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5. 45 P.M

Water was dripping somewhere and the sound echoed eerily through the underground alley.

Beads of perspiration formed on her forehead.

Imogen felt like pulling off her glasses as she clutched the metal rod tightly. Her knuckles were turning white from the pressure of gripping the rusty metal.

In the dimly lit alley, she was snuggled up between two massive pipes running from the roof of the alley to the damp floor. They felt like pillars. She had been in this uncomfortable position ever since they heard the assassins jump into the underground from the manhole. She had quickly drafted an assault plan with Derek and she just hoped that she wouldn’t flop.

She swallowed hard as the thought of being overpowered and captured flashed her mind.

They had estimated four bad guys.

A shadow caught her attention and it was advancing stealthily. She pressed herself tightly against the crevice created by the two pipes so as not to give her away.

She had to think fast. If she were to come out, the guy might be directly in front of her and may recover quickly but if she waited, he may round the corner and discover her before she got a chance to bludgeon him.

Lying on the floor, just beneath her feet was a rusty tap. Probably it must have broken off from one of the supply pipes. Stealthily, she picked it up and threw it a few meters away from her direction.

It got the result she wanted, as the assassin released shots at that spot and ran towards it. He was so engrossed in the distraction that he did not notice her.

She banged the heavy rod on his head; she hit him again and again until he dropped, a shocked expression on his face.

Rounds of bullet erupted from his machine gun, a bullet ricocheted off a metal pipe and grazed her shoulder. She winced in pain and dropped the weapon; fortunately the guy was already unconscious or even dead.

She heard loud gunshots behind her. For a moment, she thought she was the one being shot at. Her fear was confirmed when she turned. An assassin clad in black overalls stood with his machine gun pointed at her.

She closed her eyes and made a silent prayer, the thought of her so much beloved father flooded her vision and the thought of joining her deceased mother overwhelmed her.

For a split second, nothing happened. Then the man fell on his knees before lying flat on the floor. She almost screeched with relief.

Derek stood behind the man, the pistol in his hand smoking, he holsters the gun.

’’Come on, let’s get out of here. The others would soon figure out that we were not the ones shot dead.” He said, stooping down over the dead man and ransacks him.

“How did you get the gun? I never knew you had one.”

“I tackled a guy down here, you did a good job on that one,” Derek said, as he took the man’s earpiece and dipped it in his own ear.

Imogen smiled proudly and stooped down over the assassin she had taken down. She ransacked him. Unfortunately, his earpiece was damaged in the fall but she took his pen-knife and revolver.

“Can you handle that?” he asked, pointing at the revolver.

“Let me see,” she said, looking closely at it. “It’s a .44 Magnum Taurus Raging bull. I’m sure it’s double action, no big deal,” she shrugged.

“How can a kid like you know so much about guns?”

My dad taught me and I practice on the shooting range in the Presidential villa. The rest I read on Google,” they chuckle.

“What about that? Are you hurt?” he asked, pointing at her shoulder, blood was already gathering on her shoulder blades.

“It’s just a graze. I got hit but it’s not serious,” she moved closer so that he could take a better look at it. He got out his handkerchief.

Folding the arm of her polo, he tied the handkerchief over the wound and tightened it.

“It would hold bleeding for a while. We’ve got to keep moving.” he said.

He called up the blueprint of the school’s underground passages leading to the laboratory from his Smartphone. Using the direction, he leads the way.

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