With a heavy voice, full of pain, Calvin answered, “I’m here son, are you alright?” He let out a long slow breath, trying to ease the burning in his ribs.

Fred wanted to hear what they had to say, but at the same time, prisoners were not supposed to communicate. She was afraid of the consequences of this conversation.

“My throat hurts. One of those bastards choked me.”

“I’m sorry, Shane. I think they broke my ribs.” Calvin said, as he tried in vain to find a position to relieve some of the pain in his side.

“Where are we?” Shane asked, as he fumbled with the cuffs on his wrist.

Calvin winced at the effort of moving. “I don’t know. It’s so dark, I can’t see anything.”

Jess moved to her door and put her mouth close to it, “Stop talking,” she said in a loud whisper.

“Who’s that? Where are you, is there someone else in here?” Shane shouted.

“Stop yelling! They’ll come back, stop talking.” Fred whispered urgently.

“Where are we? Who are you?” Shane asked, as he stared into the blackness.

“You’re in the detention center of the DHS camp.”

Calvin raised his face. His eyes were closed tight as he resisted the waves of pain running through his side, “We’re in the camp?”

“Yes, and if the guards catch you talking, they’ll punish you. So be quiet.” Fred said.

“Dad, you think we were set up by that old soldier?” Shane said, barely audible.

“I don’t think so, I don’t think they had anything to do with it. Remember Daniel talking about Morgan? He was with them when the guys from his group were killed by the helicopters, so he surely isn’t part of the Feds.”

When Jess heard Morgan’s name, it was as if someone threw cold water on her. Her heart skipped a beat. It was too much of a coincidence. The old soldier had to be Sarge.

“Hey! You know Morgan Carter? And Sarge?” Jess asked in a voice louder than she intended.

There was a moment of silence, then a reply, “If you’re talking about a crusty ole guy with a hundred ‘n first airborne hat then, yes we met with them today, him and Morgan.” Calvin replied.

As tears started to run down her face, Jess whispered, “That’s them.”

“You know them?” Calvin asked.

“Yes. Sarge and Morgan helped me get home right after the shit hit the fan. I haven’t seen them in a long time, though.” Jess thought for a moment then asked, “Why did you meet with him?”

“You guys need to quit talking before we get in trouble!” Mary called out in a hoarse voice.

Fred looked in the direction of her voice, “Mary, are you okay?”

Mary pressed herself into the corner of her cell, “Yes! Now shush!”

“How many of you are there?” Shane croaked.

“There’s three of us. Is it just the two of you?” Fred asked.

“Yeah. Well, I think so, now. Dad, did you see Daniel?” Shane said.

“I saw him make it to the woods. Omar never got out of the truck. He’s got to be dead.” Calvin said.

“I think they all are.” Shane replied solemnly, then added, “And so will we, soon enough.”

“What’d you guys do?” Jess asked.

Calvin slowly rocked his head back and forth on the wall, “Nothing, we’d just met with Morgan and the old man, Sarge. We pulled out into the paved road and there they were, two DHS Hummers with machineguns. They just started shooting, no warning or anything. pulled out of the woods right in front of them, they just started shooting.”

“What about you guys. Why are you here?” Shane asked.

Jess couldn’t reply. After a moment, Fred answered the question.

“We killed a guard, but he deserved it.”

The answer caught Calvin off-guard, A little smile curled his lips, “Good for you girls, good for you.”

Shane was trying to feel his way around the cell. “Do they ever turn on the lights?”

“No, the only light you’ll see in here is from a damn spotlight they’ll shine in your eyes.” Jess said.

“Damn,” Shane said shaking his head, “how long have you been here?”

“We don’t know, there’s no way to tell time in here. The only way you can tell a difference between night and day is that it gets colder at night,” Fred said.

“We’re doomed,” Shane said as slid down the wall to the floor.