tagNon-EroticA Tiny Slip Ch. 03

A Tiny Slip Ch. 03

byWifeWatchman©

The chronological order of my stories is now listed in WifeWatchman's biography.

Feedback and
constructive criticism is very much appreciated, and I encourage feedback for ideas.

This story contains graphic scenes, language and actions that might be extremely offensive to some people. These scenes, words and actions are used only for the literary purposes of this story. The author does not condone murder, racial language, violence, rape or violence against women, and any depictions of any of these in this story should not be construed as acceptance of the above.


This story is dedicated to those who died on the other side of a politically drawn line...

Part 14 - Realm Of The Senses

The time disappeared off the screen. The blinking lights on the bombs went dark. Nothing else happened. Cindy looked around, seeing the remaining people leaving through the baptismal pool, Mrs. Veasley still greeting the last of them.

"Helicopter down! Helicopter has dropped off radar!" said the Police radio. Cindy heard it, not quite believing, then heard her own words in her head:

He pressed the button.

She knew it in her soul. She felt an agonizing pain in her heart as she bent over. Don had pressed the button. He had saved her, saved all of them, but he had paid the ultimate price in doing so.

Then, it happened. Her mind was flooded. She looked up, and could only see in black-and-white. She saw a cone of light from a limitlessly high distance, and it illuminated Mrs. Veasley, who was alone with her, sitting there in her wheelchair in a black, limitless space.

"Use your MIND, Child!" Mrs. Veasley ordered, her eyes burning right through Cindy. "Search your feelings! Reach out as you know how to do!"

Cindy closed her eyes and let her mind flow. She fought through the turmoil of her heart, the static of everything else around her. She reached out with her mind, letting it settle, letting it flow.... and she felt it.

She opened her eyes, now seeing full color, now seeing everyone. She saw Mrs. Veasley staring at her, then turning her head and slumping as Cindy whispered "He's alive..."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I looked around, sitting before the small charcoal fire, drinking the medicinal green tea. I saw the last of the sun descending below the horizon to the west. I saw the grass waving in the breeze. I could make out the grains on the tops of the stems. I saw a dragonfly skipping along from plant to plant, and I could hear the wind rustling through the field. I realized the dragonfly was at least fifty yards away from me, yet I could see it and its bright colors with untoward clarity.

"What a beautiful night." I said, smelling the fires as well as the grasses around me. "I can see... so far..."

"Yes, your senses are on a higher plane, only to be achieved by one who freely goes to meet Death, yet returns to the living." The words were stated by Takaki Misaki. He was sitting to my right, wearing all black but with an overmantle and a samurai-style belt. "Here, have some more tea."

"Arigato, Misaki-sama." I said. He poured and I drank from the simple white porcelain cup. The tea tasted incredibly good, almost alive on my tongue.

About fifty yards behind my left shoulder was the burning wreckage of a helicopter. I vaguely remember having shunted the altimeter, dropping quickly to about 100 feet altitude, then disengaging the motor from the rotors. They auto-rotated as the helicopter dropped.

Below me, Masaki's black-clad men and women had put a large air mattress, like stunt people use in movies, and blown it up. It was enough to break my fall. But the springs on the helicopter were not good, and I landed *HARD*. My lower back hurt. Really hurt.

The pain was enough to keep me conscious, though. I remember two men helping me out of the seat, cutting off my seatbelt straps as other men sprayed liquid nitrogen on the bomb to keep it from detonating. Two others were cutting out Pastor Westboro, cutting through the chains that had bound him. How had they known to have equipment to do that? I wondered as I was placed in the sidecar of a motorcycle and driven to where a makeshift fire and tea service was being set up, with Misaki-sama waiting for me there. Pastor Westboro's body was about twenty yards to my left, well away from the burning chopper. The bomb finally exploded, but was facing away from us and so most of the debris went the other way. Still, we ducked.

A tall man, masked and in all black came up. "Hello, Todd." I said. "I was wondering when you would show up."

He took off his mask, grinning that handsome grin of his. "Yes, it's me, Uncle Don. How did you know?"

"If you seriously wish to deceive me, Todd-san," I said, "you will have to change your bodywash while my senses are at this level." Misaki chuckled.

"Sire," Todd said, "we need to go. The Police are coming."

"Yes, we must go." said Misaki. "Please help your uncle to stand."

"No, I'll do it." I said. I knew it was more than just my duty to do so. Cindy would call it a useless exercise in men's alpha-dog games. I knew that this time, it was much, much more.

