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Pawn takesKing part 33

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The next morning, after the biscuit breakfast, Donny sought out Eugene. His house was just a hop, skip, and jump away. A few blocks later, Donny arrived at the dilapidated home. He knocks. After a series of thudding footsteps, Eugene answers.
    "Donny!!" Eugene cries out happily. He gives a bro hug, with a fist clenched between them as they embrace.
    "How ya doin', Mean Gene?"
    "Not too bad," Eugene says, stepping away from the door to let Donny in. Eugene looked freshly scrubbed for once, wearing a grungy blue bathrobe. The yellow in his dreads had faded, only reaching the outward tips now.
    "I was just stopping by to ask you," Donny says, "are you holding again?"
    WIthout speaking, Eugene smiles insanely, and holds up what looks to be a pound of weed in a gigantic Ziploc baggie.
    "Right on!!" Donny says, rubbing his palms together.
   
    Donny was ripped. His timing couldn't have been better. Eugene had rooted out the snitch who narced him off. It turns out the rat was one of the guys scheduled to move in with Eugene. Donny did not ask any details about how Eugene found this fellow out, or what the dude's fate was. Donny still remembered the gun Eugene had pulled out to show off.
    As Donny made the trip across town, he whistled to himself. The song "Let it Snow" rang out almost by itself, through Donny's pursed lips. Despite the accumulation last night, it was nice weather. The sky was blue, and the weed was green. Donny entered the Pawn and Payday feeling calm and collected.
    Greg had done some handiwork repairing the door. A metal mesh was welded to the doors frame, instead of replacing all the glass. The hinges had been fixed, but squealed like a dying cat when opened. The door was also much heavier with the reinforcement added, but it was in better condition than it had been, hanging off like a half-pulled tooth.
    Eugene said he would sell, but only to Donny. It took a little bit of convincing (and a promise not to run off with the money) but Greg forked over the $60 to Donny. Feeling imbued with this task, Donny fast-walked over to Eugenes, and made it there in record time. Eugene once again gave Donny a fat sack, charging only the swag prices. It gave Donny much joy to return to Greg not only with the marijuana, but half of his money, as well.
    "Do you have an outlet you can use on that gazebo?" Greg inquires.
    "Uhâ¦yeah, there's one setup for public bands and families to use on outings." Donny says.
    Greg grabs down what looks like a metallic box from the upper shelf. It is a space heater.
    "It's yours, if you want it." Greg says,"I can't sell the fucking thing"
Donny is beside himself. The one possession he has strived toward for months is now his in the blink of an eye.
    "I'm getting out of the selling business." Greg says, gesturing all around at his useless plethora of used goods,"Everything must go."
    Before taking off, Donny is also given a thick army sleeping bag. Greg explains it was his fathers. Since his dad is gone, Greg is looking just to thin out the clutter in his store. Donny feels tears itching at his eyes. They were joyous tears, though. Greg was a good man, this proved it beyond a shadow of a doubt.
   
    The space heater worked wondrously. Donny fed the power cord through the lattice, up to the outlet rigged there. He couldn't describe the emotion he felt when the switch was first turned on, and the heat started blowing. As he dangled his feet in front of the appliance, he was reminded of the house he grew up in. On cold winter days, Donny would grab a blanket and drape it over the heating duct on the wall. It felt amazing to warm ones feet in such a way. He always chose to sit by the second store window, where the vent blew. It afforded him a picturesque view of the falling snow. Cars on the street below would trudge past, billowing exhaust into the frosty air. The old house was his icy kingdom.
    The gazebo was not a second home, but it would suffice. To his amusement, he found himself sweating after prolonged exposure to the heater. He only had to run it every once in awhile, before finding himself in a tropical heat wave. Yes!! Thank you, Greg. You are a champion. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.
    Things sped up once Greg returned. Donny felt as though he should stick by Greg. Down on his luck or not, Greg was a motivated individual. As Donny returned to the Pawn and Payday, Greg was watching the news on every TV left in the joint. It was as if the TV's were a generator for Greg's kharma. They were fired up, reminding the universe of what Greg had done. But the guy deserved to celebrate his achievement. Donny watched Greg's exploits play out on various displays. They also smoked some more pot, with Greg making sure the doors to the store were locked.
    Stacy, the rising star anchorwoman, colored Greg in a sympathetic light. Donny couldn't believe they showed the shooting on local TV. They could see Jessie's blood spattering all over, narrated by the plucky reporter. It was in black and white, but didn't require much imagination for the gore. Greg didn't exactly cut the figure of the knight on a white horse. He stumbled through the store, getting his butt cheeks blasted by Jessie's gun. Donny found it strange to be in the same room where this epic battle unfolded. The bullet holes and broken windows suddenly seemed to pop out at Donny.
    Greg was now a celebrity. Kinda. What a creepy thing to be famous for. Donny wondered how many viewers knew Greg's name and deeds now.Would it increase business? Could such a heinous battle improve sales? What a marketing gimmick.
    The news program has the shooting as the main story. Afterward, Donny and Greg sit in silence. Greg is upset that no mention to Robert is given. Robert is the guy who was shot in the chest by Jessie.
    "hey" Greg says angrily, "they didn't say anything about Robert!! the guy got shot on account of me, and they don't even so much as mention his name!!"
Greg is determined to visit his fallen friend tomorrow, and Donny agrees to tag along, upon Greg's request.

artman4444 Uploaded 02/05/2013
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