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Swept Away Part One, PG
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Posted: 11 April 2010 - 02:04 PM                                    
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Phoenix Field Agent

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Okay, I promise this is the last time I start a new story and then abandon it like a poor, lost orphan child. I swear. This one I'm actually going to finish. It's just...most of what I've written since my emotional "breakdown" last year hasn't spoken to me. This story does. Read on to find out what happens! smile.gif

Oh, and by the way, just a note--I borrowed a character and a setting from one of my previous stories called No Trespassing. You don't have to read that story to understand the plot of this one, but it wouldn't hurt. wink.gif

Swept Away Part One
Rated: PG

“What did I tell you, MacGyver? Was this…worth the effort, or what?” MacGyver’s friend Chuck Hayes said, panting. He bent over to catch his breath, wiping the sweat from his forehead and from his eyeglasses, taking a hearty, satisfying swig from his canteen.

MacGyver remained speechless, stunned to silence by the breathtaking mountain scenery that surrounded them, taking it all in. Never before had he felt so small and insignificant, dwarfed by the empty vastness of the prairie grassland and the immensity of the rugged, majestic peaks that towered over them in the distance. A river ran steadily through the land, more pristine and clear than any he had ever seen before. All at once he felt isolated from yet connected to everything on a level that he had never experienced before, its profound effect on him almost spiritual and mystical.

Chuck looked up and noticed MacGyver gaping in awe and amazement at the wonder and beauty around them and grinned. “I’ll take that as a yes,” he said.

“It’s absolutely beautiful,” MacGyver said, still staring out into the acres of raw wilderness that stretched out before them. “I’ve never seen anything like it, and I’ve hiked all over the world. It’s so untouched…unspoiled…like we are the only human beings privileged enough to be here. It’s like…sacred ground, almost like heaven.”

“Yeah, and thanks to my efforts at promoting land conservation, it will stay this way. No greedy land developers from out of state will ever be allowed to touch this place.”

“I’m proud of you, Chuck.”

Chuck squinted and brushed away a nagging insect that was clinging to his face. “Well, it was a hard legal fight, that’s for sure, but finally I got the system to work in my favor for a change,” he said.

MacGyver crouched beside the river and uncapped his canteen, prepared to refill it with the mountain river water that looked pure, but years of survival experience out in the wild had taught him that appearances could be deceiving. Any host of bacteria or other contaminants could be polluting what otherwise appeared clean and safe to drink. Before he filled it, he looked up questioningly at Chuck.

“Go ahead,” Chuck said. “It’s safe. You’ll live. In fact, this river supplies the water for the town.”

“Does it?” MacGyver asked, feeling reassured, filling his canteen with the mountain water and drinking some of it. It was clean, cold, and refreshing, perhaps the best water he had ever drunk. It tasted so good that he couldn’t resist greedily gulping it down, filling the canteen again before capping it and standing, feeling energized and revived, as if he could feel the living, vital essence of the water flowing through his veins, cleansing and purifying him.

“Sure does,” Chuck said. He pointed downstream. You see, it runs from here into several other main tributaries down into the canyon where the town is located. It’s been a natural source of water for centuries, and with my help, it will remain that way, not dammed up or controlled by outside interests who want to use it to divert the water supply to the city.”

MacGyver appreciated and agreed with most of Chuck’s beliefs about the environment, but something about the river and the way his friend had described it troubled him. He looked at the water again, watching the gentle rapids stir, froth, and bubble, creating small ripples and waves, it’s crystalline, glassy surface clearly revealing the sandy, rocky bottom, an occasional dark silhouette of a fish swimming through its passages. It seemed innocent, with nothing to hide, no deception. It was drinkable, one could stand on its banks and easily catch fish, campers could sleep blissfully near its shores and be lulled peacefully to sleep by the calming sound of its running waters, and even children could wade or tube down it. Yet something bothered him about it, something sinister, something that had yet to be revealed by the volatile, constantly changing attitudes of nature.

“Mac, what is it?” Chuck asked, noticing his pensive, concerned expression.

“You say that this river is part of a larger system that runs into the canyon?”

