Daily Archives: February 7, 2016

How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 28

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Inside the Marshal’s office, Slade picked up the only two possessions he had in the world that he cared about. A box of cigars and a wrinkled, grainy old photograph of his parents, who stared solemnly at the camera as was the custom at time.

Gunther reached into the desk drawer, pulled out a bottle of whiskey and poured two shots.

“Might I propose a plan since yours failed so unceremoniously?”

Slade nodded. Gunther tossed his shot back and poured another one.

“F%&k it,” Gunther said, pushing Slade’s shot closer to him. “Keep up, boy.”

Slade drank his then stared at Gunther, waiting. Finally, he asked. “What’s the plan?”

“That is the plan. F&*k….it.”

Gunther tossed another back then set himself and Slade up again. “Son, in all the years I’ve been at this, one thing has never changed. All the money in the West flows East and absolutely nothing but shit flows back this way. You got your fancy pants politicians preaching about manifest destiny, how the country is going to shine from sea to shining sea but if you walk into any town all they’re willing to pay for is one or two assholes to protect it all.”

Slade and Gunther threw back another round.

“And you know what their response to everything is?” Gunther asked.

“What?” Slade asked.

“‘Figure it out, assholes!’” Gunther said. “Don’t matter what. Tornadoes. Floods. Famine. Injuns. Criminals. Don’t matter at all. ‘Just figure it out, you two assholes we pay a pittance to!’”

“Sounds about right,” Slade said.

“It’s exactly right,” Gunther said. “They aren’t willing to pay the cost of what it will take to enforce the law proper in this Godforsaken land and men like Jack Buchanan know it. And everyone who lives here is too preoccupied with their own lives to bother to stand up and ask the political types to do right by us so honestly…f%$k it. F%$k them. F$%k Highwater. F%$k everything.”
“That’s not my way,” Slade said.

“Yeah,” Gunther said. “I know that. I knew you were different the first day I met you. I said to myself, ‘Son of a bitch, they sent a man that’s going to expect me to work for a living.’ But son you know the reason why I always try to talk you out of this shit isn’t because I don’t believe in you but because I don’t believe in the powers that be. The last two people who should have to die are the two assholes paid a pittance to protect the place just because Washington won’t ante up to provide enough manpower to send the Jack Buchanans of the world to the grave.”

Slade had always looked at Gunther as lazy and cowardly but in that moment he started to make a lot of sense. Gunther poured another round. The glasses clinked.

“Here’s to f%&king it,” Gunther said.

“F$%k it,” Slade said.

“Now you’re talking,” Gunther said.

The two men drank then sat in silence for a moment.

“I don’t know what to do now,” Slade said.

“You don’t know what to do?” Gunther asked. “Jesus Christ, you got two women after you and God knows why on account of I seen rattle snakes with better personalities. Pick one of ‘em already.”

Slade locked his hands behind his head and sat back. “I did.”

“You did?” Gunther asked. “Shit. Yet another piece of vital information withheld from your Deputy. Which one?”

“Sarah.”

“Ahh,” Gunther said. “The Widow Farquhar. A lovely woman. You’ll…you’ll make a fine couple.”

Slade noticed the hesitation. The whiskey loosened up his tongue. “What?”

“Nothing,” Gunther said.

“You said she was pretty and rich and desperate and I shouldn’t f$%k it up,” Slade said.

“I did,” Gunther said. “That was before…”

Gunther didn’t want to say it.

“What?” Slade asked.

“Before I became aware that Miss Bonnie wanted to be all over you like stink on a skunk.”

“She doesn’t,” Slade said.

“Oh you didn’t see the look in her eyes that I did, boy,” Gunther said. “The only thing stopping her from scratching out the Widow Farquhar’s eyes was fear of the gallows. She wants you and she wants you bad.”

“Yeah,” Slade said. He poured out two shots this time. “She had her chance.”

Gunther cleared his throat. “Did she really though?”

The boys drank again. “Yes.”

“But you didn’t really ask her,” Gunther said.

“No,” Slade said. “No I reckon I didn’t.”

“Sooo….”

“Doesn’t matter,” Slade said as he stood up. “I made a promise.”

Gunther got out of his chair. “You actually proposed to the Widow Farquhar?”

