Okay—what's he here for?
To guard me. To make sure I stay put. No matter what.
“Well, all right,” he said to Tremain in a softer, more conciliatory voice. “If that's what you all think.”
Tremain relaxed a little. “It really is.”
“Well, let's go in and put on the coffee. I could use some. My head aches. And we'll have to get going early in the morning... “He stopped and looked at Tremain. “You are going to help out, aren't you? That's part of it, isn't it?”
Gardener nodded It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница. He looked at the shed for a moment, and in the fading light he could see brilliant green tattooed in the small spaces between the boards. For a moment his dream shimmered almost within his grasp—deadly shoemakers hammering away at unknown devices in that green glare. He had never seen the glow as bright as this before, and he noticed that when Tremain glanced in that direction, his eyes skittered away uneasily.
The lyric of an old song floated, not quite randomly, into Gardener's mind and then out again:
Don't know what they're doing, but they It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница laugh a lot behind the green door... green door, what's that secret you're keepin”?
And there was a sound. Faint... rhythmic... not at all identifiable... but somehow unpleasant.
The two of them had faltered. Now Gardener moved on toward the house. Tremain followed him gratefully.
“Good,” Gardener said, as if the conversation had never lagged. “I can use some help. Bobbi figured we'd get down to some sort of hatchway in about two weeks... that we'd be able to get inside.”
“Yes, I know,” Tremain said without hesitation.
“But that was with two of us It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница working.”
“Oh, there'll always be someone else with you,” Tremain said, and smiled openly. A chill rippled up Gardener's back.
“Yes! You bet!”
“Until Bobbi comes back.”
“Until then,” Tremain agreed.
Except he doesn't think Bobbi's going to be back. Ever.
“Come on,” he said. “Coffee. Then maybe some chow.”
“Sounds good to me.”
They went inside, leaving the shed to churn and mutter to itself in the growing dark. As the sun disappeared, the stitching of green at the cracks grew brighter and brighter and brighter. A cricket hopped into the luminous It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница pencil-mark one of these cracks printed onto the ground and fell dead.
A Book of Days—The Town, Concluded
Thursday, July 28th:
Butch Dugan woke up in his own bed in Derry at exactly 3:05 A. M. He pushed back the covers and swung his feet out onto the floor. His eyes were wide and dazed, his face puffy with sleep. The clothes he had worn on his trip to Haven with the old man the day before were on the chair by his small desk. There was a pen in the breast pocket of the shirt. He It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница wanted that pen. This seemed to be the only thought his mind would clearly admit.
He got up, went to the chair, took the pen, tossed the shirt on the floor, sat down, and then just sat for several moments, looking out into the darkness, waiting for the next thought.
Butch had gone into Anderson's shed, but very little of him had come out. He seemed shrunken, lessened. He had no clear memories of anything. He could not have told a questioner his own middle name, and he did not at all remember being driven to the Haven-Troy town line It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница in the Cherokee Hillman had rented, or sliding behind the wheel after Adley McKeen got out and walked back to Kyle Archinbourg's Cadillac. He likewise did not remember driving back to Derry. Yet all these things had happened.
He had parked the Cherokee in front of the old man's apartment building, locked it, then got into his own car. Two blocks away, he had stopped long enough to drop the Jeep keys into a sewer.
He went directly to bed, and had slept until the alarm clock planted in his mind woke him up.
Now some It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница new switch clicked over. Butch blinked once or twice, opened a drawer, and drew out a pad of paper. He wrote:
I told people Tues. night I couldn't go to her funeral because I was sick. That was true. But it was not my stomach. I was going to ask her to marry me but kept putting it off. Afraid she'd say no. If I hadn't been scared, she might be alive now. With her dead there doesn't seem to be anything to look forward to. I am sorry about this mess.
He looked the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница note over for a moment and then signed his name at the bottom: Anthony F. Dugan.
He laid the pen and note aside and went back to sitting bolt upright and looking out the window.
At last another relay kicked over.
The last relay.
He got up and went to the closet. He ran the combination of the wall-safe at the back and removed his . 357 Mag. He put the belt over his shoulder, went back to the desk, and sat down.
