Thursday, June 20, 2019

Mark Wildyr: Headhunter – Chuck

Mark Wildyr: Headhunter – Chuck: markwildyr.com, Post #87 Courtesy of PexSnap.com Now we’ll see what Diego has in mind as he confronts Chuck-called Stocky by his i...

Don Travis: Guest Post of Mark Wildyr’s novel River Otter

Don Travis: Guest Post of Mark Wildyr’s novel River Otter: dontravis.com blog post #342 My fellow Okie Mark Wildyr is trying to get a publisher to pick up the other books in his Cut Hand seri...

Guest Post of Mark Wildyr’s novel River Otter


dontravis.com blog post #342

My fellow Okie Mark Wildyr is trying to get a publisher to pick up the other books in his Cut Hand series. He’s asked to do a guest post presenting the opening to the second book in the series, River Otter. I, of course, graciously consented.

When we reach Chapter l, the first player is River Otter, more commonly called Otter, white man’s name Joseph Strobaw, who was the last spouse of the legendary Billy Strobaw, a white man the Indians knew as the Red Win-tay. The second is Dog Fox, whom Billy gave the white-sounding name of Cuthan Strobaw, so that the youth would never forget his true father, Cut Hand. The year is4, and the Civil War is raging, but has not touched this part of the Wyoming Territory… until now.






RIVER OTTER

By Mark Wildyr





Timbers fall to ringing axes, game to booming sticks.
Hunger drives us from ancestral homes.
Tribal drums go hollow.
Flutes pipe in despair.

Stanza from the poem “Echoes of the Flute” by Mark Wildyr

Prologue

White Stone Hill, Dakota Territory, September 5, 1863

           The sun rising over the smoldering village promised a hot day. The sky was clear blue and cloudless, except for the cumulus of black buzzards circling expectantly overhead. Smoke from blazing lodges rode the wind, burning eyes and carrying the acrid smell of gunpowder and the stench of death across the prairie to the coulees and the short, wooded hills where the Dakota warriors had taken refuge. The very air tasted bitter to the tongue. They were tired; their horses, spent. Even the earth beneath their moccasins seemed exhausted.
          On the run from the Star Chief Sibley since the battle at Big Mound two moons past, they had stood to fight him again at Dead Buffalo Lake. Now for the span of two suns, they had done battle with another Star Chief called Sully, a relentless warrior who spent his time drawing pictures with pigments soaked in water when he wasn’t killing tribesmen.
          Today would bring no respite. The blue coats and their thunder guns were still here, hovering like the feathered bone pickers circling overhead. The white army had inflicted a terrible toll on the Dakota. Warriors were accustomed to staring into the face of death, but how could even the bravest stand against big guns that shredded men and horses with bursts of fire and thunder?
          Inkpaduta, whom the Americans called Red Cap, a dour, pox-scarred war chief, had led them through these many days of slaughter, fighting with a ferocity born of a deep, implacable hatred of whites. He had a wily mind, vicious fangs, and terrible claws, but Sully had numbers, firepower, and tenacity.
          The shelling began again with the booming of cannon and the ear-splitting eruption of hot shells. The fusillade was not so effective now that they had the protection of the gullies and the hills, but Sully would soon be on the move. Their ranks decimated, the Indians withdrew, abandoning food and provisions and leaving their women, children, and wounded to the mercies of the Americans. All was lost now, but at least some of them would live to do battle another day.


