Montrose Pennylane was a principled man to a fault. Sitting in a truck-stop near the Canadian border he is trying to explain to a stranger the events that brought him there and how the high school English teacher had come to possess two large duffel bags, stuffed with stacks of compressed 100 dollar bills, tightly wrapped in plastic.
Clearly an angry man with extremely specific edict and standards, whether driving a car in traffic or walking down a side street, Mr. Pennylane knows best. Unyielding and certain are two words that define his disposition, which have both served his aforementioned anger well—don’t get him started on the shame of his kind father having once been a republican, or how corporate evil permeates through our world to the point of a local burrito joint exhibiting the audacity of charging extra for beans.
On that point one Rachael Eller agreed—the injustice of charging extra for beans on a burrito fueled a romantic flirtation that bloomed into ten years of marriage. Being fresh out of law school, this daughter-of-money wanted nothing to do with Hannon Eller’s wealth…that is, after allowing daddy to provide a life of privilege, buy her a sporty blue Lexus, and pay for the elite education she would use to defend the poor and wrongly persecuted…that is, until Rachael decided, eight years into her marriage with Montrose, to leave the Public Defender’s office and accept a corporate job.
To say Montrose Pennylane felt betrayed would be an understatement…but what has any of this to do with the two duffel bags stuffed with millions in cash? Who drove Montrose to that northern border truck-stop? Being environmentally conscious the righteous man refused to own a car—the sporty Lexus, of course, had left with Rachael.
The baggage of Montrose Pennylane is not without connection to the duffel bags, but many more pertinent items are in need of unpacking. The quiet stranger on an opposite end of the table in a truck-stop listens…will he speak? Does he already know more than he is letting on? Is the entire meeting far from coincidence, possibly nefarious in nature? Or simply part of a cosmic ballet to help Mr. Pennylane find peace with his fellow man, and within himself? Is the quiet stranger a hit man there to retrieve the ill-gotten loot or a kind man from Canada, eh?
Only the final pages can say.
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