I grabbed one of their arms and shouldered them at the waist then carried them over to the passenger side of my truck, still swearing up and down that this would be the death of me…
My new acquaintance seemed to have embraced hibernation – that or they were dead; either way, the remaining drive across the dunes was silent and uneventful besides the roaring of my engine and the wind whistling through the ventilation ports. I drummed my fingers on the barrel of my sidearm and hummed the bass of a slow tune to fill the void and occupy my mind until the long drive eventually brought me to my destination and I slowed my truck to a stop in front of the patchwork composite walls of a canopied town built into a deep valley between two concave rock formations. At the top of the wall, just above the gate, a figure emerged with a large railrifle in hand and peered down the scope at me. Moments later, the radio in my truck pinged and I flipped a switch to accept the traffick.
“That hull’s lookin’ real nice, Aarden, but who’s that sleepin’?”
“Ain’t had the chance to ask yet.”
A chuckle came back, “don’t matter whatcha find out there, yer gon’ take it and see what it’s worth, huh?”
“S’what I do. Now’re’ya gunna open the gates there or’re’ya payin’ me to chat?”
A grumble, “yeah, alright. Gimme a second. If whoever that is end up causin’ any trouble though, and the marshal come ’round askin’ me, just lettin’ ya know, I’m pointin’er right at you.”
“Yer a saint and a scholar there, Ven. A real friend.” Another grumble from the other end and then I began to hear the churning of gears as the shambled gate began to withdraw. I eased forward and through the maze of streets until I came to my shop sitting proudly on the corner where two main streets met. I pulled into the alley and around the back where I remotely ping the garage to open then parked my truck inside the bay. Home sweet current home.
My truck’s roaring engine descended to a low hiss and then a sudden stop as it powered off. I glanced over at my passenger – still no signs of movement but the faint sound of breath against the true silence. I raised my gloved hand and snapped my fingers just above their head three times. Nothing. I shrugged my shoulders, content to wait for answers, and exited the truck. The automated garage door began to shut and I walked around to the bed of the truck to sort through my salvage and inventory what was gained. Most of it was body scrap, junk useful for repair, but some of it looked promising – one piece turned out to be a core-plug just shy of disrepair.
“Put the junk down and turn around real careful like.” A voice hissed from behind me; a young voice — the person I had picked up?
Daily Prompt: Passenger
Word of the Day: exurb