Outcome of Chapter 19 Plot Hinge: There were no active tropical storms in the Atlantic on June 10th. As a result, Will, Tina, Isabella, her father and Coyote Jack will make it to the lost island of Ma’chavu safely.
And although the seas were calm, the same could not be said for some of the passengers. The biggest source of conflict was between Dr. Medora and Captain Mavis. Coyote Jack had suggested hiring Mavis and it appeared that the good Captain remained unconvinced the island of Ma’chavu actually existed.
“And I’m telling you, there’s nothin’ there!” the Captain bellowed, his nose inches from Dr. Medora’s face. “Nothing on the maps, nothing on radar, bloody well nothing on any satellite images.” This wasn’t the first time Will had heard this argument.
“Just stick to the coordinates I gave you,” Dr. Medora snapped back, clearly having difficulty keeping his composure.
Will shook his head and went to the other side of the ship in a futile attempt to escape the bickering. He joined Coyote Jack at the rail as the Chibi entered a thick patch of salty fog.
“Morning,” Will said.
Coyote Jack turned around and leaned his back on the rail, watching the Captain and Doctor going at it. “Wow. They’re in fine form today,” he said as the argument got louder. “So what do you think – are we ever going to find this island?”
“Yup,” Will said matter-of-factly.
Coyote Jack chuckled. “Oh yeah? What makes you so sure?”
“Because I’m looking right at it,” Will said, a large smile on his face. A dark mass appeared through the dense fog dead ahead. As the Chibi got closer Will could make out trees and craggy cliffs.
“Land ho!” Isabella shouted from inside the wheelhouse. The argument between Captain Mavis and Dr. Medora ended abruptly as all eyes turned to the bow of the ship. They found it. Captain Mavis replaced Isabella at the wheel and she joined Coyote Jack on deck.
An air of solemnity surrounded them as the weight of their discovery sunk in. “It’s beautiful,” Isabella said, her voice choked with emotion. “It’s—”
Before she could finish her sentence however, Tina came rushing from her quarters below deck, pushed between Isabella and Coyote Jack and proceeded to vomit over the side of the ship.
“What are we all looking at?” a greenish-faced Tina asked, wiping her mouth with her sleeve.
So much for solemnity, Will thought.
Captain Mavis stayed with the ship–anchoring beyond the dangerous reefs–while Will, Tina, Isabella, Dr. Medora and Coyote Jack went ashore aboard the bright yellow dinghy equipped with an outboard motor. Isabella and her father were giddy little school kids on the ride to shore, pointing to various things on the island.
Tina seemed eager as well, but Will knew it was an eagerness to get her feet on solid ground again.
Coyote Jack was less enthusiastic, remaining completely silent and actually staring at the horizon behind him.
Disembarking on the sandy beach, Will helped Tina out of the dinghy and joined the others. Dr. Medora removed his backpack and pulled out copies of pages from Kruschack’s journal and began studying them with Isabella.
Will wiped his brow with his arm. It was early morning still and the air was already thick with sticky humidity. The pea soup fog they had sailed through seemed to mysteriously end at the edge of the reef, leaving the island clear.
Will took in his surroundings. Hermit crabs scuttled across the piping hot sand. Fifty feet inland the beach ended at a wall of lush jungle. Moving his gaze upward, Will examined the mountainous terrain of the island. Squinting in the morning light Will realized that the things he originally thought were craggy cliffs were actually ruins. Although thick vegetation grew over their shattered structures, there was no mistaking it: these were manmade. A fresh rush of excitement filled Will.
“Uh, guys?” Tina said. “Who’s that?”
Will looked at Tina who was pointing toward the edge of the jungle. In the blink of an eye Isabella and Coyote Jack had their guns drawn and pointed at what appeared to be a man wearing a hooded cloak.
“Isn’t it a little hot to be wearing something like that?” Will asked.
Tina through her hands up. “Really, Will? That’s your question?”
Coyote Jack kept his weapon trained on the strange newcomer. “I thought this place was supposed to be deserted,” he said, watching the motionless man. “Hasn’t this civilization been dead for like a thousand years?”
If the hooded figure was unnerved at having guns pointed at him, it didn’t show. Without a word he slowly turned around and disappeared into the jungle.
