*Bites cork from bottle and spits it across the porch*
I rebuilt this place.
* Takes a good long swig of whiskey*
I thought I could mend my ways. I thought I could settle down and live off the land. Yeah, a lean mean rootin’ tootin’ fella like me, trading potatoes and tomatoes for sugar and spice. All with one aim in mind.
*Wipes sleeve across mouth.*
Hell, I was even gonna fix the barn, but it ain’t gonna happen now. Ain’t nothing in there but dusty chairs anyhow. Only a week ago I was telling Nameless about the plans I had. Still trying to convince myself, I guess. Well, Nameless ain’t dumb. He just looked at me with those big sorrowful eyes of his and shamed me into silence. There’s no fooling a dog that looks into your soul and knows what you’re feeling inside. There just ain’t.
*Takes another swig of whiskey*
I never questioned my purpose in life before. Never had call to. But lately…
*Rolls a cigarette, flips it in the air, catches it in mouth.*
Win some; lose some, that’s how it goes. You shrug it off and walk away. Telling you the Mayhew story did me a power of good. When truth hits you in the eye and the wayward wind calls, there’s no turning back. There’s a big world out there, a world where a man can come and go, do what he wants and answer to no one. It’s my world, it’s where I belong.
I was down by the creek this morning. Just clearing my mind, that’s all. I’d been there a while when I heard something snuffling in the grass. It was Nameless. Can you believe that? After four years he finally shows me he can track. I’m glad he came, it’s been a long time since me and him walked together. There’s hope for that dog yet.
Housty and me took a walk this afternoon, to the old spot by the river. Ain’t right to say what we talked about. We just said our piece, made our peace and revisited good times. Hell, didn’t we just.
*Picks short curly hair from mouth*
All good things come to an end sometime. If The Porch was any good at all, it was down to you folks. We sure had a lot of fun. I ain’t gonna make a speech about it. I’ll just leave you this little keepsake…
*Gulps down the rest of the whiskey*
I’ve done some jawing this past four years. Too much, some might say, and I wouldn’t argue with that. If you only remember one thing I ever told you, remember what I said about stars. Just look for number 123 in the sidebar. It’s the truest thing I ever said.
Well, it’s time I was on my way. Don’t anybody fret about me. I’ll be out there somewhere just rolling my own cigarettes, following my own star and kicking up a ruckus. So long, folks.