John Brown’s Body

Blackbeard stood up, threw his half of the bill on the table. “Mae, we can always count on you for good advice.”

Terry stood up. “Where we going?”

“Let’s go talk to the swamp creatures. Maybe they know our mystery man.”


It was hard to call it a marina anymore, but then again it was hard to call the fishing boats there fishing boats anymore, their decks littered with more beer cans than nets. But the old men who lived there in the backwater marina had watched their view turn from sea oats and sand dunes to a line of tall buildings and pancake houses. Thirty years ago, this marina had been the only thing that stood out here in the backwater. Now, it was lost in pastel developments.

Blackbeard stood on the dock, called out to the boat, asked permission to come aboard, and heard someone yell something from inside the pilot house.

A tall grey man, stooped from years of living in a cabin way too small for a man his size, stepped out onto the deck. “Little John?” he said to Blackbeard.

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