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VOB 2 Valley of Bones By: Mrs. Alistair MacLean (Mary Marcelle) and Milton Bowser
by Milton Bowser on 05/15/08

Sitare, Ltd. Publishers since 1961dlvmagazine.com VOB (2) VALLEY OF BONES,  by:Mrs. Alistair MacLean (Mary Marcelle) & Milton Bowser CONTINUED FROM VOB (VALLEY OF BONES VOB 2 MOVE FORWARD FOUR STEPS, SAMUEL COMMANDED. (THE ENTIRE MASS OF BEINGS BELOW MOVED FORWARD EXACTLY FOUR STEPS.) FRANK: WOW, THEY'RE TAKING YOUR COMMANDS! SAMUEL: LET ME TRY ONCE MORE. -TAKE FIVE STEPS FORWARD. (BEFORE THE WORDS WERE SPOKEN THERE WAS MOVEMENT BY THE ARMY THAT ENDED AFTER FIVE STEPS HAD BEEN TAKEN.) FRANK:TAKE THREE STEPS BACKWARD .(NOTHING HAPPENED) TAKE TWO STEPS FORWARD. (NOTHING HAPPENED) SAMUEL:TAKE TWO STEPS BACKWARD.( THE ARMY MOVED BACK TWO STEPS) NOW THEY CAN'T GO ANY FURTHER WITHOUT RUNNING INTO THE BASE OF THE MOUNTAIN; LET'S SEE WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THEY CAN'T FOLLOW ORDERS. (SAMUEL SPOKE QUIETLY) MOVE FIVE STEPS FORWARD, (THE ARMY RESPONDED BY MARCHING TWO STEPS FORWARD AND THREE STEPS UP THE VERTICAL MOUNTAIN AND STOOD THERE DEFYING GRAVITY.- THE TWO MEN LOOKED AT EACH OTHER IN AMAZEMENT SEEING THE LEAD GROUP SUSPENDED FROM THE CLIFF WALL WITHOUT FALLING.) TAKE SEVEN STEPS BACKWARD, (SAMUEL SAID SOFTLY), (THE MEN RETREATED FROM THE MOUNTAIN IN ORDER, NO ONE FELL AND THERE WAS STILL NOT A SOUND FROM THE THOUSANDS BELOW. -THE TWO MEN LOOKED AT EACH OTHER FOR A LONG TIME BEFORE SAMUEL SPOKE. WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO WITH THESE GUYS? FRANK: I WAS GOING TO ASK YOU THE SAME THING. -I DON'T LIKE IT. I THINK WE SHOULD LEAVE THEM ALONE AND GET BUSY WALKING TO OUR ASSIGNMENT VILLAGE. AND FOR LORDS SAKE DON'T TELL ANYONE WHAT HAPPENED WE'LL BOTH GET CANNED. (FRANK SCREAMED AS HE LOOKED UP AND SAW FOUR OF THE SOLDIERS STANDING BEFORE THEM.) SAMUEL:I CALLED FOUR OF THEM TO COME UP HERE AND THEY CAME. FRANK:THEY WALKED UP THE SIDE OF A CLIFF? SAMUEL: EVIDENTLY. THEY JUST DID IT DOWN THERE. FRANK:THEY MAKE ME NERVOUS SEND THEM AWAY. SAMUEL:ARE YOU CRAZY, WE'D BE KILLED TRYING TO CLIMB UP TO THE TOP OF THIS MOUNTAIN FROM HERE. I'll GET TWO OF THEM TO CARRY YOU AND TWO FOR ME.- CARRY US UP TO THE TOP OF THIS MOUNTAIN AND PUT US DOWN ON LEVEL LAND. ( INSTEAD OF TWO SOLDIERS PICKING UP FRANK AND SAMUEL, ONE SOLDIER PICKED THEM BOTH UP AND WALKED UP THE FACE OF THE CLIFF TO THE TOP AND FURTHER AWAY DOWN TO LEVEL LAND.) PUT US DOWN (SAMUEL SAID GENTLY) THANK YOU VERY MUCH. FRANK: THANK GOD, WE'RE SAVED. WE COULD NEVER HAVE MADE IT UP THAT CANYON WALL WITHOUT THESE GUYS. (THEY STARTED WALKING BACK TO THEIR CAMPSITE WITH THE FOUR SOLDIERS FOLLOWING.) SAMUEL:WELL NEVER MAKE IT TO THE CAMPSITE BEFORE DARK. I DON'T SEE ANY LANDMARKS THAT ARE FAMILIAR, DO YOU. FRANK: NO, BUT HAVE YOU THOUGHT OF LETTING THESE GUYS CARRY US, I'M TIRED. SAMUEL: CARRY US STRAIGHT AHEAD.