Allen wiped the sweat from his eyes.

Google’s Claymore information had not been encouraging. He’d put his phone away and scanned the room. A table and chairs, some dishes, dirty towels. The refrigerator, which was too far away to use as a shield from the blast. He allowed himself a morbid chuckle as he remembered that ridiculous opening scene from the fourth Indiana Jones movie.

But this was no movie, and the fridge was not going to save him.

Allen examined the trigger cord. Whoever set this trap had stapled it down to the floor, from the lever under his foot all the way around to the counter under the mine. Allen pulled out his pocket knife and squatted down, careful to maintain pressure on the trigger plate. He pried up the first couple of staples, then slid his fingers under the cable and pulled upward, popping the remaining staples one at a time toward the mine, until he had several feet of slack.

He then scooted toward the mine, sliding his foot along with the trigger, until he was alongside it at the counter. The mine sat on its own secondary trigger, so there would be no moving it. He crouched down, his back to the counter, and reached for a table leg, pulling the heavy piece of furniture toward him with a deep, nails-on-chalkboard screech.

Pulling the table all the way over him, so he now sat under it, back to the wall, with the table against the counter and the table top between himself and the mine, Allen plugged his ears, pressed his chin into his chest, and released the pressure on the trigger.

The Claymore blew outward with a chest-pounding, ear-splitting blast, shredding everything in its path and taking the door Allen came in though clear off its hinges. The brunt of the horizontally-directed explosion had shot out over Allen’s head, above the table top. Allen coughed, choking on the cloud of powdery dust in the room, which now smelled like fire and pressboard and sulfur.

Allen crawled out from under his makeshift bomb shelter and dusted himself off. Now he could explore what remained of the house and try to get some answers.


Tune in next week for another exciting installment of Agent Allen!

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