He thought for a moment, frowning, then got up, turned off the light in the closet, shut the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница closet door, went back to the desk, sat down again, took the . 357 from its holster, put the muzzle of the gun firmly against his left eyelid, and pulled the trigger. The chair toppled and hit the floor with a flat, undramatic wooden clap—the sound of a gallows trapdoor springing open.
Front page, Bangor Daily News, Friday, July 29th:
DERRY STATE POLICEMAN APPARENT SUICIDE
Was in Charge of Trooper Disappearance Investigation
by John Leandro
Cpl. Anthony “Butch” Dugan of the Derry state police barracks apparently shot himself with his service revolver early Thursday morning. His death hit the Derry It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница barracks, which was rocked last week by the disappearance of two troopers, hard indeed...
Saturday, July 30th:
Gardener sat on a stump in the woods, his shirt off, eating a tuna-and-egg sandwich and drinking iced coffee laced with brandy. Across from him, sitting on another stump, was John Enders, the school principal. Enders was not built for hard work, and although it was only noon, he looked hot and tired and almost fagged out.
Gardener nodded toward him. “Not bad,” he said. “Better than Tremain, anyway. Tremain'd burn water trying to boil it.”
Enders smiled wanly. “Thank It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница you.”
Gardener looked beyond him to the great circular shape jutting from the ground. The ditch kept widening, and they had to keep using more and more of that silvery netting which somehow kept it from caving in (he had no idea how they had made it, only knew that the large supply in the cellar had been almost depleted and then, yesterday, a couple of women from town had come out in a van with a fresh supply, neatly folded like freshly ironed curtains). They needed more because they kept taking away more and more of the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница hillside... and still the thing continued down. Bobbi's whole house could now have fit into its shadow.
He looked at Enders again. Enders was looking at it with an expression of adoring, religious awe—as if he were a rube Druid and this was his first trip from the boonies to see Stonehenge.
Gardener got up, staggering slightly. “Come on,” he said. “Let's do a little blasting.”
He and Bobbi had reached a point weeks earlier where the ship was as tightly embedded in dour bedrock as a piece of steel in cement. The bedrock hadn't hurt the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница ship; hadn't put so much as a scratch on its pearl-gray hull, let alone dented or crushed it. But it was tightly plugged. The plug had to be blasted away. It would have been a job for a construction crew who understood how to use dynamite—a lot of dynamite—under other circumstances.
But there was explosive available in Haven these days that made dynamite obsolete. Gardener still wasn't clear on what the explosion in Haven Village had been, and wasn't sure he ever wanted to be clear on it. It was a It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница moot point anyway, because no one was talking. Whatever it had been, he was sure that some huge piece of brickwork had taken off like a rocket, and some of those New and Improved Explosives had been involved. There had been a time, he remembered, when he had actually wasted time speculating on whether or not the super brain-food Bobbi's artifact was putting into the air could produce weapons. That time now seemed incredibly distant, that Jim Gardener incredibly naive.
“Can you make it, Johnny?” he asked the school principal.
Enders got up, wincing, putting his hands It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница in the small of his back. He looked desperately tired, but he managed a small smile just the same. Looking at the ship seemed to refresh him. Blood was trickling from the corner of one eye, however—a single red tear. Something in there had ruptured. It's being this close to the ship, Gard thought. On the first of the two days Bobby Tremain had spent “helping” him, he had spit out his last few teeth like machinegun bullets almost as soon as they got here.
He thought of telling Enders that something behind his right eye was leaking, then It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница decided to let him discover it on his own. The guy would be all right. Probably. Even if he wasn't, Gardener wasn't sure he cared... this more than anything else shocked him.
Why should it? Are you kidding yourself that these cats are human anymore? If you are, you better wise up, Gard ole Gard.
He headed down the slope, stopping at the last stump before rocky soil gave way to chipped and runnelled bedrock. He picked up a cheap transistor radio made of yellow high-impact plastic. It looked like Snoopy. Attached to it was It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница the board from a Sharp calculator. And, of course, batteries.
Humming, Gardener made his way down to the edge of the trench. There the music dried up and he was quiet, only staring at the titanic gray flank of the ship. The view did not refresh him, but it did inspire a deep awe which had overtones of steadily darkening fear.
But you still hope, too. You'd be a liar if you said you didn't. The key could still be here... somewhere.
As the fear darkened, however, that hope did too. Soon he thought it would be gone It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница.