Chapter 1

Teacher’s Mead, Dakota Territory, Spring 1864

A whistle drew me outside where a child’s voice from atop the hollow hill behind the house directed my gaze south. Less than half a mile away, six mounted warriors rode west between the Mead and the near shore of the bloated Yanube River. They were too far away to identify, but they did not have the look of Sioux.
Cuthan joined me on the porch. “I guess we know why the blue coat went flying by here. Do you think they’re renegades, Otter?”
An hour earlier, a trooper had passed on the south side of the river, riding hard for Ft. Yanube.
         “If they are renegades, they’ve thrown away the advantage of surprise, but we’d best get everyone inside.”
         I looked toward the near field where six-year-old Alexander stood in the middle of the freshly turned rows. A hand shaded his eyes as he stared at the riders. He caught his father’s wave, dropped the bag of corn seed he was holding, and started for the house. John, younger by a year, shot around the corner of the porch, eyes agog. He’d given us the warning from the hill.
         “Do you see them, Pa? Do you see them?”
         “We see them, Son,” Cuthan said. “It took sharp eyes to spot those riders in the tree line. You did well.”
         Glowing from this praise, the boy self-consciously snatched off his hat and slapped it against his leg to free it of dust, as he’d seen his father do a thousand times.
         The warriors had halted and were talking among themselves. After a moment, they headed in our direction at a slow, cautious pace. Each cradled a long gun in his arms.
         Cuthan’s wife, Mary, stepped out onto the porch. “What’s happening?”
         “Get back inside,” I said sharply. Those warriors should see a family of natives, not a yellow-headed American woman. “Where are the girls?”
         “They’re in the house. Oh!” she gasped as she caught sight of the warriors.
         “Go inside with your mother,” Cuthan said to the two boys. “Let’s join them, Otter.”
         “I want to talk to those men.”
         “We can talk through the door.”
         “I want to know what’s happening. The best way is to go out and talk like men.” I said.
         “I’ll get our rifles.”
         “I’ll go alone and unarmed. If anything happens, send Mary and the children through the secret tunnel into the hollow hill. You stay in the house. Fight them off if you have to.”
         “I’m not going to let you—”
         “Think of your wife and fry and do as I say. I’ll be all right.”
         I walked to the barn, trying to appear unhurried. White Patch, anxious for exercise, danced in anticipation as I threw a halter over his long nose. I didn’t bother to saddle the pinto. I would have preferred to greet the strangers in my breechclout, but Mary considered them uncivilized, so I refrained from wearing mine around the Mead. I stripped my white man’s shirt over my head and dropped it in the dirt. Getting rid of the garment made me look more like who I was.
         By the time I left the farmyard, the riders had almost reached the line of trees bordering the old game trail running in front of the place. When I got within a hundred paces of the leading horseman, I gave the open-handed salute. He returned the gesture as we pulled up facing one another.
         “Hah-ue.” I spoke the Lakota greeting even though I could see these were foreign Indians. Southern Plains from the look of them. Four wore their hair in a pay-shah—a roach. One was in braids, and the sixth wore a turban of some sort. “I am River Otter.”
         “I don’t speak Sioux,” the leader said in passable English.
         I repeated my name in the American language.
         “I have heard of you. The Last Yanube, they say.”
         “Almost, although the man who farms this land has the same blood I do. What can we do for you?”
         He squared his impressive shoulders. “I am Big Scar. My men and I are Cherokee.”
         “You are a long way from Cherokee country, and you do not have the look of a wandering star-gazer.”
         They broke into laughter and chattered among themselves for a moment.
         “Do you fly the Stars and Bars or the Stars and Stripes?” Scar asked.
         “Neither. We are peaceful tribesmen who want no part of the war. We are content to let the whites kill one another while we mind our own business.”
         The Cherokee leader was a striking, reddish-hued man with a meaty nose and a purple scar across his right cheek. He wore his hair in a stiff roach and was dressed in fringed buckskin trousers, a leather vest, and a bone breastplate. He pursed his heavy lips. “A warrior should choose a side and fight for it.” Lifting a bare arm, he indicated his companions. “Join us and raise the hatchet against the people who killed your village.”
         “Those people are dead now, and I had a hand in seeing some of them to that end. I have no quarrel with the others.”
         “Are there tribesmen in the area who will join us?”
         I motioned over my shoulder. “My adopted son, Cuthan, and I are the last bloods in the hundred fifty-mile stretch between Ft. Ramson and Ft. Yanube, although occasional travelers come through the territory going from where they have been to where they are headed. You seem to ride with some purpose in mind. Was it you who frightened the army man who went flying past earlier?”
         The men laughed again. “You are right. He was running away from us. We intend to stop him before he reaches the fort up the river.”
         “Then I apologize for detaining you.”
         “No need. The way the blue coat was flogging his horse, he’ll ride the animal to death and have to walk the rest of his journey.”
         “Why do the Cherokee come all the way up here to frighten our whites? Don’t you have enough of your own?”
         “Aye, more than enough. But we are part of a big Confederate army come to take this country away from your whites and give it to ours. We are the Native Detachment of McComber’s Battalion.”
         I kept my Indian face in place. McComber’s Battalion meant nothing to me. “There is a Confederate army behind you?”
         “The main detachment is at Ft. Ramson.”
         “Have they taken the fort?”
         “They are doing battle for it as we speak. We are to catch the outrider and stop him from bringing reinforcements.”
         My heart lurched. I felt as if the blood drained from my face and puddled in my moccasins. The American’s Civil War, until now merely a series of news dispatches and gossip items, had arrived on our doorstep.
         “I see no singing wires,” Scar said. “Does that mean they have no telegraph at Yanube?”
         “Nay, it does not reach that far.” I saw no harm in answering honestly, since I perceived this as a test of something he already knew.
         “Good. Who is with you in the stone house? I see two rifle barrels sticking from gun ports. If I didn’t know better, I’d say this was Ft. Yanube. It is built like a blockhouse.
         “That describes Teacher’s Mead. The stone house was built back when there were hostile tribes in the area.”
         “And the rifles pointing at us?”
         “One is in the hands of Cuthan Strobaw, the son of Cut Hand, last chief of the Yanube. The other is held by his wife.”
         “Tell them it would not be wise to be so unfriendly when next we meet.” He waved his companions toward the river before turning back to me. “The farm to your east. Is that owned by bloods, too?”
         “That is the home of some foreign settlers. They, too, take no sides in this war. They came across the ocean to farm in peace.”
         The man nodded. “The river is angry. Is there a walk-across?”
         “Our snowmelt is just ending, so you’ve come when the waters are at their highest. The best walk is thirty paces to the right of the big cottonwood you see yonder. Even it is dangerous this time of year. I would not risk it.”
         Scar had to get his men to the other side in order to catch up with the dispatch rider, and my last remark was a subtle challenge. He fixed his eyes on me for a long moment, although I was unable to discern if it was rudeness or merely his adoption of the American habit of staring. Then he wheeled and caught up with his companions as they rode for the river at a leisurely pace.

