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with alarm because, "You made yourself a target the other night, Emmett. Put yourself right on the spot for anyone who feels threatened by you or who just doesn't like your looks to draw a bead on you, brother. Yep, you made yourself the number one target around here the other night when you got up on that stage and showed everyone just how much of a heavyweight you really are in the eyes of the people, and you better get used to the idea and get used to it fast, because from now on, you're it!" That was just the kind of comforting encouragement Emmett wanted to hear.

Someone else left a rusted World War II Italian Berretta wrapped in newspaper on the front seat of the Digger pickup, just after Emmett had jumped out of the truck for a moment to buy a can of Ballantine Ale at the Haight Street Liquor Store. When he returned and found the loosely packaged automatic pistol in the cab of the truck, he immediately pulled off the main thoroughfare and quickly parked alongside the curb of an inconspicuous, vacant side street where he read the hastily scribbled note that was stuck into the barrel of the Fun:


Theres been lots a storys going round about hpw your in danger Some evil persons dont like zvhat you do for us and they been spreading bad vibes on Haight Street about what is going to happen to you So we thought you can use this Its all we had and we know it don't look like much but we thought you can clean it up and its better than nothing if you dont have nothing else Anyway we want you to have it because it may help keep you safe and we wanted to show you that we are behind you 100% on account of we love you

From all of us who need you and hang out on Haight

Street and at the Do-nut shop


The sincerity of the note and the trouble the person or persons had gone to in explaining their offering to him convinced Emmett that there was indeed some heavy shit going down on the scene concerning him, and the anonymous chicken-scratched missive and rusty-gun gift did more to put him on edge than anything. It made him feel that there was really something he didn't know about himself or someone or something which was already common knowledge on the street, Dut which for some fucking reason was unapparent to him!

Or was it just a fucking put-on, a prank someone played on him [end page 366]


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