The Last Hurrah of General Jackson

He pushed her away. “Watch the hands. This coat is real leather.”

Carlotta kicked him in the shin. “Do something, big mouth, before we land in a jail cell.” Arturo pointed to plants rotting in clumps of dirt. “Let’s leave it under there.”

After they’d left, the General crawled out of the box and dusted off the Army jacket he’d preserved since the Vietnam War. He dug up the loot and hid it among his meager belongings.

His stomach began to growl. First, he’d freshen up at the hydrant down the block. Bathing was a luxury few in his position could afford, but the General always found a way to wash his face and hands.  Securing his hygiene kit, he rounded the corner to Manny’s Bodega on the other side of the schoolyard. Preoccupied with tallying a customer’s bill, the owner stood with his back to the veteran. General Jackson stepped up to the counter and bowed. “Top of the morning to you.”

Manny saluted, went to the back, and brought out two muffins. “On the house.”

The General bowed again and took off.

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