*****

The Strobaw family’s life has been shaped by the people and the events ever since Billy Strobaw came to the territory in 1832, fleeing New York where his family was tainted by their loyalty to the crown during the Revolutionary War. Now, another war is about to change things for them once again.

If you would like to read more of the book, please let DSP Publications know of your interest.

Now my mantra: Keep on reading and keep on writing. You have something to say, so say it!

My personal links: (Note the change in the Email address)

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donald.travis.982
Twitter: @dontravis3

Buy links to Abaddon’s Locusts:


See you next week.

Don

New Posts are published at 6:00 a.m. each Thursday.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Don Travis: More From the Upcoming The Voxlightner Scandal

Don Travis: More From the Upcoming The Voxlightner Scandal: dontravis.com blog post #341 Artist: Maria Fanning I recently received the third edit of The Voxlightner Scandal from DSP Publicat...

More From the Upcoming The Voxlightner Scandal


dontravis.com blog post #341

Artist: Maria Fanning
I recently received the third edit of The Voxlightner Scandal from DSP Publications for my review. As this is the last opportunity to make changes to the manuscript, so I always read the third edit from beginning to end. Guess what? I always make changes. I think I will be making changes to my obit as they lower the casket into the ground. My philosophy is that a manuscript is never finished, it's just that you get so sick of it you can’t stand to read it again.

At any rate, I wanted to give you another glimpse of the sixth BJ Vinson mystery before it reaches the publication state. No date has been set yet, but likely sometime early next year.

The scene I’ve chosen opens Chapter 4 of the book when the matriarch of the Voxlightner family summons BJ to “the Castle.” Let’s take a look.

*****
THE VOXLIGHTNER SCANDAL


When Paul and I went to the office the next morning after an early therapy swim at the country club, a surprise awaited us. Hazel waved a phone slip in my face the moment I came through the outer door.
“You have a call you need to return right away.”
I accepted the pink slip with a name and number printed in Hazel’s careful handwriting. “Lucinda Caulkins…. Caulkins,” I mumbled.
“She’s old Marshall Voxlightner’s daughter,” Hazel said. “Caulkins is her married name.”
“Ah.” No wonder my office manager was so animated. She either anticipated a client to pay for the work we were already doing or someone demanding that we cease doing it. Either way an advantage for the firm’s bottom line from her perspective. “Okay. I’ll give her a ring.”
Paul joined me as I placed the call and activated the speaker phone when someone answered the ring. I identified myself and was asked to hold.
Within a minute a calm, well-modulated voice came on the line. “My name is Lucinda Caulkins, Mr. Vinson. Thank you for returning my call. I wonder if it would be convenient for you to drop by and speak with my mother? She has a matter she would like to discuss.” The hint of a slow drawl reminded me she had lived for the last several years with a real estate developer husband in Virginia.
“Certainly. When would be convenient?”
“Would two suit your schedule?”
“See you at two.” At Paul’s frantic pantomime I hastily added, “Would it be permissible to bring an associate?”
“Of course.”