And it was one of the most agonizing chores of my life. Pain shot through my back, and I was feeling an exhaustion like I'd never known before. My legs shook almost violently as I pulled up off my hands and knees and willed myself to move.

And I made it. I stood erect. Misaki and Todd and the other masked men there all bowed to me. I bowed back as much as I could.

"Todd-san, your duty is to your uncle now. Stay with him." said Misaki-san.

"Where's my crowbar?" I asked. "It was on the helicopter..."

"We'll find it, Uncle Don." said Todd. "Don't stress on it."

They packed up all the stuff, and a motorcycle with a sidecar pulled up to take Takaki back to the 18-wheeler truck just down the road. I heard sirens, then saw the blue lights of a Police cruiser, followed by the red and white lightbar of an ambulance.

Part 15 - The Final Victim

"That's it, everyone's out." said Sergeant Rudistan. "Only Mrs. Veasley to go."

Cindy looked over. Mrs. Veasley had slumped over, and seemed to be sleeping. Cindy went over to her. "Mrs. Veasley, it's time to go." There was no response. Cindy felt for a pulse... and found none.

"We need to give her CPR." said Rudistan, attempting to take her out of her chair.

"No." said Cindy, tears beginning to roll down her cheeks. "I saw her slumped several minutes ago. She's gone." She did not say that her certainty came from more than just the physical; she could feel that Mrs. Veasley's Spirit had departed to a Higher Place.

"I'm sorry, ma'am." said Rudistan, seeing Cindy's tears. "I'll carry her body out of here."

"No, I'll do it." said Cindy. She went over and got the cloth from the communion table and used it to cover Mrs. Veasley's face and upper body. Then she picked up Mrs. Veasley's mortal remains, and followed Rudistan to the baptismal pool.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

There was still a large crowd gathered, watching as people came out of the Church one by one. Families were reunited and moved to safety, but no one wanted to leave. Some people were still singing as they watched.

Then they saw two Fireman bring an American flag to the entrance. A body was brought out, covered with a cloth, and put on a gurney. The American flag was then draped over the body. It was the least they could do for the late Army Nurse, Lieutenant Colonel Veasley.

Everyone groaned as they watched the body being taken to the hearse that had been on standby, and was only needed in this crisis. Word quickly spread who it was.

When Sergeant Rudistan appeared, followed by the last one out, Captain Cindy Ross, the gathering applauded. Cindy acknowledged the praise as she walked to the Command tent. She was greeted by Chief Griswold, and they hugged for a long moment.

"Well done, Captain." said Griswold. Chief Moynahan also praised her.

"What happened to Mrs. Veasley?" asked someone.

"Natural causes, I think." Cindy called out. "She just slumped over." She heard a child crying and looked over. Little Susie Haskins was sobbing uncontrollably. Cindy went over to her.

"Why did Mrs. Veasley have to die?" Susie asked through her sobs as Cindy hugged her. "Why her? She was the bravest one of all, she kept us calm, she shouldn't have been the one to die..."

Cindy was at the point of tears herself as she hugged the little girl. She then said "Susie, sometimes the good people die, too. Mrs. Veasley did so well, and her heart was so great, that the Lord took her up to be with Him. Her purpose here was done. We don't understand things like that. All we can do is what she told you to do: live your life as best you can. Do great things."

Susie Haskins would do great things. She would become a Nurse, as Mrs. Veasley had been. And she would care for the patients of University Hospital for decades.

Part 16 - The Consultant's Final Atrocity

After Susie's parents took Susie home, Cindy came back to the Command tent. "What about..." she asked. She couldn't go on.

"We don't know yet." said Chief Moynahan, fully understanding. Chief Griswold also had a faraway look in his eyes. Fire Chief Quinlin came up.

"Excellent work, Captain." he said to Cindy. "We're ready to send in the Bomb Squads to defuse and take out the bombs."

"Go for it." said Moynahan. "By the way, where is Sheriff Allgood?"

"At the Hospital." said Commander Della Harlow. "His wife was the patient Dr. Fredricson brought and admitted to the hospital. Not sure what the situation is, but he's over there."

After briefing the bomb teams, Cindy watched them as they went in. They were able to enter the front doors to the lobby, and open the sanctuary doors. Two teams worked to clear the Sanctuary. The other two teams were in the back, in the Chapel, taking the bomb off the front doors of the Chapel.

