Saga of the Elizabethton Tarheels

by Sequoyah


Chapter Fifty-four


We were totally relaxed and happy, lying in each other’s arms, looking at each other with silly grins on our faces. “You know, Lord of my Heart, we can’t stay here forever,” Justin finally spoke.


“But we don’t have to go yet,” I replied, stretching like a lazy cat. “Maybe tomorrow or, better yet, next week. Anyway, what’s with this Lord of my Heart?”


“Ran across it reading a story set in India. Lord of my Heart was the hero and it's just how I feel about you.”


“Wish I had found it first,” I said in a pouty voice.


“But you didn’t,” Justin laughed, kissed me and started to get up.


“I did find a name for you, but I'm afraid you’ll not like it.”


“And it was?”






“Well, you’re half Lakota, right?”


“So I have been told and definitely have the color to go along with that.”


“Well, did a bit of research and Tehila in Lakota means lover -- well, I think it does and anyway, that’s what it means to me, my Tehila. You're my beautiful Tehila.”


“You do know you are beautiful too, Lord of my Heart.” Of course, Justin soon shortened my pet name to Heart and, even at that, we seldom used our pet names except when we were alone. After a few more kisses, Justin asked, “Think we could get in a bit of sailing before we have to go back?”


“Your wish is my command.”


“I’ll clean up and straighten up,” Justin said and started by stripping linen from the bed. We’d take it home and launder it. While, obviously, Mom and Clarisa knew we were ‘sexually active,’ we made an effort not to rub it in, generally laundering our own linen, underwear and PJs to hide some of the evidence. Clarisa had, on one occasion, commented that we did more laundry of such than some families. When she had, Justin had earned a swat by saying, “Poor love-starved parents.”


I started the motor, weighed anchor and, by the time Justin had finished below, headed for the mouth of our inlet. When Justin came from below, he handed me my shorts and took over the tiller while I pulled them on. As he handled the boat, I applied sunscreen to those parts of my body I could reach -- and not covered by my shorts. I took over sailing as Justin finished the job.


As soon as we passed the mouth of the inlet and entered the ocean, there was an excellent breeze indeed, wind of fifteen to twenty knots from the north-northwest. Justin laughed as he unfurled all our sail and soon we were skimming across the sea, headed south. “You realize we’re going to have to do a lot of tacking to get back,” I laughed at my beautiful Indian lover who was standing at the bow, his long hair loose and blowing in the wind.


As we sailed south, we approached another inlet and just before we reached it, a cigar boat shot out of it at top speed and raced toward the open sea. “What the fuck was that about?” Justin exclaimed as we both grabbed on the boat’s rail as it pitched in the wake of the powerful boat.


“Looks like the boat we saw at a distance a week or so ago,” I responded.


“Yeah, and I have the same question now I had then: what is a boat like that doing in these waters?”


“Maybe we better report it to the coast guard since he definitely wasn’t boating in a responsible and safe manner.”


“Maybe so,” Justin said, “but right now, I have something else in mind. And anyway, I didn't see a registration number.” He sat down beside me and wrapped his arms around my waist and started nuzzling behind my ear, along my neck and under my hair. “God, Marc, I love your scent, on your pillow, on everything you wear, on you,” he said, then giggled. “Yeah, I sure do. This morning while you were in the shower, I was putting our clothes in the laundry hamper and I picked up your T-shirt and stuffed it in my backpack -- for luck. Then when I opened the backpack in AP English, I could smell Marcus Alexander Porcher IV’s scent and got so hard I thought I was going to cum right there.”


“That explains something,” I laughed. “I was digging in my backpack at the same time when I found what I was looking for and glanced over at you. Your face looked like you were having a wonderful wet dream and you had a very obvious erection. Just as you do now.” I swatted at Justin's hard cock which was poking out of his shorts leg, streaming precum. “Are you always horny?” I laughed.


“When you're around or when I smell that wonderful Marcus scent or when I think about you? Yeah, most all the time,” he answered and then kissed me.


While we could have called the Coast Guard from the boat, we weren’t doing a lot of thinking with our heads at the moment. Know what I mean? Justin did call when we got back to the marina. Told me on the way home the officer said he had had other reports, and so far the Coast Guard had not spotted the boat, but they were investigating.


