No Man's Land - A Russell Carter Thriller

No Man's Land - A Russell Carter Thriller by Roland Fishman

Book: No Man's Land - A Russell Carter Thriller by Roland Fishman Read Free Book Online
Authors: Roland Fishman
property. The speedo hovered just under ninety miles an hour. They’d travelled in a comfortable silence for fifteen minutes. Both liked to still their minds and clear their thinking before a job.
    Before leaving, Carter had watched Erina put on the black wig for her encounter with the gate guard. She then slid a small Beretta into the Gore-Tex holster under her left armpit and finally placed a pack of drug-tipped darts, an Emerson throwing knife, a cigarette lighter and a packet of Marlboro into her leather shoulder bag. She didn’t smoke, but cigarettes often came in handy when you needed information from an uncooperative source. His weapons were tucked into his daypack, lying at his feet.
    A still, bright light loomed ahead of them to the right, a blazing beacon in an ocean of dark. Erina veered off the bitumen, hit the brakes and killed the headlights.
    Carter felt a slight rush of adrenalin quicken his heart rate.
    She pointed at the light, about half a mile away at a diagonal angle from where they were parked. “That’s the gatehouse where my dream date awaits me.”
    “Let’s hope he doesn’t turn into a nightmare.”
    “Whatever, I’ll handle him.”
    Carter grabbed his daypack and stepped out of the vehicle. He climbed onto the four-wheel drive’s crash bar, took out his night-vision binoculars and studied the small building. Two bright lights mounted on its roof threw out a fifty-foot arc of light, illuminating a high barbed-wire fence, which presumably cordoned off Woodforde’s inner compound.
    Erina stood on the road beside the four-wheel drive. “To get there,” she said, pointing down the highway, “we turn right up ahead, travel three hundred yards along a dirt road and cross a cattle ramp.”
    He scanned the grounds beyond the light and noted the dark shadows of two utes parked about fifteen yards from the gatehouse.
    “I thought you were expecting just one guard,” he said.
    “That’s what he said.”
    “Looks like there’s two. Maybe your boyfriend was thinking along the lines of a threesome.”
    Erina ignored him.
    He turned his head and looked out into the darkness. To his left the moon shone behind a single majestic gum, creating a ghostlike silhouette. Already the plan was bending out of shape.
    “Whatever you’re thinking,” she said, “there’s no time for second-guessing. We have to go in. Now.”
    He turned to face her. “Agreed.”
    —
    It took Carter three minutes to organize himself in his hiding place underneath the chassis of the four-wheel drive.
    He lay in a sling he’d created from a hessian bag, suspended eight inches above the black bitumen with his feet pointing toward the front, parallel to the highway. His nose just cleared a hot metal pipe and rope dug into his back, thighs and calves.
    The engine purred to life and the vehicle moved down the highway toward the turn-off to the gatehouse at around twelve miles an hour. He twisted his head in an effort to avoid the harsh fumes of engine oil. Not exactly first class, but it would get him through the front gate.
    In his left hand he gripped one of the suspension ropes. In his right he held the Glock 18 close to his chest, fitted with a silencer. He hoped he wouldn’t need the weapon but it was best to be prepared. The four-wheel drive’s spare keys were tucked away in his pants pocket.
    He felt the vehicle brake, then they turned right off the smooth highway and rumbled along a gravel road.
    The four-wheel drive decelerated further, rattled over a cattle grid and then came to a halt.
    He heard the front window slide down and an intercom buzz. “I’m looking for Pete Stanley,” Erina said. “He’s expecting me.”
    A hoarse, raspy voice crackled, “State your name.”
    “Nicole Davey from Screen Australia.”
    “Are you alone?”
    “Yes.”
    “Come on in. Don’t exceed five miles an hour and stop at the gatehouse. Understood?”
    “Absolutely.”
    Carter heard the gate click open. The four-wheel drive

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