Chapter 62

"MAMA, GET DOWN!!"

At the sound of Tommy's cry, Simone flew from the chair and pressed herself against the floor. She had no idea what was about to happen, but she knew from Tommy's scream that it wasnít something to be ignored.

Tracy stared at Simone in shock when she leapt from the chair. How did she do that? She was tied up-. The force of the explosion blew all other thoughts from Tracy's mind as she was thrown across the room.

The tiny grenades blew the entire length of the wall out. Debris sailed across the room. The desk and the other pieces of furniture over turned. The flashlight, still shining its light, landed not far from Simone, illuminating her motionless face and body.

~*~

"MAMA!!"

Tommy rose from his reclining position on the ground. He moved towards the demolished rooms as fast as his legs could carry him. Keesha was about to follow him when Jason stopped her.

"Jason, what are you-"

"You can't go in there. You're not wearing shoes. There could be sharp pieces of glass in there. Wait for us here. Okay?" he softly said, lightly caressing her cheek with his finger.

Keesha removed his finger from her face and held his hand. Giving him a gentle squeeze, she said, "Okay. I'll wait. Good luck."

Jason returned the squeeze and released her hand. He went into the room and was not surprised by what he saw. The rooms were completely destroyed. He went through the wall into what was left of the other room and saw Tommy leaning over the body of a woman.

Tommy heard Jason enter and looked at him with tears streaming down his cheeks. "She's not moving."

Jason quickly moved to Tommy's side and gently pushed him out of the way. "Let me see."

Jason placed two fingers on her neck and felt for a pulse. He breathed a sigh of relief and said, "She's breathing. Her pulse is faint, but she's still alive. Help me get this stuff off of her and we'll get her out of here. I have a feeling we donít have much time before the rest of this place caves in."

Tommy and Jason made quick work of the debris and wood which covered Simone. Carefully, Jason rolled Simone onto her back.

"Mama. It's me. Tommy. I'm here, Mama. I came back," Tommy whispered, taking deep breaths to keep the tears from his voice.

"Tommy," Simone weakly croaked. "I knew you would."

"Mama!" Tommy screamed when Simone grew still.

"Tommy, it's okay. She just lost consciousness. Move back a little while I pick her up."

Tommy backed up as Jason carefully lifted his mother from the floor.

"Do you need any help? I can carry her," Tommy suggested.

"That's okay. She's not too heavy. We've just got to get the hell out of here," Jason said, cradling Simone in his arms. He was amazed at how light she felt in his arms, but didn't say anything. He didn't want to alarm Tommy that her frail body might not be able to survive the aftereffects of a bomb blast. Right now, her situation was touch and go at best. The sooner they got her out of there the better.

"I'm afraid we can't let you do that."

Tommy and Jason stopped at the sound of the unfamiliar voice. Turning to face whoever the voice belonged to, Tommy's hand moved to his gun.

"I wouldnít do that if I were you. Put the gun belt down and put the woman down, too. Then raise your hands."

Neither Jason nor Tommy moved. They were mentally counting the odds. There were about three men. All of them had guns. They were also equipped with the special night goggles, too, which was why they were able to come into the room unnoticed. Jason guessed that if he could move fast enough, he and Tommy would be able to handle them. He'd have to find some place to lay Simone, though.

"Guys, donít make us do this the hard way. Leave the woman and we may be willing to let you guys go."

"I'm afraid we can't do that," Jason said quietly.

"Well, I guess we will have to do this the hard way," the head guard said. He raised his gun and aimed it at Jason's head.

"I wouldnít do that if I were you," came the deadly quiet voice from what used to be the doorway. "Drop it."

The head guard didn't obey the warning and cocked the gun in preparation of pulling the trigger.

He never got a chance to fire the gun. The .22 caliber bullet tore through his shoulder, causing him to drop the firearm. The two men behind him dropped their weapons and put their hands on their head. Tommy grabbed their guns and pointed the guns at them.

As Keesha smiled from the door way, Jason said, "My good luck charm. Still a perfect shot."

"Always," she said, moving out of his way as he, carrying Simone, came towards her into the passageway.

Tommy motioned with the guns for the guards to follow Jason. They complied with his silent order. As they left the passageway, Jason's prediction came true and the remainder of the rooms caved in.

Epilogue

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