Mudsock Theater Of The Mind, Part 3

The Travels of Omar and Butch, Episode 3

Note: Ever since I was a child I've wanted to produce my own radio play. This is a rough draft, but my goal was to have fun. Offered in the spirit of Old Time Radio shows like The Shadow and I Love A Myster, with a healthy dose of Dr. Who tossed in, I hope you will enjoy most thoroughly! And don't forget the plate of spaghetti!

P.S. - Some might accuse me of going a little overboard on this one. My response is: maybe. Maybe I did it. Maybe I did it with glee. Perhaps I did it with abandon. Heck, I might have done it with gleeful abandon.

Maybe.


The Travels of Omar and Butch

Episode 3: Children of Mercury Jump

Music Sting

Omar: Hello, everybody. My name is Omar. My friend Butch and I are travelers, adventurers if you will. We travel around, here and there, looking for people to help and adventures to join in. Sometimes we don’t have to look for adventure, sometimes it finds us.

Sound FX: Wind blowing hot and hard

Butch: We’ve been walking for a while.

Omar: Yes, quite a long time.

Butch: This area looks familiar. I’m probably going to regret this but where are we going?

Omar: Ah…

Butch: After all we’ve been through, Omar, I would think you wouldn’t hold out on me.

Omar: Yeah, look, about that…

Butch: Omar!

Omar: Look, mate, it’s been a long road and, well, a really long road.

Butch: Omar, I’m starting to get really angry.

Omar: (Pause, sighs) Barker is sending us to Mercury Jump.

Butch: What?

Omar: Butch…

Butch: No, it’s alright. I’ve only been gone for three years now, I think. Everyone probably thinks I’m dead. A little cruel, don’t you think?

Omar: Butch, it’s not my decision. If it had been up to me we would have gone back there a long time ago.

Butch: You know, Omar, even after all this time I still don’t know if I believe you.

Omar: All I’m saying is I’d hae done it different.

Butch: Okay. (Pause) It’s changed.

Omar: I’d expect so.

Butch: How do I look?

Omar: Your trousers are a bit dingy. Meeting anyone special?

Butch: I sure hope so.

Omar: As we walked into town, Butch just kept looking around. I will say this for Mercury Jump; it was just as mafted and windy as I remembered. We hadn’t even entered the town limits and I was right sponged. The note from Barker had left me feeling uneasy, I was never told what specifically I was supposed to be doing in any port I was sent to, and I never liked what happened to Butch, though he didn’t believe or quite trust me. But Butch was upright no matter what, so he kept plodding, probably hoping that eventually we would be doing exactly what we were doing now. And here we were, and he looked just as uneasy as I thought he would.

Butch: Do you think anyone will recognize me?

Omar: It’s only been three years, Butch. You don’t look that much older.

Larson: Butch? Is that you boy?

Butch: Look, it’s Old Man Larson! Hello, sir!

Larson: It must be you, Butch. Sure and no one else was ever that polite. Where you been?

Butch: It’s, ah, hard to explain. Is Cadha still living in the same place?

Larson: Aye, you know she is, lad.

Butch: Thank you, Mr. Larson. Uh, did she ever, you know…?

Larson: (Smiling) No, son, she never did. You would be a tough act to follow.

Butch: (Relieved) Thank you sir!

Larson: And are you going to introduce me to your friend?

Omar: Sorry, sir, Butch has been a little preoccupied. My name is Omar.

Larson: You look familiar. Weren’t you the one I saw Butch talking to just shortly before he disappeared?

Omar: Yes sir, I’d be the one.

Larson: And what would be bringing the two of you back after all this time? Many around here thought Butch was dead and resting with his ancestors!

Omar: We’re here to help, sir.

Larson: Aye, well then you’re in the right place. We’re needing your help, all right. Whatever you’ve got to give, at any rate. Sure and we’re needing somebody’s help.

Butch: (Slightly distracted) Yes sir, but if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go!

