Monday, 31 December 1990

Anglo-Force: The Cowboy Chapter 2

    The clearing up operation at Heathrow took about an hour and a half. White Knight, Star Man and Fire Master had stayed behind to lend a hand. Cowboy and Running Bear were taken to Scotland Yard for questioning, where the FBI in America would be contacted. Extradition proceedings were expected to start the next morning. The Anglo-Force members took the sky-jet back to the mansion.

    When they arrived back at the mansion White Knight walked along the corridor to the infirmary. As he walked he heard a noise he hoped he would, the sound of a baby crying. He walked into the infirmary. The first thing he saw was Katrina lying in the bed, with the baby in her arms. Watt sat on the bed next to her. Both had broad smiles on their faces.
    “It’s a boy, Arthur!” smiled Watt. “It’s a boy!”
    White Knight walked over to the bed. He kissed Katrina and shook Watt’s hand.
    “Congratulations, James.” he said. “What are you going to call him?”
    Magus, who was also in the infirmary, walked over to the bed.
    “I think Phineas is a good name.” he said.
    “Phineas Watt does not quite sound right.” said Watt.
    Watt turned to Katrina.
    “I suppose this means that we’ll have to do the honourable thing now!” he said.

    Rush hour in London was possibly one of the worst times of the day you could take two criminals in a police van to Scotland Yard. The traffic on this day seemed to be worse than it usually is. The police van, along with it’s escort, was caught up in the worst of the traffic. Inside the van both Cowboy and Running Bear were handcuffed to two policemen. The van was dimly lighted. One of the policemen banged on the wall. The small window from the front opened.
    “What’s going on? What’s the hold up?”
    “Bloody rush hour traffic. It’ll take ages before we get out of this.”
    The driver closed the window. Cowboy looked at the policeman he was cuffed to.
    “Have you got a cigarette?” he asked.
    “You’re not allowed to smoke in here.”
    “Come on now. One cigarette won’t hurt, will it? At least give the condemned man one wish.”
    The policeman paused.
    “All right then. But don’t tell the super about this.”
    The policeman took a packet of cigarettes out of his pocket and gave one to Cowboy. He then took out his lighter and lighted the cigarette.
    “Can you let one of my hands go?” Cowboy asked.
    “I can’t do that.”
    “Hey, I can’t smoke if both of my hands are behind my back, can I?”
    “All right then.”
    The policeman again reached into his pocket and took out his keys. He unlocked the cuffs, releasing Cowboy’s hands. The American rubbed his wrists and then took the cigarette out of his mouth. He let out a long, slow puff. He then raised the cigarette to his mouth again. But instead of putting it back into his mouth he jerked suddenly and put the cigarette in the policeman’s eye. He let out a huge cry of pain. Then he kicked the policeman that Running Bear was cuffed to in the stomach, severely winding him. Running Bear stood up and head butted him, breaking his nose in the process. Cowboy then elbowed the policeman he had attacked in the cheek, smashing his cheekbone. Cowboy then reached into the policeman’s pocket, grabbed the keys, and released Running Bear. The driver in front opened his small window, but as soon as he did a fist knocked him out. Cowboy then walked over to the van door and kicked it open. The escort behind them had no idea what was happening as Cowboy and Running Bear jumped onto their bonnet. As they ran over the car they smashed the front and back windscreens. After running over a few more cars they made their way down the street, and seemingly to freedom. After a few minutes of running they ducked into an alley.
    “What now?” asked Running Bear.
    “We have some unfinished business with one of the old tribe.” said Cowboy. “We get him deal with him, and then try to make a few contacts here. No matter what we can’t stay in London too long. This place will be swarming with cops in a matter of minutes. And I have a hunch our old ‘friend’ will be at school now.”

    Simon Kennedy returned to the House of Commons. He sat in his office working out the final plans for Anglo-Force. He had his television switched on. He knew there had been a hijacking at Heathrow Airport but he did not know who had been involved. Then there was a news flash. It gave the news of the prisoner’s escape. Kennedy watched in shock as the newsreader gave the names of the prisoners, Cowboy and Running Bear. After the news flash had finished Kennedy picked up his telephone.
    “Have my car brought round. We’re going to my son’s school.”

