The Hu Factor – Book 1 chapter 4
Here is the next installment. If I am posting these too slow for you, you can buy the entire manuscript as a pdf from me at http://garden.vagobond.com/purchase-the-hu-factor/
And I am archiving the chapters at http://vagobond.posterous.com Please share this, plus one it, and help me to find an agent and a publisher so that I can feel good about continuing the series…and feed my family while I do it. Who knows maybe Syfy will even make a series of it that survives longer than one season. As always…I strongly encourage you to give me feedback whether it is editing, plot holes, emotional response (cool, that sucks, I love that guy) or even “I love it” (and that last one is especially good for us writer types – it’s like crack – we can’t get enough of it)
Ben stood up and climbed over the heap and through the doorway.
“I’m here,” he shouted. “ Don’t panic. Everything is going to be okay. Can you hear me?”
He didn’t know why he said it. He didn’t know everything was going to be okay. In fact, everything was very far from okay. He wondered if maybe he shouldn’t start screaming for help too, but the truth was, he actually felt relieved that there was someone else here. Knowing that he was no longer by himself in an experimental Russian film somehow made things seem a lot better.
“Hey, can you hear me? Hello?” Ben called out. When he hadn’t gotten an answer right away, he had started to think that maybe he had imagined the voice. Maybe it had even been him! He discounted that idea right away. He felt confused and disoriented, but he didn’t feel crazy. Finally, after giving him just enough pause to have these thoughts, a response came.
“I’m here, I can’t get out of this room, there is a big pile of stuff blocking me in….are you there?” The panic was not completely gone, but it wasn’t the same intensity that it had been when he first heard it.
“Keep calling out to me so that I can find you. It’s very dark and I can’t move very fast. It might take some time to reach you, but I am coming.” Ben’s new ‘shoes’ made a funny scraping noise as he shuffled his feet over the floor. He figured it was better to push rubble out of the way then to step on it. Every once in a while, he encountered a larger piece and had to feel for better footing. He was also aware that there could be holes or weak areas in the floor. He didn’t want to die, even if he didn’t know what the hell was going on.
“It’s dark here too. Don’t you have a light? Where am I? What is going on? Are you still there?”
There was a part of Ben that almost wanted to keep quiet and sneak away from this annoying person. The voice sounded like it was coming from quite far down the hallway.
“You said there is a pile of stuff, can you start to clear it out of the way? Can you find anything useful in it?” Ben kept moving towards the voice.
“Useful for what? I’m cold. I don’t have any clothes. Can you get me out of here?” Not only was there panic, but there was also a whining that Ben could not stand the sound of. Sometimes no company was preferable to bad company. As it was though, Ben hoped that this whining man might be able to help him figure out where they were.
“See if you can find some cloth. You can use it to get a little warmer. My name is Ben, what is yours?” Maybe this guy just needed to start doing something. Maybe he just needed to take a second to put his head on straight.
“My name is Vlad. You said your name is Ben? What are we doing here Ben?” That was a little better. Vlad, hmmm, maybe he was in Russia after all. Not that that made any more sense than anything else.
“Vlad, I don’t know. All I know is I woke up here a few hours ago. I found some cloth in a pile by my door and I made some clothes. Can you move the pile so that you can get out of there? I think we need to find our way outside.” Now he could hear the sound of rocks being thrown to the ground as Vlad presumably started to excavate his way to the door.
“Ben, I’ve found some cloth!” There was actually a bit of the sound of victory in Vlad’s voice suddenly. Good. Ben couldn’t stand whiners. He was getting closer to Vlad’s doorway now.
“Vlad, how long have you been here?” Ben had reached the doorway now and started to pull large pieces of concrete from it. The room behind it was still dark. He could feel cloth and stone under his fingers and could just barely make out that this pile was a similar composition to the one that had blocked the door of the room he had woke in.
“I don’t know. Maybe an hour? I woke up here and crawled around the room. I found this pile and the door frame and not much else. I was going to explore further and then I heard laughter like demons in hell coming to get me. Is this a dream Ben?” Vlad had a bit of panic coming back into his voice.
“I don’t think so. I think the laughter you heard was me. I woke up here a few hours ago. Vlad, if you go straight across the room behind you, I think you might find a window. I was able to pull a piece of wood from the one in the room I woke up in. We could use some light.” He heard Vlad move across the room. “I was able to put my fingers under the lip and pull it free.”
“ I don’t feel anything but the wall Ben, is there a light, wait….I think I’ve got it. I’ve got it! Okay, one, two…three…!” This time Ben had been prepared. He shielded his eyes as the light pored through the gaps in the blocked doorway in front of him. He heard the shutter being set down. Apparently Vlad had avoided Ben’s nasty fall. There was silence as Vlad’s eyes presumably got used to the light. After a moment, “Ben? Where in hell are we?”
Ben felt a rush of disappointment. “Crap. I was hoping you would be able to tell me. You don’t recognize it?”
“Not at all, it doesn’t even look like we’re in the Dominican Republic anymore.”