Maria had taken the keys to her car from the police officer and had fled with Pierce. They knew that before the officer was found they would be far away, but maybe not far enough.
“What are we going to do now?” asked Pierce. “The gold is lost, and we don’t know where it is without the map. On top of that we will have the local police on our tails quickly. I think that the best thing to do now would be to call up my lawyer, Stevens. He is the one behind all this and if he has any ideas, it would be him..”
“I guess you’re right,” Maria said. “We’ll follow his tips and see what happens. Finding that woman Gwen could be a good starting point but where could she be?”
“Let’s go to a hotel, hide there for a while and call my lawyer.”
“Alright, if you think that it is the best thing to do.” Maria took the road straight to Cusco as she wanted to get as far away from Machu Pichu as possible.
The short trip back to Cusco was sombre. No one was speaking as both of them were weighing their options. They had no guns to defend themselves and maybe that was a blessing in disguise after all. Instead of going to a hotel to book a room immediately they decided to place that phone call. They went straight to the Telefonica del Peru to make that long distance call. Located on the Avenida Del Sol, it is one of the main roads radiating from the busy square called Plaza de Armas. They found the place to be deserted. Pierce went in and tried calling Stevens but to no avail, only getting his answering machine. He had no choice but to leave a message, telling him that they would be staying at the cheap inn called Los Portales. For now, it was best to stay put and wait for the call. They needed guns, badly. They were out powered by Gwen precisely because she was armed with a knife. Guns would equal things out.
“Maria, we have to buy guns. Where we can we buy them here?” asked Pierce.
“Look, I don’t want a gun, I don’t think that I could handle this, but I know where to buy them. There’s a local here that sells them undercover. I’ll go to him and buy one for you, a small gun, okay?
“That’s fine by me but, why don’t you want to be armed as a precaution at least?
“No, I won’t. I’ve seen too many people killed by guns in the area, especially after drinking binges and that scares me. I hate guns in fact.” Maria was looking at Pierce and was emotional. She wiped a tear from her eyes.
“What is it?” asked Pierce, concerned at her sudden outburst. He walked towards her and put a friendly hand on her shoulders. She looked straight at him.
“My dad killed my mom in a drunken stupor. He said it was an accident, thinking she was a robber but he was drunk. I never forgave him and since that day I have never handled guns, ever.” She was still wiping her tears when Pierce took her in his arms and held her tightly, kissing her gently on the cheeks.
“I understand. Get the gun for me then and it will be alright, okay?” Pierce was still holding her. She simply nodded to say yes, unable to speak as she was reliving the death of her mother.
She knew where to find these gun dealers. They were never far from certain areas were people were, the shady people that is. She located one in an alley near a bar. They settled on a price and the gun was bought promptly. She hadn’t noticed but she had been seen by one of the spies of the guardians, who immediately notified Gwen.