I'm not sure whether I've shared this or not but this WIP is finally complete, edited and I'm currently trying to find it a good home. I have a few places in mind that may be interested but we'll see.
I'll keep you posted.
Anyway, in today's sample Wil and Gramps have made a stop at a hotel near the Saskatchewan/Manitoba border. They still have little Dakota with them, and fear they are being followed. Unfortunately, little Dakota has a connection to some scary and dangerous people. And they hope they can get her to a safe place before those people catch up with them. Enjoy!
Wil pulled into the first respectable looking motel they came to. It was clean, had an ice cooler out front and a pool. It was attached to a small strip mall with a hair salon, a café, a souvenir store, a drug store and a pub on the other end. For some reason, the motel gave Wil the feel that Norman Bates was about to pop out from somewhere in his mother’s wig and dress. But Gramps assured him that he was just being paranoid, as usual.
He lost the argument over who’d pay for the room, so while Gramps grilled the desk clerk about what was included in the fee, Wil took Dakota out the back door to check out the pool.
The pool area was surrounded by six-foot high metal fence, with some sort of sheer black rubbery cover stuck against it. Wil guessed it was to offer pool patrons a bit of privacy from people driving past.
They walked up to the gate and Wil noted the huge padlock hanging from the handle. Wil got closer to the fence, trying to peer through the metal links and plastic cover. He saw there was shallow kid’s pool on one end and a hot tub on the other. Considering the two-star look of the motel, the pool seemed to be well-maintained and clear. With the typical Saskatchewan summer weather still a sweltering 35 above, even at 7:00 at night, the deep blue water looked inviting.
“Hey! Maybe we can go for a dip tomorrow morning before heading back out,” Wil said.
Dakota pouted. “But I don’t have a bathing suit.”
“Me neither. But I think I saw some suits in the window of that store down the way. Let’s go see. Maybe we can find something in the old man’s size and make him join us.”
They both jumped at the sudden snort from behind them. “It’ll be a snowy day in Haiti before you’ll get me in some trunks again. But why don’t we stop by that store on our way to get a bedtime snack at the restaurant?”
“Chicken,” Wil said. “C’mon. You still got the legs for it. Maybe they even have one of those full late-1800 style ones for ya. The ladies will be all over you.”
“Shut it and let’s go, smart butt. We should get the little lady here back as soon as possible for some shut-eye. Been a long day.”
Wil repressed a snicker, waved Dakota ahead of him with Gramps and then followed them back to the motel lobby. The trio cut through the motel to get to the sidewalk out front, then up the strip mall to the store.
The storeowner was about to close up but allowed them to come in, flipping the ‘Closed’ sign behind them. Dakota found a bright blue one-piece with different colored palm trees all over it. Wil chose a pair of white trunks with red maple leafs all over them.
“How patriotic of you, boy,” Gramps smirked. “I hope for everyone’s sake those aren’t see-through when they get wet.”
“I think there’s enough leaf clusters in the right spots that I won’t embarrass myself.”
Wil took Dakota’s bathing suit and put it on the cashier’s counter with his trunks. As he reached in his back pocket to pull out his wallet, Gramps grabbed his wrist. “This is one’s on me, son.”
“I’m confused. First the motel room, and now this? What’s with all the generosity all of a sudden? It’s almost painful for you to spend money most of the time, even for gifts. What’s up? You find a money tree you’re not telling us about?”
Gramps shook his head. “Can’t I just do something nice without the Spanish Inquisition? I just want to, alright? Done!”
“You’d better watch it, mister. Folks might start thinking your cranky, tough guy stuff is all just an act.”
“Hmph. Just shut up, take the kid outside and wait for me.”
Wil put his arm around Dakota, and guided her outside. While they talked about what they’d have at the restaurant, something caught Wil’s eye on the main road. A red Hummer. The windows were blacked out, preventing Wil from seeing who was in the vehicle. It seemed to slow down as it drove past them, then it took off around the corner.
A slosh of bile gurgled in Wil’s stomach, as he tried his best to maintain his cool in front of Dakota. He felt a slap on his back that almost made him jump out of his skin.
“What’s wrong with you, boy?” Gramps looked up at the young man with a creased brow. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
Wil stared in the direction of where the Hummer turned.
Not a ghost, but definitely not someone I want to see anytime soon.
“Well, if you’re going to just stand there staring off into nowhere land, at least close your mouth. Bugs are out now. Besides, you aren’t exactly making yourself look any smarter.”
Dakota burst into laughter.
Wil shifted his eyes down at Gramps. “Now who’s being a smart butt?”
“My butt is smarter than you look at the moment.” Gramps turned, and waved the other two to follow him. “Let’s move on up to the restaurant, already. I need my nighttime coffee.”
On the short walk up to the café, Wil looked over his shoulder a dozen times. He darted his eyes from one side of the street to the other ahead of them. Thanks for the paranoia, old man, he thought. He didn’t feel any better in the café.
They sat at a booth close to the front, right next to the window. Every time a car drove by, Wil’s heart picked up its pace.
I hope you liked today's sample. I'm going to share a few more snippets until I find a publisher for it. So...I may be sharing the entire thing. LOL! OH! And be sure to check out the other people on the Sweet Saturday list. A very talented bunch of writers. Until next time...