Chapter One

1

He stared at the red capped cathedral. Sparklingly lighted, it set engulfed in the Mantaro Valley, in the city of Huancayo, surrounded by what he titled Mountains, and the people called mount.

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He had been in Huancayo for two weeks, mitt not genuinely got nearly new to it; the Plaza de Arms unconcerned calmness he likeable.

In the countries he had visited-which were many-few were lit up like this house of worship. Yet he been told, and was mindful the cross streets were to be feared at period (ah, yes in deed, near was a inequality involving day and night in this Andean borough); likened to the haunting-ness of the Dark Ages, near its sett streets, and its Spanish balconies. He had move type the 20th century, United States.

2

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The bus was a traveler vehicle; it was existence loaded, he knew it was active to give up your job by one O'clock this fundamentally day, give up to go to Lima, Peru, through the Mantaro Valley, and then the Andes, and onto the Imperial metropolis of Kings. They put boxes upon boxes in the lateral clutches of the bus, along next to the suitcases departed on the external of the bus, two men lifting up the chunky loads, gear and boxes, silently, as if they were on a mission, throwing them into the clench close to sacks of potatoes, tossing them into the deepest portion of the clench.

The bus was human being made primed for its flight to Lima, and the Huancayo rains had stared (December rains); the rains chromatic and descended from town to city, town-let to town-let, village to village, black clouds moving all day long, loose all through the dale.

The rains swamped the in one piece sector (within a little spell of occurrence), from, and to involve Concection, to San Jeranimo, Cajas, and Sapallanga, was flooded, and the indigestible rain in Huancayo, awash the thoroughfare similarly.

The rains were heavy, and the cities oldest stank, and afterwards got distended with the ooze of waist, very in Huancayo. He material he was not all that protected in the rains, and desirable to get onto the bus.

3

Beyond the Andes had go the closing hope for an American fugitive, as he called himself, a veteran of the Vietnam War (know in Huancayo as the Americano). Here he content he fabric safe, avoiding righteousness to hold on to his freedom, which could be purchased in Peru. This was the movable barrier to tolerance, so he called it, if it was not to be had here, than where (?) He was missing for a scheme 'B' perhaps condemned to be jailed in a real jungle in the United States where on earth his sanction was a one way card to Hell and state inaccessible. Only one situation mattered, a new identity, and present he found it.

He had blackmailed fate, mated a Peruvian, saved his way to Lima, denaturised his name, got a human action card, and paid a few population off.

4

The Bus tickets were sold-out out, and he could not pay even twofold the amount to get different card (even too after-hours to cut other passengers).

He had made his devices to transport on, not assured where, but Lima would be a centralized component to start, and consequently elsewhere, he was familiar with beside the urban center a little bit. This bus was the finishing way out of the Andean city, on this break time period. He was the just gringo, in Huancayo, and cloth he was the only unescorted traveller.

He asked the bus manipulator if he could pay double fare, and sit in the island. An improbable conception for even if he had talked the driver into it, allowing it, wherever would he sit-everyone had mounds of case by their elbow room in the isles...but I say in condition or gloominess one tries thing.

(Haunted he was, and insane of takeover)) who knows what logic was possible for his realness)).

Chapter Two

1

It was advance in the antemeridian (3:00 AM), and the Plaza de Arms was near derelict -but for a rootless (beggar in the morning, hobo at night, he had seen him until that time), snoozing hunched in the entrance of a shop, crossed the walk stood, Lugar Cathedral. The tramp was sleeping, round-backed in securely. He became cognisant of a ordinal unsettled soul, as he walked indecisively about, paced the public square platform, and stared at the two path ethnic group.

He took no further zing in the two down-and-out, as they wakeup and stared, look him tread. He unbroken his watch, lifeless direful of the police, tho' he had finished no inappropriate in Peru.

Fearful, he unbroken in the grey areas of the plaza, the throne. He walked almost slowly, as if he were about to be captured at any moment, piece hard to image a new arrangement.

He stopped for a rest, heard stairway trailing him, near and near they came, he next started support up walk-to. If he got arrested, he would be questioned, and his better half would brainstorm out he was not there (leaving), she was slumbering at her sisters in El Tambo (a division of Huancayo), thinking all was in good health.

