Negotiate My Arse

“Barnes. How many civilians are in there?â€? Griggs sighed, cradling the handset.

“Griggs, no.â€? Novua slammed his laptop closed. “This is not Stanton. Nothing we do here is going to bring those kids back. We can’t go in.â€?

“Damn it Barnes,â€? ignoring Novua, “how many?â€?

“We think twenty-six, sir. Could be up to thirty-five.â€?

“Damn!â€? Griggs turned, pinching the bridge of his nose, “and how many can we get on the roof?â€?

“They’ve already killed one hostage Griggs, I’m pretty certain they’re willing to kill more. What we need is time. Get back on the phone and negotiate. Tell ‘em we got half. We need to get more civilians out of there before we go in half-cocked, guns blazing.â€?

“They’re not going to let any of them just walk out of there.â€? Griggs turned back to look at his crew, “don’t you understand? If we don’t go in there now, they’re all going to be dead. Now how many rifles can we put on that damn roof?â€?

Novua sat down, defeated. “You can’t bring them back. You’re only going to make things worse here.â€?

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