The Dear Brother letters are my in character record of the terrifyingly cool Unknown Armies game run by the mysterious Canadian Rob. I’ve been writing ‘em for a while but never thought to put them on the Web until now. Thus, six in quick succession. Sorry ‘bout that.
In this entry, Reese and the gang fight Mickey Mouse.
Well, I still think you are being an idiot for staying at home. That car of yours may be something special but how will you ever know if you don’t take it out on the roads? However, Ma says I have to keep in touch so I will write you anyhow.
You will remember Bill Ruby down in Memphis. Blackie and I accidentally wound up owing him a sum of money, not enough to worry about, but I suppose you don’t get that fat without worrying about dimes once in a while. Well, as a result we wound up driving down to Florida to see a man about a dog.
I think I mentioned in my last letter that we have been picking up people as we go. The road doesn’t give you things for no reason. We have a college boy named Ben who is pretty smart in books but I don’t think he has ever been in a fight. We also have a bluesman, who goes by the name Blind Joe Biscuit. He can’t sing for shit but only because the Devil stole his soul. From all appearances he has been looking for it in the bottom of a bottle. Still, it is good to have more company and a car has four seats for a reason. It’s best to keep all four seats full or you’ll find the steering wheel pulling in the wrong direction.
So anyhow, the four of us drove down towards some little Florida town called Ochopee to see this man named Baron. I tried to outdrive the luck sink of the swamps but no good trying when the hoodoo is against you. There was a mermaid in the road and I hit her, which pains me greatly to say but no avoiding it.
Turns out she was just a lady in a titty show (you’d best leave that out when you read this to Ma). I am getting ahead of myself, though. She was being chased by some gentleman in Walt Disney costumes. One was the mouse, one was the duck, and the other was that weird thing which is maybe some kind of dog. We chased them off, though not before I got shot. Leave that bit out for Ma too.
The Walt Disney people also had a head with them in the bag, which was from one of the Shriners they killed at that titty show. It did not look like they were after the mermaid, just like they did not want witnesses. Pretty smart for people who dress up like animals.
Ben has the Internet on his portable computer, and he found out that the head was from a gentleman named Wallace Church who had been the head of the White Castle burger chain. I probably need to remind you that White Castle was the very first roadside burger stop. He also found out about some Seminole Indians who were mixed up with the Fountain of Youth and had done some bad things at another mermaid show some time ago.
Some other things happened which I think are Blind Joe Biscuit’s to tell about or not as he sees fit, but he has a powerful hoodoo as well as being a broken down old bluesman, and it is an honor to travel with him. Anyhow we all knew afterwards that the head was all kinds of important. I am glad that I talk to roads and not the dead. I am also glad that roads do not talk back.
You will also remember Marlin Spells down in Key West. Key West makes me nervous, because there is only one way to get there and that means it’s a bad place to go if you want to avoid your fate. Key West is a place to visit if you don’t want any choices. Still and all, there was some kind of a thing going on and Marlin knows about that sort of thing. Plus he will talk all night if you call him Glinda. Ha ha.
So we let him talk. He said the animal costumes were a mask for people who wanted to hide behind the power of Disney. I suppose that makes sense, although it seems an awful risk. He also said that the head was powerful and more or less got everyone all spooked. More spooked. I have to admit I am not fond of carting heads around without a body attached. Less so after this whole experience.
Unfortunately just around then some lady called and asked for Ben, and she let him think she was the mermaid. He told her some of where we were. Remember what I said about Key West and choices. We had already decided to bury the head at midnight at the place where the roads begin, which is there in Key West. I think that this Church person was the kind of man who pisses nitroglycerin in a hoodoo sense, and we did not want to keep his head around us much longer. Also we thought that the Seminoles would expect us to run, so perhaps we could confuse them.
I should not forget to mention as well that the college boy knows some way to find out what number a call came in from. So he used it and went on the Internet and found out that the call came from a Ponce de Leon Motel. There are any number of streets named after that gentleman in Florida. More of that Fountain of Youth stuff. The picture was pretty clear at this point.
Still, Key West had eaten up all our choices and spit them out in a straight line pointing at a single destination. So we wasted time until midnight. Well, I wasted time. Blackie gambled, which is his hoodoo, and Blind Joe drank, which is his. Maybe the Internet is Ben’s hoodoo. I don’t know. But I wasted my time, because the girls in Key West are not much for honest Southern men.
At midnight we went to bury the head. Everyone threw in a few things to honor Mr. Church, and we laid quarters on his eyes. I am a fool for not seeing what state they were from first. Oh well. Of course the Seminoles showed up right when we were done. The girl Ben talked to on the phone was there. They wanted the head.
Ben was right smart in this pinch. He ran and backed around and gave the girl a punch in the jaw with a tire iron and stole one of their trucks. I was gimped from the stupid bullet in the leg so could not get away, but Blind Joe drank until the Seminole who was chasing me fell over. Good job on his part. We jumped in the truck and my car… I did not mention it, but Blackie’s luck was with him and the tires on the other truck blew out, so only one truck was going anywhere. We took all the cars that would drive and got the Hell out of there. I believe I wound up with another cracked rib but no matter. Beulays are tough.
Blackie swum halfway to the Bahamas, I think. We have not found him yet but I will keep listening to the roads and with his luck I’m sure I’ll pick the right one before long.
Once we find him it will be over to Ochopee for this Baron. They say he wears a diaper and lives in a house on stilts. I am thinking that a diaper is too close to something someone forever young would wear, but maybe I am just thinking too hard. We will see.
Tell Ma I send my love, and don’t forget to leave out the part about being shot. I don’t want her coming down here. It would only cause trouble.