Unnamed Journal Volume 3, Issue 3 - Page 11

Ulysses and the Fugitive 8 His phone rang. He didn't recognize the number, but it had the same exchange as some of his contacts in the Las Vegas field office. "Jonathon O'Flannery," he said, answering the call. "Hello? Agent O'Flannery?" "Speaking." "Sir, this is Collins from the branch office. We got a situation playing out right now near Lockwood. Could you head down there?" O'Flannery gritted his teeth at the vague request. "Absolutely. Can you tell me exactly what kind of situation is playing out near Lockwood?" "Three unidentified craft have been sighted in the airspace outside of Lockwood. The air force is about to engage and the national guard should be on site soon. We're coordinating our office's resources and personnel with the highway patrol. We expect to have agents and patrolmen there within the hour. I've sent you the GPS coordinates through secure text." "I'm on my way." O'Flannery hung up. The sound of uncertainty in Collins' voice quickened his pulse. His phone buzzed to notify him of the coordinates. He clicked on them to start navigation and sped away. * * * The trail of dark smoke was visible from miles away. O'Flannery had been going back and forth with Collins and whoever else he could reach on his contact list while he was driving. He almost ran off the road a few times. None of his contacts could reach anyone at the site. His pulse thudded so hard it blurred his vision. He parked the car on the side of the road. This was as close as he could get to the site. He pulled his 9mm from beneath his jacket. He had it, two magazines, and his back-up .40 caliber. I should've requisitioned a long gun, he thought. Neither the guns he had nor the guns he wished for did anything to assuage the feeling of naked vulnerability that O'Flannery felt. He hated feeling like he wasn't in control of a situation. If he could just focus a little more on how much he hated feeling this afraid, maybe he could get angry enough to push through whatever situation he found outside. O'Flannery stepped out of the car, holding his 9mm at the ready. He paused to scan the site through his binoculars. He could see two circular metallic objects surrounding by tanks and armored vehicles. Some personnel were standing by near some of the armored vehicles. Further away was the wreck of what looked like a fighter; it was the source of the smoke. What seemed odd was how still the whole scene looked. Nobody was moving. Everyone was just standing still, like they were frozen in place. The only thing that seemed to move was the smoke and fire from the downed plane. O'Flannery sucked his breath in through his teeth. He got out his phone and tried calling Collins, but he had no signal. He squinted at his phone's screen through the glare of daylight. Waving the phone around and taking a few steps from his car didn't gain him any reception. They must've radioed in the call, he thoug ‡Bà