Enter Stage Right

by: Essy Jane

Welcome to Chicago. Yeah I know what you’re thinking now. What are we doing here? Aren’t we supposed to start out in Hazzard County? Well, I don’t choose where we are, I just tell you about it. After all, I am just the balladeer. Okay, let’s get back to the story now.

Anyway, we’re in a very spacious apartment. The walls were painted a rose pink. The floor was hardwood. The table in the living room was made out of a fine glass. In fact, everything in that house seemed to beautiful to touch. From the furniture right down to the dishes.

Not everything was beautiful in this apartment. Many things kept the place from being perfect. So many dark shadows cast upon this place that were never meant to be here. In this, one of the most beautiful apartments, you would expect happiness. However, it was seldom seen. In fact, right now if you listen to that nasty noise…that horrible screaming. Yep, right in the kitchen. Here we go.

“I’ve had it, you’re not going to Kansas this year,” Cara said to her daughter. Daisy shook her head and rolled her eyes. Cara stared coldly at her daughter. “You know better than to act that way with me child. I am your mother.” Daisy couldn’t believe her Mom. She was being so unreasonable.

“Mom, I’m sixteen years old now. Why can’t I make my own decisions? I have gone to visit Uncle Jose every single year since I was six. Now you’re telling me I don’t get to go?” Daisy answered, filled with anger.

“You’re still fifteen for another two months.” Daisy sighed. Her mom always had to point out the obvious. Cara was just like that. Daisy knew her mother had no adventure in her. It was as if she had drained it out of herself on purpose. “Two months is quite the difference for you, child.”

“Two months, big deal. In the olden days, people got married younger than I am.”

“Yeah it is a big deal. Daisy, the old days are dead. You’re fifteen.”

“Sixteen.”

“You’re not sixteen.” Cara began pacing back and forth. All she wanted to do was get the words out so her daughter would understand her point of view. “You don’t have the maturity to accomplish anything. You think that life is a big game.”

“No I don’t Mother, you remind me that it’s not every day.” Cara rolled her eyes and shook her head. She couldn’t believe her daughter.

“After all I have done for you…”

“What have you done?”

“Think about it Daisy, I work for you.”

“Yeah, when you’re not working for yourself.”

“Don’t play games with me all the time. Do you have all the kinds of clothes you have ever wanted?” Daisy growled. Cara didn’t understand anything about her daughter.

“Clothes don’t replace you.”

“You get the best cell phones.”

“Yeah, you never leave yours on.”

“I bought you everything.”

“It doesn’t buy back you.” Cara got right up into Daisy’s face. Daisy turned away. Her mom grabbed her as Daisy went to walk away. “Don’t do that to me again.”

“I’m sorry Daisy but I don’t see what your problem is.”

“Mom, they did a study on monkeys. One set of monkeys were fed and had their basic needs met. The other had a doll put with them in which they could snuggle it and love it.”

“I don’t see your point.”

“The monkeys who were just fed died.”

“So?”

“Don’t you see? Like the monkeys, I need love. You send me down to Kansas and…”

“And what? Let you get away with murder?”

“Fine, keep me here and take a few weeks off.”

“I can’t.”

“You haven’t been on a vacation since I was born.”

“I can’t afford to.”

“You haven’t taken any time to be with me.” Daisy shook her head. “When I was sick instead of staying home with me, you phoned up a hygienist friend of yours that you knew was off work.”

“Daisy, don’t be so melodramatic.”

“Mom, why are you like that?” Daisy sighed. She tried to think of something to solve this but nothing came to mind. “Look, at least if you’re not going to spend time with me, you can send me to Kansas where someone will.”

“No Daisy you look, I told you that if you didn’t get an A average that you were going to loose some privileges. Now I am a mother to you and you can’t seem to take it? What do you want me to do? Either I am your mother or I am not.”

“Oh yeah, like everyone can get that kind of an average, I am not you, Mom.”

“You could be if you would just use the potential sitting up in that head of yours.”

“I do use it.”

“You don’t, you play around all day. You daydream.” Daisy sighed, she couldn’t believe she had to listen to this. “You should be concentrating on your studies.”

“How would you even know what I do?”

“Trust me Daisy, I know.”

“Well maybe if you paid an ounce of attention to me…!”

“Daisy! Do not raise that tone with me. I am still your mother no matter how much you hate me.”

“You can’t hate a person you don’t KNOW.”

“What do you mean?”

“You know, my cousins in Georgia and in Kansas do more for me than you do. I don’t even get to see the ones in Hazzard. You always try to take something away from me. I am sick of it. So what? I got a B.”

“It was a B minus. You have to start taking responsibility.” Cara looked at her watch. “Oh great, now I am late for work! Thanks a lot Daisy!”

“Yeah, convenient how you can just get up and leave for work.”

“Daisy…”

“While you leave me here to suffer, you always do everything while I am stuck. Now you’re leaving me alone all summer? So I end up having to go through therapy for the rest of my life because my mother doesn’t care.”

“I care.”

“Yeah right.”

“You are not doing this to me today.”

“Oh I think I am, MOTHER.”

“Daisy, I don’t have time for this, I’ll see you when I get home.” Cara walked out of the apartment. Daisy shook her head.

“I don’t have time for this Daisy,” Daisy mimicked. She began to clean up the breakfast she had made. “Summer vacation is just around the corner and I am stuck here. While Coy, Vance, Luke and Bo are having fun—I am in this suck fest.” Daisy shook her head. “No, she’s not doing this to me.”

Daisy walked into her room. She looked at the suitcase she had already packed for Kansas. Daisy picked up her stuffed animal who she had named Toto. Why? Jose got it for her. She really loved that little stuffed animal.

“It’s not fair is it?” Daisy asked the stuffed animal. “Oh what can you tell me? You’re just a stuffed animal.” Daisy started laughing. “I must really be loosing my mind!” She shrugged and smiled, looking at the door. “Kansas here I come.”

Daisy walked out the door and headed towards the bus station. When she found that she didn’t have enough money, Daisy couldn’t believe it. She walked over to the next best place, hoping to hitch a ride.

While Daisy hid in the shadows, she overheard one of the guys say that the two delivery trucks were headed towards Hazzard and Wichita, which was where Jose and Jesse lived. Which truck was which? Not even the young woman could tell the difference.

On one hand, Daisy could get in the wrong truck and end up in Hazzard, a place she had never been to. On the other hand, she could go to Wichita and have a good time with her Uncle Jose. Either way, Daisy would anger her mother and either way she would be happy. Although she still wanted to go and see Jose.

Daisy picked her the one with her favorite number on it and got in. The young woman knew it would be a long adventure but didn’t care…anywhere was better than Chicago. Anywhere away from her mother would be a paradise to the young woman. As the truck began moving, the vibrations put her to sleep.

2

Over in Hazzard County, the next day, school was still in session for the Duke Boys. Luke smiled as he looked at his letterman’s jacket. Bo began laughing. “I’ve got one too, you don’t have to show off to me,” Bo said.

“I just feel like…” Luke began.

“You have Hazzard spirit?”

“No you nerd, I feel like I am a part of something.”

“Luke, they made you the quarter back after they discovered you.”

“Okay, well track star why didn’t you join football, you’re way better at it than I am.”

“Why don’t I join boxing? It’s your thing—I may be good at it but doesn’t mean I should step on your toes and kick the snot out of you.”

“You joined karate.”

“Yeah, so did you.”

“Why didn’t you get mad when I did that?”

“Something to do together.” Bo laughed. Suddenly something caught his attention. He glared out into the distance. “Hey, what is Beefy Bill doing with Susanna? He’s mugging her.”

“How would you know? It’s not like you can read lips.”

“Sure I can.” Bo stared at both of them. Bo was about to read lips y’all. Now, since this ain’t like a normal Hazzard adventure, pink will be when he uses his girly voice and blue will be when he uses his man voice.

“Bill, leave me alone.”

“Now why would I go and do something like that, Susanna? Look you have money and I want it. Call it a finder’s fee.” Bill put his hand out. Susanna hit it

“My Mama gave it to me for lunch.”

“I don’t care if your brother’s mother gave it to you.”

“Why do you have to be so mean?”

“It’s my calling, sister. Now, hand over the cash.”

“I’ll go hungry.” She began to cry.

“That’s not my problem little girl.”

“Can’t you earn your money like everyone else? Then you could leave me alone. Please, just let me keep my money. I want to eat today.”

“As I said, I want your money not your excuses.”

“Please, leave me alone. I beg you, leave me alone.” She began to cry.

Luke’s eyes widened. He looked over at Bo, shocked by what he had just pulled off. “You see,” Bo commented.

“Yeah, you can read lips. I guess you were right. You’re goanna do something stupid ain’t ya?” Luke asked.

“Luke, I ain’t goanna do something stupid.”

“Oh that’s good because judging by your face cousin, you look like you are goanna do something really stupid. I am so glad you have mastered the art of self control.”

“Luke I am goanna teach Beefy Bill a lesson in etiquette!”

“You said you weren’t going to do anything stupid…now Bo, I may not be an expert but I think this is in the category.”

“Oh words don’t hurt.”

“Uh huh, if you say so little cousin. Bo, just don’t say anything stupid.”

“I’ll try.”

“Great.”

“Don’t worry, I am okay.” Luke rolled his eyes.

“Yeah, if you say so.”

“I know so.” He walked over to Beefy Bill as he was about to take Susanna’s money. “Hey you repulsive hideous gorilla. You leave this gal alone!” Bill stood up straight.

“Are you talking to me?” Bill asked.

“No!” Bo rolled his eyes. He couldn’t believe the guy was so dense. ”I am talking to the guy behind you who is named Beefy Bill…how many Beefy Bills are there?” Now Bo, why did you have to go and do that? If you know anything about those bad bullies, you know not to use the old sarcasm with them.

“You are talking to me.” Bill stood taller than Bo, at least by a foot. He looked down upon Bo. “Now let me ask you swine, what gives you a right to talk to me? I didn’t tell you ya could.” Bo shook his head.

“Just leave her alone moron.”

“What did you call me?”

“Moron—do you want me to spell that for you? M-O-R-O-N It means that you are a slightly held back person. You seem to loose all the concepts when they’re not explained to you. You only hear moron. So, let me give it to you straight…leave Susanna alone.” Bo began to walk away. Beefy Bill picked up a baseball bat.

“BO, WATCH OUT!” Luke screamed from across the room. Bo ducked. He kicked the baseball bat right out of Bill’s hands. Now the young Duke boy may have been smaller than Bill but he was no weakling.

“Nice try cowboy. Why don’t you try aiming next time?” Bill tried to punch Bo and he blocked it. As a gang of Buford’s boys surrounded Bo—Luke rolled his eyes and got up.

Now if you know anything about Bill, you’ll know about his older brother Buford. Mister Beefy Bill was nothing compared to his brother. The one thing that you must remember is that Buford had been kicked out of almost every school in the south. Now isn’t that progress.

Buford loved his little brother, furthermore this young pathetic brother would be protected to the end. Now that’s love folks. The Ramsay brothers always were together on everything. Even shared clothes. No wonder you couldn’t tell which one was younger.

Anyway, Bo was in trouble and Luke knew he had to help his cousin before he was—well, lunch meat. Luke opened the circle of morons and stood beside his cousin. The football team looked at the two boys and knew that they had to help. After the football team appeared well—let’s just say all the punks were with Buford to make it fair.

“What are you doing to my cousin?” Luke questioned.

“Who are you to talk Duke? He insulted my brother’s honor,” Buford grumbled.

“And he was breaking that Sue’s honor.” Buford shook his head and punched Luke in the nose, at the same time Billy punched Bo. The fight was on.

The minute that the Duke boys threw a shot, everyone was in on it. People were flying. Some were still fighting. They were all doing well. No one was doing better than Bo and Luke. They were on their tenth set of boys.

As the principal walked in, everyone seemed to stop on the spot. Bo and Luke looked up at him. “Who started this fight?” Principal Walton asked Bo and Luke.

“Well it was Billy and Buford but…” Bo began.

“We were in on it too,” Luke commented.

“Buford—Billy, to my office now as for you Bo and Luke, you sit inside the office until I am done with those two.” Bo, Buford, Luke and Billy all headed upstairs.

Bo and Luke kicked their legs to the music that the receptionist was playing. “Weren’t goanna get into trouble, huh?” Luke asked. Bo shrugged.

“What was I supposed to do? Let her get hurt?” Bo questioned. Luke sighed. He knew that his cousin was right. “Uncle Jesse would have totally agreed with me.”

“He doesn’t agree with fighting in school.”

