Joined: 01 Jan 2008
|Posted: Tue Jan 25, 2011 3:47 pm Post subject: The Whiskey Runner-Part 2
|The following Saturday night, Johnny and David drove to Bill’s house near Millers Creek. David would be riding with Johnny on his first time out to show him some of the routes and introduce him to the buyers. As Johnny pulled into the driveway, one of Bill’s workers took the car to a whiskey still concealed somewhere deep in the woods back of Bills house. He filled the hidden compartment with fifty, one gallon jugs and brought it back thirty minutes later. Bill gave David some instructions, and they headed for the West Virginia Turnpike and on into South Bend Indiana where they would unload their precious cargo.
It was eight o’clock Sunday Morning when they pulled into an old warehouse at the edge of town where three men were waiting. David introduced them to Johnny as they unloaded the whiskey from the car. At fifty dollars a gallon, one of the men handed David twenty five hundred dollars. Johnny’s cut was five hundred, the rest went to Bill and the other moonshiners.
Leaving the warehouse they stopped for some breakfast then began the long trip back home. David drove while Johnny got some sleep. This was easy money Johnny thought, but he also remembered what Bill had told him. “Trust me Johnny, you will earn your money”. His thoughts then turned to Shania and he fell asleep a few minutes later.
Late that evening David drove the car into Jones’s shop for the night. He and Johnny then borrowed one of Jone’s cars in the shop and went home where Shania was anxiously waiting. When Johnny walked in the door she ran and threw her arms around him. “Oh Johnny. I love you so much,” she said. He handed her the five hundred dollars and told her to add it to their building fund. Shania was thrilled. She didn’t say anything, but wished he would not go on the road again. The next day Johnny went to work at the shop and made some minor adjustments to the black Ford’s engine. David had delighted in how well it handled and Johnny was very pleased with her performance.
It was about noon when David came by the shop and told Johnny to be ready for another trip the following night. He gave Johnny a map, told him to study it carefully and know where every highway and side road was between Wilkes County and Michigan. The Feds may be watching for him. David was going to haul a load to Maryland in one of Bill’s cars. He and Johnny would meet at Bill’s place tomorrow night at nine o’clock sharp. When Johnny told Shania he was making another run tomorrow night she almost cried. She knew Johnny loved the excitement and that she would have to resign herself to the fact that Johnny was now a whiskey runner and nothing she could say would change that.
The following night, Johnny and David arrived at Bill’s house at nine p.m. ready to go. Fifty five gallons of top grade distilled spirits were siphoned into the black Ford, and Johnny was gone in a flash. His intuition told him to stay off the turnpike and use the back roads all the way to Bluefield, West Virginia. Being watchful and completely aware of everything around him, he guided the black beauty effortlessly around the winding roads and ‘S’ curves slowing down for the small communities along the way. Although there was no traffic on the highway, Feds could be lurking on the side roads.
Johnny was headed for Charleston, West Virginia, then Flat Rock, Michigan to dispense his cargo. Everything was fine till about a mile out of Bloomingrose when he picked up headlights in his rearview mirror. Johnny watched as they quickly began closing on him. He jammed the stick into third gear and floored the accelerator. The black monster lit up the tires as it leaped forward. In few seconds he topped a hundred miles per hour and with the specially built suspension, the car floated around the sharp turns. Johnny reached over to the dash and flipped a switch he had installed for situations like this. Instantly the tail lights and stop lights went dark. He was literally invisible to anyone behind him.
Johnny, thinking the feds believed he was headed for Charleston, continued on the back roads leading to Huntington, and the state line. He watched carefully for the next twenty miles. No one seemed to be following him so he turned on his tail lights once again, then dropped back to normal speed. Without further incident Johnny made it to Huntington where he crossed the Ohio River and drove on into Flat Rock, Michigan. There he dropped off the liquid gold and collected the money. By now he was too excited to sleep, so he decided to drive back to Wilkes County that same day.
Shania was outside gathering flowers to place on the dining room table as Johnny pulled up in the driveway. She was so relieved and excited to see him safely back home that she dropped the flowers and ran throwing her arms around him as if to never let go. A tear of joy appeared in Johnny’s eye as he embraced his beautiful Shania. He loved her dearly. As they walked into the house he gave her another five hundred dollars for their building fund. The next day Johnny drove out to Bill’s house and gave him his share of the whiskey money. Johnny told him of the incident on the road and Bill decided they would at least repaint the car a factory blue after his next run which would be next Sunday. It was only a few days till Sunday, but Johnny could hardly wait for his next run.
Although Johnny had been forced to surrender to the feds twice, he had eluded them several times and made twenty seven more successful runs after that Sunday. He and Shania now had enough money to build their dream home. They bought some beautiful land with rolling hills and a stream running through the south half, located near Boone, North Carolina. Two weeks later the foundation was laid at the bottom of a gently sloping hill near the stream. Their dream was finally becoming a reality and Johnny promised Shania he would stop running whiskey after the house was completed and begin his own custom rod shop in town. It was time to settle down and begin a new family in their new home. Shania was thrilled. Oh how she loved her dear Johnny.
It was early November when Bill called Johnny for a short run to Virginia. With the house nearly complete, Johnny told him this would be his last trip. He had promised Shania and he would keep his promise. Bill was disappointed to say the least, but understood and agreed that this would be the last time he would ask Johnny to make a run.
Normally David ran this route, but he came down with the flu and Bill’s customer was adamant about receiving his shipment. Johnny was the only alternative. He told Shania he had to do this and that it would absolutely be the last, no matter what.
It was ten PM as Johnny pulled onto the highway with his load. Normally this was only about a six hour run, but he had to stick to the back roads as much as possible because the feds had mounted a widespread alert. Everything went according to plan until he turned onto the main access road through Virgina where he spotted two suspicious vehicles ahead. Johnny skidded the monster Ford to a stop and quickly backed up to the road he had just left and began retracing his route back into West Virginia. The two vehicles then whirled around and began chasing him.
Johnny had a half mile jump on the feds but was quickly running out of options. As he wheeled the Ford around the hairpin turns he spotted two more fed vehicles ahead parked on the side of the road. There was only one thing he could do now. Turning off his lights Johnny came to a stop, turned his car around and pulled off the road. The feds chasing him would be coming around a curve and not see his vehicle till they were on top of him. Johnny would be long gone before they stopped and turned around. The probability of more feds ahead of him were nil.
Johnny changed his preplanned route and rolled into Virginia unscathed, delivering his cargo safely to his grateful client. The trip back home was quite uneventful as Johnny returned to the loving arms of his dear Shania.