INT THE UNLOADING AREA
Ensconced in the shadows far from their tent prison, Mrs. Slidell and Abigail check out two parked Humvees.
Must be some kind of alert.
I think it might be about my husband.
He had better brought an army with him. And we better find that place you were talking about.
We’ll need both of those Hummers.
They emerge from their dark hiding place and run down to the vehicles in a low crouch. Abigail reaches hers first, enters and holds up keys in triumph.
Hot damn. Mine too!
Follow me then, and stop when I do.
EXT GREENSPOT IN A ROCKY AREA
Haze already rises from the rocks baking in the morning sun. The stream bed runs straight ahead and disappears in a cleft in the rocky hillside, a cleft surrounded with green vegetation. Parked on the stream bed is a van – its back doors open and a Confederate flag decal decorating the back window.
Ben and Riley converge on it stealthily. Ben signals that the coast is clear; and Riley returns the same signal for his side. Ben eyes widen when he sees the contents.
He pulls out a miner’s helmet complete with a light. He grabs another for Riley.
Any bat repellent? There’s sure to be bats.
(packing a satchel of goodies)
I’d settle for rebel repellent.
IN THE CLEFT
A KGC SCOUT emerges from a pit at the base of the cleft and turns to help his COMPANION.
Another dead end.
Still, mark it down for the scuba team to check out.
They pass from sight and the boys drop down into the pit.
INT GROTTO LIKE DEPRESSION
One hand on the wall, Ben comes to the end of his circuit of the chamber, where an entrance has been blocked by rubble.
No passage anywhere at this level.
And Riley looks up from a pool of water that continually fills but does not rise. Riley stands and peers down into the depths of the pool.
Do you think they tried it?
They didn’t appear wet.
(giving him a fierce grin)
So, how do you want to do this?
By remote control.
He passes him the satchel, removing first a coil of rope, pays it out and ties one end around his waist and then gives Riley the other.
Current looks strong. A quick trip outbound, but I’ll need your help coming back. Wait for a double tug.
Ben steps down into the water and with his second step drops out of sight.
Ben bobs to the surface, sputtering water.
It’s deep, but that’s good.
He takes a deep breath and dives.
As he travels from the grotto the light dims. He surfaces and discovers an air pocket at the top of the tunnel. And soon reaches the end of the rope. Ahead he can see a ledge. He also hears the sound of wind whistling and water falling.
He tugs the line twice, takes a gulp of air, and kicks off for his trip back.
Ben parts the water and crawls up and out with Riley’s help.
Tricky, but doable. You up for a challenge?
Is there a way without getting wet?
Getting wet is the least of our worries. The passage continues, but there’s also a water fall.
You’re dragging me down that tunnel, and then over a cliff?
In a pinch, it may be the quickest way. And I’m feeling in a pinch.
With the rope tied between them, first Ben then Riley enter the cold water.
[next pt 45]