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Creative Writing: American Dollars

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JAMES drove the Ford F150. William sat in the passenger seat, and Crocco sat in the middle. Two farmhands with assault rifles slung over their shoulders rode in the bed of the truck. James rolled down the driver side window and steered the Ford off Tolles Road. He pulled up to a guardhouse at the edge of a parking lot. A guard lifted a window. “Can I help you?” The guard asked. “I’m James Blake. This is Adrian Crocco, and that’s my father, William Blake. We’re you neighbors from over yonder at Blue Hills Orchard. We’re here to see John Ulbrich.” “What’s your business with Mr. Ulbrich?” “We’re building a new warehouse and we’d like to negotiate for some steel,” James said. “Don’t need Mr. Ulbrich for that. I’ll get you one of the foremen.” William …show more content…

American dollars? Oh, wait, that’s right, we’re not supposed to call them that anymore, I meant American gold certificates. Those aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on. The Canadians are paying me with hard currency – Canadian dollars. Now, if you’ve actually got some gold up on that estate of yours that I could exchange for Canadian dollars of Chinese yuan, then we might be able to make a deal.” “I don’t think you understand,” William said, leveling a steely gaze at John Ulbrich. “Your pollution is killing the river and anything that touches the river. I rely on the Housatonic for irrigation, and who knows if that sludge of yours is going to start leaching into the groundwater and contaminating our wells. We won’t know that until people start dropping dead or coming down with some strange new forms of cancer. In my mind, this is literally a matter of life or death.” “I see,” Ulbrich said, leaning back in his chair. “You’re a powerful man, Mr. Blake; not the type of man to back down from a fight, or take no for an answer. I’m also sure that if push came to shove you’ve got the muscle and firepower to come in here blasting. So, in the name of being neighborly, I’m going to let you in on a little secret. You guys,” Ulbrich said, looking over at the foreman and steelworkers. “Get the fuck out of here.” “You sure, boss?” The foreman

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