Steele Drivin' Man 6/?
Date: Monday, November 20, 2000
Anne Rose <>

He's back!

Steele Drivin' Man 6/?
September 28, 1982
Mileage: 20,602
Oil change, pair of new tires (rear)

I think this must have been the worst day of Miss Holt's life. Make that, a couple of days.

Last night we pulled up to her house and she and Mr. Steele got out. They had a pretty nice time together, I could tell. The champagne was out and sometimes it got really quiet back there, until the phone rang. I was sent on my way - it didn't take me long to learn that two pats on the limo roof means, "go away, Fred". It was really late, and I was tired, so I pulled out and headed home, but a couple of blocks away I got stuck at the railroad crossing by a long freight train. I sat and waited, checking my mirrors, when all of a sudden a flash in the sky caught my eye, and then a rumble shook the car.

Call it what you want, but I had a gut feeling something was very wrong at Miss Holt's. No one was behind me so I swung the beast around in a big Y turn and headed back.

When I got to her house I couldn't believe what I saw. There was nothing there but a flaming pile of wood and shingles. There were bits of house all over the neighborhood. I parked around the corner from the disaster area, and a few seconds later the fire trucks rolled up.

I found Miss Holt and Mr. Steele down the sidewalk watching the house. They both looked terrible - smoky and dirty. Mr. Steele looked like he'd been scared out of his skin, but Miss Holt looked like she was in shock. I asked her if they were all right, but she just stared at the house like she didn't even hear me.

It took quite a while to put out the fire, and the fire marshal had all kinds of questions for Miss Holt. After the fire trucks left, Mr. Steele tried to convince Miss Holt that he should find her a hotel room. She wouldn't budge, though, so I finally suggested that we camp out in the limo. It wasn't very comfortable, but I didn't have any other ideas. I'm going to have to get the upholstery cleaned.

As soon as it was light we looked over the damage, and if it could've looked worse, it did. The fire marshal came around again, and the gas company. I was walking to the corner to buy a paper when I heard Mr. Steele calling me, loud. I saw Miss Holt on the run to her car, and he was heading for the limo, looking for me. We took off after her, but she had too much of a head start and by the time I got turned around I'd lost her.

In the afternoon me and Mr. Steele were driving around while he made a bunch of calls with the phone book on his lap. I'm not sure what happened at the restaurant we stopped at, because he wasn't there long enough to eat. Looked like he'd got into a tussle with somebody. Anyway, finally he told me to head over to Abell's Pianos. Well, I know we've been to some strange places during work hours but this one really had me confused. Mr. Steele told me to come inside with him, so I stood around while he asked the salesman a million questions. They walked all over the showroom looking at pianos. This went on for quite a while and to tell you the truth I was getting pretty bored, so I sat down at one of the little uprights in the front window and started to goof around. I heard Mr. Steele stop in mid sentence and race over to where I was playing. He practically dragged me off the bench and pulled me over to this magnificent grand, must have been a 5'8". He told me to play a little something, which I was happy to do.

After a couple of minutes he told the salesman he'd take it, and thanked me for making his life simpler. Well, I have no idea what he was talking about. He and the salesman took care of the paperwork, and we were out of there. Call me confused.

After work we were driving around the light-industrial area near Skid Row and Mr. Steele had me stop in front of this rundown warehouse building. There were lights on upstairs, and Mr. Steele got out. He looked up at the windows for a long time, and then I really thought he'd lost his senses. He told me to go on home, that he would walk. Well I know these two are big on taking chances, but since I would like to keep my job, and I can't if something happens to them, I stayed about a block behind Mr. Steele until I saw him go into his building.

I wonder who in their right mind would live in a warehouse district.

To be continued...
To Part 7