A uniformed maid answered the door, but a slender woman with frosted brown hair stood behind her in the foyer. She stepped forward and offered a hand as the maid discreetly slipped away. Her simple but elegant outfit wasn’t off the rack.
As we exchanged greetings, I identified Paul as my associate. Lucinda Caulkins greeted him as politely as she had me before leading the way to a large, comfortable room. I would have called it a living room, but in this setting, it was more properly a drawing room. The outside of this stone-and-brick edifice might truly resemble a medieval castle, yet the interior was modern, with big airy rooms… although the effect was spoiled somewhat by furniture that might easily have come out of the Victorian age.
A small, thin woman I’d completely overlooked when we entered the room rose from the depths of a tufted wing chair with the aid of an ebony cane. Despite being emaciated she moved with alacrity. Her smile was welcoming, not formal.
“Mother,” Lucinda said, moving to the older woman’s side, “may I present Mr. B. J. Vinson and his associate, Paul Barton. They’ve come at our invitation. My mother, Mrs. Dorothy Wellbourne Voxlightner.”
“Of course. Welcome to Voxlightner Castle.” The frail hand she offered still had strength in it. I estimated she must be in her mideighties. Her voice reminded me of her daughter’s without the slight, acquired southern drawl. I’d heard stories about this woman all my life, and here she stood, without hubris, not a prima donna or misanthrope, but warm and charming.
She startled us with a tinkling laugh. “I used to be so self-conscious over such a pretentious description of our home, but Marshall was adamant about it. Over the years it’s become easier.”
“It is a castle, ma’am,” Paul put in, a smile dimpling his cheeks.
“I like this one,” the older woman said, taking his hand to shake and pat at the same time. “You must call me Dorothy.”
“Wouldn’t dream of it,” he said, bringing her hand to his lips.
She drew him to a big camelback sofa and pulled him down beside her. “I didn’t know they made them like this any longer.” She addressed Paul. “Tea? Coffee? You don’t look old enough for highballs.”
“Thank you, ma’am, I’ll pass.”
After I also declined refreshment, Lucinda put things back on track. “Mr. Vinson, I understand you’re working with the police on Pierce’s murder, is that correct?”
“Both Paul and I are consulting with Detective Roy Guerra, the officer in charge of the investigation.”
“Then we have a proposition for you.” Lucinda glanced at her mother and received a small nod before proceeding. “As you may be aware, my brother, Barron, disappeared on Monday, March 15, 2004 and has not been seen or heard from since. We believe it is time to have him declared dead. We would like your help.”
I wasn’t able to hide my astonishment. At a minimum my eyebrows must have reacted. “I am surprised you haven’t taken that step before now. New Mexico law requires only a waiting period of five years. Five years elapsed in 2009.”
“My father wasn’t willing to live the scandal all over again. And any such petition was certain to raise it. Then, of course, that was the year my father died, and probating his estate occupied our attention. Since then we’ve honored his wishes.”
“Likely out of inertia,” Mrs. Voxlightner put in.
Distaste edged Lucinda’s voice when she spoke after a slight pause. “When Pierce told us he was going to recreate all the details with his new book, we objected. But he claimed he was going to expose the perpetrators and exonerate the family.”
“Did he identify these perpetrators?”
She shook her head. “No. He rudely refused to reveal anything. Said it was too dangerous. And given what happened to him, perhaps he was right.”
“You believe someone involved in the scandal killed Pierce Belhaven?”
Lucinda leveled a cool stare at me. “What other explanation could there be?”
I turned to Mrs. Voxlightner. “Are there children other than Mrs. Caulkins and Barron?”
She shook her head. “Barron was our only son.”
“All right. I understand the situation now, but you don’t need my services. As I understand the Uniform Probate Code, you are not required to conduct a search for your son. If he has not been seen nor heard from this past five years, that is sufficient. Your attorney can file a petition for a declaration of death.”
The tiny elegant woman sitting beside Paul on the sofa cleared her throat and claimed the room’s attention as she reached for a leather-clad folio on the coffee table. “I fear we’re not making ourselves clear. Because Pierce was so certain he could uncover the swindlers who looted the precious metals company, we want you to investigate his death and bring his murderer to justice. If in the process you determine exactly what happened to Barron, that would be a plus for us.”
She opened the folio and held out a photo in her graceful fingers. “This is the way the world last saw my son. It’s the final image of him I have as well. This is not acceptable to me.”
I took the FBI wanted poster of a wild-eyed image of Barron Voxlightner staring back at me. The legend read: Wanted for Murder and Grand Theft.
“This is not the way I want to remember my son. Nor do I want others thinking that of him. Locate Barron if you can. If not please see if you can determine what happened to him. When you are finished, we will have my son declared dead… if it’s appropriate.”
The room was still while I nibbled on my lower lip. “Mrs. Voxlightner, the police and a couple of insurance companies investigated that situation years ago. They had no luck, so it’s doubtful I can do better.”
The lady smiled at me. “But don’t you see? Pierce swore he uncovered something he believed would lead him to the answer to the mystery. Since you’re investigating his death, you just need to find what that was. While he did not share his information with us, I do know it was something he came across while he was with the New Mexico Power and Light Company.”
“You are aware his files were stolen and his computers destroyed, aren’t you?”
“Come now, Mr. Vinson, we have faith in you. I’ve made some inquiries and am satisfied you can uncover something for us. If nothing else, make certain Barron has truly vanished without leaving a trace. Please provide us with whatever contract you require, and we will give you an appropriate retainer.”
“On one condition, Mrs. Voxlightner.”
“And what, pray tell, is that?”
“You’ll call me BJ instead of Mr. Vinson.”
“Agreed. And I am Dorothy.”

