“Hey, hey…hey, guys! I was just taking a nap until your shift was over. I was gonna see if I could get a ride into town. I had a mighty bad accident.” Jim tried to sweet talk them but when that failed he fought the men as they dragged him over sharp rocks and broken asphalt towards the mine office.
“Your about to have another, dumbass! How fuckin’ stupid are you? Shoulda’ just started walkin’ to town.” Joe and a couple of men, dropped him right in front of the trailer and Theo could see Jim’s terrified face. He had to think of a plan, and quick.
Jim watched Theo roll away towards the mine entrance and felt his last chance at escaping alive disappear. He laid his head down and rested a moment. The men standing around him seemed to be waiting for a leader to arrive.
Right away Jim could tell that the man striding toward him with his chest puffed out and chin held high, was the boss man. He started their introduction with a swift kick at Jim’s ribs. “Well howdee! Look who we have here. Joe, Ed, you two hold him. In case he gets any smart ideas. Not likely though, seeing as how he’s stupid enough to try and steal one of our trucks. Search him now. Find them keys.”
Joe and Ed rifled through his overalls, and found his phone, the gold wrapped in his handkerchief, and a water bottle. No keys obviously, seeing as how Theo took off with them. Jo turned and spoke to the boss man, “George, he’s got no keys, but you might want to see this.” He handed the bundle of gold to him and George hooted and laughed. “Thank you so much for delivering this here gold. It would have gone to waste down that hole.” Jim finally got his breath back, but continued to cradle his ribcage. “Look, keep it, I just” his sentence was interrupted by George and his crew laughing, “Aw, he’s letting us have the gold. How sweet, I guess we’ll have to let him go on his merry way? Hmm, boys?” Every filthy skinned, one of them shook their head no. George smiled, “Well looks like your shit outta luck.” He looked to Ed “Go tell Steve to get the excavator and dig a nice deep hole by the east fence. Make sure you tell him, real real deep.”
Jim lay on the ground, he didn’t attempt to escape with so many men around, he could only pray for a miracle. Five minutes went by and most of the men wandered off back to work. George and Joe, stood watch. They smoked and discussed what car was the fastest, between a Mustang and a Charger. Jim couldn’t believe the conscience on the two men. Here lay their next murder victim and it was just another smoke break to them. A large machine was working in the background and Jim figured it was his burial hole being dug. He wondered if they even planned to kill him first. Thinking of suffocating under all that sand and rock terrified him.
The loud engine of the excavator stopped. George pushed away from the office’s outer wall where he’d been leaning and came to tell him, “Looks like your final resting place is done.” Jim’s face lost all color, tears welled in his eyes, and he shook terribly. Seeing his bodies reaction, he grinned a bit to himself. He’d always thought that he would go out with more dignity than he was showing. Dehydration was probably the only reason he hadn’t pissed himself yet.
George and Joe hauled him to his feet, “Come on, no need to start crying,…What the fuck was that!” A huge blast went off and almost knocked them all on their butts. Rocks and debris flew thirty feet into the sky and mining equipment began sloping into the mine pit. George took off at sprint towards the explosion and Joe looked torn on whether to follow and help or to watch the prisoner. He took option three and cold-cocked Jim and ran off, figuring he would stay down for a while.
Being a tough old man, Jim awoke a second later with a heavy ringing in his left ear and a foggy mind. There was something he should be doing, he thought. Getting to his feet, he immediately fell to his knees. Going more slowly this time, he was able to stay upright. Something pulled on his pant leg, it was Theo. “Hey Jimmy, you’d best get a move on or they’ll be back to skin you for sure.” Jim smiled and slurred, “Theo, you came back. Thanks man.”
“Nevermind that, here’s the keys you gotta get to the jeep. He handed both sets to Jim and pointed at the parking lot. Wiping his face with his hands helped to clear his mind enough to get moving. His leg was on fire, his chest ached from the kick, and his head was spinning, “this might take a while.” he said to Theo. “You don’t have a while, now go. Those blasts I set, won’t keep them occupied forever.”
Jim shambled to the Jeep and was five feet from it before Joe came running towards him. He scrambled to get the door unlocked, and dropped the keys once before retrieving them and pushing the correct button; the mechanism clicked. Just as he pulled the door open Joe reached him and grabbed a hold of the straps on the back of his overalls. “Were the fuck you think your goin?!” Jim held tight to the inside door handle and the steering wheel. Joe almost pulled him out, but then screamed, “Ah what in holy hell is that?” Jim looked back and saw Joe was holding his leg out in front of him. A glowing green Theo had a mouthful of his calf and wasn’t letting go. Joe screamed again in agony as Theo’s stone crushing jaws knawed on his flesh. Jim scooted in and slammed the door shut. He locked himself inside the Jeep, and started the engine.
Theo spit out the chunk of meat and cloth that pulled off Joe’s leg and rolled off into the shadows. No one followed, Joe was only able to clutch his leg and cry as men came to see what the commotion was. He smiled and waved as Jim busted through the chain link fence and down the road. His friend would make it home safely and he had a new mine to explore; Theo considered their bargain complete. For now, he had some plans for George and his men. He only hoped that the police didn’t show up and ruin all the fun before he was finished.