Chapter 9 So Gomez Thinks I'm a Slut

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Dahl —Saturday, 12:31 AM

Something about Gomez driving towards me on the bumpy grass cracks me up—I wanna ask him if he's lost, or if we both are. He doesn't stop right away, like he's gonna four-eighty me. Classic Gomez slapstick. I climb in beside him.

"Oh god, Gomez, are you hot-boxing this rental?"

His sunglasses hide his eyes but his grin narcs him out.

"Take me over to the excavation, please, I wanna check that Ti Guy isn't digging to China."

"When'd I become your Uber, Dollll?"

His one-handed steering seems chill, even for him, on this bumpy earth. The soil's so desiccated, feels like sinking into brown sugar.

"Are you one-hand rolling another doob?"

He idles the truck ahead at a snail's pace and that same grin answers me.

"This one's for both of us."

"Is it that legal government pot? 'Cuz I don't feel like OD'ing on that purple killing everyone by Lees Ave."

"Relax Dahl, I got you brother."

I'd be calmer if he didn't transition into steering with a knee on the wheel while baptising the joint. I crack the window. Thunder's rolling in, far enough away that you could confuse it for traffic or your clothes dryer being possessed by sky-net.

"Oh shit, now it's gonna rain..."

"Dahl, man, you got no chill, relax bro."

He's right.

"Tell me about the landowner. She cool?"

"Oh-ho man!" I face him, to drive up the drama... "She's got a pug named Nacho, brother—true story."

"Word? Wifey material!" he sparks the joint, takes a drag and passes it, while making his scrunchy face.

"For real, bro. Crack your window bro, please, I don't want this truck to reek like pot." I spy my shades—I always toss 'em on the dash and wonder where they've disappeared to. This kush is killer, I pass it right back after a single hit. I don't see any reason to act like a stoned idiot around Benny, or whoever else might roll up.

"What's she like? She cute?"

"Dude. For Real."

"Ooohh?" He giggles and passes back the spliff.

I take another puff, and hold it in, not wanting to appear like I'm wasting it. "Yeah man," I rasp, and exhale, "Voluptuous, brown hair, down as fuck. Total stunner, you'd have to get whiskey-dicked to last a minute." I pass the joint back and face his disapproval; I see it on his lips. "What man?"

"Dahl's in love again." He chants like a skip rope song from third grade.

"Aw, c'mon."

"Dahl, you know you're a sucker for any cute chick."

"Nah man, for real, she's sending me signals."

He laughs, taps the joint out against the door. "Even when we play battle royale you lose all focus anytime a player with a female voice comes in chat. You're always seeing signals man, desperate for love bro, and you don't need to be, you're smart, built to stud, and under all that grease your parents raised you right."

"God, I sound terrible when you put it like that." We slow-boat over to where the black and yellow dozer turns the green sod into black—roaring like a mechanical 'Fuck you' to nature.

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