What Something Can Mean

by Amelia

"You do know this is all your fault, Mr. Tanner. Mr. Larabee would not have sent our good selves out into this back woods world of Colorado if you hadn't pulled that prank on him involving multiple exploding balloons filled with neon pink sticky confetti," Ezra huffed as they walked up a narrow country road having left the federal car parked at the turn off so they wouldn't be heard or seen coming.

"Ez, this had nothing to do with Larabee's new color," Vin grinned before going on. "Higher ups have been getting reports about this secluded trading post selling their own rolled cigarettes and possibly 'shine. It had to be checked out, and it was our turn to go."

"How much further is this diabolical place off the beaten trail?" Ezra demanded.

"Not much, should be around that bend up ahead of us. Ahhh..." Vin answered turning toward his friend, in doing so not seeing the deep rut in the lane. He stepped right in it and sent himself sprawling flat out.

"Mr. Tanner, Vin, are you alright?" Ezra asked concerned.

"Yeah, just dandy," Vin grumbled, lying there for a moment.

"Well, I must say I have heard numerous stories and meanings, but this is a new meaning for 'road trip' or are you that quaint meaning of the term Mr. Wilmington so happily likes to use, 'road kill.'"

"Road Kill! Hey, it's mine it's mine! This here road belongs ta me, so it's mine," a man bursting out of the woods beside them yelled.

"I beg your pardon sir, what is yours?" Ezra frowned, and at the same time moved his hand closer to his gun under his jacket.

Vin, doing the same thing as he stood, was ready to defend themselves since the man was carrying a shot gun.

"I heard ya say 'road kill.' And if it's here on this here road then it's mine," the man declared, looking up and down the road for the dead animal.

"Sorry mister, my friend was talking about me when I tripped and fell flat on the road," Vin, finally understanding, explained.

"Oh, well shucks, thought I wouldn't have to go huntin' after all when I heard him say it. What you fella's doing out here anyway?"

Vin figuring it was best to be vague at the moment, still not knowing just what the man might do with the shot gun. "Had to leave the car back down there. Was hoping to find some water for it and something to drink for us."

Ezra kept quiet for now, deciding to let Vin's laid back voice and appearance work for them. Ezra stayed at the ready, like Vin. When a shot gun unknown is involved, it's best to be prepared for anything.

"Well yer headin' in the right direction. My trading post is just up the way. Ya tell Beula that Harold said to give ya a glass of cold 'shine."

"We sure will, thank you, Mr. Harold," Vin called after the man as he headed back into the trees.

"Well, it would appear we have been openly invited, which means this should be an open and closed case and our good selves can head back to civilization in the immediate future." Ezra smiled, now that he saw the end near to what he saw as a punishment assignment for being sent out into the back woods.

Finally, they reached the old building that was a trading post and entered. The two agents found half was set up like a little grocery and the other half set up with a short bar with stools. Seeing the woman behind the bar area, they headed to her.

"Ma'am, Mr. Harold sent us on up here and said to ask Beula for a glass of 'shine," Vin said, putting more twang in his voice to help him sound more country.

"Oh, sure enough, I'll get ya both a cold glass and add some ice to the 'shine. It being so hot out side, ya must be just dyin' of thirst if Harold sent ya on without him."

The woman disappeared to the back into what they figured must be a kitchen of some sort, and came back carrying two glasses of what looked like water with ice.

Vin and Ezra looked at each other. Both picked up their glass, sniffed it, then tasted it, then looked at the woman in surprise.

"This isn't 'shine, it's a mineral water of some kind and something else," Vin stated.

"Sure it's CHINE. It's line stone spring water with some chicory soaked in it. My people have been making that here for generations now," the woman frowned.

"I'm sorry, ma'am, you're right this is real good chine. By the way, you wouldn't happen to sell any cigarettes here do you?"

"Yep, sure do. The best smoked ciggeggs around," she beamed and again disappeared in the back and came out with a basket and set it down in front of them, saying, "Secrets in the way ya smoke the eggs in the cinders at the base of the fire."

"Madam, is there anyway we may take a dozen of your smoked ciggeggs and a gallon of your wonderful chine with us? We have a friend back home who will possibly just be pink with happiness with these." Ezra smiled at the woman, though he saw Vin's agreeing smirk at Larabee's soon to be reaction.


Comments to: isam@usit.net


Line stone is a mineral spring water. Not lime stone. Line stone is a dark red like burnt red clay formation. The water has a slight bite not as bad a sulfur water, wild chicory is put in gallon jars and sealed, put in the sun from sunrise to sunset.. It gives the water a more enjoyable taste and does actually kill the thirst on really hot days.
Ciggeggs sounds like cigarettes when said by a country person. They are hard boiled eggs soaked in apple cider and then put in the cinders at the edge of fire pits with metal or something for a cover and smoked for a while that way.