Main Street, U.S.A: Stories from America’s Town

“Extra! Extra! Read all about it!” Paul shouted in his best newspaper voice. “The South has capitulated!” He shouted the big word to attract the attention of the man in a top hat with a gold watch chain that disappeared into a vest pocket near the middle of his ponderous belly. “The South has given up!” He shouted in the direction of a man carrying a tool box and wearing blue coveralls. “The South has thrown in the towel!” He shouted toward a man who he knew liked sports, especially bare-knuckle brawling and wrestling.

“The North wins!” He shouted toward a man dressed in a dark blue uniform leaning on a wooden crutch. His cap was colored blue as well. Its front brim was black, and the middle of the forefront had a pair of crossed sabers in gold. His jacket had two gold bars on the right shoulder, and his right pant leg was folded back behind him to keep it from dragging on the ground and accentuating the place where his lower leg should’ve been.

“The war is over!” Paul shouted in the direction of a group of musicians who were setting up in the town square. Dressed in black, they were from a religious group that didn’t believe in fighting for any reason. Their wide-brimmed, black hats marked them as Peace Panthers. Men with long beards and women with short hair wore the long cassocks that extended just past their ankles. “Peace prevails!” Paul shouted in another effort to get their attention.

Paul frowned. He had sold more newspapers when there were battles and blood and fighting. If the next couple of weeks were this bad, he may have to find another line of work. He wasn’t sure what that line of work be for someone in his youth; he just knew that this peace business wasn’t profitable for a newsie.

He held up the paper again, “Extra! Extra! Read all about it!” The Peace Panthers sat down on their makeshift chairs and pulled out their instruments. His voice wouldn’t be able to compete with them when they started playing. Paul looked up at the train station clock. If he hurried, he could make it to the platform before the train arrived. Maybe, the new people coming through town would buy a paper.

Author’s Note: This is something I have been playing with for a while. I don’t know if I’m going to take it further. What do you think? Check out the next section: At the Train Station.