“Luke, she was going to go hungry.”

“Then share your bagged lunch with her.”

“Luke…”

“I don’t condone what you did little cousin.”

“But…”

“But your reasons were valid.”

“He tried to hit me with a bat. That was reason enough for me to punch his lights out. I would do it again too.” Luke rolled his eyes.

“No, I mean about defending Susanna, that was the valid reason. As for the baseball bat, you could have blocked it and walked away.” Bo laughed hesitantly.

“Yeah—that’s what I meant….about Susanna I mean.”

“Look, I am just glad they didn’t kill you. He has many people behind him. You know that as well as I does. You could have been killed.”

“Well if the wrestling team ate downstairs…”

“I know.”

“They would have beaten them dudes till next month.”

“You know why the football team came to your aid?”

“Why?”

“They want you on the team.”

“Luke…”

“Hey, you’re good.”

“Yeah thanks but I have enough sports to worry about.”

“You’re sure?”

“Well maybe next year…the season’s over.” Luke began laughing. He shook his head. “Well it is over, Luke. You can’t deny that one.”

“Man you are one different person.”

“We should celebrate our differences.”

“Do you have an answer for everything?”

“I guess I do.”

“No wonder you get in trouble a lot.”

“Now that’s an understatement.” Luke smiled. He couldn’t believe how proud his cousin was about this one.

“I guess it is.”

“One of these days, I’ll fix the problems in this world.”

“When you’re off probation.”

“Yes, when I’m off probation…hey.”

“You gotta admit, there ain’t much you can do right now.” Bo shrugged.

“I could say the exact same thing about you.” The Ramsay brothers walked out. They looked at Bo and Luke.

“You two better watch your backs,” Billy commented. Bo said nothing. He didn’t want to make the situation any worse than it was. The Ramsay brothers walked into the vice principal’s office.

“That was very mature,” Luke said, surprised by Bo’s act.

“You know, sometimes you have got to realize when to shut up,” Bo replied.

“You couldn’t think of doing that down in the cafeteria?” Bo shrugged once again. “How do you do that?”

“Do what?”

“Shrug your way through life.”

“Well it’s all in the shoulders.” Luke began laughing once again.

“Come on in Boys,” Principal Walton called from his office. Bo and Luke stood up, their eyes both shifted. Neither one of them liked the principal’s office.

Bo hadn’t been there a lot even though a lot of people where sure he had been. You see, Bo was generally a good student. Great grades were behind the young Duke Boy. Teachers thought it was harmless what he was doing.

Luke had been in there once and that was mostly for business. You know how Luke is, always helping out people in need. Well Principal Walton always could count on the older Duke Boy to help around the school. The best fundraisers happened because of Luke.

“Have a seat Bo and Luke, I am not going to bite you,” Principal Walton announced.

Luke sat down on the far left. He sat up straight in the chair, crossing his right leg over his left. Bo on the other hand moved his chair right up to the principal’s desk. He somewhat jumped up on the chair, putting his feet cross legged. Mr. Walton sighed. He couldn’t believe how different those two were. Yet they seemed to get along so well.

Bo was almost fearless, coming towards him proved that. He seemed to always want to be stronger and better. Still, Bo was extremely care free on some things. Like school—it was a total bore for him but he still did very well. Luke never did learn his secret.

Luke on the other hand was quite the quiet one except for when he had to be. Luke always knew

“Now Bo and Luke…” Principal Walton began. Bo wouldn’t let him finish a sentence.

“Luke didn’t have anything to do with this.”

“Bo…”

“No, let me finish here.” Bo sighed. He looked at his cousin. “It was all me. Look, he didn’t even want me to go. The only reason he came in was because there were so many and he didn’t want me to get hurt. Susanna was in big trouble and I…”

“Bo, you interrupted me.”

“I’m sorry sir.”

“Now, you know what comes of fighting don’t you?”

“Expulsion…I know exactly what comes of it.”

“Billy and Buford were expelled from school for fighting and bullying.” Bo sighed softly. He shook his head and looked at the principal, right in the eyes.

“Oh no, hey, you have got to believe me that Luke wasn’t any part of this. Expel me…leave Luke alone though as I said…”

“Bo, if you would ever let me finish you would know that I am not expelling you two.” Bo looked confused.

“But…”

“Susanna told me what was going on before I got downstairs. You two are not big trouble makers in this school.”

“Thank you so much.”

“Don’t thank me yet.”

“We’re suspended?”

“For the rest of the year. We’ll see you next year.” Bo shook his hand.

“Ain’t you goanna call our Uncle?” Luke asked.

“Nah, I know you boys will tell him. Now, I’ll walk with you and unload your lockers while my sidekick calls the Ramsay boy’s parents.” Bo and Luke smiled but they weren’t out of this yet.

3

In town, something big was about to take place. Daisy stretched as the truck stopped. She moved behind a box, pulling her sleeping bag and other items back in her bag. Daisy held onto Toto. The truck was opened for a moment and the young woman waited patiently for a moment to get out. Finally, the men went inside.

Daisy walked out and began running away. She hid behind the wall, watching as she saw two people working. “That’s Bo and Luke,” Daisy said to herself. She had seen pictures of them but never met them before. Daisy swallowed hard. “I am so in the wrong place.

“You see the punishment for getting suspended? Do you think we would be doing this normally?” Luke questioned.

“OH come on Luke, you know as well as I do Uncle Jesse could have done a lot worse to us. Unloading a truck ain’t that bad,” Bo replied.

“You don’t think so?”

“Heck no, take the boxes move them over there. Then grab some more boxes and move them again…okay fine, it is boring.”

“I thought he would have chained us up in our rooms.” Daisy smiled. “Then again anything would be better than this.”

“Including bread and water only?”

“Oh yeah.” Daisy giggled softly, realizing what she did, Daisy covered her mouth. As Bo looked over her way, she hid.

“Did you hear that Luke?”

“Hear what?” Bo began to walk towards where Daisy was set. She began running away.

She suddenly stopped as she looked around. This place looked like something out of a cowboy movie. The majority of the buildings were as old as time.

She looked at her stuffed animal. “Toto, I don’t think we’re in Kansas. We got on the wrong truck. I thought I was right,” She mumbled to herself. She shook her head and started to run again, bumping into people along the way.

As Daisy continued running through the walk ways of Hazzard, the young woman bumped into someone and fell. “Oh my goodness, I am so sorry,” Daisy said. She looked up at the young man and him at her. He was staring into her eyes.

“I’m sorry too,” The man said. Daisy examined his clothes. He was wearing a mountie like hat with a gold rope around it. His shirt was a sky blue. Daisy touched his badge.

“What’s your name?”

“My name’s Enos—what’s yours?”

“I’m Daisy.”

“Daisy—what a beautiful name that is, tell me Miss Daisy, what were you doing running so fast in the streets of Hazzard?”

“Umm…passing through on my way to Kansas—I don’t really know anyone in town but I thought it looked good.”

“Do you have any money?”

“A few hundred for food…I am kind of stranded.” Enos always was good natured. He wanted to help those in need. So when Daisy said she was stranded, he wanted to help her.

“I’ll tell you what, you can stay at my house and Bo and Luke will help you…”

“Umm…I don’t want anyone else to help me but you. I am kind of a shy one you know.” Enos didn’t think too much about it. He didn’t care about her reasons.

“I have a tree house…I could always bring you food Miss Daisy.” Enos smiled softly. “You won’t have to worry about anyone bugging you up there.” Daisy smiled. She could feel the kindness in Enos’ heart. She appreciated every bit of his help.

Meanwhile, at the farm, Jesse had just gotten in from a long day in the fields. Right after he was done washing his hands and drying them, the phone rang. “Hello?” Jesse questioned.

“Hey Jess—it’s me, Jose,” Jose replied.

“Well I figured that much. What’s up, you never call me this early in the day.”

“Well…you see…”

“What’s wrong, are Coy and Vance giving you a hard time?”

“Oh no, Jesse it’s nothing like that. Coy and Vance are at school right now.”

“I wish I could say the same for mine.”

“What do you mean?”

“They were suspended for fighting in school. Don’t worry punishment is in motion right now. So why did you call then?”

“Well you see, Paige got this desperate phone call from Cara begging to talk to her daughter.”

“Weird.”

“Not as weird as you would think. Her daughter left a note under her pillow saying goodbye to her mother. Cara has been searching frantically for her daughter for the last two days. No one has seen or heard from Daisy.” Jesse shook his head.

“Did Cara tell you why Daisy might have run away?”

“Well, she told Daisy she couldn’t come to Kansas.”

“Wrong move when her mom doesn’t pay any attention to her.”

“Yeah, I couldn’t say that to Cara though. In her state she would come down to Kansas and slap me one right across the face.”

“So is Daisy there?”

“No, I wish I knew where she was. That girl is such a wonderful one. Cara said that she took her dog I bought for her. She doesn’t go anywhere without that dog.” Jesse sighed.

“So the question is why did you call me?”

“Well it was the only place that I thought she might go to make her Mom mad.”

“Ah—umm come again?”

“Daisy told me once that her Mom refused to let her even visit you or your boys. I didn’t understand. I mean Hazzard was so wonderful.”

“Hazzard still is so wonderful.”

“Oh Jesse, I know that but Cara doesn’t even remember Hazzard. I was saying Hazzard was a wonderful experience.”

“For me, it will always be there.”

“Cara doesn’t let her visit because she thought Hazzard was nonsense.”

“Nonsense?”

“Yeah like your dad was making it up.”

“Oh Dad wouldn’t do that.”

“I know that and so do you. Anyway, Daisy loves to make her Mom upset. She even got a B just to spite her but it backfired. Daisy just wanted attention. Instead, her Mom phoned and said she wasn’t coming.”

“Well, she ain’t here but then again in Hazzard, you never know if she’ll turn up.”

“Jesse, if you find her, settle her down before you call Cara.”

“Yes sir, I already was thinking that.”

“You are the best.”

“Stay safe Jose and watch out for those boys for me.”

“I sure will. You do the same with Bo and Luke.”

“Talk to you soon.”

“Bye now.” Jesse hung up the phone and sighed. Now the plot thickens. I bet you’re wondering what’s goanna happen huh?

4

Bo and Luke were following Enos in one of Dodger’s cars. “I still don’t see why we’re following him,” Bo grumbled.

“He’s been going in the woods everyday for the past two weeks now I wanna know what’s going on,” Luke answered. He turned left. Bo couldn’t understand his cousin. He always seemed to be in other people’s business.

“Why?”

“Every time I ask him where he’s going, with a twinkle in his eye he always answers me with, ‘No where special’.” Bo sighed and laughed.

“So?”

“Oh come on Bo, you know Enos’ whole face lights up when he is excited. My goodness, he’s really excited!” Bo shook his head.

“I still think you’re crazy, Luke. Why can’t we leave him alone?”

“You never know with him that’s why.” Luke turned again. He looked in his mirrors to make sure no one was following him. Well that and to make sure he was safe. “Enos could never keep a secret.”

“Yeah, I know that Luke Duke. I also know that Enos can be pretty predictable. That doesn’t mean we should chase him all the way around town.”

“There you go Bo, you agree with me.”

“You only listened to the first half.”

“I knew you would see it my way.”

“I give up with you.”

“As you should.” They drove for a short while in silence. Now with Bo Duke that never lasts. He was trying to think of things that it could be. He finally seemed to get one.

“Maybe it’s a woman.” Luke shook his head.

“With you Bo, everything’s a woman.”

“Well you think of another reason.”

“I don’t really know. But what I do know is that Uncle Jesse always tells us to go with our gut feelings and this one I ain’t goanna avoid.” Bo shrugged.

“I guess I can’t change your mind.” Bo and Luke parked the car far from Enos. They followed him into the woods. “Hey, he’s going to our tree house.”

“I told you he was up to something.” They continued to follow him. They watched from below as he carried food up the tree house.

“This is weird.”

“Yeah, tell me about it.”

“Enos never has done anything like this before.” Bo and Luke waited for a while…about a half an hour to be exact—if y’all wanted to know just how long Enos’ lunch break was. Soon, Enos was on his way down. He went back into his police car and back to work. Now that Enos is pretty slick.

Bo and Luke climbed up the tree house. Daisy gasped as she saw them. “So, is this your new residence or do plan on selling?” Bo asked. Daisy shifted her eyes. “Do you have any idea how many people are worried about you?”

“Not my mother,” Daisy replied.

“Sure she is.”

“Go phone her, she’s at work. Some worrier.”

“She took two days off.”

“No skin off of her back.”

“Police are looking everywhere for you.”