( ONE SOLDIER PICKED UP THE TWO MEN AND THEY WALKED SLOWLY TOWARD WHERE THEY THOUGHT THE CAMPSITE MIGHT BE.) CAN YOU GO A LITTLE FASTER? SAMUEL ASKED. (INSTANTLY THEY WERE TRAVELING AT APPROXIMATELY THIRTY MILES PER HOUR.) TO THE RIGHT SAMUEL YELLED,( BEFORE THEY KNEW IT THEY WERE AT THE CAMPSITE.) HURRY UP FRANK LETS GET PACKED AND WE CAN GET A LIFT TO THE VILLAGE AND SAVE A DAYS WALK. (AS THEY GAVE THE PACKS TO THE SOLDIERS, FRANK SAID:) CARRY US STRAIGHT AHEAD AND THIS TIME A LITTLE FASTER.(WITHIN MINUTES THEY WERE IN SIGHT OF THE VILLAGE.) SLOW DOWN. SAMUEL COMMANDED. (AS THEY CAME CLOSER TO THE VILLAGE SAMUEL COMMANDED THAT THEY STOP. HE PICKED OUT A SECLUDED PLACE AND TOLD THE SOLDIERS TO REST UNTIL HE CALLED THEM. )FRANK AND SAMUEL PICKED UP THEIR GEAR AND WALKED THE FINAL DISTANCE TO THE VILLAGE. AS THEY CAME WITHIN SIGHT OF THE VILLAGERS THEY BEGAN TO HEAR SHOUTS AND SEE ARMS WAVING. THE VILLAGERS PARTED AND A YOUNG WOMAN CAME FORWARD .LEKA: HELLO MY FRIENDS, WELCOME TO OUR HUMBLE HOME. WE WERE NOT EXPECTING YOU BEFORE TOMORROW. YOU MUST HAVE WALKED ALL NIGHT TO HAVE ARRIVED AT THIS TIME. (SHE GAVE A COMMAND TO SEVERAL VILLAGERS WHO RELIEVED FRANK AND SAMUEL OF THE LOAD OF SUPPLIES THEY WERE CARRYING.) THIS IS YOUR TENT WITH SUPPLIES OF FOOD AND WATER. AFTER YOU MEET MY BROTHER, DR. BAHTIERA YOU CAN COME BACK AND FRESHEN UP.  LEKA, LED THEM INTO A HUT MADE OF CONCRETE. IT WAS COOL INSIDE AND FAIRLY WELL LIGHTED. A YOUNG MAN SAT AT A TABLE WRITING.DR. BAHTIERA(STANDING) WELL OUR GUESTS HAVE ARRIVED, WELCOME GENTLEMEN, YOU MUST BE SAMUEL, THE WRITER IS THAT CORRECT? AND YOU WOULD BE FRANK THE PHOTOGRAPHER. PLEASE BE SEATED. WOULD YOU CARE FOR SOME TEA? OF COURSE YOU MUST BE EXHAUSTED FROM YOUR JOURNEY. WE RECEIVED A RADIO MESSAGE FROM THE HELICOPTER PILOT THAT YOU WERE DROPPED OFF TWO DAYS FROM HERE TO PHOTOGRAPH LOCAL FAUNA. I IMAGINE THAT COULD BE USED TO ASSIST OUR PROBLEM SOLVING IF POSSIBLE. I ALSO RECEIVED A FAX WITH YOUR PHOTOGRAPHS FROM YOUR MAGAZINE. SAMUEL: YOU HAVE ELECTRICITY? LARGE GENERATORS. THE DR. REPLIED. (A WOMAN IN TRADITIONAL ATTIRE BROUGHT TEA AND CAKES, SHE SMILED AT THE TWO STRANGERS. AND ASKED THE DOCTOR SOMETHING IN A LANGUAGE FRANK AND SAMUEL HAD NEVER HEARD BEFORE. AFTER