(So, this week marks the real release of Spree. By the time you read this, it should be available to order on my Pen-L landing page, and will soon be on Amazon as well. I’ll let you know when it’s there, as well as giving a shout out when the Kindle edition comes out. In the meantime, to whet your appetite, here’s a more calm moment in Steve and Eddie’s journey across the nation. Calm being a relative term. They’re almost out of California and they’re at a greasy spoon, loading up and…well, you’ll see.)
“We need to get real guns,” Eddie said in a low voice.
Steve had a burger halfway to his mouth. It was one of those you can’t find anymore, the kind where the bun shone with grease ’cause they browned the thing right on the grill. The beef was meat, not soyfill tofu or whatever, and the veggies tasted like they came from a farm, not a factory. Freakin’ awesome, man.
“Real guns?” He put the burger on his plate. “Dude, that means if they catch us, it’s armed robbery. That’s serious shit.”
Eddie shrugged and swallowed a bite of food. “They will anyway. Even with the fake guns. The people we robbed thought they were real, and that’s all that matters.”
It was pretty easy to get a fake gun in LA that looked genuine. For every JJ Abrams, there were a hundred amateurs who needed props for their YouTube videos. And stores that catered to them.
Steve stared at Eddie for a few moments, then picked up his sandwich. “The fake ones work. Why get real ones?”
“Because we’re headed into places like Arizona and Texas. They still got Wyatt Earp types there, man. Walk into some mom-and-pop store, and the guy behind the counter might just pull out a shotgun and blow our asses away. Unless we got a gun on him already.”
For a few moments, the food in Steve’s mouth lost its taste. He stopped chewing and stared at Eddie.
“Hey, don’t sweat it,” Eddie said. “If we got a gun pulled, they won’t try it, long as we pay attention. But if they do, we want something besides a fuckin’ rubber movie prop.”
Steve chewed the rest of his food and gave it some thought. He was getting a sneaking suspicion Eddie knew a hell of a lot more about this than he was letting on. The way he said it sounded so…experienced. Yeah, that was the word. Like maybe he’d done it before.
Come to think of it, Eddie never really said why he moved from Jersey to LA. But was it safe to ask? Naw. Let it ride, at least for now.
“How we gonna get guns?” Steve took a drink of soda. “I didn’t even know how to buy one in LA. And we can’t get one at a gun store. We’re felons, dude.”
“Don’t sweat it. I’ll make a phone call before we leave, see what I can drum up.”
“Should I ask who you’re calling?”
He’d never seen Eddie smile that way before. Chills ran down his spine.
“It’s probably better if you don’t.”
The rest of the meal went by quietly.