“Yup.”

“Shit,” Gunther said. “Well, that’s not something easily wiggled out of.”

“I don’t want to wiggle out of it,” Slade said.

“Whatever you say,” Gunther said.

The men shook hands.

“Where are you off to?” Gunther asked.

“To see if Sarah will let me sleep on her floor,” Slade said.

“Gosh,” Gunther said. “Such a whirlwind romance.”

“You got somewhere to go?” Slade asked.

“Oh sure,” Gunther said. “Don’t you worry about me none.”

“See you around, Gunth.”

“See you.”

Truth be told, Gunther’s only real plan was to keep living in the Marshal’s office until some bureaucrat got around to filling the position.

Unbeknownst to him, a body had laid perfectly still underneath a blanket inside the cage throughout the entire conversation. A hand clawed its way out between the bars and grabbed the old man’s shoulder.

“What the?!”

It was Leo Fitzpatrick, local harmless drunk, sleeping another one off.

“Shit Leo,” Gunther said. “Scared me half to death.”

“Sorry,” Leo said. “I let myself in. Maureen threw me out again.”

“Well that’s a good way to get yourself shot,” Gunther replied.

“Can I get some of that?” Leo asked, pointing to the bottle.

Gunther handed it to him. “I thought you were trying to dry out.”

“A little hair of the dog never hurt anyone.”

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How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 27

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Joe found Miles inside the church, drawing away. A grizzly bear this time.

“Go.”

“What?” Miles asked.

“Get up and go,” Joe said. “Right now. Start walking. Anywhere. I’ll find you.”

Miles stood up. “What’s going on?”

“I am your father and you will do as I say!”

Miles sniffed the air. “Blythe! He’s in town.”

“Now you know,” Joe said. “Get out of here.”

“No,” Miles said.

“Miles you know what he does,” Joe said. “He’ll use you to make me suffer.”

“I’m not going,” Miles said.

Joe grabbed his son by the shirt collar and dragged him toward the door. Miles dug his heels in and slapped at his father’s hand.

“If she were here she’d want you to go,” Joe said.

“BUT SHE’S NOT IS SHE?” Miles yelled as he struggled with his old man before finally clocking him a good one upside the head.

That didn’t go over well. Joe’s eyes turned yellow. His muscles bulged out, ripping his shirt apart. Louder than a lion’s roar he bellowed, “I…SAID…GO!!!!”

Miles wasn’t going to argue with that.

“Fine,” the kid said as he walked away. “Do your breathing.”

Joe fell flat on his back and did just that.

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How the West Was Zombed – Chapter 26

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“Rain!”

Halfway down the main drag, Gunther caught up with his now ex-boss. Slade was on fire and making a beeline for the Bonnie Lass, outside of which Blythe and his new gaggle of employees were congregating.

“God damn it son, will you hold up?”

Slade kept walking.

“You think you could have run that stunt you pulled back there by me first?” Gunther asked.

No response.

“I’ve had this job before you were even born and now I gotta up and leave it because of some slick sleazy lawyer?”

“No one asked you to,” Slade replied.

“Shit boy,” Gunther said. “Forty years I’ve never not once had a Marshal’s back and I’m not about to start now. Do you at least got some sort of plan?”

As Slade drew near, Jack rubbed his eyes and cried some crocodile tears. “Boo hoo hoo those poor Injuns!!!”

WAM! Slade’s right cross knocked out three of Jack’s teeth. And he needed those. He didn’t have many left to begin with.

Like clockwork, Hewett and Becker had their guns drawn and trained on Slade. The Buchanan Boys had yet to have their hardware returned to them, but they didn’t take kindly to seeing their favorite brother-cousin decked and looked ready to tear Slade apart.

“That was a horrible plan,” Gunther said.

Blythe raised a hand. “Gentlemen! Gentlemen, simmer down now. As our dear Lord and Savior Jesus Christ once said, ‘If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also.”

Jack wasn’t interested in a scripture lesson. “YOU’RE A DEAD MAN SLADE!”

The counselor stepped in front of the former Marshal and flashed his red eyes Jack’s way.

“Mr. Slade is lucky you’re a good Christian, Mr. Buchanan. You won’t stoop to his level. It’s time for you and your family to celebrate.”

