Grandad gave me a lot of advice when I was growing up.
Stand up for what you believe, but don’t ever go to bed angry.
Tell your secrets to the fireflies and moths, it’s the only way they’re safe outside of your own head.
Actions speak louder than words, especially if the action is a solid right hook.
The one he mentioned more than any other was, stay the hell away from the old Boundary Canyon mine.
I feel bad, thinking back, about how all his advice pretty much fell on deaf ears. For whatever reason, I’m a masterclass in doing the opposite of what I’m told.
Two failed marriages should tell you all you need to know about how accustomed I am to going to bed angry, about how I never figured out how to speak up for myself.
I learned the lesson about telling secrets too late. Sometimes trust isn’t as strong as you think, sometimes friend is a four-letter word.
Never did like to fight. Thought I could talk my way out of anything. Turns out reason isn’t always an effective tactic when you’re staring down an angry red neck.
That brings us to Boundary Canyon, and the opening of the big hole leading to the cold and dark and who knows what else. Except, I do know. At least a little. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be standing here, letting the barricades and bright orange warning signs taunt me. I’ve got a backpack of supplies that probably won’t help a bit, and a flashlight with half-dead batteries flickering in one hand. All going well, I’m about to put to rest the talk about Tom Payne’s bones, a treasure beyond the minerals the ground was opened up for in the first place, that the curse isn’t real, and neither is the ghost. Might even prove that Grandad was wrong at least once in his life. All going well.