“Well don’t just stand there,” Isabella finally said after a long moment of silence. “Let’s get after him.” Holstering her gun, she pulled out a large machete instead and led the march off the beach and into the dense jungle.
Isabella had little difficulty tracking the mystery man, hacking and slashing her way through the thick underbrush.
“You really think chasing somebody with machetes and guns is really the kind of first impression you want to make here?” Will asked, swatting a huge mosquito on the back of his neck. “Ugh,” Will said, looking at the squashed bug in his hand. Not paying attention to where he was going Will ran into the back of Coyote Jack who had suddenly stopped in front of him.
Will quickly understood why. They had arrived at a small clearing. At the far end stood an archway nearly completely covered with vines. Slivers of sunlight penetrated the jungle canopy, causing the archway to give off a dull glow.
“Gold,” Dr. Medora whispered.
But it wasn’t the gold that captured Will’s attention. Beneath the ancient archway stood the hooded man, his head bowed and arms outstretched as if to welcome them.
“Remarkable,” Dr. Medora said, moving into the clearing. Isabella had lowered her machete but kept it clenched in her fist. Coyote Jack was less subtle, keeping his weapon raised and pointed at the hooded man.
As they made their way across the clearing, the hairs on the back of Will’s neck stood up. Something wasn’t right. And though he couldn’t see his face, there was something… familiar… about the man in the hood.
They arrived at the center of the clearing and Dr. Medora signalled them to stop. “My name is Dr. Carlos Medora,” he said slowly.
The man slowly lifted his head. His hands reached for the hood. Will’s insides turned to ice as the hood was drawn back. The man staring back at them was Agent Isaiah, his eyes burning with anger. “I know who you are,” he said. “Damn you for coming. And damn you for putting me in this position.”
Before anyone could respond, Agent Isaiah struck the inside of the archway with his fist. A deafening roar filled the clearing as the ground beneath Will and the others suddenly collapsed and they plummeted to into inky blackness below.
“Tina!” Will sputtered between coughs as the dust settled in the pitch dark.
“I’m OK,” Will heard her say.
A moment later Isabella and Coyote Jack had cracked a couple glow sticks, shedding light on their situation. They were in a large chamber. The hole they had fallen through was now completely sealed off with rocks and debris.
“We’re trapped,” Tina said, her face smeared with dirt and blood.
“No,” Dr. Medora said, retrieving Kruschack’s journal from under a small pile of rubble. “The Ma’chavus were famous for their booby traps. But they always built in a way out.”
“Famous for their booby traps, eh?” Will said, limping around the chamber and examining the hieroglyphics carved in the walls. “That may have been useful information to have before we strolled into the jungle to chase after a man in a hood. A man, I might add, who just so happens to be Donovan effin’ Isaiah.”
“Save your breath,” Isabella snapped. “I can’t imagine we’ve got too much air in here.”
Will turned his attention back to the chamber walls. “Then let’s get to work.”
Plot Hinge: Memory Match mastery
Time is running out for Will and the others. For this week’s plot hinge, we turn to you, the reader. It’s up to you to save them now.
- If more than 50% of people correctly guess the right password in the poll below, then Will and the others will find a way out of the chamber before their air supply runs out.
- If however, less than 50% correctly guess the right password, then two of the characters will die in the chamber before they can escape.
To find the password, complete the Memory Match game. Upon completion you will receive the password. Return to this page and enter your guess into the poll below. Good luck! Click here to go to the Memory Match game now.
Vote: What is the password needed to escape the chamber?
Bonus Content: Coyote Jack
Why was Coyote Jack looking to the horizon when they were heading to shore? To find out, you’ll need a password to access this bonus content.
- Click here to access the bonus content using the password found at participating libraries.
- Click here to access the bonus content using the password I’ve hidden somewhere on the website. (Hint: About)
Only 2 chapters left! Don’t miss the exciting conclusion to RUN!
Chapter 21 goes live on June 21st! How do you like the story so far? Feel free to leave comments below or email me your thoughts, questions and ideas. And if you haven’t already, be sure to subscribe in the top right of the screen to receive email notifications whenever a new chapter is posted.