Improvised Creative Writing: The San Diego Disaster

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
The entire narrative is improvised. It's essentially a terrorist attack on San Diego, CA. I made a point to keep it under 1000 words so it may be lacking some details, but that is to be expected with experiments like this.

I have no idea what this story will be about. I will simply start writing and let the plot develop. It's an experiment of sorts. Hope you enjoy.

Submitted: June 19, 2015

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Submitted: June 19, 2015

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The birds swoop low, nearly hitting the semi trailer as it speeds away from downtown San Diego, across the Coronado bridge toward the island. A heavyset man sporting a brown handlebar mustache and a matching Padre's cap keeps vice grip hands clamped onto the large steering wheel while pinning the accelerator to the floorboard with a heavy steel toe.

Sirens wail at the massive truck, pleading for it to stop. The men driving the cruisers try also in vain to convince the behemoth to pull over. Stop the vehicle! You are in violation of international law! Every word blasted over the loudspeaker; in vain. The truck wasn't going to stop, not with what was at stake right now. A matter more urgent than life and death.

"How could this possibly have happened?" A skinny, stressed looking, middle aged man paces across a large vacant room.

One of the walls is almost entirely covered with television screens, all but one display images of downtown San Diego. Some showed helicopter footage of the police chase, some showed drone images of the civilian evacuation. The screen in the upper left corner, however, broadcasts the dark silhouette of a woman.

"Agent Myers, pacing isn't benefiting our situation. You'd better start thinking of a plan." The woman's voice is gentle, yet stern and urgent at the same time.

Myers stops to face the woman's obscure face on the screen. Inhale. Exhale. Inhale. "How was I supposed to anticipate something like this?" He shakes his head, "The x-rays didn't catch it, the dogs couldn't detect it. Hell, it even got through the weighing station unnoticed." The thin man is clearly on the verge of losing his composure, "Everything we put in place to prevent something like this failed. They beat us.Inhale. Hold it... Exhale. "They’ve won..."

"Failure is not an option Mr. Myers." The gentleness in her voice was no longer present, "we have to find a way to end this. Now."

The essence of 'calm' is erased from existence while the tension nearly tears the room in half. Agent Myers is lost, deep in contemplation. Shooting it is out of the question... Safely stopping something so massive is practically impossible... If we can get it into the bay, we might be able to minimize casualties...If we could get it into the bay... The room is painfully silent and when Myers notices this, a particularly ominous thought crosses through his mind. The calm before the storm. "Our only option is to shut it down by force."

The truck accelerates over the bridge and smashes through the toll gates without a hitch. With this much momentum, nothing less than a tank could even come close to stopping me. Vice grips still in place. Foot still firmly set. Face still with concentration. The man is mechanical; showing no regard for what he was about to do, showing no concern for his own well-being. There is one thing on his mind and one thing only: Drive.

"I've got eyes on the truck, but there's nothing I can do from here." A young military pilot reports to his superiors from the cockpit of an Apache helicopter. Glancing toward his co-pilot's flashing lock-on indicator light he adds, "we've got a clear shot, but there's no telling what'll happen if we hit him."

"Hold your fire Lieutenant, I repeat, hold your fire," the stern response comes clearly through both pilots' headsets.

"Roger that, sir. Still in pursuit," the pilot scans the ground beneath them, trying to predict the intended destination of the massive vessel roaring through the narrow streets of Coronado island. He's going too fast to turn... "Sir, he's headed for the naval base on North Island." He couldn't understand why it had taken him so long to realize. Of course! What better place than the Naval headquarters?

"Lieutenant, Captain," the commanding voice oozes apprehension as it crackles through the headset, "today, lives are going to be lost. There is no way to avoid that."

The Lieutenant exchanges glances with his partner, they can both sense the question they were about to be asked. "Sir," he acknowledges this truth.

"What I'm about to ask you, it's the hardest position I've ever--"

After a concurring not with his co-pilot, the Lieutenant interrupts his superior officer, "With all due respect, sir, I can't believe you would even ask that kind of question." There is a pause as the pilot gathers his thoughts, "I was already waiting for your permission."

Relieved to hear such eagerness to serve, the radio voice leaves the two men with one last word of confidence, "Godspeed."

Almost there... Vice grips unchanged. Steel toe unmoved. The mechanical man is confident. The truck reaches its top speed, and the engine roars in agony as it fruitlessly tries to accelerate the vehicle. Confidence gives way to diamond concentration. Nothing can stop the speeding truck. Nothing can stop the man with vice hands and steel toes. Nothing, even, can stop the bushy hair growing just above his upper lip. He’s won.

The Apache's co-pilot flips up a red switch cover and beeping fills the cockpit. The air is thick with anticipation. Once we launch the missile it’s game over; for everyone. The patience that the two pilots possess is paramount. They milk the last precious, in defiance of the high-pitched opposition. Missing wasn’t an option. They hear the missile hiss as it accelerates toward the rogue truck, they see the white smoke floating in its wake. They see a light so intensely bright the only logical source must be divine, then they see nothing, hear nothing, feel nothing. They’ve become nothing.

Coronado Island suffered a similar fate, along with several hotels and an entire tourist center which once sat across the bay from where the island used to be. This fact is practically of no concern to Agent Myers or his electronically transmitted superiors, they all have a much more demanding and disturbing fact plaguing their minds. This is only the beginning.

 


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