Busted Axle Road
Chapter 69

Copyright© 1993, 2001, 2010

When Jenny was working on the movie set, there really wasn't a lot for Blake to do. Makeup came early, and the days were long, shooting scenes over and over. Still, Blake tried to stay around Jenny, in case he was needed, and it could get pretty boring. He'd learned long before to take a book with him, but even with a book, the twelve and fourteen hour days could get boring, indeed.

Some days, though, he wouldn't be around the set all day. He could get the shopping in, and occasionally do a little exploring around the lot, but he'd seen movies made before, and it was nothing new to him.

It was going a lot better with Jenny than he'd ever expected it could have. Whatever it was she'd done on her vacation at home in Spearfish Lake seemed to be sticking with her. She was always bright and cheerful on the set, but that was Jenny, but there was none of the depression he'd found at home on the days after shooting on her past movies. It made life a whole lot easier for him, and he wasn't complaining.

Even Knox hadn't been able to puncture Jenny's good cheer. She had turned him down flat on the October weekends in Vegas, and even though he called or wrote letters frequently, trying to get her to change her mind, she stood firm, and Blake watched in wonderment.

Of course, Jenny was tired when he drove her home -- the long days really were boring for her, too -- but she didn't seem unhappy. To make things go a little easier, they stopped off at restaurants or fast food places on the way back to Malibu, but often shortly after they arrived, he was at the piano, trying out new arrangements with Jenny. "I've never seen you work this hard," he commented once.

"I have to keep reminding myself that I'm really a singer," she said. "You stand up in front of a crowd, and you don't get a chance to screw things up. It has to be right the first take. This stuff of shooting over and over -- well, it takes a little music to get it out of my system."

Thursdays were still a good day, though, Blake realized. That was the day that the Spearfish Lake Record-Herald arrived by next-day air, and everything came to a screeching halt while Jenny pored through it. Though she still read every word, Blake noticed that she really gave close attention to the real estate ads. "You haven't given up on going back, have you?" he asked one Thursday night.

"Stronger than ever," Jenny replied. "By next spring, I should be pretty well through with all the piddly stuff. If I'm lucky, we should be able to do the worst of the moving in March, then we've got the European tour, and that's one of those things I'd do, anyway. But, we should be able to spend the best part of spring and all of summer at Spearfish Lake."

"You know," Blake said. "You ought to think about keeping this house. You're still going to be spending a lot of time in L.A."

"No," Jenny said. "If I have it, I'll be tempted to live here. Let's find a little apartment in the hills, just small enough to be a bit uncomfortable. That'll remind me that I really don't want to be here, if I get tempted."

"Are you done with the Record-Herald yet?" Blake asked. "If I'm going to be living there, maybe I ought to start reading it. It'd help me to know a little about the place."

"Pretty well done," Jenny said, handing him a part of the paper. "Here's the front section. I want to go over the real estate ads some more. It's too bad there's such a time difference; Binky Augsberg has got a house here it would be fun to call her on."

Blake picked up the paper, and began to glance it over. The lead story was "SNAKE STYMIES SEWER SYSTEM", and he began to read the story of the meeting in the city manager's office.

"This Sanford person the Defenders of Gaea sent to Spearfish Lake seems to be a pretty sharp cookie," he commented.

"Doesn't she, though? The way I read that, if she can stop the EPA from forcing the city to have to do the sewer system, it'll save the taxpayers a lot of money. If that happens, I'm going to be real glad that I staked them."

"It seems to be working out, so far," Blake said. "I halfway figured that the Defenders would be a pain in the ass for the city, but it doesn't seem to be working out that way."

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