Children of the Cull

Free Children of the Cull by Cavan Scott

Book: Children of the Cull by Cavan Scott Read Free Book Online
Authors: Cavan Scott
Tags: Science-Fiction
all right.”
    “ Stay there ,” Moore ordered. “ I’m on my way .”
    I exchanged a worried look with Olive. “To the hub.”
    “ I need to check the cameras. ”
    “ I’m not sure. I think I saw something. Outside. ”


    T HE SILENCE IN the tunnel was stifling as we waited for Fenton to descend. He got to the bottom rung and jumped the remaining metre to the floor, his boots splashing in the shallow puddles at the bottom of the shaft.
    I shone my torch in the direction of the base, picking out crumbling concrete walls.
    “Is this place safe?” asked Beck.
    “It was built to last,” I said, even as the light found cracks in the ceiling, roots hanging down.
    The passage was about two metres from side to side, just about wide enough to drive a jeep down without removing too much of the paintwork. The floor seemed smooth enough, save for a scattering of debris from the damaged roof, which thankfully didn’t look too substantial.
    “Aren’t there any lights?” Fenton moaned.
    “Not this far out. There’s security doors that way,” I said, waving ahead. “Things get more civilised when we’re past them.”
    Brennan shone her own light into the gloom. “And how easy will that be?”
    “Well, they open from the other side...”
    “Of course they do,” groaned Fenton.
    “Then it’s a good job you’re here to help Curtis with the battering ram, isn’t it?” pointed out Brennan.
    Fenton sneered and spat on the floor, while behind him, Curtis looked like he’d bitten into a shit sandwich.
    Evidently deciding that the conversation was at an end, Brennan took the lead, marching into the darkness. “Let’s go.”
    I fell in beside her, the lights of the other’s torches bobbing behind us.
    “Are there cameras?” she asked.
    “I doubt it, not this side of the security doors.”
    “‘Doubt it’? I thought you knew this place?”
    “I performed a security review nearly two decades ago. A lot’s happened between now and then.”
    “So, this is what you do now? Travel the country, offering your services?”
    “I get around.”
    “I bet you do. But why?”
    “I told you.”
    “Because you need drugs.”
    “That’s right.”
    “To numb what exactly?”
    This was getting uncomfortable. It was time to deflect the spotlight.
    “What about you? Why do all this?”
    “All what?”
    “Playing general.”
    “I’m not playing.”
    “Sorry. I didn’t mean it like that. But how—”
    “How did I end up with this lot?”
    “She got lucky,” Fenton piped up, behind us.
    “Or I was very bad in a previous life,” Brennan shot back.
    Fenton laughed with something that almost resembled camaraderie.
    “There’s nothing much to tell. I was a kid when the world went to crap. Joined a gang to survive life on the streets, and soon learnt to use my fists to survive.”
    “Until you’d beaten everyone else into submission?”
    “For a man who doesn’t like talking about himself, you sure ask a lot of questions.”
    That shut me up. I laughed it off. I liked this woman. She was quick and smart, and told it like it was. It made what I was trying to do easier.
    Get your contact on side, soldier. Feign interest, ask questions. Get them talking about themselves. Never fails.
    Except when it does.
    We marched on, our boots scraping on the concrete, until the doors appeared in the torchlight.
    I felt my mouth go dry.
    I must have slowed up, Brennan immediately picking up on my subconscious hesitation.
    “What’s wrong?”
    “They’ve redecorated,” I replied, raising my hand to stop the group.
    “What do you mean?” Beck asked, coming to a halt.
    “There used to be double doors here.”
    We all looked ahead. A solid metal plate barred our way.
    “They upgraded their security,” Brennan said.
    Fenton wasn’t so subtle. “I knew it! I fucking knew it!”
    “Knew what?” Beck snapped.
    “This is what happens when you trust jokers like him.”

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