Medicine Woman

Posted: July 26, 2014 by writingsprint in Drama
Tags: , , , , , , ,
Grace Potter

“Grace Potter” by Brittney Bush Bollay at Flickr

Paul and Tasha had one last thing to do before they left town. Tasha had a farewell gig with Smoky Burn at the Barn. The Burn mostly played covers of chick rock – Melissa Etheridge, Joan Jett, Grace Potter, stuff like that – and tonight would be Tasha’s last hurrah.

Paul watched her take the stage. Tasha Reynolds, the sweet girl from west Texas, and Paul Grange, the truck driver from Oklahoma. Who would have thought they’d be rolling out of here with a hundred thousand dollars of stolen money.

The band started up with a pounding beat. Tasha shook her head, white locks flipping left and right. She sure knew it. The band did too. The guitarist grinned as he watched Tasha fire up the crowd. They loved her here.

Policy woman got a hold on my baby
Since she come around, he ain’t been the same
She look at him with her dark brown eyes
She tell him things that would make a grown man cry

Paul smiled. “Medicine,” by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals. It could have been their theme song. A con artist had had Paul wrapped around her finger. She bled him dry, a little at a time, asking him to help her through rehab and nursing school that were all bullshit. Tasha knew a thing or two about how to spot a long con. Paul had saved her life in the Gulf War, and she made it her personal mission to make him better than even. Now they were partners.

You like the way she makes you feel
She got you spinning on her medicine wheel

He checked the audience. Everyone had their eyes on Tasha. The pit, the pool players, and the bartenders. Even the bouncers. The brown-eyed girl could weave one hell of a story, but Tasha shot straight. She sang to the crowd like they were her best friends. They all knew it.

Tasha had found all the saps caught in the girl’s web. Two other truckers. Three social workers. Two nurses. She’d made a fine living for herself.

Deep in the night, when no one’s around
I’ve got a plan to take that woman down

Between Tasha’s horse sense and Paul’s shared grief, they’d turned all of them against the brown-eyed girl within a day. She’d found them standing in her house, counting the money she’d hidden in the basement. They had their money back. The surplus had been his and Tasha’s finder’s fee.

Paul winced as he remembered the end. On his word, barely, they’d given her a five-minute head start. Paul hoped she’d had enough gas to outrun the people who’d chased her out of town. He didn’t want to have one more death on his conscience. The others hadn’t felt that way.

Now he and Tasha were sitting pretty, ready to start with a blank slate somewhere else. Tasha glanced at him as she rounded out the song. She gave him a secret smile.

Now I
I got the medicine that everybody wants
I got the medicine that everybody wants
I got the medicine that everybody wants
I got the medicine that everybody wants

I got the medicine…
I got the medicine…
I got the medicine…
I got the mediciiiiiine…

Paul’s heart pounded as Tasha drew out the note. Her voice rose. Paul thought it sounded like a guitar string strumming so loud and pure that everyone in the bar hung from it. He couldn’t take his eyes off her. Tasha screamed. The guitar burned like fire.

Paul felt like he let go of the string. He felt like he was falling.

Tasha looked at him. She looked right at him through the crowd. Solo, she sang, “I got the medicine that everbody wants.”

The crowd went wild. She held his eyes for one more second. Tasha closed hers, dropped her head to bow, then smiled and waved to the audience. “Thank you! Thanks, everybody!” It was going to be a great show tonight.

Paul didn’t hear them. All he could think was one thing.

Yes. She did.

Grace Potter rocks!

Photo credit: “Grace Potter” by Brittney Bush Bollay at Flickr
Photo is unmodified
Shared under Creative Commons license
Lyrics to “Medicine” by Grace Potter and the Nocturnals used without permission

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