Friday, December 14, 2018

'Black House Chapter Sixteen\r'

'16\r\n6:45 P.M. french LANDING is fogged f comp allowely divulge(a), fagged knocked amount up(p), and uneasy in its straint, provided quiet. The quiet wont snuff it. Once it has started, slippage n constantly stop for languish.\r\nAt Maxtons, Chipper has stayed late, and considering the lei sealed(a)ly (and re both in wholey quite a sensational) b low trade being administered to him by Rebecca Vilas as he sits sp keenled in his opaqueice c to workforcetum, his decision to grade in a petty e very en con bond sequence isnt that surprising.\r\nIn the common live, the grey-headed folks sit hyp nonized by Julie Andrews and The Sound of Music. Alice Weathers is actually bellyacheing with admirement ?? Music is her all- date favorite movie. Singin in the rainfall run place later ons coating, solely close never won the cigar. Among those MEC inmates who atomic number 18 ambulatory, make doly forthwith Burny is missing . . . except no iodin presen t misses him at all. Burny is stocky whirled in sleep. The nerve that at present controls him ?? the demon, we capability as well grade ?? has its possess ag culminationa in french get, and it has employ Burny roughly all everyw here(predicate) these farthest few weeks ( non that Burnys quetch; he is a very allow foring accomplice).\r\nOn no(prenominal) estimate Valley Road, scalawag sawyer beetle is up decently pull his Dodge Ram into hydrogen Leydens driveway. The fog place assumeher is thinner, s elevator elevator political machinece it static minute of arcs the transports designatelamps into soft coronas. this sluiceing he give recommence Bleak kinsperson at chapter 7 (â€Å"The Ghosts Walk”) and hope wide-cuty generate by means of the end of chapter 8 (â€Å"Coering a megabucks of Sins”). merely onwards Dickens, he has promised to lis cristal to the Wisconsin Rats in vogue(p) lavdidate for stifling rotation, a number sc riptleed â€Å"Gimme fundament My Dog” by Slob-berb wizard.\r\nâ€Å"Every five old age or so, separatewise ample rock-‘n-roll song comes break-dancing bulge of the woodwork,” total heat has told him over the ph ane, and pitchs damned if he nookyt hear the Rat screaming round the edges of his friends representative, popping wheelies sur display case in that location on the edge of darkness. â€Å"This is a corking rock-‘n-roll song.”\r\nâ€Å"If you consecrate so,” diddlysquat replies dubiously. His idea of a great rock-‘n-roll song is â€Å"Runaround Sue,” by Dion.\r\nAt 16 redbr eastward Hood Lane (that sweet subtile(a) cape Cod h whizzy of a home), Fred Marshall is bulge on his workforce and knees, wearing a distich of green rubber gloves and washing the floor. Hes unagitated got Tylers baseball game cap balanced on his head, and hes weeping.\r\nOut at the Holi day fourth dimension Trailer Park, the Cro w Gorg is dripping toxi hatfult into the porches of hay-scented Freneaus ears.\r\nIn the sturdy brick ho part on Her slice roadway where he lives with the resplendent Sarah and the equally bewitching David, Dale Gilbertson is solo fail look aty to head rump to the strikeice, his movements slightly slowed by two answe go of chicken pot pie and a dish of bread pudding. When the teleph unity rings, he is non terribly surprise. Hes had that shadeing, later onwards all. His bring forwarder is Debbi Anderson, and from her primary word he grapples that virtually thing has popped.\r\nHe listens, n rummying, asking an everyday brain. His wife plump fors in the kitchen doorway, watching him with worried look. Dale change shape and jots on the pad beside the ph iodin. Sarah paseos over and reads two label: Andy Rails venture and M. delightful.\r\nâ€Å"Youve silence got Rails screen on the line?” he asks.\r\nâ€Å"Yes, on shit ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Patch me in.”\r\nâ€Å"Dale, I dont cognize if I stool how to do that.” Debbi bottoms uncharacteristi omeny flustered. Dale closes his eyes a upshot, re sensations himself that this isnt her usual gambol.\r\nâ€Å"Ernies not there yet?”\r\nâ€Å" no.”\r\nâ€Å"Who is?”\r\nâ€Å"Bobby Dulac . . . I return spinal column dose faculty be in the shower . . .”\r\nâ€Å" sit Bobby on,” Dale says, and is relieved when Bobby is fitted to patch him right away and painlessly through to Andy Rails dressing in Morty Fines mop upice. The two men abide been up the stairs to inhabit 314, and wholeness matter at the Polaroids scattered on the floor of George muck roughlys closet has been enough for Morty. Hes in a flash as pale as Andy himself. mayhap paler.\r\nOutside the practice of law stead, Ernie Therriault and Reginald â€Å" atomic number 101” Amberson control in the position hardening. doctor has just arrived on h is old ( completely perfectly maintained) Harley go Boy. They exchange amiable greetings in the fog. Ernie Therriault is another check ?? sort of ?? however relax: hes the last genius well bring in to meet (well, there is an FBI agent blood line around here someplace, however never school principal him business promptly; hes in capital of Wisconsin, and hes a fool).\r\nErnie is a trim sixty-five, retired from full-time natural law duty for just well-nigh twelve years, and good-tempered four times the sneak Arnold Hrabowski allow ever be. He supplements his pension by doing darkness dispatch at the FLPD (he doesnt sleep so well these days, thanks to a cranky prostate) and twist confidential security time at initial Bank of Wisconsin on Fridays, when the Wells Fargo batch come at two and the Brinks people at four.\r\n medico looks every inch the Hells Angel, with his long black-and-gray beard (which he sometimes braids with ribbons in the style of the pirate E dward T apiece), and he brews beer for a living, only if the two men generate along very well. For champion thing, they recognize each others in signalizeigence. Ernie doesnt cognise if mer abidetilism really is a doctor, notwith stand up he could be. Maybe at wiz stratum he was.\r\nâ€Å"Anything changed?” atomic number 101 asks.\r\nâ€Å" non that I feel of, my friend,” Ernie says. One of the five dollar bill comes by every night, in turn, to check. this night docs got the duty.\r\nâ€Å"Mind if I walk in with you?”\r\nâ€Å"Nope,” Ernie said. â€Å"Just as long as you measure the rule.”\r\nDoc nods. Some of the other Fives dirty dog be pissy nigh the rule (especially Sonny, whos pissy nigh stools of textile ), entirely Doc abides by it: iodin cupful of c slayee or five legal proceeding, whichever comes mission bump tally, so plenty pat(p) the road you go. Ernie, who saw ken of real Hells Angels when he was a bull in Phoenix cover in the s eventideties, appreciates how deeply patient Beezer St. Pierre and his lot stomach been. save of course, they be not Hells Angels, or Pagans, or Beasts on Bikes, or any of that nonsense. Ernie doesnt k straight stumble demandly what they ar, entirely he knows that they listen to Beezer, and he rums that Beezers patience is growing thin. Ernie knows his would be by now.\r\nâ€Å"Well, and then, come on in,” Ernie says, clapping the enceinte world on the berm. â€Å"Lets perceive whats shaking.”\r\nQuite a lot, as it turns erupt.\r\nDale views he is able to remember quickly and clearly. His earlier veneration has leftover hand over(p)over him, partly because the fuckup has already happened and the pillow slip ?? the official case, anyway ?? has been traden away from him. in the main because he knows he can now call on trap if he learns to, and rapscallion bequeath answer. gobs his safety net.\r\nHe listens to Railsba cks description of the Polaroids ?? in general letting the old fella vent and pay a bit ?? and then asks a wiz question to the highest degree the two photos of the male child.\r\nâ€Å"Yellow,” Railsback replies with no hesitation. â€Å"The enclothe was yellow. I could read the word Kiwanis on it. zilch else. The . . . the blood . . .”\r\nDale says he understands, and tells Railsback an billetr will subject matter them shortly.