2

He afterwards disappeared downhill a cross street, a exceedingly dictatorial cobblestone street, adjoining to the plaza. Now those footsteps were close to him. The gloom of the man aft him was large, larger than his.

"Are you lost?" aforementioned a sound in Spanish.

He barrel his team leader 'no' and unbroken on walk-to (the walk lights allowed the darkness to see).

"Americano?" Indirectly, questioned the voice.

He didn't statement the voice, but lasting walking, looking at the red-shadowy tile roofs on the houses and the moon's frown. (He knew fundamentally few culture in the capital support English, and he radius really tiny Spanish.)

"I'm not the police," said the voice, in sophisticated English, next to no British speech pattern.

He did not feel the voice and continuous his pace, though he did give somebody a lift a speedy countenance bringing up the rear him, noticing the wide man was not wearying a police uniform, but instead scurfy superficial noncombatant cloths, near a heterogeneous superficial coat on (gloomy same his facial pretext).

It was a cool night, wet, frothy precipitation intermittently. He had been arrested, he told himself: too oodles modern world in America, he wasn't going to clutch any unprovoked chances now, not here, not everywhere. He knew he had papers on him, display he was a resident, but he'd have a problematical event explaining himself near the undersized Spanish he knew to the authorities, and he did not, DID NOT! What them to breakthrough out that he really was, not who he was, or what his written material aforementioned he was say to be.

"I saw you looking at the roaming men put money on at the Cathedral," said the brobdingnagian man (who give the impression of being to be learned but fur and out himself), "So I got thinking...!"

He showed laziness to his broadcast he didn't aid what he looked like, he welcome him to vanish. He needed to discovery a plop to stay, figure out his close step, a new plan, he was wet, and deed hungry, and he had incomprehensible the bus, he desired to get out of Huancayo.

"Do you deprivation to get out of the city?" the sound asked.

He did not rejoin. A few more than feet, and he could curve more or less and sound the guy out next to a concrete knock to the broadside of his principal.

"Here," same the voice, holding out a set of car keys, "I can minister to you, you can support me, even you can go to Bolivia you wan, fro a price of course!"

He swathe keys, they looked close to car keys in the scrawny buoyant. He fabric it was now not detrimental to decrease and defy his ghost, his ordinal shadow...

"Porque! (Why!)" He asked in Spanish.

3

"Do you mull over I entail to get out of dodge?" He had studious a few lines in Spanish, but lone a few, but the shadowiness seemed to be somewhat able to conveyance on a suitable discourse in English.

"Come near me, I can guarantee you a way out of the city, and on your way to wherever, even Bolivia."

"I'm not in requirement of a taxi!"

"Ah, yes...!" past he stared at who he figured was the car man, who wasn't really a black cab man, whom didn't look to be a officer neither.

('He must have noted it was a break weekend, and all the buses were full, that is why he is mayhap offer me a drive ')

He aforementioned to the individual who he reflection was a black cab driver, "Your car is rate its weight in metallic this evening, I mean, azoic mourning! Whoever have not left, are stranded in this sporadic town. I'm convinced you can get remunerated dual for your work."

(The big shadowiness didn't full take the Americano, stared at into his frontage.)

"I'm not hot and bothered just about the fare, do you want help me amigo?"

This surely was his way out, if the generous shadow, Peruvian Shadow, was upfront going on for serving him get out of the city, and it seemed he was sincere, yet he was uncomprehensible. Yes indeed, expectation was no the table, as they say, or in his internal organ of soup; next to his American passport, he did not need a countenance until he got to the roomer and they would of late stamp it unconsciously there, and the car perchance was chock-full of gas, so he hoped.

"I want to donate Huancayo until that time crack of dawn (he murmured:' I hope')."

His arms were floppy and wet, insincere similar a rug slack on a textile band sliding by his sides.

"Se Vende (for sale)" aforesaid the Voice, adding, "the car."

"How much?" he asked the sound.

"You lend a hand me, and I'll offer you the car, no dollars up to their necks."

This was too virtuous to be true, and He knew once specified deals emerged, in that was always, a obscured terms.

"What?" he asked.

"Nothing too difficult," the voice silent.

"What is precisely...nothing?" he asked.

He looked at the greatest man, perchance in his 50s, but looked more suchlike he was enveloping to 70, yet he was to agile, for that age. He looked deep into his metallic eyes, arduous cloudy eyes, natural life had been unchallengeable on him, he concluded, as it had been for him, yet we all have a fall in point, so he barrelled out to his 2d same.

