Back at the chateau… Baldwin had called Annelie and Rock to come back, they are having trouble getting time for their honeymoon. “The photos have come through,” said Baldwin, and he showed everyone. “Wow, it looks like that jet exploded when it hit the ground,” said Rock, “could they survive such a blast?” “There are “cocoons” in the jet that are just right for keeping people safe, and they have been tested even in a large explosion,” explained Baldwin, “hopefully they used them, if they did, they will be safe. But here are more photos.”
And he handed them out to everyone. “Those look like ruins of some kind,” said Carine, “that is what they were looking for.” “Yes,” said Baldwin, “so that is where we will go looking, after a brief stop at the crash site. We will use my new sand quads, specially designed for desert terrain.” “What is this ‘we’ you keep saying boss,” said Rock, “you are not going along on this, too dangerous. What if that plane was shot down by someone?”
“True,” said Candace, “and, why have we not received any signals from the team? I do not like that at all.” “Yes, that part is disturbing,” admitted Baldwin, “only two choices for that, they all died in the crash, or something is blocking their signals.” “I prefer to think something is blocking their signals,” said Carine, “and maybe that is why the jet crashed. Could something be there that messed up the computers on the jet causing it to crash?”
“I was wondering about that too,” said Rock, “so if we go looking for them, we would have to land further away from the crash site to be safe.” “Yes, that is a good thought,” said Baldwin, “flying high over the area was fine, it is when they went in lower that they crashed. I have a plane over there now checking for any odd signals.” Sure enough, after a couple of hours the information came in that there is some kind of magnetic source surrounding the area of the ruins and our jet had penetrated that area just along one edge of it.
“Hmm,” said Baldwin, “that covers a fairly large area. We will need to be very careful, it means someone is watching that area.” “There you go with that ‘we’ again boss,” said Rock, “you need to stay home to look after things, to keep us safe.” Baldwin just looked at him. “Rock is right hon,” said Shirley, “we just got married, I do not want to be a widow yet. Besides, you need to be here in case there is trouble so you can send help.”
“Yeah, guess you are right,” he said reluctantly, “and I will be giving you some extra tools to use, things that will not be affected by that magnetic source, whatever it is.” “That sounds good,” said Annelie, “now, which of us will be going?” “I will keep you here to watch the computer Annelie,” said Baldwin, “that is going to be important on this one. Rock, Candace, Carine, Kara and Chung will go on this one. Chung’s knowledge might be very beneficial on this case.”
So Baldwin got busy getting things in order for their trip, they are going to leave tonight, hopefully landing under cover of darkness might help them to evade detection any observers in the area. Plus they would be able to check out the crash site before daylight. Planning is very important in this case since it might not be easy getting us out of there. Then Baldwin noticed Candace still having problems with her arm.
“Candace, how is that arm doing?”, he asked. “It is okay,” she said, rather unconvincingly. “You will stay home on this one too,” said Baldwin, “too dangerous when you only have one arm to use.” “I can use it, just slowly,” she protested. “It is better to give it more time,” said Carine. “True,” said Annelie, “that’s really why Baldwin is keeping me back, because of my hip.”
“I guess you are right,” she admitted, “but I don’t feel very useful here.” Soon the rest of the team were on their way to a certain city where helicopters will take them to their destination. Finally there they were, in the middle of the Sahara desert, supplies unloaded and the helicopters now flying away. Apparently these sand quads would be okay driving into that magnetic area and sure enough, they made it to the crash site without problems.
Carine and Kara watched all around while Rock and Chung looked for any bodies. They finally concluded that the plane exploded after the crash and everyone must have made it out, which means they went to the ruins, so that is what they would need to do as well. Did the others go voluntarily, or as prisoners?
To Be Continued.
©2022 Steve McLeod.