“That’s right, right into the center of town. It’s one of our main tourist attractions. Campers and other vacationers from all over come here to be near it. Heck, it’s one of the reasons I was inspired to live here. Why? What’s wrong?”

MacGyver rubbed his chin, still lost in deep thought. “If what you’re saying is true, then it could someday be the recipe for a devastating flash flood,” he said. “You’re talking about a lot of water. Add an intense rainstorm, and it could overflow, wiping out the town and causing massive erosion to the landscape.”

Chuck looked at him, dumbfounded. “Jeez Mac, do you always have to put such a damper on everything?” He asked. “I mean man, talk about a real downer to an otherwise beautiful and enjoyable day.”

MacGyver turned and looked at Chuck. “I’m just being realistic,” he said. “There is potential for a major natural disaster here someday.”

“Yeah well, for today, could we not dwell in realism, huh? It’s depressing. Let’s just ease up a bit and enjoy the day instead of making dire, alarmist predictions about the future. After all, that’s my specialty.” He smiled.

MacGyver smiled slightly as well. “I’m sorry,” he said. “I didn’t mean to worry you. Catastrophic floods like that rarely happen, anyway, and when they do, it’s usually in hundred to five hundred year cycles.”

Chuck was beginning to worry, despite MacGyver’s reassuring words and confidence that something like he described would never happen to the town of Pine Grove, a town he had dreamed about living in since college, a town he loved and protected from encroaching outside forces and competing corporate entities as if it were his offspring. He had worked hard to ensure that it maintained its charm, its local character, and the idea that in mere seconds he could lose it all deeply distressed him.

“So…you’re sure it won’t happen, right? At least not for a century?” He asked.

MacGyver detected the fear in his voice. “Look, let’s just forget it, all right? I’m sorry I ever brought it up. I didn’t mean to upset you. Let’s just enjoy the day and the scenery, all right?” He said.

He wished there was more he could do to comfort his friend, who took every warning seriously, almost to the point of fervent religious zeal and obsession. Still, he knew the unsettling reality, and there was nothing either of them could do, not even their most passionate, ardent days of protest and activism in their youth, to prepare them for the inevitable, for forces beyond their control.

“Come to think of it, in the history of this valley, I think there was a flood like you described. It happened, I think, about a hundred years ago. We could research it at the library. We could prepare people. We could warn them. We could—

“Now Chuck, settle down,” MacGyver said. “I never said it was going to happen now. There’s really no way to know when something like that will happen again.”

A brisk wind picked up, whipping around them, disturbing the quiet and stillness and creating an atmosphere of unease and foreboding. They had been so absorbed in their conversation that neither of them had noticed the dark, ominous clouds billowing overhead, thunder rumbling violently, threatening them with the promise of rain.

“It’s happening now,” Chuck said, staring at the clouds.

To be continued…

"If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer."

--Henry David Thoreau


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Posted: 12 April 2010 - 05:39 AM                                    
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Trouble shooter

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happy_dance.gif A new story from MacsChick again!
Looks like a storm is coming.

I'm glad to see another story from you, MacsChick.
A great beginning. biggrin.gif Can't wait for more chapters to come.

who absolutely adores MacGyver:) and loves Richard Dean Anderson;)
"You don't go to people with your problems, you come to your friends!" A MacGyver quote (Twice Stung)

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Posted: 20 May 2010 - 07:35 AM                                    
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DXS Agent

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Ooo! Very compelling! blink.gif Now I've got to find out what happens. Great start! biggrin.gif

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Posted: 20 May 2010 - 11:49 AM                                    
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Special Forces Agent

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More please

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Posted: 23 June 2010 - 01:19 PM                                    
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DXS Operative

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Yay, MacsChick!!!
Glad you are writing again. What a scareymarevelous begining! Another looming disaster! **Poor Mac!**

I've missed you and everyone here.

**Growing OLD is mandatory. Growing UP is optional.**

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Posted: 24 March 2021 - 04:53 PM                                    
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Challengers Volunteer

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Season: ---
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Is this story ever going to be continued? I sure hope so!

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