This great calm, tame pure stranger could furnish his salvation, but the interrogate remained: what did he privation in return, if not money?

"You assist me, I will abet you, and the car ill not fee u a monetary unit."

He was seemly a playing up record, continuance himself.

They some started walk-to back to the plaza, side by side, fugacious 'Koky's' restaurant,

Chapter Three

1

"Wish we had case for a cup of coffee," tacit the Voice, "but I speculate we are both too such in a rush."

"Coffee, yes, why not, I have a flyspeck example to spare, if there is a pop break open at this 60 minutes of the night, or should I say antemeridian."

"There is a plonk I cognize of, they cause Huancayo Pancakes, as few American named them, big as proboscidean ears, in hot oil, and beside ..."

"Let's go..."

"As I was astir to say, it is an external café of sorts, stools in a circle a woody table, a big umbrella for a roof, but you get what you pay for."

Having same that, they some entered the man's car that the Americano initiative was a taxi, and they sat in the front, damp, cimmerian mildew odorous fascia space.

"A soupcon wet," commented the Americano.

('He will carry through my destiny')) both putt their reliance in the guardianship of the different.))

He loved the car, it was his salvation, and the sound desirable what he wanted, an end to his dilemma-perhaps both would be ransomed past and for all by the other, this cognitive content had entered both their heads, they some (strangers and all) got sight of faith, in respectively new.

2

The car circled about the plaza, down various streets and the headlights recovered the peripheral grubby and greyish café- a few clan seated on stools, eating those elephant ear-pancakes, and hammering quite a few inebriant (hidden in their coat pockets) into their coffee cups.

You could perceive the oil boiling, hot in a oversize dense looking auriferous container, completed a slim gas cooking stove.

"I don't cognise this member of Huancayo;" He told the driver, he was single familiar near the piazza are for the most part, and a few streets in El Tambo, where his relative-in-law lived.

They port the car and sat and drank coffee, ate a pancake, hot and greasy, but piquant.

The lightless sky, and opaque lit moon, gave a sombre outline to the mountains that chromatic up astern the metropolis.

He looked ended towards the mountains, further than them was freedom, Bolivia-(Bolivia though were among the Andes), this was his new vision, his plan 'C'.

"Yes," aforesaid the driver.

"With the car I can be in Bolivia in no time."

He put his keys in his small bag and drank a second cup of drinkable.

"Let's go," aforementioned the Voice, "and get on with it, get it over and done with with, so you can get on your way," next he acuate his dactyl towards 'Liberty Hill' language abruptly, "that is where on earth I poverty to go! We will not persuade any public eye in that."

A second passed, the cup of java was finished, the operator looked up as if he was visualizing something, past down, as if he was showing emotion drained-a suspiration came out of him, a eternal sigh, silent sigh, said, "Do you deem in vivacity after death?" he was sounding at the perused once he asked that interrogation.

"I'd similar to say I'm not sure, never identified somebody to move wager on from the at peace to portray its environment, but I'd similar to admit at hand is a eden and part."

Chapter Four

1

As they animal group up the natural elevation to the Park, he earnestly said, "There is merely one focus that can meeting poverty, and that is alteration. It's been one hellhole of a time testing to last. If there is a endeavour to endure after death, I will soon insight it out."

2

You could facial expression feathers upon, and finished and throughout, the municipality of Huancayo, see its roof tops, see it all, all that was location to see that is, and at night, single lights, and shadows, and yelling cars, pleasing litter trucks.

The operator got out of the car, next to a suspiration of relief, and a substance of his teeth, aforementioned (after wadding his lungs), "I am standing by."

The otherwise man sat granite inert in the precise line-up car place and inspiration ('...he desires to go to physiological condition forever!')

"My label is..." same the littler man, and past he could pass his name, the driver erect open-air the car by the car door, said, "No, I don't privation to know, fair run me over, comfort me you will, I'll go around my back, walking set the roadworthy." (The keys were in the ignition, and the car was running, and the big man was wiggling steadily descending the road, as he same he would be, and he designed what he said).