“Bo, you don’t get it do you? The only reason why I know you is Uncle Jose.”

“Oh that doesn’t matter.”

“The only THINGS I know about you guys is your names and ages because Mom told me not to talk about Hazzard. I never get to do anything with my Uncle Jesse. She takes everything away from me.”

“Daisy, that doesn’t mean you run away from your problems,” Luke cut in. Daisy sighed.

“Look, I don’t want to see her right now.”

“Well you can’t stay here. Look at your hair. You haven’t showered in…”

“A week? Yeah I know, I don’t like it at all. I feel like such a pig.” Daisy sighed she looked at her two cousins. “Well, I guess everyone has to get caught sooner or later.”

“That’s the spirit, let’s go.” Bo climbed down the tree first followed by Daisy and then Luke.

“Alright Luke but you owe me one.”

“How can I owe you one, I just met you. Come on, I brought the car.” They walked over to the General Lee.

“This is an old car you boys have got here.”

“Old doesn’t take away from it’s spirit,” Bo retorted.

“A car doesn’t have a spirit.”

“I beg to differ, young lady.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well if a car is built with love, some of that love goes into it.” Daisy shrugged.

“I guess I’ll have to take your word for it.”

“He’s right,” Luke cut in. Young Daisy, not knowing anything about Hazzard, had no idea about the welded doors. She pulled and pulled but couldn’t get in. Bo and Luke were laughing.

“What’s so funny?” She pulled on the doors some more. Bo and Luke laughed harder and harder. Daisy shook her head. “Did you boys to this to make me look foolish?”

“Why would we do that?” Bo asked.

“You’re the genius master minds, not me.”

“First off Daisy, we didn’t even know you were in the woods.”

“Well then Bo, how did you find me here?”

“Simple, we followed Enos.”

“I still say this is a conspiracy…you boys had to have opened the doors to get here.” Bo and Luke began laughing again. Daisy rolled her eyes. She sighed. “I don’t get you two, what is so funny and why can’t I open this door and why do you keep making me look foolish?”

“If anyone did it to make you look foolish it’s your Grandfather. These doors have been welded since before Luke senior went to Vietnam,” Luke announced.

“So how do you get in?”

“Climb in the window my dear—it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out.”

“Are you kidding me, Luke?”

“Just takes a few seconds.” Daisy crocked an eyebrow in incomprehension. “What is it?”

“Why would you weld doors shut?”

“It’s a racing car, it is supposed to have the doors welded. Now, do you need me to help you in?” Bo asked.

“No Bo, I can do it.” Daisy swung her legs over and got into the car. She moved into the back seat. Something was under her legs. “What is this large black case?”

“Our Bows and Arrows…equipped with our dynamite.” Daisy was really confused now.

“Dumb question but I’ll ask it anyway, why do you need Bows and Arrows—with your dynamite?”

“We’re on probation.” Luke started the engine and they were on their way.

“Probation…that means you can’t have guns and such?”

“Yep, that’s right.”

“How did you two get probation?”

“Daisy, if you’re goanna stay with us, you’re goanna have to talk like us.”

“Alright, how did Y’ALL get your probation?”

“Much better—we transported illegal whisky and got caught.”

“So I am riding with criminals?”

“Oh Daisy, we’s as harmless as flies,” Luke commented.

“Who break the law.”

“Ahh, look honey, we wanted to live on our own.” Luke cleared his throat as he made the turn. “Grandpa’s stories gave us the only idea we could come up with.”

“It doesn’t look like you were successful.”

“Actually, after we got caught, Uncle Jesse gave us a choice whether we wanted to move somewhere else,” Bo mumbled.

“And you wanted to stay here?”

“Just stay a couple of weeks Daisy and you’ll understand.” Daisy smiled. Suddenly, Luke heard the sirens. Daisy was once again confounded.

“We were only going 55, what does he want?” Bo and Luke began laughing again. “Oh come on, this is getting old. Let’s pull over.”

“You have got to be kidding me.”

“She is kidding you,” Luke answered his cousin.

“Look, the only time you pull over from these law men is if something’s wrong with your head.”

“Or your engine for that matter.”

“So you two run from the law? Man, this place is crooked,” Daisy growled. She pushed her long wavy brown hair back. Bo shook his head.

“Daisy, the only reason why we run from them is because these law men are crooked,” Bo told her.

“Seriously?”

“Anyone that works for the likes of Boss Hogg is a crooked person.” Luke began swaying back and forth. As he saw the dip in the road, his eyebrows went up.

“Hold on y’all,” Luke commented.

“What are you goanna do?” Daisy asked.

“We’re goanna have some fun.” Luke put the pedal to the floor. The General took to the air. Daisy began screaming. She looked down at the ground as they flew through the air. As they hit the ground, Daisy began breathing hard. “Fun huh?”

“I have never seen a car fly.” They watched as Roscoe tried to take the jump. He flipped over. “Is he okay?” Roscoe got out, waving his fist.

“Ah, he’s just fine.” A smile rolled across Daisy’s face, which seemed to get bigger with every second. “Are you okay?” Now it was her turn to laugh.

“You know, that was the most amazing feeling in the world. To think you boys do that every day. I want to go to this farm and meet Uncle Jesse.”

“Sure, your wish is my command.”

“Thanks Luke.”

“You are very welcome.”

“And I thought this summer was goanna be dull,” Bo mumbled.

“In Hazzard County?”

“Good point Luke.”

“Hazzard County has never been dull.”

“I don’t see why we wanted to leave in the first place.”

“I guess it sort of grows on ya.”

“Y’all are a riot. Why didn’t my Mom let me see you? Who knows but I know one thing, if everyday in Hazzard is like this then I want to stay,” Daisy added.

“Who knows, maybe you can. Maybe your mother will let you.”

“I don’t think so, Bo.”

“Why not?”

“My Mom thinks that Hazzard is full of nonsense.”

“Well then, we’ll just have to go and change her mind.”

“Good luck doing that. My mom is so stubborn.”

“Leave it to me, I’ll fix everything.”

“Yeah, I would love to see that Bo.” Daisy smiled.

“You haven’t seen him at work. He’s talked his way out of detention,” Luke announced.

“How much has he gone to detention?”

“Almost everyday, Bo’s the detention champ.”

“Any reason for being there or is the school system crooked too?” Luke began to laugh softly to himself.

“Nah, I’m there because they think wasting my after school times might help me stay awake in class,” Bo replied.

“You are one interesting person.”

“Yeah, if you think this is interesting, you should hear him when he sleeps,” Luke mumbled.

“You’re not funny Luke,” Bo grumbles.

“Sure I am. You said it yourself last week.” Bo shook his head but couldn’t help but smile.

“Okay, maybe you’re funny sometimes but not all the time.”

“You think?”

“Think? No cousin I…”

“You’re right you don’t think.”

“Why I outta…”

“Oh come on Bo, be a good sport,” Daisy said. Luke shook his head softly. He bit on his bottom lip trying not to laugh. Daisy wasn’t about to hold it in. After all she thought it was funny. Daisy laughed as the Dukes sped away towards the farm.

5

Now as the boys got the farm, they didn’t find Uncle Jesse at all. Isn’t it Funny how you think that you’re about to get in trouble when the person isn’t even there? That’s Bo and Luke’s luck for ya. They seemed to be having a lot of it lately.

Anyway, they would not accept that Uncle Jesse was gone—even though the truck wasn’t there. His hat was gone. His famous checker board was gone. When Uncle Jesse’s checker board is gone, you know he’s not home. Yep, the man even took his toothbrush.

“I guess he ain’t here. I don’t understand that man. Whenever we think he’s home he’s not,” Bo mumbled.

“Where could have he gone?” Luke asked.

“He could be kidnapped by Boss to get us to stop doing things.”

“Bo, don’t be so dramatic.”

“Dramatic? I ain’t being dramatic.”

“You know that Boss Hogg and Uncle Jesse were friends for a while after he came back.”

“Yeah well then Boss Roscoe died and he took over the empire.”

“You’re nuts.”

“No you are.”

“Take that back!”

“Now why should I go and do that?”

“Because I am anything but nuts.”

“You think so huh?”

“I think you’re insane.”

“Be quiet!”

“How about you?”

“Ah boys,” Daisy commented, holding up a piece of paper.

“What’s that?”

“Read it and find out.”

“I guess we should huh?”

“Duh!”

“Okay, we get it Daisy now give me the paper.” Daisy held it up. “Come on, this ain’t funny.”

“No more fighting?”

“Promise.” Daisy gave Luke the paper.

It was a note:

Hey Boys,

Great Uncle Luke is sick, I have gone to help your Great Auntie Maria out. Luke is pretty sick and he’s really important to this family. That’s why I am going. I know you boys understand.

Remember how important family is to me. Helping them out is one thing you should always do. If you find your lost cousin, help her out.

I made you a couple of frozen dinners. I should be back in a week. Don’t eat them all for a midnight snack. I don’t make meals for that purpose.

Bo, behave yourself…I know how good you are at getting in trouble and talking your way out of it. Please be good though. I don’t want to come home and find you in jail.

Luke, don’t get into too much trouble either. You’re a good kid with a bad luck streak. Luke, you are in charge but Bo can make most of his own decisions.

I have Miss Tizdale coming to look in on you in three days.

I love you both,

Uncle Jesse

“Looks like you just missed him. This means…” Bo began.

“This means that we have to call your mother,” Luke cut in, quickly, knowing what his cousin was going to say. Bo shook his head. Luke usually always followed reason and Bo, most of the time, would always followed his heart.

“Awe, come on Luke.”

“No way, you want us to keep her in the house?”

“Uncle Jesse ain’t goanna know she’s here.”

“What if he comes back early?”

“Well then he’ll tell Aunt Cara.”

“He won’t be too thrilled that we did the wrong thing.”

“Uncle Jesse said to help family and she’s family is she not?”

“Yes she is but…”

“There you go, we should help her. If Daisy wants to stay here she should stay, shouldn’t ya darlin’?” Daisy shook her head as she smiled. She nodded her head yes.

“Bo, Daisy ain’t a puppy…we ain’t allowed to keep her.”

“And DAISY wants to stay here…so, why don’t you leave it that way until Jesse gets home?” Daisy questioned. Bo began to laugh.

“Daisy, you know that we could get in a lot of trouble.”

“Well, I’ll take the blame for it.”

“Alright Daisy but…”

“Relax.” Bo shook his head and laughed. They walked into the farm house.

“This is our place. I know, it isn’t like any of the places in Chicago. I love it because it ain’t like California either. That’s what really made me want to stay out here.”

Daisy couldn’t believe the look of the kitchen. It was something right out of an old movie to her. She looked at the frilly curtains hanging in the window. The stove sat there with doilies on the towels. Daisy shook her head as the smile rolled across her face.

She walked into the living room. The furniture had massive Afghans draped over each one ever so carefully. They were filled with all the colors of the rainbow. Daisy felt the soft yarn. She knew right away it was cotton. Bo and Luke couldn’t understand how one person could be so amazed with the look of a house.

She walked into one of the spare bedrooms. The curtains were long and pink. “This was Catherine’s room. Before that, it was Daisy’s—ah Daisy senior,” Bo commented.

“Yeah—Grandpa’s first room was destroyed by him. The staircase is where it used to be. He used to share with Luke. Uncle Jesse said that it is good to have a roommate. Being alone is boring,” Luke added.

Daisy smiled. She touched the quilts on the bed. The furniture was beautifully hand crafted. You could see the love that was put into each work of art that was in this room. Daisy loved each piece that had been done. One was a flower scene with a young girl dipping her hair into the water.

Instantly, Daisy saw herself in that picture. She touched the bottom, mirroring the letters of the person who drew it, “Johnny Duke”. This house was filled with so much joy and love and Daisy was enjoying every second of it.

Daisy walked out of the room. The boys followed her upstairs. She opened the door to Bo and Luke’s room. They had posters of cars with women on them. Trees that they had climbed were posted on the bulletin board.

Also on the wall in there was a picture of Bo, Luke, Coy and Vance in it. One was with Vance and Luke entered in the same soap box race. Luke beat his brother just barely. They both were really good drivers. The picture of Bo and Coy was one where they entered in a go-kart race. Bo beat Coy. Pretty funny how that works huh?

The pictures she enjoyed the most were the ones with Bo, Coy, Vance, Luke, Uncle Jesse and her Auntie Jessie. They looked like a great little family. Everyone seemed so happy, so excited. The boys didn’t seem to have a care in the world.

Daisy longer for these memories the boys had. She thought about going out with her nanny…it just wasn’t the same. Daisy’s mother was the one person she wanted to do everything with. All she wanted was a chance—Daisy wanted the world.

