Chapter 24

The sound: Ted Nugent – Strangle Hold, Jimi Hendrix – Purple Haze, Jefferson Airplane – Someone to Love, Canned Heat – Going Up the Country, Cream – Sunshine of Your Love, Janis Joplin – Piece of My Heart, Blood Sweat and Tears – Spinning Wheel, Iron Butterfly – Soul Experience

Robert sits quietly and watches the antics of his friends. There’s a fair amount of chest beating and story telling going on and I think to myself “these guys are tying real hard to impress someone.” and I reach for my beer.

I take one long pull just as I think that “maybe the person they’re trying to impress is me?!?” I snort and end up having a very undignified coughing fit as a direct result of sucking a half a pint of brew down the wrong pipe.

I cough till I almost vomit and have tears and mascara running down my face while someone pounds my back. When I finally get my breath I look up to Boomer, BarnYard and Rosie standing around my chair looking concerned. I try to wipe my face to find that Robert has my hand.

“Ok?” he inquires “done?”

I’m embarrassed but agree and he smiles and pats my hand. “Time for the follies” he replies.

“Follies?” I think, “As in cancan dancers? WTF? Just where the fuck did I land?”

Robert leans forward in his chair and quietly announces “Let the games begin!” and from all points around the property I hear him answered by a multitude of male voices in the affirmative along with a collective feminine sigh, a sort of collective male “yeehaw!” closely followed by something female and sad.

“Hmmmmm?” I think and again “WTF? How did they hear him” and then I realize that although these people have been partying hearty they have all been surreptitiously watching Robert. Watching almost as if waiting for an announcement and apparently now they’ve received the notice they’d desired.

All around me I begin to see men stepping and/or staggering away from the fire, many of them shrugging into their jackets, many of them pulling on their gloves. Several stop beside women and pull them up to be kissed and I hear the fearful murmur of women’s voices as they admonish or beg their men to “be safe – please”.

I turn and look questioningly at Rosie just as Robert levers himself out of the chair beside me. He bends to pick up his 5th of Jack Daniels and turns to look at me…”back in a flash Baby” he drawls and walks away from the fire towards the race track taking a long pull on the bottle.

“Maybe they’re gonna race?” I think as I hear the unmistaken sound of motorcycle engines roaring to life.

“Oh shit” I hear Rosie mutter and as Boomer and BarnYard race for the garage I turn to her questioningly.

“Baby” she says as both boys exit from the garage wearing shoulder holsters and carrying multiple boxes of what looks like bullets. “You just sit tight…no matter what happens don’t you leave that chair” she says.

I glance up again to see Boomer carrying a hand gun that looks for all intents and purposes like one of those long pistols John Wayne might wear on his hip.

I turn to Rosie again and see that she’s left. She strides into the garage to emerge moments later with a large red duffel bag and as she walks past the light towards the race track I see a big white cross on the side of it.

“That is the grand daddy of all First Aid kits” I think to myself as I watch Robert reach the large flat top boulder in the center of the racetrack and then settle himself on what looks to be a shorter version of a swiveling bar stool sitting on top of the rock. Boomer and BarnYard arrive and position themselves on either side of the rock as he leans over and sets his bottle down.

“Well that’s just odd” I think and turn my head to the fire. From all around the farm bikes are heading towards the track but I’m puzzled as there’s little or no light and no one has their headlamps on.

I take a pull on my beer I look back to Robert and the rock in time to see Boomer reach up and hand Robert something.

“My god…he’s giving Robert that great big gun!”

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