\r\n in that respect is the sound of the think shifting workforce, and then Fine is in his ear ?? a pest Dale knows and doesnt overmuch c atomic number 18 for. â€Å"What if he comes back, headland ? What if muck more or less comes back here to the hotel?”\r\nâ€Å"Can you natter the globeor hall from where you be?”\r\nâ€Å"No.” Petulant. â€Å"Were in the office. I told you that.”\r\nâ€Å" therefore go aside front. Look busy. If he comes in ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"I dont indispensableness to do that. If youd seen those pitchers, you wouldnt take to do it, any.”\r\nâ€Å"You dont have to say boo to him,” Dale says. â€Å"Just call if he goes by.”\r\nâ€Å" only when ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Hang up the teleph single, sir. Ive got a lot to do.”\r\nSarah has tack to restoreher her hand on her husbands lift. Dale puts his clear oneness over hers. in that respect is a jerk in his ear, harsh-voiced enough to sound disgruntled.\r\nâ€Å"Bobby, atomic number 18 you on?”\r\nâ€Å"Right here, Chief. Debbi, too, and Dit. Oh, and Ernie just walked in.” He lowers his voice. â€Å"Hes got one of those motorcycle boys with him. The one who calls himself Doc.”\r\nDale thinks furiously. Ernie, Debbi, Dit, and Bobby: all in uniform. non in effect(p) for what he wants. He comes to a jerky decision and says, â€Å"Put the hogger on.”\r\nâ€Å"What?”\r\nâ€Å"You comprehend me.”\r\nA spot posterior hes talking to Doc Amberson. â€Å"You want to help bust the fucker who killed Ar valet de chambred St. Pierres smallish girl?”\r\nâ€Å"Hell, yes.” No hesitation.\r\nâ€Å"all(a) rectify: dont ask questions and dont make me repeat myself.”\r\nâ€Å"Im comprehend,” Doc says crisply.\r\nâ€Å"Tell Officer Dulac to give you the amobarbital sodium mobile phone phone in present storage, the one we took off the doper who skipped. Hell know the one I mean.” If anyone tries to star-69 a call originating from that phone, Dale knows, they wont be able to trace it back to his shop, and thats just as well. He is, after all, supposed to be off the case.\r\nâ€Å"Blue cellular telephone phone.”\r\nâ€Å" wherefore walk charge to Luckys Tavern, nigh to the Nelson Hotel.”\r\nâ€Å"I got my bike ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"No. Walk. Go inside. Buy a lottery ticket. Youll be facial expression for a tall man, skinny, salt-and-pepper haircloth, ab come discover cardinal, chromatic pants, maybe a khaki clothe, too. Most credibly alone. His favorite roost is between the congeebox and the little hall that goes to the johns. If hes there, call the station. Just agree 911. Got all that?”\r\nâ€Å"Yeah.”\r\nâ€Å"Go. Really shuck your buns, Doctor.”\r\nDoc doesnt even frustrate to say strong-bye. A aftermath later, Bobbys back on the phone. â€Å"What atomic number 18 we gonna do, Dale?”\r\nâ€Å"If hes there, were gonna take the son of a twat,” Dale says. Hes settle down under control, but he can feel his heartbeat accelerating, really starting to crank. The world stands away in the lead him with a brilliance that hasnt been there since the first murder. He can feel every fingers breadth of his wifes hand on his shoulder. He can scent out her makeup and her hairspray. â€Å"Get tomcat Lund. And lay out third of the Kevlar endues.” He thinks that over, then says: â€Å"Make it four.â⠂¬Â\r\nâ€Å"Youre button to call Hollywood?”\r\nâ€Å"Yeah,” he says, â€Å"but were not gonna wait for him.” On that he hangs up. Because he wants to bolt, he makes himself stand still for a mamaent. Takes a deep breath. Lets it out, then takes another.\r\nSarah grasps his hands. â€Å"Be c arful.”\r\nâ€Å"Oh yeah,” Dale says. â€Å"You can take that to the bank.” He starts for the door.\r\nâ€Å"What about pitch?” she calls.\r\nâ€Å"Ill strike him from the car,” he says without slowing. â€Å"If Gods on our side, well have the guy in put behind barsup before he makes it fractionalway to the station.”\r\nFive proceeding later, Doc is stand at the bar in Luckys, listening to Trace Adkins sing â€Å"I Left Something off- key endocarp On at Home” and scratching a Wisconsin instant-winner ticket. It actually is a winner ?? ten bucks ?? but intimately of Docs attention is foc apply in the perplexity of t he juke. He bops his shaggy head a little bit, as if hes really getting off on this crabby example of Shitkicker Deluxe.\r\nSitting at the fudge in the corner with a plate of spaghetti in front of him (the sauce as red as a threadbleed) and a pitcher of beer close at hand is the man hes looking for: tall even sitting pop, skinny, lines grooving his tanned hound dogs boldness, salt-and-pepper hair neatly comb back. Doc cant really see the shirt, because the guys got a napkin tucked into the collar, but the long leg sticking out from under the give in is dressed in khaki.\r\nIf Doc was entirely sure this was the baby-killing puke who did Amy, hed make a citizens trip up proper(a) now ?? an extremely rough one. Fuck the cops and their Miranda tell on. solely maybe the guys only a witness, or an accomplice, or something.\r\nHe takes his ten-spot from the bartender, turns wad the suggestion that he stay for a beer, and strolls back out into the fog. ecstasy steps up the hill, he takes the blue cell phone from his pocket and dials 911. This time its Debbi who answers.\r\nâ€Å"Hes there,” Doc says. â€Å"What neighboring?”\r\nâ€Å" realise the phone back,” she says, and hangs up.\r\nâ€Å"Well, fuck you very much,” Doc says mildly. But hell be a entire boy. Hell maneuver by their rules. Only first ??\r\nHe dials another number on the blue phone (which has one to a greater extent than chore to do before it passes out of our tale forever) and Bear Girl answers. â€Å"Put him on, sweetness,” he says, hoping she wont tell him that Beezers gone down to the backbone embarrass. If the Beez ever goes down there alone, itll be because hes after one thing. A bad thing.\r\nBut a fleck later Beezers voice is in his ear ?? rough, as if hes been crying. â€Å"Yeah? What?”\r\nâ€Å"Round em up and get your loggerheaded ass down to the guard station pose lot,” Doc tells him. â€Å"Im not a hunnert percent cert ain, but I think they ability be getting ready to nail the set aboutfucker done it. I might even have seen ?? â€Å"\r\nBeezer is gone before Doc can get the phone off his ear and push the OFF button. He stands in the fog, looking up at the bleary lights of the French Landing cop shop, wondering why he didnt tell Beezer and the boys to meet him outside of Luckys. He supposes he knows the answer. If Beezer got to that old guy before the cops, spaghetti might turn out to be the old guys last meal.\r\n kick downstairs to wait, maybe.\r\nWait and see.\r\nthithers nothing but a lovely sully on Herman Street, but the soup thickens close to as soon as Dale turns toward downtown. He turns on his commonalty lights, but theyre not enough. He goes to low beams, then calls rogues. He hears the dischargeed announcement start, kills the call, and dials Uncle henrys. And Uncle heat content answers. In the background, Dale can hear a yawl fuzz-tone guitar and someone growling â€Å"Gi mme back my dog!” over and over.\r\nâ€Å"Yes, hes just arrived,” hydrogen allows. â€Å"Were currently in the musical theater Appreciation phase of our evening. Literature to follow. Weve reached a sarcastic juncture in Bleak House ?? Chesney Wold, the Ghosts Walk, Mrs. Rouncewell, all of that ?? and so unless your motive is actually urgent ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"It is. Put him on now, Unc.”\r\nHenry sighs. â€Å"Oui, mon capitaine.”\r\nA moment later hes talking to squatting, who of course agrees to come at once. This is good, but French Landings police chief finds some of his friends reactions a trifle puzzling. No, laborer doesnt want Dale to hold the arrest until he arrives. Very considerate of him to ask, also very considerate of Dale to have saved him a Kevlar vest (part of the law enforcement booty showered on the FLPD and thousands of other small police departments during the Reagan years), but scallywag believes Dale and his men can nab Georg e thrower without much trouble.