(c)1997 Pete Ahrens
Burn down their Castle,
Drain their Moat,
Wind, Bike, Road,
Booze Fighters follow
Our own Code.
Francis Guadalcanal, 1947
Not since the mounted warrior nomads pounded new roads west from the grassy Caucasian steppe, riding out of the dawn, following the sun on its march to the sea…
Not since the weather weighted North Sea horizon was shattered by the terrifying masts of lusty Viking raiders…
Not since the fiery red marauders of the vast plains carried off the last butchered settler’s wife…
…has fear filled the ignoble hearts and banal minds of villagers as when, that brilliantly sunlit afternoon, at the fork where de Anza once dreamt of conquest, on the road whence Jesuits brought oppression, the path of dreadful glory, U.S. 101 in California , the roaring iron horsemen paused in their awesome progress to divine their own true direction.
Sublime anxiety perhaps has already made its way along the shady lanes and sleepy streets, for like the skirmishers of a voracious army, one or two machines have already shattered the holiday eve’s noon siesta in a mile-grinding reconnaissance for fuel and beer. But here and now, the decision which would bring terror to the husbandman and trepidation to the policman was conjured.
X. Johnny eased his powerful Indian Motocycle onto its sidestand and dismounted. A gentle breeze tugged at the oily silk hachiman which held his aviator’s goggles snug. For the ten thousandth time since his first violent pass over Henderson Field on Guadalcanal he shoved the goggles high on his forehead.
"Dig," he said.
From within his black leather jacket he drew the holy artifact which would inspire and guide him. X. Johnny brought his clenched fist to his nose, inhaling the fragrance of the silk stocking, still imbued with the stain and smell of an ecstatic night before the war. This was the Medicine Leg, an object of great magic and wisdom.
X. Johnny raised the Medicine Leg to the clear sky. The prevailing Northern California breeze carried the toe southeast.
"Yeah," X. Johnny gazed down the state road peeling away from the highway, into the boonies. "Frig‘em if they can’t take a joke."
The Medicine Leg returned to its home over his heart, X. Johnny righted his Indian, gunned it a couple of times and blasted off. His doughty band of flesh and iron exploded into motion behind him.
But for a rickety produce truck from Hollister, the fork fell back into silence.