Join Date: Oct 2008
He awoke with a start, roused by some noise which for a moment he was at a loss to identify. Still groggy from sleep he wasn’t sure if it was part of some dream or real. He lurched forward, his hand automatically reaching for his gun. Looking down he found it, firmly in his hand already. He cocked his head to one side. Listening for the sound to come again. But all he felt was the throb of his own head. And then far, far way he thought he heard gun fire, then screams but still so faint that he was sure that he must have been mistaken. He turned his head once more trying to catch the sound again. But it was gone.
Dibble straightened his uniform and moved to the sink. Gun still in hand. Looking deep into the mirror. His face looked pale in the bright light reflected in the tarnished metal. His eyes dark and heavy. Something wasn’t right. Something had changed. He tried to wash the feeling away with the cold water which trickled from the tap. But it didn’t go away. Even the buzz from the light bulb above seemed to have changed.
He had heard stories in the station about cops losing it down here. But he was no rookie. He had been on this beat for two month already, he knew what tricks this place could play on you. No this was something different.
He finally holstered his weapon and made a quick sweep of the room. Pausing briefly, glancing at the bible on the chain. Then made his way back into the corridor.
Dibble paced down the hall, his senses taut. If the sound came again he’d be ready. Fortunately the next few stations along the main drain proved empty, and once again he felt himself relax into the routine of the job in hand. Maybe he had just dreamt the whole thing.
It wasn’t long before he reached the next control panel. It was situated at the far end of the corridor. Here the tunnel split into three. Two smaller corridors lead off the main one. One heading east, the other west. The one on the east wall was sealed with a heavy steel door.
He unlocked the panel and withdrew the phone from it’s receiver. He paused briefly before pressing the ‘speak’ button. As if calming himself before talking. Even though he knew the voice on the other end was automated he didn’t want to give anything away by his tone of voice. So he spoke as slow and steady and as lifelessly as he could muster.
“ Officer 367 ready to begin check. Please display route.”
The voice on the other crackled into life. This time the static was louder and Dibble had to press the ear piece closer in order to catch the words.
“ Officer 367 confirmed. Displaying route update, confirmed”
The throbbing in his head returned and grew stronger. As did the white noise over the line. Suddenly a new tone broke into the signal, then clearer the voice spoke again.
“ Officer 367 confirmed. Displaying revised route update, Code 33 Red Confirm”
Dibble responded uneasily.” Officer 367 confirmed, Code 33 Red Confirmed”
Code 33 Red was a sign that something was wrong. The control panel confirmed this by flashing up the next station in red not yellow. It appeared there was a failure somewhere in the system. This would mean he had to leave the lighted sections of the tunnels and venture into the darkness of the inlet sewer indicated.
Suddenly he heard his name being called. He span sharply, his gun once more gripped tightly in his hand. But he saw nothing in either of the corridors. He realised he still held the phone in his hand. He lifted up the receiver and listened. There was nothing but the sound of the dial tone.
He hung up and locked the panel quickly. Now he was uneasy. Maybe the Drains were getting to him.
He breathed deeply, and focused on the panel. He reminded himself he was a cop and cops don’t get spooked, they just do the job. They follow the orders, and just do the job.
He took one final glance around him and unlocked the steel door. The noise of the water meet his ears once more. This time the deck lead right across the main pipe, connecting with a door at the other side. But the panel lights indicated he would have to venture along the pipe to an inlet twenty yards up stream. He shone his flashlight in the direction shown. He could see the mouth of the inlet from the bridge. Sure enough something was wrong. The water wasn’t flowing as it should. There should have been a torrent of water springing from it to join the main system, but he could see that it barely trickled. Something must be blocking it.
He reached out to the ladder bolted into the damp wall, and began to descend down. Below was a narrow ledge which followed the wall round to the inlet. Carefully he made his way onto it. The ledge was wet and greasy from the constant flow of water which sloshed over the lip of the walkway. The only assistance was a rough linked iron chain which served as a hand rail. Dibble gripped it firmly with one hand, and with the other scouted out the route ahead with his flashlight.
Soon he was at the mouth of the inlet. Another smaller ladder made up of iron rungs stuck out of the concrete and lead up to the opening. Where another narrow ledge awaited him.
Now the only light was that of his flashlight. It’s beam catching the steady flow of rivulets where the water should have been. He then directed it’s light into the darkness ahead. Before him was a shimmering brick surface. Here the tunnel ended abruptly. A small waterfall oozed down the wall. Dibble pointed his flashlight up, he could make out an large iron grill bowing across another inlet higher up. Something must be blocking the flow up there he thought. What it was he couldn’t see, he would have to climb up, to see if he could dislodge it.
The way up was slippery. The rungs in this section were narrow., barely big enough for him to put his foot on. But he reached hand over fist and made his way up. His blew hard as he climbed, it had been a while since he had exerted himself this much, the incident in the Projects had seen to that.
In order to climb Dibble had once more allowed his flashlight to dangle at his side. The beam of light casting swaying shadows all around the walls of the sewer beneath. Finally he had reached the top. Blindly he grabbed the rail and staggered up onto a narrow platform. Reaching down he brought up his light and swept it across the iron grill.
The sight that meet him made him reel. He felt all his senses crashing in upon him. His nostrils were filled by the horrific stench. The beam of light stirred up a mass of swarming flies all around him. He felt a thousand winged bodies roll over his face, forcing him to shut his eyes, and only instinct enabled him to hold onto the rail before the swarm sent him backwards into the darkness below.
He regained his senses and beat back the hoard of flies, using his flashlight to create room enough for him to breath again with out fear of swallowing the vile beasts.
Within moments they had settled once more onto their crawling layers. Feasting upon the mass of rotting meat.
Dibble shone the beam back to the scene before him. There jammed between the bars of the grill was a host of bodies, piled up, one against the other, backing their way into the darkness. Arms and legs binding the bodies together to form a mass of putrid flesh. Dibble breathed hard and recited the words in his head.
“Just do the job, just do the job.” Regaining his thoughts he beat back the pain in his head. A cop couldn’t let himself have the luxury of choosing how he felt. A cop had to blank out his emotions in order to get things done. That’s what his Granddaddy had told his father, and that’s what his father had told him.
Now, he would have to do his job. He aimed the flashlight at the dam of bodies. He could see the water soaked rags and the reflection of tiny eyes staring back at him. Rats!! There shouldn’t of been any rats. Somehow they must have been swept down from the surface along with the bodies. It dawned on Dibble that they must have been killed elsewhere and then dumped, rats and all into the Drains.
But who? Who could kill this many people and have no-one notice? Then, a new fear wrapped itself around him. Something far worse then the sight of the bodies before him.
The Last Cop Chapter 1 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 2 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 3 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 4 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 5 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 6 by Wayne Clayton
The Last Cop Chapter 7 by Wayne Clayton