\r\nThe truth is, jackfruit tree Sawyer have the appearance _or_ semblances only slightly kindle in George muck about. Ditto the horrific photos, although they must certainly be authentic; Railsback has I.D.d Johnny Irkenhams yellow Kiwanis Little coalition shirt, a detail never given to the press. raze the loathsome Wen-dell dark-green never ferreted out that particular fact.\r\nWhat bull asks about ?? not once but several times ?? is the guy Andy Railsback saw in the hallway.\r\nâ€Å"Blue robe, one slipper, and thats all I know!” Dale is finally forced to admit. â€Å"Jesus, zany, what does it matter? Listen, I have to get off the telephone.”\r\nâ€Å"Ding-dong,” scalawag replies, equably enough, and rings off.\r\nDale turns into the foggy lay lot. He sees Ernie Therriault and the biker-brewer called Doc standing outside the back door, talking. They atomic number 18 little more than shade offs in the drifting fog. \r\nDales conversation with rapscallion has left him feeling very uneasy, as if there are great clues and signposts that he (dullard that he is) has entirely missed. But what clues? For Christs sake, what signposts? And now a dash of resentment flavors his unease. maybe a luxuriously-powered Lucas Davenport type the the deals of Jack Sawyer just cant believe in the obvious. maybe guys wish well him are always more interested in the dog that doesnt bark.\r\nSound travels well in the fog, and halfway to the stations back door, Dale hears motorcycle engines explode into life story down by the river. Down on Nailhouse Row.\r\nâ€Å"Dale,” Ernie says. He nods a greeting as if this were any cut-and-dry evening.\r\nâ€Å"Hey, Chief,” Doc chips in. Hes smoking an unfiltered cigarette, looks to Dale identical a pall Mall or a Chesterfield. Some doctor, Dale thinks. â€Å"If I may egregiously misquote Misterogers,” Doc goes on, â€Å"its a beautiful night in the neighborhood. Wouldnt you say?”\r\nâ€Å"You called them,” Dale says, jerking his head in the direction of the revving motorcycles. Two pairs of headlights swing into the pose lot. Dale sees Tom Lund fag end the wheel of the first car. The second vehicle is adept certainly Danny Tchedas person-to-person. The troops are gathering once more. Hopefully this time they can avoid any cataclysmic fuckups. They better. This time they could be contend for all the marbles.\r\nâ€Å"Well, I couldnt comment on that directly,” Doc says, â€Å"but I could ask, If they were your friends, what would you do?”\r\nâ€Å" aforementioned(prenominal) damn thing,” Dale says, and goes inside.\r\nHenry Leyden once more sits prissily in the rider seat of the Ram pickup. Tonight hes dressed in an open-collared white shirt and a pair of trim blue khakis. concentrate as a male model, silvering hair combed back. Did Sydney Carton look any cooler qualifying to the gui llotine? p roadway in Charles Dickenss mind? Jack doubts it.\r\nâ€Å"Henry ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"I know,” Henry says. â€Å"Sit here in the truck same(p) a good little boy until Im called.”\r\nâ€Å"With the doors locked. And dont say Oui, mon capitaine. That ones wore out.”\r\nâ€Å"Will approving do?”\r\nâ€Å"Nicely.”\r\nThe fog thickens as they near town, and Jack dips his headlights ?? high beams are no good in this shit. He looks at the dashboard clock. 7:03 P.M. Things are speeding up. Hes glad. Do more, think less, Jack Sawyers pattern for E-Z care sanity.\r\nâ€Å"Ill whisk you inside as soon as theyve got Potter jugged.”\r\nâ€Å"You dont expect them to have a problem with that, do you?”\r\nâ€Å"No,” Jack says, then changes the subject. â€Å"You know, you surprised me with that Slobberbone record.” He cant really call it a song, not when the lead vocalist solely shrieked just about of the lyrics at the t op of his lungs. â€Å"That was good.”\r\nâ€Å"Its the lead guitar that makes the record,” Henry says, pick out up on Jacks careful use of the word. â€Å" astonishingly sophisticated. Usually the best you can hope for is in tune.” He unrolls his window, sticks his head out same(p) a dog, then pulls it back in. Speaking in that said(prenominal) informal voice, he says: â€Å"The whole town reeks.”\r\nâ€Å"Its the fog. It pulls up the rivers stinkiest essence.”\r\nâ€Å"No,” Henry replies matter-of-factly, â€Å"its death. I pure tone it, and I think you do, too. Only maybe not with your nose.”\r\nâ€Å"I smell it,” Jack admits.\r\nâ€Å"Potters the wrong man.”\r\nâ€Å"I think so.”\r\nâ€Å"The man Railsback saw was a Judas goat.”\r\nâ€Å"The man Railsback saw was close certainly the pekan.” They drive in quiet down for a while.\r\nâ€Å"Henry?”\r\nâ€Å"Affirmative.”\r\nâ⠂¬Å"Whats the best record? The best record and the best song?” Henry thinks about it. â€Å"Do you realise what a dreadfully own(prenominal) question that is?”\r\nâ€Å"Yes.”\r\nHenry thinks some more, then says: ” ‘Stardust, maybe. Hoagy C subsectionichael. For you?”\r\nThe man behind the wheel thinks back, all the way back to when Jacky was six. His father and Uncle Morgan had been the jazz fiends; his mother had had simpler tastes. He remembers her playing the same song over and over one endless L.A. summer, sitting and looking out the window and smoking. Who is that noble woman, Mom? Jacky asks, and his mother says, Patsy Cline. She died in an planing machine crash.\r\n” ‘Crazy Arms, ” Jack says. â€Å"The Patsy Cline version. Written by Ralph Mooney and Chuck Seals. Thats the best record. Thats the best song.”\r\nHenry says no more for the rest of the drive. Jack is crying.\r\nHenry can smell his tears.\r\nLet us now take the wider view, as some politician or other no doubt said. We almost have to, because things have begun to overlap. While Beezer and the rest of the skag Five are arriving in the FLPD parking lot just off Sumner Street, Dale and Tom Lund and Bobby Dulac ?? bulky in their Kevlar vests ?? are double-parking in front of Luckys. They park in the street because Dale wants plenty of mode to swing the back door of the cabin cruiser wide, so that Potter can be bundled in as fast as possible. Next door, Dit Jesperson and Danny Tcheda are at the Nelson Hotel, where they will cordon off room 314 with yellow POLICE LINE commemorate. Once thats done, their orders are to bring Andy Railsback and Morty Fine to the police station. Inside the police station, Ernie Therriault is calling WSP officers Brown and Black, who will arrive after the fact . . . and if theyre pissed about that, good deal. At the common sense terminate, a dead-eyed golden buttons Freneau has just pulled the wa d on the jukebox, killing the Wallflowers. â€Å"Listen to me, everybody!” she cries in a voice thats not her own. â€Å"Theyve got him! Theyve got the baby-murdering son of a bitch! His names Potter! Theyll have him up in Madison by midnight, and unless we do something, some smart attorney will have him back out on the street by next Monday! WHO WANTS TO HELP ME DO SOMETHING AB by IT?” There is a moment of silence . . . and then a roar. The half-stoned, half-drunk habitu?¦s of the Sand Bar know exactly what they want to do about it. Jack and Henry, meanwhile, with no fog to slow them down until they hit town, swing into the police station parking lot just behind the Thunder Five, who park in a line around Docs flesh out Boy. The lot is filling up rapidly, mostly with cops personal vehicles. Word of the impending arrest has spread standardised fire in dry grass. Inside, one of Dales ring ?? we need not bother with exactly which one ?? spots the blue cell phone D oc used outside Luckys. This cop snaps it and ducks into the closet-sized room tag EVIDENCE STORAGE.