> Seth Underwood Stories: USRM-ISB Installment 0.2- The Drive to Anaheim (Est. Read Time 2 min.)

USRM-ISB Installment 0.2- The Drive to Anaheim (Est. Read Time 2 min.)

The Drive to Anaheim

“Tell me again why we are doing this?” the young Agent Tolfree asked her partner Agent Daugherty.

“I believe something connects this murder in Anaheim to our rape case.”

“How?” Tolfree said with a puzzled look on her face.

“When we get there, I’ll know.”

“So, it’s one of your gut things again?” Tolfree said crossing her arms and sitting back in to passenger seat.

“Yeah. It’s one my gut things.” Daugherty said.

Leaning forward Tolfree asked “Hey car. How many more minutes until we get to our destination?”
The driverless car responded, “At least four more hours at my current speed.”

Rosella Tolfree leaned backed again in her seat and turned her head to look out the window.

She could see in the distance the Great Bay of Sacramento leaving her view as the brown dry scrub land of California sped past them. Heat waves coming from the baked land wiggled the image. The Great Bay reminded her of childhood home in San Francisco.

San Francisco after the flooding had become an island between the bay and ocean. They had rebuilt all of San Francisco way before she was born so now the island is composed of low level apartment buildings. Anyone of wealth moved into the interior of the U.S. to avoid the coastal flooding.

Rosella recalled the virtual school trips as a child to the flooded cities of Los Angeles and San Diego where these tall skyscrapers could still be seen poking out of the waters. Now these abandoned buildings had become the roosting place of thousands of My Pet Dragons which would fly out from them to hunt the surrounding waters for fish or the nearby hills for game.

As self-driving trucks raced by them, she then recalled a college class on historical vids where this old science fiction vid showed a dark sprawling landscape of tall buildings everywhere for Los Angeles. She couldn’t help herself from not letting out a little laugh as she recalled the image.

“What’s so funny?” Daugherty asked.

“Oh, nothing. Just thinking how people once thought the future of America would be this sprawling towers of buildings everywhere.”

“Oh, that old myth. My grandfather told me about those ideas. I don’t think his generation expected the Great Melt happening so fast.”

“Where you around when the Great Melt happened?” Tolfree asked.

“No. It all happened way before me. My grandparents grew up with it as children. They said it happened so fast. My grandfather Jacob would always talk about how Sacramento got flooded one day when the levees failed killing all these people.”

“People must have thought the world was ending.” Tolfree said.

“Some did. But most tried just hang on to whatever they had. Moving more inland if they could afford it. Being evacuated from coastal areas. Storms that would bring in more water that wouldn’t drain away. The constant fear of disease from the water. It was hard times from what I gather.”

“I can’t imagine living like that. I never had any relatives to talk about how they lived day to day back then. It was just me and my dad.” Tolfree said.

Daugherty became silent.

“What’s up? Something bothering you?” Tolfree asked as she turned noticing Daugherty’s face.

Daugherty shook his head saying, “No. Nothing. Hey car. How much more time do we have until we get to Anaheim?”

The car responded, “At least three hours and thirty minutes at my current speed.”

Rosella turned to face forward again and leaned back into the seat. She never could understand why Daugherty got that odd look on his face any time she mentioned her father. Rosella knew that Daugherty knew about the murder of her father, and that she wanted to figure out who was the murderer. Crossing her arms, Rosella recalled a heated agreement between the two of them when she tried to use ISB resources to figure out her father’s murder. Daugherty just telling her, “Not to go there.” Daugherty was holding back something from her, but hell if he would tell her. It didn’t matter, she would figure it out on her own with or without his help.

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