"Okay then," The car glided along the road. He flew along at top speed just puttering. The song changed and he hit a straight away. "So are you going to let me drive you to Cali?" He looked back at her. "I think you might like Charile, hes cool."
She nodded. He asked the question and she sighed "Well, unless you stop between here and there I might as well, you're probably just as stubborn as I am" she said with an unspoken hmpf. She hated not being able to do things on her own. She smirked "Slow down and shut up" She said quickly. She hopped out and walked quietly, stringing the bow She aimed and shot, one of her lucky shots in the eye, it was a buck, a nice big one. She hurried to retrieve it dragging it behind her.
He pulled up next to her. and hopped out to load the deer for her. He slipped the arrow out of its eye and admired the shot. "That's quiet a shot," He whisteled. "And we are for sure stopping now 'cause it's getting dark." He pointed at the sky. and continued. "And we have to cut this b*****d up."
Avery shrugged "Lucky shot, its usually in the neck or something, James was a better shot then I ever could be, got 'em in the eye every time" she spoke in a hollow tone. Pulling the dagger from her boot she smiled "alright lets find a place to crash and make a fire and all that so I can slice this thing up" she said confidently.
Max nodded and fired up the steam engine. He puttered around a bend and came to a lake. He pulled the car across the hard packed ground and stopped. Hopping out he did his usual stopping routine. He checked the water in the boiler, then made a fire with the coals from the firebox. and then he. carried the deer to a tree and hung it up by it's hind legs. He rook off his duster and swords and lay them on a nearby rock so they wouldn't get dirty.
With expert precision he opened the carcass and dropped the entrails into a bucket that he would deal with later. He tossed a look over his shoulder at Avery. "Can you make a tanning rack?" He asked, knife making quick work of the deers hams. "There is a good amount of leather here that I would like to save."
Avery walked along, not quite bothering to get into the car again. She watched him standing to the side. While he checked the car and made a fire she looked at the deer trying to estimate how much meat they'd have. If she was going to let him drive her to Cali she may as well make use of herself. She watched as he set his stuff a little ways above the ground on a flat rock before using his blade to cut open the carcass. She smirked as the entrails dropped into a bucket like fat slimy worms.
Looking at him she nodded "Sure no problem, I'll uh, be back" she said as she pointed down the forest. She began to walk and soon found some good wood to use. She stripped some just like her father showed her to make some wire for the tanning rack. Crouching she pieced and tied it together before carrying it back to him to be finished.
Just as she returned, Max broke the deers neck with his knee and twisted the head off. He looked up as she returned. "Looks good," was all he said and peeled the hide off the deer. He trimmed the torn edges off and guided her to the back of his car. "You're about to learn how to flesh a hide," He folded a board off the back of the car and laid the skin over it and clamped it on to the board. He showed her how to sit over the skin and ,using the back of the knife, scrape the scraps of meat from the skin without tearing it. He moved so she could take the seat.
Avery nodded "Thanks. Dad showed me how to make one" she said half proudly. She set it down and followed him. The deer was now headless, flesh a hide?..sounds weird she thought as she watched. He showed her and then she took over doing exactly as he'd instructed. Avery learned by watching and it only took one try before she got it down. She watched her hands careful not to press to hard but, just hard enough to get the scraps of meat off. Without looking up she said "Did you have any family?... Anyone you had to take care of?" she asked loud enough for him to hear.
Max moved back to the carcass. He sharpened his knife for a second. "Yes," he checked the edge with his thumb. "I sent my parents and brother and sister and grand parents ahead of me to vegas. i had to teach my brother how to fight and kill a man like a hot knife through butter. My Dad left when i was three and my mom married the b*****d she has now." He carved for a minute. "he tried to teach me what he didnt know and i had to school him too. And you know?" H looked back at her. "And that was satisfying to watch that sit back and go, "UUUGH What happened?" " He started laughing as he did his impression of his step father.
Avery looked at him pausing for a moment. She titled her head to the side "Oh, Well you'll see them when you get there" She said casually. She didn't want to say maybe because it would make her think of her brother and how she hoped beyond hope that he was still alive. He knew much more then she did when it came to surviving. She watched him and giggled shaking her head "That's cool, We lost our mom to them and my dad got remarried to the slut he had before he died and we figured she was in the secret militia...anyways im done here" She said moving out of the way, wiping the flat of her blade on the shins of her pants before shoving it back into her pants.
Max looked over the hide. "Nice job, Rookie," he touched her with his elbow and smiled. He pulled the hide across the frame and fastened it down. "And if youre brothers anything like you hes fine." He added some fire wood to the fire and set the hide next to it. The fire licked up into the air and blazed to life. Then he packed the meat into coolers and loaded it into the hallow bed of the steam car. He took a grate from the car and laid it onto the fire. Some meat went into a skillet and the skillet oto the grate. Max sat on a rock next to the fire with an old black acoustic flattop guitar. He played a few bars and began to sing in his loud baritone.
Avery shrugged "Thanks I guess" she said with a half smile. She nodded "Yeah... I hope so" she said looking away. She watched him do his thing, he didn't ask for her help so she didn't give it. She watched as he began to cook the food and then as he began to play and sing. She sat on a flat rock opposite the fire listening her eyes downcast.
Max looked over and saw her looking gloomy. "Hey now," He said, setting up. "Look we have food and good water a warm fire." He gestured to each respectively. "To us country folk thats what we need to have a good time." HE looked at her unchanging expression. He held up a jug of liquid. "Moonshine?"
She gave a half-hearted smile that didn't quite reach her eyes "S-Sorry, Thinking too much isn't good for me" Avery said with a half shrug. She nodded, but, she wasnt a country folk, she grew up with her parents and her family in a big city. She shrugged "Oh why not, I should warn you I'm not much of one to hold her liquor, I dont puke though" she said as she took a sip of the moonshine.
""HA ha ha ha ha," He laughed and took a swig. "Whoooo!" he cried loudly. "That my dear is what you Fire water." He set his bottle down and sighed. He picked his guitar again and began to sing an old Hank Williams song called. "A tear in my beer"