Short Stories

William Morrow; ISBN 0-688-10824-5

==== Plot Line ====

Why would anyone want to kill Jerry Dwyer, the goofy, pleasant college kid who sold coffee at a convenience store? When the trail leads to the rough ex-con who is dating Smokey’s best friend, the case takes an alarming turn and Smokey must save her friend from a seductive, dangerously amoral criminal.

==== Excerpts ====

From Chapter 1

First they shot him in the mouth. His tongue split down the middle like a barbecued hot dog. That was from the .22. Of course, we didn't know that until the autopsy. Usually with stop-and-robs it's a quick, "Hand me the money"--"No, I won't"--BOOM!, and it's done. But there was something different here. Because first they shot Jerry Dwyer in the mouth, and then they went back for a bigger gun.

From Chapter 32

Bonnie and Clyde's bullet-riddled death car rests in the lobby at Whiskey Pete's. At the casino across the highway from the "Death Car," as it is billed, stands a ferris wheel you can ride at the Prima Donna casino. Up the road a little is Kactus Kate's, and beyond that the Gold Strike, behind which is nested, in this bleakest of terrains, the Sandy Valley Correctional Center, a medium-security state prison with rust-colored block houses and beige guard towers that stick up on the north and the south boundaries. Rectangular slits at the top of the towers look like the eyeshields of welders' masks, except that from the highway they seem to stare not at the yard, but at you. Guys at Sandy can look down at the Gold Strike and plot escape long enough to blow quarters down the chutes for the ten-thousand-dollar prize and then ride, man, outta there. I'd forgotten what Nevada could mean.

Here, in another life, I was Dusty Rose, and then I was Smokey Shannon. Alias Samantha Montiel, or, rather, the other way around. My hair was red, my legs were long, my costume was less than I now wear to bed. … Time does funny things to you. I think most people are basically the same all their lives, the same person. But I'm so many me's I'm going to have to start a color-coded file.