The Keepers

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Chapter 25

Anderson’s Bar and Grill was pretty busy for a Tuesday evening. The crowd was a mixture of young and old, with the local college students closer to the stage and the older crowd closer to the bar and restaurant section. That was where Alex and Stephen were sitting, nursing beers and waiting on a phone call from Reggie. He called earlier saying he had good news but for them to wait here for further instructions. The two men had just flown into Denver that morning and were still exhausted.

“Are you sure we’re at the right place?” Alex was no stranger to bars, but he was getting a little anxious just sitting here waiting. They had been there for over an hour with no word from Reggie.

“That’s what he said. Relax, have another beer. I can think of worse places to be. The band isn’t half bad, a few cute girls. It’s a nice distraction if you ask me.”

It was then that a man walked up to the bar where they were sitting and ordered a beer. He looked straight ahead while the bartender went to get his order. They were taken aback when he said out of nowhere, “Second bathroom stall, inside the tank.” The man paid for his drink, then walked back towards the stage. Alex and Stephen looked at each other to make sure they weren’t mistaken.

“You did hear that right?”, asked Stephen.

“I did. You want to go check it out?”

“I’ll be right back. Pay the tab and meet me out front.”

Stephen made his way to the men’s room and was hoping the second stall was empty. Once he realized that it was, he went in and locked the stall door behind him. Inside the tank he found a plastic bag with a plastic tube inside. He wasn’t about to open it in public, so he put it in his jacket pocket, checked to make sure no one was waiting for him outside and walked out the door.

Alex was waiting outside, checking his watch every so often waiting on his friend to join him. Finally, Stephen walked out the door and walked right past Alex, motioning for him to go to the parking lot and get in the car.

“What is it? Did you find anything?”

When they were inside the car, Stephen reached inside his pocket and pulled out the plastic tube. As Alex looked on, Stephen took off the top and pulled out a rolled up piece of paper. On the paper was a jumbled mess of letters and numbers, some sort of coded message. It was obviously a photocopy, but the writing was very clear. The two friends looked at each other in amazement, each hoping that they already had the key needed to break this code.

If they were right, then they were looking at the names of the next generation of ‘The Keepers’.

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