Friday, October 10, 2008

Gone Postal - A Novel - Chapter 4

Rosie’s was a bad luck hardscrabble survivor’s story. Born to immigrant parents her mother died when she was young leaving her and her brother to a father who went where the work was. Left with one aunt after another Rosie drifted away from her brother, or vice versa, so to speak. He hooked up with some speed freaks and last she heard was running a meth lab up around Eatonville.

One day Rosie took a long look at the people who were putting her up and putting up with her, decided she couldn’t link them back to any blood relative she could remember and thought, “'Shit, none of us wants to be together.' So the next morning I just packed my stuff and left.”

Not even a note.

She offered few details about the days, weeks, months, years that went by before she met Buck and his pawn shop. If she didn’t want to tell me I didn’t want to ask, but you must be pretty bad off when something resembling indentured servitude to an old mangy pawn broker reeks of salvation.

Buck wasn’t bad, she was always quick to add whenever questionable stories arose. He fed her and got her working, taught her the “trade” for what that was worth. While not Vassar it earned her a living. But Buck was a beat down fuck-up who couldn’t pass a poker game to save his life, and ultimately one cost him it.

A bad debt he couldn’t pay, to people too mean, sadistic, and impatient to offer him financing. Instead they just settled for the sick pleasure of a good old fashioned drubbing. Damn near killed him, yet somehow the battered bugger made it back to his shop where Rosie, over weeks and weeks, nursed him to the nearest thing to health a guy like him was likely to see again.

A spasm shook him one day and in a blink he was gone. Just as he’d gotten back up on his feet and could catch a glimpse of a tolerable future he was smacked back down and crushed to dust.

No funeral, no family; just Rosie.

And that’s how Rosie came to be behind the cage that fateful day I wandered in.

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