“Can I help you?” he asked.
“Old Man Cooter! So good to see you…” Mavis said trailing off as if he knew what she were talking about.
“Okay. Uh, what can I do for you?”
“How’s the weather?”
“I’d say rather cold.”
Having finished everything she could think to say, she just stared at him.
“You three okay?” he asked. “Those two boys look like a coyote rung the life out of ‘em. You need a hot meal or something?”
Stank and I both perked up at the mention of food. Old Man Cooter chuckled when he saw our puppy dog eyes. “I’d say that’s a ‘Yes.’”
“We’re fine,” Mavis said.
If I weren’t all gentleman-like and she weren’t stronger and smarter than me, I would have punched her out right there.
“We were just heading up to a farmhouse we heard was thissa way,” she said.
“Well, there’s no one out here, but me,” Old Man Cooter said.
“What?” Mavis asked.
“My house is the only one down this road.”
“Oh,” she said, then looked thoughtful. “Would you take us there, please?”
Mavis pulled out the laser gun and shook it at Old Man Cooter. “Cuz I asked nicely.”
“Am I supposed to be scared?”
Mavis nodded and put both hands on the gun. “Sure as a Pollywog eats fish.”
“That’s pretty sure,” Old Man Cooter said with a laugh.
“No, it’s sure as a Pollywog marries a fish,” I said demonstrating my sophis-ti-cation.
“They don’t do that neither,” Stank said being helpful like.
“Shut it!” Mavis yelled, then to Old Man Cooter, “Put them hands up or I’ll knock that head off your shoulders.”
Old Man Cooter sighed. “You know what that is, right?” he pointed to the gun in Mavis’s hands.
“Yeah, it’s our ticket outta this place,” she said and Stank and I backed her up with “Yeah”s of our own.