The Rule of Thoughts by James Dashner

The Rule of Thoughts by James Dashner


Author:James Dashner [Dashner, James]
Language: eng
Format: epub
ISBN: 978-0-375-98464-8
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Published: 2014-08-25T16:00:00+00:00

The green glow of Sarah’s NetScreen lit the way as they scurried through a spooky world of cubicles and desks and potted plants—the employees had long since evacuated. The sounds of pursuit echoed throughout the floor, shouted directions and the rustle of footsteps on carpet. People were spreading out until it became impossible to tell what noise was coming from where. Michael could feel every thump of his escalated heartbeat in his throat and ears, the blood pumping. Finally, Sarah stopped at a large breakroom, where a full kitchen and several tables had been set up. Michael knew they couldn’t risk going any farther—there were too many people following them, and they were too spread out.

“Under those cabinets,” Bryson whispered, pointing at some wide doors under the long kitchen counter, where a toaster and coffee machine were tucked away.

“Perfect,” Sarah replied. “I’ll keep throwing them off.” She opened a cabinet in the middle and dropped to her knees.

Michael went to her right, crouched down, and opened one of the wooden doors. There was plenty of space, just a few paper plates and plastic utensils scattered along the bottom. He pushed them all to the side and crawled in, turning to sit and face the door. He pulled his knees as close to his chest as he could and reached out and closed the cabinet. The sudden darkness tempted him to squeeze his EarCuff and bring up his NetScreen again, just for the comfort of it, but he resisted. He waited blindly, concentrating on slowing his breath and heartbeat and listening for activity.

Soon there was silence. Michael didn’t know when it had happened, but at some point the alarms had stopped clanging. It showed how anxious he’d been that he hadn’t noticed. Besides the soft sound of his own small breaths, everything was quiet and still. And dark.

Several minutes passed. He couldn’t get comfortable in the small, cramped space, no matter how much he shifted. His back ached and his muscles were stiff. He knew Sarah was in the next cabinet over, her NetScreen probably dimmed as much as possible, working on a way to get out of there. There had to be a way. And if there was, Michael had no doubt that she’d figure it out.

Still, he hadn’t stopped sweating. His nerves were a jumble of frayed cords, ready to snap. People were out there, in the halls, throughout the building, looking for him. And not just as a missing person—they thought he was a terrorist, a kidnapper, an accomplice, a fugitive. Once the police had them, it wouldn’t be long before Kaine knew where they were. And then his people—who he guessed were former Tangents like Michael—would come next.

There was a sound somewhere nearby, and not from the other cabinets. A cough or clearing of the throat. Michael froze and listened.

The shuffle of footsteps, more than one person. They moved in bursts, as if they were sweeping the area bit by bit, going from one spot to the next.


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