Freeman’s Town

Valerie and Aubrey at the bar as Jim sleeps behind them
Photo by: Tin Can Bros

Valerie and Aubrey at the bar as Jim sleeps behind them Photo by: Tin Can Bros

Connor Delaney’s car breaks down outside a dustbowl town called Freeman’s Town. The place isn’t on many maps and has a small population of less than a hundred and that holds a big secret. He walks into town and sees Aubrey Sybilus and Demitri McCoy fighting outside only to be interrupted by Valerie Bennett. Valerie offers Connor a drink at a bar where they meet Jim and James Bolton, only for the secret to be revealed.


“Hey guys, what can I do ya for?” He asked, fumbling with his hands. 

“Four of Jeremiah’s best,” Valerie said.


Bolton turned and perked up, “Four?” He turned and saw Connor sitting at the barstool, slightly turning with it. Bolton looked at him nervously, like Connor would hurt him, “H-how did he get in? There’s not been someone new in-”


Demitri jumped in, “Bolton, baby, relax. Man is just having car troubles and should be back on the road soon. Right, Conan?”

“It’s Connor-”


“Brilliant! So! Four of your finest, Jimmy!”

Bolton sighed and he reluctantly poured a drink for them. He seemed nervous to be anywhere near Connor, “So long as he’d be out before the end of the week. You know how dangerous this is already.” Bolton leaned in to try and hide what he was saying from Connor but he heard anyway, “You know what happened last time.” 


Valerie huffed, “We’ll be fine. So long as James or Callahan don’t talk to him.”

The door swung open and revealed a tall dark-haired man in the doorway, “Hey guys!”


Aubrey stifled a laugh into Demitri’s shoulder as Demitri wheezed, “Val, Val, Val!” 

Valerie stared in awe and horror, shaking her head a little as the man sauntered into the tavern. 

“You were saying, Val?” Bolton sighed.


“How are you today, darling?” The man asked.

Valerie sighed and turned back to the bar, “Hello Callahan.”

“Demitri! Aubrey! I heard about the fight this morning, very exciting!”


Demitri seemed very annoyed by Callahan, “Yeah, nothing like some punches to get the blood flowing.” 

Callahan had now moved on to Bolton, “I see you’re as packed as ever.”


“Are you gonna buy something?” Bolton sighed, he was fidgeting with his hands but he wasn’t afraid of Callahan.

Callahan wandered around, seeming bored, “Sure, is Barney in? I wanna try some of that new pasta he was bragging about.” He looked to James who was still sleeping in the booth and covered in red sauce, “From the looks of it, he is here.” 

Callahan finally looked at Connor and looked confused, “I’ve never seen you before. You new?” 


Before Connor could answer, Demitri jumped in, “Ah, no he’s been here.”

“Really? Because I’ve been in this town for ages and never seen him before.”


Callahan wasn’t mean, he seemed more like the town idiot. He was just a blabbermouth, maybe that’s why the others were annoyed by him. Bolton looked around, “Ah, no Barney isn’t here today. Maybe come back tomorrow.” 

He came out from behind the bar and ushered Callahan out.

“Did someone call me?” A man, Barney, called from the kitchen. 


“Yes, Callahan, Barney is NOT in today!” Valerie said, looking back at Barney who now was backing back into the kitchen with his hands up.

“But I-” Callahan tried saying.


Aubrey and Demitri yelled out some goodbyes and ‘see you tomorrow.’s as Bolton shut the door. 

“Great John Donne.” He sighed, pressing his back to the door. 


Aubrey sat up, “Oh, I remember him!” 

Demitri and Valerie shot him a look before he spoke again, “From my books, of course. Read his poems in primary school.” 


“Of course! How else would you know him? Unless you were 500 years old.” Connor laughed.

The others shared an awkward laugh, “No, no. We are merely in our young 20’s.”


James sat up, “I’m not!” 

The others looked at him as he spoke again, “Y’all are babies if you’re only twenty.”


“Oh yes! James is older than Bolton,” Valerie explained. 

James was fully sitting up now, “No, I’m not, Val!” Man, you’ve only known me for 600 years.” 


“Certainly feels that way, James,” Demitri jumped in.


“Jimmy, you remember when that Kennedy chap died? You were investigated because you insisted you needed an umbrella.” James laughed.

Demitri jumped in, “James, I think you should go back to sleep.”


James looked at Demitri, “What? You don’t want me to spill the beans about the screw-up of April 15, 1865?” 


“You act like that was ages ago.” Bolton sighed.

Connor looked up, “It is if you’re claiming to be in your 20s in 2084.”


The others went quiet and James spoke again, “Oh was I not supposed to tell him we don’t grow old here?”