The boys stared at her, wondering what was on her mind. Daisy finally clued into their suspicions and headed for the bathroom upstairs. Bo and Luke went up into the attic that Bo senior had added on to the house. They pulled out a trunk of clothes marked, “Catherine”. They pulled out an outfit.

Bo and Luke walked down the steep ladder and pushed it back up. As Bo hung the clothes on the door handle, Luke walked down the stairs. He grabbed Daisy’s suitcase and began putting them in piles by the washing machine.

You know what’s funny about the Dukes? Traditions—the traditions to still hang clothes on the line. Uncle Jesse said the clothes don’t smell as good unless they’re on the line. So yes, he bought a washing machine but not a dryer.

As Daisy finished her shower, she walked out in the clothes that were given to her. She went into Catherine’s old room and found the blow dryer sitting in the right hand drawer. She pulled it out with care, plugging it in. Daisy looked into the mirror. She put her head upside down and began letting the breeze flow through her hair.

As she did this, Daisy closed her eyes. She imagined her mother holding her close. Playing with her on a sandy beach, Daisy would smile and look upon the white clouds. The sea gulls were rolling through the atmosphere swimming on the blue platted sky.

Suddenly, the clouds changed. The rain began rolling down like water on a glass. People scampered away—all but Daisy who seemed to hear the rhythm of the rain. She danced in it softly, smiling with every drop. A smile rolling across her flushed rosy cheeks.

Daisy’s dream soon ended and she was back in Catherine’s old room. She sighed softly. “If only that were true,” Daisy said to herself.

“If only what were true?” Bo asked as he was passing by. Daisy pulled herself up. Her wild brown country like hair made its way into its normal place. Bo smiled. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to interrupt.”

“No, I am glad you’re here.” Bo sat on the edge of Catherine’s old bed. Daisy did the same thing. “What was your Mother like or can you remember?” Bo smiled.

“Ah, you can never forget something like that. My mother worked a lot but she was around for me. Every day she would come home from work tired and yawning but, she would always tuck Coy and I in.”

“Were you ever upset with her?”

“Oh heck no—she told the best stories and she was so kind. Every night she would talk about how each of us was special. When we went to the playground, I remember looking at my parents holding hands. It was so remarkable.”

“What was your father like?”

“Oh my Dad?” Bo began to laugh, he shook his head softly. Daisy smiled weakly not knowing what her cousin was thinking.

“Of course, I want to know about your Dad.”

“You sure have a lot of questions today don’t you?”

“Yeah, I guess.”

“Well my Dad was a tall mechanic who ran his business inside his home. He also wrote poetry on the side…not that he would tell anyone about that one. He got a book published once.”

“He worked too?”

“Yeah well…we worked with him. He took care of us during the day. Our dad hired help so he could go out whenever he needed with us. Farley was one amazing guy. Dad was the most amazing person out there. He took us to all sorts of things.”

“Like what?”

“Well, Coy and I were both in archery…I did better at it than he did. The teacher said I was a natural.”

“What else?”

“Well…karate and ballet.”

“Wow, you must be a talented dancer then?”

“Oh yeah…don’t tell Luke that.” Daisy started laughing. She took her finger and pretended to lock her lips up. She threw away the key. “I’m so glad you’re here.”

“Me too.”

“I hope you don’t have to leave.” Daisy laughed again. She shook her head.

“You know, every second of the day you find another way to make me laugh.”

“It’s the way it should be isn’t it?”

“I guess so.”

“So here’s the deal…I’ll make you laugh every day you’re here and that way you have great memories.”

“That’s a deal.” They gave each other a big hug, sealing the deal.

“I’ll always protect you too Daisy, nothing will ever happen ot you.”

“Thanks Bo.”

“You’re welcome.” Now friends, I think the boys like her a lot don’t you? I can’t wait to see what happens next. Should be a fun day tomorrow.

6

Okay, Daisy and the boys were having a great time in town. They loved walking around with her asking all sorts of questions. Daisy was an open book which was lucky for her because Bo and Luke didn’t like secrets.

She wanted them to know everything and in return, she wanted to know everything about them. Bo and Luke didn’t mind that. They weren’t the biggest braggers in the world but they both loved to talk about themselves.

What did they find out about Daisy? Well, Miss Daisy had top marks in school. She was good in every subject except math. Luke said if she stayed he would help her. Daisy wouldn’t mind having the help.

Daisy is a gymnast. She loved doing back flips. She worked hard on her routines. The coach told her that she could go to the nationals. When her Mom didn’t show up to any of the regional competition dates, Daisy quit the team but still kept up with it.

She also took numerous kickboxing classes. Daisy loved her kickboxing. She was great at it. No one could beat her in her weight class. This young lady was proud of the record. Her teacher said she could whoop anyone…Luke didn’t doubt that one for a second.

The one thing Daisy didn’t know how to do was to work with the Bows and Arrows. Luke and Bo were both shocked. “Well Miss Daisy, we’re just goanna have to go home and teach you,” Luke mumbled.

“Okay, that would be fun,” Daisy expressed. As they went back towards the General Lee, the Ramsay Boys and their gang bumped into them. Bo and Luke shook their heads. Bo and Luke gave the boys the evil eye. “Who are these gentlemen?” Daisy whispered softly.

“These are far from gentlemen, these guys are what got us suspended from school,” Bo whispered back. Daisy sighed.

“Oh boy.”

“Stop keeping secrets from us Duke, you owe us an education. Our Pa is angry at us for getting kicked out of yet another school,” Buford commented.

“Well sorry moron, I think that you would know better by now. You want education? You treat people nice and no one will get kicked out of school,” Bo growled loudly.

“I am sick and tired of you Bo Duke. Now, here’s the ultimate deal, we beat out the difference of moving and you take it like a man,” Billy hissed.

“Oh you think so? I think that we’ll have to think about this one,” Luke said, cutting off Bo. Luke knew as well as anyone how bad his cousin’s temper was. “Duke huddle y’all.”

“Make it quick Dukes.” Daisy and Bo both huddled with Luke.

“Cousin, controlling your mouth might have been a good idea but since you can’t seem to do that, I guess we’re goanna have to fight. You know, this is goanna be hard considering there are just two of us,” Luke mumbled.

“Uh there are three of us. Three against six are pretty good odds,” Daisy spoke softly.

“Are you sure?”

“Sure, I have never been surer of anything in my life. I am a Duke and no matter what I will stick with you boys.” Bo smiled. He couldn’t believe how fast Daisy had turned around. All she wanted to do was be a part of Hazzard County.

“Alright.” They turned around and smiled, walking up to the Ramsay brothers and the rest of their little gang. Bo smiled as they all punched someone. Daisy was doing very good for herself. Within minutes two men had already been punched out.

Luke was working with one and Bo was caught between two and being hit by one. Daisy stood there for a second watching Bo flail with his legs. “Are you goanna do anything yet?” Daisy asked.

“Yep,” Bo replied. He jumped up and kicked both of the guys who were holding onto him. Daisy took on the guy who was previously kicking her cousin. Luke finally got Buford down on the ground. “Luke, you’re cheap.”

“Why?” Luke asked.

“You gave us all the dirty work.”

“Well that’s because I am a person who gives out the jobs and makes sure they’re done.” Daisy and Bo looked at each other.

“You have got to be kidding me.”

“Nope, I know what y’all should do and when you should do it. You know, the brains of the operation are me.” Daisy and Bo shook their head. They noticed the fountain that had been put in Hazzard Park a year ago. Their eyebrows went up. “What?” Bo and Daisy charged at Luke. They grabbed him. “LET ME GO!” Bo hoisted him up. Daisy had the legs and Bo had his upper body.

“Here we go.” They walked across the street hurriedly. Daisy and Bo threw Luke in the water.

“Now who is the brain in the family?” Daisy asked.

“You mean brains?”

“Of course Bo, I do mean brains.”

“Okay, y’all win, you’re the brains. Now can you help me up?” Luke asked. As Daisy and Bo went to help their cousin, Luke pulled them in the water too.

“That was dirty pool.”

“Nah, it was justice, Daisy.”

“Yeah right, Luke. Justice would have been you slipping a second time.” Bo began to laugh.”

“That ain’t funny.”

“Oh Bo knows that it is.”

“Yep,” Bo replied.

“You are awesome cousin.” Bo and Daisy high fived each other. They all got out of the fountain and walked over to the garage. Enos was there getting his car fixed. As he saw Daisy, everything seemed to stop.

“Hiya Daisy—I mean…hello Miss Daisy how…uh fancy seeing you here in town,” Enos commented. Daisy began laughing. She smiled at Enos, doing her light wave.

“Don’t be so nervous Enos, I’m just a girl.”

“You’re all wet Daisy.”

“Hey y’all, what brings you to my garage?” Dodger interrupted.

“You mean my garage, look at the sign little brother. It doesn’t say Dodger’s garage it says Cooter’s garage,” Cooter retorted.

“Why I outta…”

“You outta what?”

“Never mind Cooter.”

“So what are y’all doing here anyway?”

“Well we were wondering about…” Luke began.

“Towels? Go for it. They’re up in the apartment over the garage.”

“Thanks Cooter, you’re the best.” Luke walked up the stairs and grabbed three towels. He threw one to Daisy. Enos caught it and wrapped it around her.

“Y’all don’t live up there do ya?” Bo asked. Staring at Enos and Daisy as they talked—uh huh, he was a bit protective of Daisy. Even if Enos was one of his best friends, Bo didn’t like it when he talked to Daisy.

“Heck no, we live at a farm together,” Dodger replied.

“Farm life is good.”

“Of course it is.” Daisy gave Enos a hug just before he went back across the street.

“Bo, you were staring at me the whole time,” Daisy growled.

“Sorry—I just don’t know if Enos is the best man for you,” Bo replied.

“Who said he was becoming my man?”

“You leaned.”

“Leaned?”

“Yeah, when you put your arms around him and squeezed him.”

“Uh, Bo that was called a hug—you are paranoid.”

“No, a hug is something you give to your Grandpa or Grandma. You my dear were leaning.” Daisy crocked an eye brow. She shook her head.

“Look, I was not leaning.”

“Do you know what that is?”

“No.”

“Hugging involves both arms. Leaning involves eye contact and passion. Leaning in for the kill, that’s what you were doing.” Daisy rolled her eyes. She slapped her cousin in the back of the head. “Owe.” Cooter began laughing. He looked at Enos’ car, Luke was already under the hood. Cooter shrugged.

“I’m still the one who gets paid,” Cooter announced.

“That’s fine.” Luke pulled out a line. “Does that look like it was torn normally to you?” Dodger grabbed it out of Luke’s hand. He examined it and then passed it to Cooter.

“No—who would want to kill Enos though?”

“I don’t know but I reckon I’m goanna have to find out.”

“You, last time you wanted to go on a Duke like adventure, didn’t y’all get caught?” Dodger asked.

“We’re Dukes, Dodger. Besides, even my Granddaddy and my Great Uncle got caught a few times.”

“Not like y’all though.”

“Hey, can we focus on Enos here.” Luke paced back and forth for a minute.

“What is he doing Bo?” Bo looked away from Daisy.

“Huh?” Bo responded.

“Nice retort…try again. Why is Luke pacing like that?” Bo smiled, finally clueing in.

“Well he’ll do that for a couple of minutes—then he’ll snap his fingers and say, ‘I’ve got it, let’s go Bo. Then I’ll end up in trouble.” Luke snapped his fingers as if on command.

“I’ve got it…let’s go Bo,” Luke announced. Dodger began laughing.

“Go where?”

“We need to ask your lady friends for a favor.”

“Oooh, I like the sound of this already.”

“I’m coming with y’all,” Daisy proclaimed.

“Can we help?” Cooter asked.

“Don’t worry, all of ya are goanna be in this one,” Luke replied. A big smile went across everyone’s face.

“I do like a first-class escapade. YEEEEEEE HAW! Dang, this will be fun.”

“Now bro, you ain’t thinking of doing something crazy are ya?” Dodger asked.

“Come on little Dodger, I am CRAAAAZY COOTER. I am supposed to do crazy things. If I didn’t I wouldn’t be…”

“Crazy, I know.”

“So get into the spirit.” Cooter looked at Luke smiling. “You know what we could do Lukas? We could drive through the sheriff’s office on a motorcycle and…”

“I was thinking of something more on the lines of where we didn’t get caught and thrown in jail,” Luke replied.

“Come on Lukas Duke, you only live once.”

