Small Town Drug Dealer by Meagan Masterman

It comes in little bags. Little Ziploc bags, like the ones they package jewelry in down at the junk shop. You know what I mean. The bracelets with bright plastic beads?

There’s only a smidge of it in each bag, but it’s worth a lot. Like diamonds. You’ve got to seal up the bags carefully or else you’ll have trouble. You’ve got to use your index finger to smooth the zipper down. Make sure you get the corners. And when you’re driving with it go slow or else you’ll get pulled over and you’ll have trouble.

If you’re careful and you only talk to the right people you can make some real money. You can make some easy money in this hard town. Of course, sometimes you can’t be cautious. Sometimes you’ve got to drive fast and talk to whoever pays.

Don’t let them come to you. At least don’t let them come to your house. You live on what passes for a crowded street out here in middle of nowhere. And if people are coming in and out all day someone nosy is bound to notice. Maybe you can use someone else’s house for a while, someone who lives out on a dirt road that’s easy to overlook. You can use their house if they’re low on cash and need a fix.

You’ll meet a lot of people and mostly they’ll want to talk to you. But you shouldn’t talk to them, no matter how lonely you get driving around all day and looking over your shoulder. Why? Because eventually they’ll run out of money and come begging. If you’re friends it’ll be harder to slam the door. And you have to slam the door.

Remember you can’t trust anybody not to turn you in unless they’ve got something to lose too. It’s best to stay with your own kind, poor schmucks who sling this too. Together you can complain about the potholes or how slick it gets when there’s greasy snow coming down. How sliding off the road could spell disaster. Late at night, when it’s almost morning, when your work is done, you can go with a schmuck or two to the all-night diner and laugh with each other right down until the moment you lick the last flick of pancake syrup off your plate.

But remember, if worse comes to worse that schmuck could roll on you too. You could see him on the stand in the courtroom. Him in a suit, you in a jumpsuit, and no one who matters would know that once you were indistinguishable, both scruffy and wearing sweatpants.

Meagan Masterman is a writer in rural Maine. Her work has appeared in Reality Hands, Be About It, Specter Magazine, and others. Her Twitter handle is @MeaganWords.