Thursday, July 24, 2008

“A Town Called Disdain”, Episode 84: stand-off!

Larry Winchester (“like Melville, if Melville were not boring” -- Harold Bloom) now returns to our own own humble planet, if only briefly, in this, our uncut serialization of his sprawling (“makes Stephen King look like Raymond Carver” -- Harold Bloom) masterwork:


Down we fly through the stratosphere, zeroing in on the Western Hemisphere and the night-shrouded continent of North America, zooming down to the state of New Mexico and to small bright light in the desert, a light which grows into a circle of lights with another light in its center, and then as the circle of lights grows larger we see the light at its center split into the two headlights of Enid’s truck, surrounded by twenty-five or thirty Motorpsychos with their own headlights blazing, and directly in front of the truck’s headlights lies Hope’s dead pony Whisper with Hope standing next to it, and next to Hope stands Enid, holding her father’s big old .45 out at arm’s length cocked and pointed straight at Moloch’s forehead.

The night breeze gently stirs Enid’s dark hair as she stares down the barrel of the pistol, which she holds one-handed, in her strong sculptress’s hand, and her left hand rests lightly on Hope’s abdomen, as if holding the girl back, and indeed Hope leans slightly forward, as if ready to leap onto Moloch to tear his one good eye out of its socket with her bare fingers.

Moloch’s face is motionless except for a dribble of greenish spit oozing maddeningly slowly from one corner of his scarified mouth and down into his spiky grease-glistening whiskers. In one lens of his mirrored aviator sunglasses gapes the black muzzle of the .45 and far behind it Enid’s steadfast eyes. In the other lens floats the foreshortened pale face of Hope and her dark eyes.

The three of them stand lit as brightly as actors on a movie set by the headlights of the motorcycles and the truck.

The desert air reeks of motorcycle exhaust, of rancid male sweat, of foul denims and leathers.

Smiling slightly, Moloch makes a gentle, almost courtly gesture with his hand, and at once all the Motorpsychos pull out their weapons and the silence breaks metallically with the manifold snicking of racking slides and cocking hammers.

Without moving her head or her gun Enid moves her eyes slowly from side to side and sees various sawed-off shotguns, submachine guns and pistols pointed straight at her.

She takes one firm step forward and now the muzzle of her gun presses solidly into the middle of Moloch’s forehead.

A fresh gobbet of greenish drool oozes out from the corner of Moloch’s mouth.

****

(Click here for our next thrilling chapter. Kindly turn to the right hand side of this page for an up-to-date listing of links to all other extant episodes of Larry Winchester’s A Town Called Disdain™, third-place runner-up for the Carling Black Label Award for Inspirational Fiction.)

6 comments:

Tedster said...

Raquel Welch. She was my first starlet crush when I was in elementary school. My question is which movie the still is from Bandolero, 100 Rifles, or Hannie Caulder? My guess is Hannie Caulder. Looks like we've got another cliff hanger with the story. Will stay tuned.

Dan Leo said...

Tedster, you win the chocolate cigar once again. That shot is indeed from the classic "Hannie Caulder".

kathleenmaher said...

Cliff-hanger is right. I keep trying to come up with a trick of geometry or physics that could make this turn out so the beautiful young women survive.
Why is Moloch's spit green? Maybe it's time for another flying saucer to intervene.

Manny said...

The tension is unbearable. I need a drink.

Dan Leo said...

Kathleen, I think I found the reason for Moloch's green drool, way back in Episode 34:

"Then he sat himself down by the fire with a warm sixpack of Falstaff and a bottle of Gordon’s gin. He had taken several Tuinals and just one Delaudid to smooth the meth down a bit, and the acid suffused him nicely now as he sipped the gin and beer and drew occasionally upon the hookah loaded with opiated hash."

That should equal green drool.

And, Manny, go ahead and have a can of Falstaff (If you can find one.)

kathleenmaher said...

That combination sounds awfully sickening. It's enough to explain green or even purple.