Omar: And with that, Butch literally ran off. I turned to the old man and asked him what kind of help the people of Mercury Jump needed.

Larson: Well, now, young man. Since last we laid eyes on Butchie, things have gone from bad to worse.

Omar: I don’t follow, sir.

Larson: I would expect. You were here once before at least, so I expect you do know that Mercury Jump is a mining town?

Omar: Yes sir, salt if I remember.

Larson: True, true, but since then we’ve also discovered gold!

Omar: Gold? If you don’t mind my saying, this doesn’t butcher’s hook to me like a gold town.

Larson: No, no it’s not. That’s because of who’s running the place.

Omar: Who would that be?

Larson: Humph.

Omar: Sir?

Larson: You’re a funny one, young man. In some ways you seem like you can see around a corner or two, maybe the seventh son of a seventh son…

Omar: Sir?

Larson: Well, you better just ask your friend, and Bob’s your uncle!

Omar: The old man told me how to find Butch’s house, and I went straight there. I found him with Cadha, his wife. I knocked on the door and was told to go away, but I was insistent.

Butch: (Opening door) Omar, I want to be with my wife!

Omar: I’d be gobsmacked if you didn’t, but we have work to do.

Butch: Omar!

Omar: I was going to argue with him some more, but then I heard sobbing from inside the house. Looking, well, I’m not sure how to describe it, Butch pushed open the door and let me see his beautiful wife Cadha, sitting in a chair and crying.

Cadha: I’m afraid, Butch!

Butch: Cadha, I’m back! You don’t have to be afraid anymore!

Cadha: Butch, I’m afraid because you’ve got to go do this, and then I’m afraid you’ll disappear again! I can’t stand losing you a second time!

Butch: You won’t lose me again! I won’t lose you again!

Omar: Pardon me, but what is this we’ve got to do?

Butch: The children have disappeared. My child has disappeared.

Omar: I thought about it for a moment. Then I turned to Cadha and asked her if the lads had gone to one of the mines.

Cadha: Yes, but how did you know?

Omar: Mr. Larson mentioned something about it. I’m trying to put the pieces together. Did you know they discovered gold here, Butch?

Butch: Yes, Cadha told me. It was what happened afterwards that I’m concerned about.

Omar: What would that be?

Cadha: Shockley took over the town. All the men who had been working the gold mine? He hired some of them as thugs and then forced all the others to work the salt mine. He rounded up all the children over five years old and he makes them work the gold mine!

Omar: Was Shockley always so nice?

Butch: Yes, but he never was able to make people do what he wanted before.

Omar: But now he can?

Butch: Obviously.

Omar: Butch, I’m sorry, but we’ve got to go.

Butch: Why? Why don’t you go do this yourself? You were already doing it by yourself the first time you came here.

Omar: Butch, your coat’s already dingy.

Cadha: What does that mean?

Omar: Butch just looked at me, deciding whether to do what he wanted to do or what needed to be done. Finally he turned to Cadha and said:

Butch: I’m sorry, Honey. I’ve got to go.

Cadha: Where are you going, Butch? Can’t you just stay for a little while?

Butch: I want to, Cadha, I want to so badly. But if nobody’s been able to do anything about it before, then I’ve got to be the one. I’ve got to go.

Cadha: Don’t go, Butch! I really couldn’t stand to lose you again!

Butch: You won’t, Cadha! I’ll be back. And I’ll bring our son with me!

Omar: We started off, Cadha weeping behind us. I looked back several times, but Butch never did. He just pulled his wide-brimmed hat down over his eyes to protect them from the noon-day sun, adjusted his pack and kept walking. I’d been to Mercury Jump before but I depended on Butch to give me the guided tour. I asked him what his son’s name was.

Butch: Lucas, but we call him Luke.

Omar: How old you reckon he’d be?

Butch: Well, he was two when I left.

Omar: Right. So which mine you reckon we should go to?

