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datatime: 2022-12-05 19:10:44 Author:OubkQDLr

"Well, here we are," she said, a bit too brightly. "Another night, another motel. Decker, we're in a rut."

"He'll be fine," Lanie said. "Put him on a highway and he'll eat his way home."

"What else did he mention?"

"What for? He's long gone."

"Ah." Moody Blues. The man was a child of the Sixties.

She reached over and took his hand. "Don't worry about your weird friend, he'll find his way back to Harney."

"I could call the cops, you know."

"Go ahead." Decker slumped back on the bed and closed his eyes. Soon he heard water running in the bathroom. He wished it were rain.

Lanie came out, still dripping. Already the purple ligature bars were fading.

Decker had always been a sucker for fresh-out-of-the-shower women. With considerable effort he pushed ahead with purposeful conversation. "Dennis told you I was here."

"He'll be fine," Lanie said. "Put him on a highway and he'll eat his way home."

"Just about Dickie and the tournament, that's all," Lanie said. She sat on the bed and crossed her legs. "What's with you? I came all this way and you act like I've got a disease."

Decker said, "He forgot his plane ticket." Not to mention the insistent New Orleans bail bondsman; the airline disturbance was a federal rap.

"Those are first-rate," Decker said, but he had nothing more plausible to offer in the way of Skink theories. A bomber for the Weather Underground. Owsley's secret chemist. Lead singer for the Grass Roots. Take your pick.

"As long as he didn't hurt you."

"Go ahead." Decker slumped back on the bed and closed his eyes. Soon he heard water running in the bathroom. He wished it were rain.

She reached over and took his hand. "Don't worry about your weird friend, he'll find his way back to Harney."

Lanie came out, still dripping. Already the purple ligature bars were fading.

"He's not much of a crooner," Lanie grumbled.

Not so long, Lanie thought, maybe fifteen minutes. "Mind if I take a shower?"

"Go ahead." Decker slumped back on the bed and closed his eyes. Soon he heard water running in the bathroom. He wished it were rain.

"I could call the cops, you know."

"He's a legend," Lanie said. She started unbuttoning Decker's shirt. "One rumor is he's a mass murderer from Oregon. Another says he's ex-CIA, helped kill Trujillo. One story goes he's hiding from the Warren Commission."

"I mean, besides tying you up," Decker said.

"Yeah. 'Knights in White Satin.' "

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