Buck and me, we swung by Hector’s place on the way back to our cabin. Now Hector’s cabin is a mite smaller then mine and about a mile nearer to town.
Hector (or Eric as he’s sometimes called, why I know not) was a railway worker. He was the first on site at the crash scene that caused the sickness. He saw what the medicos called patient zero and got chased back through the brush fighting off all comers with nothing but a baseball bat and spraining his ankle into the bargain. He made it to where it all blew up, thirty-nine Donkey Drive, and was saved by Regan and Carter. He never worked the rail-roads again. But being a decent engineer he eked out a living fixing trucks and cars for at a rate that folk could afford. Sure he’d never be rich but he did OK.
“Hey! That you and Buck I see?” the voice, un-mistakenly Eric, came from the cabin.
“’Pends on who you mean by YOU,” says I.
Eric bursts from his cabin arms outstretched, grinning like a mule. “Man, you only live a mile away and I ain’t sin you in, how long?”
“Too long,” says I crooking Lilith in my right arm and wrapping my left around my old pal.
“Aye to that,” he says stepping back. He scans my state and has a good look at Buck. He couldn't fail to notice Buck’s blood matted fur and my dishevelled condition. “Somehow I don’t tink I'm goin’ te like dis.”
I smile, “there’s a mess of roamers up by the Pedersen ranch. The city’d like us to clear them out.”
Eric looks sceptically at me.
“There’s a bounty in it,” says I.
“Fify, fify,” says he.
“Fifty, fifty,” I say.
“Come on in an’ git cleaned up. Pork OK for dinner? We’ll head up there on the morrow.”
I followed Eric into his shack and Buck he follows me.