Voyage into Slavery. Chapter 20
A voice was inside Jennings’ head. It was a woman’s voice, and it was calling his name. He vaguely wondered who it was, as the darkness slowly lifted. As he began to recover, the woman’s voice increased intensely, until he realised that he was being shouted at.
‘John! Answer me! Are you okay?John, please!’ It was Sarah’s voice in his headset.
‘Sarah?’ he managed a weak response to her urgent calls. The relief was fully evident in her tone, as she finally heard him.
‘Are you alright? I thought I’ d lost you. ‘
Jennings rubbed the back of his head gently. ‘Takes more than that to beat me. ‘He glanced around him. There was the sound of the ship’s engines very close. He knew that, he must be somewhere deep inside the ship. Why had they put him here? In fact, why was he still alive? He then saw the answer,
‘Damn!’ he cursed.
Sarah’s voice came back, anxious. ‘John, what is it?’
Jennings carefully approached the long line of bombs that had been placed all around him. He could see that these were different, to the ones he’ d disarmed earlier, whilst freeing the girls.
‘I think I’ m in deep trouble here, Sarah. ‘he told his sister. The bombs all had electronic timers, and it looked like, as if they were all counting down. Jennings told her. ‘There are explosives packed everywhere I can see. They all have timers, too. ‘For a moment, he was hit by despair. It looked as if it was impossible to disarm them all. However, he thought of Louise and Kieko, still in Takachi’s clutches. That made up his mind.
Sarah was asking him. ‘Can you disarm them, John?’
Jennings didn’t answer at first, he was examining one of the bombs.
‘Stand by, Sarah. ‘he told his sister. After a few moments, his hopes rose. It could be done, he admitted to himself, but it would take time.
‘Sarah, give me my current location. ‘
She did. ‘You’re well below the waterline. If any bomb goes off-’
Jennings stopped her, ‘Yeah, I know. ‘He knew that this just couldn’t be done, it had to be done. Jennings recalled all the girls, now back in Captain Liu’s power. His two accomplices, Yee and Madam Chen, no doubt, were savouring their captives. He hoped he could get back to them in time, as he went to work, making the bombs safe.
In Liu’s personal quarters, he waited for Madam Chen and Yee to return. He was pleased, that they’ d managed to recapture all the girls Jennings had helped. It would have been a total disaster for him, had they been able to escape. However, he’ d just come back up from the cargo hold, and was satisfied all the women were now back to being securely bound and gagged.
He nodded at the armed guards standing watch over them. Madam Chen and Yee were now supervising the arrival of several, large wooden packing crates. A lot of the bound girls suddenly went into frantic struggles, as they realised what was coming.
Madam Chen sniggered at their useless efforts, ‘Don’t worry, ladies. You’ ll not be going in just yet. ‘She smirked, as she continued to enjoy watching them, still fighting their bonds.
Yee gestured for her to come. The Captain was expecting them. When they entered Liu’s room, he was busy leaning over a huge layout of the ship.
‘All of the girls are secure, Sir. ‘Yee reported dutifully.
Liu gave a faint nod, but there were more pressing matters to attend to.
‘Have you found Takachi yet?’ he almost demanded.
Regretfully, Yee shook his head. ‘Nothing. We’ re still searching, but he still has the English girl as hostage. Maybe, if we can find Jennings, that may help. ‘
Liu nodded, ‘Have security check everywhere, and I mean everywhere. I’ d very much like to have Louise back with us. ‘
This made both Madam Chen and Yee smile. Quite clearly, they agreed.
‘Our people won’t be too long. ‘The Chinese woman informed them. ‘We can load up the girls onto my boat. ‘
Liu approved that. ‘I just hope they get here, before a disaster hits us. ‘
Just then, one of the bridge crew respectfully knocked, and after being allowed in, saluted. He was holding several large photographs, he then handed them all over to Yee.
‘Thought you would like to see this, Sir. ‘He stood back, and waited.
All three of them looked, and saw several images of Jennings crouching over the bombs Takachi and his men had placed.
‘So, ‘Liu had his hopes raised, ‘our hero may be able to save the day, after all. ‘
Yee gazed closer at the photos. ‘He’s disarming them?’