Butch: Oh come on, Omar!

Omar: Right.

Butch: Come on, let’s keep walking.

Omar: And with that we set off for the gold mine. It wasn’t rocket science, really. Shockley would be where the kids were because they would be harder to control. He was probably keeping the men at the salt mine in line by threatening their kids. We walked for about an hour in miserable heat and wind, until we reached a rocky, hilly country. The dust was horrible, it was everywhere.

Butch: We’re getting close.

Omar: All right, but I feel like we’re being watched. Who is this Shockley, anyway?

Butch: He’s a man who always wanted to run things, by hook or by crook.

Omar: Looks like he made it.

Butch: Yeah, but I’m going to take him down.

Omar: Get ‘em, tiger! By the by, mate, has it always been this dusty here?

Butch: No, it hasn’t. In three years, a lot can change.

Omar: Don’t go to pieces on me now. Let’s get the git first, then you can break down.

Butch: (pause) Roger that.

Omar: “Roger that.” You do talk funny.

Sound FX: Wind blowing.

Omar: As we walked on farther and farther, I could see the wheels turning in Butch’s bonce. He’d been gone for three years. A mine that hadn’t existed before now was pulling one of the most precious and sought after metals in the universe out. I wondered how much was coming out, since none of the wealth was reflected in the town.

Butch: Mercury Jump was kind a humble place before, when I lived here.

Omar: Yeah, mate, but it’s looking pretty shabby now. You reckon much is coming out of the ground?

Butch: We’ll find out. Let’s stop here for a minute.

Omar: Butch pulled the Examiner out of his pack and snapped it on. The unmistakable noise it made could be barely heard, but it was there. A little comforting, really.

Butch: All the dust is interfering with the reading. The mine is pretty close; I read a lot of activity about a click and a half over that way.

Omar: The dust was kicking up bad as I asked him if there was anyone close by.

Butch: Can’t tell, Omar. But I’ve got a bad feeling.

Omar: What you mean, Butch?

Butch: My gut is telling me that someone is watching us.

Omar: Think you ought to try running the Jammer?

Butcher: Yeah, let me get it out.

Omar: The Jammer had a lower pitch than the Examiner. The problem with running it was they sometimes cancelled each other out.

Butcher: We’re not totally blind.

Omar: What do you mean?

Butch: I’ve got the reader with me, it’s a more primitive version of the Examiner. It still works okay if the Jammer is running.

Omar: He got the Reader out of the pack and put the Examiner away. The Reader was a good bit bigger than the Examiner, which I’d never thought of as the most elegant equipment before that, but I had new respect for Butchie’s engineering capabilities.

Butch: I think the main building is just over this hill.

Omar: If you can call it that. (Wind FX) We reached the top of the hill, and it was just amazing what we saw. I’d never seen a house like it before. It was an absolute mansion, made of the most magnificent wood, stone and gold.

Butch: Well, we know where the trees all went to now, don’t we?

Omar: Sock up, I think I hear something. (Wind FX) Butch looked at the reader and tapped it a couple of times.

Butch: Well, I told you the dust was interfering with the readings.

Omar: Let me guess, we’re surrounded by men?

Butch: They’re actually less than fifteen feet away.

Omar: Oh! That’s brilliant! Should we run?

Hench 1: Top of the morning to you gentlemen!

Omar: (Pause) And a merry rest of the day to you, sir!

Hench 1: Would you care to accompany me and the boys to the main house, if you’d be so kind?

Omar: Certainly it wasn’t as if we had a choice. We followed him, while a few men walked with him and a few behind us. One of them relieved Butch of the Reader, which he had already turned off. For some reason, nobody took his pack, and even over the wind I could still hear the Jammer running. They took us in to the house, which was remarkably cool compared to the outside. We followed them down several hallways to a large room with a table and chairs. A wine flask was on the table, and a glass half full.

Hench 1: Cennas (k-yown-is) we found these gentlemen wandering about the estate, if you take my meaning.

