“Tiom, this is Tarampura, over?” Marta’s transmission came in more clearly with the improving weather.
Jason, Sandy, Rachel, and other pilots crowded around the radio. Rachel kept busy to keep her composure.
“This is Tiom. Go ahead,” Rachel answered.
“How are you holding up, break? Have you heard anything yet, over?” Marta sounded just as tired as they did, having been in constant prayer.
“Not yet, but we haven’t given up, over,” Rachel responded.
“I’m so sorry, and I haven’t given up either, break. Not with all the experience these bush pilots have, break. I’m just here if you need me, over,” Marta said groggily.
“We appreciate your staying by the radio for us, break. The pilots are going over the flight route now and plan to fly out tomorrow to search for the... the... plane, over.” Rachel sobbed.
“Hey,” Marta replied. “It’s going to be just fine, over.”
“Thanks,” Rachel sniffed.
“I think we should keep the airwaves clear. So, goodnight, break. Keep me informed if you hear anything, out.” Marta signed off the radio and looked at Numah, who smiled back assuringly.
“Thank you all for staying up with me. You should go to sleep with your families now,” Marta said under heavy eyelids.
“No, Marta, we spoke. We each take time to listen radio. Something happen, we wake you up. You go sleep,” Numah insisted.Without protesting, Marta went to bed, and wasn’t disturbed for the rest of the night.
Jeffrey W. Bennett, is the author of Commitment-A Novel and other non-fiction books, novels and periodicals.