Here's the next part! Tomorrow I'll post the next 'Meet the Characters'!
Daniel turned and strained his eyes. He was sure those bushes had moved! Next to him,
Fremont snapped the cover of his watch shut. It had been thirty-five minutes. “We better get
going. It’s been long enough.”
“Fremont, wait. Here comes someone now,” Daniel said.
“Fremont, wait. Here comes someone now,” Daniel said.
“Why, that’s Matthaus! But why is he alone?”
Luisa opened the door of the car and hurried over to her son, engulfing him in a big hug.
“Matthaus, where are the others?” Kareena asked. Daniel and Fremont’s questioning eyes
repeated her question.
“They’re okay, but we had to take the long way around. We were being followed and it took a
while to lose them. You need to take the car to the small clearing outside of Pfunds. I’ll meet you
there with Helena and Max.”
“But Matthaus, that’s another hour for you to walk!” Daniel exclaimed.
“I know that, but it’ll be better than being here. The Majors are on horseback. They’ll be here
any minute. Dad, you understand. Tell them this is best.”
Fremont nodded, “He’s right. I’m assuming that they sent back to Innsbruck for the dogs, but it
will take them longer than a hour to get back. By the time they’re here we should be over the
Daniel nodded, “Alright. How’s Helena?”
“She’s doing okay, she can’t really walk; it’s been faster when I carry her, but I can tell she
doesn't enjoy it.”
“Matthaus, can I go back with you?” Kareena asked. “Let me explain,” she added as he started
to shake his head. “I know this area as well as you do, and I can help with Helena. Having
another girl around might make her feel better.”
“Hey, don’t go too far, sis. Max is her cousin; that should make her feel comfortable enough.”
“I think that’d be good for Helena. She hasn’t seen another girl her age since they got taken
three weeks ago.” Daniel added.
Matthaus slowly nodded. “Alright. But you’d better not slow us down!”
Kareena’s laugh sounded across the silent woods. “I’ve been out in these woods since I was old
enough to walk. I may be a year younger than you, but you know better than anyone I’m never
“Oh alright, alright. Let’s just get started.” Matthaus said, giving her a grin.
“We’ll meet you in Pfunds.” Fremont said, shaking his finger playfully at his son.
“Yes.” Luisa added in a whisper. “Lord willing.”
Max and Helena sat in the woods. The crickets were chirping and the moon was shining brightly,
giving everything an enchanted look. Suddenly there was the sound of horses moving through
the woods. Helena gave Max a frightened look.
Max put a finger to his lips and looked around for a hiding place. A little ways off, there was a
thick patch of bushes. Standing, Max put an arm around Helena and helped her over to the
Setting her carefully down, he brushed aside the bushes enough to make a small opening. The
hoofbeats had grown louder and Helena gave him a terrified look. If Major Ubel found them, they
both knew it would be over.
Max hurried into the bushes, then slowly pulled Helena in, making sure her leg stayed straight.
She winced as it hit a rock and Max put a hand over her mouth, “I know it hurts, but you’ve got to
stay quiet,” he hissed.
Helena nodded and gritted her teeth, but not before Max felt a tear splash onto his hand. Her leg
was hurting more than she’d ever dared to say.
She leaned against him as the hoofbeats slowly entered the clearing, then paused just beside the bush.
“They were here.” It was Major Ubel’s voice.
“But how do you know?” I Major Ramond asked.
“Look,” he pointed to where the grass lay down at the side of the trail. “They were here not to
“Vhen the dogs get here, ve vill find them in no time.”
“Yes, but until then we will keep looking.”
The hoofbeats disappeared as they continued down the path.
Helena sighed. At least they were gone. Then a horrid thought struck her.
“Max, what if Matthaus come back and they see him?” She whispered.
Max looked at her. “You’re right. He must be warned. Slowly and cautiously he inched his way
around her and stood up.“I’ll go and try to warn them. You stay here.”
“But, Max. You don’t know this area at all. You could get lost or run into the Majors and we’d
never know what happened to you!”
Max paused and looked back at her. “You may be right, but think about all Matthaus and his
father have done for us. We can’t just leave them knowing they could be walking into a trap.”
Helena considered it. “Okay, but stay close to the path so you don’t get lost.
Max grinned. “You know, usually it’s me who’s warning you to stay away from danger.”
Helena managed a small smile. “So now we’re on the opposite sides. But please, do promise me
you’ll be careful.”
Max nodded. “I promise. I’ll stay close to the path and I’ll do my best to stay quiet.”
“And one more thing.”
“What is it?”
“Please, be back soon. I’m not to keen on the idea of being left here alone for long.”
Max winked at her. “I promise, I’ll be back as soon as I can.”
“I’ll be praying.”
“Me to.” He replied, and then he was gone.
Kareena followed Matthaus as they silently moved through the forest.
“Are we almost there?”
“Are we almost there?”
Matthaus nodded and was about to speak when they suddenly heard the sounds of hoofbeats in
Matthaus grabbed his sister's hand and pulled her off the narrow path. Crouching behind a large
tree, he motioned for her to do the same.
Two horses cantered past. Matthaus glanced around the tree trunk, catching a glimpse of their faces as they rode past.
So, we didn’t lose them after all,he thought. This will complicate things.
He waited until he was sure they were gone before leaving his hiding place; Kareena followed
“Who were those men?”
“Those men were the Majors.” he said with a grim look on his face.
“Does that mean--”
“Yes, we’ll have to take the longer way around.”
“But that takes at least half an hour more.”
“I know, but it can’t be helped.”
“Then we better hurry.”
She started walking ahead of her brother. As she sharply turned a corner in the trail, she glanced back at Matthaus. “You'd better hurr--” she didn’t finish the sentence because at that moment, she felt herself run into someone or something, before they both tumbled to the ground.