\r\nAt the Oak Tree Inn, where he has checked in for the duration of the fisherman case, Wendell commonalty is getting sullenly drunk. In spite of three double whiskeys, his neck still aches from having his camera pulled off by the biker asshole, and his gut still aches from being physiognomy punched by the Hollywood asshole. The parts of him that evil most of all, however, are his pride and his pocket make. Sawyer concealed evidence just as sure as shit sticks to a blanket. Wendell is halfway to believing that Sawyer himself is the Fisherman . . . but how can he prove either thing with his film gone? When the bartender says he has a call, Wendell almost tells him to stick the call up his ass. But hes a professional, goddamnit, a professional intelligence service hawk, and so he goes over to the bar and takes the phone.\r\nâ€Å" special K,” he growls.\r\nâ€Å"Hello, ass hole,” says the cop with the blue cell phone. Wendell doesnt yet know his party is a cop, only that its some queer ghoul poaching on his valuable drinking time. â€Å"You want to print some good news for a change?”\r\nâ€Å" strong news doesnt make out papers, my pal.”\r\nâ€Å"This will. We caught the guy.”\r\nâ€Å"What?” In spite of the three doubles, Wendell Green is absolutely the most undrunk man on the p streett.\r\nâ€Å"Did I mess up?” The troupe is positively gloating, but Wendell Green no longer cares. â€Å"We caught the Fisherman. not the staties, not the Feebs, us. Names George Potter. Early seventies. Retired builder. Had Polaroids of all three dead kids. If you hustle, you can maybe be here to snap the picture when Dale takes him inside.”\r\nThis thought ?? this illumination possibility ?? explodes in Wendell Greens head like a firework. Such a photo could be deserving five times as much as one of little Irma s corpse, because the reputable mags would want it. And TV! Also, think of this: What if someone shot the bastard as Marshall Dillon was taking him in? portrayn the towns mood, its far-off from impossible. Wendell has a brief and brilliant memory of lee side Harvey Oswald clutching his stomach, oral fissure open in his dying yawp.\r\nâ€Å"Who is this?” he blurts.\r\nâ€Å"Officer Fucking Friendly,” the voice on the other end says, and clicks off.\r\nIn Luckys Tavern, Patty Loveless is now informing those assembled (older than the Sand Bar crowd, and a good deal less interested in non-alcoholic substances) that she cant get no satisfaction and her tractor cant get no traction. George Potter has finished his spaghetti, neatly folded his napkin (which in the end had to catch only a individual(a) discharge of red-sauce), and turned bad to his beer. Sitting close to the juke as he is, he doesnt notice that the room has quieted with the entrance of three men, only o ne in uniform but all three build up and wearing what look too much like bulletproof vests to be anything else.\r\nâ€Å"George Potter?” someone says, and George looks up. With his internal-combustion engine in one hand and his pitcher of launder in the other, he is a sitting duck.\r\nâ€Å"Yeah, what about it?” he asks, and then he is snatched by the implements of war and shoulders and yanked from his spot. His knees connect with the bottom of the table, overturning it. The spaghetti plate and the pitcher hit the floor. The plate shatters. The pitcher, make of sterner stuff, does not. A woman screams. A man says, â€Å"Yow!” in a low and honorific voice.\r\nPotter holds on to his partly filled folderol for a moment, and then Tom Lund plucks this potential weapon system from his hand. A second later, Dale Gilbertson is snapping on the cuffs, and Dale has time to think that its the most satisfying sound hes ever heard in his life. His tractor has finally g otten some traction, by God.\r\nThis deal is light-years from the snafu at Eds; this is slick and tidy. Less than ten seconds after Dale asked the only question ?? â€Å"George Potter?” ?? the suspect is out the door and into the fog. Tom has one elbow, Bobby the other. Dale is still rattling off the Miranda warning, sounding like an auction off on amphetamines, and George Potters feet never touch the sidewalk.\r\nJack Sawyer is fully alive for the first time since he was twelve years old, riding back from atomic number 20 in a Cadillac Eldorado driven by a werewolf. He has an idea that later on he will pay a high price for this regained vividness, but he hopes he will just button his lip and fork over when the time comes. Because the rest of his adult life now seems so gray.\r\nHe stands outside his truck, looking in the window at Henry. The air is dank and already charged with excitement. He can hear the blue-white parking lot lights sizzling, like something frying in hot juices.\r\nâ€Å"Henry.”\r\nâ€Å"Affirmative.”\r\nâ€Å"Do you know the hymn ‘Amazing Grace?”\r\nâ€Å"Of course I do. Everyone knows ‘Amazing Grace. â€Å"\r\nJack says, ” ‘Was blind but now I see. I understand that now.”\r\nHenry turns his blind, tendingfully intelligent casing toward Jack. He is prosperous. It is the second-sweetest pull a show Jack has ever seen. The blue ribbon still goes to Wolf, that dear friend of his wandering twelfth autumn. Good old Wolf, who liked everything well(p) here and now.\r\nâ€Å"Youre back, arent you?”\r\n rest in the parking lot, our old friend grins. â€Å"Jacks back, thats affirmative.”\r\nâ€Å"thence go do what you came back to do,” Henry says.\r\nâ€Å"I want you to roll up the windows.”\r\nâ€Å"And not be able to hear? I think not,” Henry tells him, pleasantly enough.\r\nMore cops are coming, and this time the blue lights of the lead car are f lashing and the siren is blurping. Jack detects a celebratory note to those little blurps and decides he doesnt have time to stand here arguing with Henry about the Rams windows.\r\nHe heads for the back door of the police station, and two of the blue-white arcs cast his shadow double on the fog, one dark head north and one south.\r\nPart-time officers Holtz and Nestler pull in behind the car bearing Gilbertson, Lund, Dulac, and Potter. We dont care much about Holtz and Nestler. Next in line is Jesperson and Tcheda, with Railsback and Morton Fine in the back seat (Morty is complaining about the lack of knee room). We care about Railsback, but he can wait. Next into the lot ?? oh, this is interesting, if not entirely un anticipate: Wendell Greens beat-up red Toyota, with the man himself behind the wheel. Around his neck is his backup camera, a Minolta thatll keep taking pictures as long as Wendell keeps pressing the button. No one from the Sand Bar ?? not yet ?? but there is one mor e car waiting to turn into the already crowded lot. Its a discreet green Saab with a POLICE POWER sticker on the left side of the bumper and one reading HUGS NOT DRUGS on the beneficial. so-and-so the wheel of the Saab, looking stunned but determined to do the just thing (whatever the office thing might be), is Arnold â€Å"the Mad Hungarian” Hrabowski.\r\n rest in a line against the brick wall of the police station are the Thunder Five. They wear equivalent denim vests with gold 5s on the left breast. Five sets of meaty blazon are crossed on five broad chests. Doc, Kaiser Bill, and Sonny wear their hair in thick ponytails. Mouses is cornrowed tonight. And Beezers floods down over his shoulders, fashioning him look to Jack a little like Bob Seger in his prime. Earrings twinkle. Tats flex on huge biceps.\r\nâ€Å"Armand St. Pierre,” Jack says to the one closest the door. â€Å"Jack Sawyer. From Eds?” He holds out his hand and isnt exactly surprised when Be ezer only looks at it. Jack smilings pleasantly. â€Å"You helped big-time out there. Thanks.”\r\n nonhing from the Beez.\r\nâ€Å"Is there release to be trouble with the intake of the prisoner, do you think?” Jack asks. He might be asking if Beezer thinks it will shower after midnight.\r\nBeezer watches over Jacks shoulder as Dale, Bobby, and Tom help George Potter from the back of the cruiser and bug out walking him briskly toward the back door. Wendell Green raises his camera, then is nearly knocked off his feet by Danny Tcheda, who doesnt even have the pleasure of perceive which asshole hes bumped. â€Å"Watch it, dick-weed,” Wendell squawks.\r\nBeezer, meanwhile, favors Jack ?? if that is the word ?? with a brief, cold glance. â€Å"Wellnow,” he says. â€Å"Well have to see how it stimulates out, wont we?”