Zach could smell a whiff of metallic rust beneath the smell of damp and fishy odor inside where he was chained in shackles. He could also hear a loud clang of metals and the sound of splashing waves. He knew he was confined inside a container that seemed to have already been loaded into a ship which had already set sail towards the open sea.
Leon was definitely a cunning and sly man who always had a well devised plan B, ready to put into action anytime to help him escape.
After Jeru left to bring Thea to safety, Zach was left fighting Draco on his own. At that time, several more of Leon's men had emerged from the lower decks of the Ghost Ship and managed to grasp him from behind. A gun was pointed at him but Leon, who miraculously had gotten up to his feet again after Zach's last blow, decided not to kill him, saying that Zach would still be useful to him as a bargaining chip with the authorities if necessary.
Leon had managed to escape with a few of his men through a secret passage that would bring them to a detachable turbo submarine that was well hidden beneath the hull of the Ghost ship.
Zach had been fighting so much that his body had started to feel the effects. His vision had started to blur and he sighed upon the realization that the contact lenses which also served as a tracking device had torn. Probably from one of the blows he had received during the fights. He removed them as they had malfunctioned and they were only hurting his eyes even more.
He cursed as the absolute absence of light had weakened his senses. He couldn't see anything except for the darkest shade of greys. It had been days since Leon had caged him inside that dark container. He didn't know the exact duration anymore as he had begun to lose his sense of time. He wondered where that bastard was headed.
But he was at least thankful that Leon had decided to keep him alive.
"Keira, I'm sorry..." Zach murmured as he slumped onto the ground helplessly. He was not able to keep his promise to her. He was feeling extremely distressed as he knew that he had most likely been declared missing in action and presumed dead. And he just couldn't bear the thought of Keira crying at that news.
This was not the first time he had been held captive by enemies but he had always been able to remain calm and disengage himself from any sorts of emotions. This didn't mean that he had never cared about his own life. No, he had always valued his life and he would always fight to stay alive. But even though he would always do his utter best to survive, because of his love for his family, he was a soldier and he had always known the risk of being a soldier. The odds of being killed in a mission were high and he was always prepared for that.
But this time was different. This time he had left behind a treasure so precious which he really couldn't bear leaving; it's his dearest darling wife, his own heart and soul. This time he was not prepared to die. So he needed to stay strong and think of a way to escape. Because he must return to her soon…
He heard some inaudible voices from outside the container, and not long after, the container door was opened. Zach had to shut his eyes tightly as the sudden light from outside was blinding him.
"You! Mister General Slave! Come here and welcome the sunlight!" Draco grinned hideously as he unlocked the chain that was tied up at the side wall of the container and connected to Zach's shackles. He hauled the chain and dragged Zach along with it, like a slave. Zach stumbled forward as his hands and feet were chained up in shackles.
As soon as they were outside, Zach scanned the whole area and his eyes widened at the sight of a familiar ship approaching from afar. The ship looked a lot like the Ghost Ship, but much bigger.
"See that? That's the upgraded version of my Ghost Ship and it had just been completed recently. Tsk tsk tsk… You asholes really think you could capture me? They don't call me the King for nothing, fools!" Leon growled at Zach as he proudly flaunted his new ship.
"You are one lucky guy, Zach… I'm keeping you alive because I know Thea would come to me on her own once she knows that I have you here with me. But don't get me wrong, I will kill you as soon as I get her back!" Leon snarled.
He is currently a hunted fugitive, the highest in the most wanted list, and they wanted him dead or alive. So he needed to lay low for an indefinite amount of time in order to avoid the authorities to get hot on his trail.
He glared at Zach and gritted his teeth as fury engulfed him. He took a few steps forward towards Zach and punched him in the face.
"You fu*cker! It's all your fault! I will definitely make you suffer before I kill you! Motherfu*cking asshole!" Leon shouted and cursed uncontrollably. He would definitely make Zach's life so miserable that he would be wishing for those bullets soon, as death was going to be his only escape.
At Lim's Villa…
Sheila and grandma Terri were crying as they continuously held their hands together in prayer to ask God for Zach's safety and protection. Just like Keira, they could also sense that Zach was still alive somewhere.
Josh who was just on the telephone with the Field Marshal for news on Zach walked gloomily towards them. "What did they say?" Sheila stood up and asked helplessly.
Josh exhaled loudly and shook his head as he said, "Uncle said there's still nothing, Mother..."
Sheila burst out crying and almost fell down on her knees if not for Josh who was quick to hold her. "Josh… Your brother… What should we do? What should we do… Oh God, please bring back my son…" Josh held his mother in his embrace while she was sobbing helplessly.
"Mother, please be strong… big Bro will definitely come back to us… Please stop crying," he murmured as he was choking back his own tears. He gently patted his mother's back to comfort her.
Grandma Terri watched the whole scene with reddened eyes and soon watery streaks fell down her wrinkled face...
"Grandma, do you think big Bro will still come back? Do you think he's still alive?" murmured Rizie who was also on the verge of tears.
"Yes, he is alive, my child. Zach is definitely alive… Keira will do anything to find him. Trust your sister-in-law, she will definitely bring him back. She will bring Zach back to us…" Grandma Terri looked at Rizie reassuringly.
They all knew that Keira had been training hard at the Military Base to personally join the special team whose primary assignment was to locate and rescue Zach. Although they strongly disliked the idea of Keira going on the high-risk assignment, but Lyra had told them that Keira was hell-bent on going and there was no way they would be able to stop her.
Lyra had also given them an account of Thea's tragic story and involvement with the underworld. They all agreed that both Zach and Thea had suffered enough and each one of them deserved their own happy ending…
This incident was just another trial for her grandson…
And her grandson was born a fighter, so fight he should. And he was born a warrior, so win he could. For he was also born a survivor, so survive he would...
"Return to us soon, Zach," she whispered as she felt Rizie was hugging her tightly.