Shockley: Yes, what! Oh, oh my! Thank you, that will be all.

Hench 1: A couple of other things, Cennas.

Shockley: Really? What could they possibly be?

Hench 1: Well, sir, one of the lads took this from Mr. Butchie, here. And also…

Shockley: What is it? Hand it here at once!

Hench 1: As you wish, sir.

Shockley: Well, Mr. Butchie, what have we here?

Butch: Why would I tell you?

Shockley: Well, suit yourself, you always have. Still, this is quite remarkable. I knew you were working on things before your disappearance, but still…

Butch: Aren’t you even going to ask me where I’ve been?

Shockley: To be honest, I’m really not all that interested. But this, this interests me. Really, my good man, you simply must tell me what it is?

Butch: Umm, I don’t think so.

Shockley: But why ever not?

Butch: Because although I doubt that either you or any of your men are smart enough to figure it out and engineer something like it for yourselves, still I don’t want to take the chance.

Shockley: Ah, I see! Afraid I might find a way to adapt your superior technology to my nefarious activities, eh? What, have I not hit the nail on the head?

Butch: Something like that, yes.

Shockley: Hmm, well really no matter. You, Number One…

Hench 1: Aye, Mr. Shockley? Would you be wanting me to beat Mr. Butchie up a little for ye?

Shockley: Oh my goodness, no! Butch has always been upright and true blue and I doubt that a little physical discomfort will produce the results I wish for. Rather aggravating, really, but some people do require things to be done the hard way, yes?

Hench 1: Aye, sir. It does seem that way.

Shockley: Yes, well in any case, you know the child who runs the desk over at the gold mine?

Hench 1: Aye sir, I should think so.

Shockley: Yes, well go fetch him here. His name is Lucas, I think that Mr., ah, Butchie here will be very interested indeed about this.

Hench 1: Aye, Mr. Shockley. I’ll be fetching the boy back directly.

Shockley: Yes, you do that.

Omar: To his credit, Butch took it. He didn’t say anything, and except for a clenching of his jaw, which I don’t think they saw, he didn’t betray any feelings. It wasn’t long before Shockley’s “Number One” came back, dragging a boy who bore a startling resemblance to Butch into the room by his ear. Shockley circled the boy several times and seemed to be considering him when he asked the boy his name.

Lucas: You know my name already, sir!

Shockley: Ah, very good! Did any of you notice, gentlemen, how the boy openly defies me yet at the same time seems to maintain respect for his elder, the man who holds the lives of not only this pathetic little urchin, but also his mother and father.

Lucas: Father? You’re lying!

Butch: No, son, he’s not.

Lucas: What do you mean? Who are you?

Shockley: Dear lad! Don’t you even recognize him? It’s true that he’s been gone for three years, but still!

Lucas: (Hesitantly) Father?

Butch: Yes, Luke, it’s me.

Lucas: Daddy!

Omar: The boy rushed to Butch and they hugged each other fiercely. Shockley looked on with amusement, the other men had a mixture of emotions. Then Shockley snapped his fingers.

Shockley: Take the urchin back to his desk and make sure he stays there!

Hench 1: As you wish, sir!

Butch: So is this what you’ve done to all the men?

Shockley: No, no, no! Not all of them, but certainly enough. Now, will you help me or does your lovely wife also need to be involved?

Butch: You wouldn’t!

Shockley: Oh wouldn’t I? Don’t think for one moment that I didn’t have to give a display to the men in order to get them all in line! So don’t push me, Mr. Butch!

Omar: I walked over and touched Butch on the arm, telling him that I thought Shockley was serious. Shockley nodded.

Butch: All right, Shockley, but I don’t think I need to tell you what I’ll do if you hurt my wife or boy.

Shockley: Yes, yes, yes! Personal mutilation and horrible pain, all that! Do I need to tell you what will happen to all those children if you don’t do what I say?

