Mac MacKinnon and the Race for El Dorado

Chapter 15: Treasure of El Dorado

By Dwayne MacInnes

On entering the city, the Germans fanned out. The deafening roar of the river died down to quiet rumble. A few birds flew from the buildings as the Germans approached. Apparently, the fowl must have fallen into the hole and have taken up residence here.

Dr. Strong noticed the dark shapes hanging from inside the opening of the cavern's ceiling. These were bats, which were another of the residents of the subterranean city. They would become livelier as the sun disappeared behind the mountains to the west.

Johann ran from building to building in excitement. The stories where the city had its building's walls encrusted in precious stones were obviously false. So to were the rumors of streets being lined in gold and silver. Nonetheless, the Germans ran from building to building looking for any riches.

All they turned up were some pottery, woven sleeping mats, and a few stone utensils. The closest thing to any precious metal returned to the feet of Captain Wolfgang was some copper rings. The captain coolly looked over at the feverish von Hutten.

"It must be here somewhere," raved the anxious German.

Johann grabbed Dr. Strong by his collars, "Where? Where is the treasure?" Johann screamed in the professor's face splattering it with spittle.

Dr. Strong slowly wiped the spit from his face and composed himself. "This city is itself the treasure. The things we could learn from it are incalculable..."

"Save me your speeches," raved Johann. "Every South American empire was built upon gold. This is no exception and you know it."

"Very well, the gold you seek is more than likely inside that pyramid," Dr. Strong waved his hand over towards the stone structure.

Captain Wolfgang whistled and motioned for his men to search the pyramid. Ten crewmembers and Johann von Hutten ran towards the pyramids carrying their tools. Captain Wolfgang and the two armed guards remained with Rebecca and Dr. Strong.

"If you are correct Herr doktor," Wolfgang said stoically, "you and your daughter will be left at some local village. Provided there are no further escape attempts."

Dr. Strong nodded his head and wrapped his arm around his daughter. Rebecca felt exhaustion overcome her body and sat on the street. She could not believe that one way or another they were at the end of their journey. She just prayed that her father was correct about the treasure being in the temple.

Suddenly, the screams and yells of the German crewmembers escaped from the pyramid's interior. For the first time the Strongs noticed some signs of emotion pass across the face of Captain Wolfgang. He took a few steps toward the pyramid when Johann came running out.

"It's there! It's all there!" yelled Johann as he thrust a golden statue into Wolfgang's hands. The captain studied the scowling expression of the ancient god. The small statue easily had to be twenty-five pounds. A smile spread across Wolfgang's face. The sight of the smile filled the Strongs with dread, for it was cold and lifeless.

"Load the packs and return to the zeppelin," Wolfgang ordered.

Johann smiled broadly and saluted the captain, "Ja wohl, mein herr."

Johann returned to the interior of the pyramid. Wolfgang then motioned for the two guards to join the men already at work within.

"I take it I don't need to waste any men on watching you two. Nonetheless, I'll keep watch over you," Wolfgang said.

* * * * *

Mac and Dan had taken cover inside a two-story building waiting for the Germans to enter the city. The plan was to ambush them as they walked down the main boulevard. However, when Mac noticed Rebecca and Dr. Strong amongst the Germans he held his fire. They needed a new plan.

Mac and Dan held a quiet council as the Germans ran from building to building. They decided to wait until the Germans left the Strongs unguarded. Until then the risk was too great. When Johann violently grabbed Dr. Strong, Mac felt he might have to risk confrontation. He had the Tommy gun to his shoulder aiming at von Hutten when he suddenly let the professor go.

They watched as the Germans ran for the pyramid. Even with only two guards and an officer Mac held his fire.

"Mac," hissed Dan next to his ear. "Look at the officer."

Mac gazed through the dusty air at the officer. At first, he did not see what Dan was getting at. Then he nearly gasped aloud when he realized who he was. Captain Wolfgang, the supposed leader of the Stein Ritter and a German top ace during the Great War. Mac had never confronted the German personally, but all his friends who did never returned alive. He owed Wolfgang a blood debt.

Mac knew Wolfgang by sight because he worked with the British and French secret service trying to hunt the pilot down. He was more dangerous than even the Red Baron. Now after all these years Mac might just have his revenge. Mac put the Tommy gun to his shoulder again and slowly began to pull the trigger.

Dan put his hand on Mac's shoulder forestalling him from firing. "Wait!" Dan whispered loudly.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Douglas Gogerty published on September 13, 2006 8:03 PM.

"Genocide" was the previous entry in this blog.

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