Carnivale
Outskirts, Damascus, NE

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Strega: A | Grade It Now!
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Self-Promotion

Ben walks over to the fallen car. He looks down at the unmoving little boy, and then hears the woman muttering, "Please God, take me, not my son," over and over and over. And over. Ben leans in close to listen. Samson happens to look around and sees Ben kneeling by the car. Ben closes his eyes, and the mother breathes, "Yes." Ben puts one hand on her cheek, and the music swells. Her eyelashes flutter. The music goes on swelling. Quite a few posters mentioned that they found this scene moving. Which is cool. I didn't, really, but it seemed worth mentioning that the scene was quite affecting among people who, y'know, aren't callous. Ben looks over at the little boy, who inhales suddenly and leans up, asking, "Mama?" He looks at his mother and starts crying, "Nooooo!" and I think that might be why I was unmoved. Plus the whole callous thing. Ben screams for a little help, and I half-expect someone to toss him a ball. Samson goggles as a man hurries over and carries the sobbing child away.

Later, the crowds, and bodies, have mostly cleared out. Samson shouts at some carnies to hurry up. Jonesy stands, staring up at the broken ferris wheel. Samson tells him to "stop standing around with [his] face hanging out," hee, and says that they have to make tracks. Jonesy orders his men to "break this bitch down." Then Samson walks toward the edge of the Carnivàle and sees the baggage trailer parked a little distance away. "What the hell?" he wonders.

Samson enters the baggage trailer and gazes around at the trunks and shelves. The Fetus In A Jar waves a big hello to all of its fans. "Thanks for your support!" he cries. "Look for me on an upcoming episode of C.S.I. Miami, where I play David Caruso's withered soul!" Samson moves deeper into the trailer. "Love Me or Leave Me" plays on an unseen phonograph as he looks around at all the kipple. Samson looks at a framed photo of a young boy and girl (presumably Justin and Iris). Then he finds the Shroud of Management on a shelf, draped so that the image of Management's face is clear. Samson sits on a trunk and stares at it. Then he stands, feels the edge of the sheet gently, and walks out. The Fetus in a Jar is now the Jar Without A Fetus. Poor, lonely jar.

Outside the trailer, Samson finds Ben standing nearby. Ben says, "I'm sorry about your friend." A wind blows, and Samson turns to see that the trailer is gone. Ben says, "Best I could do." Samson says that he'll help Ben, but that they'll have to have a different arrangement than Ben had with Management. He declares, "No more secrets. No more lies." Ben looks around like Samson might be talking to someone else, and then spreads his hands and insists, "I don't lie." Samson spits in his hand, and Ben does likewise, and they shake. Samson explains that Ruthie saw Scudder get nabbed last night. Ben grumbles, "He's takin' him back to the preacher." Samson, yet again, does not ask what the hell Ben's talking about. Ben says that Varlyn's already a day ahead of them, "We ain't even started, we already lost." Samson says, "I got gasoline and rubber. A four-bit wager says we haven't." Ben translates, "Fifty cents." Samson says, "Iron money."

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Carnivale

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