Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Remnant: Yaw have a good trip, ya hear?


Santos Etxeberria maneuvered the bow of his 28’ foot Baja Sportfisher away from dinghy he had just anchored in 10’ of water on the west side of the San Francisco Bay

He motored a half mile to the east, lowered his own anchor and started jigging for halibut. The sun had already set behind the hills to the west. The fish would be biting.

Santos did not have any clients with him. Certainly with the shortage of food he could have had a boat full. He did not want the complications passengers brought. In fact, he did not even have a jig on the end of his line, just a simple egg-shaped sinker.

Santos was a patient man. He was waiting.

Fifty years ago Santos had been a patriotic Basque. He had a few close calls and his face was seen. Fortunately, he was able to fly to America and disappear for five years as a shepherd in Wyoming. Then he moved to California and got a job in an aerospace company. He married and they had one daughter.

Twenty years ago his wife died of pancreatic cancer. Santos bought the fishing boat and found his solace on the Bay.

Five years ago his daughter’s home was invaded by illegal aliens. She and Santos’s grandchildren were slaughtered so-as to leave no witnesses.

The men plea-bargained down to Breaking-and-Entering and received suspended sentences. Of course they immediately disappeared.

Representative Lucy Borgia, HIS US Representative continued to lobby for more immigration and lighter sentences.

Every weekend she flew from Washington D.C. to San Francisco to fund-raise and make deals. More crassly, that meant auctioning-off tax-loopholes, cost-plus contracts and the other perks of having access to the wheels of government to the highest bidders. Late Sunday night she flew back to Washington in a luxury jet at tax-payer expense. With her flew lobbiests, family and titans of industry. The very people who benefited from open borders.

Santos double-checked the tarp that covered the rack that nearly always carried extra fishing rods. One side of the tarp was attached to cleats on the gunwale. The other side had weights attached to the grommets. When the time came he would be able to fling the weights over the gunnel and the weights would pull the rest of the tarp out of the way.

All he had to do was wait.

Santos was surprised when he got a call from an old, Basque acquaintance. They met at a coffee shop and ordered three coffee, to-go. A third person joined them on their walk. The third person knew everything about Santos, even his activities in the Basque separatist movement.

The third person made certain….opportunities….available to Santos.

Santos did not have a radio playing. The sound of the departing jets was deafening as they seemed to fly directly over his head. He neither knew nor cared about the riots that had blown up in cities all across America.

The governor of Michigan was ripped out her mansion and her entire family stoned in the street with cobbles from the imploded church. She had been scheduled to speak but was not in the church. She knew that it would run at least an hour late. Her not being in the church when she was scheduled to be there was enough proof for the frenzied mob.

Governors in other states were whisked out of their residents in National Guard helicopters for their safety as enraged mobs surged toward their homes.

Cities and suburbs burned.

Santos had an ear-bud in his ear. He heard the double-click indicating that the next plane to leave the runway was his target.

Just as the plane left the runway and was over water, Santos triggered the massive flare in the dinghy. The composition of the flare mimicked the thermal profile of a surface-to-air missile's rocket motor.

The military pilot of Representative Lucy Borgia’s plane reacted as anticipated. He turned toward the “missile launch” to minimize the thermal profile the plane offered the (presumably) infrared seeking head while the copilot punched the button to launch flares.

That turned the tail of the plane, and more importantly the hot, exhaust-ends of the engines toward Santos who had a genuine, Made in China, State-of-the-art, man-launched anti-aircraft missile. The optics and CPU were able to discard the flares as targets because it was searching for a very specific ratio of two, infrared wavelengths.

The plane, banking to the right, was losing altitude when Santos’s first missile detonated scant feet from the right engine, destroying it and shredding the control surfaces of the tail.

Santos already had the second missile up and seeking as the plane started to yaw. The second missile hit just milliseconds before the right wingtip plunged into the water and the plane disintegrated as it cartwheeled at 250 miles per hour.

Five seconds later, Santos inserted the muzzle of his handgun in his mouth and pulled the trigger.


  1. This is begging to be made into an action movie, ripe for CGI. From a short time on the sea a while ago, I believe it is gunwale, not gunnel. Carry on! Can't wait for more.

    1. Thank-you for the correction. Changes made.

    2. In my home Town of Liverpool, the commonly used contraction was gunnel. Just like Bosun is a contraction of Boatswain - Lover of the boat.
      Gotta keep the old words alive both long and short versions.

  2. People who have nothing to lose are the most dangerous of all.

  3. If you can't bring your family back, then go to join them.

  4. Lucy Borgia aka the corrupt and self-serving Nancy Piglosi? If ever anyone deserved to spend her last moments doing a rope dance it would be her. But a MANPAD up the tailpipe works too, I suppose.

    I realize escape for Silvio would have been seriously problematic, but I feel his handlers should have given it a try, with him offing himself being the last resort if he could not get away. There could have been lots of additional important 'work' for a man like him. Great story, though. I look forward to every installment.

    1. Pelosi? Well, maybe.

      The beauty of fiction is that you turn it around in your head until it makes sense.

      If that person is somebody I had not worries. Every person reads fiction and makes it their own.

      Any details that align with persons currently living or dead are purely coincidental.

  5. To hell with piglosi. An easy death from a rocket is too good for her. She needs to be in the stocks for a few days receiving rotten fruit to the head, and horny donkeys from behind.

  6. Yeah, "my" heroes tend to commit all the way and try to get away with more attacks vs giving up or giving in...

    Take 5 with you is a noble sentiment.

  7. This "chapter" kept bouncing like a pinball in my brain. While it's true that a deeper story line could've been written for this character, just like sometimes you need a disposable email address, sometimes an author needs a disposable character. What jumped out at me was the deeper implications of the manpad. Even if I had won a enormous lottery, I'm pretty sure I couldn't lay my hands on one of those. That leaves two (maybe) different groups that would have that capability. Organized crime(cartels etc.) or nation states or their client states. So, Russia, China or the US. In any event,whoever supplied the weapon had to see some upside to downing the jet. And just as important is who the actual target was. Lucretia( loved the name) or one of the cronies on the plane with her. But it's a "gimmie" that what got the plane will come out and China will get the blame.

  8. I see plans within plans.

  9. Well, I didn't see that coming!


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