The hillside excavation now made the ship's flank too far away to touch—not that he wanted to; he didn't enjoy the sensation of having his head turning into a very large speaker. It hurt. He rarely bled now when he did touch it (and touching it was sometimes inevitable), but the blast of radio always came, and on occasion his nose or ears could still spray a hell of a lot more blood than he cared to look at. Gardener wondered briefly just how much borrowed time he was now living on, but that It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница question was also moot. From the morning he had awakened on that New Hampshire breakwater, it had all been borrowed time. He was a sick man and he knew it, but not too sick to appreciate the irony of the situation in which he found himself: after busting his hump to dig this fucker up with a variety of tools which looked as if they might have come out of The Hugo Gernsback Whole Universe Catalogue, after doing what the rest of them probably couldn't have done without working themselves to death in a kind of hypnotic trance, he might not It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница be able to go inside when and if they came to the hatch Bobbi believed was there. But he meant to try. You could bet your watch and chain on that.
Now he set his boot into a rope stirrup, slid the knot tight, and put the Snoopy radio in his shirt. “Let me down easy, Johnny.”
Enders began to turn a windlass and Gardener began to slide downward. Beside him the smooth gray hull slid up and up and up.
If they wanted to get rid of him, this would be as easy a way as any It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница, he supposed. Just send a telepathic order to Enders: Let go of the wheel, John. We're through with him. And down he would plunge, forty feet to the solid bedrock at the bottom, slack rope trailing up behind him. Crunch.
But of course he was at their mercy anyhow... and he supposed they recognized his usefulness, however reluctantly. The Tremain kid was young, strong as a bull, but he had fagged out in two days. Enders was going to last out today—maybe -but Gardener would have bet his watch and chain (what watch and chain, ha It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница-ha?) that there would be somebody else out here tomorrow to keep tabs on him.
Bobbi was okay.
Bullshit she was—if you hadn't come back, she would've killed herself.
But she hung in there better than Enders or the Tremain kid
His mind returned inexorably: Bobbi went into the shed with the others. Tremain and Enders never did... at least, not that you ever saw. Maybe that's the difference.
So what's in there? Ten thousand angels dancing on the head of a pin? The ghost of James Dean? The Shroud of Turin? What?
He didn't know It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница.
His foot touched down at the bottom.
“I'm down!” he yelled.
Enders's face, looking very small, appeared at the edge of the cut. Beyond, Gardener could see a tiny wedge of blue sky. Too tiny. Claustrophobia whispered in his ear—a voice as rough as sandpaper.
The space between the side of the ship and the wall covered with that silvery netting was very narrow down here. Gardener had to move with great care to avoid touching the ship's side and setting off one of those brainbursts.
The bedrock was very dark. He squatted and ran It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница his fingers over it. They came away wet. They had come away a little wetter each day for the last week.
That morning he had cut a small square four inches on a side and a foot into the floor of the bedrock using a gadget that had once been a blow-dryer. Now he opened his toolkit, removed a flashlight, and shone the light into it.
Water down there.
He got to his feet and screamed: “Send down the hose!”
“.. . what?...” drifted down. Enders sounded apologetic. Gardener sighed, wondering just how much longer he himself could hold It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница out against the steady drag of exhaustion. All this Hugo Gernsback Whole Universe equipment, and no one thought to rig an intercom between up there and down here. Instead, they were screaming their throats out.
Oh, but none of their bright ideas run in that direction, and you know it Why would they think about intercoms when they can read thoughts? You “ re the horse-and-buggy human here, not them.
“The hose!” he shrieked. “Send down the motherfucking hose, tripehead!”
“.. . oh... kay...”
Gardener stood waiting for the hose to come down, wishing miserably that he was anywhere else It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница in the world than here, wishing he could convince himself all of it was only a nightmare.
It was no good. The ship was madly exotic, but this reality was also too prosy to be a dream: the acrid smell of John Enders's sweat, the slightly boozy smell of his own, the dig of the rope loop into his instep as he went down into the cut, the feel of rough, moist bedrock under his fingers.
Where's Bobbi, Gard? Is she dead?