Jack shook to and fro like he was dizzy. He caught his bearings and pointed at Slade. “Shit Slade, if I weren’t a good Christian, I would bust you up!”

That reaction met with loud cries of disappointment from the various and sundry Buchanans. Jack quelled all dissent by yelling, “Come on, boys! Let’s get f$%ked up!”

They filed into the saloon. Miss Bonnie’s protest could be heard on the street.

Blythe turned around. “Mr. Slade. We’ve got off on the wrong foot.”

“F$%k you,” was all Slade had to say to that.

“Gentlemen,” Blythe said to Hewett and Becker, a cue for them to holster their steel. “Mr. Slade, I surely hope you won’t take this personally. Business is business and I am but a cog in the great machine that is the Legion Corporation. My superiors tell me to acquire the services of brutish men and I have no choice but to abide.”

“I’ll bring every last one of you down,” Slade said.

Blythe gave Slade a glimpse of his red peepers. “This matter no longer interests you. You’ll never give it a second thought.”

Like a confused puppy dog, Slade cocked his head to one side. “What…are you?”

The counselor was taken aback. His eyes returned to normal. “Goodness me. I could ask you the same question.”

Blythe and his bodyguards headed through the double doors.

“You know,” Gunther said. “I could use a drink myself.”

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BQB Calls the Super Bowl

Hey 3.5 readers.

Good news. I was hired to provide the play by play for the Super Bowl.  Yes, the NFL wanted to save some money so they hired a nerd who knows nothing about sports.

Here goes nothing.

Yes, ladies and gentlemen welcome to Super Bowl 50.  That’s right.  The only sports contest thats too old to hang out in the club, but not old enough for an AARP card.

I’m Bookshelf Q. Battler and I don’t know a damn thing about sports, but I was happy to take this job in exchange for $50 and an autographed picture of some football guy whoever the hell he is I don’t know they all look the same to me.  The signature looks real though so I’ll probably sell it on ebay.

And the sporting contest has begun!  Yes!  Two teams of large men, each from different geographic locations have met on the gridiron and you, the viewer at home, will be called upon to cheer for the team closest to your geographic location or else be considered a smelly communist.  Yes, that’s right, if you watch anything else but this sporting contest tonight you’re an automatic a-hole.

And the ball has been kicked!  Yes the ball has been kicked!  And now men are fighting for control of the ball!

Yes and…oh my God!  Oh my God!  One of the men has the ball and he’s running toward the opposing team’s side of the field.  That’s right folks!  If he gets the ball all the way across the opposing team’s side of the field then it’s a goal for the team of the man running with the ball.

Mother of God the man with the ball has been tackled to the ground!  He’s not running with the ball anymore.  Yes, this is quite a sporting contest and all kinds of sporty shit is happening.

By the way, I’d like to take a moment to thank our sponsor, Cheesy Munch Chips.  That’s right.  While all of you fat, middle aged people sit on the couch and live out your NFL fantasies, flagellating yourselves over what you could have done better when you played for your high school team a million years ago, be sure to numb the pain by tossing a sack full of Cheesey Munch Chips down your gullet.

And back to the action.  There seems to be quite a scramble for the ball.  Possession of the ball, by the way, is very important because whichever team controls the ball has the ability to score a point and as you’re all aware, the team with the highest number of points at the end of the game wins and the team with the least amount of points will be treated like pathetic losers and will have to go home to their mansions and cry on their piles of money to comfort themselves.

Who has the ball now?  Yes it is…that guy!  That guy that everyone likes!  He’s in that funny commercial.  Whoa!  But he just passed it to that guy that was caught on tape punching his girlfriend’s lights out.  Yes, he was suspended for an entire fortnight.  That’ll teach ’em.

Sweet Jesus, and now that guy has passed it to that guy who was arrested after the gun fell out of his sweat pants in the night club.  Holy Shit, why can’t all of these athletic one percenters handle their shit?

And the ball’s getting closer and closer and….huzzah!  That team scored a point!

Ladies and gentlemen, such a rousing game.  I’m so excited.  I hope all you fat bastards at home are having a good time shoving chicken wings into your face holes and trying to feel better about not making the varsity cut when the first George Bush was president.

Now it’s time for the halftime show.