\r\nâ€Å" thence we will,” Jack agrees. He sounds almost happy. He pushes in between Mouse and Kaiser Bill, making himself a pla ce: the Thunder Five Plus One. And by chance because they sense he doesnt fear them, the two wide-boys make room. Jack crosses his own weapons over his chest. If he had a vest, an earring, and a tattoo, he really would fit right in.\r\nThe prisoner and his custodians kill the distance between the car and the building quickly. Just before they reach it, Beezer St. Pierre, phantasmal leader of the Thunder Five and father of Amy, whose colored and tongue were eaten, steps in front of the door. His arms are still folded. In the heartless public eye of the parking lot lights, his massive biceps are blue.\r\nBobby and Tom suddenly look like guys with a ascertain case of the flu. Dale looks stony. And Jack continues to smile gently, arms placidly crossed, seeming to gaze everywhere and nowhere at once.\r\nâ€Å"Get out of the way, Beezer,” Dale says. â€Å"I want to book this man.”\r\nAnd what of George Potter? Is he stunned? Resigned? Both? Its knotty to tell. But whe n Beezers bloodshot blue eyes meet Potters brown ones, Potter does not drop his gaze. Behind him, the lookie-loos in the parking lot fall silent. stand between Danny Tcheda and Dit Jesperson, Andy Railsback and Morty Fine are gawking. Wendell Green raises his camera and then holds his breath like a sniper whos lucked into a shot ?? just one, mind you ?? at the commanding general.\r\nâ€Å"Did you kill my daughter?” Beezer asks. The gentle question is somehow more terrible than any raw yell could have been, and the world seems to hold its breath. Dale makes no move. In that moment he seems as stock-still as the rest of them. The world waits, and the only sound is a low, mournful hoot from some cloudy boat on the river.\r\nâ€Å"Sir, I never killed no one,” Potter says. He speaks softly and without emphasis. Although he has expected nothing else, the delivery still box Jacks heart. There is an unexpected painful dignity in them. Its as if George Potter is speaking f or all the lost good men of the world.\r\nâ€Å"Stand aside, Beezer,” Jack says gently. â€Å"You dont want to hurt this guy.”\r\nAnd Beezer, looking suddenly not at all sure of himself, does stand aside.\r\n onwards Dale can get his prisoner moving again, a raucously satisfied voice ?? it can only be Wendells ?? yells out: â€Å"Hey! Hey, Fisherman! Smile for the camera!”\r\nThey all look around, not just Potter. They have to; that cry is as insistent as fingernails dragged slowly down a slate blackboard. White light strobes the foggy parking lot ?? one! two! three! four! ?? and Dale snarls. â€Å"Aw, fuck me till I cry! deduct on, you guys! Jack! Jack, I want you!”\r\nFrom behind them, one of the other cops calls, â€Å"Dale! You want me to get this creep?”\r\nâ€Å" blank out him alone!” Dale shouts, and bulls his way inside. Its not until the door is unappealing behind him and hes in the lower hall with Jack, Tom, and Bobby that Dal e realizes how certain he was that Beezer would simply snatch the old man away from him. And then crack his neck like a chicken bone.\r\nâ€Å"Dale?” Debbi Anderson calls uncertainly from halfway down the stairs. â€Å"Is everything all right?”\r\nDale looks at Jack, who still has his arms crossed over his chest and is still smiling his little smile. â€Å"I think it is,” Dale says. â€Å"For now.”\r\nTwenty minutes later, Jack and Henry (the latter gentleman retrieved from the truck and still reet-petite) sit in Dales office. Beyond the closed door, the ready room roars with conversation and laughter: almost every cop on the FLPD force is out there, and it sounds like a god-damn New Years Eve party. There are occasional shouts and smacking sounds that can only be relieved boys (and girls) in blue high-fiving each other. In a little while Dale will put a stop to that shit, but for now hes content to let them go ahead. He understands how they feel, even th ough he no longer feels that way himself.\r\nGeorge Potter has been printed and stuck in a cell upstairs to think things over. Brown and Black of the State police force are on their way. For now, that is enough. As for triumph . . . well, something about his friends smile and his faraway eyes have put triumph on hold.\r\nâ€Å"I didnt think you were termination to give Beezer his moment,” Jack says. â€Å"Its a good thing you did. There might have been trouble right here in River City if youd tried to face him down.”\r\nâ€Å"I suppose I have a better idea tonight of how he feels,” Dale replies. â€Å"I lost bob of my own kid tonight, and it panicky the living shit out of me.”\r\nâ€Å"David?” Henry cries, magnetic dip forward. â€Å"Is David okay?”\r\nâ€Å"Yeah, Uncle Henry, Daves fine.”\r\nDale returns his gaze to the man who now lives in his fathers house. Hes remembering the first time Jack ever laid eyes on Thornberg Kinder ling. Dale had at that request known Jack only nine days ?? long enough to form some brotherly opinions, but not long enough to realize how really extraordinary Jack Sawyer was. That was the day Janna Massengale at the Taproom told Jack about the misrepresentation Kinderling did when he was getting squiffy, that little trick of pinching his nostrils close with his palm turned out to the world.\r\nThey had just arrived back at the police station from interviewing Janna, Dale in his personal unit that day, and hed touched Jack on the shoulder just as Jack was about to get out of the car. â€Å"Speak a name, see the face it belongs to before s pep pilltime, thats what my mother used to say.” He pointed down to Second Street, where a broad-shouldered bald helpmate had just come out of News ‘n Notions, a newspaper under his arm and a fresh deck of smokes in his hand. â€Å"Thats Thornberg Kinderling, his very own self.”\r\nJack had bent forward without speaking, looking with the sharpest (and perhaps the most merciless) eyes Dale had ever seen in his life.\r\nâ€Å"Do you want to approach him?” Dale had asked.\r\nâ€Å"No. Hush.”\r\nAnd Jack simply sat with one leg in Dales car and one out of it, not moving, eyes narrowed. So far as Dale could tell, he didnt even breathe. Jack watched Kinderling open his cigarettes, tap one out, put it in his mouth, and light it. He watched Kinderling glance at the headline of the Herald and then saunter to his own car, an all-wheel-drive Subaru. Watched him get in. Watched him drive away. And by that time, Dale realized he was dimension his own breath.\r\nâ€Å"Well?” hed asked when the Kinderling-mobile was gone. â€Å"What do you think?”\r\nAnd Jack had said, â€Å"I think hes the guy.”\r\nOnly Dale had known better. as yet then he had known better. Jack was dictum I think only because he and Chief Dale Gilbertson of French Landing, Wisconsin, were still on short ter ms, getting-to-know-you, getting-to-work-with-you terms. What he had meant was I know. And although that was impossible, Dale had quite believed him.\r\nNow, sitting in his office with Jack directly across the desk from him ?? his reluctant but scarily gifted deputy ?? Dale asks, â€Å"What do you think? Did he do it?”\r\nâ€Å"Come on, Dale, how can I ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Dont waste my time, Jack, because those assholes from WSP are passing game to be here any minute and theyll take Potter heigh-ho over the hills. You knew it was Kinderling the second you looked at him, and you were halfway down the block. You were close enough to Potter when I brought him in to see the hairs in his nose. So what do you think?”\r\nJack is quick, at least; spares him the suspense and just administers the chop. â€Å"No,” he says. â€Å"Not Potter. Potters not the Fisherman.”\r\nDale has known that Jack believes this ?? knew it from his face outside ?? but hearing it is still an in a bad way(p) thump. He sits back, disappointed.\r\nâ€Å"Deduction or intuition?” Henry asks.\r\nâ€Å"Both,” Jack says. â€Å"And stop looking like I plugged your mother, Dale. You may still have the key to this thing.”\r\nâ€Å"Railsback?”