Chapter 14 - Guard Level

Posted in By Aiden Cobb 0 comments

            He thought about driving up to Thad's residence, popping out of the car with guns blazing while the car swerved into the general direction of one of the guards. That unfortunate guard would stand like a deer in headlights being pommeled and decapitated by the car, all the while screaming as he shot his Uzi into the air. That's Hollywood's style, Aiden's. He prefers the personal approach.
            The estate's front is wide open; you can be seen driving up for miles. Having ditched the car down the road Aiden is cutting a path straight to the front door.
            Two guards. Both pop enough steroids veins are popping out of their biceps. One white, the other black and both have a hulking build. They stand watching him walk up. Neither know what to say or think; it's like a scene from one of those old movies where the guy coming to exact revenge has been walking through the desert for the past half-hour. You can almost see the heat rising from the concrete making a mirror image of Aiden, pissed-off and dressed entirely in black, heading their way.  The black guard, the one on the left, grabs his walkie-talkie and shouts something. Yes, whoever answered  is  watching the same thing and no, Thad says not to do anything. Both know a shitstorm is coming.
            Aiden plays the angles in his head but it really doesn't matter. If they haven't shot at him by now they weren't going to which makes it easier to get to Thad. He knows Thad was waiting for him. So much for that element of surprise...
            The guards aren't about to shit bricks because they have learned, have been trained, to keep their cool; but they're fucking close to it. A small seed of doubt begins to grow into a weed. Both know this can't be good.
            “Stop! Who goes there?”
            They both look at each other. The black guard who said it suddenly feels like the biggest idiot on stage during the high school play. The white guard replies with that “Dude, what'd you just say?” look.
            Aiden isn't stopping, which is confirmed when he clocks the black dude with his fist.
            TKO. Match over. The white guard responds in slow-motion with that “expletive of your choice” look on his face, followed by grabbing his gun. Both reactions are too slow.
            “SMACK!” Aiden hits the guy so hard it'll take him six months to get well enough to die.
            He walks behind the white guard to the left side of the door. No use in waiting to see if they spray bullets through wood and wouldn't you know, Thad has taste. Gotta give the guy some credit. Aiden swipes a walkie-talkie from the white guard, makes sure both are incapacitated, then pushes the lever down. The door opens an inch.
            Round Two. All point values are doubled. Taking a deep breath Aiden kicks the door open and rushes in.
            The idea that this part is like the video games enters his head. He remembers watching some kids at the electronic store wander around inside a mansion picking off zombies or mutants or guards or dogs or Nazis. Now is the moment of silence because those kids knew, as Aiden knows, they're watching him. He's not expecting expert snipers or anything; they could be but this is the domicile of a drug lord not Fort Knox so the odds that he'll be shot at instead of killed are in his favor. Hopefully. The real problem lies in the fact that there are no cheat codes and he can't hit 'reset' because he gets all pissy that the level doesn't turn out the way he wanted it to.
            Aiden shoots first in an off-direction to find out where they are. They Morse Code it back with hot lead. The schmucks.
            The China room consists of a small but expensive oak table in the center and an actual China cabinet sitting peacefully on the right. For the moment.
            BLAMM! BLAMM!
            It takes two shots. Aiden hardly ever shoots more than once. Maybe he needs to go down to the gun range. Good thing the second shot struck the guy in the face. Gotta keep moving...
            Aiden carefully rounds the corner of the room to the library when...
            BOOM! Chik-chik. BOOM!
            Two shotgun blasts. In the library. From another thug. Forget Colonel Mustard with the lead pipe...
            Aiden hits the floor. Aims at the guy's ankles. Fires with extreme prejudice.
            The guy screams and blows another hole into the library, the gun pointed at the ceiling. He  goes down easy enough.
            A staircase up ahead leads to the Thad's office. Aiden lifts himself off the maroon carpet and quietly paces across the library's hardwood floor. Bookcases line the walls and Aiden's eyes speed over their titles. Encyclopedias, Who's Who, a dictionary, thesaurus, some Stephen King books...
            Stop. “They're Eyes Were Watching God.” Hardback.
            Standing in place he reaches over and eases the book out. No other ones moved. Tiptoeing to the staircase he flings the book upward.
            A barrage of bullets decimate the book. Annihilate it. Obliterate it. Hot molten lead like shit through a goose rips pages like toilet paper with pulp shreds feather-floating in the air. Safe to say nothing is left to hit the ground.
            Aiden runs up the staircase through the floating paper shreds and fires below. Reaching the top step he crouches to the left side of the door. Gunfire ceases and nothing moves. His heart races, he clenches the gun in his hand, and takes a deep breath.
            The door to Thad's office. He has reached the Boss Level.