A Storyby Don Waters
The price tag on the Night Owl Infrared Specs was steep, but the binoculars do the job. Amplify starlight. Invert darkness. Organize the desert into Cye’s X-ray.
A green-tinted figure roams into Cye’s lens. “Uno.” He sees another. He starts the math. “Two.”
This is Cye’s second run in a month. He’s nicknamed the rendezvous El Cementerio because several large, wind-chiseled boulders have eroded into the shape of headstones. Rumor has it, beneath every other rock near the border is a grave. Out here, along the line, Cye believes it.
He counts nine men a half mile away. They’re kicking up a hell of a dust cloud, and they’re late but on target. Cye flips a lever under his dash. A strobe attached to his front grill begins to pulse. His Suburban becomes a beacon. When the group spots him, they turn.
In the three years he’s been running illegals, Cye’s seen his share. When he’s not playing hide-and-seek with Bronco-patrolling border cops, he’s watching missile-heavy jets lay fume trails across the sky. Even when his passengers avoid the bombs, the sunlight inflicts its varying punishments. Heat exhaustion, dehydration, hyperthermia, or some combination of.