Wrecked – Chapter 6
Sgt. Dewey Beverage & suspected Taliban soldier Akhbar Ali have washed up on a deserted island.
Chapter Six – Deception
CIA agent Chloe Mulligan’s words race through Akhbar’s head as he enters the Taliban compound.
“To stop a snake, you have to cut off the head. Inject this serum into Abdul al-Roqu’s arm and he’ll be dead hours later, throwing their entire operation into chaos.”
A henchman places a hand on Akhbar’s chest and he tugs the collar of his white lab coat.
“Greetings, I’m Dr. Rahmdan. I’m here to see Mr. al-Roqu?”
Khaled, the brother of Akhbar’s crush Venus Cafe waitress Jerrah Noor, turns the corner with a grin. “Akhbar! When did you get a medical degree in between shifts operating your kebab cart?”
Akhbar quickly thinks up a snappy rejoinder: “Uhhhhhhh…”
Dewey is pacing the beach while Akhbar sits & watches the sun rise, their second straight night without sleep coming and going, leaving them bleary-eyed and increasingly erratic.
“We’re being hunted,” Dewey murmurs.
“I do not think that is the case,” Akhbar insists.
“We’re being hunted by this…beast. And it’s either us or him.”
“Wild animals are more afraid of us than we are of them. If we just leave it–“
Dewey picks up his spear and heads into the jungle. Akhbar quickly clambers to his feet, brushing the sand off him and picks up his spear, following the Army sergeant.
“And just where do you think you’re going?”
Dewey doesn’t look back. “I’m gonna find that beast and kill it.”
“What about circumnavigating the island to see if it’s really a peninsula.”
“It can wait.”
Akhbar shakes his head and follows Dewey as he hacks his way deeper into the dark jungle.
Akhbar is seated in a small cell in the Taliban compound when a young boy brings him a plate of cold rice and cup of warm water.
Akhbar scoops the rice up hungrily with his hand and looks up at the boy. “I need you to get a message to a woman in Ogra.”
The boy stares back blankly.
“She’s a white woman. American. Her name’s Chloe Mulligan. She works for the CIA.”
The boy’s eyes light up, he pulls a pistol out of the back of his pants and points it at Akhbar’s head, as Akhbar falls backwards, hands up. “GUARD!” the boy hollers.
The henchman runs in. “Yes, General?”
The boy narrows his eyes at Akhbar. “Get Abdul. The prisoner is CIA.”
“General?” Akhbar stammers. “You’re, like, nine.”
“Yeah, I’m behind schedule.” The boy pockets the gun and lights a loose cigarette. “Don’t remind me.”
Sgt. Dewey Beverage is on his knees, running a handful of loose animal scat through his fingers, his steely gaze directed toward a series of caves on the jungle mountainside. “We’re close.”
Akhbar looks on with queasy concern. “Are you going to wash your hands.”
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