The Gypsy's Address
“I hope what I saw isn’t the way this creature lives,” Something spoke without forcing.
Makin’ Wind was feeling combative. But the Punc admired Strange with his eyes. He approached to stand between Makin’ and a woman easy to idolize:
“What a blossom this day to illumine. One could think you were more than human. . . Do believe that our feelings for that critter are tender. It was me she meant to kick. But the sun in her eyes had too much splendor. . . If with that whip at your hip you’re the same as of whom I’ve heard I respectfully ask your autograph.”
“I know you as well. And your partner there with the temper.”
“If you had one I’d sever your member!” Makin’ Wind added fuel, stepping up beside the Punc to gesture a duel.
Something unlaced her whip, romanced its handle with her fingers as its length snaked to the ground. Now Old Penny stood beside her, though reluctant his psychology.
You must have a doctorate in dullology,” remarked the Punc to he. “You don’t know with whom you mess, as big a fool as can be. Your corpse a grave will caress if not back off cowardly.”
Though long since weary of heroics Penny couldn’t seem to elude them. He gave the gods above a look as if to say, “What have you got me into now?” We, looking down from peregrine’s wings making arcs in the air, silently answer, “Handle it.”
“Little man,” threatened Wind, “you much annoy. To cut your throat with your own knife I’ll quite enjoy.”
See how life for Penny goes? Though no greater hero my seeing knows he was yet more anonymous than two noisy crows. . . But look, Something Strange smiling, giving Makin’ Wind a wink with her left eye.
“Who you winkin’ at, sissy pie?” Makin’ wants to know.
Something Strange kept smiling, then gave her right eye a wink. Alias instantly ran up from behind Makin’ Wind, moving so fast she made no sound. She leapt, then with all four paws used the back of Makin’s head for a board to spring her back to the ground. That same instant Something wrapped the tail of her whip around the butt of the Punctuator’s shotgun, lifted it from its harness and slid it to Penny’s feet. The Punc was just as fast. He drew his .45 as Penny unsheathed his knife. But every shot the Punc made Old Penny ricocheted, brilliant flashes from his blade ‘til no bullets left to be paid. Meanwhile the tongue of Something’s whip did some sharp licking at the butt of Makin’s overalls, making her hop without sticking:
Snap! “Ooh!” Snap! “Ooh!” Snap! “Ooh!” Snap! “Oooooooh! Oh, my darling, such blisses! That whip of yours hisses such potent kisses!” smiled Makin’, allurement rich. Strange saw eyelashes batting on a monstrous spud, blinked her eyes to erase a seeming illusion. But it was clear as a stein of Mississippi Mud: Wind wafted forward with ardor, leaving Strange no solution. Though more familiar with the sounds of a shotgun than most, Makin’ heard choirs, so with love’s potions engrossed.
“Penny!” Strange appealed.
“One more step and say your prayers in pairs,” Old Penny said, shotgun over his wrist, aimed at Wind’s head. “’Cause your brain to your rest will no longer be wed.”
Their attempt to stain the ground with blood interrupted, Makin’ and the Punc ceased all but disgusted.
“Better make sure these two can’t go anywhere for a while,” Old Penny told Strange. Something ran to their trucks and lifted the hoods of the Freightliner and Western Star. Alias meanwhile had chewed through the rope binding the curious pig, led him to Something’s truck and nudged him up into the passenger seat where they waited with much “How-do-you-do?” sniffing.
“No doubt that with that knife your damned good,” spoke the Punc with a cavalier mien. “But the next time we meet bring a cross of wood. ‘Cause into your grave is where you’ll careen.”
“Ever step on a snail?” Makin’ added. “We’re fated to thus end your tale.”
“So you sputter from your gutter,” Penny nearly said. But, thinking again, he spoke, instead, ”We’ll leave you whole to eat bread missing butter,” nodding at Strange as she approached with a fuel filter in each hand. Makin’ spat, an impolite message to Penny to send. The Punc did as well, that Strange comprehend that though she had won such wasn’t the end.
“You’ll find your filters eight miles down the road,” Strange replied. “With trucks you’ll go unattired ‘til walk the distance that’s required.”
“If you’re smart you’ll kill us now,” suggested the Punc. “There will be a next time.”
“With bullets to plow your brow,” Makin’ appended. “The Punc don’t take lightly to being offended.”
Old Penny and Something backed off, returning to their trucks. Penny flung the Punctuator’s shotgun out his passenger window before exiting the ramp behind Something Strange to the tune of Cruisin’ by the Stray Cats.
“Quick! Get a lock on that dark truck!” ordered the Punc. “You better have a spare filter with you!”
“Yeah! Left compartment! Here’s the key!” Makin’ dug a spare from her overalls pocket, tossed it to the Punc, then jumped up into her Western Star and began to press the buttons to her tracking system which screen lit up atop the panel. . . “We’re on!”
“And who do we have here?” Something wondered, glancing over at the piglet with which Alias shared her seat. Alias had removed the rope from around the porker’s neck, which Something explored with her fingers while looking him over. The pig waited about three miles before:
“Cuddly,” rather faintly.
