Tough-N-Dry (Fantasy)

Tough-N-Dry (Fantasy)

Eighty-five muggy New England degrees, at noon-thirty, and this man shows up on the job site, jacket buttoned to his neck, wearing gloves. Something like a sock bunches around his neck.  Slightly more curious than nervous, I introduce myself.

He responds, “Tough and dry.”  No name.

I look a question at him.

“Tough. And. Dry,” he says again, adding inexplicably, “You gotta clean the footings.”

I’m perplexed.  I’m looking at a life-sized Master of Spinjitzu, with warm, but agitated eyes. I’m trying to ascertain his unique power, wondering what I’ll need for a counter charm. His eyes say he’s one of the good guys. I look at his truck for clues.

Okay, the fact of the truck is a clue, even though I see no writing on it.  I ask for his name again. He responds, a bit annoyed with me now, “Tough-and-dry.”

Suddenly, I get it.  He’s here to tar and feather our foundation. I need to clear the footings of gravel so he can spray goo all the way to the ground.  He’s dressed to keep the fiberglass out of his skin.

I worry about his lungs, but I’m grateful he isn’t wearing a mask so I can see him smile when I confirm my conclusions.

“Yeeessss,” he drawls, a faint accent barely discernable.


Still, I look to the sky for signs of Flame the Fire Dragon.


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