No. He didn't think she was dead, but he had become convinced that she was It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница desperately ill. Something had happened to her on Wednesday. Something had happened to all of them on Wednesday. Gardener could not quite bring his memories into focus, but he knew there had been no real blackout or DT nightmare. It would have been better for him if there had been. There had been some sort of cover-up last Wednesday—a frantic cut-and-paste. And in the course of it, he believed that Bobbi had been hurt... taken ill... something.
But they're not talking about it.
Bobby Tremain: Bobbi? Heck, Mr Gardener, nothing wrong with It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница Bobbi just a li'l ole heatstroke. She'll be back in no time. She can use the rest! You know that better'n anyone, I guess!
It sounded great. So great you'd almost think the Tremain kid believed it himself until you looked closely at his odd eyes.
He could see himself going to those he was coming to think of as the Shed People, demanding to know what had happened to her.
Newt Berringer: Next thing you know, he'll be trying to tell us that we're the Dallas Police.
And oh boy, they'd It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница sure all start to laugh then, wouldn't they? Them, the Dallas Police? Oh, that was pretty funny. In fact, that was a scream.
Maybe, Gard thought, that's why I feel so much like doing it. Screaming, I mean.
Now he stood deep in this man-made crack in the earth, a crack that contained a titanic, alien flying ship, waiting for the hose to come down. And suddenly the final, horrible passage of George Orwell's Animal Farm clanged in his head like a death-cry. It was strange, the things you discovered you'd gotten by It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница heart. “Clover's old eyes flitted from one face to another. And as the animals outside looked from pig to man, and man to pig, and pig to man again, it seemed that some strange thing was happening. It was impossible to say which was which.”
Jesus, Gard, cut it out!
Here came the hose at last, a seventy-footer from the volunteer fire department. It was of course meant to spray water, not suck it up, but a vacuum pump had neatly reversed its function.
Enders paid it out jerkily. The end swung back and forth, sometimes It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница striking the hull of the ship. Each time this happened there was a cludding sound that was dull yet curiously penetrating. Gardener didn't like it and quickly came to anticipate each clud.
Christ, I wish he hadn't got that thing swinging.
Clud... clud... clud. Why can't it just clink? Why does it have to keep making that other sound, like dirt being shoveled on top of a coffin?
Clud... clud... clud.
Christ, I should have jumped when I had the chance. Just stepped off that fucking breakwater at Arcadia Beach. July 4th, wasn't it? Shit It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница, I could have been a Yankee Doodle Deader.
Well, go on, then. When you go back to the house tonight, gobble all the Valium in the medicine cabinet. Kill yourself if you haven't got the guts to either see this thing through or put a stop to it. The good people of Haven will probably throw a party over your body. You think they want you here? If there wasn't some of the Old, Unimproved Bobbi still around, I think you'd be gone already. If she wasn't standing between you and them...
Clud... clud... clud It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница.
Was Bobbi still standing between him and the rest of Haven? Yeah. But if she died, how long would it be before he himself was scrubbed from the equation?
Not long, buddy. Not long at all. Like maybe fifteen minutes.
Clud... clud... cl
Wincing, teeth set against that dull dead sound, Gard leaped up and caught the brass nozzle of the hose before it could rap against the side of the ship again. He pulled it down, knelt over the hole, and craned his head up at Enders's small face.
“Start the pump!” he yelled.
“.. . what?...”
Jesus wept, Gardener It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница thought.
“Start the motherfucking pump!” he shrieked, and this time he felt, actually felt his head fall apart in two ragged pieces. He closed his eyes.
“.. . oh... kay...”
When he looked up, Enders was gone.
Gardener plunged the end of the hose into the glory-hole he had cut out from rock that morning. The water began to bubble slowly, almost contemplatively. It was frigid at first, but his hands quickly became numb. Although the trench he was in was only forty feet deep, they had removed a whole hillside in the process of cutting a base level, with It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница the result that the place where Gardener now crouched had probably been, until late June, ninety feet under the earth. Measuring the freeboard surface of the ship would have given an exact figure, but Gardener didn't give a shit. The simple fact was that they seemed to have nearly reached the aquifer -spongy rock filled with water. Apparently the bottom half or two thirds of the ship was floating in a large underground lake.
His hands were now so numb they had forgotten what they were.
“Come on, asshole,” he muttered.
