In the middle of it all, he sat there, close to the fire. Wanting the warmth of the flames but seeking the darkness outside of the warmth. As always a contradictory nature wrapped inside and out of this small, thin, man.
He wanted to run, to hide, to disappear into a billboard and be forever lost. He also wanted to rifle through the bodies finding whatever valuables were quick and easy snatches. He did neither. The thin man sat by the fire and weighed his real options; stay and wait for the beach patrol, or leave now before it got light. He could already see the cliff fifty yards behind him. The inevitable sunrise was approaching.
On the beach between the ocean and the sea grass bodies lay contorted, bloody, silent, and clothed only in beach wear, ready for a party. The wind blew in gusts, whipping the man’s long white hair in front of his face, and twirling it around his neck. He turned and looked out at the ocean. Small waves crashed and began their slow creep up the beach. The tide was coming in.
Soon the sun would rise over the cliffs behind this shocked, and stoic survivor. With daylight approaching he knew two inevitable forces were about to collide. The local beach patrol would discover the mayhem of the night before, and the thin man, if he remained here, would be suspect number one.
The thin man pulled a blue bandana out of his back pocket, ran his hands through his hair, and wrapped the bandana around his head, hippie style. He looked around for his backpack, shoes, and light windbreaker. His pack was still on the picnic table, his shoes were missing, and the light jacket was loosely stuffed inside a net pocket of the pack.
He grabbed the pack and headed up the winding path that led to the top of the cliff where he had parked his motorcycle. If he was quick enough he knew he could escape before anyone even knew he was at this scene of depravity and chaos.
Out of breath and breathing hard when he reached his Honda 750 his shoes were still on the seat, as he had left them. A small detail he forgot until he saw them. Catching his breath he heard the particular whine of a four wheeler pushing through the sand about find the carnage on the beach below.
Crouching down he slipped his shoes on, threw his pack over his left shoulder, gripped the handlebars, and pushed. Nothing happened. The bike would not move. He pushed again. Nothing.
Looking at the back wheel he saw a car boot attached to it. Trouble, he groaned. But then he remembered a trick a fellow rider had mentioned in passing a few days ago. Digging in his pack he found his small bright flashlight, flicked it on and looked for the air valve on the fatboy tire.
The car boot was not made for motorcycles, it was too big. His fatboy tire was almost as wide as a car tire but the boot was loose on it. He used his leatherman and began letting air out of the tire. The wind and swishing grass muffled the squeal of air as the tire deflated.
He let just enough air out of the tire to wiggle the car boot loose, packed his gear and struggled pushing the bike through the heavy sand and onto the two lane road. Pushing the Honda for all his slight body was worth the thin man hopped the seat and began using his legs to push his load at least a mile away from the scene.
He looked East and could see details in the hills and trees. An out of sight shelter was his main concern at the moment. Anything to hide him, a shed, a close clump of trees, even a large billboard with tall grass growing at its base would do at this point.
To be continued...
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