Just then, Myron Milton ran up to Cindy, carrying some sort of device which looked like a portable radio. "Ma'am, I'm getting a radio signal... it's a repeating hum from high pitch to low." He let Cindy listen on the earphones.

"Oh my God!" Cindy cried out, very sure. "It's a countdown!"

She grabbed Chief Quinlin's radio. "GET OUT OF THERE!!!" she yelled into it. "There are more bombs! Get out!!!! Get out!!!"

One team rushed out the Chapel doors. She saw another come out, then a third around the front.

*BOOM!* *BOOM!* *BOOM!* *KA-WHAM!*

Everyone watched in horror and shock as the Church began to collapse. The main Sanctuary folded in on itself, the walls falling inwards onto the roof. Then the Fellowship Hall and offices went down as if on cue as more explosions were heard. Then the roof of the Chapel also caved in.

"All teams, report!" yelled Cindy into the radio. "Report!"

"Team 1, accounted for."....

"Team 3, accounted for."...

"Team 2... accounted for." Then silence.

"Team 4, report! Team Four!" yelled Cindy. Finally, she heard the radio answer as the final team came around the rubble of the Sanctuary, one man being helped.

"Team 4, accounted for. One injury."

The Police and Firemen cheered. Many church members were too shocked at what had just happened to their House of Worship, though others cheered the Firemen getting out in time.

"Good work, Blue Crowbar." growled Chief Griswold into Cindy's ear. He saw her worry. "If you want to leave, go ahead.

"No," Cindy said, "my place of duty is here. Wow, would you look at that..."

She pointed to the Chapel. The roof had caved in, but the walls had stood... and the beautiful stained-glass windows, over a century old, had survived. Not one broken pane. They would become the foundation for the Church's renewal from the devastation wrought by Raymond Westboro.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Todd and I heard the noise of the bombs and the collapsing Church just as the ambulance and Police cruiser arrived. Detective Joanne Warner, Lt. Wes Masters, and Sergeant Irwin got out and came up to us.

"Commander!" said Joanne brightly. "You're looking mighty chipper today for a man who crashed in a helicopter." She could see the damage and the scene as the light faded.

"Your Pastor was not so fortunate." I said, pointing at the body, the face and head covered by a cloth. Sergeant Irwin called for a Crime Lab team and a hearse.

"What happened in Town?" I asked.

"Captain Ross got everyone out alive, except Mrs. Veasley." said 'Coldiron' Masters. "She may have had a heart attack, but she died inside. Then there were more bombs, and the church collapsed. That's what the radio said. Nobody died, except Mrs. Veasley."

I felt sad for Mrs. Veasley. She would go down as the last victim of the Consultant of Crime. But he would harm no one else.

"Sir," said Joanne, extending the radio, "would you like to tell the world that you're still alive and kicking butt?"

"Why don't you do it, Detective Warner." I said. "You've earned it. He failed to kill you, and now he's failed to kill me. So why don't you tell them of his utter failure." Masters nodded as Joanne smiled brightly.

The ambulance medics were searching me for injuries, finding nothing external. Still, my lower back hurt as I said "Meanwhile, somebody please find my crowbar..."

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Everyone at the Church gathered around as the Police radio crackled.

"Break, break, break." came the voice of Detective Warner over the radio. "This is Detective Warner. We are at the scene of the helicopter crash at Cemetery Hill... Raymond Westboro is dead. Raymond Westboro is dead..."

Some in the crowd groaned, while some, including Cindy and those around her, held their breaths as they waited for the rest of it. The tension could be cut with a knife. It seemed like forever, but the next words finally came out:

"Commander Troy... is alive! I say again... Commander Troy is alive! He is being transported to the Hospital with minor injuries..."

A huge cheer erupted from the Police and Firemen at the scene. Davie Marsdon and Timmy Austin were high-fiving, and Policemen started high-fiving them as they ran around.

Cindy Ross was bent over, the relief in her heart so great that it was painful. She felt someone pat her back and looked up to see Chief Griswold, tears streaming from his eyes. He gave her the first of many hugs she would receive that night...

Part 17 - The Morning After

I woke up in University Hospital. It was 5:00am, Thursday, June 23d. The lovely black Nurse Jones was checking my temperature. My mother was lying on the sofa in front of the window, asleep.

"Good morning." I said sleepily. "Anything out of place?"

"Oh, good morning, Commander." Nurse Jones said brightly. "You have a couple of vertebrae that did not appreciate your helicopter crashing, but they're hairline fractures, not total breaks. And nothing else broken. You're a lucky man... a brave man, but a lucky man."

