Peter Paul Plunkett *Note the date of this correspondence, could we agree to disagree on which of us is the fool here? Daryl Leroy finally returned my phone calls.
I understood that he had a driving gig for a company that delivers all over the country and that my cousin seldom makes it home.
Apparently his sister, Elizabeth, sporadically checks on his property and found my messages on his answering machine.
She called Daryl Leroy on his company issued cell phone (I didn’t have this number) and Daryl Leroy, in turn called me. “Peter, you still running around barefoot at Reed College seducing the coeds?” “Hey Cuz, good to hear your voice.
Where are you?” “Monroe Louisiana.
I got a litter of puppies to pick up and then I am delivering them to points west.” “How’s the job going?” “Great man.
One of these days don’t be surprised if I show up on your doorstep in Oregon.” “You better make it soon.
At the end of this semester I’m heading off to school in the Silicon Valley area of California.” “Leave your address with my little sister.
I make it out that way several times a year—more often than I do Oregon.
So what’s up? Why have you been calling? “It’s about your mother.
She’s suffered a breakdown.
I didn’t want to leave that on your machine.
I figured to let you know, than you could find out how your mom’s doing before letting the girls in on it.
I know how upset Liz and Shelly Keats tend to become.” “Where is my mom?” The Rilke Institute.
It’s in Yukon, Oklahoma, hang on, I’ve got the address written down somewhere.” I gave Daryl Leroy the information.
We spoke for a few more minutes and then he had to get his rig fueled and be on his way.
I hope that Daryl Leroy stops and sees about Indigo, he isn’t all that reliable—although he is probably more together than his mother or his sisters—but barely. When I was a kid, I’d get sent out West to spend the summer with my cousins—it was either that or I’d get stuck in some godforsaken summer camp in Maine, or even worse, Vermont.
My parents didn’t want me hanging around Newark and associating with the hoodlums who attended public school.
It wasn’t long before I was living fulltime with my aunt and cousins Indigo Bleu and her children lived in rural Oklahoma, among a scattering of small towns and villages.
I never knew what she did for money.
I suspect that my father sent her a pile of the stuff when I was exiled to her care.
During those years, I never considered it strange that my mother never once visited.
I was the pipeline for the sister’s attempts at civilized discourse. “You tell your mother this.” Or, “Tell your Auntie Indigo . . ..” The thing that neither of these sisters knew was how criminal Daryl Leroy was or how corrupt I would become. I never met my cousin’s father, a man everyone referred to as Mister Bleu.
He was in prison for kidnap and murder—this was something that none of us talked about.
I am pretty sure that Mister Bleu was Daryl Leroy’s biological father.
I do know that he was in prison when both Shelly Keats and Elizabeth Browning were born, I had met some of my Auntie’s boyfriends—she had lots of them, although none of these so-called gentlemen ever bothered, to my knowledge, to father-up.
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