Thursday and Friday when we got to school, the Mud Creek gang was out in full force, but only pointed at us and laughed. We ignored them. Thursday, we left school at 10:00 after a graduation practice which resembled herding cats more than young men and women practicing their announcement that they were ready for the real world. Made me wonder how long it would be before diplomas were just mailed to those who graduated, not a bad idea in my book.


When we got to the car, Justin suggested we call the sheriff’s office and see what was developing in the storage unit case. He also suggested I tell the sheriff about the mysterious boat. “Know we called the Coast Guard, but it came from the swamp, the Grandview side of the swamp.”


“You drive, I’ll call since I also want to check with Mr. Sanford about working tomorrow. Adam told me they were backed up with deliveries and his dad wanted it all done this weekend, even if someone had to work on Sunday.” Before I could get my phone out and dial, it rang. It was Mr. Sanford. “Had my phone out to call you,” I laughed.


“Hope it was to offer to work today and tomorrow. Just got a call from Sheriff Anderson who said he saw no reason you and Justin shouldn’t go back to work and I sure need you both.”


“I'll be there by 2:30 or so,” I responded. “We're on our way home, so I’ll be there as soon as we change”. I turned to Justin and asked if he would go in and he said he would. “Justin will come in as well.” Ordinarily I kept work clothes in the car and changed at the warehouse, but since I hadn’t planned on working, I had to go home to change.


When we had changed and were heading out, I saw Clarisa gathering flowers for the house. “Probably be late for supper,” I said. “Mr. Sanford called and asked us to come in. He’s swamped with deliveries.”


Justin pulled up to the warehouse, kissed me, and I hopped out of the car. Adam greeted me at the door. “Guess the pot crop has been good this year in Mud Creek,” he said as we walked in and started surveying the deliveries. “Looks as if there are a lot of new appliances and stuff going out there.”


“Noticed K.J. and Bull had new, souped-up, tricked-out trucks as well,” I responded.


“Did you notice Skinny and Ox did also?” Adam asked. I nodded. “Well, not as expensive or as tricked-out, but definitely as souped-up, when they didn’t have a pot to piss in a few weeks ago.”


“You think they grew enough weed to pay for all this -- and trucks? Can’t believe it.”


“No, course not, but where did all that money come from so quickly? No, there are a few pot patches around, but just for personal use and maybe some to share. Not enough for the sheriff to worry about. But the trucks and all these things,” he waved his hands at the appliances and furniture headed to Mud Creek, “we’re talking major money.”


“Regardless of where the money came from, this stuff is not going to deliver itself,” I said, and Adam and I started loading the truck. However, our first deliveries would not be to Mud Creek as we had deliveries to Planters’ Landing, the home of the newly rich, mortgaged to the gills -- you know, all those Got Rocks -- and their neighbors. Took forever to get the deliveries made. Even though we were supposed to just put furniture where instructed and leave, we had firm orders to please Planters’ Landing customers since they only considered high-dollar merchandise. One love seat we moved seven times before the lady of the house was satisfied -- and she was the most reasonable one we encountered there.


On our way back to the warehouse, we got a call from Mr. Sanford instructing us to load the washer, dryer, fridge and range for the Ashford family in Mud Creek. “They wanted them delivered today. Told them you likely couldn’t get them all connected, but would do what you could, so do try to at least get them delivered. The person who called was insistent,” he said. It was nearly five when Mr. Sanford called and Adam and I were both kinda surprised that he had asked us to load and deliver the Ashford merchandise since it would take two-three hours minimum, but he was getting so much business in Mud Creek, he didn't want anyone dissatisfied.


The running joke about Mud Creek was that everyone was kin or married to kin. For the most part, they were definitely clannish: you piss off one, you piss off all. To make matters worse, they were one branch of the larger clan of which the Grandview folks were the other half. Anyway, we set to loading the truck and half an hour later, headed for Mud Creek and the Ashfords’. As we left the warehouse, the clouds which had threatened rain all day kept their promise and it seemed as if the bottom fell out, making it hard to see to drive -- more delay.


