by: Marty Chrisman
Roscoe patrolled the back roads around the Duke farm. He knew that Bo and Luke were hiding out somewhere and he was determined to find them. He knew about Luke’s alleged amnesia but he still needed to talk to the older Duke Cousin. The autopsy report on Angie Baker showed that she had indeed been raped by at least two different men. And a search of the General Lee had uncovered evidence that she had been raped at least once in the back seat of the car.
Roscoe had known Bo and Luke since they were children and even though they got into trouble now and then and liked to raise hell, Roscoe knew that Luke wasn’t capable of the kind of violence that had taken Angie Baker’s life. But he had been there so he had to know something. Roscoe felt certain that Luke could identify the real killers and that alone could put the entire Duke family at risk. He believed that the killers had intended to kill Luke too but had screwed up and hadn’t finished him off by hitting him in the head. So far, Roscoe had managed to keep it quiet about Luke’s connection to the murder and about the General Lee having been found at the scene. But his instincts told him that the real killers were out there somewhere and they were probably looking for Luke too so they could finish him off.
Roscoe might be involved with Boss in his crooked schemes to bilk folks out of their hard earned money but at one time he had been an honest lawman. And at times like this he tended to shift back into that role and remember what it meant to be a sworn officer of the law. Even though he worked with Boss to try and frame the Dukes and get them thrown into jail, he didn’t want to see Luke get hurt or killed. And he wouldn’t even think about trying to frame Luke for anything as serious as murder. That was a capital offense and carried the death penalty.
He wondered if he could convince Jesse that he was on their side this time so that he could talk to Luke. Somehow he doubted it. Being in Boss Hogg’s pocket meant not being trusted by most of the county. And he couldn’t really blame any of the Dukes for not trusting him after all the times he’d arrested Bo and Luke on trumped up charges or tried to frame them for something. But right now, Rosco had a job to do and he was going to do it and do it the right way.
He wanted to find the men who had so viciously killed that innocent child and see them put away before they could hurt anyone else. This was still his county and he was responsible for the people who lived here. He had Enos and Cletus looking for Bo and Luke too but he doubted if they would have any better luck at it then he was. Those boys knew the county like the back of their hand and they knew how to disappear into the hills and hollers so that they’d never be found unless they wanted to be.
Meanwhile, at their hidden campsite, the boys were starting to get a little bored with their forced confinement. Jesse had been there the night before with Daisy to bring them some more supplies and Jesse had taken the truck, so they were stuck without any wheels until Jesse or Daisy came back and got them. They had a portable CB to keep in touch in case of an emergency and if they needed to reach Daisy or Jesse, they were all on the alternate channel that they used when they wanted to talk privately with each other.
Jesse had finally told Luke about finding the General Lee at the scene of Angie Baker’s murder but Luke still couldn’t remember anything about what had happened to him that night. Bo had told Jesse about Luke’s dream and how the only thing Luke could remember about it was that it had something to do with a young girl in some kind of trouble. Jesse took that as an encouraging sign that Luke was trying to remember the events of that night, at least subconsciously.
As for Luke, even though he couldn’t remember anything, he seemed to be more relaxed and comfortable with Bo. That unique bond between them was still holding them together in spite of the present circumstances. They could talk and laugh again without feeling so awkward with each other, except when Luke had to ask Bo to clarify something he said because Luke couldn’t remember the inside joke between them that led to Bo saying it. Bo was just relieved to have that much of Luke back again. And Jesse knew that if anyone could help Luke remember it would be Bo. And the sooner the better. Jesse’s big toe had been hurting like crazy and that always meant trouble.
Bo and Luke had their bow and arrows with them so to pass time, they decided to go hunting. They walked through the woods using the skills they had learned from Uncle Jesse as children to track and to follow the trails. Before heading back to camp, they managed to shoot a couple of rabbits that they would fix that night for supper. As they sat around the campfire after eating, Bo noticed that Luke seemed preoccupied, lost in his own thoughts. Bo was used to Luke’s moods and periods of silence so he didn’t try to push him into talking. Luke had always been that way, only sharing his thoughts or feelings when he wanted to not because someone else wanted him to.
Bo had almost dozed off lying there on his back looking up at the stars so when Luke spoke, it startled him for a moment. “What?” Bo said with a sheepish smile, realizing that he hadn’t heard what Luke had said.
“I said I think I remember something….” Luke told him
“What?” Bo asked, instantly giving Luke all of his attention
“There was a girl in the road…..she flagged me down….”
“I don’t know….But I remember stopping to help her.”
“At least that’s a start.” Bo said encouragingly
Luke covered his face with his hands, holding his head as if it hurt. But the truth was he was trying to make sense of the images that suddenly started flashing through his mind. He hunched forward with his elbows on his knees and took several long slow breathes and then looked up at his cousin.
“They’ll be looking for me because they thought I was dead that’s why they left me there….” He said quietly
“Who?” Bo asked anxiously, staring at his cousin and not wanting to break the spell if he was actually starting to remember.
“I don’t know.” Luke said in a frustrated voice. He groaned and buried his head in his hands again “God, my head hurts….”
“Don’t try to force it.” Bo said “Why don’t you just try to get some rest? Maybe you’ll remember more in the morning.”
“Yeah….” Luke said “Maybe you’re right.” He stood up, swaying unsteadily on his feet for a moment. Concerned, Bo jumped to his feet and took his arm, gently leading him over to the tent and helping him inside. Once he was settled comfortably in his sleeping bag, Bo went back out by the fire, taking the portable CB with him.
Hitting the transmit button, he said “Lost sheep to Shepard. Lost Sheep to Shepard. You got your ears on Shepard?”
“This is Shepard. Go ahead, Bo.” Jesse’s voice said over the CB
“Yeah, Uncle Jesse….I think Luke’s starting to remember things. He said a girl flagged him down and he stopped to help her. He also said they thought he was dead so that’s why they left him there….”
“Does he remember who they are?”
“No, that’s one thing he doesn’t remember yet.”
“That’s a good start…..stay with him. Is he alright?”
“He’s lying down….he said his head hurt….” Bo told him
“Keep an eye on him and don’t try to force him to remember. We don’t want him doing himself more harm than good….” Jesse told him
“I’ll get hold of Enos and tell him what Luke said. Maybe it’ll help.”
“Okay, Shepard. This lost Sheep. I’m gone.”