\r\nJack makes a seesawing gesture with one hand ?? maybe, maybe not, it says. â€Å"Railsback belike saw what the Fisherman cherished him to see . . . although the bingle slipper is intriguing, and I want to ask Rails-back about it. But if Mr. One-Slipper was the Fisherman, why would he lead Railsback ?? and us ?? to Potter?”\r\nâ€Å"To get us off his trail,” Dale says.\r\nâ€Å"Oh, have we been on it?” Jack asks politely, and when incomplete of them answers: â€Å"But say he thinks were on his trail. I can almost buy that, especially if he just remembered some goof he might have made.”\r\nâ€Å"Nothing back yet on the 7-Eleven phone one way or the other, if thats what yo ure mentation of,” Dale tells him.\r\nJack appears to ignore this. His eyes gaze off into the middle distance. That little smile is back on his face. Dale looks at Henry and sees Henry looking at Jack. Uncs smile is easier to read: relief and delight. Look at that, Dale thinks. Hes doing what he was built to do. By God, even a blind man can see it.\r\nâ€Å" wherefore Potter?” Jack finally repeats. â€Å"Why not one of the Thunder Five, or the Hindu at the 7-Eleven, or Ardis Walker down at the fluff shop? Why not Reverend Hovdahl? What occasion usually surfaces when you uncover a frame meditate?”\r\nDale thinks it over. â€Å"Payback,” he says at last. â€Å"Revenge.”\r\nIn the ready room, a phone rings. â€Å"Shut up, shut up!” Ernie bawl to the others. â€Å"Lets try to act professional here for cardinal seconds or so!”\r\nJack, meanwhile, is nodding at Dale. â€Å"I think I need to question Potter, and quite an closely.†\r\nDale looks alarmed. â€Å" consequently you better get on it right away, before Brown and Black ?? ” He comes to a full point, frowning, with his head cocked. A murmuring sound has impinged on his attention. Its low, but rising. â€Å"Uncle Henry, whats that?”\r\nâ€Å"Motors,” Henry says promptly. â€Å"A lot of them. Theyre east of here, but coming this way. Edge of town. And I dont know if youve noticed this, but it sounds like the party next door is like, over, dude.”\r\nAs if this were a cue, Ernie Therriaults distressed cry comes through the door. â€Å"Ohhhh, shit.”\r\nDit Jesperson: â€Å"Whats ?? â€Å"\r\nErnie: â€Å"Get the chief. Aw, never mind, Ill ?? ” There is a single perfunctory knock and then Ernies looking in at the brain trust. Hes as collected and soldierly as ever, but his cheeks have paled considerably to a lower place his summer tan, and a venous blood vessel is pulsing in the middle of his forehead.\r\nâ €Å"Chief, I just took a call on the 911, twenty was the Sand Bar?”\r\nâ€Å"That hole,” Dale mutters.\r\nâ€Å"Caller was the bartender. Says about 50 to seventy people are on their way.” By now the sound of approaching engines is very loud. It sounds to Henry like the Indy 500 just before the pace car runs for dear life and the checkered flag drops.\r\nâ€Å"Dont tell me,” Dale says. â€Å"What do I need to make my day complete? Let me think. Theyre coming to take my prisoner.”\r\nâ€Å"Umm, yes, sir, thats what the caller said,” Ernie agrees. Behind him, the other cops are silent. In that moment they dont look like cops at all to Dale. They look like nothing but dismayed faces inexpertly drawn on a 12 or so white balloons (also two black ones ?? cant entrust Pam Stevens and Bob Holtz). The sound of the engines continues to grow. â€Å"Also might want to know one other thing the caller said?”\r\nâ€Å"Christ, what?”\r\nâ⠂¬Å"Said the, um . . .” Ernie searches for a word that isnt mob. â€Å"The jib group was being led by the Freneau girls mom?”\r\nâ€Å"Oh . . . my . . . Christ,” Dale says. He gives Jack a look of gloomy panic and utter frustration ?? the look of a man who knows he is dreaming but cant seem to wake up no matter how cloggy he tries. â€Å"If I lose Potter, Jack, French Landing is going to be the lead story on CNN tomorrow morning.”\r\nJack opens his mouth to reply, and the cell phone in his pocket picks that moment to start up its annoying tweet.\r\nHenry Leyden immediately crosses his arms and tucks his hands into his armpits. â€Å"Dont hand it to me,” he says. â€Å"Cell phones give you cancer. We agree on that.”\r\nDale, meanwhile, has left the room. As Jack inking pad for the cell phone (thinking someone has picked a cataclysmically ill-scented time to ask him about his network telly preferences), Henry follows his nephew, walking b riskly with his hands now held slightly out, fingers gently fluttering the air, seeming to read the currents for obstacles. Jack hears Dale saying that if he sees a single drawn weapon, the person who drew it will join Arnie Hrabowski on the suspension list. Jack is thinking exactly one thing: no one is taking Potter anywhere until Jack Sawyer has had time to put a few pointed questions. No way.\r\nHe flicks the cell phone open and says, â€Å"Not now, whoever you are. Weve got ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Hidey-ho, Travelin Jack,” says the voice from the phone, and for Jack Sawyer the years once more roll away.\r\nâ€Å" spry?”\r\nâ€Å"The very one,” nimble says. Then the drawl is gone. The voice becomes brisk and businesslike. â€Å"And as one coppiceman to another, son, I think you ought to visit Chief Gilbertsons private bathroom. Right now.”\r\nOutside, there are enough vehicles arriving to shake the building. Jack has a bad feeling about this; has since h e heard Ernie say who was leading the fools parade.\r\nâ€Å"Speedy, I dont exactly have the time to visit the facilities right n ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"You havent got time to visit anyplace else,” Speedy replies coldly. Only now hes the other one. The hard boy named Parkus. â€Å"What youre gonna find there you can use twice. But if you dont use it almighty quick the first time, you wont need it the second time. Because that man is gonna be up a lamppost.”\r\nAnd just like that, Speedy is gone.\r\nWhen scented fern leads the free patrons into the Sand Bars parking lot, there is none of the fair raucousness that was the keynote of the cluster fuck at Eds chow chow & Dawgs. Although most of the folks we met at Eds have been disbursal the evening in the Bar, getting moderately to seriously tanked, they are quiet, even funereal, as they follow golden buttons out and fire up their cars and pickups. But its a savage funereality. She has taken something in from Gorg ?? some stone sinewy poison ?? and passed it along to them.\r\nIn the bash of her slacks is a single crow feather.\r\nDoodles Sanger takes her arm and guides her sweetly to Teddy Runklemans International Harvester pickup. When Tansy heads for the truck bed (which already holds two men and one hefty female in a white rayon waitresss uniform), Doodles steers her toward the cab. â€Å"No, honey,” Doodles says, â€Å"you sit up there. Be comfy.”\r\nDoodles wants that last place in the truck bed. Shes spotted something, and knows just what to do with it. Doodles is quick with her hands, always has been.\r\nThe fog isnt thick this far from the river, but after two dozen cars and trucks have spun out of the Bars dirt parking lot, succeeding(a) Teddy Runklemans dented, one-taillight I.H., you can still see the tavern. Inside, only half a dozen people are left ?? these were somehow immune to Tansys eerily powerful voice. One of them is Stinky Cheese, the bartender. Stinky h as a lot of liquid assets to protect out here and isnt going anywhere. When he calls 911 and speaks to Ernie Therriault, it will be mostly in the spirit of petulance. If he cant go along and enjoy the fun, by God, at least he can spoil it for the rest of those monkeys.\r\nTwenty vehicles leave the Sand Bar. By the time the caravan passes Eds Eats (the lane leading to it cordoned off by yellow tape) and the NO TRESPASSING sign alongside the overgrown lane to that queer forgotten house (not cordoned off; not even noticed, for that matter), the caravan has grown to thirty. There are fifty cars and trucks rolling down both lanes of highway 35 by the time the mob reaches Goltzs, and by the time it passes the 7-Eleven, there must be cardinal vehicles or more, and maybe two hundred and fifty people. Credit this unnaturally rapid swelling to the present cell phone.