Week 2.3 – Two Hours Ago (Give or Take)

Previously: Digger was ordered by a mysterious voice on a video monitor to rob a bank, or else a hostage would die.

“I don’t even know where it is!” Digger protested. “Or where I am, for that matter.”

“The phone on the table has the route,” said the Voice. “Go.”

Digger noticed the small black phone on the table next to the TV. Probably a burner–disposable, untraceable without special powers. As he was reaching for it, he paused.

Someone was standing behind the man in the chair, almost completely hidden in a shadowy corner. Stray light reflecting off the bomb collar had briefly revealed a bit of sleeve and a hand. The man was big, wearing a charcoal-colored suit with what looked like blue surgical gloves on his hands.

As Digger was looking more closely to see if he could catch another glimpse, the Voice said, “Why are you still there? Move! Or should I demonstrate my seriousness?”

“Damn it,” Digger muttered. He turned and ran.

He burst through the doors into early afternoon sunlight as he waited for the phone to boot up. He tapped the icon for the GPS app, and a map came up with a line in red from a nearly abandoned industrial park by the airport to a bank downtown. It would be impossible to run that far at normal speed, and tough to make the trip within the time limit even in a car, given the traffic downtown. Luckily, those weren’t his only options.

He turned and ran straight toward the bank as near as he could. As he neared the building on the far side of the street, he bounded 30 feet up, somersaulted, and planted his feet solidly against the wall. Then he just kept running straight up.

Running up walls was hard, and it had taken him weeks to learn the proper gait. The thing that defines a run from a walk is that the runner’s feet both leave the ground. Running is essentially a series of small leaps, with gravity pulling the runner back down into contact with the ground for the next step.

On a wall, it was all too easy to push off too far to allow your next step to reach the surface, and you would fall. Digger had to make sure that he was pushing more “forward” than “up” and keep his knees bent to allow his next step to make contact. He almost seemed to glide rather than run, and if it weren’t for his enhanced strength, his ankles might not have been up to the task. Once he got the hang of it, though, it was a hell of a lot faster than climbing with his hands. And running in a straight line across rooftops, leaping across the streets, was a hell of lot faster than following the street route the phone was telling him to take.

He was going to make it in time.  Then what?

The phone. He closed the map and dialed 911.

“Nine-one-one, what is your emergency?” asked a bored voice.

“I’m on my way to rob a bank,” Digger said.

Be here tomorrow for our next exciting episode!

To read from the beginning, click here

Or to read the next episode, click here!

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