Men clustered around the bar of the smoke-filled room. Jerry looked up to see the lone figure of Pete Hamptom in the doorway.
"It can't be," Jerry said as he slumped to the floor.
Marv who was sitting on the next stool, urned just in time to see Jerry hit the floor.
"Hey." Marv called out. "Jerry's fainted."
Jim, one of Jerry's friends, laughed. "Probably too much booze. He'll be all right.
Marv's face reddened as he clenched his fists. "He's not all right. Now, come on. Help me get him up."
Marv slapped Jerry on the face in an effort to rouse him. "Come on, Jerry, wake up."
As Jerry came to, he said, "It can't be. Pete's dead. I saw his truck take a spill down the embankment toward the river, crash, and burn."
"You're seeing things, Jerry."
"No, that was Pete at the door. I'd know that hulky body anywhere." He pointed a weak finger toward the entrance.
Marv turned to look in the direction Jerry pointed, but Pete wasn't there. No one was.
"I tell you man, you're seeing things."
Jerry passed out again.
Fom behind him, Marv heard a deep bass voice say, "May I be of help here?"
Marv looked up to see a tall husky man.
"Marv?" the man questioned.
"It can't be. Pete? Pete Hampton?"
"One and the same."
"But you're dead. You died when yhour truck careened down that embankment at Hell's Cvanyon."
"Oh, the trufk went down all right,. but I was thrown clear when it hit a rock.
Jerry roused and rubbed his eyes. "It can't be. You're a ghost," he said to Pete. "I saw... Pete's gone. He's never coming back," he mumbled.
"But, I'm here," Pete said. "I'm not going anywhere."