One of those days: Part 13One of Those DaysPart 13The Silver StarThe bobcat led them to a booth in the rear of the diner, the window opened out across the parking lot and to the wooded hillside behind the diner, Merai could see Kadie from where she sat. "So is she really your mother?" she asked Quinn.The bobcat laughed heartily. "No! That's just old diner lore, these are all "Mom and Pop" places, so everyone here calls me Ma!""Ah, I see, ma, well, then, where's the ladies' room, I've had a bit of an exciting day, and I'd like to freshen up a bit.""It's right there around the corner, would you care for something to drink? It'll be here before you get back.""Oh, Iced tea, please." said Merai as she left the table."Quinn?""Coke, please"Quinn watched Merai walk down the aisle towards the restroom. Ma Kettle bent over towards him conspiratorially. "So, she seems to be a sweet girl, will we be seeing a bit more of her in the near f
One of those days: Part 12One of Those DaysPart 12A "Chance" EncounterMeanwhile, Merai felt frustrated, the directions Verne had given her were not that difficult, yet she still seemed to have missed a turn somewhere. She had just doubled back down the road when she saw the sign for the diner. "Ah, finally! That took a little longer than expected!" She pulled Kadie around back, the only place she could find a spot. She exited the car just as Quinn pulled into the parking lot."Hello! Quinn! Over here!" she flagged him down.The shocked young man pulled in beside her and stepped out of his car. "Miss,... Merai, is there something wrong?""No, Quinn, it's just nice to see you here, that is all!" she smiled disarmingly."Oh, well, heck, this is my favorite place to eat, the food is really good." Quinn scratched the back of his neck and shuffled his feet. "It looks fairly crowded in there, would you be willing to e
One of those days: Part 11One of Those DaysPart 11Verne is Subtle!"Wait, what?! Are you joking?" Merai was genuinely shocked at the forward manner of the beaver."Now I know you don't know me from Adam, ma'am, and this really ain't none o' my business and you have no reason to believe a word I'm about to tell you, but that boy is one of the most level-headed folks I ever met. He's practical, honest, and really knows his way around cars. I've worked with him for three years now since his daddy died, and I ain't never seen him act like this before."The beaver's words gave Merai pause to think. Yes he was indeed cute, and kind of funny, but she'd been burned twice before, did she really want to risk her heart again on a stranger she'd just met half an hour ago?"Well, what should I do?" she gave a default reply."Ma'am, I really can't tell you that, all you can do is follow what's in yer heart. All I know is that good things can't be rushed, but they also
One of those days: Part 10One of Those Days Part 10How to Impress a Girl"I saw you stranded on the side of the highway, I noticed the old car, so I slowed down, to get a better look, then I saw you had a flat, and sitting that close to the rear tire... I knew it couldn't have been good. But,..."Merai smiled at the young man "But you almost got rammed by the guy in the Beemer, I saw, Hee, hee, I thought I recognized your car in the parking lot here." Quinn still wouldn't look up at her. He overinflated the inner tube to make sure it would hold air and placed it on his workbench. "It's Ok, Quinn, you had a job to do, and responsibilities to meet, besides the day is almost over for you..."Quinn shuffled his feet. "Thank you Miss...""Merai, you can just call me Merai""Thank you Miss Merai, but it was still wrong, I saw someone in need of help, and I didn't. Excuses are kinda like our quills. T
One of those days: Part 9One of Those DaysPart 9 Quitting Time"What're you jawin' about boy, is it a bad valve stem?" the beaver asked waddled over to the tire mounting machine."Yes, what's wrong, can you fix it?" inquired Merai.Quinn fished inside the tire and produced a limp, black doughnut. "This car still has inner tubes! And yes I can fix this one, but the other," he motioned to the quill pricked tire, "will probably not be salvageable.""Hee, hee, I ain't never seen tubes in a car in ages, but yer old girl is a classic!""Do you have any spare inner tubes here?""No we don't, but the local auto mega mart has them, they're not that expensive, about $10." explained Quinn.Merai looked at her watch "How late are you guys open today? It's quarter to five. Do we have enough time to patch the tire and get a new tube?""Well," Verne looked at Quinn "Quittin' time is five here on a Saturday""Oh, how long wil
One of those days: Part 8One of Those DaysPart 8 Problems and SolutionsThe trip to Verne's garage proved mercifully short. Merai looked out the window of the tow truck's cab at the small establishment. The small garage appeared remarkably well equipped. Two vintage gas pumps out front gave the place a nice antique flavor, but displayed a very contemporary price indeed. The tire rack held an assortment of tires in various styles and sizes, although none of them had brilliant whitewalls like Kadie. Several cars parked out front showed the place did a respectable business despite having only two bays.Verne stepped out of the cab and announced into the garage "Hey Quinn, we have one last customer for ya, think we can get her on the road?""This'll be tight Verne, I promised Mrs. Caruthers that we'd have her tune up done by Monday." came a voice from behind the hood of a small Japanese car.
One of those days: Part 7One of Those Days Part 7 The Iron Duke!The beaver's face fell as air continued to jet from the tire. "No,... I,... Whut on earth?" he stammered. He dropped to his knees and felt around the wheel."Oh really?" said Merai through half lidded eyes."This is impossible! It don't make sense, I've done this a thousand times!" Verne was at a genuine loss for words. "Here feel, the patch I made isn't leaking, the air's coming out ... the valve stem?"Sure enough, the beaver spoke the truth. A steady flow of air streamed around the valve stem. "I'm sorry, ma'am, I don't have a bead breaker here, otherwise I could fix this too. We'll have to tow her back to the garage, I really am sorry." the beaver looked crestfallen that he failed in his duty.Merai smiled. "It's Ok, I was pleasure cruising today, I don't have anywhere
One of those days: Part 6One of Those Days Part 6 A Quick Fix!Merai watched curiously as the beaver went to work. He inflated the tire with the compressor and then carefully rotated it around. "And here's yer problem!" he said truimphantly. "Jes' a little hole makin a big problem! Well I got the fix right here!" The beaver rummaged in his toolbox and produced a few items. First was a "T" shaped rasp which he plunged repeatedly into the tire filing the hole a bit. "First we clean the injury! Next we get the red rubber boogers of tire repair!"Verne got a plastic package with what looked like several large, stringy, red worms. He pulled one out and threaded it halfway through what looked like a giant sewing needle, again attached to a large "T" handle. "A little lubrication to make things go in easier, and help seal the hole..."