Книга Army of Devils. Содержание - 15

"This address is outside of the city. Are you ready to copy down the address?"

"Right. I got a pencil. Go ahead."

Flor memorized the address and the time of the delivery as Shabaka dictated it to his truck crew Shabaka switched off the radio.

As the punks put the radio in the truck above her, Flor racked her imagination for a way to escape. With the information on the place and time of the delivery, Able Team had the opportunity to follow the conspiracy to its source. Whatever the cargo — weapons, terrorists, cash or drugs — the cargo and drivers and truck would provide another lead in breaking the puzzle of the gang siege that terrorized Los Angeles.

But Flor knew she must escape silently, secretly. If Shabaka suspected he had been overheard by a federal agent, he would change the location of the delivery.

How could she escape? She had seen the punks lock both the big cargo door and the office door.

If she left the darkness under the truck, she risked an instant firefight.

If she stayed under the truck and waited, she chanced the punks discovering her.

Flor decided to take the greatest risk, to wait until the punks and their leader left the garage, then drop away from the truck when the opportunity came.

She prayed that the truck would slow for a moment at some point on the route to the town on the Mexican border. Hitting the asphalt at a high speed would not be pleasant…

A voice interrupted her thoughts.

"What's that under the truck?" one punk asked another.

A Kalashnikov rifle gripped in his right hand, a black punk got down on his hands and knees to peer under the cargo truck.

Flor shot him in the face. She scrambled from under the truck and grabbed the AK from his still-twitching hand. Snapping down the safety lever to semiauto, Flor put a single shot through the chest of the other punk as he struggled to unsling the AK on his shoulder.

A brown-skinned youth ran down the stairs. Flor put a ComBloc slug through the center of his chest.

Running around the truck, she came face to face with another Chicano punk. Without raising the Kalashnikov in her hands, she jerked the trigger twice, the first slug smashing through his crotch, the second slug striking him in the top of his head as he doubled over in agony.

Without the strange drug supplied by Shabaka, the punks knew fear. They struggled to aim their rifles with shaking hands as a barefooted young woman in a shimmering dress ran through their midst, killing them.

A sentry at the door turned at the sound of the shots and raised his rifle. He saw the woman with the Kalashnikov. Sighting, he fired his M-16.

Another punk chose that moment to rush the woman. Swinging a machete, he attacked. Flor blocked the blade with the barrel of the Soviet autorifle, then the punk's head exploded with the impact of a 5.56mm slug.

Dodging from the mist of brains and blood, Flor saw another youth rushing her. She threw herself sideways, felt her shoulder hit a truck tire. A blast deafened her and showered her with chips of enamel paint from the truck. Kicking out, she tripped the charging punk.

Flor extended the rifle with one hand. With the muzzle against his face, she fired. The flash illuminated an expression of surprise and confusion as the slug smashed through the youth's eye socket.

Rolling, she gained the cover of a few crates and cardboard boxes against one wall. She shoved through the boxes as slugs pocked the wall around her.

She clicked the Kalashnikov's fire selector down to full-auto and sighted on a muzzle-flash. A burst sent a punk staggering backward.

A dead guy sprawled only an arm's reach away. Flor grabbed his shirt and pulled him into the boxes. From the corpse, she took a web belt hung with AK mags and a .357 Magnum pistol. She took one of the magazines out and held it ready as she searched for targets.

She recognized the voice of the black man, Shabaka. "All of you. Fire there," she heard. "All at once. She's in there."

Spraying slugs at the voice, she dived through cardboard, felt her shoulder hit a heavy crate. Autofire punched the walls and concrete floor as the surviving punks tried to kill her with wild, unaimed bursts.

She took cover behind the heavy crate and waited. She felt several slugs hit the crate, but the two-by-fours and the contents stopped the slugs. She waited, silent, not moving.

"Manuel," Shabaka called out again. "Go take a look."

"Let's shoot her some more first," Manuel answered, then emptied another magazine into the clutter of boxes. Slugs ricocheted and fragmented on the concrete.

Flor felt high-velocity metal rip through one of her legs. But she did not cry out or move, not even as the blood flowed and the pain came. She waited. As the shooting continued, she dropped out the AK's magazine and put in the full magazine with thirty rounds. Counting the one round in the chamber of the AK, she had thirty-one shots.

Then she checked her wound. With her fingers, she found where a tiny bit of metal had hit her leg. Exhaling hard against the pain, she pressed on her flesh and felt the piece of metal in her leg. She would not let the injury slow her.

Shotgun blasts threw cardboard and bits of wood everywhere. Finally, Shabaka stopped the barrage. "She's dead! Now get the body and find out who she was."

The punks searched for her.

Alone on the killing floor, with the rifles of the gang poised ready to take her life away, Flor waited.


At a hundred miles an hour on the deserted freeways, Detective Towers raced to the command center of the joint LAPD, state and federal task force of officers assembled to fight the gang punks terrorizing Los Angeles. He spoke to Able Team in the car as he drove.

"We got Silva cold. Read him his rights, served the warrant, took the evidence. Perfect case."

"What about interrogation?" Lyons had rinsed off some of the gore from the LAYAC slaughter-fest, but blood still obstinately clung to his hair and the hair of his arms. His luggage in the trunk of the rented Ford had provided clean shirts for himself and his partners.

"They're questioning him, but no answers yet."

"What're they doing?" Lyons demanded. "Letting him discuss his case with his legal staff? While those monsters rip Flor Trujillo apart?"

"You still think they've got her?"

Blancanales leaned forward from the back seat. "Lyons, the ones in that truck didn't grab her. Maybe some other gang..."

Lyons interrupted his partner. His desperate worry for the woman he loved did not allow anyone to reason with him. "I figure they somehow got her into that truck. And I figure Silva will know where the truck went. That's all we've got to goon."

"Makes sense to me…" Towers agreed.

"You weren't there," Blancanales told him.

Slowing to sixty miles an hour, Towers left the freeway. He sideslipped through a screaming, two-wheeled left-hand turn, then accelerated. He switched on the siren at the intersections.

In the back seat, Gadgets looked at the boulevard flashing past. "You cops, you drive crazy." He put his hands over his eyes. "Tell me when it's safe to look."

Turning to Gadgets and Blancanales, Towers steered with one hand. "It's part of the benefits package. You can't expect men to go out and face the puke of the world for the pay of a nursery-school teacher. So they give us some perks. Like supercharged Dodges."

"Please," Blancanales asked. "At this speed, it is important that you watch the road."

"What road?" Towers questioned them, his face solemn. "This is a jet plane!"

As the Dodge hurtled through an intersection, it hit a dip where the boulevards crossed. The undercarriage smashed into the asphalt, then the car left the pavement at ninety miles an hour.

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