As if in answer, the hose began It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница to vibrate and wriggle. He couldn't hear the pump's motor from here, but he didn't have to. As the water-level in the glory-hole dropped, Gardener was able to see his reddened, dripping hands again. He watched as the water-level continued to drop.
If we hit the aquifer, it's going to slow us down.
Yeah. We might lose a whole day while they figure out some sort of superpump. There might be a delay, but nothing's going to stop them, Gard. Don't you know that?
The hose began to emit the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница sound of a giant soda straw in a giant Coke glass. The glory-hole was empty.
“Turn it off!” he shouted. Enders just went on looking down at him. Gardener sighed and yanked hard on the hose. Enders looked startled, then made a thumb-and-forefinger circle at Gardener. He disappeared. A few seconds later the hose stopped vibrating. Then it began to rise as Enders wound it up.
Gardener made sure that the end of it was perfectly still and wouldn't pendulum before he let it go.
He now took the radio out of his shirt and turned it It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница on. There was a built-in ten-minute delay. He put the radio on the bottom of the glory-hole, then covered it with loose chunks of rock. A lot of the explosion's force would be channeled upward anyway, but this was powerful stuff, whatever it was—enough would be left to tear perhaps three vertical feet of bedrock into chunks which they could quickly load into a sling and power-winch up. And the ship would not be hurt. Apparently nothing could do that.
Gardener slid his foot into the sling and shouted: “Pull me It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница up!”
“PULL ME UP, JOHNNY!” he screamed. Once again there was that feeling that his head was splitting along some rotted midseam.
His wrist-deep plunge into the icy water had dropped Gardener's body temperature perhaps two whole degrees. Nonetheless, a damp and slickly unpleasant sweat suddenly sprang out on his forehead. He looked at his wristwatch. Two minutes had passed since he had turned on the Snoopy radio. From his watch, his eyes moved to the loose pile of chunked granite in the glory-hole. Plenty of time to yank the rocks out and turn off It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница the radio.
Except turning off the radio wouldn't stop whatever was going on inside the radio. He knew that somehow.
He looked up for Enders and Enders wasn't there.
This is how they're getting rid of you, Gard.
A drop of sweat ran into his eye. He brushed it away with the back of his hand.
“ENDERS! HEY, JOHNNY!”
Shinny up the rope, Gard.
Forty feet? Dream on. Maybe in college. Maybe not even then.
He looked at his watch. Three minutes.
Yeah, this is how. Poof. All gone. A sacrifice to the Great It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница Ship. A little something to propitiate the Tommyknockers.
“... start it going yet?”
He looked up so quickly his neck popped, his growing fear turning immediately to rage.
“I started it almost five minutes ago you fucking shit-for-brains! Get me out of here before it goes off and blows me sky-high!”
Enders's mouth dropped into an 0 that was almost comical. He disappeared again and Gardener was left looking at his watch through what was becoming a blur of sweat.
Then the loop around his foot jerked and a moment later he began to rise. Gardener closed his It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница eyes and clung to the rope. Apparently he wasn't quite as ready to sniff the pipe as he thought he was. Maybe that wasn't such a bad thing to know, either.
He reached the top of the cut, stepped out, loosened the loop around his foot, and walked over to where Enders stood.
“Sorry,” Enders said, smiling fussily. “I thought we'd agreed that you'd give me a shout before—”
Gardener hit him. The thing was done and Enders was on the ground, his glasses hanging from one ear and his mouth bloody, before Gardener It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница was even wholly aware of what he meant to do. And although he was not telepathic, he thought he could feel every head in Haven suddenly turn toward this place, alert and listening.
“You left me down there with that thing going, asshole,” he said. “If you—or anyone else in this town—ever does it again, you better just leave me down there. Do you hear me?”
Rage dawned in Enders's eyes. He fixed his glasses back in place as well as he could and got to his feet. There was dirt on his bald head. “I don't It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница think you know who you're talking to.”
“I know more than you think,” Gardener said. “Listen, Johnny. And the rest of you, if you're hearing this, and I think you are, you listen, too. I want an intercom down there. I want some ordinary fucking consideration. I've played square with you; I'm the only one in this town that didn't have to have his brains scrambled to do it, either. I want some fucking consideration. Do you hear me?”
Enders looked at him, but Gardener thought he was listening, too. Listening to other voices It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница. Gardener waited for their decision. He was too angry to really care much.
