In the previous episode, Max Goodnight is in church searching for a friend when he’s drawn to a window at the side of the building. Looking out, readers voted that he sees the yellow Ford truck the sheriff had been searching for.
Max heard singing — service had begun. He wasn’t much into singing hymns. Some of the arrangements were nice, even classic. But the words were SO sappy and full of verbal self-flagellation that it made Max want to puke. He didn’t feel guilty about skipping the hymns as he headed to the window.
The wind was blowing like it always does and a branch was lightly knocking against the window. The light, steady, knock-knock-knocking was so rhythmic it was almost mystical. Even though he was alone Max felt he should tip-toe over. When he got to the window, he peaked out surreptitiously, like he was a spy. There was a spooky energy in the air.
But the spookiness gave way to shock when he looked across the field, and into the lot next door. It was the 1975 yellow Ford pick-up the Sheriff had been asking about last night. Or was it? Max didn’t know anything about cars or trucks. But it was definitely an old yellow pick-up. Max’s shock turned to fear when it occurred to him, What if this guy’s a killer? What if he’s here? What if he’s watching me right now?
Should he rush inside? Stop the service? Tell everyone to run for their lives? Wait. That’s stupid. What if it’s not the right pick-up? This was West Texas for pity’s sake, everybody drove a pick-up. Even old ones. Sure, being yellow was kind of odd, but some people are more flashy than others. There was no way to know if this was THE pick-up. Nothing to get alarmed about. It was simply something to report, then drop. And that’s exactly what Max WOULD HAVE done if only he’d remembered to bring his cell. Max forgets to take his cell all the time. There are literally ZERO bars at the ranch so he never uses it. No wonder he always forgot it.
Max decided to go to the church office and call the Sheriff. As he walked down the hall, he heard voices. In one of the classrooms, he saw Miss Elaine talking to a young woman. She had her back to the door so Max didn’t see her face, but he could tell she was sexy. It may be sexist to say, but a 14 year-old boy doesn’t need to see a woman’s face to know she’s sexy. There is plenty of information he can get ogling her backside. Whoever this woman was, she was someone Max could have stared at all day. He probably would have too, but there was something else that struck Max as odd. The young woman was standing VERY near Miss Elaine. Very near. Max knew that women can be more affectionate than men, especially the men from here. Even so, it looked odd. Then Max wondered, What if this is Bessie Mae’s daughter? What if Miss Elaine is talking to her about me right now?
That would be sweet; a hot nanny to drive him around, fix him food, and hang out with him. Why hadn’t they thought of this before? He got so amped up he nearly forgot to call the Sheriff. He backed away, made his way to the church office, looked up the number, and dialed.
* * *
As Max exited the office he could hear Mr. Coltsen over the P.A. preaching. He knew that droning voice well, and he was in no hurry to join the “flock.” Max stood in the back, looking through the glass panes on the door. He saw a few people he knew including Miss Elaine — the young woman was gone. The knocking from the branch continued. The mystical energy was back, only this time it compelled Max to walk out back toward the parking lot. In the distance, Max saw the young woman walking around, among the cars. She was kind of frantically walking and pressing her beeper, like she was looking for her car. Max approached.
“Can I help you?”
Only then did the full force of this young woman’s beauty punch Max in the face. She was brown skinned, Native American, with deep brown eyes and an nontraditional turned up, button nose. Her skin looked absolutely creamy. When she smiled, her white teeth nearly glowed.
“I can’t find my car.” She said.
“What kind of car is it?”
“Oh. Well.. um…”
“It doesn’t matter,” Max said. “I don’t know much about cars anyway. I saw you talking to Miss Elaine. I think it was about me. I’m Max Goodnight. We’re the one’s looking for the nanny.”
Just then the Sheriff drove past, making his way toward the pick-up. The young woman kept an eye on the Sheriff as he sailed by, but Max was way more interested in this young woman.
“If you’re not going to church we could go back to the ranch right now, I guess.” Max said. “We live on a pretty big spread about 15 miles out. Middle of nowhere.”
“Really?” She replied. Just then she pressed the key, and the car beeped. “There it is. Come on.”
As Max made his way to the car, he saw something odd. Vote below on what will happen next or if reading in email click Take our Poll.
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