SHE LEFT, THE DOCTOR SMILED AND SAID: SHE WANTED TO KNOW IF YOU WERE MARRIED. (HE POINTED AT SAMUEL WHO WAS FLATTERED. ) I TOLD HER YES YOU WERE, WE HAVE TO BECAREFUL OF MY PEOPLE, THEY ARE EASILY HURT, SO PLEASE BE KIND AND DO NOT BECOME INVOLVED IF POSSIBLE. SAMUEL: WE'RE HERE STRICTLY IN BUSINESS FOR OUR MAGAZINE, DR. BHATIERA: I'M CERTAIN YOU ARE, BUT THE NIGHTS ARE LOVELY WITH HUGE MOONS AND LOVELY BREEZES AND THE SMELL OF EXOTIC FLOWERS, QUITE ROMANTIC, ESPECIALLY AFTER A FEW LONELY WEEKS. FRANK: DO I NEED PERMISSION TO PHOTOGRAPH THE LOCALS? DR. BHATIERA: NO YOU HAVE FREE ACCESS TO OUR ENTIRE VILLAGE. THERE HAVE BEENA FEW PHOTOGRAPHERS WHO VISITED US.- WE WILL HAVE A FEAST TOMORROW NIGHT AND YOU WILL BE INTRODUCED FORMALLY. PLEASE EXCUSE ME I HAVE WORK TO DO, PLEASE FINISH YOUR TEA AND CAKES, WOULD YOU CARE FOR MORE? SAMUEL: NO THANKS DOC, WERE GOING TO TURN IN IT'S BEEN A REALLY ROUGH DAY, WE'LL SEE YOU TOMORROW AND I'LL SKETCH OUT YOUR STORY, OK? FINE, THE DOCTOR REPLIED QUIETLY, (HE WAS INSTANTLY DEEP IN HIS WORK.) AS THE TWO MEN EXITED THE SMALL HOUSE THEY WERE MET BY LEKA CARRYING A SMALL CHILD IN HER ARMS. YOUR BABY? FRANK ASKED. LEKA SMILED: PERHAPS.( SHE LED THEM TO THEIR HUT AND SAID, GOODBYE UNTIL TOMORROW. (SAMUEL WASHED UP WITH THE PITCHER OF WATER AND DRIED OFF.SOMEONE POPPED IN THE DOORWAY AND SMILED. IT WAS THE WOMAN WHO HAD SERVED THEM TEA IN THE DOCTOR'S HUT.SHE SMILED WALKED BY SAMUEL GIVING HIM AND HIS JOCKEY SHORTS THE ONCE OVER, SHE LEFT THE HUT AND RETURNED IMMEDIATELY WITH FRESH WATER IN A PITCHER SHE SMILED AND SAID. KOOLA.THEN LEFT. FRANK WASHED UP WHILE SAMUEL SAT ON THE EDGE OF THE BED PONDERING THEIR EXPERIENCE OF THE DAY. FOUR WOMEN PEEKED IN  THE TENT OPENING,  LOOKED AT SAMUEL, LAUGHED. AND SHOOK THEIR HEADS IN AGREEMENT AND DEPARTED. (THEY TURNED OFF THE OIL BURNING LAMP AND IMMEDIATELY FELL ASLEEP.) THE SOUND OF GUNSHOTS AWAKENED FRANK WHO RAN TO THE TENT ENTRANCE  WITH HIS CAMERA AND SAW FIVE OR SIX MEN ON CAMELS SHOOTING INTO THE AIR. THE VILLAGERS WERE RUNNING IN ALL DIRECTIONS AND SCREAMING. SAMUEL, SAT UP AND SHOOK HIS HEAD. THE SOUND OF GUNFIRE CONTINUED. SAMUEL RUMMAGED THROUGH HIS PACK LOOKING FOR HIS GUN, WHEN HE FOUND IT HE RAN TO THE TENT OPENING. SAMUEL:WHAT THE HELL'S GOING ON? (LEKA RAN BY.) FRANK YELLED: WHAT DO THOSE GUYS WANT? LEKA: GOLD! (SHE DISAPPEARED  IN THE DARKNESS.  