Manna from Idaho

We stood in the middle of the field. A warm breeze made the wheat sway, undulating to and over the horizon.

"I don't get it, mate. What's awaiting us in this field?" The sweat stains under his armpits, streaky grease marks running down his face, and the limpness of his leather jacket in his hand like some dead, heavy thing didn't convey "Good Time Charlie." Which was his nicnkname. So he was out of sorts, you might say. Which was exactly where I wanted him.

You see, "Good Time Charlie" tried to kill me a few miles back. Back when we had a car to share and a general destination in mind. Now here in the middle of the field it seemed like all was forgiven and forgotten. I did notice he kept his other hand, the one not serving as a coat rack to his leather jacket, near his belt, which happened to be where I'd seen him stash a smallish blade when he thought I wasn't looking as we dusted ourselves off after, as I mentioned, the incident in which he tried to kill me.

"I'm not sure. We just need... to wait." The ground between the rows was dusty and dry. If someone were to run out across the field, keeping low, it would kick up quite a cloud. Depending on the wind that could either help or hurt someone's case for getting away. Or for circling back and attacking. One or the other. I didn't have any weapon. I was a Bible and encyclopedia and L Ron Hubbard book salesman, selling whatever tomes it looked like a house might be up for, usually not all three. Traditionally, book salesmen don't carry weapons. We just carry styrofoam coffee cups and fast food wrappers by the dozens. And even then it's not us carrying those things, but our cars. Presumably, my car was drifting, less and less, down the river at a bend near a particularly nasty drop off in the road. So were many, many copies of the Good Books.

And suddenly, there it was. Bursting over the field, coming from the road a hundred yards over the wheat field in front of us: Manna, raining down from the tractor trailer which had just, to all appearances, spontaneously combusted.

To be continued... ?


Again. Our fix didn't seem to "catch," as it were. So let's try that same text again, for good luck.... pleeeeeeease.

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03 Mar, 2008

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