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by Jim Woods
Description: The holiday in serene and scenic Mexico is anything but, as it unravels into an international kidnapping and drug smuggling terror experience for a busload of tourists from north of the border. A fellow traveler who knows a thing or two about border relations that the tour agents keep to themselves has chosen to violate Mexican law and carry his concealed pistol across the border. With the aid of a couple of ex GIs from past wars who haven't forgotten over the years how to do battle, he saves the day, and the lives of most of the road-trip crowd that was brutally forced from festive to fearful.
eBook Publisher: Champagne Books, 2011
eBookwise Release Date: February 2012
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [51 KB]
Reading time: 29-40 min.
Two police cars angled across the two-lane highway, with blue lights flashing on top, made a substantial and imposing roadblock. An adventurous driver with something to hide and who may have considered speeding past them on the open shoulder, and then outrunning them, would have to think twice. With one cruiser pointed in each direction, a rabbit would have a cruiser on his tail in no time. Carlos indicated no such notion: he was already reaching for his wallet when the two troopers climbed aboard.
When Janice clutched hard at my arm I patted her hand and tried to soothe her. "The last time I was stopped by these guys down here," I related, "I found it more or less convenient to buy a strip of ticket-votes for one of their daughters, or cousins, whoever. Supposedly, she was in a Senorita Sonora contest of the sort where the winner was not necessarily the prettiest but the one who could bring in the most paid votes. I doubted that such a contest really existed, but my twenty bucks was well spent, I figured; at least I was passed through the roadblock."
Two uniformed officers entered the bus. I craned my neck in order to see out the front window, and noted that each car still was occupied by a cop behind the wheel. Four cops; I probably wouldn't get by with just twenty bucks this time. I wondered if Sonora Byways would consider policia bribes legitimate expenses on my cheat-sheet.
One of the uniformed policemen wandered through the coach, looking left and right, seemingly examining passengers' faces for some particular recognition, but saying nothing. I was sure he was going to stop and question the three Mexican men who obviously were out of place on the luxury tour bus. The last of the three to board slouched low in his seat as the officer approached and tilted his hat further over his face. Ah, he's the one they're after, I surmised, but no--the officer walked on by. The officer stood at the back of the bus, hand on the sidearm at his belt, I noticed, somewhat suspiciously. The officer who remained up front with Carlos spoke:
"Ladeez and gentlemen: I warn you all to do nothing foolish and to cooperate. You will not be harmed if you do as you are told."