"Yes, very brave, and very lucky." said my mother, who had woken up.

"Hi, Mom... it just sorta happened..." I said, using the time-honored excuse for the many times I came home in my youth knowing I was about to be in trouble.

"Yes, a lot of things 'just sorta happened', son." said my mother, her face breaking into a grin. "And thank God you came out of it in one piece."

I remembered being brought in the night before, checked out thoroughly by Dr. Morgan... and by my wife. I gave Laura a very long, warm hug. She told me the children were fine, and she was going to take them home, as Carole was old enough to understand that something wasn't right. Chief Griswold would bring Bowser and Buddy home, as well.

Then I was filled in on the day's and night's activities by Sergeant Irwin and Patrolman Hicks. Della Harlow came by and filled me in on more details, as well as warning me that the Media was being kept out, but were like rabid dogs in wanting to know what happened to me. I began tiring, probably aided by a sedative, and I vaguely remembered my mother coming into my room as I fell asleep...

Back to the present. I could see my mom was tired, so I asked her to go home and get some sleep. Nurse Jones also said my mother should do that, as I was going to be getting tested by the doctors soon, so my mom left the room.

I looked around as Nurse Jones finished her routine. I saw a metal cane next to me, which looked to be aircraft-grade aluminum with a rubber end, a black rubber handle, and what looked like a twistable connector to extend it. I suspected what it was.

"I'll see you later, handsome." said Nurse Jones. She leaned over me and pressed her lips to mine in a warm kiss. It deepened as our tongues twined for a moment, then she stood up. "You've got one hell of a reward coming when you get out of here." the beautiful black woman promised. As I watched her leave, I realized that my male anatomy was still working just fine...

After Nurse Jones left the room, I checked the cane. Sure enough, it was a sword cane, and the sword was as fine a steel as any samurai katana. This was from my black-clad friends and Misaki-sama, for me to protect myself. Which reminded me...

Still no crowbar to be found. I hated to lose it, considering what it meant and what it was made out of. At the same time, it was time to move forward. Westboro was defeated, and he was dead. It was all about cleaning up the details and putting his Syndicate out of action, and then moving on to the next task at hand: Superior Bloodlines.

I got up and, using the cane, walked into the hallway. I was wearing dark blue pajamas... real pajamas. Laura must've brought them after I'd fallen asleep.

My back hurt, but I bore the pain. What is pain, but a privilege for an Iron Crowbar to bear, I thought to myself. As I went down the hall, I saw Sergeant Rudistan sitting at the guard post near the Nurse's Station. He saw me and grinned.

"Looking mighty spry, there, Commander!" he said, getting up. "You should be resting."

"As should you, Sergeant." I said. "Have you been up all night?" I extended my hand and he shook it.

"No sir." said Rudistan. "I got a few hours sleep last night, got here about 30 minutes ago."

"So," I said, "give me the Cliff Notes. Casualties?"

"Mrs. Veasley died in the Church during the evacuation of it." said Rudistan. "Medical Examiner says it was natural causes. Heart failure, though not a heart attack. M.E. Martha said the woman just died, it was her time. Pastor Westboro himself was the only other death. Martha said that was suicide by cyanide ingestion."

I nodded. "Injuries?"

"One fireman, not serious. Also, Lieutenant Croyle's wound wasn't too bad. Some doctor came in and assisted Dr. Morgan. Dr. Morgan said the other doctor was a military surgeon from combat zones and is really good with wounds. Patched Lt. Croyle up really good."

Rudistan went on: "Sheriff Allgood's wife was brought in. She was beat up pretty bad. Your wife brought her in, and I think you'll have to ask your wife what happened there; we were told to 'not remember' anything we'd seen about it."

"Consider me 'not surprised'." I said. "And Mr. Ward?"

"He pulled through." said Rudistan. "Dr. Morgan said it was touch-and-go, but the old man rallied hard. He's in ICU. Lt. Croyle is in a room, by the way, just down the hall."

Just then, Chief Moynahan came up, along with Lt. Curly Goodwin of Internal Affairs. "I'm delighted to see you standing, Commander." said Moynahan. "Now let's go back to your room for your official statement of what happened."

"Sergeant Rudistan," I said before going, "I heard of your own actions yesterday. Outstanding job."

"Thank you, sir, but Captain Ross was the one." Rudistan replied.

"And you were right there, as well." I said. "I will not be forgetting that."

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