The Sixth Man – Episode 44

th9UX4XNG1Shovels and Guns

After a night’s rest in a motel Wilson began a long drive on a two lane highway through never-ending flat farm country. He passed through small towns with hardly a breath of life remaining in them.

It was peaceful and bucolic. There were times has body and mind slumped into a tranquil state as if this is where he could find rest and solace. Thoughts wandered and escaped into the open blue skies above, some being captured by clouds, and perhaps in time as the rain descends those thoughts may come back to him someday and they will nurture old thoughts from the soil of despair.

The car lost power and coasted to a stop. Wilson looked at the gas gage. “Empty,” he said. “That’s what the little red light was trying to tell me.”

He got out, slung on his coat, and started to walk. He looked into the western sky. “Winter is coming,” he thought. “It’s not cold enough to snow. A cold rain is worse than a snow.”

He scanned the four horizons. No houses or structures of any sort were in sight. ‘Someone will come along soon,’ he thought, ‘I hope.’

He walked for an hour without a car driving by. He came upon a mailbox next to a dirt lane that led to the east. It was straight and lined with barbed wire and stick fence posts. It rose over a hump in the landscape and disappeared on the other side.

Wilson turned down the lane hoping he would find a farm house beyond the rise. ‘They’re farmers,’ he thought. ‘They’ll have gas. I’ll barrow a can or maybe they can give me a lift to the next town.’

He stood on the raise and followed the lane with his eyes. A half mile away rested a two-story white farm house, a barn, an equipment shed, and silo. As he got closer he saw a large red gas tank. “I’m in luck, now all I have to do is get the tank and my car together.”

Wilson walked to the back door of the house and knocked several times. He called out and no one answered. He walked to the barn and opened the door and looked inside. “Hello, hello, anybody here!” He heard only chirps and flutters of birds.

Wilson backed away from the door and turned around. He jolted. Ten paces away stood a man in his mid twenties holding a rifle on him. He was dressed in black. His hair was died black. He had black lipstick and eyeliner.

“I ran out of gas on the highway,” Wilson said calmly. “I just need to call someone or I can buy a can of gas from you.”

“I’m gonna kill ya, man,” he said. “Grab the shovel inside the door.”

“What am I going to do,” Wilson said, “Dig my own grave?”

“Yours and the grave of the other two,” he said.

“You killed two other people?” Wilson said.

He smiled. “I kind of hacked them up a little,” he said. “I’m a little tired from that so I’ll just give you a bullet to the head. So get the shovel and we’ll walk down to the creek bed.”

Wilson reached inside the door and grabbed. “You’re pretty stupid, slick,” Wilson said. “I have no incentive to do anything but stand here and let you shoot me. Dig yourself you freak.” Wilson tossed the shovel at him and dashed inside the barn.


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