Previous Post - Stage 2 - “Death Road Duel”
“Well, looks like this is that time.” Jake said from behind the wheel, the altimeter on the dash slowly climbing, and climbing, and climbing. “Glad we took this from a junked airplane before we started this race.” Cody opened the glovebox and fished out the Viagra, with a stupid grin.
“You know, I’ve never done this before.” Cody said, laughing at the absurdity.
“I have. Not for altitude, either. Freshman year of college, I thought it’d be a great idea to use this for… Let’s just say some extra ‘staying power’ during the after-party with my girlfriend. No, she wasn’t impressed when she had to take me to the hospital after four hours. Can’t believe I’m taking one again, though at least this time, it’s for a better reason than ‘If I can bang my gal all night, I’ll be the envy of the dorms.’ Get the water, we’re gonna need it.” Jake said, chuckling.
The two of them downed their iconic ‘little blue pills’ and continued on, the Travette singing its way up the mountain, turbocharged inline 3 roaring away in Drive, the added boost keeping them from losing power.
“Shame we’re rear-wheel-drive, we’d probably make better time if we weren’t spinning the tires so much.” Cody said, though he noticed the Dirt Warriors were slowly falling back. “Wonder what’s bothering them.” Cody said, jabbing his thumb over his shoulder at the car behind them.
“Altitude, most likely. Wouldn’t be surprised if we’re driving a bit of a rarity, a turbocharged car. We may only have 100 horsepower, but we’ll still have probably 80 at 15,000 feet. Maybe. I can’t remember my altitude power loss conversions. Someone else with 100 horses would be somewhere around 20 or so, which means the higher we go, the better our power gets compared to theirs. That goes for anyone going for ‘No Replacement For Displacement’ in this run.” Jake said.
They found that the higher they went, the more hilarious everything was. “I feel like that time I walked into Marcus’ room while he had it full of smoke. Everything’s just… You know.”
“Hypoxia. That’s what you’re feeling. Luckily, Luke packed us a little gift under the back seat.” Jake said, pointing to the backpack on the floor. Cody grabbed it and pulled out the contraption within.
“Why is a welding torch a good gift?” Cody asked, with a loopy smile. Jake took his right hand off the wheel, grabbed the torch, then opened the Oxygen bottle ever so slightly and pointed it at Cody’s face. It took only a couple seconds for Cody to come to his senses, then said, “Remind me when we get back to only give him a minor ass-kicking. Who knew his portable oxy-propane welding torch would be a life-saver up here?”
“Just remember, we have to share, and there’s only maybe a couple minutes worth of oxygen in that bottle. And don’t make the mistake of opening the other bottle, you’ll end up with a lung full of propane.” Jake said. “And that’ll fuckin’ kill ya.”
At the end of the stage, Jake parked the little Vheego Travette and helped set up a rudimentary camp. Cody checked their status, then said, “Lost two more. Not surprising, either.”
“What’s surprising is how far this little shitbox has carried us. Proof that a Rental is the right choice, perhaps, or just sheer dumb luck. Either way, let’s rest up what we can, prepare for the next stage.” Jake replied.