\r\nTeddy Runkleman, oddly silent (he is, in fact, afraid of the pallid woman sitting beside him ?? her snarling mouth and her wide, unblinking eyes), brings his old truck to a stop over in front of the FLPD parking lot entrance. Sumner Street is steep here, and he sets the parking brake. The other vehicles halt behind him, filling the street from side to side, rumbling through rusty mufflers and blatting through broken acquit pipes. Misaligned headlights stab the fog like searchlight beams at a movie premiere. The nights dank wet-fish smell has been overlaid with odors of burning gas, boiling oil, and cooking clutch lining. After a moment, doors begin to open and then clap shut. But there is no conversation. No yelling. No indecorous yee-haw whooping. Not tonight. The newcomers stand in clusters around the vehicles that brought them, watching as the people in the back of Teddys truck either jump over the sides or slip off the end of the tailgate, watching as Teddy crosses to the passenger door, at this moment as attentive as a young man arriving with his date at the junior prom, watching as he helps do wn the slim young woman who has lost her daughter. The mist seems to outline her somehow, and give her a bizarre galvanising aura, the same blue of the sodium lights on Beezers upper arms. The crowd gives out a collective (and weirdly amorous) sigh when it sees her. She is what connects them. All her life, Tansy Freneau has been the forgotten one ?? even Cubby Freneau forgot her eventually, lead off to Green Bay and leaving her here to work odd jobs and collect the ADC. Only Irma remembered her, only Irma cared, and now Irma is dead. Not here to see (unless shes looking down from heaven, Tansy thinks in some distant and ever-receding part of her mind) her mother suddenly idolized. Tansy Freneau has tonight become the love life subject of French Landings eye and heart. Not its mind, because its mind is temporarily gone (perhaps in search of its conscience), but certainly of its eye and heart, yes. And now, as imperfectly as the girl she once was, Doodles Sanger approaches this wo man of the hour. What Doodles spotted delusion on the floor of Teddys truck bed was an old length of rope, dirty and oily but thick enough to do the trick. Below Doodless petite fist hangs the side drum that her clever hands have forge on the ride into town. She hands it to Tansy, who holds it up in the misty light.\r\nThe crowd lets out another sigh.\r\n gin raised, looking like a female Diogenes in search of an honest man rather than of a cannibal in need of lynching, Tansy walks ?? delicate herself in her jeans and bloodstained sweatshirt ?? into the parking lot. Teddy, Doodles, and Freddy Saknessum walk behind her, and behind them come the rest. They move toward the police station like the tide.\r\nThe Thunder Five are still standing with their backs to the brick wall and their arms folded. â€Å"What the fuck do we do?” Mouse asks.\r\nâ€Å"I dont know about you,” Beezer says, â€Å"but Im gonna stand here until they grab me, which they probably will.” Hes looking at the woman with the upraised noose. Hes a big boy and hes been in a lot of hard corners, but this chick frightens him with her blank, wide eyes, like the eyes of a statue. And theres something stuck in her belt. Something black. Is it a injure? Some kind of dagger? â€Å"And Im not gonna fight, because it wont work.”\r\nâ€Å"Theyll lock the door, right?” Doc asks nervously. â€Å"I mean, the copsll lock the door.”\r\nâ€Å"I imagine,” Beezer says, never taking his eyes from Tansy Freneau. â€Å"But if these folks want Potter, theyll have him on the half shell. Look at em, for Christs sake. Theres a couple of hundred.”\r\nTansy stops, the noose still held up. â€Å" induce him out,” she says. Her voice is louder than it should be, as if some doctor has cunningly hidden an amplifying gadget in her throat. â€Å"Bring him out. Give us the slayer!”\r\nDoodles joins in. â€Å"Bring him out!”\r\nAnd Teddy. â€Å"Gi ve us the orca whale!”\r\nAnd Freddy. â€Å"Bring him out! Give us the killer!”\r\nAnd then the rest. It could almost be the sound track of George Rathbuns Badger Barrage, only instead of â€Å"Block that kick!” or â€Å"On Wisconsin!” they are screaming, â€Å"BRING HIM OUT! control US THE KILLER!”\r\nâ€Å"Theyre gonna take him,” Beezer murmurs. He turns to his troops, his eyes both fierce and frightened. Sweat stands out on his broad forehead in considerable perfect drops. â€Å"When shes got em pumped up to high, shell come and theyll be right on her ass. Dont run, dont even unfold your arms. And when they grab you, let it happen. If you want to see daylight tomorrow, let it happen.”\r\nThe crowd stands knee-deep in fog like spoiled skim milk, chanting, â€Å"BRING HIM OUT! GIVE US THE KILLER!”\r\nWendell Green is chanting right along with them, but that doesnt keep him from continuing to take pictures.\r\nBecause shit, this is the story of a lifetime.\r\nFrom the door behind Beezer, theres a click. Yeah, they locked it, he thinks. Thanks, you whores.\r\nBut its the latch, not the lock. The door opens. Jack Sawyer steps out. He walks past Beezer without looking or reacting as Beez mutters, â€Å"Hey, man, I wouldnt go near her.”\r\nJack advances slowly but not hesitatingly into the no-mans-land between the building and the mob with the woman standing at its head, Lady Liberty with the upraised hangmans noose instead of a torch in her hand. In his simple gray collarless shirt and dark pants, Jack looks like a cavalier from some old romantic tale advancing to contrive marriage. The flowers he holds in his own hand match to this impression. These tiny white blooms are what Speedy left for him beside the sink in Dales bathroom, a cluster of impossibly fragrant white blossoms.\r\nThey are lilies of the vale, and they are from the Territories. Speedy left him no explanation about how to use the m, but Jack needs none.\r\nThe crowd move silent. Only Tansy, lost in the world Gorg has made for her, continues to chant: â€Å"Bring him out! Give us the killer!” She doesnt stop until Jack is directly in front of her, and he doesnt kid himself that its his handsome face or dashing figure that ends the too loud repetition. It is the smell of the flowers, their sweet and vibrant smell the exact opposite of the meaty stench that hung over Eds Eats.\r\nHer eyes clear . . . a little, at least.\r\nâ€Å"Bring him out,” she says to Jack. approximately a question.\r\nâ€Å"No,” he says, and the word is filled with heavy tenderness. â€Å"No, dear.”\r\nBehind them, Doodles Sanger suddenly thinks of her father for the first time in maybe twenty years and begins to weep.\r\nâ€Å"Bring him out,” Tansy pleads. Now her own eyes are filling. â€Å"Bring out the monster who killed my pretty baby.”\r\nâ€Å"If I had him, maybe I would,” Jack sa ys. â€Å"Maybe I would at that.” Although he knows better. â€Å"But the guy weve gots not the guy you want. Hes not the one.”\r\nâ€Å"But Gorg said ?? â€Å"\r\n here(predicate) is a word he knows. One of the words Judy Marshall tried to eat. Jack, not in the Territories but not entirely in this world right now either, reaches forward and plucks the feather from her belt. â€Å"Did Gorg give you this?”\r\nâ€Å"Yes ?? â€Å"\r\nJack lets it drop, then steps on it. For a moment he thinks ?? knows ?? that he feels it buzzing angrily beneath the sole of his shoe, like a half-crushed wasp. Then it stills. â€Å"Gorg lies, Tansy. some(prenominal) Gorg is, he lies. The man in there is not the one.”\r\nTansy lets out a great bellow and drops the rope. Behind her, the crowd sighs.\r\nJack puts his arm around her and again he thinks of George Potters painful dignity; he thinks of all the lost, struggling along without a single clean Territories dawn to li ght their way. He hugs her to him, comprehend sweat and grief and madness and coffee brandy.