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Unformatted text preview: y. They gawked at our little building, obviously concerned and frightened but also waiting for some excitement. They'd never seen a bomb blast before. The Clanton city police had been joined by the Sheriff's deputies, and every uniform in the county was soon present, milling about on the sidewalks, doing absolutely nothing. Sheriff Coley and the police chief huddled and conferred and watched the throng across the street, then barked some orders here and there, but if any of their orders were followed it wasn't noticeable. It was obvious to all that the city and county had no bomb drills. Baggy needed a drink. It was too early for me. I followed him into the rear of the courthouse, up a narrow flight of stairs I'd not seen before, through a cramped hallway, then up another twenty steps to a small dirty room with a low ceiling. "Used to be the old jury room," he said. "Then it was the law library." "What is it now?" I asked, almost afraid of the answer. "The Bar Room. Get it? Bar? Lawyers? Booze?" "Got it." There was a card table with folding legs and a beaten look that indicated years of use. Around it were half a dozen mismatched chairs, all county hand-me-downs that had been passed from one county office to another and finally ditched in this dingy little room. In one corner there was a small refrigerator with a padlock. Baggy, of course, had a key, and inside he found a bottle of bourbon. He poured a generous shot into a paper cup and said, "Grab a chair." We pulled two of them up to the window, and below was the scene we had just left. "Not a bad view, huh?" he said proudly. "How often you come here?" "Twice a week, maybe, sometimes more. We play poker every Tuesday and Thursday at noon." "Who's in the club?" Generated by ABC Amber LIT Converter, http://www.processtext.com/abclit.html "It's a secret society." He took a sip and smacked his lips as if he'd been in the...
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- Spring '10