Halloween Surprise (pt. 28/30)

“Okay, let’s do this,” Lila said determinedly.

She read the number-letter combination out loud in a slow methodical voice, while Ian held the flashlight as close as he could to the text so she could better see the handwritten code.

As Joe and Lila finished keying in the code, Lila called out quietly to Joe, “On the count of one.” She paused briefly. “One!” Together they hit the enter key.

The countdown clock stopped, but the RV began to vibrate lightly and a loud humming noise started at the bottom of the enormous vehicle, which quickly spread.

Lila scanned the monitor in front of her. “Auto shutdown sequence?” she said in disbelief. “This thing should come with an instruction manual.”

“It did,” said Ian wryly, “that’s what we’re using.”

“Great, just great,” Lila griped. “We stopped the imminent self destruct, only to kick start an auto shutdown procedure.”

“And what’s so bad about that?’ Joe asked.

“Nothing potentially, except that the workers who would ordinarily oversee the whole business aren’t here.”