No lights lit the temple, a lone sentry on duty. The building was under repairs, leaving the structure dark. Brooke hid in the shadows, inside the temple fence, waiting for the sentry to move on, running over the plan.
Sticking to the shadows, they move along the temple wall, slip into the side entrance, where Oliver takes up watch point one, while the rest of the team head for the inner sanctuary. Jarret covers them, while Tanner and Kelsey light the way. I bypass the sleeping eye, crawl under the snake, grab the diamond, and get out. The Death Wheel should be powered down.
The sentry rounded the far temple corner, Brooke raised her hand counting to 10 before giving the signal. They flashed out of the shadows and ran along the temple wall until they reached the door. Brooke opened the door, holding it as the rest ducked in, with Oliver in the rear. Grabbing the door as Brooke slipped inside, he did a final check, then closed it behind him. When he turned around, the team was skirting the altar to the inner chamber. After they were out of sight, he sank back into the shadows, to keep watch through the cracked door.
Kelsey led the way to the icy paths, which blocked the inner temple doors. The combination of her torch in the front and Tanner’s in the rear, made the whole room seem to dance with hidden demons. The row of silent sentinels, faces dark with lack of power, jutted out of the ground like broken teeth. Here, Jarrett took up second watch, while the others approached the dangerous paths.
Brooke knew the treasure lay down the middle path and made her way over to it directly. Tanner took the left path, while Kelsey took the right. Brooke eyed the gullies separating each path, as her heart climbed into her throat. Her knees felt cold and weak, but she couldn’t back out, this was her idea. However, now it seemed more dangerous and ill advised.
Convincing herself it was the dark playing tricks, she took a deep breath. With a final glance at Tanner and Kelsey, she cautiously took the first step. Her foot slid, causing her to overbalance, but she stayed upright, her heart racing. She motioned for the others to take small shuffling steps. The progress forward was slow; time was important, but so were silence and safety.
Tanner stopped partway down his path, planted his feet firmly, and shone his light on Brooke’s path to guide her to the sleeping eye. Once there, Kelsey would stop and shine her light into the entrance of the inner chamber. The air was getting hotter as they got closer, sweat was running down Brooke’s face to sting her eyes. She reached up to wipe her brow and lost her balance.
She let out a squeak while catching herself, flinching as the noise echoed around the room, causing Kelsey to jump and drop her torch, which skittered towards the gulley. Quickly laying flat, Kelsey grabbed it before it slid over the edge and noticed she was only feet away from the sleeping eye. She crawled into position to shine the light for Brooke.
Brooke held her breath as she navigated over the laser beam, only exhaling when she was safely on the other side. She flattened herself to the ground to slide under the snake’s dangling coil, inching along until she was under its body. She could see its ten white teeth gleaming and the diamond just beyond it. Just a bit further and she could-
Oliver burst into the room, “Game’s over, run! Security!”
“What? How?” Tanner asked.
“He heard my phone when my mom texted and saw me running in here.”
The security guard came rushing into the darkened bowling alley. Seeing that there was more than one kid, he threw on the main power by the door and started chasing them. “You can’t be in here! It’s a construction zone!”
Brooke started at the noise, hitting the pinsetter, knocking a pin loose to roll down the alley. She scrambled to grab the errant pin as the machine roared to life around her. She watched the pin spin out of reach to break the ball sensing laser, activating the pinsetter.
It thrust down, pinning her to the ground, slowly rising again, dropping pins over her back. She tried to get back to her knees, but she kept sliding on the pins. The sweeper arm dropped, swinging forward to push a screaming Brooke to the ball pit. The noise of the machinery disoriented her as she tried to find purchase, when the sewn on belt of her raincoat snagged on the pinsetter wheel, pulling her towards the gears.
Hearing the screams, the guard looked and saw the girl being pulled into the machine. He turned to run to the switch, tripped, and landed hard on his wrist. Glancing at his already swelling hand, he ran to the switch.
Brooke’s screams echoed around the room as she tried to pull herself free. With the grinding machine now inching closer, she closed her eyes, not wanting to see what was coming. Bracing herself for the pain, as the machine suddenly stopped.
The guard was now running to her. Reaching in, he grabbed her and pulled. The fabric of the raincoat gave a dry rip as the belt tore free. Once he was sure she was unharmed, he brought her over to the others, while he called the police. Walking off muttering about damn 10 year olds and absentee parents.
Brooke looked at the others, who were all staring at their feet. “I’m sorry guys. I guess our diamond job is a bust.” The group nodded in sullen agreement, until Jarrett burst out laughing, “Well, not totally.” he said pointing at Brooke’s rain coat. Confused, everyone looked over to see that the hole where the belt tore away, was in the perfect shape of a diamond.