Lab Rat part 80

Posted: April 22, 2011 in Fiction, Test Subject
Tags: ,

There’s a line of cars directly in front of me. I clutch, brake, and spin the wheel left. The van tips up on two wheels and slams back down as I straighten the wheel. The tires scream in protest. I’d care more if this were my van. “Hey Dad, I need you to get directions to the hospital.” I shift up and floor the gas pedal.

“Didn’t your vision or whatever show you how to get there?” He still doesn’t sound like he believes me. I roll my eyes.

“That’s not quite how it works. I didn’t have time to take notes.” I reach into my vest and pull out my phone and the data card. “Here, put this together.” I hold it out for him and swerve around a line of stopped cars at a light. I hear honking and screeching. I laugh out loud.

“Don’t get us killed, kid.”

“I’ve always wanted to do that.” Dad takes the phone. Oncoming traffic is busy, and my lanes are going too slowly. I steer the van onto the dashed line. The gap between cars isn’t quite big enough. A compact car on my right and an SUV on my left complain by grinding and sparking as I force the van between them. I fight the steering wheel to keep us straight. I don’t really want to cause an accident, but the roads are going to get pretty crowded with flashing red and blue. I don’t see any pedestrians, so I nudge the compact car onto the sidewalk and keep going.

“You know if I turn this on, Johnson’s going to know where we’re at, right?”

“I know. We need the map, and I think he’s got an inkling of my whereabouts anyway.”

“Good point.” I hear him snapping together the phone case. “Alright, it’s loading.” He turns to the back. “How we doing, honey?”

“That helicopter’s on us!” Jennifer yells. This isn’t going to be good. I hear gunfire as I force my way through another set of cars. Geez , couldn’t these people stagger themselves? This thing isn’t exactly nimble, but I’d be doing a lot less damage to everyone. I should have taken the sidewalk.

“Is that us shooting at them?”

“Yeah,” Dad says. “I don’t think we have the firepower to bring down that bird though.”

“I thought this van belonged to SWAT.”

“Well, maybe they still want to take you alive.” There’s a gap in oncoming, so I swerve to the other side of the street. “Phone’s working,” Dad tells me.

“You know how to work it?”

“Son, I should smack you.” Apparently being in control of a three thousand pound bullet affords me a little protection.

“Ground units are on us!” Jennifer yells from the back.

“Get the map going and help her out,” I tell Dad. I can feel the dirty look boring into the back of my head. I blow through another intersection. At least this time the green light was mine. I cut back to the right side, but I cut it too close. I watch in the rear view as a small purple pickup careens off the street and into a parking lot. Oops. Hope that person was wearing a seatbelt. I feel bad for a second, but then I remember that everyone thinks I’m a terrorist now anyway. I can’t really get madder at Johnson at this point, so I let it go.

I don’t know what the hell happened today. I was doing pretty good all morning, but by the time I got to practice, my mood was in the toilet. I still fought well and all, but I wasn’t my usual effervescent self afterward.

Whatever.  I can take anything except giving up. 

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