Chapter 4. North of Sweetgrass

Night-Trees

The two Frenchmen drove their truck through the Canadian night, their headlights splashing the darkness ahead of them, pushing the shadows of the tall trees. It had been over an hour since they had seen any traffic. After that SUV had passed them, they had been completely alone in the still night.

 

Coming around a turn, the driver slammed on the brakes. A tree stretched across the road. The truck lurched to a stop. The men were thrown forward, cursing, straining against their seat belts.

 

The men caught their breath for a moment. The passenger quickly looked through the small window into the rear of the truck, checking on their cargo.

 

They got out of the vehicle. The cold Canadian air sharpened the evening. The passenger walked up to the tree, scouting in vain how he might get around it. The driver leaned back into the cab and pulled out his GPS.

 

Before he made any progress on the GPS, the man at the truck collapsed, presaged only by the soft whisper of a single bullet.

 

The man at the tree was unable to complete his turn towards the first man when he too collapsed.

 

Immediately, Lito and Natanya came out of the woods, wearing dark jackets, gloves and hats.   Natanya carried a backpack while Lito carried a scoop stretcher.

 

Lito loaded the two bodies onto the stretcher and dragged them into the woods. Natanya, led by the splash of her flashlight, felt around the ground near the truck, and further in the woods, pocketing two bullets and the dropped GPS. Then, she took a collapsible shovel from her pack, extended it, and headed into the woods after Lito.

 

Nothing moved. After some time, the eyes of a fox at the side of the road reflected the headlights of the truck before the fox padded off into the darkness.

 

Somebody moved in the woods. Tariq Williams stepped from the shadow onto the road, also wearing a black jacket, hat and gloves. He carried his AWS collapsed into its carrying case. Tariq placed the case into the cab and looked through the small window, assessing the cargo.

 

Lito and Natanya returned from the woods throwing their gear into the truck as well. Lito climbed into the truck. Tariq and Natanya climbed over the fallen tree trunk to get to their vehicles that were hidden on the other side. Lito turned the truck around and headed back up the road away from the tree and into the night.

 

 

 (c) copyright 2016, Eric Maywar

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Follow the whole story here.

Follow Lito’s story here.

Follow Natanya’s story here.

Follow the What Started in Canada storyline here.

Eric Maywar