“I’m sorry, are you okay?” Max stood up and offered her his hand.
“I’m alright. Who are you?” She asked, taking his offered hand and brushing herself off.
“My name is Max.”
“Max, are you alright? What are you doing? Where’s Helena?” Matthaus hurried over.
“Helena is back where you left us. The Majors came by and I wanted to warn you.”
“We've already seen them.”
“Then we’ve got to hurry. Soon enough they’ll figure out they've passed us somewhere and come back.”
Matthaus nodded. “We were just talking about it.” He motioned to Kareena, “This is my sister,
Max nodded, “It’s nice to meet you.”
“How’s Helena?” Matthaus asked.
Max hesitated. “She’ll tell you she’s alright, but she’s not doing well.”
“Do you think she can make it another five miles?”
“Five miles!” Max exclaimed
Kareena nodded. “Matthaus sent them to Pfunds. It’s a small town close to the border. The shorter route cuts through the woods and only takes 3½ miles, but we can’t take the risk with both of the Majors out. The other trail goes around the woods instead of cutting straight through, but we can’t take the chance.”
“We'll have to,” Max stated, his determination evident in his eyes.
“We can’t.” Matthaus stated just as strongly.
“Look, I’m telling you Helena won’t make it. She needs a doctor as soon as possible; she won’t
make it another five miles.”
“You said yourself that she said she was fine,” Matthaus argued. “We can’t take the chance!”
“She’ll say she’s fine even when she’s in so much pain she can barely stand it! That’s just how
she is. But I know her. I’ve grown up with her and I’m telling you she won’t make it another five
miles! I’m not even sure if she’ll make it the four.”
Matthaus sighed. “What do you think, sis?”
“We’ll take the shorter trail, we’ll just have to be cautious.”
Matthaus nodded. “Alright, let’s go and get Helena.”
Helena quickly looked up, her eyes darting the forest. I’m sure I heard a sound! She thought.
“You doin’ okay, Helena?” Max asked, as he bent down beneath the bushes.
“Oh, Max, you startled me! I’m alright. Were you able to get to Matthaus?”
“Yep, but the Majors had already gone past; they hid though, but we’ve got to hurry before they
double back.” He answered, as he helped Helena out of the bushes.
“They?” She asked, taking his arm and standing up on her good leg.
“Yes, Matthaus brought Kareena, his sister.”
Kareena hurried to Helena’s other side and helped her out onto the trail. “Hi, my name’s
Kareena, but Max already mentioned that! I’m so glad to be able to finally meet you! I’ve heard so
much about you.”
Helena smiled. “It’s nice to meet you too, although I wish it was under better circumstances.”
“Well, hopefully in another couple hours you and Max will be safe on the other side of the border
and you can have a doctor look at your leg.”
Helena nodded, “It was starting to get better, I could even put a little weight on it, but then--well--”
“Oh, never mind about your leg. It’ll be good as new in no time at all!”
“Do you want to try to walk, Helena?” Matthaus asked. As soon as the words were out of his
mouth, Max started shaking his head. Helena, on the other hand, was a different matter.
“I--I think I could walk a little.”
“No, you’d better just let Matthaus carry you,” Max interjected.
“But, Max, I think--”
“No, if you try to walk you’ll only injure your leg worse.”
Helena sighed, “All right.”
As they started off, Kareena and Helena kept up a quiet but constant chatter.
Max was thankful that Kareena had come; her constant chatter kept Helena’s mind off her leg
and it also gave her someone to talk to.
“You two can talk, but keep it quiet.” Matthaus reminded them as he led them through the brush
until they came to another small trail, barely visible to Max’s eyes. But that didn‘t seem to bother
Matthaus or Kareena. Their steps were quick and sure and Max had the feeling that they had
been here many times before.
Just like Helena and I knew all the trails back home. Well, where home used to be, he thought
Daniel opened the door, stepped out of the car, and walked around, taking deep breaths of the
fresh country air. Fremont joined him, leaving a sleeping Luisa in the car.
“They should be here within the hour.” He said as he leaned back against the back of the car.
“An hour. . .that’ll be pretty nerve-wracking.” Daniel sighed.
Fremont nodded, “I know.”
Back at the Nazis outpost in Serfaus, Corporal Peter sat at the front desk, trying to make sense
of all the paperwork in front of him. “It’s bad enough that I was relocate here, now the Majors
expect me to figure out all this paperwork,” he muttered. At that moment the door opened, and he
glanced up before jumping to his feet; standing at attention.
“Yes, sir, can I help you Colonel?” He asked, saluting.
“Corporal, I’m here for two children. Max and Helena. They're to be released into my custody.”
he said flashing his papers. “I’m assuming this won’t be to hard?”
“Well, sir, under normal circumstances, no, but you see, they’re not here.”
“Not here! What do you mean? I want those children!” He roared.
“Sir, it seems they escaped. They’re out looking for them.”
The Colonel reached across the desk and grabbed Peter by his shirt. “Well, you let them know
I’ll be back. And they’d better be here!” With that he threw him back into the chair and stormed
out of the office.
“Did you get them?”
“No, they’re not there. They’ve escaped, probably heading toward the border.”
“They couldn’t have gotten far. The girl’s leg is supposedly broken.”
“I know. As soon as I get rid of this horrid uniform, we’ll start looking for them.”
“Keep the uniform, you might need it. We might run into some ‘friends’ in the woods.”
The other man nodded. “Alright, but when I get those kids, Wilhelm will be sorry he ever heard of
“Are you sure it’s the Autenburg’s boy they got? It just doesn’t seem right. Wilhelm being in the
Wehrmacht and all.”
“It’s him, I’m sure. And that cousin of his.”
“Well then let’s go.”