I don’t talk about my crew mates much. We came together to do a job, er I guess a bunch of jobs and we get paid. I’d like to think that we is all, each of us an expert in our field, as they say on the vids. Roark knows his way around just about any gun. The Doc, well, she’s a wonder with the meds. That Mags, shit can she fly. Prudence is one of those born generals. You know — the kind that looks at the battle field and knows in her gut what to do. Miss V, of course, she’s a born leader. Just walks through life knowin that everyone is just waiting to hear her orders.
But that Lu. She’s a puzzle. She can sit and have tea with a group of cult members and not blink an eye. She can lift an engine block and cradle it like a baby. She doesn’t talk much about her people. I know she’s very religious and I love to hear her stories. I swear she’s got a few of them mixed up, though.
I never had much truck with Jesus before. My Ma tried to give us a good understanding of the popular religion, but since she wasn’t a believer herself, well it was a mite limited.
She tells this story about how Jesus converted a bunch people with the miracle of the Dogs Playing Poker. She does have a picture of it in her bunk. So maybe it is true. I do love the picture.
She has one she picked up when we were last in the Core. She says it is a picture of Jesus in his last incarnation, some hundreds of years ago.
What I love about Lu is that she jumps in on any job with both hands and both feet. She lends a hand and her strong back to whatever project I got going on. Who knew that when we landed on that dust bowl of a planet with that chunk of comet, that we’d leave with such a treasure as our Lu?
I stood there, with my hands gripping the lip of the oak wine barrel. My eyes fixed on the cleverly hidden button. “Maggie, that button calls to me something powerful! I want to push it. I want to, Maggie.”
“You know what Brigid says about the cargo, Swei. You no touchey the cargo!” I stayed silent.
Maggie sighed loudly and walked over to me. “Let me see this button of yours!”
I pointed to the knot hole just below the lip of the barrel. “See how the lines meet and diverge? That ain’t the way wood grain should lay. Ain’t natural like for it to be that way. That was when I knew. Well, I never trusted that Sellers feller. He was a little…. moist for my taste.”
Maggie snorted. I went on, encouraged. “Clammy old handshake, sweaty brow. And the way he went on and on about how that there was our barrel to drink……” My voice trailed off. “What if there’s bodies in here? Huh, Maggie? Bodies.”
“Oh for Pete’s sake, Swei!” Maggie reached past me and pressed the button.
But I’m ahead of my self in the story, ain’t I? We had a good little haul from the scrapyard. We haven’t found a buyer for that little specimen slide from the locked cage, but otherwise we unloaded all the salvage we gathered. With the money we were able to have a serious celebration of our victory over the Reavers. Miss V was careful to make sure we didn’t blow all of our money on whiskey and w00ting. “I’m going to put some of the earnings into a no-load index fund for you, Swei.” I’m pretty sure that’s what she said. My hearin ain’t so good.
Soon enough we’re off to another job. Greenleaf is a mite of a planet known for its medicinals. Miss V wanted to drop off and pick up and promised us a few more days of relaxing. The main town is like a huge market and the main commodity, as they say, is wine. I like me some wine, so I was happy to help get us there.
The only place to stay is the Sour Grape. A nice enough place, I think. Waitresses were quick enough with the food, but a mite hard to understand. What with the piano player pounding on the keys and the folks chattering on with each other, well a soul can’t hardly hear herself think, much less understand what some old waitress gal is yellin in your ear. I got the special number 2. That’s what Roark told me.Older Posts »