THE GUNMEN KEPT FIRING INTO THE AIR AND YELLING PEOPLE WERE RUNNING IN ALL DIRECTIONS  SOME THROWING THINGS INTO A RUG OR BLANKET. FRANK; THESE GUYS RODE IN ON CAMELS AND STARTED SHOOTING AND YELLING SOMETHING AND THE PEOPLE ALL RAN AWAY, THEN THEY CAME BACK AND STARTED THROWING THINGS INTO THAT BLANKET THE RIDERS PUT DOWN ON THE GROUND. SAMUEL: BANDITS! (HE AIMED SLOWLY AND FIRED. ONE RIDER FELL FROM HIS CAMEL THE OTHER RIDERS RODE AROUND IN CIRCLES LOOKING FOR THE DIRECTION OF THE GUN SHOT. FRANK: DON'T SHOOT SAMUEL, YOU MAY HIT ONE OF THE VILLAGERS. (ONE RIDER SLID OFF HIS CAMEL AND PICKED UP THE FALLEN MAN.TANOTHER GATHERED THE BLANKET AND THE CAMELS RODE OFF IN THE DIRECTION FROM WHICH FRANK AND SAMUEL HAD EARLIER ARRIVED FROM. SAMUEL:(WHISPERING) SOLDIERS; SIX MEN ARE COMING ON CAMELS, KILL THEM. DO NOT KILL THE CAMELS. (THE CRYING AND SCREAMING SUBSIDED AND QUIET RETURNED TO THE NIGHT.) FRANK: WELL THE BANDITS GOT AWAY. SAMUEL: DON'T BET ON IT. FRANK: WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? SAMUEL: ASK ME IN THE MORNING, WELL GO TO THE SPOT WHERE WE LEFT THE SOLDIERS. BELIEVE ME THE CAMELS WILL BE THERE BUT THE RIDERS WON'T, AT LEAST NOT ALIVE. FRANK: YOU COULD DO THAT FROM HERE?  SAMUEL: TAKE IT TO THE BANK. GO TO SLEEP. WE'LL GO DOWN TOMORROW AND SEE IF I'M RIGHT OR NOT. GOODNIGHT. FRANK: GOODNIGHT TO YOU AND YOUR FAN CLUB. WHO COULD SLEEP AFTER ALL THAT RACKET. YOU KILLED A MAN AND YOU'RE GOING TO SLEEP? (THE SOUND OF SLIGHT SNORING CAME FROM SAMUELS BED. FRANK LAY THERE AWAKE UNTIL DAWN .HE WASHED HIS FACE AND DRESSED. HE STARTED WALKING TOWARD THE PLACE WHERE THE SOLDIERS HAD BEEN LEFT BEHIND.SAMUEL CAUGHT UP WITH HIM BEFORE HE REACHED HIS DESTINATION. IN THE DISTANCE THEY COULD SEE CAMELS GRAZING WITH DEAD BODIES NEARBY. A BLANKET WAS ON THE GROUND ITS CONTENTS SPILLED INTO THE GRASS. GOLD BRACELETS, GOLD EARRINGS, AND A BRICK OF SOME DIRTY LOOKING MATERIAL. THEY BOTH LOOKED AT IT WONDERING WHAT IT WAS. SAMUEL SCRAPED THE BRICK AND A BRIGHT GOLDEN GLOW REFLECTED IN THE MORNING SUNLIGHT. SAMUEL: THIS BRICK IS GOLD. IT MUST WEIGH A TON. FRANK: WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO WITH THESE DEAD BODIES? SAMUEL:( TO SOLDIERS ) TAKE THESE BODIES AND THROW THEM INTO THE CAVE WHERE YOU FOUND US. (TWO SOLDIERS PICKED UP SEVEN BODIES AND STARTED WALKING IN THE DIRECTION WHERETWO FRANK AND SAMUEL HAD BEEN FOUND.) SAMUEL: RUN! (THE SOLDIERS RAN THEN SOON DISAPPEARED.) SAMUEL: (TO THE REMAINING SOLDIERS:) STAY HERE UNTIL I CALL YOU. (FRANK AND SAMUEL LED THE GOLD LADEN CAMEL AND OTHERS BACK TO THE VILLAGE.)   Milton Bowser dlvmagazine.com/ SITARE, lTD. Publishers since 1961 Courtesy of: blogskinny.com.digg.com/del.icio.us.com/technocrati.com    

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