RoadKill

Balancing baby Eliska on her hip, Loretta watched Junior tear through the yard, leaving squawking chickens and an irate rooster in his wake. "Wotcha got there, boy?"

Junior held aloft his prize. "Look at this, ma," he hollered excitedly.

"Where'd THAT come from?" asked Loretta, wrinkling her nose in disgust.

"Highway 154," answered Junior. "Lemme tell ya, ma..."

"Ya found it in the road?" Loretta demanded to know.

"Listen, ma...," began Junior, but Loretta cut him short. "You pitch it right now, boy, and then git inside and wash them hands. We ain't so poor that we hafta resort ta scavengin'...leastwise, not yet!"

"Lemme 'splain," begged Junior. "It ain't what ya thinkin' ma."

"Best do as I say, Junior," warned Loretta. "Ya knows how I feel 'bout backchat!"

She shifted the baby to her other hip and gave Junior "the look." The one that cautioned if he didn't do as she told him right quick, his pa would be taking off the belt soon as he got back from hunting coon.

Junior sure wasn't in the mood for no whipping. "Aw ma," he muttered, scowling and kicking up clumps of dirt.

Regretfully, he tossed the treasure into the bayou. He'd had to fight off boys way bigger than himself just to get near it, and he'd been real proud that he'd succeeded.

Most every kid from Sailes to Gibsland had wanted to pry that half-eaten sandwich from Bonnie Parker's fingers after them there Texas lawmen done shot her and Clyde stone dead.

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