CHAPTER FIVE HUNDRED and SEVENTY-SEVEN
There wasn’t space for Alex to turn over or around. Instead, she started the even slower journey back twenty feet to where she thought she’d see something that might be an off switch.
“Sir, it’s Margaret.”
“Yes?” Alex, Vince, and Seth said in unison.
“Um … okay,” Margaret said. “I was referring to the Fey.”
“Roger that,” Vince and Seth said in near unison.
“But actually, if you’re listening,” Margaret said, “which of course you would be … um …”
“Peaches?” Vince asked.
“Yes, sir,” Margaret said. “That’s not the release. The one the Fey is climbing back toward.”
“Oh?” Alex said. Her head dropped to her hands to take a few deep breaths.
“I don’t think so,” Margaret said. “The catch appears to be next to Mr. O’Malley’s left foot.”
Seth turned to look.
“I see it,” Seth said. “Vince?”
“Yes, sir, I’m backing up,” Vince said.
After a few moments, Seth was able to belly crawl backward toward the object Margaret was talking about.
“Do we have gas masks?” Seth asked.
“In your backpack, sir,” Matthew said.
“We assess that gas is not what this chamber is about,” Margaret said. “I cannot send you an image but there are wood spikes that come out of the walls. It will hearten you to know that there is more than one Nazi body stuck there.”
“Tunnels of death,” Seth said under his breath.
“This appears to be correct,” Pierre said. “I realized that I have heard of this place. It is an replica on the ‘Subtarreaneis Mortis’ in Rome.”
“Really?” Seth asked.
“Does that mean something to you?” Leena asked. “Sorry. He’s been saying that for a while.”
“Yes, in fact, it does,” Seth said.
He pushed down the lever in the wall and crawled to the chamber opening. Without hesitation, he turned so his feet dangled into the chamber before dropping down.
“We’re safe here,” Seth said. “If this tunnel is a replica of the ‘Subtarreanis Mortis’, we have three more chambers to go.”
“Any news from up top?” Vince asked.
“You won’t believe me if I told you,” Matthew said.
“Try us,” Alex ordered.
“Trece and White Boy are here,” Matthew said. “We were about to open the tunnel to talk to them when Pershing and his entire team arrived by chopper. To review this as some kind of a heritage site.”
“Oh great,” Raz said from the root cellar. “I wondered if that might come through.”
“Our little Polish government official is furious, but there’s little he can do,” Matthew said with a chuckle.
“Good to have friends,” Alex said.
“Good to have lawyers,” Royce said.
“They were Nadia’s,” Alex said. “Her company has an entire departments of world class lawyers on staff. They took it on. With Sandy’s permission, of course.”
“Friends with brilliant timing,” Ben said.
Alex dropped into the chamber. The wall on her right was embedded with at least twenty of what looked like lodge pole pine trees sharpened to deadly points. The last foot of tree and the horrible points stuck out of the wall. There were four human remains on the points.
Seth knelt next the remains while Vince stood next to him.
“German soldiers,” Seth said. “Can you take photos?”
Denver Cereal continues tomorrow…
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