“All right,” Enders said softly, pressing the back of his hand against his bloody mouth. “You may have a point. We'll put in an intercom, and we'll see that you have a bit more... what did you call it?” A contemptuous flick of smile touched his lips. It was a smile with which Gardener was extremely familiar. It was the way the Arbergs and McCardles of the world smiled. it was the way the guys who ran the nukes smiled when It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница they talked about atomicpower facilities.
“The word was consideration. You want to remember it. But smart guys can learn, yeah, Johnny? There's a dictionary back at the house. You need it, asshole?” He took a step toward Enders and had the distinct satisfaction of seeing the man fall back two steps, the contemptuous little smile disappearing. It was replaced with a look of nervy apprehension. “Consideration, Johnny. You remember. All of you remember. If not for me, then for Bobbi.”
They were standing by the equipment lean-to now, Enders's eyes small and nervous, Gardener's large and bloodshot It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница and still angry.
And if Bobbi dies, your idea of consideration may extend all the way to a quick and painless death. That's about the size of it, am I right? Would you say that just about describes the topography of this situation, you bald-headed little fuck?
“I—we—appreciate your plain speaking,” Enders said. His lips, with no teeth to back them up, pooched in and out nervously.
“I bet you do.”
“Perhaps a little plain speaking of our own is in order.” He took off his glasses, began to wipe them on the It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница sweaty front of his shirt (an action which Gardener thought would only leave them more smeared than before), and Gardener saw a dirty, furious gleam in his eyes. “You don't want to... to strike out like that, Jim. I advise you—we all advise you—never to do it
again. There are... uh... changes... yes, changes... going on in Haven—”
“And some of these changes have made people... uh... short-tempered. So striking out like that could be... well, a bad mistake.”
“Do sudden noises bother you?” Gardener inquired.
Enders looked wary. “I don't understand your p It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница—”
“Because if the timer in that radio is jake, you're about to hear one.”
He stepped behind the lean-to, not quite running, but by no means lingering. Enders threw a startled glance toward the ship, and then ran after him. He tripped over a shovel and went sprawling in the dirt, grabbing at his shin and grimacing. A moment later a loud, crumping roar shook the earth. There was a series of those dull yet penetrating cludding sounds as chunks of rock flew against the ship's hull. Others sprayed into the air, then fell onto It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница the edge of the cut or rattled back into it. Gardener saw one rebound from the ship's hull and bounce an amazing distance.
“You small-minded, practical joking son of a bitch!” Enders shouted. He was still lying on the ground, still clutching his shin.
“Small-minded, hell,” Gardener said. “You left me down there.”
Enders glared at him.
Gardener stood where he was for a moment, then walked over to him and held out his hand. “Come on, Johnny. Time to let bygones be bygones. If Stalin and Roosevelt could cooperate long enough to fight Hitler, I guess It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница we ought to be able to cooperate long enough to unglue this sucker from the ground. What do you say?”
Enders would say nothing, but after a moment he took Gardener's hand and got up. He brushed sullenly at his clothes, occasionally favoring Gardener with an almost catlike expression of dislike.
“Want to go see if we brought in our well yet?” Gardener asked. He felt better than he had in days—months, actually, maybe even years. Blowing up at Enders had done him a world of good.
“What do you mean?”
“Never mind,” Gardener said, and went It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница over to the cut alone. He peered down, looking for water, listening for gurgles and splashes. He saw nothing, heard nothing. It seemed they had lucked out again.
It suddenly occurred to him that he was standing here with his hands planted on his upper thighs, bent over a forty-foot drop with a man somewhere behind him to whom he had just administered a punch in the mouth. If Enders wanted to, he could run up behind me and tumble me into this hole with one hard push, he thought, and heard Enders saying: Striking out like that could It Came Out of the Sky”, Creedence Clearwater Revival 16 страница be a very bad mistake.
But he didn't look around, and that sense of well-being, absurdly out of place or not, held. He was in a fix, and strapping a rearview mirror onto his head so he could see who was coming up behind him wasn't going to get him out of it.
When he turned around at last, Enders was still standing by the lean-to, looking at him with that sulky kicked-cat expression. Gardener suspected he had been on the party-line again with his fellow mutations.