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 Category:  General Fiction
  Posted: July 16, 2021      Views: 71
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Retired Marine; retired high school teacher; married 35 years; father of three; five grandchildren; one rescue granddog.

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Chapter 11 of the book Fifty Days of Friendship
dangerous friends
"Johnny" by Bill Schott

In my later teens, both of my parents were out of the house more and I had a liberal range of hours on my own. My dad was hopping up and down work shifts at Buick, as they were moving people to different plants to meet changing goals. He would be gone all day one week and all night others.

My mother was a school teacher and my next older brother and I were her last kids at home. She was also pursuing her Masters in Special Ed which put her on the road nights, weekends, and in the summer to complete her requirements.

With all this freedom of movement and level of trust, I found that I was totally unreliable when required to stay out of trouble.

Johnny was a hot-tempered Texas transplant who liked to farm, re-build cars, and ram the roads looking for thrills.

A couple friends and I got mixed up with Johnny for awhile as we discovered the finer points of drinking beer and whiskey, making big engines fit into small cars, and riding rum-runnin' cars as we raced throught the back roads like we were on a mission.

Johnny's father, I'm pretty sure, was living in our state because Texas wanted him in their jail. He was a tough old buzzard who was a cross between a psycho Popeye and someone a nun would shank without a tear. He would get cross with Johnny and punch him in the face like he wanted to kill him. The son took it, but passed the joy on to others. No one crossed Johnny.

I recall the last night we were running around with him, I got into the most trouble I'd ever been in.

We had been working on dropping a 427 into a Chevelle, which had taken some expanding of the engine compartment via cutting torch, drilling out adaptor motor mounts to connect it to the frame, and then towing the car, in high gear, to loosen the cam shaft and pistons.

This last action placed me on a tractor with a chain pulling the car. I set the idle too high, popped the clutch, and immediately pulled the front end off the Chevelle.

Johnny was livid and insisted it was time for me to go home. Being rather menacing, as well as my ride, I agreed with his decree.  I rode on the fender of that same tractor, while Johnny hit every pot hole and went past every low-hanging limb, all the way to the outskirts of my town. I was very drunk, possibly even drugged, I learned later. I wandered three blocks to my house and sang dumb songs while hanging onto the telephone pole outside my family's home.

They brought me inside and, the next morning, sicced the county sheriff on me. The deputy interrogated me, told me Johnny was a drug dealer, had likely spiked my 'kool-aid', and was a suspect in several investigations. I was told to get my act together and forget about Johnny.

That was the last I saw that guy. (Sob) He simply disappeared, I guess.  I never asked where.


The book continues with Steve, Not William. We will provide a link to it when you review this below.

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