We did the usual predawn stand up with everyone awake. Carol wasn't meeting my eyes I noticed. "Fine" I thought. "I don't really need the distraction right now." I got Loco aside and told him the new plan. "You're going to be leading the ladies back to the Horde. They're about 32 miles east of us and headed our way. You will probably meet them in less than 10 miles. Max will tell you what's up after that."
He raised an eyebrow and said "What about you?"
"I'm going with you until we are about 5 miles out from them. Then I'm splitting off on a secret mission."
He grinned "Going to look for Carol's kid huh?"
I should have known. Nothing stays secret. "Yeah. Until then we're going to loop around the town and stay off the roads. I am going to get a view hopefully in the next few minutes of what is between us. I want to avoid trouble. If we have to sit down and shut up for awhile -- that's what we'll do. I'll take point. I want you on drag. Put who ever you think has a clue behind me. We go in ten minutes."
I was headed away. I wanted to take a leak and hook up with the goddess cam away from everyone when Loco said "Hey G."
"Two might be better than one..."
I was surprised, maybe even touched. I walked back to him, put out my hand so I could shake his, and said "Thanks. If I was going to take anyone -- it would be you." We did the embrace back patting thing and I went to go find my spot. I finished, zipped up, and put in the call. She was there within a second.
"Hey Gardener. Guess what?"
She said excitedly "We found some chocolate!"
"Yeah! And I ate almost all of it!" Then she laughed delightedly.
"Thanks for sharing that with me." I replied, I thought dryly.
"No problem." she replied. She laughed again then said "You want a bird?"
"Yeah. From where I am back to you in sweeps. Y'all made a contact lately?"
"Nothing major. A few images of a fire blackened truck followed by "Someone tried to push past the point." She didn't add anything else. "Okay. I'm going to have to use a couple birds. I'll send you your area now and see what I can do as you move." Then she was gone.