Right, let’s get back into the swing of things and continue with this story, using Linda G Hill‘s SoCS prompt (provided by Joey from Joeyfully Stated while Linda is away, meeting her adoring fans on a book signing tour) which means that this week, our mission is to include;
” “save/safe” Use one or both. If you start and end with either of them, you’ll get bonus points. “
That doesn’t sound too difficult…
The Accumulator, part forty five.
Scene: Exterior of Carlisle’s safe house at night.
The unremarkable Victorian terraced house is immersed in the shadows, midway between two streetlights in a nondescript suburban residential road, the number, 42 is just visible against the peeling green paint of the front door, as the moon breaks through thickening banks of cloud.
Unlike many of its neighbours, which are warmly lit and occupied, have well-tended gardens and cars parked outside, no lights show in any of the widows of number 42, the tiny yard is untidy and overgrown and to the casual observer the house appears deserted.
However, this hasn’t deterred the four men in a car parked in front of the lockup garages just up the street, who are keeping a very close eye on it, indeed and the camera now focusses on them.
We watch from outside Carlisle’s house as the men climb out of the car, quietly close the doors and walk towards us. Stopping at the low wall and rusted iron gate which separates the house from the pavement, three pull guns from inside their identical black leather jackets and one swings a pump-action shotgun down from a shoulder strap.
The lead man nods to the others and they keep a watchful eye on the street as he steps forward and kneels in front of the door, places his gun on the step and takes a bunch of strange looking keys from a pocket. Selecting one, he quickly goes to work on the lock until there is an almost inaudible click and the door swings open.
Now the director gets all creative again and we cut to…
Scene: A four way split-screen view of;
Carlisle – upstairs in the middle of the empty front bedroom, gun in one hand, phone in the other, eyes fixed on the screen;
Patrick – standing by the door in the kitchen, lit by the glow of a second mobile phone on the table, its screen showing a view of the hallway outside;
Adam – sitting on a wooden chair in the bathroom at the top of the stairs, facing the closed door, arms outstretched in front of him, an expression of concentration on his face.
The fourth view is of the front door from inside the house and, as the door silently swings open, the image expands to fill the lower half of the screen, as Carlisle, Patrick and Adam are shuffled into line at the top.
The leader, One, rises from the ground and, pistol held in front of him in an overly-dramatic, two-handed grip, sidles into the hallway. He sweeps the gun up the darkened staircase, back to the closed kitchen door ahead of him, then he slowly moves down the hall.
Two follows close behind and immediately takes up position by the door to the living room, on the left-hand side of the hallway.
Three creeps slowly up the stairs, shotgun swinging back and forth between the darkness ahead of him and the landing above, where the banister rail is silhouetted against moonlight coming in through a window in the back bedroom, the only room where the door is open (intentional, of course, designed by Carlisle to reduce the night vision of anyone climbing the stairs).
Closing the front door, Four watches Three get to the top of the stairs and flatten himself against the wall next to the bathroom door, then he follows and moves past him, bracing himself against the landing wall opposite the front bedroom.
We see all four men in position, the briefest of pauses, then;
One reaches for the kitchen door. He grips the handle in his left hand, raises his gun hand for a second, signalling Two to be ready, then brings it down sharply as he twists the handle and kicks open the door.
Two does the same at the living room; kicking open the door and moving inside fast, his silenced pistol spits rapid shots into the corners of the room, before he dives sideways, firing a final shot into the wall behind the door as it swings slowly shut.
Waiting at the top of the stairs for this cue, Three takes a step sideways and fires the shotgun at the centre of the bathroom door.
At the same time, Four lifts his right foot and kicks in the bedroom door. A burst of gunfire comes from inside, just as he fires into the darkness, but none of the rounds are aimed at him, so he takes a step into the room and looks down to see a mobile phone…
On the top three screens, we see;
Carlisle – still staring at the phone screen, he watches as Two dives across the living room below him and tracks the movement with the gun in his other hand. As soon as Two stops moving, Carlisle fires half a dozen rounds straight through the floor as he throws the phone into the corner of the room and swings round to face Four, who looks in confusion at the phone’s cracked screen and, too late, sees movement from the corner of his eye. Carlisle puts a bullet between his eyes and he collapses.
We see Patrick, as he desperately grabs for the gun, after the door explodes inward and One follows it, he tries to jam his finger into the trigger guard and the weapon goes off, horribly loud in the enclosed space of the kitchen. He clamps his other hand on the man’s neck, forcing him round so they are face to face.
The gun goes off again, but their flailing sends the shot into the ceiling. Then Patrick hits One with a jolt of power and the man is thrown against the door behind him, falling heavily onto the kitchen counter and sliding to the linoleum floor unconscious.
Finally, Adam; sensing the man’s presence outside the bathroom, his eyes open and his hands snap upward, palms facing forward. A flash of silver ripples hits the door and goes through it in an unstoppable explosion of splintered, burning wood and molten lead from the man’s shotgun blast.
Three practically disintegrates in the lethal storm, (but only from the knees up, his feet and lower legs, boots intact, remain standing outside the door) just a few lumps of bone and shreds of material can be identified, after the cloud of blood clears and the beam of a flashlight cuts through the gloom from below.
Then Patrick’s voice, shaky but in control, for now.
“Jesus fucking Christ. Adam? You ok?”
“I’m ok, yes. Think I might have overcooked that one a bit.”
“A bit? Yeah, I’d say so.”
Carlisle steps out of the bedroom, reloading his pistol and looks at the devastation on the stairs.
“Bloody hell, Adam, you made sure of him, didn’t you? I’m fine, too, thanks for your concern, I’m touched, really I am. Now, did we manage to keep one alive?”
Patrick nods, his face pale and strained.
“Yes, the one in the kitchen is still breathing. I only gave him a small shock, but he’ll be out for a while yet.”
“Right, let’s get the fucker tied up and find their wheels, we can’t question him here after…this…”
Carlisle gestures around him at the gore-splattered walls and points to the pair of disembodied feet on the landing.
“You also better hope that poor sod wasn’t the driver, if the keys were in his pocket, we’re screwed, hahaha”
With that, Carlisle picks his way down the stairs past the worst of the carnage, mutters something about there being some rope under the sink and disappears into the kitchen.
Adam looks at Patrick and shrugs.
“He’s right, we’ve got to move, but I don’t think they had time to call for backup, do you? So for now, at least, I think we’re safe.”
To be continued (using next week’s prompt)…