Thursday, April 26, 2007

What would you do ? Part lll

Hi All;
I'm back again with another 'cliff-hanger' situation where you the author, have got to figure out the most plausible way to get the hero's out of thier latest peril where 'death' has decided to have another go at them.
In the box for this installment are my two favorite characters from my McCarthy Family Mystery Series, Mick McCarthy and his girlfriend Bridget Connolly.
This is a scene I'm working on for the next McCarthy Family Mystery, the Scrimshaw, due out in the Fall of 2008.
Our protagonists have been tracking down the killer or killers, whose actions are linked to a 110 year-old mystery. They've just gotten through searching an old country inn and have turned up a few seemingly random and unrelated objects. Unable to make sense of them or determine how they fit into the mystery, they have decided to give up and go back to their apartment in Cambridge, MA.
What they don't know, is that they are much closer to the truth than they realize. In fact too close for the comfort of some very ruthless people. And they are about to find this out in the deadliest of terms.

Your mission, mystery solvers - should you choose to accept it - is to come up with a plausible way for Mick and Bridget to save their hides working with only the information provided in the following scene. Anything goes except having them bop him over the head and run away (I mean we've got to make it interesting!) Oh, and no... they can not be rescued by space aliens. (This is not the X-Files!)

Other then that ... unleash your intellect and have at it.
One more thing. The scene is actually in three parts, so you can plot out a set-up to save them, but it doesn't actually have to produce results in this go around. I'll be back in a week or so with the next part of the plan they come up with and you can match yours against it towards the final conclusion.

As Holmes would say, "the game is afoot".

The first scene - An old barn outside a country inn

Mick and Bridget smiled at one another and Mick said, " c'mon babe. We better get a move on if we wanna’ get back to Cambridge and pick up couple of Vitto's great meatball subs, before he closes."
They walked across the street to where thier BSA 650 motorcycle rested against the barn.
Mick pulled the ignition key out of the watch pocket of his jeans, but it slipped through his fingers and landed in the soft dirt.
Without thinking, Bridget bent down to pick it up and as she did something struck the side of the barn, exactly where her head had been a second before.
She'd started straightened up with a puzzled look on her face when Mick jumped off the bike and threw himself on top of her just as a second thud threw a small shower of splinters out from the side of the old barn.
" Mickey . . . what -? "
" Sniper! " Mick hissed swiveling his head around frantically. " He's using a silencer and probably got a scope too. "
A third shot kicked up dirt just inches from the toe of Mick's right boot.
He wasn’t waiting for more. He got up in a crouch and pulled Bridget towards the half open barn door. " Quick - inside! "
He looked around. Whoever had the sniper's rifle was a pro. And he wouldn't just give up and go away. He'd be coming for them.
Mick pulled Bridget towards the back of the barn. A solid wall. They were trapped. No way out and the .38 Police Special that Pop had given him, still rested out of reach in the bike's saddlebags. A definite bullet through the brain if he made a try for that. Sh*t!

He looked around again. " C'mon Bridge, " he whispered, " the loft. "
He pushed her ahead of him up the rickety ladder and into the far corner where several old hay bales were stacked amid disarranged piles of rusty farm tools and rotting leather harnesses. They burrowed under a pile of old burlap sacks behind the hay bales, watching the thin slit of light from the partially open barn door.
Then they waited - but not for long.

Mick gripped Bridget's hand and she unconsciously held her breath as they heard the barn door being slowly rolled open and then closed all the way. The dim sliver of fading sunlight disappeared.

In the semidarkness they heard the sound of footsteps approaching and the unmistakable sound of heavy bolt being drawn back on a sniper rifle.

The footsteps reached the foot of the ladder to the loft and then stopped.
It was silent for a moment and then the sound of heavy breathing and the faint tap of shoes on wooden rungs as someone began to climb.


Ric Wasley
Shadow of Innocence
Kunati - April 2007
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