Friday, February 8, 2013

Chapter 145: Murder by Marshmallows

We sat atop White Cap Mountain, eating lunch and wondering just where in the heck was that supposed view of Katahdin that was promised us in the guidebook. Buckeye and Fredo had rejoined the party, and we all sat several yards away from an astonishingly large group of day hikers, so as to not disturb them with our by-now heinous standards of personal hygiene. We also tried to keep our voices to a minimum, so our normal mid-day conversation regarding our respective bowel movements wouldn't ruin their meal.

Unfortunately, our attempts to keep our true natures hidden proved futile, as a father and son duo learned to their ultimate detriment, as they overheard Buckeye brazenly offering to perform depraved sex acts on Fredo in exchange for something ridiculously inconsequential, like a spare Pop Tart.

We soon found ourselves alone atop the mountain, which wasn't bad at all. Buckeye politely reminded us that he had hiked out several pounds of S'more fixings for us, and cautioned that if we didn't help him eat them that night he was going to murder us all in our sleep. Yes, we were to feast that night on sumptuous chocolate, crispy graham crackers and toasted marshmallows, but on one condition: the Georgia Peaches would not be getting any.

Fredo was the most vociferous in his objections to the hypothetical inclusion of the Peaches. He seemed to be taking their continued existence in the world as a personal affront, as a challenge to his emotional and psychological well-being. I understood, and we all agreed to move on posthaste lest the lecherous blood-suckers catch up. Before we began our descent, we serendipitously happened upon the side trail to the viewpoint of Katahdin, clearly marked as it was with a freshly painted sign. We checked it out. Katahdin looked like a cloud. It was cloudy. We moved on.

The hike down to the East Branch Lean-to was so exhausting and fraught with danger that I must have blacked out from the stress. I remember nothing about it. Perhaps there were rocks, and maybe some trees. Anyway, it was nearly dark by the time we arrived, and there were already several older women there, a bunch of alumni thru-hikers enjoying a reunion tour of sorts. A pleasant bunch, they were of course overjoyed to see us and cheerfully cleared room for us in the shelter.

Considering a single marshmallow weighs approximately 5.66990463 grams, two pounds of marshmallows is a lot. Even for a through hiker on a 5,000 calorie diet, eating more than eight s'mores is probably pushing it. Needless to say, after stuffing ourselves sick, we found ourselves in the unenviable position of having extra. Extra marshmallows, extra chocolate, extra everything. It was all just too much. We offered s'mores to our newfound companions, but found few takers. We had already eaten too much, and were growing increasingly fearful that any left overs would undoubtedly end up in the gaping maws of our sworn enemies. Those girls were still out there, somewhere, lurking.

"Oh my God! Hey guys!" came a voice over my shoulder.

"I am so hungry!" said Sodium Chloride or Calypso, sitting down next to the fire. "I would literally do anything for some food right now."

"She's not kidding," contributed the other, disrobing. "When she says anything, she means anything! And by anything I mean sexual favors."

"And by sexual favors, she means--"

Buckeye had heard enough. "Would you like some s'mores?" he asked, cutting them off, barely able to contain his anticipatory glee.

At that point, Fredo, Hot Sauce and I decided to turn in, anything to avoid the gross spectacle that followed. Buckeye eventually worked out a deal with the girls in which he would provide them with food in exchange for absolutely nothing.

And it would be days yet, still, until we were rid of them.

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