New to Quest Five?
The stories are best enjoyed when read in order beginning with May 1, 2009.

Welcome To Quest Five
Allison Beaumont is having trouble finding a job after college until one day the wealthy and powerful Joseph Candle offers her a job at his rather unusual corporation, where mistakes can lead to bare bottomed spankings. Adopting the alias of Virginia West, she joins four highly skilled colleagues, racing around the globe in search of mysterious treasures, but wherever she goes, trouble is sure to follow.
Note: Some stories contain scenes of a sexual nature, corporal punishment, non-consensual corporal punishment, and strong language which some reader's may find offensive. If you feel this material might be inappropriate for you please move on to another blog by clicking the next blog link at the top of the page.

April 13, 2010

Losing Control: Taken

There was anger in the room. Mom was angry at her parents. Dad glared at me with anger in his eyes, not at Mom as you might expect. Steve blinked back his anger at Mom and at me. Jenny appeared angry with everyone, not much of a surprise considering her recent adventure. I was not angry thought, not at them or anyone else. Mom's confession was not a surprise to me, I had suspected if for long enough.

"You said your father was dead," Steve said, piercing the tense bubble in the room

Jenny spoke on the heel of his words, saying, "You're nothing more than a bunch of two faced liars, the whole lot of you. I can't believe I was worried about losing your respect."

"There is a difference between lying to protect others and lying to hurt them," I said, defending my family and myself. Jenny's face darkened in response and she wisely remained silent with Steve giving her a look I knew all to well as dangerous to sitting comfortably.

"He wasn't always the man he is," Mom said, looking at me as if no one else was in the room. "My mother's death changed him."

"Because she didn't die," I said.

"Death isn't a gray area," Dad said. "Losing a loved one is never easy, but pretending they never died doesn't help anyone."

"It's not pretending," I said, looking at Mom. "I've seen her and talked to her and so has Mom."

Dad looked at Mom, but his eyes revealed his disbelief. A sound from the stairs turned all our heads to watch Geoff reveal himself and walk over to me. He rested his small hand on my arm and said, "I've seen her too."

"She told you who she was?" I asked, surprised she would have done so, although I could not say exactly why.

Geoff nodded and said, "It's okay. She told me how I can fix everything."

I stared at my nephew as his words sank into reasoning. He was the reason I could not just hide away and stay out of caves. The notes I had left to myself were suddenly making more sense than I wanted. If he was the reason, it could only mean he was going to somehow end up in the cave and my ethereal grandmother had been secretly preparing him for the task ahead of him. It made the sick sense of betrayal. She had manipulated me with half truths, a fact I knew too well, but I had somehow missed the obvious completion. The shattering of the window to my right, sunk the feeling of being too late into my stomach even as I listened to the sound of a cannister clunking against the floor.

The room filled with white smoke. The sounds of confusion felt muffled beneath the pounding of heavy boots spreading into the room. I grabbed for my nephew's arm only to find he was already gone. A firm hand grabbed my shoulder, pushing me back into the chair and the cold metal of gun barrel pressed against the back of my neck. I pushed all my weight back into the chair tipping it off the front legs and sending my would be assaulter scrambling to the floor, while I rolled to my feet. The smoke obscured everything.

"Geoff!" I said, hearing footsteps heading toward the kitchen. Another hand grabbed my arm from behind. I allowed reflexes to control my reactions, turning my direction back toward the arm's source and grabbing blindly for the weapon I knew was in the other hand. The unknown figure tried to pull away, until my elbow connected with his jaw, stunning him long enough for me to tear the gun from his hand and reverse my direction away from him.

I ran toward the kitchen, stumbling slightly over the dining room chairs in the path. The smoke was thinner as I burst through the kitchen door, keeping low, just in case someone was waiting for me on the other side. The kitchen was empty, but the side door to the outside was swinging open, telling me someone had passed through it only moments before. I checked the clip inside the gun, verifying my suspicion that the invaders were associated with the man in the shadows. Slapping the clip back into the gun, I moved quickly to the swinging door and poked my head outside.

A bullet whizzed passed my head, splintering the door frame next to me. I ducked back inside and spun toward the kitchen door just in time to see it swing open. Two goons walked through the door intent on me, but I shot them both instead of waving. They both went down for a short nap and I turned my attention back to the outside. A quick peek revealed a black van with two goons at the front and a more familiar goon standing by the open side door and staring my direction, Mark.

"It would be a lot easier if you'd just come with us," Mark said.

"You'll live longer if you stop what you're doing," I said.

"You probably believe that, but as usual, you've got everything wrong," Mark said.

Another round of shots pounded against the door frame next to me. I ducked back inside, considering options. They obviously wanted us all, but had decided my nephew was most important. Surrendering was tempting because at least that way I would be with them, but on their terms it might not matter. I had to keep myself free enough to make the choice I was giving myself a second chance at making. I was not ready to give up my family to those whose intentions I could not be certain about, but the suspicion my older self had known this was something I could not change, hovered in the back of my thoughts.