When we finally reached the Ashfords’, we drove up to a cinder block house built on a concrete slab and were greeted by a passel of grubby kids. Inside we found the house was better than some, no doubt better that many in the area, but not much. I was surprised that they had been able to purchase nearly a thousand dollars worth of appliances, but they had.


We started unloading the appliances and setting them in place. Of course, the wiring for the range and dryer was wrong and the plumbing for the washer was inadequate, but workable. Mr. Ashford insisted we at least plug everything in, but we refused to plug in the range and dryer. We finally convinced him to do so would likely result in a fire or someone electrocuted trying to cook. It was well after 8:00 when we were finally able to crawl back in the truck and head home.


The rain had slowed to drizzle, but was now accompanied by fog, making seeing and driving difficult.


Mud Creek Road parallels Mud Creek, running along the south side of that waterway. Actually, it is hard to determine what is Mud Creek and what is swamp since they run together. The only difference is that Mud Creek does have a creek bed and is quite deep compared to the swamp which joins it on the north side. We were both bushed when we had finished with the Ashfords and Adam was driving along the creek on our way home. I was half asleep, my head leaning back against the seat, when Adam exclaimed, “What the fuck? What’s that bastard up to?”


“That bastard” was driving a truck jacked up as high as he could get it, covered with lights and all of them on, blinding Adam as they were reflected into his face by our truck’s mirrors. “That son of a bitch is headed toward us and he’s not driving slow.” The driver did slow down finally but, nevertheless, gave our bumper a nudge. The jacked-up truck was left behind as Adam floor-boarded the furniture van, but only temporarily. Suddenly he was headed toward us again, this time giving us quite a bump before dropping back.


“What’s his point?” I asked. “The asshole is trying to wreck us. I’m calling the sheriff.” I had put Sheriff Anderson’s number on speed dial after our earlier problems. As soon as the dispatcher picked up, I said, in somewhat of a panic, “This is Marc Porcher. I’m on Mud Creek Road headed toward town. Adam Sanford and I have just made a delivery to the Ashfords’ place and this jacked-up truck is running up behind us and bumping us... Well, it’s hard to say. He has at least a dozen lights and all of them are on and shining in our mirrors... Adam, the dispatcher says slow down and pull off to the side of the road. There’s a patrol car just down the road... OK, we’re headed for the side of the road... Yeah, he’s barreling toward us... Right, I can hear the siren now...” I guess the driver of the truck heard as well since he came flying by, gave us a blast of his horn and headed down a side road which could hardly be called a trail, his horn now blaring “Dixie”. As he did, I tried to get his license plate number, but it was covered with mud.


When the patrol car arrived, the deputy was clearly disgusted with the now-gone driver of the truck and frustrated because we had been unable to get the plate number. I was able to tell him the truck looked blue, but it had been foggy and drizzling, so I couldn’t be sure.


I was finally home and ready for a shower at 9:00, but was so near exhaustion, I decided against it. Justin thought otherwise. I guess sometimes he didn't like my scent! Anyway, he undressed me and hauled my all-but-limp body into the shower. He practically had to hold me up, but I managed to stand on my own feet long enough for him to wash and dry me. That accomplished, he threw me over his shoulders and carried me to the bed and tucked me in. I was asleep seconds after our goodnight kiss. Once asleep, I was tormented by dreams of being forced off the road and into Mud Creek. Several times during the night, Justin shook me awake and told me I was crying out in my sleep.


I was well aware of how little rest I got when I crawled to the shower, hoping it would wake me, but it did little and I went down to breakfast unrefreshed. Two extra cups of coffee helped and I was awake enough be dragged to school. Adam and Bobbie arrived about the same time as Justin and I. “Your lover looks as bad as mine,” Justin said as he kissed Bobbie on the cheek.


“If I look like shit, I look much better than I feel,” Adam said.


“Nightmares?” I asked.


“All night long,” he replied.


“Figure out what that was all about?” I asked, hoping he had some idea why we were almost run into Mud Creek and the swamp.


“I haven't the faintest,” he replied. “Too tired.”


“Same here,” I agreed.


