The Invasion, part six of my short story.
The Invasion – part six
Changing direction, Elayne and Mat hurried through the forest, past their school and on to Uncle Tom’s house. They made sure to remain near the tree line or under the cover of the forest at all times. He was standing at the front door when they arrived; it was like he was waiting for them.
“I’ve been expecting you two,” he grunted in greeting. Never one for ceremony he walked inside and into the kitchen where he sat down.
“You want me to tell you about your dad!” It wasn’t a question and he continued, “well, when he first came to me three years ago and told me his theory, I thought he had lost the plot, a total fool and I told him so. But he insisted on giving me this letter for you in case ‘it’ ever happened, that’s what we used to refer the attack to.” He sighed. “I’ve re-read it so many times over the years since the accident but it all seemed a tall tale until this morning’s announcement. He was right damn it. I have no idea how he figured it out, but he was always too smart for his own good, that dad of yours.”And with that he handed Mat a rather dog-eared letter. “Oh and I found this note in the old tree house this morning. We used it as our communication site during the last invasion and after the strange happenings over the past few days, I decided to check it, just in case. It’s not signed but it has his old signature at the bottom, that’s how he used to sign his instructions off.”
Mat, looking increasingly confounded took both letters and sat down on the kitchen bench opposite Uncle Tom, Elayne remained standing behind him.
‘Dear Mat,’ he read in his deep voice so similar to his fathers.
‘There is a lot that you don’t know about the previous invasion, I know your mother and I have never really talked about it, however, if you are reading this my worst fears and suspicions have come to pass and I must tell you a bit about what happened.
The leader of the invasion was a man called Johann Berlitz, he was a foreigner, a narcissist with very lofty ideas of his own self-importance. Prior to invading our valley, it was rumoured that he successfully invaded and took over another valley, closer to his homeland. Intoxicated by his success and power, and growing increasingly deranged, he decided to move on our valley as his second conquest, why he picked us we never found out, but it was reported that his ex wife had distant family in our valley.
We started a revolt against Berlitz, which after a few weeks resulted in his death and our victory. Among his personal effects was a lot of copied paperwork with detailed information on the attack and a few backup plans, including one which I’d almost forgotten until recently, detailing a plot to stage an explosion at the local mine in order to capture as many miners as possible. The plan was crossed out as if dismissed, which is why I’d almost forgotten it. The papers were locked away somewhere safe and out of mind and only a few people, myself included ever read all of them.
With the recent unrest at work, there has been a lot of talk. One recurring name that keeps cropping up is that of Johann Berlitz. I’m unsure what will happen but something is definitely brewing and if anything happens at the mine and people go missing I have a feeling that they will be used against the valley in some way. If my theory is correct I’ll try and get a message to Uncle Tom as soon as possible, he was the main communication man during the last invasion.
I know this all sounds crazy but after leading the resistance in the previous invasion I got to know the enemy pretty well and I can read signs. I haven’t said anything to anyone else yet as it is a very tenuous assumption and I’m not sure anyone would believe me but I’m trusting my instincts.
Take care my boy and look after your mother and sister, I’m relying on you.
The room was so quite you could hear a pin drop, Mat continued to stare at the page, disbelief on his face. “Dad was the leader of the resistance? Why did he never tell me?” It wasn’t really a question, Uncle Tom looked at him before answering.
“A fine leader, a very fine leader indeed,” he was lost in the past for a minute. Shaking his head he continued. “He was the brains behind our ultimate victory and I was his right hand man. I dealt with all the communications; passing on instructions from your dad to the rest of the men and women in the resistance. We were a good team, I guess that’s why he entrusted the letter to me and told you to come to me.”
Looking increasingly dumbfounded and overwhelmed, Mat re read the letter to himself, after which he opened the second note. It was hastily scribbled and brief, instructing the reader to secretly gather the valley’s able bodied inhabitants as well as all the available ammunition and weapons and to assemble in two days time. Map coordinate were given for somewhere deep within the valley. He warned them to be wary of sentries and noted that they were a big group; including all the missing people from the past two days and that they were heavily armed. At the end was a strange symbol, this must be what Uncle Tom had referred to as his father’s signature.
They all sat in silence until Elayne finally broke the quite. “I guess we should get to work” she said straightening up.
Nodding in unison Uncle Tom and Mat rose and Elayne headed out the front door after them; they had plenty to do and not much time.
Over the next two days the three of them spent all day recruiting people, sending them on errands and gathering everything they could find in order to fulfill Mat’s father’s instructions. As it turned out Uncle Tom seemed to be held in high regard by everyone, all the older inhabitants fell quickly into their old roles from the days of the resistance and they were all eager and co operative in carrying out the directive.
To be continued …