Chapter 5 of The Stone of Tantalus is live!

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Here’s the first scene…

Miles hated Texas.  It was the only place in the world where you could drive a thousand miles on a single road and still be in the same damn state.  Driving his old Dodge Charger south on highway 35 toward Alvin after spending the morning in Houston gathering supplies, his anger mounted at the thought he would be late to his target.  There was a lot to prepare before completing his mission, but the drive times between locations were taxing.  Even without the goddamn traffic, the trip will eat up an entire fucking day just getting to the store and back.

This time of the year the sky was crystalline, and even with the chill in the air, the sun beat down with such vengeance the days were warm in defiance of the season.  Miles’ daddy used to say there were only two seasons in Texas: Hot, and Wet.  The old man would have called this an Indian Summer, but even though the time of year was right, there was no recent killing frost.  Days like today, though limited in number, seemed to make up for all the others.  It was why Miles took the top down on the car, and was now singing along with the radio to an old Eagles tune while flooring that bastard hard.

The old car was one of the few things he missed about this time in his life.  It never failed to cheer him up when he got the chance to wind that motor out, the huge four barrel carburetor sucking gasoline like a calf on its momma’s tit—just like God intended!  Give him a four-banger any day, and nothing short of a jet fighter could catch him.

As he neared Alvin, though, he pulled it back to legal speeds.  There was no sense in getting this close only to be pulled over and have some overeager cop find what he was carrying in the trunk.  No sir.  That would not be a good day for either of them.

Miles took the bypass around the main part of town, not wanting to encounter more police than necessary, and headed for the south side of town.  What he needed now was a quiet place to do some work uninterrupted, so he pulled in to the closest motel on the bypass and parked under the awning by the office door.  As he pushed the long and heavy car door open, he thought, Couple more hours, that’s allGet this shit done, then go back upstream to finish the job.

He smiled, slid the sunglasses up to bury them in his thick mane, pulled open the office door, and stepped across the threshold to the frigid interior.


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