"Try it now." Luke Cordell hollered at the man standing in the doorway of the garage.
"Sure," the young man jumped in his vintage 56 Chevy and turn the key in the ignition. It started smooth as a baby's bottom and the kid jumped out with a huge smile. "Alright, that sounds nice."
"Carburetor, that's all." Luke told him with a smile, as he wiped his greasy hands on a hand towel.
"I sure do thank you. And you can bet your boots I'll be back next time I have a problem." Ken shook hands with him and went inside to take care of the bill.
Luke loved working on old cars and Ken had been a new customer. Sid was glad for the new business. In a town this small new business was a novelty.
But looking at the old car brought memories of a time he preferred to forget. He'd been at Benny's garage for three years and he finally felt as though he belonged somewhere again. No use dredging up old memories. He had a good life now. The past was the past, and he wasn't even he same man now.
He shrugged the melancholy feeling and saw a new Buick drive up.
He went to see who it was.
A pretty red-head rolled down her window.
"Can I help you?"
"I hope so. My other window is stuck and I have no idea how to fix it," She said, with a quick glance in his direction.
Luke took a second glance at her while she looked him over under the guise of big sunglasses.
"I'll take a look. Might take a minute, you can go have a seat in the office if you like." Luke directed her.
"Sure," She got her purse and got out of the car. She was wearing shorts, and a t-shirt, with tennis shoes. It wasn't the clothes he was looking at, it was the figure that filled it all out. He blew a silent whistle.
Her hair bounces all over her shoulders and back in red curls. But as she turned the knob, she turned to look over her shoulder at him, and smiled at him.
The man in the office was going over some books and she had to clear her throat to get his attention.
"Oh, sorry ma'am. Can I help you?"
"Your mechanic is looking at my car. My window is stuck on the passenger side and I can't fix it." She told him.
He smiled indulgently. "Just have a seat, he'll bring me the paperwork in a few and we'll let you know…"
"The sign outside says Benny's garage, your name is Sid, the mechanic's name tag says Luke, where's Benny," she smiled at him.
"He's dead, he was my brother." Sid answered.
"Oh, I'm sorry. I was just being smart…" she offered a quick apology.
"How'd he die?"
"Heart attack. He was the head mechanic, working under one of those big SUV's and it was nearly a hundred degrees outside. Had a massive heart attack. He was dead before I could pull him out from under the car."
"How awful for you." The young woman said.
"It happened about five years ago." Sid told her, glancing at her quickly"You're new in town. Staying long?"
"Hope so, got a job, I'm a beautician." She told him.
"You don't say. Well welcome. We don't get many people moving in, just moving out." He chuckled. "My name is Sid Miller."
"Pleased to meet you, I'm Jackie Summers." She smiled.
"My wife will be glad to know about you." He chuckled.
"What's her name?"
"Sherry. I'm sure she'll be in to get a new hair-do."
"I'll look forward to meeting her then."
"Where you from?"
"Well hon, you won't get as many customers out here as you would in Dallas."
"That's why I moved. I wanted some peace and quiet."
"Well, you moved to the right place. Luke, my mechanic, he moved here about three years ago, for the same reason."
She nodded and sat down in the seat against the wall. She watched the man as an attractive lady came up to him, kissed him on the cheek and they talked for a few minutes.
Half an hour or so later, Luke came in with the paperwork.
The man motioned for her to come to the counter.
"Electrical problem. Shouldn't take over forty-five minutes to an hour to take care of. Want to wait?"
"Sure." She glanced at Lee, looking him over as he had her. Her eyes trailed up long legs covered in hip hugging jeans, and a t-shirt that had the arms ripped out of them, showing off his massive arms and muscles, but she was sure it wasn't to expose those massive muscles but to stay cool in the Texas heat.
Then her eyes went upward, taking in his facial features. He had massively thick brown hair that rode high, combed to perfection, and penetrating golden brown eyes that seemed to look right through her.
Obviously caught staring, she went back to her seat.
Luke returned to the car and in less than an hour he was finished. He came back in wiping his hands again. "All done, ma'am."
"That was fast."
"Routine kind of fix, happens a lot." He smiled.
She paid her bill and left. But before she did, she gave him another backward glance and smile.
