The Box's Pandora part 29

It was early in the morning and I stood in front of the bathroom mirror, carefully applying my makeup. I realized that since we were going into the lion’s den, there was no reason for me to keep up the goth disguise, but making myself up like this had become a bit of a habit. And more importantly, it let me differentiate myself a bit more from Dora.

“I guess this is my style now,” I said, though I knew that once this was done and over with, assuming we survived it, I’d want to play around with my look a little more. “Who knows, I might find a style I like even better…”

But first, we had to save Theressa and then get away. Neither of those things were going to be easy, though fortunately, Dora and Cliff had left a few things behind that would help.

The safe house was well stocked with weapons and supplies, including the emergency rations that we’d had for breakfast. Now, we no longer had the excuse of not having enough weapons to pull off the job, though we still needed more people. Or at least, I would have preferred it if we had a few dozen well-armed soldiers to help us out, but that simply wasn’t going to happen. We would just have to make due with three people, regardless of whether it was enough or not.

Once I was finished, I went to the living room, where Jake and Dave were looking over the weapons, which were spread out. Without saying a word, I picked up a second pistol, which I slid into my belt holster. I still had the other one hidden inside my jacket, but it never hurts to be prepared. And with that in mind, I picked up a short rifle, which Jake had referred to as an M-4.

“And can we stop and pick up some good coffee on the way out of town?” I asked. The stuff that had been stocked in the kitchen, hadn’t been very good quality.

“And donuts,” Dave added with a grin, as he held up a shotgun.

Jake just rolled his eyes. “I just hope that they haven’t moved Theressa, because if they have, we’d have no way of knowing, or following.”

Though Jake didn’t look at me, I knew that he blamed me for the loss of the mirror. That was understandable, since I blamed myself as well. If I’d only been able to hold out against the box for a little longer… As it was, I could feel the box whispering to me, telling me that it wanted the new artifact we’d found. There was a good reason that Jake was the one keeping hold of that one, rather than me.

We went through the items we’d decided to take with us, making sure that we hadn’t forgotten anything. Then we put everything else back where we’d found it and locked up the hidden room in the basement. If everything went as planned, then we’d probably be back here before long. If things didn’t go as planned, then we were likely to never be back here again.

Once everything was ready, we left the safe house, driving an SUV that we found in the garage. Since Dave claimed shotgun, literally, I stretched out in the back seat, wishing that I still had my DS so that I’d be able to distract myself. At the moment, I needed something to take my mind off the situation.

We drove for half the day before finally arriving at our destination, or at least, the town that our destination was located right outside of. It would have been stupid to go straight to the house where Theressa was being held, so instead, we stopped to stretch our legs, get something to eat, and make a plan.

“We need to get a better look at the place,” Jake said, glancing around the restaurant where we’d stopped to eat. When nobody was close enough to hear, he continued. “We need to scout the place and get a better idea of the security.”

“Since we don’t have the mirror anymore, that would probably be smart,” I agreed with a sigh, once again feeling guilty for giving in to the box.

Dave nodded his own agreement. “There’s only so much you can get online. We need to set eyes on the target before doing anything else.”

Jake took a sip of his coffee, then mused, “We might not have the mirror anymore, but it already told us a lot about the area. We saw enough to know that there’s a hill on the neighboring property, which isn’t nearly as secured. We can probably get up there without much problem, and that should give us a good view.” With that, Jake pulled out a map that he’d bought at a local gas station and unfolded it. He quickly found the house and pointed it out on the map.

“Sounds good to me,” Dave commented, looking over the map.

“Me too,” I said, mostly to feel like I was a larger part of the planning than I actually seemed to be at the moment.

“I know we’re in a time crunch,” Dave said, looking back and forth between Jake and me, “but I suggest we wait till the sun goes down. Better cover in the dark.”

I hesitated a moment, since I was impatient and wanted to run rushing in to rescue Theressa as soon as possible. However, I didn’t want to get her killed because we were impatient and did something stupid. And of course, I didn’t want any of us to get killed either. So after considering it for a moment, I grudgingly admitted, “That would probably be smart.”

“That would be better to keep from being seen,” Jake responded with a thoughtful expression. “But we need to see the place in the daylight, so we can get a better idea of what we’re facing.” He looked at Dave. “But you’re probably right, that we shouldn’t actually make a real move until it gets dark.”

While we ate, we continued to discuss our plans, but the truth was, we didn’t know enough to make a decent plan. So instead, we planned to sneak a good look of the house, then planned to make a plan later. The whole situation was frustrating, since even though we had a lot more resources than we did yesterday at this time, we still didn’t have any more people. However, the fact that we were so close to Theressa, also filled me with hope and excitement.

When we were finished eating, and with making our uncomfortably vague plans, we got back in the car and drove towards the house we’d seen in the mirror. We drove past, making sure not to slow down or do anything suspicious. The place was pretty far back off the road, and had a fence around the whole property, so we couldn’t make out much from there. However, we hadn’t really expected to.

“Good thing we saw so much of the place in the mirror,” Jake commented.

“And on Google Earth,” I added. That picture had given a good idea of the overall layout of the property.

“Then let’s go finish our scouting, and make a solid plan,” Jake said.

“That sounds like a plan to me,” Dave and I said together.

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