Omar: Just then one of the other henchmen pointed to us to go. We followed him along on the trip from the salt mine to the gold mine. On the way we talked. (Sound FX: Wind) Tell me, what’s your name?

Hollister: Me name?

Omar: Well, yes. It would be nice to know.

Hollister: Me name is Hollister, if that means anything.

Butch: Frank Hollister?

Hollister: Yeah, that’s right. (Pause) Used to deliver the milk and bread to your house every morning.

Butch: Yeah! I remember that!

Hollister: Yeah, Butchie, you was kind of the golden boy. What happened? Where did you go?

Butch: I’m still not sure, Mr. Hollister.

Hollister: (pause) It’s all right. Call me Frank. Everbody does. Anyways, what you mean you’re still not sure?

Butch: I mean that…

Omar: (Interrupting Butch) What he means is that I came along and snatched him.

Hollister: Snatched him? That don’ make no sense!

Butch: He didn’t snatch me. He came here about three years ago to help out Widow Tinsley…

Hollister: Wider Tinsley? Aye, yeah I remembers her.

Butch: Anyway, he needed my help, but then when it was over I found out that I was somehow on the wrong side of Mercury Pass.

Hollister: Oi! How did you get all the way over there?

Butch: Well, I’m not really sure. It involved a rock slide…

Omar: Yes, and three angry dogs…

Butch: Yeah, and a really big balloon…

Omar: And a plate of spaghetti.

Hollister: Spaghetti? I haven’t seen that in over five years!

Butch: I told you it’s hard to explain.

Hollister: Don’t kick about it mate, I don’t need to know that bad.

Butch: Well I do. How in the world did Shockley, of all people, take over the town?

Hollister: You mean why didn’t some of us men folk band together and drive him out?

Butch: Well, yeah, something like that.

Hollister: Well, you know, he didn’t do it all at once. You know that most of us here has families of our own, just like you.

Butch: Yeah.

Omar: Yes.

Hollister: Well, when the gold was discovered, we all thought we had really dug something up!

Omar: So to speak.

Hollister: Yeah! Well, anyway, we needed to organize and be able to dig both mines at the same time, right?

Butch: That makes sense.

Hollister: Yeah, and at first some of our wives was digging, but they needed to stay home and take care of the young ‘uns.

Omar: Okay.

Hollister: And bit by bit, Shockley kept coming up with ideas that sounded pretty good. He talked us into putting younger and younger kids to work, helping out. Then one day, some of the rousters..

Omar: Rousters?

Butch: Miners with no families. There were only a couple, but they got together and kept rousting when they weren’t working, you know getting drunk and being pretty obnoxious.

Omar: Ah!

Hollister: Yeah, at any rate he keeps finding more rousters, so now’s he’s got as many of them working for him as there is of us family men.

Omar: His own little army.

Hollister: On the nose there, mate. Anyway, it weren’t no bodge job, he took his time and done it right. What’s your handle, by the by?

Omar: Me? My name is Omar. Good to meet you.

Hollister: Likewise, and best of Mercury to ya. (Laughs. Omar and Butch also laugh.)

Butch: Any brilliant ideas?

Hollister: Hey now, who’s Barker?

Butch: That’s part of the long story.

Omar: Cave in the gold mine.

Hollister: Come again? What’s this bollocks?

Butch: I gotta agree with you there.

Hollister: Now hold on, mates!

Butch: Look, if the mine gets caved in, then Shockley loses his real base of power, right?

Hollister: Well, yeah, but come on!

Butch: So we get the children out and cave the mine, then Shockley’s army will desert him.

Hollister: I don’t think it’s quite that easy, ya know?

Omar: Pretty close, actually. Look, the town doesn’t exactly look like a boom town, does it?

Hollister: Well, uh, no.

Omar: Nor do Shockley’s henchmen dress particularly well. In fact, all the gold seems to have gone into his house if I’m not mistaken.

