STRATAGEM Chapter 25
LYNDA STORM NEVER THOUGHT THIS DAY WOULD ACTUALLY COME. But with everything Roger had prepared her for, what was happening with Derek must be the kind of situation her late husband had anticipated.
Roger had concealed his life and career as a covert operative from the children and the rest of the civilian and much of the intelligence world. Perhaps had Sabine suspected, but Derek? Well, he had always been trusting with his dad and most likely had no clue.
It had been more difficult for Lynda to conceal her knowledge and training from the kids, though. Maintaining the guise of a highly educated artist who’d given it all up for the domestic life, while secretly learning how to handle firearms, emergency protocols, and contingencies such as her husband’s death (sudden or otherwise) had been harder than anyone (including Roger) could appreciate.
The fuel pump gurgled as she walked toward the Quick Stop’s mini-mart, reminiscent of an old country store. Hopefully, she’d be able to buy some supplies there before going off the grid.
She opened the screen door and it protested with a rusty groan. Fighting the corroded hinges, she pulled it fully opened and glanced back at the car where Derek remained with Paige and Hulk, the entire setting evoking scenes from a late-night horror movie. The flickering fluorescent lights above did little to counteract that impression. Situated in the middle of nowhere on a tiny rural road to the same, it was a wonder this alleged gas station was even open for business.
“Hey!” a gruff voice inside the store said. “Come in or get out. You’re lettin’ the flies out.”