Chapter 4

Danger   Skies

The next day, Rob said that the survivors would all be heading through a subway tunnel that was unknown to the black-suited soldiers. The subway tunnel would hopefully get the survivors to the airport. On the way to the subway tunnel, I asked Rob, “Do you know who those soldiers are?” 

Rob thought for a second and then spoke, “Sorry, but I don’t know who they are.”

“Maybe Nazis,” I guessed. 

“Nazis?!” Rob exclaimed. “They are gone for good. I think you’ve read way too many World War II books, kid.”

And the next thing I knew, we were on the train waiting for it to take us to the airport. At noon, the subway took off. It took a couple of hours, but the train eventually took us out into the sunlight. No more dark, creepy tunnels!

It felt good to be out in the light again, but something else frightened me. We were out in plain sight of the enemy. “This is suicidal.” I thought.  Apparently, I was not the only one to think this.”What if the soldiers find us?” said Ava thinking out loud. 

“Trust me, they won’t,” comforted Rob.

The train launched forward, stopped and tripped us all. I stood up and helped my friends get up. We walked out onto the street. “Are we there already?” Mary asked. We looked around. Other people were gathering on the street.

 A whole unit of soldiers ran up to us. “It has been a while, Rob. Haven’t seen you all year! You doing alright?” 

“Eric! Yes, I am doing fine. Everybody find shelter,¨ Rob commanded. The survivors all crept into abandoned buildings, hotels, homes, apartments, and basically everything not bombed. A couple of soldiers, Ava, Wyatt, Mary, Ernest, Finn and I all stayed in a roofless house. Rob came in and joined us later on when it got dark.

“We will leave tomorrow, to the airport,” He explained. ¨We have to walk by foot.” “Can’t we steal a car?” Ernest asked. 

“No,” a soldier said. “The enemy will hear us.”

Rob stood and looked at everyone in the house. ¨We must get sleep,¨ He said. “We will have to walk far tomorrow.”

I laid down on the rubble of the roof. Even the yoga mats were better than this. I tossed and turned but could not fall asleep. Eventually, I was the last one still awake. I sat up and looked around.

The damage was done. The only other people I knew were Finn, Ernest, Wyatt, Mary, Ava, and Rob. Everything else was gone. I wasn’t sure if my parents were ok. Or my dog, Rex.  My house, my sister, everything I cared for was gone.

The next day was rough. I had not slept the night before and we all have to hike down the road silently for hours. By late morning the fifty or so survivors, the unit of soldiers, my friends, and I, all stopped to rest for a bit. I sat down, Ernest and Ava did so too, but Finn, Mary, and Wyatt didn’t. They stayed standing and looked at each other so Ernest, Ava and I looked at each other. 

The group was just about to continue walking to the airport when I heard a piercing loud shriek from above and people patrolling. I stared down the street and saw about 30 armed enemy soldiers, each with a black gas mask and gun.

Some of the soldiers shot their guns and red beams of light blasted forward knocking some survivors to the ground. The small militia we had shot our guns too, but the bullets that came forth just bounced off the black-suited soldiers’ vests. They were bulletproof! At this point, we knew we would die in seconds. I am guessing they had some sort of bionic hearing aid because Ava screamed loudly in terror and the soldiers fell to the ground covering their ears.

Then I heard it again. The shriek echoed in my head bouncing off my skull. I looked for the origin of the noise and found it – a ginormous blackbird the size of a garbage truck flew from his perch on a damaged building. He was wearing a gas mask that was probably made for him and a soldier sat on top wearing the same gear as the others. 

“What the heck is that?” Rob exclaimed muttering a curse word under his breath. He grabbed a rifle from his sack and started to aim at the monster. Rob pulled the trigger. A bullet blasted from the tip of the gun and hit the bird creature on the side. It turned to its attacker unharmed and screeched. He folded his wings back and dove forward toward Rob.

“Holy Mackerel,” Ernest said pushing his glasses up his nose. 

“Run!” Rob yelled to us. I backed up from the screaming monster as he dove through the sky, almost knocking Wyatt down with a gust of wind from his wings. 

I pulled Wyatt back to safety and watched as Rob faced the terrible bird. The bullets coming from his rifle seemed to do no damage to the bird, only aggravate it even more. My friends and I tried to find safety from both the giant bird and the soldiers. 

We finally hid behind a big slab of concrete sticking from the ground. All of us peeked out from behind it except Mary, who had seen enough of the brutal war.

Rob was still having a hard time slaying the giant bird. A small burn on Rob’s shoulder from a laser beam slowed his reflexes. Wyatt, normally being adventurous, went out, grabbed a dead black suited soldier’s gun and shot lasers rapidly at the bird. 

He got a few good shots, and even though he injured the bird, it kept flying. “What the flip!” He yelled (He always said that almost like it was his catchphrase.). 

“Wyatt!” Rob yelled. “I told you to run!” 

“But the lasers are the only thing that can injure the bird,” Wyatt said. 

“Then give it to me,” Rob said. Wyatt tossed the gun to Rob and ran to catch up with us. We stopped running after we were a safe distance away and watched Rob fight the beast. We saw the giant bird use his talons to stab Rob in the chest. 

Rob screamed in agony. The bird picked up Rob with his talons and dropped him. Now Rob wasn’t moving. “Rob!” I cried. I tried to run to Rob but Finn pulled me back. 

“It is too late Dylan.”

“No, it’s not! We can save him!”

“No, we can’t. Rob told us to run and save ourselves.” Finn said

“No, he didn’t say to save ourselves.”

“Well, he would have wanted us to run and live.”

“NO!” I started to run over to Rob, but while I was running, an explosion went off. I went flying backward unconscious.

I woke up with my friends circling around me. “Is he dead?” asked Finn.

“Nope. He seems alright.” said Wyatt. 

“Where is Rob?!” I said in lots of pain. 

“He’s gone!” Mary said her voice wavering. 

“It is your fault!” I yelled at Finn, getting up. “It is your fault he is dead.”

“No, it is not!”

“Yes, it is. If you didn’t grab me, I could’ve gone and save Rob!”

“I tried to save you, and I did. I don’t care!”

“If you don’t care, then why are you mad?” After I said that I punched him in the face. Finn got mad and shoved me down. 

When he did that, my phone fell out of my pocket. Then I realized, we could get help! There is hope! I grabbed my phone and tried to text my friends. Maybe they were sick during the bombings. None of them answered. 

“What are you doing?” asked Finn, still a little mad

“I’m trying to get help.”

I tried contacting my parents. Nothing. My sister. Nothing. Eventually, I called the police. A few minutes later, they arrived with stolen Nazi guns and masks. 

They gave us gas masks and spare clothes. I saw a backpack through the broken window of an apartment and filled it with the stuff the police gave us. They gave us a ride to the police station and we stayed there for the night. There, at the police station, they let us sleep in prisoner cells, with real beds! The beds made it easier to sleep, but I couldn’t sleep, because of the guilt from the death of Rob.