Something Strange heard “Cuddly” from somewhere. She glanced at the piglet, at Alias, then shook her head. Then, three more miles down the highway:
“What?” Strange looked about, peered at the pig, then her Shepard. “Alias? Did you hear something? Sounded like someone talking.” Alias barked, muzzled the piglet beneath its jaw. “Yeah, right. A talking pig. Next time you confab it I want to see you blab it.” Something tossed the fuel filters out her window into the median a couple more miles down the road, than glanced at our corpulent friend just as he said:
“Penny!” Strange immediately called with her CB. “You’re not going to believe this!”
“I just might. Kia’s flown us to some pretty improbable places. How’s that pig?” Penny gave us a wink, perched on a wood branch suspended over the passenger seat.
“Listen!” Strange held the microphone to Cuddly’s mouth. “Say something! . . Go ahead! . . Talk! . . He doesn’t want to now!”
“Doesn’t want to what? Who’s Cuddly?”
“I’ll explain when we scale. Next exit.”
After weighing at an Amarillo truck stop Old Penny and Something parked. Penny tried to reach his broker on his cell phone: Ring! Ring! Ring! Ring! Meanwhile Something called the shipper: Ring! Ring! Ring! Ring!
“No answer,” each said in unison, Strange from the driver’s seat, Penny sitting on the bunk in her sleeper as the score began to play Crazy by Patsy Cline.
“This pig won’t say nothin’ either,” Strange remarked. “He’s been quiet all this time.” Cuddly gave her a look of seeming pleased, wearing Something’s sunglasses. It was, indeed, a bright day in the Panhandle. “Maybe it’s you he doesn’t trust,” Something grinned at Penny.
“Maybe you hair needs mussed,” reaching forward with a smile to dishevel Something’s hair.
Something looked the other way out her window, thinking, “Penny’s touch has always felt like poetry. But that’ a guarantee of chaos and calamity,” remembering two previous lovers.
Penny likewise turned his head the other way, keeping to himself, “It sends a heart leapin’ just to gaze at her sleepin’. But that’s the verbosity of arbitrary whimsy making for illusions vain and flimsy,” likewise recalling disappointments.
“Did you hear that, Penny?” Something asked, waking from the past.
“Yeah. ‘Rouse’. What does he mean?”
“If that’s what you mean you can forget it,” thought Strange, having just been considering Penny.
“If that’s what you mean,” Old Penny regarded to himself, “my mind’s made up and it’s not changing.”
“You know, I’ve been thinking . . .” both spoke at once.
“Sorry,” Something chuckled. “Go ahead. Please.”
“No way would those two be doing road without spare filters.”
“That’s what I was going to say. We’re too easy to find here.”
“Maybe Cuddly knows that, too. Let’s move on before they see us.”
“Do you see what I see?” Makin’ soon sang to the Punc on her walkie-talkie. “They just pulled onto the interstate, half a mile ahead.”
“And we’re off. Comin’ around you, Makin’,” the Punc returned, likewise walkie-talkie. “Once we’re out of town we’ll make this short and sweet.”
“Well, I’ll be so smart I can’t but be misunderstood,” said Old Penny to himself as he looked in his mirror. He called Something Strange via walkie-talkie. “We’ve got company.”
“If we can see them they can see us,” Something looking in her mirror.
“We’re almost out of town. Hammer it. I’ll top at a hundred and forty. If they’re still behind us you just keep going.”
“No way. Bring Pete around in front or I’ll stop.”
“And we’re off,” Penny thought aloud as he stepped on it to the tune of Brian Setzer’s Ignition. He knew Strange meant what she said. Though both had fifteen gears his truck had better torque at sixty-five than her Kenworth, so she didn’t have to lift the pedal to let him by. But once they reached eighty-five she had to back off a little.
“They’ve seen us,” the Punc informed Makin’. “They’re pulling ahead.”
“No worry. We’ve got toilet paper. They’ve got potatoes in heavy reefers. I was hungry ‘cause I could smell ‘em.”
The Punc brought his CB mike to his mouth, “Catching you, which we will, means no lenience. So flee while you can at your convenience. You’re gonna lose this chase, chumps.” With that he put it to the anvil.
“At least our potatoes are on the floor,“ Strange walkied Old Penny.
“Yeah. That’s why I chose the highway instead of the big road. They might gain on the stretches but we’ll lose ‘em around the curves.” Which is what occurred for the next seventy miles, risky for needing to slow down from well into three digits for curves marked at fifty-five. Makin’ might have been able to catch up in her Western Star. But the Punc’s heavily armored Freightshaker pulled worse, all else equal, than Penny’s fine-tuned little Pete.
Having never been patient at anything for more than half an hour, the Punc walkied his crime partner: “Pull up in front of them on the next straightaway and slow them down. Show those jokers why you’re called Makin’ Wind.”
Makin’ came out of a curve at sixty, shifted up to her last gear at eighty-five, undid the shoulder straps of her overalls and jiggled them down to her knees. She wriggled the same with her monstrous panty that a cow once wore with debonair ease. Lifting her mutton, she pushed a button which projected a tube where sat her perfumer. Then Makin’ paused, in wondrous anticipation of what would put her in better humor. What to some is deviation to others is paradise: when Makin’ lowered her bum on that tube she entered a zone so very nice that the purpose of her action was forgot in distraction.
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