“You know you two have pissed off K.J. and his crew,” Bobbie said. “I mean you did nothing to them, but they were really upset about the prom, I guess, and because of that they got kicked out of school for a while. You weren't responsible for their behavior, of course, but you know you are blamed. I heard that Ox didn't make up anything he missed while he was suspended, so he won't be graduating until he takes summer school or comes back next year. K.J. may be in the same situation. I can just hear either or both saying, ‘Them faggots are keeping me from graduating.’ And you do know how that Mud Creek bunch stick together.”


“You may have something there,” Justin said. “What do you think?”


“Maybe,” Adam said.


I thought about what we knew about the thefts and the planting of drugs in the storage unit. It didn't make me feel any easier about the situation, but I said nothing.


Feeling as I did, I wasn't very patient with the two teachers directing the graduation rehearsal. They were like two middle schoolers, each wanting things done their way. Of course, we seniors just wanted to be through the mess and get out of there. Finally, at 10:30, someone said, “I'm out of here!” and before the teachers knew what was going on, the exodus started and they were left wondering where everyone had gone.


When we got to the parking lot, Adam called his dad and told him he and I would be there mid-afternoon. I guess he knew we were worthless until we got some rest. Justin took me home and headed for the store. I crawled to our place and climbed in bed as soon as I could get undressed. I don't even remember getting in bed nor was I aware of Justin coming up and checking on me when he came home for lunch at 1:00.


Clarisa came up at 2:00 and asked if I was ready for lunch. I had felt better, but I was a hundred percent improved over what I had been when I came home.


While I was eating, the phone rang and Clarisa answered it and promptly handed it to me. “Marc here,” I said.


“Marc, Sheriff Anderson. Just talked to Justin and he said you were home. Told me you had a rough night. Feeling better?”


“Definitely. A couple or three hours sleep does wonders.”


“Justin said you would be going to work shortly. I asked him to come by and would like for you to come as well. Have a couple things to talk over.”


“Sure. I'll be leaving in a half hour or so. Justin's waiting for my call to pick me up and take me to work.”


“See you in a few, then,” he said and we hung up. I wondered what was going on now, but put that aside and called Justin. He was free at the moment and was walking in the kitchen ten minutes later, as I was finishing a late lunch.


“How you doin', babe?” he asked as he briefly touched my lips with his.


“To be honest, I have been better, but the rest helped muchly.”


“As soon as Adam got home from school Mr. Sanford ordered him to bed as well. He did say he hoped you two would be up to working when you got up, but he'd not push.”


“So long as we don't have another adventure like last night, I can do it. Well, I hope we aren't delivering a pile of concrete elephants to Planters’ Landing.”


“Given the way you have bulked up from hard work, I think you two might even be able to wrestle a concrete elephant on and off the truck,” Justin said, laughing, “but I understand you don't just deliver merchandise to Planters’ Landing. You place an item there -- there and here and over there and over here and everywhere!”


A concrete elephant had been a running part of our family myth since Justin and I were five or six. Granddad Carter brought a rather large and -- for us -- very heavy Christmas present with mother's name on it and placed it under the tree. For some reason, both Justin and I became fixated by it and bugged Granddad half out of his mind, asking what it was. He finally said, “It's a concrete elephant.” We were very pleased with ourselves for getting Granddad to tell us what was in the package. Since we knew what was in the package, we paid no attention when Mother -- Mom -- opened it. When all the presents had been opened, we began to bug Mother asking what she had done with her concrete elephant. She hadn't the foggiest idea what we were talking about and became exasperated when we kept asking her about it. We became more and more upset since she seemed to be telling a fib because Granddad Carter has told us he was giving her a concrete elephant. I guess we finally just gave up because Mother never told us what she had done with her concrete elephant and she never knew what we were talking about. Years later, long after Granddad Carter was gone, Mom, Justin and I finally figured out the whole puzzle and the concrete elephant became a part of our family myth.


Soon lunch finished, and Justin and I hugged Mom and Clarisa and headed for the sheriff's office. As we walked out the back door, I said, “I need to remember to tell the sheriff about all the recent wealth in Mud Creek purchasing a whole lot of stuff.”





*pronounced ‘day-ghee-lah’