*****

I suppose every city, town, and village in the world has at least one family around which stories and myths and misconceptions swirl. The Voxlightners was one of Albuquerque’s which is one reason why BJ is so easily persuaded to take a look into a case that the police, the FBI, and others agencies had sought in vain to solve. But as so often happens—one murder leads back to another. Or does it?

Now my mantra: Keep on reading and keep on writing. You have something to say, so say it!

My personal links: (Note the change in the Email address)

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donald.travis.982
Twitter: @dontravis3

Buy links to Abaddon’s Locusts:


See you next week.

Don

New Posts are published at 6:00 a.m. each Thursday.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

A Little Dent Makes a Big Impression


dontravis.com blog post #340

Courtesy of Pixabay
Received a lot of hits on “Splendid Desolation,” but few comments. Maybe it didn’t attract enough fantasy fiction fans. That’s the price you pay when you wander all over the literary map. Such as with this week’s submission.

*****
A LITTLE DENT MAKES A BIG IMPRESSION

Seven o’clock. In the PM. Long day. Tired… and apparently careless. As I backed my Chevy Blazer into a parking spot at my apartment complex, I let the day’s worries get to me. I hit the brakes as soon as I felt contact and pulled forward a bit before getting out. Yep, the yellowToyota RAV4 in the parking space next to me sported a fresh dent in the rear passenger’s panel. My boat? Not a scratch.
Considering the space to be jinxed, I moved two parking spots over and paid more attention this time as I backed between the two white lines. Upon switching off the motor, I dithered over what to do. I’d seen the RAV in the lot often, so obviously the owner lived in my neck of the woods. Should I leave a note confessing my sin, or just keep an eye out for the owner. Or maybe figure the dude had uninsured motorist coverage and let his insurance company take care of it. Yeah. That was it.


I did not sleep well that night and came to the conclusion that my conscience was pestering the daylights out of me. Well, too bad, conscience, a little dent wasn’t worth all the trouble. So I pounded the pillow into submission and went back to sleep. Have you ever dreamed of a little dent in a car panel? It was boring enough so that I should have slept like the preverbal log but pesky enough to jerk me awake every few minutes.


Okay, this thing had to be dealt with… but how. What was the safest course for me? Dump a couple of hundred-dollar bills in an envelope and put it under the RAV’s windshield wiper anonymously? That approach appealed. No way did I want to become personally involved in a confession/accusation thing. For all I knew the SUV was owned by that scary two hundred-fifty pounder with a long black beard who skulked past my apartment every morning. He looked like he’d physically engage with a fellow for just looking at him wrong, much less putting a dent in his ride.
Or maybe it was the beanpole at the far end of the building who looked to be a clerk of some sort. Couldn’t have been thirty yet, and he was already stooped over like he perpetually scribbled in a ledger book or hammered on a typewriter. Naw. He looked nerdy enough to have a computer, not a typewriter.
Or it could be…. Yak! Stop it. Just keep an eye on the RAV and try to spot the owner.


