TITLE: Redemption chap 3 1 of 4
By Randy Somers
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Heywood experienced a revival of interest in Buck’s past history. Even with the larger population of the Scurry County added to the city’s the small town atmosphere prevailed.
Everyone knew everyone else’s business, even if they did not. Old stories about Buck’s life clashed with the new information of the good looking blond that had been seen having lunch with Buck at the city center lot. Speculation ran down every rabbit trail that existed, even in official corners.
Chief of Police, Antonio Gonzalez, aka Tony, sat having lunch at the diner the day Barbara had lunch with Buck. He had his special table, to the side but with a view of the street out the large front window. Sipping on his Coke, he noticed the blond lady sitting with Buck.
Silvia came over with his sandwich and followed his gaze toward the new found couple. “What’d you think of that?” she said, nodding toward the window.
Tony chuckled. “Never would’a guessed that. Who’d knew that ugly old toro would have attracted such a sweet looking senorita.” Using his elbow to nudge Silvia, “But you’re still the cutest one around.” Tony gave his best grin, holding up his empty glass.
Wrinkling her nose at him, Silvia took the glass, filled it and brought it back. “Knew there was more to Buck than he shows. I’d sure love to hear what they’re saying.”
Tony thought back to his first meeting and first impression of Buck. Buck had come into the cafe for lunch the day he stopped in town. Tony, sitting in his corner, watched this rough biker come in and order. The Biker ordered his sweet tea and had glanced at the menu. Their eyes met and a staring contest ensued.
Tony, his police sixth sense vibrating, estimated the value and potential violence of the Biker. Typical low life. Not racial profilin if he’s not a minority. But by outward appearances, this gringo fits the mold. Wonder if there’s drugs on him or in the bike.
Tony broke eye content to look out at the bike. A large back pack sat on a luggage rack, strapped with black bungee cords. Dirt and dust covered the bike. He’s ridden a long way without stopping or cleaning up. Looking back at the biker, I wonder where you come from? Any Warrants?
The biker had ignored Tony by this time and sat eating his large double cheeseburger with fries. Eatin’ fast. Not used to staying around in one place long. Hope that’s true here.
Why the long knives. No crime in Texas to carry ‘em, but I wonder why he does.
Tony had finished his meal, left money on the table for the meal and a tip. Tony did not hold with free meals or free donuts. He and his officers paid for what they ate or used. No questions of favoritism that way. Tony walked out to his squad car, passing by the large Harley, memorizing the plate on his way.
Tony drove down the block, turned around and parked so he would see the biker drive away. Using his cell phone he called Connie. “What’s up Chief?” she answered.
“Want you to run a plate, see what name’s attached to it. Texas motorcycle 28SA337. Yeah I’ll hang on ‘til you get a name.”
A moment later, “Comes back to a Chad Dillion, out of Amarillo. Want the address?”
“No. But run his name and see if you can get a DOB. Then run him for wants and warrants.”
“I found a DOB of 18 Aug 55. That sound like the biker?”
“Don’t know. Hard to tell. But run with that.”
“Sorry to disappoint ya honey, but Chad’s clear with that DOB. Want me to keep searching. Got some extra time right now.”
“Yeah. Call Amarillo and see if they know this guy. I’ll check in later.”
Tony sat back and waited. He didn’t mind waiting. His experience told him that not much happened around here, but who knows, something fun might pop up.
About ten minutes later, the biker stopped at the Stop Sign and noticed Tony’s squad car. He pulled right and then pulled to the curb and shut the bike down. Swing his right leg over the gas tank; he just sat there, looking at Tony.
OK. I’ll bite, Tony thought as he stepped out of the cruiser. Putting on his hat, he walked across the street to the biker. He said, “Seemed like you wanted to meet me, stopping like ya did.”
The biker answered, “Seems the other way round to me. Most cops usually find some excuse to pull me over. Thought I’d save you the trouble this time. You’d find anything on me?”
Tony smiled, “Nada. You came back clear. Is there something I missed?”
“That depends on what you’re lookin for and what kind of cop you are.”
“What kind of cop do you think I am?”
“Don’t know right off hand. Depends on if you are gonna hassle me and make threats if I don’t leave town. Most cops act that way. Don’t say as I blame ‘em sometimes. But I’m really a marshmallow at heart. Looks can be deceiving you know.”
Tony started to like this biker. “That deceiving part includes the way bikers look at cops. Where ya headin?”
The biker smiled, “No place really. Just riden. Really lookin for a place to settle. I’m just a lost soul lookin for a little peace and quiet.”
Tony pointed at the handles of the machetes, “Those seem to indicate that you haven’t found a lot of peace where you’d tried to stop before.”
The Biker just shrugged. “Sometimes people see those and just leave me alone. I like it that way. Saves a lot of trouble of a pissing contest. But I don’t take much from people. I'm easy to get along with unless you’re looking for trouble.”
“That include me?” Tony asked.
“Maybe. But I ain’t never had a fight with a cop. Never had the need. Like I said, just looking for a home, like that old boll weevil.”
“What?” Tony asked. “Boll weevil?”
“You seem older than me. Guess I missed that tune. Don’t know what kinda work you’re looking for, but there’s a few job openings in the area. What kinda work you want?
“Like working by myself, outdoors. Being my own boss makes life easier for me and others. Looking for something interesting that has a point to it.” Buck shrugged.
Tony glanced over at the ruined city lot. “Did you notice that center city lot? The city wants to sell it if someone’ll clean it up. How much money ya got?”
“Enough to get by,” Buck said. Looking over his shoulder at the lot a small spark of interest emerged. “What do they want done with that junk pile?”
“The City Council just wants it cleaned up, made nice looking. Can be either a park or other buildings. They’ve been trying to dump it on someone for a few years now. No one wants the challenge, no profit in it.”
Buck turned back around.
“Is there a good place to spend a couple days? Need to wash clothes and rest up some. I’d like to look around, maybe find something to do.”
“Sure. Couple nice motels straight down this street. One on each side. Either place is about the same, except the cost. You choose.”
“Will do. I’m allowed to leave right?”
“Sure. No problems by me. Enjoyed our conversation.”
“You seem decent. Maybe I’ll ask you to lunch in a couple of days if I stay.”
“Maybe I’ll accept, if you stay around.”
The biker kicked his leg back over the gas tank, started up Harley, not letting too loud a roar escape when he accelerated away.
Tony walked back to the squad car and headed for the office. As he drove he thought, Um, I wonder. Not a bad gringo really. Seems like he’s got his head on straight. Straight forward, I like that. Honest. Wonder if he’ll stay around? Wonder what the background check will show?
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