Chapter 1 Preview

CHAPTER 1 (first couple pages)
Jonathan did not start out his life to become a rambler, it just worked out that way. Nor did he ever think of himself as a father figure, yet here he was traveling the country with a young boy most considered to be his son.

Both Johnny and William had been through a lot and both were trying to leave a troubled past behind them.

For a couple years, Johnny worked as a diesel mechanic at a truck stop near Wheeling, West Virginia. After that, he did seasonal work at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio. Once the summer was over, Johnny thought he might get on at an automotive plant in Michigan, but then the automotive industry tanked and he found himself on the road again. Now, he and the boy were taking their next step in life as they crossed the border into Canada.

No matter where they traveled, Johnny would always seek a paper from West Virginia where he grew up. The Clarksburg Exponent Telegram was getting harder and harder to come by in print, especially the further away he traveled. Of course, he could get online and look up the paper, but even the Internet didn’t deliver the news quite like the printed version.

Johnny wasn’t exactly from Clarksburg, but rather just a few miles west on Route 50. He was curious about his home town and knew that if he ever heard anything from there, the Exponent Telegram would be his best bet to find out about it.

Gazing at the papers in the Canadian newsstand in Colfax, Ontario, he realized that he would probably need to get a subscription if he were to keep reading the paper.

William looked up with hollow eyes at Johnny. He was not a talker, but hidden within was an intelligent and thoughtful child. “Sometimes, no news is good news, Jonathan,” the boy said.

“I guess you’re right,” Johnny said with a sigh. The two returned to their car and pulled away into the Ontario afternoon.

Johnny was able to get a job detailing cars at a local Buick dealership that took their share of both new and used cars on the lot. The job wasn’t glamorous, in fact, he never even received tips, but it kept food on the table and a roof over their heads.

Their home at the present consisted of a rented trailer over near the industrial section of town. He got it on a month-to-month lease, which was fine for Johnny, because he never knew when he and the boy would have to be packing up and moving again.

It was late September when William came through the door as he always did this time of day when he walked down the street to check the mail. “Your paper is here,” he said as he placed a two-week old copy of the Exponent Telegram in Johnny’s lap.

“Thank you, William.”

“You’re welcome, Jonathan,” William replied.

The two had been in the trailer for almost three months and the old Clarksburg news was pretty much the same as any other day.

He was about to head out to the garbage with it when an article on Page A4 caught his eye. Finally, something about his home town, he thought.

As he read through the article, he left the paper folded and set it down next to William’s iPod. The article bothered him a lot. Maybe William would read it, maybe he would not.

Later that night, William came to Jonathan, and said, “I don’t think the matter is behind us.”

“No, I don’t think it is,” was all Johnny could say.

“I’m worried,” William said flatly.

“Me too,” replied Johnny.

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To read more, pick up DARKENED HILLS on Paperback or Kindle at amazon.com.

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