The night sky has a strange way of reflecting back your own loneliness. This is what instills fear of the dark in man. Now this particular night sky was closed in by mountains; the torment dammed up on all sides.
There was a leak in the tent. Light, steady rain snuck in and wrapped around the canvas, clung to the sun and time faded ceiling, wound to its side, and down. A trail which ended wetter ever wetter at the cotton socked feet of Jack Dollar.
Nights like this bore the romance of adventure. Just not during them. He shortened his legs. Closed his eyes. Imagined a Super 8. Red adjusted her body to match his, her pale skin gleaming in the dark. He toyed with a fistful of ideas. A couple involved her paleness. One, her fire red hair. Another was sleep, but at a certain point when sleep won’t come, forcing it only chases it further away and invites madness. The last, the one that won out, was the last can of pork and beans. Or was it chili? The label had fallen off some time back…
Outside seemed strangely drier than inside. The tent had taken on the feel of a bucket. Outside was a far larger bucket. He strode to the decade old or so Fat Boy. Its chrome was blacked out by either exhaust tape, flat primer, or both. He almost stumbled over the beast in the dark. Over the sissy bar was draped an army issued knapsack. The can of pork and beans or chili or fuck…was it creamed corn…was about the only thing in there. Jack went to work on it with his Ka-Bar.
He hit the top of the can with the point of the blade. Hit it a second time. He heard three raps. Three beats. Stopped.
Red bleary-eyed stretched her way to standing out of the pup tent and the silence of her night was broken by the thunder of a fifty caliber bullet forced out the end of a 500 S&W Magnum big ass motherfucking gun. She hadn’t enough time to regret her mistake when she heard the bullet slam into flesh no more than five feet behind her. The body fell into leaves. Her senses alive in fear, she could hear blood pour from the basketball sized hole in the stranger’s chest. Its sound mimicked the rain on the tent’s floor, but heavier in both mood and actual weight.
Jack felt there were others. He mounted the muted beast and roared it to life. A figure drenched in black stiffened at its sound and gave itself away. Jack left nothing of its masked face on its shoulders with another thunderous clap of his hand cannon. He rode toward Red and spun out, offering her up the bitch seat. She jumped on and wrapped her arms around his waist. Pressed her warm flesh to him. He picked off another blackened figure. California Suede. They were really out to send him a message. That message being his own eulogy. He pictured it being read by Thumbs Garza, his only friend and not a very good one. The Injun would say a few glum words and shed a tear afterward as he ate the haunches of the preacher; cooked well done because you simply never can tell where a man of God might have been.
Red clung closer now, they’d hit a road and it looked to open up ahead. All the horses under them were running free now. He felt her hard cock in the small of his back and smiled.