Winged Him On Purpose

Radeane,

That officer took our money and disappeared. Maybe he got caught, but he hasn't turned us in yet. Either way, we're get it together to leave. The border's all locked up now. There's deportees and runaways all over. The Socialist Militia marched out, lined up on the towers, and trained their guns on the crowds. Doctor Fickle tried to break through in an old BMW loaded with letters and books, but they overturned his car and when he ran they winged him with a bullet. The good news is I think it was on purpose; The Cabinet hasn't given up yet, Deanie. We haven't been compelled to surrender our tokens of humanity to anyone yet but they've come after everything else. There's some places worse than this, some places where they can wake you up to make you sign the papers, take advantage and knock you out again before you've thought to fake it. Some people give it up for nothing. There's places where you have to become an animal to get ahead.

I don't see how we're ever going to get across, Deanie, so let's reschedule the rendezvous. If me and Jimmy head south now, we can work our way out the peninsula before the weather turns. It doesn't make sense anymore to have ourselves smuggled anywhere: the odds are too low and the price is too high. But if we land work as hands on a cruise liner, we could bail out when we got where we wanted to be. We could meet you in R.B. or Hatford, K., probably before Missy reaches marrying age. You think it over. Don't write me here, I'll be gone.

Artie.

Melissa,

Would you believe we only made it as far as Oxford before the engine blew? What luck! 'Least we think the engine blew, but the man here says it could be it just needs the valves ground. Either way, the car's no damned good anymore. We ain't coming after all.

Flibur

Doc Reed.

Please come quick. One of the Gustaf twins put a chicken in the well and didn't tell. Everybody is real sick.

Letters from Underground