A couple of days passed without me identifying the car’s driver. Our paths never crossed when I was coming or going. All I saw was the parked vehicle when I came home from work. Actually, the damage looked uglier than I’d first thought. Maybe I should have reported it to my insurance company, but I have a hellacious deductible, so why bother? It would all come out of my pocket anyway… plus the cost of my policy would go up at renewal time. Nope, I’d just have to smother my conscience and do a few good deeds in recompense… the kinds that don’t cost an arm and a leg.

Saturday morning, I stood shirtless on my patio with a cup of strong coffee in my hand when this really gorgeous dish sauntered by. She’d moved in a couple of doors down about a month ago. A month ago? That was about when the RAV showed up in the parking lot!
I scooted back inside the apartment to throw on a shirt and slip into some moccasins before banging through my door and heading for the parking lot. Sure enough, the girl with the graceful sway headed straight to the RAV.
“Excuse me, miss,” I called, struggling with the top button on my shirt. Oh, Lord! I hadn’t shaved yet. No wonder she was examining me with an uncertain look on her lovely face.
“Are you speaking to me?” she asked in a low, melodious voice.
“Yes, ma’am,” I said, short of breath as I caught up with her. “Hi, I’m Rob Sterling.”
Her left eyebrow arched. “Rod Sterling? Aren’t you dead?”
“Rob. Rob Sterling. Not Rod Sterling. I’m your neighbor in 121.”
She relaxed. “Hello, I’m Marty Hanover. Nice to meet you.”
“I… uh, I was trying to catch the owner of this vehicle. The RAV is yours, isn’t it?”
She nodded.
“Well, I have a confession to make. I accidentally backed into your car and left that dent.” Like some gawky, inexperienced actor, I dramatically indicated the injured panel.
“You did that?”
Not quite certain whether her tone was accusatory or expressed relief, I nodded. “Yes, sorry. I came home late from work and was tired and wasn’t paying attention. That’s my Blazer over there, the red one.”
“Do you always back into parking spaces?”
I shrugged and managed a half laugh. “Yeah. There are kids in the complex, and I feel safer pulling out in the morning with only one cup of coffee under my belt. Kids are safer, too.”
“But apparently not cars.”
That threw me, but I soldiered on. “Anyway, I want to make it right. If you’ll have it repaired, I’ll pay the bill.”
That should have brought a smile but elicited a frown. “I don’t know much about car repairs. I don’t know where to take it. Or if I’m being treated fairly. Or—”
“I’ve got a mechanic who also does body work. Used him for a couple of years. Be happy to recommend him.”
The delayed smile appeared, causing my heart to pitter-patter. “That would be nice. Could you also go with me? You know how to talk car repairs. I don’t.”
“Sure. When would you like to go?”
“Is he open on Saturday?”
“Until noon.”
“Would now be convenient?”
“Absolutely.”
“Your car or mine?” she asked.
“Since he has to look at the damage it would have to be yours. We’ll go down, have him look it over, and make an appointment for the repair job.”
 “Thank you. That’s very nice of you.”
“Not at all. After all, I caused all the folderol.”
Within two blocks, I knew she’d moved to town to take a job at the University of New Mexico, hailed from Chicago, wasn’t sure if she liked Albuquerque, and wasn’t married or engaged. When we arrived at the shop, my friend took a look at the damage, quoted a price that took my breath away—but still less than my deductible—and made an appointment for Monday morning.
As we headed back to the apartment complex, a thought occurred. “How are you going to get to work after you drop the RAV off at the shop on Monday?” I asked.
“Taxi… bus. I’m not sure.”
“How about if I follow you down and take you to work?”
“What about your job?”
“I’ll let them know I’m going to be late.”
“Are you sure?”
“You bet.” I drew breath and held it a bit. “And I’ll pick you up Monday afternoon and drive you to pick up your car.”
“I don’t want to become a pest.”
Please be a pest! “That’s okay. I put the dent in your RAV, didn’t I?” Bless that little dent.
“So you say.”
“And after that, we could stop somewhere for an early dinner, maybe.”
She smiled. Oh, what a smile! “That would be nice. Maybe I’m going to like Albuquerque after all.”
Sometimes a little dent makes a big impression.

*****

Looks like Rob made a connection… and all it cost him was something less than his insurance deductible. Maybe it’s the start of something wonderful, life changing even. I hope so.

Now my mantra: Keep on reading and keep on writing. You have something to say, so say it!

My personal links: (Note the change in the Email address)

Facebook: www.facebook.com/donald.travis.982
Twitter: @dontravis3

Buy links to Abaddon’s Locusts:


See you next week.

Don

New Posts are published at 6:00 a.m. each Thursday.

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