Two minutes of easy climbing, and they were in the scrub brush at the back of the parking lot.
From the square side of the parking lot it probably looked as though there were nothing at all at the back of the parking lot. Fine, Mike thought. He only hoped none of them knew what was below the parking lot, but he didn’t believe it. Anyone who grew up here knew what was at the edge of this parking lot. Anyone here now knew they were in the cave down on the Old River Road. Mike believed it was only a matter of time before they came for them. When they did, he would be here waiting.
Before the thoughts were completely formed in his head, three people came running straight toward them where they stood within the scrub brush. Four heavily armed men were pursuing them. Firing as they ran. The three runners appeared to be unarmed. Mike stepped from the screening scrub. He had given it no thought at all. He stepped nearly into the path of the lead runner. Her mouth flew open in surprise; a small spatter of blood tattooed one of her cheeks. Mike stepped easily around her, took aim at the first of the four chasers and shot him just as he was slowing down to bring his own rifle up. To his side Candace crouched and began popping off at the other three as they continued running, perfectly aimed shots. She took out two. Lilly dropped the last one. The lead man’s momentum carried him forward another fifteen feet before he realized he was dead and fell end over end onto the blacktop.
One of the remaining chasers managed to pop off one last shot before he went down. The last runner collapsed in a heap. It was over in less than a second. Five people lay dead.
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