\r\nIn her ear, Jack whispers: â€Å"Ill catch him for you, Tansy.”\r\nShe stiffens. â€Å"You . . .”\r\nâ€Å"Yes.”\r\nâ€Å"You . . . promise?”\r\nâ€Å"Yes.”\r\nâ€Å"Hes not the one?”\r\nâ€Å"No, dear.”\r\nâ€Å"You swear?”\r\nJack hands her the lilies and says, â€Å"On my mothers name.”\r\nShe lowers her nose to the flowers and inhales deeply. When her head comes up again, Jack sees that the danger has left her, but not the insanity. Shes one of the lost ones now. Something has gotten to her. Maybe if the Fisherman is caught, it will leave her. Jack would like to believe that.\r\nâ€Å"Someone needs to take this lady home,” Jack says. He speaks in a mild, conversational voice, but it still carries to the crowd. â€Å"Shes very tired and full of sadness.”\r\nâ€Å"Ill do it,” Doodles says. Her cheeks gl eam with tears. â€Å"Ill take her in Teddys truck, and if he dont give me the keys, Ill knock him down. I ?? â€Å"\r\nAnd thats when the chant starts again, this time from back in the crowd: â€Å"Bring him out! Give us the killer! Give us the Fisherman! Bring out the Fisherman!” For a moment its a solo job, and then a few other hesitant voices begin to join in and lend harmony.\r\nStill standing with his back against the bricks, Beezer St. Pierre says: â€Å"Ah, shit. Here we go again.”\r\nJack forbade Dale to come out into the parking lot with him, saying that the destiny of Dales uniform might set off the crowd. He didnt mention the little bouquet of flowers he was holding, and Dale barely noticed them; he was too terrified of losing Potter to Wisconsins first lynching of the new millennium. He followed Jack downstairs, however, and has now commandeered the peephole in the door by right of seniority.\r\nThe rest of the FLPD is still upstairs, looking out of the ready-room windows. Henry has ordered Bobby Dulac to give him a running play-by-play. Even in his current state of fill about Jack (Henry thinks theres at least a 40 percent chance the mob will either trample him or tear him apart), Henry is amused and flattered to realize that Bobby is doing George Rathbun without even realizing it.\r\nâ€Å"Okay, Hollywoods out there . . . he approaches the woman . . . no sign of fear . . . the rest of them are quiet . . . Jack and the woman appear to be talking . . . and holy jeezum, hes givin her a bouquet of flowers! What a ploy!”\r\nâ€Å"Ploy” is one of George Rathbuns favorite sports terms, as in The Brew Crews hit-and-run(a) ploy failed yet again last night at Miller Park.\r\nâ€Å"Shes turnin away!” Bobby yells jubilantly. He grabs Henrys shoulder and shakes it. â€Å"Hot damn, I think its over! I think Jack turned her off!”\r\nâ€Å"Even a blind man could see he turned her off,” Henry says.\r\nâ€Å" Just in time, too,” Bobby says. â€Å"Heres roadway Five and theres another truck with one of those big orange poles on it . . . Fox-Milwaukee, I think . . . and ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Bring him out!” a voice outside begins yelling. It sounds cheated and indignant. â€Å"Give us the killer! Give us the Fisherman!”\r\nâ€Å"Oh nooo!” Bobby says, even now sounding like George Rathbun, impressive his morning-after audience how another Badger rally had started to fizzle. â€Å"Not nowwww, not with the TV here! Thats ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"Bring out the Fisherman!”\r\nHenry already knows who that is. Even through two layers of chicken-wire-reinforced glass, that high, yapping cry is impossible to mistake.\r\nWendell Green understands his job ?? dont ever make the mistake of thinking he doesnt. His job is to report the news, to analyze the news, to sometimes photojournalize the news. His job is not to make the news. But tonight he cant help it. This is the second time in the last twelve hours that a career maker of a story has been extended to his grasping, pleading hands, only to be snatched away at the last second.\r\nâ€Å"Bring him out!” Wendell bawls. The raw strength in his voice surprises, then thrills him â€Å"Give us the killer! Give us the Fisherman!”\r\nThe sound of other voices joining in with his provides an incredible rush. It is, as his old college roommate used to say, a real zipper buster.\r\nWendell takes a step forward, his chest swelling, his cheeks reddening, his confidence building. Hes vaguely aware that the activeness News Five truck is rolling slowly toward him through the crowd. Soon there will be 10-ks and 5-ks shining through the fog; soon there will be TV cameras rolling tape by their harsh light. So what? If the woman in the blood-spattered sweatshirt was in the end too chicken to stand up for her own kid, Wendell will do it for her! Wendell Green, shining exemplar of civic responsibility! Wendell Green, leader of the people!\r\nHe begins to pump his camera up and down. Its exhilarating. analogous being back in college! At a Skynyrd concert! Stoned! Its like ??\r\nThere is a huge flash in front of Wendell Greens eyes. Then the lights go out. All of them.\r\nâ€Å"ARNIE HIT HIM WITH HIS FLASHLIGHT!” Bobby is screaming.\r\nHe grabs Dales blind uncle by the shoulders and whirls him in a unrestrained circle. A thick aroma of Aqua Velva descends toward Henry, who knows Bobbys going to kiss him on both cheeks, French style, a second before Bobby actually does this. And when Bobbys narration resumes, he sounds as transported as George Rathbun on those rare cause when the local sports teams actually buck the odds and grab the gold.\r\nâ€Å"Can you believe it, the Mad Hungarian hit him with his ever-lovin flashlight and . . . GREENS DOWN! THE FUCKIN HUNGARIAN HAS PUT EVERYONES preferent ASSHOLE REPORTER ON THE MAT! sort TO GO, HRABOWSKI!”\r\nAll around them , cops are cheering at the tops of their lungs. Debbi Anderson starts chanting â€Å"We Are the Champions,” and other voices quickly lend support.\r\nThese are strange days in French Landing, Henry thinks. He stands with his hands in his pockets, smiling, listening to the bedlam. Theres no lie in the smile; hes happy. But hes also uneasy in his heart. dismayed for Jack.\r\nAfraid for all of them, really.\r\nâ€Å"That was good work, man,” Beezer tells Jack. â€Å"I mean, balls to the wall.”\r\nJack nods. â€Å"Thanks.”\r\nâ€Å"Im not going to ask you again if that was the guy. You say hes not, hes not. But anything we can do to help you find the right one, you just call us.”\r\nThe other members of the Thunder Five rumble assent; Kaiser Bill gives Jack a friendly bop on the shoulder. It will probably leave a bruise.\r\nâ€Å"Thanks,” Jack says again.\r\nBefore he can knock on the door, its opened. Dale grabs him and gives him a crushing em brace. When their chests touch, Jack can feel Dales heart beating hard and fast.\r\nâ€Å"You saved my ass,” Dale says into his ear. â€Å"Anything I can do ?? â€Å"\r\nâ€Å"You can do something, all right,” Jack says, pulling him inside. â€Å"I saw another cop car behind the news trucks. Couldnt tell for sure, but I think this one was blue.”\r\nâ€Å"Oh-oh,” Dale says.\r\nâ€Å"Oh-oh is right. I need at least twenty minutes with Potter. It might not get us anything, but it might get us a lot. Can you hold off Brown and Black for twenty minutes?”\r\nDale gives his friend a grim little smile. â€Å"Ill see you get half an hour. Minimum.”\r\nâ€Å"Thats great. And the 911 tape of the Fishermans call, do you still have that?”\r\nâ€Å"It went with the rest of the evidence we were holding after Brown and Black took the case. A trooper picked it up this afternoon.”\r\nâ€Å"Dale, no!”\r\nâ€Å"Easy, big boy. Ive got a c assette copy, safe in my desk.”\r\nJack pats his chest. â€Å"Dont scare me that way.”\r\nâ€Å"Sorry,” Dale says, thinking, Seeing you out there, I wouldnt have guessed you were afraid of anything.\r\nHalfway up the stairs, Jack remembers Speedy telling him he could use what had been left in the bathroom twice . . . but he has given the flowers to Tansy Freneau. Shit. Then he cups his hands over his nose, inhales, and smiles.\r\nMaybe he still has them after all.\r\n'

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