“That may be true but I don’t want to do all of my living behind a jail cell. Now, I am goanna stick with my plan.”

“Which is…?”

“Come on, if I give away all of my secrets it wouldn’t be as fun would it now.” Daisy climbed into the General. Bo followed her, sitting in the passenger’s side.

“Oh Luke, can’t you give me a sign?”

“Not until I ask Bo. Are you ready cousin?”

“Oh yeah,” Bo replied. Luke slid over the hood. “Hey, I liked that Luke and, I am goanna do that when I get to drive.” Luke started up the engine and revved it for a couple of seconds. Soon, the Dukes were speeding off. Now you see y’all, this is about to turn into an adventure.

7

Over in New York City, Bo walked into Luke and Maria’s house. “Where is he?” Bo asked Maria, with a worried look on his face. She smiled.

“Nice to see you in New York, Bo—don’t worry about your cousin he’s…” She began.

“Fine?! Don’t you say that to me, its pneumonia! That’s dangerous for people his age.”

“Bo, you’re no spring chicken yourself.” Bo shook his head as tears rolled down his face. “Hey, calm down. Jesse’s with him. Luke’s just fine.” Bo shook his head no.

“I knew I shouldn’t have moved so far away from Luke—I knew it. I just knew it. Something was bound to happen. Why did I leave?”

“Bo! It wasn’t like you could have done anything.”

“Why didn’t anyone tell me?”

“Luke made me promise.”

“Yet he told Jesse?”

“Oh Bo, don’t be such a child. You know as well as I do your cousin loves you. Luke didn’t want you to worry that’s all there is to it.”

“Well Luke doesn’t know what’s good for him. If he did, Luke would never have let it get this bad.”

“Oh Bo, you know how much pride your cousin has. Doctors aren’t exactly his best friend.”

“Yeah I do.” Bo shook his head. He walked up the stairs and opened the door to Luke’s room. Jesse was sitting beside Luke, just staring at his father. “Why would you keep this from me?”

“Hi Dad,” Jesse mumbled.

“Hi son.” Bo directed his view back at Luke. “How could you do this? Here I was sitting at home and you didn’t tell me. I was sitting in my nice cozy chair thinking how wonderful that everyone was well and you didn’t tell me.” Luke began coughing. Jesse handed him a drink.

“Look how you’re acting…still as childish as always,” Luke replied. He sighed softly. “Bo, you know as well as I do that I am fine.”

“No I don’t it’s pneumonia. You’re not young anymore—78 years old doesn’t mean to speed up it means to slow down.”

“Look whose talking? Think about it Bo, you’re running how many companies and here you are lecturing me to slow down. You’re an old fart too.” Jesse began laughing. He shook his head.

“You two sound like my Bo and Luke. Now, I want you two to accept some things. Luke, no more letting your pride get the best of you. You will go to the doctors like a normal person does.”

“Jesse I don’t need some…” Luke began.

“I know I was told to respect my elders but be quiet.”

“Sorry.”

“Thank you…now, pride not to be in an old folks home is one thing but putting yourself in a dangerous situation is another. Dad is right about that.”

“Thank you son,” Bo said, smugly.

“Dad, I wasn’t finished.”

“Sorry Jesse.”

“Now, I may have said you were right about the doctor thing but you have got to think about slowing down yourself.”

“Me I’m…”

“Retiring is not a crime. You don’t have to drop out of a plane to come and visit me. You don’t need to drive a helicopter upside down either.”

“HA!” Luke cut in.

“Last of all…shake and make up.”

“Jesse, ain’t that a little bit ridiculous?”

“Luke, Bo made Jose and I do it. I don’t think you two are too young. Besides, your Uncle Jesse would have made you do it. NOW SHAKE!”

“I’m sorry Bo, I shouldn’t have called you childish. I am also sorry for not telling you that I was sick. That was pretty low.” Luke put out his hand. “Can we end this?” Bo smiled.

“I’m sorry Luke for calling you old—even if you are,” Bo answered. Jesse shook his head. He couldn’t believe Luke was laughing though. Bo started with him. Luke suddenly began coughing again. Jesse handed his second cousin the cup of water once again.

“Sorry about that.”

“We seem to say sorry a lot.”

“I’ll leave you two to catch up,” Jesse mumbled. He walked out of the room. Bo sighed and sat down in the oak chair that Jesse had vacated. He crossed his leg, leaving a triangle like gap.

“Can you believe that just happened?” Bo laughed.

“Your son was trying to control us right?” Luke questioned. Bo smiled. He couldn’t believe what had just happened either. Jesse seemed so much smarter than both of them. “Well, he’s a good kid.”

“A good adult.”

“Made to be an Uncle Jesse that one…I am so proud of him.” They sighed as they remembered their own Uncle. Luke sighed. He missed his dear Uncle so much. Every wrinkle—every white hair was planted in his memory.

“You know, I miss him too.” Bo sighed softly to himself. “We are getting old ain’t we?” Luke nodded slowly.

“Think about it Bo, even Roscoe’s gone.”

“Boss Hogg…”

“Half our friends are in a nursing home.”

“Or retirement home.”

“Here we are still kicking.”

“Far from our roots. Luke, why didn’t you want to come back to Hazzard? I mean…why New York?” Luke shrugged.

“I don’t know…I guess it just didn’t feel like home once he was gone.” Bo’s head lowered. “What’s wrong?”

“Hazzard was the best time of our lives and yet…”

“We both left it. You know, I kept thinking the same thing. I wanted to stay but…”

“You just didn’t?”

“Yeah…I guess. Why did you really leave Hazzard?” Bo shrugged.

“I suppose to give Jesse the chance that I had. You know, I could have put my foot down with Nancy-Lou and said we’re staying. The only reason she wanted to go up there in the first place was…”

“Because of Daisy and her Mom? I know that. She missed them.”

“The place where I felt the best was Hazzard. I guess I kind of had to hand it off to the next Generation. Maybe—maybe I didn’t think it was fair that I was there and he…”

“He wasn’t? Bo, it’s not your fault he died.”

“I wish I could have stopped it.” He stood up and moved to the wall, trying to avoid crying. “He didn’t get to this age and I did. I feel like I am wasting my time…time he would have used better.” Luke smiled.

“Bo, if he were here, do you know what he would say to you?”

“No Luke, because he’s not.”

“Well I know…he would tell you, ‘Now Bo, you have grown up the way I wanted you to. You kept my memory going.’ It’s funny, when I was in trouble, I would phone you and you would listen to me for hours about my kids.”

“So?”

“So, that’s what Uncle Jesse wanted. Your boys had kids. Two of them are living with an Uncle Jesse who is as giving as the first one was.”

“We have our names on their heads as well.”

“Enjoy it.” Bo and Luke smiled.

“I love you Luke.”

“I love you too Bo.” They hugged each other. Luke finally released his cousin from his grip. He stared at every wrinkle Bo had on him. Luke then peered down at his own hands. “We’re old.”

“Only on the shell, Luke…only on the shell we’re old.”

“You think so?” Bo nodded softly. He scratched his chin and pushed his gray and white hair back.

“I think that we’re only as young as we think we are.”

“Which makes you about sixteen, right?” Bo began to laugh. He shook his head.

“I said youthful not moody.”

“Okay, maybe sixteen is a bit off.” Bo laughed. Luke shook his head in fun. “There’s one thing I’ll ask of you, Bo. Don’t ever change cousin.”

“Right back at you Luke, I don’t want you to change either.”

“Friends forever…”

“Forever’s not enough.” Bo shook his head, smiling at his cousin.

“Bo?”

“Yeah Luke?”

“I don’t know how to say it but…”

“Well just up and say it.”

“It’s nice to have you here.”

“Thanks for letting me be here.”

“You’re welcome Bo.” Luke looked confused. “How did you find out anyway?”

“Daisy can’t keep a secret from me.” Luke began to laugh once again. They hugged a second time, both men with smiles on their faces. “She never will be able to keep a secret.”

“I guess not.”

“Oh well, I guess it was good she told me about you. She was worried too. I think she feels better now that I am here.”

“She would wouldn’t she?” Bo and Luke stopped the hug and looked at each other.

“But of course Daisy would feel better about me being with you. After all, I was the brains of the family.”

“You wish.”

“Nah, I know.” Now ain’t that a great sight? I have to say Bo and Luke always have been close…I hope it stays that way. I wonder how long Jesse’s goanna stay now that his daddy’s here.

8

Alright, we’re back in Hazzard again. Oh come on, don’t lose sleep over old Lukas over in New York, he’s a Duke ain’t he? Luke has been through all sorts of stuff. He has gone through negotiations with criminals for goodness sakes. Luke is a fighter. He has been all of his life. He also has a good head on his shoulders.

Besides, Bo and Jesse are there with him. What better luck than to have a father son duo? They are a good team when they’re together. So guess what y’all? All is well and then some. With the way Bo and Jesse cook, Luke will get better in no time. Not to mention all the country remedies.

Besides, some action is about to happen here with Bo and Luke Junior that you do not wanna miss. Trust me, I know these things. Luke comes up with some interesting plans today. You’ll just have to wait and see. This one takes the cake. Oh, I am getting ahead of myself. I guess I had better explain what I mean before I ruin it for you.

Now Bo and Luke had to do something to keep their good friend Enos occupied—well, Enos and Roscoe. Now I bet you’re wondering how to keep the law busy. Well in any other place it might be quite the job but you haven’t been to Hazzard that often have you?

You see, if they didn’t keep Enos busy, the plan would never work. Roscoe was always suspicious therefore they had to keep him out of their hair. Now friends, this was goanna be a task. Keeping two people busy was a lot of work.

Luke had to enlist a group of people into this plan. Cooter for one who would be the diversion for Roscoe—well Daisy would help with that one too. Mr. Dodger Davenport to make all of it come through, just the way Luke wanted that is. I suppose you want to see what’s happening well, we’ll start at Enos’ house.

As Enos stretched, all he could think about was another fun day at work. Police work was in his blood. He loved the chase. Enos would be into it all the time. Lately, the young deputy was afraid of many things. He was so sure that another fun car accident was ahead of him.

Now you remember, Bo and Luke had to keep him occupied. So when Enos didn’t have his usual PJ’s on, he was a little bit nervous. I would be too if I were in poor Enos’ condition. Mmm, mmm, mmm, those boys did a number on him. Well Enos really did want to go to work today. He wanted to get out of bed but he was only in his britches.

Now you remember all those gals that Luke was talking about before? You know what I am talking about don’t you? The gals that Bo knew so very well? Yeah, at first I wondered what that Luke was thinking. I thought of his one track mind with women…I was wrong. Luke did have a plan for all of them. A great one at that.

Well sir, they were all sitting in Enos’ room. The women were thoughtfully given to him by the one and only Bo Duke. You could just imagine waking up to a room full of girls.

Uh huh, they were all those slinky gals from high school. Bo was so loved by all the ladies that he even dated the older ones which Luke thought was funny. All of these gals had their hair done up very nice with pretty painted nails. Some had earrings and others had none.

You should see all the girls. My goodness, Enos had never seen so many. There were red heads, blondes, brunettes and jet black haired gals. There were tall ones, short ones and even medium sized ones. There were cheerleaders, spirit readers and bird feeders. There were chess players, grass sprayers and people who worked with fashion layers.

I bet you’re wondering what Luke’s angle is for this one. If anyone knows anything about Enos Strait it is that he is a gentleman. He would rather never walk through a door ever if it meant he couldn’t hold it open for a lady. He tried to pull on the blankets to wrap them around him but couldn’t quite get it. That was Bo’s trick. Super gluing the blanket to the bed was an old ploy he used in LA on his brother Coy.

“Ah ladies, I am goanna be late for work now. Do y’all mind going out so I can find some clothes to wear?” Enos began. Lila, Bo’s latest craze, opened Enos’ closet and picked up his clothes. She put them into a suitcase.

“Sorry Enos, but this is for your own good,” Lila mumbled. She opened the window and threw his clothes out on the lawn.

“Now that ain’t funny, y’all great gals will you go and grab my clothes?” They all shook their heads waving to Enos, blowing him kisses. Now how would he get out of this one? “Please ladies…can’t you give me some clothes?”

“Oh come on Enos, we like you,” One of the other girls said. Enos went red in the face.

“Now I like y’all too but I would like you more if you got me my clothes.”

“Awe, we see.”

Meanwhile, on the lower floor, Bo was putting the final additions on his newly accustomed deputy sheriff uniform. “Luke, I still say this is stupid. If Roscoe catches us…” Bo began.

“What do you think Daisy and Cooter are for? Think about it BO…” Luke started.

