The City of Fire (Chapter 5, page 1 of 11)


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Chapter 5

The whistle of the Cannery at Sabbath Valley blew a relief blast five
minutes ahead of midnight in deference to the church chimes, and the
night shift which had been working overtime on account of a consignment
of tomatoes that would not keep till Monday, poured joyously out into
the road and scattered to their various homes.

The outmost of these homegoers, Tom McMertrie and Jim Rafferty, who
lived at the other extreme of the village, came upon a crippled car,
coughing and crawling toward them in front of the Graveyard. Its
driver, much sobered by lack of stimulant, and frequent necessity for
getting out and pushing his car over hard bits of road, called to them
noisily.

The two workmen, pleasant of mood, ready for a joke, not altogether
averse to helping if this proved to be "the right guy," halted and
stepped into the road just to look the poor noble car over. It was the
lure of the fine machine.

"Met with an accident?" Jim remarked affably, as if it were something
to enjoy.

"Had toire thrubble?" added Tom, punching the collapsed tires.

The questions seemed to anger the driver, who demanded loftily: "Where's your garage?"

"Garage? Oh, we haven't any garage," said Jim pleasantly, with a mute
twinkle in his Irish eye.

"No garage? Haven't any garage! What town is this,--if you call it a
town?"

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