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Dharma Gulch: Chap. 19 "The Ferryman"

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The Hunter rode slowly up a hillside and came across a wide river. The Black Rock mountains were just beyond. He had to cross but the flowing current was moving too rapidly to do so safely. He noticed something further up river, on his side of the bank. It appeared to be a boat dock. There was a small cabin nearby. He rode cautiously toward the structures. As he approached, he heard the sounds of children playing. He dismounted, tying his horse to a shrub, then approached the cabin by foot. He drew the revolver. Suddenly, a voice! From behind! "Now, friend," the voice said, "let me ask you. Are you a good guy or a bad guy?" The Hunter slowly turned around to see a man with a long gray beard and hair, holding a shotgun aimed directly at the Hunter's chest! "A good guy!" the Hunter replied. "Now, in my experience," the gray man said, "when someone tells me they're a good guy well, you had better bet they're the bad guy! Now, lower your gun!" The Hunter complied. Gray man held his shotgun steady, "Now, what do you want?" The Hunter noticed a barge tied to the dock. "Are you a Ferryman?" the Hunter asked. Gray man nodded. "Well," the Hunter began, "I was looking to give you some ferrying business!" "Where you want to go?" Gray man asked. "I'm heading to the Black Rock mountains," the Hunter replied. Gray man laughed, "Black Rock?! Why you heading that way?" "I'm trying to locate someone," the Hunter answered. Just then a boy and girl came running around the side of the cabin and quickly stopped. The cabin door opened and an attractive brunette peered out. "Everything okay, Frank?!" she asked. The Gray man glanced back, "Yeah. It's okay, Cindy! Get Zach and Emma ready for dinner!" The woman nodded then motioned to the two kids, who quickly went inside. Frank turned back to the Hunter, "You don't have to cross the river to get to the Black Rocks. This river snakes its way right to it! I'll take you there, friend, but I hope you realize where you're going is a little spooky!" The Hunter nodded. "Why you settle out here?" the Hunter asked. Frank smiled, "I took this ferrying gig because the pay is good and, as a river boat pilot, I'm helping transfer souls who wander in. I try to make their last journey as pleasent as can be. Considering where they're going to end up, that's the least I can do!" The Hunter understood about helping souls. He just hoped he could save two of them in time! Next: Chap. 20 "The Barge"

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