“I am thinking about it cousin. We could have our probation revoked and we could be sent right back to jail. Impersonating an officer of the law…holding a gun.”

“WOE, who said anything about holding a gun?”

“Well they ain’t exactly goanna believe I am a police officer without a gun.” Luke reached into his back pocket and grabbed a gun. Bo jumped. “How could you do this to me? Do you think that we’ll get away with…?”

“HOLD IT BO!” Luke squirted Bo with the gun…all that came out was water. Bo laughed. “Now don’t you think I would have thought of that? I wouldn’t break our probation for anyone alive.”

“Good thinking but how do we get away with the whole impersonating thing?” Luke smiled.

“You leave that to me, cousin.” Bo rolled his eyes. “What is the matter now?”

“Every time I leave it to you, something happens.” Luke smiled. He patted his cousin on the back.

“I guess you have to trust me.”

“Trust you? You were the one that wanted to run the moonshine.”

“Are you always goanna hold that over my head?” Bo shrugged and smiled. “Look, that was a long time ago…I am a little bit smarter than I was before.”

“So you won’t be getting us caught?”

“I so hope not.”

“What if we do?” Luke shrugged.

“I don’t know, we’ll wing it I guess, Bo.”

“You’re nuts.” Bo began laughing. He shook his head delicately. Bo’s curly hair seemed to move almost in slow motion. “You know, I think you’re lightening up though. A few more years and you’ll be just about right.”

9

Back over in town, about an hour later, Roscoe was coming into work. It was time for Dodger’s end of the deal. Now you had better watch this because I am only goanna show this once. After that, if you get lost folks, you’re on your own.

“HEY ROSCOE,” Dodger called. Roscoe jumped in shock like he always did. He walked over to Dodger.

“Wooo Jit…I should be arresting you for disturbing a police officer.” Dodger shook his head.

“Look, I just thought you would want to know that two strange people are getting in General Lee.” Roscoe looked at two bandit like people, climbing into the General just like Dodger said.

“WOOO, I should stop them.”

“You do that law man.” Roscoe’s eyebrows rose. He looked at his target getting into his car. A smile rolled across his face. “Go get them Roscoe,” Dodger laughed as Roscoe turned on his sirens, speeding after them. He picked up his CB radio laughing all the way. “Hello this is the bullet dodger calling Miss Bo peep, are you in honey?”

“Yes sir Bullet Dodger this is the Bo peep, what’s up on over at the landing one come back?” Daisy asked.

“Glad you asked Bo Peep. The Healthy Hound is chasing the foxy fox come back.”

“So the trap has been laid. 10-4 out.”

“I’m gone.”

“This is Bo Peep calling her lost sheep…come back.”

“Leave them alone and they’ll come home wagging their tails behind them. This here is lost sheep number two Miss Bo Peep what to do you need honey?” Bo questioned back, over Enos’ radio.

“Just wondering if operation girl got underway.”

“10-4 to that one cousin, handled and done.”

“We’re goanna have to make this up to him you know.”

“Daisy, he’s surrounded by women.”

“Good point Bo, catch you on the flip flop.”

“10-4 Bo Peep, over and out.” That gal had some good training for CB talk huh? Now there was one flaw in Luke’s plan. First off, he was originally going to play Enos. Luke may be good at football but he ain’t anything like the size of ol’ Enos.

Bo on the other hand was a little taller than Luke after the growing spurt he had. That’s why he was the one in Luke’s clothes. Now what’s the flaw you’re wondering? Simple, if you recall, Bo can’t drive.

Remember, the boys break their probation and they’re in jail. So, who was going to drive? Luke…but you’re thinking that will look suspicious. Not when Luke is driving by Bo’s feet. Now ain’t those boys smart? As they began to drive, Bo noticed someone following him.

“Is that the person who is looking to kill Enos?” Bo asked his cousin. Luke turned his periscope.

“I don’t know, signal left and I’ll turn the steering wheel,” Luke answered. Bo did as his cousin said. Luke made a left hand turn. “Turn it off?”

“Not yet.” Luke made another one. The car stayed behind him.

“Well?”

“Yeah they’re following. Maybe if we slow down they’ll come after us.” There was a rock in the road, with it a big bump. Luke hit his head hard and was knocked unconscious.

“Luke?” There was no answer. Bo put his hands on the wheel as Luke’s slid off. “LUKE! Wake up, I don’t know how to drive anything but a tractor.” Bo began to breathe hard. “Okay Bo, don’t panic…a tractor is a lot like a car.”

Bo began to swerve back and forth a little but after a few minutes, the newest Duke driver had full control of the car. He couldn’t believe he was doing it. Bo had always longer to drive but never really had the chance.

He smiled weakly wondering if Luke would wake up…especially when bullets started flying. Now can you imagine driving normally now envision your first time in an automobile with ammunition soaring through your back window. Now friends, I think I would be a little worried—wouldn’t you?

“Alright, don’t panic Bo, keep your head down and drive,” Bo said to himself. Bo heard some moaning. “Luke? Are you okay?”

“What happened?” Luke asked.

“You bumped your head pretty good there. Look, do you wanna drive? I don’t think this is too legal. Well considering I am almost fifteen.” Luke shook his head a couple of times. “Well, are you goanna take over or what?”

“Bo, I didn’t know there were two of you. You have a twin driving beside you.” Bo crocked an eyebrow.

“Okay, no driving for you.” Bo put his foot down on the accelerator and he was off. He began swerving back and forth.

“Do you mind not going so fast? Everything’s spinning.” Another bullet flung through the air.

“I don’t think you understand…today is goanna be the day that we’re goanna get shot if we don’t move.” There was a dip in the road. “Oh my gosh…I can’t slow down fast enough. Luke, hold onto something.”

“Oh boy, we’re in trouble.” Luke sat up in the car, putting on his seatbelt just before Bo made history.

The police car went up in the air, flying. It hit the ground successfully. “That wasn’t so bad now was it?” Bo questioned. Luke was starting to snap out of it.

“Yeah, just peachy.”

“Don’t worry; we’ll go to the doctor in a minute.” As the other car tried the same thing, it too flew up into a tree. Bo got out of the car and went to face his fears. He pointed his water pistol at the man. “Come down little by little, no surprises.”

“Don’t shoot him Bo.” Bo kept a serious face as the man did as he said. The young Duke boy didn’t want to laugh. Remember, he was carrying a water pistol…not a real gun.

“Keep coming.” The masked man continued to climb down the tree slowly. He finally made his way to the bottom. “Put your hands on the tree.” Bo pulled off the handcuffs off his belt—well I do mean Enos’ belt but Enos ain’t here is he now?

“You’re not the deputy. You’re impersonating a deputy of the law. That’s a crime you know,” A deep familiar voice commented. Bo looked befuddled by the man’s statement. Not only by his words but the voice behind them. Bo pulled off the man’s mask. An older man with silver streaked hair stood before him. His eyes were cold like ice.

“Deputy Montanez?”

“Ex-Deputy to you…I had been working in this profession before Roscoe was born.”

“Why did you do it though?”

“Bo, you don’t understand. I was the best in my job. For a while there, Jesse Duke didn’t have to deal with the baddies. Why? I was amazing. Did they promote me? Of course not.”

“Why not?”

“Boss Hogg decided that the one and only Roscoe would allow him more business. When I protested, I was replaced by Enos! An eighteen year old boy!”

“That’s no reason to kill him.” Montanez sighed and looked away from Bo. “Look, this was wrong on all accounts.”

“Yeah, and now I’m goanna suffer.”

“I’m afraid so…we all have to go through our punishments.”

“Well, I was caught by a worthy adversary. Bo Duke, you were amazing…did you drive all by yourself?”

“Well up until the big bump.”

“Great job rex.” Bo couldn’t believe how well they were getting along.

“Thanks.”

“You’re welcome. I would have you on my police force anytime…well if I was in the police force.” Whelp, ain’t you glad they’re friends? It would have been much harder if they weren’t.

Oh…we had better catch up with the General Lee, over near Willow creek. The driver of the car was amazing, pushing the General to its limits. One minute Roscoe was behind them. Another minute, poor Roscoe was in front and the General was chasing.

For a minute there, the driver was driving on one side of the car. The two side tires up in the air. This driver was insane…he even backed into a trailer of a moving vehicle…thanks to the help of bandit number two who was in the front seat.

As the two in the General Lee were driving, they heard something through the CB radio. “This is lost sheep two calling Crazy Cooter…come in,” Bo said over the CB. The driver put the passenger’s hands on the wheel for a second. “Crazy Cooter would you please come in.” The driver took his mask off. Sure enough it was Cooter Davenport.

“Breaker one Breaker one…I might be crazy but I sure ain’t dumb, crazy Cooter comin’ at ya. I got my ears on and I’m listening strong what can I do for ya Lost Sheep two come back?” Cooter replied over the CB.

“Cooter, I have got the mad bomber and I’m taking him to town. I am almost there. Roscoe can be let out of the chicken coop. Repeat, Roscoe can be let out of the chicken coop.” Cooter smiled.

“That’s a big ten four…over and out I’m gone.” Cooter put down his CB. “You can take the mask off now Criminal number two.” The passenger nodded, slowly peeling off the mask. Yep, if you haven’t guessed already, that’s Daisy with the long brown hair. She began laughing.

“Cooter, I love Hazzard County,” Daisy announced.

“Glad you think so miss flower because it’s time for your lines.” Cooter stepped on the breaks hard. Roscoe went into the ditch and smashed up his front end.

“Woo-jit-jit, you dang people are under arrest. Yep, I’m the law,” Roscoe commented as he tripped. “Oooo—that smarts. Now listen here crooks…” Roscoe stopped as he saw Cooter in the car. He looked over at Daisy. “Who is she?”

“Roscoe! I was driving Miss Daisy DUKE around Hazzard and then you come along and begin chasing us. That’s not fair!”

“Woo-jit-jit…no way now, that’s unpossible.”

“You mean impossible.”

“Whatever. Because A, there is no Daisy Duke in Hazzard County.”

“Why Sheriff, I heard all about you sugar,” Daisy put in.

“Mmm…you have to leave Hazzard…Boss will kill me if there’s another Duke.” Daisy pulled out her lipstick, applying it slowly. She rubbed her lips together and puckered.

“Well I am sorry to disappoint but this is Duke property…the General I mean. You don’t get to arrest anybody.”

“Awe well Judas priest on a pony…my Daddy taught me that Khee-hee-hee.” Roscoe straightened up. “Well I’ll be on my way then.” Roscoe looked at the steam coming from his car. “Ah, will you Dukes give me a ride?”

“Sorry, but you don’t want me in Hazzard remember?”

“What…I was just kidding.”

“Oh please, I know better than that.”

“Daisy…”

“Hit it Cooter!”

“As you wish your malady,” Cooter said in his best British voice. He sped off leaving Roscoe waving his fist…that and hitch hiking.

“I’ll get you Dukes for this!” Roscoe exclaimed. He sighed and swallowed hard. “Hopefully before Boss Hogg gets me.”

10

A week passed and everything seemed quiet in Hazzard County. The boys and Daisy finished all the chores that needed to be done. Dinner was simmering on the stove and Uncle Jesse walked in the house. Okay, I said SEEMED quiet not WAS quiet.

You do remember that Daisy has been a runaway for a while now. A month. Now police were sending out flyers to every police department in the country. So naturally, when Uncle Jesse saw Daisy, there was goanna be fireworks.

Daisy walked out of the bathroom and back into the kitchen. As she saw Jesse sitting at the kitchen table, Daisy ran out of the room and upstairs. “Bo, is that you?” Uncle Jesse questioned.

She walked into Bo and Luke’s room. Bo was sitting on his bed surrounded by car magazines. Luke on the other hand was reading a book. Both looked up from what they were doing.

“What’s wrong, you have the look of terror on your face,” Luke expressed.

“Uncle Jesse’s home,” Daisy replied. Both boys stood up and looked at Daisy.

“Luke, I am not loosing my cousin. She’s too much fun,” Bo cut in fast.

“Bo, you know as well as I do that she can’t stay here forever. I know she likes it but…” Luke tried to say. Bo wouldn’t have it.

“Daisy’s our kin!”

“Would you boys stop talking about me like I ain’t here? Look, I wanna stay here as much as you want me to. Luke’s right though…Jesse’s got to know,” Daisy said, maturely.

“Daisy, I don’t want you to leave.”

“Bo, I know you don’t but it ain’t up to you.” Daisy sighed softly. She pushed back the tears, hoping not to make Bo any more upset than he already was. “But you know what? This was the best time of my life.”

“We love you.”

