camera activates: Rusty‘s walking through woodland, pine and firs, his steps quiet on the carpet of needles. He comes out of the woods behind an abandoned lumber mill and stops walking for a moment. The camera pans as he takes in his surroundings, listening. But there’s nothing to hear except some jays and he walks on, following the street into town. What’s left of it anyway, a handful of decaying homes, some scrappy cars still parked in the street, a gas station. The towns has been abandoned for years obviously.
He walks towards the gas station. There’s some police tape, flapping in the breeze, encircling the pump stations and a padlocked manhole cover that probably leads down to the empty gas tank. Rusty turns full circle, looks around, obviously searching for something or someone.
Fuck. Where are you?
He walks closer to the police tape, cranes his neck, but there’s nothing much to see. A dark spot on the tarmac a few meters down the street catches his eye and he walks over, gets down on one knee for a closer look. He gingerly touches it and his fingers rub off some flaky red stuff, dried blood. He stands up again, quickly, and turns once again, like he’s expecting an attack any second.
Fuck it, time to go.
He starts walking down the street back to where he came from. He jumps when he hears the bang of a door, pulls his crossbow and almost fires at the girl running towards him. She looks terrible, covered ins scrapes and bruises, her clothes torn and dirty and she’s sweating and stumbling, barely able to keep herself on her feet. Rusty catches her before she runs into him.
What happened here? Where’s the other girl? Let’s get her and we can get out of here.
She just starts crying, shaking her head and in between sobs, Rusty can understand enough to gather that Red Eye is dead. He picks up Dakota and starts walking.
No sense in hanging around here. You can tell me about it later, let’s get on our way.
A break in the recording. When the camera activates again, Rusty’s driving up a mountain pass. Dakota is uneasily sleeping on the back seat, he checks on her now and again in the rear view mirror.
Shit. What a fuckup. The cops found them, they conjured up a spirit to help them search. The girls tried to run but they didn’t stand a chance. Dakota says Red Eye suddenly turned back, gave her a shove to run on and stood her ground. When one of the cops tried to grab her, she reached for his gun and he shot her. Dakota made it out of town and stumbled into a ravine, almost broke her neck tumbling down the rocks, blacked out on landing. The cops must have left her for dead or maybe they didn’t find her. She clawed her way out of there and only just made it back into town on time. She’s in bad shape, I think she broke a couple of ribs and her shoulder and she’s in pain anyway from going cold turkey. I just hope the border cops don’t take a close look at her. I’ll stop at some gas station before we get there, make her a bit more presentable and then hope for the best.