‘It would seem so. ‘Liu nodded. ‘I just wonder how many there are to deal with. ‘
There was one more photo, that they were interested in. It showed Louise bound and gagged to a support pillar. She had been expertly tied up to it, the many white ropes lashed over her knees, and her upper body, giving the appearance, that she’ d been welded to the pillar. The picture was also very clear, as Louise’s face showed absolute terror. Liu then gave new orders to the still standing crewman.
‘Get the girl. ‘his voice was sharp. ‘Remember, I want her alive, and in excellent health. ‘
The crewman saluted, and almost ran out, as he left. Liu turned his attention to Madam Chen,
‘I don’t suppose you know anything about this?’
The woman calmly responded, ‘Let’s just say, that I was able to keep Miss Jennings aboard. Takachi took the Yamamoto woman with him, no doubt she’ ll be on the helicopter. ‘
Madam Chen was correct. Inside the helicopter, Takachi smiled to himself. He was still studying his open laptop. Kieko was still held securely tied to one of the helicopter’s seats. She still made quiet mumbles, due to the gag. No amount of shaking her head, in a furious manner, would loosen it. She was totally helpless.
Takachi was enjoying himself, he was watching Jennings disarming the bombs he’ d laid. An evil, menacing smile was visible on his face, as he faced the girl. Kieko shrank back from him. He stroked his hand through her long, silky smooth jet black hair, saying, ‘Well, my dear, time for a little suprise. Your boyfriend has improved his efforts, as you can see. ‘he turned the laptop towards her.
Kieko, seeing Jennings, couldn’t help giving out a slightly more louder mumble through her gag. It made no impression.
Takachi confirmed this, ‘He can’t hear you, my dear. Even if you were in the next room to him, he wouldn’t hear you at all. ‘
Kieko’s eyes were full of dismay, as she still felt the gag tighten over her mouth. There was nothing she could do, to help Jennings.
Takachi then told her, ‘I planted those bombs to keep him busy, so I would be able to get you safely in my hands. Of course, the bombs he thinks he’s disarming, don’t really need that. They are dummies, made to look like the real thing. ‘
He enjoyed the stunned look on the girl’s face.
‘Just a little insurance, to make sure your hero wouldn’t stop me from bringing you here.‘
There was a lot of smug in his tone of voice, as he glanced back at the laptop screen. ‘I can’t wait to see the look on Jennings’ face, when he finds out. Ah, it looks as if he has. ‘
Both captor and captive looked at Jennings’ image, still leaning over one of the fake bombs. They then saw him, stiffen in suprise. Deep down, within the ship, Jennings had suddenly realised, that he’ d been had. The bombs were not real! He was stunned for a few moments by the deception. Then, his face darkened even more, when he heard Takachi’s voice over the radio.
‘My apologies, Mr Jennings. I knew you would discover it sooner or later. My task is almost complete. I shall take Miss Yamamoto with me. Not only will she make a very pretty hostage, but once I’ ve dealt with her father, she’ ll be my personal sex slave, with your sister too. ‘
Jennings was enraged at this, he could hear Kieko’s muffled scream, hearing her future being chillingly told.
He recovered, as he snapped back, ‘I’ ll make sure you’ ll never leave the ship, and I’ ll get the girls back. ‘
Takachi sighed wearily, but responded.
‘So noble. ‘The sarcasm was fully evident, ‘You can try, but I assure you, Jennings. You won’t succeed. ‘
His voice became now filled with lust. ‘Now, if you don’t mind. I think I’ ll enjoy Miss Yamamoto’s company. ‘
Again, Jennings heard Kieko’s muffled cries, and he clenched his fists angrily. He had to help the Japanese girl, he hadn’t forgotten Louise, still bound and gagged, deeper within the ship’s lower levels. He called Sarah on the headset,
‘Sarah, is Kieko in that helicopter?’ Her answer was positive, then he asked her, ‘Can you send any jamming signal to it, maybe get the flight panel to show a major malfunction?’
Sarah told him to wait a moment. Then, she came back, ‘I’ ve managed to send in a virus program, that will show a fuel leak. They’ ll have to look into that, but the program will take a while to take effect. ‘
Jennings was grateful, he thanked his younger sister, and was glad she was there to help him.
Her voice was anxious again, as she said to him, ‘John, please. Watch yourself. I don’t want anything to happen to you, or Louise. ‘
He acknowledged her, saying. ‘Don’t worry. I won’t let anything happen to Louise. I promise. ‘He then began climbing a long steel ladder, that would lead him back up to the ‘Eastern Princess’ upper levels.