Gary stammered to search for the words. “Well, I want some advice.”
“Well,” Pot said. “Ya come to the right place. I spent a lifetime thinking up advice. I got so much advice I don’t have room for a house or car. I got it all stored away and it’s about time I started to give it away. So what’s bothering ya, boy?”
“You got to promise not to tell another soul,” Gary said.
“It doesn’t look like people are lined up down the tracks looking for me to tell ‘em something,” Pot said stretching his neck as if looking down the railroad tracks. “There was this guy last year who wanted to know how to get to Detroit. I told him to follow the tracks.”
“Okay,” Gary said. “There’s this hag in town. She’s out after me.”
“What did ya do to her?” Pot said.
“Nothing,” Gary said.
“Nothing,” Pot said, “You had to do something.”
“I followed her home one night,” Gary said, “just to see where she lived. There’s no harm in that, is there?”
“No,” Pot said. “At least the way you see it, but how do ya think she sees it?”
“I don’t know,” Gary said. “What could I do to a hag?”
“Have ya ever heard of the Salem Witchcraft Trials,” Pot said.
“A little,” Gary said.
“Well there ya go,” Pot said. “I bet that hag of yours knows all about them. It starts with kids like you following them and stories start. The next thing ya know they’re being bothered and blamed for everything.”
“But I just wanted to see where she lived,” Gary said, “to see if she really is a hag.”
“What do ya think now?” Pot said.
“I’ve been told not to believe in those things,” Gary said. “But there are things I can’t explain.”
“Like what?” Pot said.
“She shows up all the time,” Gary said. “One day I was in the store on the other side of town from her and she comes in. She showed up at the park. I see her around me all the time. She’s out to get me. She’s killed before and she’ll do it again.”
“So,” Pot said. “How am I supposed to help ya?”