“I know.” There was a knock at the door. Daisy opened it. Sure enough, it was Uncle Jesse. His eyes went wider than hub caps. “Look, it wasn’t their fault I…”

“Do you know how worried I was—how worried Jose was?” Daisy bit on her bottom lip.

“How would you know?”

“Yeah I know that I don’t know you very well. However, with the amount your Uncle talks about you, I do know you.” Daisy smiled softly. “Don’t go smiling yet young lady. I’m not done.” Daisy wiped the smile off her face.

“Sorry.”

“Daisy Duke, I thought you knew better than to run away.” The tears finally came out. Jesse’s shoulders lowered. “I’m sorry sweet heart.”

“No, it’s not you.” Daisy sighed softly to herself. She sniffled a bit. Jesse grabbed a hanky out of his pocket and handed it to Daisy.

“Hasn’t been used.” Daisy began to laugh. “Oh kid, you know that I would love you here. I love Bo and Luke but a young woman would be a great addition.”

“However…”

“However, it’s not up to me.”

“I know.”

“I’ll call your mother.”

“You’ll need her work number.”

“If my kids were missing, I wouldn’t be at work I’d…”

“Well you can’t think of her as you, Uncle Jesse. You have to think of Cara Duke. Mom would be at work right now.” Daisy grabbed a piece of paper and a pen from Bo’s nightstand. She wrote the number on the piece of paper passed it to her uncle.

“I’ll try the home phone first.”

“Don’t say I didn’t warn you.” Jesse nodded softly.

“Look for the good.”

“I have tried.”

“You have got to try a little bit harder than Daisy.”

“Seriously, I know she’s there. Mom is always working she never takes a day off. The only time she takes time off of work is when she personally is sick. Even then Mom’s barking orders on the phone.”

“Yeah, I’m goanna phone her now.”

“Okay, see you in a few minutes.” Jesse walked down the stairs and grabbed the portable phone.

“She’s a parent how could she not be home?” Yep Uncle Jesse had a lot of trust in people. “I would be there in a heart beat looking with the cops. Especially if it was my own kid…or even Bo and Luke. Well, I guess any family member; yeah I would do it for anyone.”

He dialed the number he had in his home phone book for Cara. As Daisy had predicted, she was not home. He shook his head and dialed the next number. “Hello, Smiley Teeth, your teeth are our business. This Deborah speaking, can I help you today?” Deborah asked.

“Yes hello ma’am, I am looking to talk to Dr. Cara Duke please,” Jesse replied.

“One moment please.”

“Okay, thanks.” Jesse was put on hold listening to the usual elevator music. He walked around the downstairs amazed at how clean it was. Jesse walked over to the pot and opened it. A cloud of steam spilled out from the large metal object.

Jesse couldn’t believe how amazing the aroma was. He took out a small metal spoon and dipped it in. He blew on it for a second and stuck the small sample in his mouth. Jesse pressed his lips together and nodded his head with satisfaction.

“Hello, this is Dr. Duke speaking, I am here for your needs—how may I help you?” Cara asked.

“Well we’ll start with a cleaning and work our way up,” Jesse grumbled.

“Jesse, how did you get this number?”

“You know, if I were in your shoes I would be searching for my daughter instead of searching in people’s mouths.”

“Well you’re not me Jesse.”

“No I guess not.”

“Did you call me to lecture me big brother because I don’t have time for this. Besides, our beast for an older sister already took that role.”

“Don’t talk about Jo that way. Do you have no respect for your family at all?”

“Love Cameron to death…you two are part of the nonsense of Hazzard.”

“Well maybe if you triplets would have stayed in Hazzard you would have turned out better. You’re a workaholic…that’s all you seem to care about.”

“I miss my daughter if that’s what you mean…I do care.”

“Look, this is about your daughter, she made her way to Hazzard County. You can call off the police.”

“Great, send her up on a plane. I will have someone to pick her up.” Jesse shook his head. “It’s settled then so…”

“Don’t you hang up that phone, missy.”

“Excuse me?”

“If you want your daughter, you come down and get her.” Jesse heard some typing. “Did you hear me?”

“Yeah I heard you…looks like you get her for a couple of weeks. I can’t take time off work right now.”

“Are you kidding me?”

“If you’re sick of her shove on a plane or a bus…whatever you yokels like to do.”

“I ain’t sick of her…I would have thought you would have cared enough to come yourself. Remember Cara, success outside the home doesn’t account for lack of success in the home.”

“Jesse, I don’t need your lectures. I will talk to you in a couple of weeks.” Cara hung up the phone. Jesse pushed the button and shook his head. Daisy walked down the stairs along with the boys.

“Don’t whine boys, she’s staying for a couple more weeks.” Bo and Luke smiled. “I can’t believe that woman!”

“Yeah, tell me about it,” Daisy replied.

“How is Great Uncle Luke?” Bo asked.

“Oh your Grandpa came over and is helping now. Luke wanted me to go home and take care of y’all. He said y’all were probably getting into trouble. I said in Hazzard? Nah…they’re Dukes,” Jesse replied. Bo and Luke began to laugh.

“We can handle ourselves pretty good,” Luke added.

“What happened while I was gone?”

“Oh the usual…someone was after Enos. Ah, Ramsey Gang tried to beat the stuffing out of us,” Bo replied. Uncle Jesse shook his head and smiled.

“You won didn’t you?”

“No thanks to Luke, he tried to supervise,” Daisy laughed.

“Well not the whole time. I took a fella on,” Luke replied.

“A FELLA is the word. One dude compared to Bo and my share. Ain’t that right Bo?”

“Oh yeah, we beat the stuffing outa them bad guys.”

“It was great.” Daisy smiled, winking at her uncle. “Nothing better than a little Hazzard fun.”

“Bo also had his first driving lesson,” Luke cut in.

“That’s right, how was that?”

“Uh…not too bad. Flew for my first time,” Bo answered.

“You ain’t supposed to be drivin’ anything Bo Duke,” Uncle Jesse grumbled.

“Hey, if I didn’t the car would have crashed. Then we would have been arrested for destruction of County property.”

“You were driving a police car?”

“The only way to catch a bad guy.”

“What’d you do with it?” Bo and Luke looked at each other and began to laugh. Uncle Jesse didn’t get it. “Come on boys, what did you do?”

“Well, we gave it back to Enos at his place.” Bo began laughing harder. “After I changed out of uniform, I went up and saved him from the gals in his room.”

“Girls?”

“Yeah, Luke’s idea,” Daisy quickly added.

“I see.”

“Whelp, Enos was so glad for a pair of clothes he didn’t care that the car was there,” Luke answered. Bo tried to control his amusement but it kept coming out. In fact it was so bad that Luke started laughing once again.

“How’d you boys get back?”

“Dodger was there to give us a ride.”

“Then he had to go and pick up Roscoe,” Daisy began to laugh.

“You left him out in the dust.”

“Of course I did Bo.”

“Sounds like y’all had a great time together. I guess you have some Duke blood in you after all,” Uncle Jesse cut in.

“Great ain’t the right word Uncle Jesse. Over here has been breathtaking. I wish I could have come here more often. Speeding in the General. Who needs a plane when you got the General Lee?”

“Your cousins were nice I hope.”

“Bo and Luke have been a riot. I laugh everyday here with Bo. Luke taught me how to take apart an engine with a blind fold on.”

“He learned it from his cousin, Tom.”

“Bo taught me everything you need to know about fixing a car and then some.” Jesse smiled. He loved seeing these kids all together. It was like something out of a dream. “You know, Luke and Bo even went horseback riding with me.”

“You want to go with me tonight?”

“Really?”

“Yeah…all of you kids.”

“Sure,” They all said at the same time.

“It’s settled then.”

11

Bo and Luke senior were sitting on the front porch looking up at the night sky. Luke was wrapped up in lots of blankets. “Can’t see half as many stars as Hazzard,” Luke mumbles. He leaned back on the chair. Bo shook his head.

“Nope, you can’t,” Bo replied. Maria came out on the front step looking at the two men. She had three cups on a tray.

“I thought you boys would be thirsty,” Maria mumbled. She handed the cups out.

“Thanks Maria—from both of us.”

“You are both welcome.” Maria sat down by Bo on the front step. “You know, New York is nothing like Mexico.”

“You think?”

“Oh I know.” She laughed. “I guess that’s why Luke and I understand each other so much.”

“You miss Mexico.”

“He misses Hazzard, don’t you honey?” Luke nodded softly.

“Of course he misses it. He misses showing off.” Luke rolled his eyes. He shook his head. “Come on Luke, you know I’m right.”

“Everyone misses where they used to live.”

“Even me.”

“Of course you.”

“Sometimes I wonder what it would be like if I stayed.”

“Don’t have any regrets Bo. You cannot live a good life without a clean conscience.” Bo sighed, he knew Maria was right about this one.

“That’s true. I just wonder if…”

“You know Bo, Hazzard will be special to you for the rest of your life. No matter where you go or what you do it will be in your heart.”

“Well I know that.”

“You have roots there.”

“I met Nancy-Lou there for the first time. You know, memories like those make it special.”

“Yeah, just like Mexico is to me. I remember when I first saw Luke.”

“Oh? Was he at his best?” Luke went red in the face. “Oh come on Luke, I love these kind of stories. Especially when they’re about you.” Maria laughed. “So tell me, did he look good?”

“Not really…he had tripped and fell in the mud after it rained. He had it all over. I thought it was funny. He said to me, ‘Estoy tan apesadumbrado. No signifiqué hacer a un tonto de mí delante de usted, señora hermosa.’ This roughly means…he was sorry he made a fool out of himself in front of me…such a beautiful lady.”

“That’s the Duke charm for you.”

“Tell me about it.”

“I love you Maria…I don’t regret meeting you,” Luke mumbled.

“Oh Luke…Usted es hermoso para un Americano.”

“Su brillo de los ojos como las estrellas esmeralda. ”

“Sí y yo le amará para la vida y toda la eternidad. ”

“Hey come on y’all, speak in English,” Bo laughed. He shook his head. Bo sighed longing for his own wife.

“Bo, look,” Luke said. Out in the distance stood Nancy-Lou. Bo ran to her almost instinctively. He embraced her in his arms, holding her tight.

“Why did you come?”

“Luke said you missed me. Besides, I couldn’t be away from you for one more second,” Nancy-Lou answered. Bo began to cry, holding his wife tight.

“Oh Nancy-Lou…I love you.”

“And I you.”

“Not half as much as I love you. Honey, you do everything for me. I adore you for it.”

“You’re too kind.”

“Never leave me again.”

“Well I got to leave some time.” Nancy-Lou began to laugh. She shook her head in amusement.

“No, I mean next time you go, take me with you.” Bo nodded.

“You have yourself a deal.”

“I love you.”

“Didn’t we already say that?”

“Well then plug your ears babe because I will say it anytime I want.”

“I love you.”

“No I love you.” They began to kiss. Maria moved closer to her husband and held him tight.

12

Back in Hazzard, two weeks were almost up for the Dukes. Bo looked at his new school clothes and shook his head. “Why do I have to wear these again?” Bo asked. He looked at the blue jeans and the tan shirt that was buttoned up just perfectly. There was a tie and everything.

“Why do I have to wear this?” Luke questioned. He had the same type of thing on only with a plaid shirt. His tie was plain black. “Simple, every year school pictures look stupid.”

“So we’re going as someone else? Luke, this ain’t us. We’re going back in two days and we look like…”

“Like dorks?” Daisy asked. The boys jumped. “Relax, I listened for Bo twisting to look at himself in the mirror. I hear it every morning before I usually knock.” Luke giggled to himself.

“Not funny Luke.”

“Sure it is Bo. Now, you boys need work. I know.” Daisy pulled the ties off. She undid two of Luke’s buttons and all of Bo’s…he had another shirt on y’all. “Now that’s the Bo and Luke I am used to.”

“What did you want?”

“I wanted to read Great Great Uncle Jesse’s journal…the fourteenth one.”

“Fourteenth edition, huh? Well it is on the corner shelf. Just remember to return it like the last one.”

“No problem.” Daisy grabbed his fifth journal and held it tight in her arms.

“Daisy you would think you were holding a treasure chest,” Luke commented.

“To me it is. To think Hazzard has always been this way.” Bo and Luke smiled. “Well, I am off to read it up in the loft. Don’t let me stay up there too long. I wanna help our Uncle Jesse with dinner.”

“No problem Daisy girl.” She ran down to the stairs and slid on the railing. She began running more as she got down.

“None of that, Daisy,” Uncle Jesse scolded.

