#50 – Kruger!… It’s Brent ..

In spite of his brave words, Jamie found he was retreating from the voice. He turned to look at the sea again.
Was drowning an easier way to die? He watched the reefs tearing viciously t
the demon waves breaking over them and he suddenly saw something else, something beyond the waves.
He could not understand what it was. “Banda, look …”
Far out at sea an impenetrable gray wall was moving toward them, blown by the powerful westerly winds.
“It’s the sea mis!” Banda exclaimed. “It comes in two or three times a week.”
While they were talking, the mis moved closer, like a gigantic gray curtain sweeping across the horizon,
blotting out the sky.
The voices had moved closer, too. “Den dousant! Damn this mis! Another slowdown. The bosses ain’t
gonna like this___”
“We’ve got a chance!” Jamie said. He was whispering now.
“What chance?”
‘The mis! They won’t be able to see us.”
‘That’s no help. It’s going to lift sometime, and when it does we’re still going to be right here. If the guards
can’t move through the land mines, neither can we. You try to cross this desert in the mis and you won’t go
ten yards before you’re blown to pieces. You’re looking for one of your miracles.”
“You’re damned right I am,” Jamie said.
The sky was darkening overhead. The mis was closer, covering the sea, ready to swallow up the shore. It
had an eerie, menacing look about it as it rolled toward them, but Jamie thought exultantly, It’s going to save
A voice suddenly called out, “Hey! You two! What the hell are you doin’ there?”
Jamie and Banda turned. At the top of a dune about a hundred yards away was a uniformed guard carrying
a rifle. Jamie looked back at the shore. The mis was closing in fast.
“You! You two! Come here,” the guard yelled. He lifted his rifle.
Jamie raised his hands. “I twisted my foot,” he called out. “I can’t walk.”
“Stay where you are,” the guard ordered. “I’m comin’ to get you.” He lowered his rifle and started moving
toward them. A
quick look back showed that the mis had reached the edge of the shore, and was coming in swiftly.
“Run!” Jamie whispered. He turned and raced, toward the beach, Banda running close behind him. “Stop!”
A second later they heard the sharp crack of a rifle, and the sand ahead of them exploded. They kept
running, racing to meet the great dark wall of the fog. There was another rifle shot, closer this time, and
another, and the next moment the two men were in total darkness. The sea mis licked at them, chilling them,
smothering them. It was like being buried in cotton. It was impossible to see anything.
The voices were muffled now and distant, bouncing off the mis and coming from all directions. They could
hear other voices calling to one another.
“Kruger!… It’s Brent___Can you hear me?”
“I hear you, Kruger___”


Copyright © 1982 by Sheldon Literary Trust

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