Wow!  It’s that Hot Pop Star Chick with Enormous Boobs!  She’s singing a catchy song that you’re all going to download immediately, hum in the back of your head for three months, and then forget all about it when the Next Hot Pop Star Chick with Enormous Boobs comes along.

Wait a minute.  What?! It’s not enough to have a Hot Pop Star Chick with Enormous Boobs!  That’s right, they’ve rigged the Hot Pop Star Chick with Enormous Boobs up to a crane and an elaborate system of ropes and pullies to make it seem as though she’s flying through the air like Peter Pan.

Yes, nothing says “America loves its musical talent” like forcing them to put their lives in danger just to provide us with a few minutes of entertainment.  God Bless you, Hot Pop Star Chick with Enormous Boobs.

Holy Smokes!  And now Controversial Rapper is here to provide a rap version of Hot Pop Star Chick’s song.  OH MY GOD! And now Country Band is here to countrify the shit out of this routine.

Yes, this is America and everyone has to be happy with everything!  Good God now there’s some glorious fireworks!  Whoa!  Watch out Hot Pop Star Chick, one of those whizzed right past you while you’re being held by wires at a ridiculously high altitude for America’s viewing pleasure.

What’s really amazing to me is that all of these stars are performing this number on an elaborate stage that totally moves around and shit.  It’s not like that’s a death trap waiting to happen or anything.

Hey, the commercials are on!  Howsabout these commercials, ladies and gentlemen?

Folks, I’m like you in that I’m on a budget and when I’m forced to make a decision, I always come down on the side of the brand with a hilarious talking cartoon animal, or a dumb guy that does dumb things to get a product, or stops doing dumb things once he gets the product, or a product that looks good when its held by Celebrity Hot Chick with Enormous Boobs.

Back to the big game.  Close up on some celebrities in attendance.  Yes, they’re just like you and me.  They love sports and they get to attend in person because they can afford the astronomical price for tickets while the rest of us sit on the couch and wished we lived like them.

And…points have been scored!  Repeat points have been scored!

This is so tense.  It really is.  Let’s get a close up of the coach barking orders at the players.

You know a lot of people ask me, “What’s the difference between the coach and the players?” and I always tell them, “The players try to score points while the coach tells them the best way to score the aforementioned points.”

Very subtle.  A lot of nuance I know.  But right now we can see the coach telling a player how to score points.  We don’t have a microphone on the coach so we can’t listen in but I can read lips so here’s what I believe is being said:

COACH:  I thought I told you to score some points!

PLAYER: I’m sorry, Coach.  I really tried to score some points.

COACH:  You need to try harder to score some points!  That thing you did before, that’s never going to score you any points!  But if you do this thing I’m telling you now, then you’ll score a lot of points!  Understand?

PLAYER:  Yes sir!

COACH:  Good! Now get out there and score us some points!

Holy Crap I was moved by that.

Points, points, so many points being scored by each side now.  And there’s a tie! Yes, each team has an equal amount of points.

Now, I’m no mathematical genius but I’d say that’s a problem.  Really, just on a statistical basis, a team with the most points is most likely to win and the team with the least amount of points is most likely to lose.  If I were a professional football player, I’d definitely want to be on the team that scores the most points.

We can see on the clock that there isn’t much time left so it all amounts to this one kick…and…the kicker is going to kick the ball and OH MY GOD!  THE KICKER KICKED THE BALL AND SCORED THE WINNING POINT!

What a game.  Half of the country is thrilled that the team closest to their geographic region has won.  It makes them feel like they did something by sitting on their fat asses for three hours instead of doing something productive like getting on the damn stair master or looking for a job.

Alas, the other half of the country is depressed that the team closest to their geographic team has lost.  They’ll blame it all on that one player who should have tried a little harder to score some more points.

What’s wrong with that guy?  Doesn’t he know he’s supposed to score points?

This has been BQB, reporting live from the Super Bowl.  Now stay tuned for an incredibly shitty show with beautiful people who pretend like their lives are horrible and tell jokes that aren’t funny and no one on the show is relatable to the average bloated ugly American slob.

It’ll be off the air in three months, but someone at the network really believed in it so he/she put it on after the Super Bowl in a desperate effort to ram it down everyone’s throats.

Enjoy!

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