Peter crept under the fence, dragging his crutches behind him. Mick was already on his feet, looking down towards the facility further down the hill.
-What do you think is down there? he said.
-I don’t know. I hope we won’t have to run this time, though. I’m not so fast these days.
Peter had broken his leg when he jumped off a container to get out of the old paper factory a month ago. They used to do this, jumping over fences in restricted areas. It had become an obsession.
They walked slowly towards the buildings further down. They could see people moving around, some dressed as scientists, others in guard uniforms. The timing was horrible, with crutches and all, but Mick was always very convincing.
They reached some rows of tube piles giving them shelter, taking them down towards the buildings.
A man came out between the tube rows. Mick pulled Peter in between two piles. They crouched down.
Mick looked up. -He’s gone! Let’s go!
They moved from the tubes to some stacks of cables, and further down to some empty boxes. Peter peered over.
-Look! What is that?
–Woooww… I have no idea, but it’s awesome!
There was a big machine. A circle stood up from the base like some kind of gate. Tall, twenty, maybe thirty feet. A couple of scientists were working on some kind of control panel. Another was tightening some screws on the machine.
One of the guards came, said something they could’t hear. Then they all left. The square was abandoned.
-Come on, we have to check it out!
-I dunno… Peter looked down at his leg.
-Well, you stay here if you want. I’m going!
Mick ran down the last bit. Peter stood and watched from behind the boxes. Damn, he would have loved to go down there as well, but he’d get caught for sure.
Mick ran over to one of the barrack walls, hid behind it. Peter could see people move in a distance, but they were still far away. He saw Mick run out into the square, over to the strange machine. Then he walked over to the control panel.
-No, you crazy fuck. Don’t touch…
Mick sent him a grin and started pushing buttons, pulling levers. The machine started shaking.
An alarm went off. The three scientists came running out of one of the barracks. A guard came running over the field. Mick ran back to the wall.
Soon there were lots of people around. Some where pushing buttons on the control panel, others trying to fix the machine.
A bright light appeared in the circle. A colour show of light and darkness made a three dimensional image inside.
The men stopped working, just stood there, watching the machine. There was a hole in the circle. A hole in mid air, going into some other place, dark and creepy. Peter could see something move on the other side. Figures. Lots of them.
A horde of monsters came out of the hole. One of the guards started shooting. A birdlike humanoid creature grabbed him, stabbed him with his beak, threw him away like a rag doll. A scientist was devoured by a red slime thing moving fast along the ground. A flying creature with tentacles attacked another guard.
Mick ran for it. Behind him a massacre was taking place. Guards were ripped to pieces, scientists melted or crushed. The bird creature pointed at him, screamed a scream of a terror bird.
Peter grabbed his crutches and started humping up the hill. Soon Mick came running up beside him. Peter looked over his shoulder. They were getting closer. He dropped his crutches, ran on his broken leg as fast as he could, forgetting the pain. Mick fell. Peter ran reached him, turned his head. The bird was over him, grabbed him, lifted him up in the air. Mick was caught by a flying creature, pulled along the sand. Peter looked into the monster’s eyes. An evil grin, contemplating its pray before the strike.
The monsters disappeared in thin air. Peter fell to the ground. He looked over at Mick. He was lying a bit away, trying to get up on his feet. The pain was back. His leg. His spine. Everything. Two guards came running towards them.
Boy, are we in trouble now… My mum’s going to kill me… was the last thing that went through Peter’s mind before he passed out.