Over (5) Original Ending

Ed Dean came back over Here to see me again, and to ask about the Cowboy.

“Was that really who I thought it was?” he asked me for the 5th time.

“Seems so” I said as I was lazily pushing peanuts around the bar with my right hand. “He did become a father and that stuck in the headlines, so maybe he has a better chance than I thought he did.”

“Then why do you look so vacant?” Ed had a way of describing my moods to perfection.

He started reorganizing peanuts with me when a faint tremor rattled the building. We both closed our eyes for a minute, maybe out of habit or as a denial, either way the light bulbs dimmed and sizzled before returning to their original brightness, and lightening struck out on the hiway.

When the commotion had stopped I sighed heavily and reached under the bar to pull out the metal suitcase.

Inside was the newest headline, the date making it official, “August 16, 1977”.

I closed the lid and walked over to the front window and turned over the old sign to Closed, and took my apron off and carelessly let it fall to the floor.

“Closed? I’ve never seen you close this place” Ed said with a tinge of hysteria in his voice.

“It won’t be forever” I reassured him, “just for awhile, but we have to hurry, the dawn is coming.”

True to my word the oranges and yellows began appearing on the horizon, the bridge was shimmering like a mirage, we had to get over it quick.

We both turned one last time and looked at the old tavern, it too was fading in the new morning light.

“Why did we have to leave?’ Ed asked me again.

I had forgotten that he didn’t see the headline like I did, so I simply responded

“Because Elvis has left the building.”



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