lynnette laugh so fucking hard. And loud.
A moment later, before her laughing fit had even ended, an extremely attractive ochre-skinned man walked up to the pair of them.
“I heard you’re looking for me,” he told them both, with a smile that was every bit as deadly as the large .45 on his hip.
Lynnette smiled a reflexive smile that was born of instant attraction, which instantly put the man at ease.
“We need your help, of course,” she told the man she knew lived on ego. I mean, you didn’t get to be the most powerful man in the entire South Pacific without a giant ego – right?
“Of course you do. But what kind of help?” the extremely charismatic man asked, with another knowing smile that literally made the woman weak.
“We need your harvesters. All of them,” Bruce informed the man, as he eyed his once capable friend, who now seemed to be falling to pieces next to him.
“Is this about the drake?” the average-sized man with the larger-than-life presence asked.
“You know about the drake?” Lynnette asked sharply, suddenly regaining her composure.
“Of course I know about the drake. I figure we have less than four days. You gonna link the ships together to repulse him? Is that the idea?”
Lynnette had known she’d liked this man even before he’d opened his mouth, but seeing his sharp mind at work was really making her day.
“Yeah, that’s the general idea,” she told him truthfully.
“Then you have a plan for Russia and China? Without them we don’t stand a chance,” the man who was sipping a water asked and informed them.
Bruce raised his own eyebrow at that, as he had simply forgotten to ask about them. He’d been so intent on roping in the largest group – the Wolves, the two small countries had totally slipped his mind.
“They’re the easy ones, actually,” Lynnette said, as she sipped on her all-veggie drink.
“Their harvesters are all controlled by a single governing body, so as long as the order comes from a superior they know and trust they’ll comply, regardless of what we tell them to do,” she said, smiling hugely at how well that part of the plan was coming together.
“So, you have authorities in Russia AND China who are willing to give those orders?” Omaha asked, as he narrowed his dark sultry eyes on the woman that was nearly four-times his age.
“I do now. In actuality they’re Royal Dedenti, who’ve been able to assume the identities of some very high ranking officials. Beyond that, I really can’t say anything,” she said, still maintaining a smile that left none at the table questioning her veracity.
“What’s got you all so happy?” Tiglath asked then, as he walked up with a sea-grass juice in his hand.
“Oh, nothing. Nothing at all,” Lynnette said, and then she winked at Omaha.
© Raena Exe 2021
*Inspired by life.
*All characters, places, and events are completely fictional.
*All rights reserved.
Enter a story title, chapter number, or even a keyword to search my entire library.
In an attempt to rescue her missing daughter, a former Secretary of the UN forms a team of Lightning Farmers in order to save the world from a deadly threat coming from space. Which then shifts the balance of power within the galaxy. Something that openly declares war on The Ides. Which Lynnette Parker hopes will lead her to come face-to-face with an élite force within The Ides, known only as The Daisies.