A Story by Tony

A story of a boy in a man's body.


Onceter made the last hill on the rutted dirt road and stopped at the edge of the highway. The morning air was cool and still as he looked left and then right, the endless ribbon of black stretched across the high desert. He adjusted his mocassin boots, the dr.scholls insert had wandered south again. 
“Stupid thing…”, he thought. “Some Dr..”.
He massaged his knees, grimacing, and thought of the Dr. who had asked his mom when he was a little boy, how she came by the name, Onceter.
His mother was a great wonderful woman, mean as a badger, and loving as a puppy, if she thought you were lacking. Beware the alternate gemini.

''I named him Victor, but I changed it when I got to know him,'' she said.
'I call him Onceter because he is a monster and I'm glad I only had him once.''

He remembered that he laughed then, at the funny way the doctor looked at her, wondering if she was being serious, which she most certainly was.
There was a large rock and he sat on it and looked at the great mountains and got lost in perfect earthen tones greeting the blue. Slowly the sun rose, and the day warmed and he wondered if, in his old man’s ways he had not read the time right on the bus ticket.
“Why should I care if it never comes?” he thought as the crickets got busy. He smiled, thinking,
“You poor b******s have to work all day, making your sound. I can just sit here, ya know.”
As he realized he had said it out loud, his voice hollow among the sage, he heard a vehicle coming, way off.

After watching the dot move slowly toward him for a while, Onceter realized it was not the bus. S**t. 
It was getting hot.
He wondered then, who this was in the vehicle, which was now shiny red as it whooshed toward him. He heard the big SUV slow and then more, and then, with a low rumble, it stopped where he sat.
The window cruised down, silent. The guy in the Navigator turned the thumping thing off and proclaimed,
“Holy crap! I thought you were a mirage all dressed up like that, what the hell are you doing out here old timer?” [pronouncing it like BugsBunny].

“I live back there…..” Onceter thumbed the direction and stood.
The guy looked like he was getting ready to ask more questions, so he gave him a look.

“Do you need a ride or something?” the kid presumed….
”Ok.’”, replied Onceter, grabbing his duffel, and moving toward the behemoth. Once inside they rolled off, the car making a more subtle whooshing sound as it gained velocity.

[BigSmokyValley, Nevada]

Thunderheads were building, bumping into the sierra far off across the BigSmokyValley. He got lost in the process until the kid spoke.
“.. man, this is some vast empty desert, nothing as far as you can see!”
“It looks different when you are in it.’’ Replied Onceter.
The kid ignored him sort of and implied;
“No, seriously, I read a big article about all the mining out here, but I don’t see any mines.”
“They are far back in the hills, on our land, you have to go on the dirt roads, and there is nothing to see anyway.”
“What are they mining for.”
“They are not mining.”
“… but, you just said …?’’
“The mines are just primary access, they are building a city, under the ground.”
“Oh, Bullshit, you been smoking peyote, old man?” the kid laughed.
“I know it’s hard to believe, I hardly do myself.” Said Onceter.

[Peace Pipe]

“So…why are you all dressed up like that?” asked the guy, changing the subject while primping his hair in the rearview.

"Like what?" asked the old man.

" ... Like.. you are in an old western movie or somthing...."

“I am an illusion,” said Onceter, now grinning at him, his teeth surprisingly white among the leathery wrinkles.
“Ha!” said the kid, a little surprised at the humor.

“No, really...” he persisted, smiling in his mind, only.

“I am going to Vegas, for a traditional presentation, I am going to sing and dance.”Onceter continued grinning at the kid.
“Oh,” says the guy, pretending to be interested as he fiddled with his blue tooth.
“What are you doing out here?” asked Onceter.
“...Oh, regional sales meeting, you know...” 
“Ah, so this big car is not yours then?”
“Of course it"s mine!” The youngster shot back,…..”Why would you say that?”
“Well, you just told me you were a car salesman.....”
“I did not!”

Onceter grinned at him again. “Lighten up, aye? I am teasing you.” [‘aye’, in native slang, said without invocation of the ‘I’ sound.]
The guy relaxed and sipped his water bottle. After a while he says,
“So, how do you like my Nav, old timer?”
The old man just shrugged.
“It’s new, ya know…… loaded, even got a TV in the back the kids can watch.”
“I don’t see no kids.”
“Well, if ya had em .. you know.... heh, .. but no, yeah, its got the V8, best stereo, best mileage for a SUV...I worked a long time for the privilege of owning this rig.”
“I know you did.”

As the Lincoln flew towards the top of the hill that never seemed to come, the kid fidgeted with the seat controls, somehow uncomfortable in his land yacht.

“You don"t seem too impressed there buddy.”

“Well, I’m not, but that needn’t occupy space in your head.”

“Really?” says the guy, getting worked up again….. “You know what I think, I think you are acting all that but really, you are just jealous ...... because you, for whatever reason, cannot afford the luxury.”
“That’s what you think.” replied Onceter.

© 2013 Tony

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Added on October 28, 2013
Last Updated on October 28, 2013



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