The Property of Lee Harrison Peeters Chapter Nine: Crossroads

22 01 2010

The Property of Lee Harrison Peeters

Chapter Nine: Crossroads

The stranger rides along an empty road. The trees on either side now barren reach out of the snow toward the sky. In places the snow melts and gurgles  under the snow. When the stranger reaches the top of the hill, he takes out a long. In the distance, he sees four riders. Moving along a road toward a crossroads. With the road he is on. There is no mistaking the giant on his horse with his feet almost dragging along the ground. And his three scruffy friends.

The stranger takes out his pipe and waits.

Later that day the stranger arrives in a small village. There is a blacksmith and a small hotel. The stranger beds his horses down at the barn. Then he enters the hotel with his dog. The owner is a small man with wire glasses and a large face, beaming with good will. His cheeks are so red they seem to shine. Perhaps the result of too much alcohol. The  hotel owner’s name is Thomas Montgomery.

Montgomery looking at dog: “That’s a fine looking animal.”

The stranger grins, reaching down to pet the top of the dog’s head.

The stranger: “I’m going to need a room.”

Montgomery nods: “Yes, sir.”

The stranger: “And a bath. A hot bath.”

Montgomery: “That will be extra, sir. My wife will run the bath. And scrub your back.”

The stranger smiles.

The owner looks offended.

Montgomery: “Eunice ain’t no whore. Been blind since childhood.”

Stranger: “I didn’t mean no offence.”