With the two goons at the front of van covering the side exit from the kitchen, I was essentially blocked from exiting in that direction. If I was to stand any chance at stopping them from taking Geoff, I would have to find another way around and fast. I pushed myself off from the door frame and headed back through the kitchen door into the main part of the house. The smoke was clearing, but still thick enough to make seeing difficult.

A noise from the front door caught my attention. Someone was trying to open it. I pushed through the dining room chairs once more and turned the corner to see my parents being held at gunpoint and escorted outside. The goons taking them caught sight of me leaving me no time to consider the best course of action. I raised my gun and shot all three of them without regard for the possibility of hitting my parents. The goons dropped to the floor and my parents stared at me as if I had suddenly turned into Lizzie Borden.

"Stay here," I said, kicking one of the goons just to make sure he was not playing possum.

"What do you think you're doing?" Mom asked before Dad clamped a hand over her mouth and pulled further inside the entryway.

The rumble of the van's engine told me I had little time left to do whatever I was going to do to stop them. I pushed passed my parents out the front door, leading the way with the gun in my hand. I blindly squeezed off rounds in the general direction of the van as I exited the alcove of cover provided by the entry to my brother's house. A stray bullet whipped through my hair, buzzing my ear and leaving me with a deafening ring. I stumbled for a moment, the world tilting unevenly.

I blinked, watching Jenny being pushed inside the van as if in slow motion. Beyond her, I could see my nephew struggling and Steve's grim, worried face being forced back into shadows. The goons who had taken them, climbed aboard and Mark turned to look at me, waiting his turn to disappear. I shook off the disorientation and squeezed off a well aimed round, slamming into Mark's upper torso. His mouth gaped open at me as he fell backward into the van. Running forward, I tried to get an angle on the driver to force a longer confrontation, but a hand pulled Mark inside the van and slammed the side door closed before I could get anything more than a wild glimpse.

The van peeled out of the driveway and sped off down the neighborhood street, leaving me standing in the middle of the lawn. I dropped the gun to my side and stared after the van trying to decide whether to pursue or regroup. The sound of my parents exiting the house, decided for me and I spun to face them. We all shared in the anger and blame and the expressions on their faces revealed they knew it as well as I did.

I pulled my phone out of my pocket, turning it on, and Dad asked, "Are you calling the police?"

"No,"I said, pressing the button to call Tom.

"I doubt it would help," Mom said while my phone was ringing.

I ignored them, working out the course of actions to be taken. The ringing without answer was beginning to concern me, until Tom answered, "Yeah." In the background I could hear the sound of some sort of an alarm.

"Are you at the office?" I asked.

"Yeah, we were—

"Great," I said, talking over him. "Get Kyra and pull up a satellite image of my location. There was a van here less than five minutes ago and I want it tracked."

"I'm afraid that's going to be impossible," Tom said.

"What are you talking about?" I asked.

"We were attacked. The entire computer system has been taken offline and it will take Kyra hours to get it back up. We lost the staff and Brian in the attack," Tom said.

"What do you mean lost?' I said, panicking at the thought of something happening to Brian after I had practically dragged him into Quondam.

"They were taken," Tom said. "What happened to you?"

"Mark showed up at my brother's with a small team. They took my brother, his wife and my nephew," I said.

Tom asked, "Are you alright?"

"No," I said, "and I'm not going to be until we get them all back."

"Understood. I take it your parents are with you?" Tom said.

"Yeah," I said, staring at my parents and wondering if they had any other shocking news to tell me.

"Better bring them in here," Tom said, "I had a security detail on your brother's house but they aren't responding."

"Can Kyra track a cellphone?" I asked.

"Sure, as long as she has the number and the phone is on," Tom said.

"Alright," I said, walking back toward the house. "I'll be back there within an hour."

I ended the call and stepped back inside the house. Kneeling down, next to the unconscious bodies of the goons who had grabbed my parents, I patted one down until I located his phone. I pulled it out and downloaded its data into my own. I repeated the process with the other two and put all the phones back where they belonged with my parents watching me in silence. I stood up and brushed busted glass and dust off my pant legs.

"We need to get out of here," I said and headed toward the Camaro parked in the street.

"Are you sure that's wise?" Dad asked.

"We can't stay here and you can bet these people will keep trying to acquire us as long as we're unprotected," I said.

"Your grandfather can't protect us," Mom said.

"I know," I said, offering a sympathetic smile, "but Tom can."

"Who's Tom?" Dad asked.

"You'll see," I said, pulling out my car keys and unlocking the doors. "Let's go."

2 comments:

  1. Ash, fast and furious, I'm loving this.
    I'm glad that Allison is coming into her own, not a moment to soon.
    Great writing dear girl.
    Warm hugs,
    Paul.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ash,
    great episode, like all the good communication between everyone,glad to see her parents staying calm in that situation. not that I had any doubt they wouldn't (LOL) Allison did good taking control of the situation once again. good story
    thanks
    AL :)

    ReplyDelete