Hollister: So what you’re saying is…

Omar: I think they’ll strip his house and run off. By the by, Butchie…

Butch: Yeah?

Omar: Where did you come from? Everyone else around here talks normal, but you still talk funny.

Hollister: Yeah, isn’t that the truth! (Pause) But hey! How do you propose to pull this little scheme orf, anyway?

Omar: How many children are down in the mine?

Hollister: Well, now, he usually keeps about ten working the earth.

Omar: I can get them out. If we can get some of the dynamite he uses, Butch can set them off.

Hollister: Without getting himself killed?

Omar: Yeah, mate! And we can put paid to this!

Hollister: Well, I’m up for it, then! My own little Frankie is in the mine right about now!

Omar: And with that, he lead us to the mine. Lucas was there, and a couple of guards as well, but we didn’t see the one who had brought Lucas back from Shockley’s house. Butch told Lucas to go into the mine and get all the children together, and be ready to run. We noticed that there were two or three men at the mouth of the cave, we hoped there wouldn’t be too many more inside. Lucas slipped in easily enough, then I went to work. Walking over to the cave, I picked one of the men and asked, “Excuse me, but did you know there’s a giant bug on your head?” Grunting, he grabbed at his hat and shook it, which gave me the chance I needed. As I was taking care of the first one, Butch ran out of the shed and took care of the other one.

Butch: Brilliant! Well, they keep some dynamite in the

Omar: You seen Hollister?

Butch: Yeah, he ran off, so we don’t have much time.

Omar: Brilliant, mate!

Butch: Yeah, I know.

Omar: Butch ran into the mine while I took care of a couple of stray guards who ran over. I wondered why Shockley was paying for such miserable jobs as these. A couple of minutes later Butch ushered about a dozen kids out of the mine.

Butch: All right, I’ve gotten the children out and planted the explosives. Never seen dynamite like that before. In any case, I’m ready to blow it up now.

Shockley: No you don’t!

Omar: Shockley and his main henchman came running over the hill full tilt. I hadn’t thought Shockley looked all that imposing but when he slammed into Butch the two of them went sprawling. The bad part was that he knocked Butchie’s sack right off his back and it went flying. I saw all this but then I had my own problem to deal with and so I couldn’t jump over and make sure the Examiner and the Jammer were both okay.

Hench 1: I would appreciate if you not give us any trouble, sir.

Omar: It doesn’t bother you to do this to children?

Hench 1: Honestly and personally, it does tug at me heart. But I can’t let that stop me from doing me job, if you take my meaning.

Omar: On the one hand I think he really was polite, but on the other he was trying to keep me distracted until others could arrive. Butch had problems of his own.

Shockley: You sanctimonious drone!

Butch: (Grunts) Drone?

Shockley: That’s correct, you sniveling jackanapes!

Butch: (Grunts) Shockley, I’ve done a few things I’m not proud of, but I’ve never sniveled! (Sound FX hitting) And you’ve toughened up a bit, haven’t you? I remember you used to be the one who sniveled!

Shockley: You slanderous malcontent! I made this town into what it is!

Butch: It’s nothing, Shockley! Just like your soul, it’s nothing! You’ve made it into your own image!

Omar: Then with a scream of primal rage, Shockley jumped on Butch and the two of them rolled around in the dirt. I was busy taking care of my problem, when I realized that we were surrounded by Shockley’s helpers. I tried to get Butch’s attention.

Butch: Not now, Omar!

Omar: I think you better look behind us!

Shockley: At last! It’s about time you lot arrived! Now I can finish things properly!

Omar: As everyone just stood back, Butch and Shockley circled each other. Both had small cuts and gashes on them, their trousers were torn and they were breathing heavily.

Butch: I admit, you’ve gotten a lot tougher since the last time I was here!

Shockley: You were always the golden boy, but I was always your better!

Hench 1: Don’t act the gom, finish it!

Shockley: You be quiet, I’ll deal with you after I deal with my old friend Butchie!

