As the blast hit the cave entrance, I was thrown forward into darkness. I could hear the cave collapsing behind us as I rolled on the cave floor. My flashlight had been ripped from my hand and I was face down. I think I blacked out then because it was so dark, I couldn’t tell if my eyes where open or shut or if I was conscious or not. I questioned that moment with thoughts of “Is this death?” Then I coughed, and that really hurt! I must be alive! I gathered myself and thought of my training. I could see a faint light on the ground so I got to my feet and slowly made my way to the light. It was my flashlight that was partially buried in the sand. As I picked it up I heard a voice.
“Anyone else alive?” a voice said from the corner of nowhere. “It’s me, Pogo.”
Then I heard all the Red Band 1 members sound off with coughing in the darkness. We gathered our back packs, found our flashlights, and started to assess the situation.
I stood there with my guys and proceeded to lay it out to them. “The entrance is blocked and we are about 50 feet deep in this cave. We are so lucky that we were able to go deeper. That’s what saved us. What we need to do now is use our equipment to see where the hell this cave goes. We are still alive and that means something. We will find a way out boys, that’s what we do, and we promised Clark some payback. Let that be your motivation. Let that be the fuel you use to get outta here and back to your lives, free of Clark and all his bullshit. This mind control thing has made us better soldiers physically and mentally. We can still play those programs they put in our heads and win, now it will be on our terms. Now we have our free will back, we get to choose, right?”
“Yes sir.” RB1 shouted back.
I pointed my flashlight at Q.
“Already on it Manny,” Q replied. “I am getting oxygen levels coming from deeper in the cave. There might be another exit or two. They say these caves can run for miles. Oh by the way guys, that wall Sticks blew up was man made from the inside. Like someone wanted to seal themselves inside this part of the cave.”
“Why do that? That’s weird man,” wondered Bronco.
“Maybe it was one of your ladies trying to get away from you Bronco,” Axe joked.
As we continued to make our way into the cave, Q’s equipment kept reading higher levels of oxygen. We assumed we were getting closer to an exit point, but the only discrepancy in that theory was that we had been descending at a 25 degree angle for almost 30 minutes.
Suddenly about four feet over our heads, we could see thousands of fireflies, twinkling like the stars. It was a brilliant light show, but it shouldn’t be happening two miles inside the earth; the oxygen levels continued to rise the deeper we went.
“Q, What do you make of it?”
“I don’t know Manny, must be another exit, or an opening to the surface? I really don’t know.”