    The police were swarming over London like bees. Somehow they knew that Cowboy and Running Bear were still in the city. They were correct. They had made their way to the south-west of the city, because their target was situated in that area at the City of London College. This college had only been open ten years, but it had already gained a worldwide reputation. Children of some of the richest people in Britain came here, and it was the current place of learning for Christopher Norris, adopted son of the new Home Secretary Simon Kennedy, and who was also known as Axe Kid. The young native American had studied here since the previous September and he had temporarily retired his Axe Kid persona.
    Outside the winter night was beginning to draw in. It would be the perfect cover for Cowboy and Running Bear to attack. The reason for their finding Axe Kid was quite simple. Sixteen years ago, when Norris was very young, Cowboy had tried to turn his native American tribe into slaves for his own use. Only one of the tribe co-operated with him, Running Bear. The others refused. For their refusal, they died, all save Norris and his elderly grandfather, who died from his injuries soon afterwards. It was on his grandfather’s death bed that Simon Kennedy promised to take care of his grandson as if he were his own, which he duly did. Now Cowboy and Running Bear sought Norris, attempting to finish the job they had started some sixteen years earlier.
    Cowboy and Running Bear sat in a car they had stolen opposite the college.
    “When do we go in?” asked Running Bear.
    “We don’t.” said Cowboy. “We wait outside for Norris. Hopefully it won’t take too long. I’ve waited sixteen years for this. It was lucky we had the chance to do this.”
    “Perhaps bad idea.” said Running Bear. “Many police looking for us. Should have made attempt to leave city.”
    Cowboy stared at Running Bear.
    “I’m running the show here. You do as I say.”
    Then another car drew up outside the college. The door opened and out stepped Simon Kennedy on crutches. Cowboy was now cursing.
    “Damn it! I was hoping that good for nothing wouldn’t show up!”
    “He is cripple.” said Running Bear. “He is no threat!”
    “He’s the boy’s father!” said Cowboy. “Don’t you remember? He’s the one who attacked us at the reservation, he was the X-Kid!”
    “X-Kid no longer. He is cripple.”
    “He’s still in the way. We must deal with him.”
    Kennedy walked through the corridors of the college until he came to the dorm. He soon found Norris’ room. He opened the door and found Norris busy studying. He was pleased to see his adopted father.
    “What are you doing here?” he asked.
    “There is no time to talk.” said Kennedy. “We must leave.”
    “Why?”
    “I told you there is no time. We will go to the Anglo-Force mansion. We will be safe there.”
    A few minutes later Kennedy and Norris left the building. Their drive stood outside their car, holding the door open for them. Then it happened. Before they could do anything an axe flew past their heads and imbedded itself in the driver’s back. He slumped to the ground. Kennedy and Norris turned round and they saw who Kennedy hoped they would not see, Cowboy and Running Bear. The two Americans leapt into action. Running Bear charged at Kennedy, knocking him off his feet, while Cowboy leapt at Norris. A kick to Norris’ head knocked him off balance, and another blow to his stomach knocked him off his feet. Cowboy then took his gun from it’s holster, cocked it, and aimed at Norris’ head.
    “Now, boy, you will die, just as the rest of your tribe did!”
    But before he could pull the trigger an energy blast from above knocked the gun from his hand. Cowboy looked skywards to see Star Man hovering above him. Another blast, this one of fire, hit the ground behind Cowboy. He spun around and saw Fire Master hovering above.
    “Running Bear!” he cried.
    Running Bear could not answer. He was too tied up battling White Knight.
    “Let’s get outta here, Running Bear!” Cowboy screamed.
    Running Bear knocked White Knight off his feet and soon joined Cowboy in retreating. Star Man and Fire Master took off after them, but the two Americans seemed to be able to keep ahead of them. After a few more minutes Cowboy and Running Bear ducked into another alley. Luckily for them Star Man and Fire Master flew straight past the alley. A few minutes later Cowboy peered out of the alley. He saw Star Man and Fire Master in the distance, so he ducked back in. When he returned to the alley he saw someone at the other end. It was Running Bear because he was near Cowboy.
    “Who are you?” Cowboy called.
    The man walked out of the shadows. He was tall, with short black and hair, and he wore a black and red costume which appeared to be some sort of uniform.
    “You are the one known as Cowboy, and your friend here is called Running Bear. It never ceases to amaze me that people from your century had such silly names!”
    “What do you want boy?” asked Cowboy.
    “I am merely offering you a chance to escape, to get away from those who are chasing you.”
    “You can get us out of this country?” said Cowboy. “You can get us to the middle east?”
    “To the middle east and further, my friend. All I ask of you is that you help me at some point in the future.”
    “Just get us outta here, and to the middle east, and then we’ll talk terms.” said Cowboy.
    “It shall be done.”
    The man snapped his fingers. There was a flash of light, and all three of them were gone. Cowboy and Running Bear soon found themselves in the desert. The third man was nowhere to be seen.
    Back in London Star Man and Fire Master continued their search of the area from the air. White Knight searched from the ground. They could find no sign of the Americans. They returned to the college. Norris was helping Kennedy to his feet.
    “Are you okay?” White Knight asked.
    “Just.” said Kennedy. “Did you find him?”
    “We looked everywhere.” said Star Man. “I don’t know how but he gave us the slip.”
    “Well keep looking.” said Kennedy. “You must find them!”
    “We won’t find anyone in the dark Simon.” said White Knight. “They could be anywhere. There’s no point in looking tonight. The police will get onto it first thing in the morning.
    White Knight was correct. There was indeed no point in searching for Cowboy and Running Bear because they were thousands of miles away. But soon they would be further away, thousands of light years away.