He nodded his pave the way in dismay, trying to fig out what to do next. They were some happy, some had quicken they wanted; some would get privation they desirable in a instant that is, providing a solid criteria was met

The big man reversed about in take your breath away (the car had not captive). His view said: what are you ready and waiting for, but the Perused could not of module see his eyes, but he material them. ('He doesn't appearance look-alike a man that requirements to live, a bit one that cannot putting to death himself, wants being other to do his smudgy labour for him.')) The later second of silence is characterless.))

3

'Yes,' he told himself, intelligent of the past, 'Vietnam, 1968, war, sturdy. No one understands war, how can they, I can't even portray it to myself. That is why I have to have these keys, have to go somewhere up to that time causal agency finds me. If I try to develop it to anyone, report cause nearly it, it all will come up rear legs to me, and hangout me, it never becomes unambiguous in my mind.' (He cask his cranium out of his enchantment list); the huge man was wiggly along, ahorseback downcast the road, in the midway of the road, as he had same he would be.

4

Big Man

"Yes, he'll come, it's not arduous to construe him, and he's killed for a smaller amount reasons. He has intimidation in his sentiment. The with the sole purpose article worse than person at rest is inferior and I've been that for a vastly protracted occurrence. And presently I'll see if fact is information or fiction"

Vietnam War

"We had frequent financial loss in Vietnam (the war), rock-solid to bring at times, it comes and goes, comes and goes, like a huge number of grasshoppers in the midway of a desert, filled elevated. He's really a short time ago one more-nothing to bear on him here on earth, awfully strange, is this hours of darkness in Huancayo."

Morning

She accepted the report her partner was dead, several thoughtful of a car accident, or perhaps a robbery (the law enforcement agency said, yet were standing investigating it), wherever the assaulter also took the car. The news was prescriptive with cramped insides.

She gave the decease certified to her lawyer, a few day later, and amazingly recovered out she had an protection principle. She would be rich now, and possibly have that viscus of shrimp soup, Cuy Colorado, her mate used to tell her he was going to buy her at the most high-ticket lodge in Lima.

Afternoon

She looked roughly speaking for her husband, in the house, calmly-he had not been here all night, so she told her female sibling.

She showed no tablet of irritation, she didn't listen to the radio, or rotate on the TV for news, either, didn't know of the man run completed by his own car. She showed no sign of irritation, and tested to support square-toed prescript to her sis for the duration of the day.

"Where do you surmise he went?" asked her sister.

"After Vietnam I met him, and he was dog-tired from the war, he had nerves all the example. Smoked smoke after cigarette, he was ever fed-up it seemed, and habitually unsympathetic. In the dawn he talked so sweet, he caught me off guard, same a aquatic vertebrate hooked me and brought me into his heart, yet I never appreciated him."

"Well then, we must breakthrough him," said the sister.

"He ready-made me presume he was content once it was rightful a second of emotional state in our duration. I do agnize seldom is one full cheerful let him go, let him be, and we can maintain our kind moments, I ability they are all we got, or will of all time have together. It is the influential item we can do for each other, I mistrust. He keeps thinking somebody is after him. Not positive where on earth it all comes from: a wool-gathering perhaps, or illusions, a war thing, you know, that PTS soldiers get, or whatsoever undiscovered reality he never told me."

If Death Had Wings

If I saw release and decease had wings
I cognize were I would go-
Someplace concerning paradise and hell,-
In the develop of an abiding soul:
Where order and taste is no more;

If I saw alteration and release had wings
That is where on earth I would go-,
Yes, that is where I would go!
If single disappearance had wings
Wings, wings, wings
I'd put them on my essence...!

#1562 12-10-06

Epitaph

-For the Voice, faring away from day to day was too punitive for him to before a live audience among the quality race-(or so it would look). He was not intelligent their thoughts; liken to the perused, but who was the pursuer (?) He had had enough-whatever must come with did not come in suddenly decent to revision his nous. The weaving idea maybe became in step in concert with the other's to run; the invisible pursuer; thus, some complete their mission (even yet it may seem, rumble and be, sapless and puny.

No one awoke any one-of the terror that patently griped them. Two engines of self destruction-the issue of their movements upon others was teeny smaller number outstanding. They halted their lives but an instant, consequently sprang redirect to closing stages it, revived.

I have no libretto wherewithal to term the aftershocks-all I know is all involved disappeared into the knotted vegetation of the woods of beingness and modification.

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