Conspiracy at Desert One
By Bernace Charles
The Austin twisted its way to crest a hill where the road dropped away
to the southwest. There, the coast of Cornwall stopped at the bottom of
jagged cliffs falling away to the English Channel. In the distance, the
coastal town of Porthleven sat removed from the rush of life. As Roya steered
the car down the roadway and entered the town she thought of The Old City.
On reaching the harbor Wes said, "Follow the harbor and turn left
at its end."
Roya drove until she found a stone house with a wreathed sign reading,
"Bay Rest." She turned the car to the side of the road, got out,
and hurried around to Walker's door. Roya helped Walker stand and walk
up steps. An atrium allowed the home's owner to sit out of the wind and
view the channel. Jasmine bloomed within the atrium. Somehow, the plant
reassured Roya there was some sense and order to the world. Jasmine grew
in the narrow courtyard of her and her mother's home in The Old City.
Lin Thi was in the kitchen. She heard the knock at the front of the
home. Reaching it she parted the curtains and saw Wes with a young woman.
As she opened the door Walker said, "Hello, Lin Thi, I need your help
for a few days."
"Wes, what are you doing here? A man asked for you." Lin Thi
helped Roya get Wes into the house. As the two women got him up stairs
to a bedroom with twin beds Lin Thi asked, "Wes, what have you done?
The news says that you killed several men."
"What did the man say?"
"He wanted to know if you were here or if we keep in contact. He
said there was a story he wanted you to write. Wes, how have you hurt yourself?"
"I was shot."
Lin Thi said, "I swear you're never going to change. Why do you
always have to write about the evil in the world?"
"It's for justice." Walker said the words as the two women
position him through a door and onto a bed.
Lin Thi looked at the wound and bloody shirt. "You're hurt, Wes.
You're seriously hurt to have lost that much blood. You need a doctor."
"I need one you can trust to keep his mouth shut."
Lin Thi asked, "Are you ever going to grow out of this madness?"
Roya didn't like the sound of the question. She said, "It's my
fault. There are men from America wanting me dead."
The words didn't offend Lin Thi. They gave the opposite effect. If there
were men wanting Wes dead for something the young woman knew Lin Thi would
see that Wes got it written. She also knew the young woman was infatuated
with him. It was in the girl's tired face. Wes Walker once affected her
the same way. Lin Thi added, "Don't worry . . . I'll get a doctor."
Roya thought the oriental woman truly beautiful. However, Roya also
sensed the woman wasn't interested in going backwards with her life.
Lin Thi smiled at Roya and knowing she once felt infatuation for Wes
Walker. Wes was the girl's anchor in a world going wrong. What that wrong
was Lin Thi didn't know. Lin Thi said to Roya, "Why don't you lay
down, and I'll get a doctor. We need to get rid of the car. Is anything
Wes said, "The laptop computer. Roya needs the envelope beneath
the seat. They're important."
"I'll be right back. Then, I'll get help."
Roya said, "Thank you."
"Perhaps if he survives you can get him to settle down before he
kills himself." Lin Thi left the room and went down stairs and out
to the car. She took the laptop computer and Roya's knapsack and carried
them to the atrium then drove the car to the back of the house.
Back in the bedroom, she found the young woman with Walker lying on
the second bed. Roya's head lay on a pillow and she was fast asleep. Lin
Thi knew the young woman was exhausted. She said, "I moved the car
around back. Here are the computer and papers. Is she going to be all right?"
"Yes, Lin Thi, she's been driving through the night. This isn't
Lin Thi took the bandage off the wound and said, "I need to get
a doctor. I know one who doesn't like the country's health care system.
He'll appreciate a few extra pounds in his pocket."
Wes grimaced, "I'm glad to see you're doing OK. I worried about
you. We were at the house on the Esk River. Did you tell any one of it?"
"No. You know I wouldn't."
"It's probably burned to the ground."
Lin Thi said, "Ask me if it would surprise me?"
"No. Now keep still until I can get a doctor here. It's going to
take sometime for you to heal. If whoever is looking for you, is looking
for her, you're going to have to stay inside. You can't travel like this.
Someone may return here and ask for you."
"You were always a good woman, Lin Thi."
"I'm aware of that. It's what you are that always worried me. Now,
you have someone trying to kill you. Why?"
"I'll tell you later."
Lin Thi stood. She looked at Roya and said, "Let her sleep. She
needs it." Lin Thi turned and shut the bedroom door and went down
the stairs to exit through the atrium. >>>
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