Instantly, both parents recognized the sound. Kat dashed to the wall to put out the lights in their room, while Sergio creeped over to the window and looked through the curtains. In the dark he was able to make out several dark shapes moving across the navy-blue sky. Despite the dim light, he could make out their silhouette. He looked over at Kat, and nodded. It confirmed their suspicions. Those were Invergence drones.
A few moments later and the drones had moved on. Probably just on some sort of patrol.
“What do we do?” Kat asked.
“We leave tomorrow,” said Sergio. “The drones have an equal chance of catching us in daylight or at night, so it won’t make a difference when we leave. We’ll make one brief stop at the church and then get out of Las Vegas.”
Kat nodded in agreement, though she probably wanted to skip the church altogether. Despite her allowing Alice to be baptized, Sergio could tell that she still didn’t like the idea. And going out of their way to baptize her when there were drones about probably didn’t help things.
But she said nothing as they both slipped in bed. They were tired so they fell asleep easily, even despite their worries about Invergence. Both were used to sleeping under stress by now, and it wasn’t long before all three of them were fast asleep.
They arose at eight o’clock the next morning. Sergio grabbed all their things while Kat retrieved Alice from the small crib they had purchased. Silently, they moved everything out to the car. Sergio took one last moment to check themselves out of the hotel. While he was there, he asked about any Catholic churches nearby. The young man at the desk didn’t know anything, but allowed Sergio to use the computer to look it up. Soon, they were driving again. Thankfully, they had passed up the worse of rush-hour traffic, so they only had to wait fifteen minutes or so before they arrived at the church.
It was a flat building, with few adorning features. It didn’t look at all the way many other churches looked, tall with a lot of ornamentation. But this was the place, so they parked and got out. This time Sergio held Alice as they walked through the doors. It looked like the place had just opened.
Once inside, they both stood around waiting for someone to say hello. When no one came, they walked into the chapel. That was the first time they saw anyone. Apparently not too many people came here on a Friday morning.
In the chapel, a well-dressed man came to greet them.
“Welcome,” he said, “to our humble place of worship. My name is Father Chesterton. Is there anything I can help you with?”
Sergio could visibly see Kat trying not to roll her eyes. He tried to ignore that. “Um…yeah, we’re just passing through town, but we really wanted to make sure our baby girl was baptized before she gets any older.”
The man looked at Alice, then back at her parents. He seemed to be considering something in his mind. “You’re a long way from home?” he asked.
“Yes, and we won’t return for some time,” said Sergio.
“Well, it’s most irregular for us to just perform a baptism without some prior warning. Do you have godparents selected?”
“No, but you don’t have to have those, right?”
“No, no, you certainly don’t. Hmm. Give me a moment while I discuss this with one of my colleagues.”
“So you can do it?” Kat cut in.
“Well, yes, we don’t want your daughter’s soul endangered any longer. But there are a few things we should check on first. Procedural matters, you understand.”
Kat frowned in impatience. Sergio felt the same. He wanted Alice baptized, but even he admitted that they were in a terrible rush.
“I’ll be back soon, I promise,” the man said, and hurried off.
Kat sighed and sat down on a nearby bench. Sergio joined her, letting Alice sit between them. The girl waved her arms around with excitement at the new environment to sit in. If only Sergio could find such simple pleasures.
While Alice played around on the bench, Kat and Sergio were keeping their ears peeled for any hint of the drones they had heard the night before. That was why both instantly sprung to their feet at the same time. They distinctly heard the whine of an approaching drone, probably just one from the sound of it. It was coming closer and closer. At that exact moment, the priest returned.
Don’t stop there! Read the next chapter!