He liked red-heads. He had a feeling he'd be seeing her again.
Sid strolled into the garage, and grinned, "Did you get her number?"
"You know, the red-head."
Luke chuckled, "No, I didn't. Don't like to come on too strong these days Sid, could lose a customer."
"Good thinking. But for the record, her name is Jackie Summers. And I have her phone number, and know where she works."
Luke grinned, "Does Sherry know."
"Funny," Sid grinned. "Say you want to come over for dinner tonight? Sherry's cooking up some chicken fried steaks."
"Sounds good, what time?" Luke hollered as he checked an engine on a car that had been left overnight. "Oh about six, we'll have a few beers, watch a couple of movies."
"Sounds good, but isn't Sherry getting a bit tired of me popping in all the time?" Luke grinned.
"I'll let you know when she's tired of it. See ya at six, are you about through?" Sid glanced outside at the parking lot, seeing no cars but the one he was working on left for the week.
"Yeah, I want to finish this one up, so Ed can pick it up in the morning, then I'm done." Luke told him, as he made an adjustment and the engine began to purr.
"Good, you can go on home when you get done with that one." Sid told him.
"Thanks, give me time to clean up a bit before I come over." He told him not looking up.
"Alright, see you later." Sid told him and went back inside.
They were about to close for the day as soon as Sid finished up the paperwork and counted the cash box.
Luke worked another thirty minutes on the engine, satisfied that the customer would love the new sound and closed the hood.
He washed up and tapped on the window of the office, letting Sid know he was going home.
Sid nodded and Luke left.
He was driving an old pickup he'd refurbished and it tickled him that the engine ran like a clock.
He pulled out on the main highway to go home and was half way home before he noticed a black car in his rearview mirror. It announced itself as it had followed him from Sid's garage. Funny, he didn't recognize the car, and he couldn't see who was driving it. The windows were tinted very dark.
He was sure it had followed him from the garage. He eyed the car, suspiciously. He sped up. So, did the black car. In fact, it came very close to the backend of his truck.
"What in the hell is wrong with them?" he muttered thickly as he eyed the car in the mirror.
He slowed down, the car almost plowed into him.
He sped up and the car hung back a little.
Someone was deliberately messing with him, he quickly decided. He took an old dirt road, and the car followed, moving up fast behind him, just then he jackknifed the truck and turned around going the opposite direction and trying to get a look at who was driving but it was too dark through the tinted glass. He couldn't see a thing inside.
The car whipped about too. When Luke took off down a field, the car stopped and didn't follow. Old man Tucker would be aggravated to see his field tore up, so he got back on the road and drove up to the farmhouse.
"Who the hell was that?" Luke got out of his truck to see the car speeding away.
The car was new, but he didn't recognize it. Living in a small town he should have. Probably some teenager driving his folk's car, out to piss him off. Well, he'd managed that quite easily.
Old man Tucker was sitting on his porch and he barely looked up at Luke as he approached him.
"Want to tell me what that was all about?" Tucker asked.
"I'm not sure. A car was following me, trying to run me over, it looked like. Couldn't lose him until I took off down the pasture, sorry, I'll pay for any damages."
"That's okay son, I just use that pasture for my cows. You say someone tried to run you over?"
"Sure, looked like it."
"Sounds like someone is ticked at you. Who'd you make mad, Luke?" The old man chuckled.
"I don't know. No one that I can think of." Luke answered, wondering the answer to that himself.
"Well," Tucker looked up at him now, "Lot of smart-alecks on the road these days. I was driving my tractor down the road the other day and someone nearly run me off the road too."
"Yeah, everybody around here knows I drive that tractor every Monday morning." Tucker looked at him.
"That's strange, maybe there's someone new in town who likes to tear the roads up." Luke suggested.
"Well, if I'd have had my shotgun, I'd have scared him."
Luke laughed. "I guess you would've."
"Want a glass of tea?"
"No, I gotta get washed up, thanks just same Mr. Tucker. I just wanted to let you know I didn't do that a purpose."
"Thanks for stopping by, son." Tucker waved him along.
Luke got back in the truck and drove home slowly, mulling over the driver of that car in his head. He hoped it wasn't someone new in town, he'd hate to have to deal with the guy, or gal.