Omar: The two of them circled each other, studying the other man and trying to find the weakness they could exploit.

Hench 1: Don’t be foostering about!

Shockley: You’ve gotten a bit cheeky! I will deal with you presently!

Omar: All the others had gotten so involved in the fight between Butch and Shockley that they didn’t notice me as I slipped away, going over to the mouth of the mine where Butch’s sack had been flung when Shockley jumped him. I picked it up but just as I was about to fish the Examiner out, a hand grabbed my wrist.

Hollister: Begging your pardon, Mr. Omar, but I can’t let you do that!

Omar: But Hollister, if we don’t collapse the mine, then it’s just a matter of time before Shockley rounds up your children and puts them back to work!

Hollister: Begging your pardon, but can’t Butchie defeat Shockley?

Omar: One on one? Doubtless, but in case you’ve forgotten we’re outnumbered six to one and there's no thinking about it!

Hollister: What I’m thinking about is that Shockley will kill me boy!

Omar: Listen to me, Mr. Hollister! If Shockley wins today, he will kill all the children! It may not be today or tomorrow, but as surely as the sun rises and sets, he will kill them. Now let us do this!

Sound FX (Wind blowing)

Omar: Hollister let go of my hand. Rifling the sack, I found the Examiner and yelled over to Butch, “Is this it? Which button do I push?”

Shockley: Shouldn’t look away, Butchie!

Sound FX: (Hard blow)

Butch: (Slightly dazed) Thanks, Omar!

Omar: Sorry, mate! But which button?

Butch: Is it the Examiner?

Omar: Yes!

Butch: Then it’s the green one!

Omar: I pushed it but nothing’s happened!

Butch: Yes it did, just wait.

Sound FX: (Rumbling)

Shockley: No! You can’t do it, I won’t let you!

Omar: And with that, Shockley ran into the mine. I’m not sure what he was expecting to do, perhaps pull the explosives out, but it was only a few seconds and then the mine collapsed in dirt and smoke.

Hench 1: Well, come on lads. Cennas made a terrible hames of this but we can still get paid!

Omar: And with that, all the men except Hollister ran off to strip the gold and whatever else they could get from Shockley’s house. With Hollister and the children, we made our way back to Mercury Jump, where Butch and Lucas were reunited with a frantic Cadha. I spent a few days resting, Cadha is a wonderful cook, but one day I found a note in my pocket.

Butch: A note from Barker?

Omar: Yeah, time to be moving on, new people to help.

Butch: Yeah…

Omar: I always knew this day would come. Although I’ve always been sorry that you got dragged into things, I am right glad to have known you. You take care of that wife and son, all

Butch: I will. We need to get the salt mine working better, the families are already organizing for it.

Omar: And I’m sure they want you to lead them, right?

Butch: (Sheepishly) Yes, they do.

Cadha: And I can’t think of a better man for it, can you?

Omar: No, ma’am. I certainly can’t.

Sound FX: (Wind)

Omar: I shook hands with Lucas and Cadha even gave me a hug. Then Butch and I stood for a moment.

Butch: It’s time for you to be going.

Omar: Yeah, Butchie. See you around. And Cadha?

Cadha: Yes?

Omar: Teach this man how to talk proper, right?

Cadha: (Laughs) I will! Now don’t be a stranger!

Omar: And with that I was off. I wasn’t sure where Barker was sending me or how I would get along without Butch, but I’d been doing it for years before I met him and I supposed I could get along without him again. It was right for him to find his wife, who’d staid faithful for three years and seemed to bear no grudge. Three years the two of us had been knocking about, going where help was needed. It seemed so long at the time, but it sure seemed short now.

Announcer: This has been The Travels of Omar and Butch. Episode Three: The Children of Mercury Jump has been our pleasure to present to you as a production of Mudsock Theater of The Mind. Good evening.



copyright (C) 2012 christopher w neal all rights reserved


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