“Yes sir,” Daisy replied. She began to walk like a young lady.

“Now there’s the young woman I have come to love.” Daisy began laughing.

“I am not all that lady like am I?”

“You can be cured of that one.”

“I guess so.”

“Are you goanna help me with dinner tonight? Your cooking skills are remarkable.”

“Yes sir, I would love to.”

“Good, I’ll get your oven mitts ready.” Daisy looked confused by her uncle’s statement. “Well come on, you don’t think you can cook without your own do you?” Jesse pulled a package out from behind the wood stove, which he kept in the house.

“What’s this?” The box was white, wrapped in gold paper with a blue ribbon on it.

“A gift just for you.”

“Uncle Jesse, you didn’t have to do this for me.”

“Why sure I did. Now, you hand me the journal while you open the gift.” Daisy passed her Uncle Jesse the book hesitantly. She didn’t think it was necessary for someone to pick her up a gift. “Well come on now.”

“Okay, here I go.” Daisy tried to preserve the paper, unfolding it carefully.

“Daisy, a present is meant to be ripped open. Now I understand keeping the bow but not the paper. Come on, you can do it.” Daisy’s eyebrows went up. She took off the bow like Uncle Jesse suggested. When it came to the paper, it was mutilated. As she opened the box, she saw a beautiful pair of over mitts with D’s on the front.

“Oh Uncle Jesse!” Tears rolled down her face. She wiped them away quickly. “Did you make this yourself?” Jesse nodded softly.

“I wanted you to know how much this time with you has meant to me.” Daisy smiled. She gave him a big hug. “I hope you know how much I care.”

“Uncle Jesse, I adore you more than anyone else. The horseback riding, the cooking lessons.”

“You taught me some things too.”

“I never knew how to knit before I met you and now I am a professional it seems like. You’re so wonderful.” Daisy finally released him from the hug. Jesse wiped the tears from his eyes. “What’s wrong?”

“You remind me so much of Laurel—my wife.”

“In what way?”

“Her spirit. You know, you’re as free as a bird inside. You light up a room whenever you are there. Daisy, you’re special…don’t let anyone else tell you different.”

“Thank you.”

“You’re welcome.” Jesse handed her the journal. “Now you run along and enjoy your reading.” Daisy nodded. She kissed her uncle’s cheek. She ran out the door.

Daisy carefully climbed up the ladder to the loft of the barn. She loved to read there. Daisy always seemed to embrace the scenes with the farm sounds behind her. Especially with this one:

I haven’t written in a while. Things have been busy. My love life seems to turn me in circles I never thought I would have to go. Livonia, she seems to accept everything that is going on in my life. I promised her I would marry when all the kids had gone. However, she told me that being without me was too hard.

We had a quiet ceremony. Only select people were to be there with us. Jeff made the shine for the wedding which was very amazing of him. Seeing as he’s busy with school and all.

She wore all lace as she walked towards me. Her eyes seemed to light up as she spoke those sacred words. My heart has never pounded so deeply as when we got married. I thought now our troubles were over. Then a couple of years went by very quickly. We both went through sicknesses and losses. They never seemed to end for us. I don’t know why God gave us these trials but we are willing to go through them together.

David came back today with his wife. He told me that he had lost his job. To make things worse, Marie is pregnant. I feel for him, my dear brother David.

A while back we gave up a son because of my wife’s health at the time. We were sure that we were going to die. At the time, it was the only way to keep him from getting what we had. When both my wife and myself became better, she wept over the fact that she no longer had a son because of her fear.

So to know Marie was pregnant, really helped me make a decision. I knew that I had to help my brother…it was the lord’s way.

Now he and his wife are living under our roof. At first, I was convinced my cherished Livonia would be upset as we were still in our beginnings and were working to make it as it was. Instead, she embraced Marie with open arms.

Now I have two women in the kitchen. My brother helps me in the fields. I am blessed beyond believe. Now I have both brothers close to me. My little nephew, Luke, comes over quite frequently. I adore spending time with him.

Well, that’s all for now signed,

Jesse Vernon Duke

Daisy read on in the journal, finding many entries that intrigued her. One though really stood out in her mind. She couldn’t believe this entry. She felt for her Uncle in so many ways. All the things that happened, all the pain he had. And as she cried, Daisy read it again:

I can’t believe it! I just can’t. I play it back over and over in my mind—still; somehow it turns out the same. Why did this have to happen?

They went up to the mountains trying to cheer David up only to loose him. He was pronounced dead on Bo’s birthday. How can you explain to a one year old that his father is dead? I don’t think I can do this. I can’t raise this kid. He reminds me too much of his father. Yet at the same time, he’s so defenseless.

The will is clear, he’s mine. I will love him like he was my own…like the son I lost. Bo will never feel like he’s second best. This is my promise to him.

Jake isn’t taking it very well. Not only did he loose his brother but he lost his wife as well. Luke tries to cheer his Dad up but can’t seem to do so.

Anyway, I have got to cook.

Jesse Vernon Duke

Daisy read further on in the journal:

Sorry, I haven’t written for a while again. I have been busy with a lot of legal stuff. You know what I mean lawyers from the big city and social workers. I have seen so many lawyers I think I have them down to a science.

Still, I keep thinking how could any father do this to their son? Jake didn’t give me any notice at all. He walked outside, Luke screaming to him. Bo was crying because Luke was. Those two seem to have a bond that can’t be broken.

Today, I applied for custody of Luke. Now hopefully they’ll both be mine. It has been three months since Jake did this. With this court order, Luke will stay mine until Jake shows that he is worthy of him. Or if Jake doesn’t show up at all, Luke and Bo can be like brothers always.

You know, it’s funny how things work. Livonia is fine with this whole mess. She seems to hold the boys together. Still, I think that she has regrets about marrying me. I don’t know, maybe I am being silly.

Jesse Duke.

Suddenly, Daisy heard a car come to a stop. She looked out of the opening in the barn. A slender blonde walked out, staring at the house. She pulled off her driving gloves. Daisy stared at her face, her mother’s face. “No, not today,” Daisy mumbled. She didn’t want to come home yet.

13

Cara walked right into the house, not wasting any time. She wanted to leave Hazzard County immediately. Daisy had been exposed enough to this life. Cara wasn’t going to risk anymore of it. She was sure it was already ruining Daisy’s life. “Where is my daughter?” Cara questioned. Jesse shook his head softly. “Come on Jesse, I’m not playing games.”

“You have quite the nerve Cara. No hello just give me my kid,” Jesse responded. He sighed turning from her almost instantly. Cara shook her head, radiating with anger.

“You don’t understand…”

“No Cara, I do—I am very aware of what’s going on around me.” Jesse sighed. He knew very well that he had to teach his little sister a little bit. “Do you know how many people would jump at the chance to have your little girl?”

“Jesse, I don’t have time for your little lectures on life. I am a parent and I am qualified for this.”

“Oh really?”

“YES REALLY! I can take care of my own daughter. I don’t need you to meddle. Now, I need to get back because unlike you who can choose to sit around all day I do not have time.”

“Your little girl ran away, you have all the time in the world. Don’t tell me you do not have time.” Cara rolled her eyes. “She loves it here. Daisy loves the attention she gets. She loves the adventure that comes with being here.”

“Get to the point.”

“Do you love her?”

“Of course I do? Why do you think I work all those hours? I do it for her.”

“Maybe in the beginning.”

“What is that supposed to mean?”

“Your second cousin Luke worked hard at his job. He still had time for his boys.” Cara shook her head. “Don’t do that to me. Listen instead.”

“Fine.”

“You come home most of the time to dinner on the table.”

“Yes.”

“When did you notice she was gone?”

“I got home and there was no dinner. I assumed she was still mad at me so I went to bed. The next morning I woke up and there was no breakfast. I looked in her room and her back pack was gone. I was sure she left early to avoid me.”

“Right after you left for work that morning, she went to the bus station. It took her two hours from where she was to get there. She waited in line for hours to get the tickets only to find she was short.”

“I’m supposed to know everything? I am a single working mother.”

“Daisy was sick when she was two with a bad case of chicken pox. Where were you?”

“At work.”

“Where were you when she got her appendix out?”

“I was in doing emergency surgery.”

“Don’t you get it?”

“Look, all those times, she had someone with her. Daisy was never alone.”

“No, she was alone. When she was twelve…”

“She was legally old enough to stay by herself.”

“Because the nanny wasn’t there…” Cara sighed. “BECAUSE the nanny wasn’t there to cook for her, Daisy learned. Soon you expected dinner.”

“Well, I can’t cook.”

“Why not? Your father wanted to teach you. You see Cara, even though you have cut me out of your life, I have not cut you out of mine. Daisy is the same way. She asked about you.”

“Who did she ask?”

“Hygienists…she wanted to know her mother. She would call receptionists and talk on the phone. Do you know why?”

“No, I don’t.”

“To hear your voice. Soon, she knew that work would always be number one. She tried to get low marks so you would notice…leaving them right where you could see them.”

“Yeah…”

“When you told her she couldn’t go to the ONE place where EVERYONE paid attention to her, she ran away.” Cara shook her head.

“Jesse, I am not perfect but I am her mother.”

“You know, at one point you called me and talked. You wondered if you were doing the right thing. Cara, you called me. That’s when you still had an ounce of real love still in you for your daughter. Now I am giving you golden advice.”

“Oh and what’s that?”

“Leave her here. The boys love her and I love her.”

“HOW WOULD THAT LOOK? Me, a mother, getting rid of my daughter.” Jesse’s fists tightened. His face felt warm to him.

“You wouldn’t be getting rid of her.”

“Where did you stash my daughter?”

“She’s reading up in the loft.”

“Loft?”

“In the barn.”

“Gross.”

“It is not.”

“Great now I can go home. Daisy can forget all about this place.” Bo walked down the stairs. He looked at this woman carefully.

“So, you’re my Auntie Cara. You look different in person,” Bo commented.

“I DO NOT HAVE TIME TO CONVERSE WITH HILLBILLIES, out of my way!” Cara marched to the barn. Bo shook his head. He walked outside and leaned on the house. Daisy continued to read, as if she hadn’t seen her mother at all. Cara walked into the barn. “Daisy, time to go home with Mommy.”

“Why would I want to go home with you?” Daisy asked.

“He brainwashed you?”

“No one brainwashed me, mother. I wanted to be here.”

“Well you were and now it is time to go home.”

“Can I come back?”

“No.”

“Why not? I like it here.”

“Next year you can go to a nice summer school with girls your own age.” Daisy shook her head. Cara was loosing patience. She began climbing the ladder.

“I don’t want to go with you.”

“You don’t have much of a choice.” Daisy backed up instinctively. Bo saw her coming close to the ledge, even from where he was standing. He began to run as she slipped. Cara tried to grab onto her daughter.

“Don’t let go!” Cara tried to hold her but Daisy slipped from her fingers. Instead of waiting for the end result, Cara immediately turned towards the ladder. She climbed down, shaking the whole time. She saw Daisy lying on the flat of her back…on top of Bo.

“Are you okay?” Daisy was helped up by Luke who saw the whole thing.

“I’m fine…Bo, are you okay?”

“Ack…I think so,” Bo replied. As he tried to stand up, he felt pain and fell back down. Bo shook his head.

“Let me see.” Daisy pulled up his pant leg. She put her hand into his boot. “Not as much room in those as there was yesterday when I picked them out.”

“Swollen?” Luke asked.

“Oh yeah.”

“Yeah I can feel it too,” Bo grumbled.

“We got to get him to a doctor,” Luke commented.

“Doc Applebee?” Daisy questioned.

“Yep, you’re on the ball today cousin.” Daisy got down on the ground.

“Thanks.”

“Don’t mention it.”

“Ready Luke? One—two—three, up.” Daisy and Luke lifted their cousin up.

“You’re not going anywhere,” Cara cut in.

“My cousin is hurt. He comes first.” Daisy loaded Bo into the truck. She got into the back seat. Cara walked up to the truck.

“I am leaving tonight, with or without you.”

“Make it without me then.”

“You want to stay with him?”

“Yes I do.”

“FINE! I’ll sign you over to him. You can stay in Hazzard.”

“Really?”

“Yes. It is obvious you’d be better off without me. I’ll go into town in this thing and get it all settled.” Daisy smiled.

“You know, this is the first time you have done anything for me.” Cara began to cry. “I know, I’ll miss you too.” Luke closed the door.

Well friends, life is like a stage. Daisy happened to enter on the wrong side of the stage but soon she made her own play. She chose her destiny. By entering on the right side of the stage, Daisy was able to start again…to have a life. Now she would be happy.

THE END

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