Key West to Hollywood

Started by Jimmy Drummond at Jul 31, 2020 8:51 AM
January 24, 1924
32 Views
3 Posts

Jimmy Drummond

Mechanic, Driver, Racketeer
110
?Years Young
13 Posts

"If it's got an engine, I can drive it."


It was slow and easy backing the Liberty away from the slip. Ever so gently it turned and faced the open water, but he trip ahead was not to take the boat to open water but to follow along the coastline, as most pleasure boats do. Skirting the keys as he headed north.

Jimmy Drummond powered up the boat to a comfortable speed, responding smoothly over the water, which for the time being was like glass. Dawn was barely breaking as the boat slid through ocean surface, leaving a bioluminescence wake which would disappear as daylight approached.

Steady at the helm. Coffee in hand and a days sailing ahead of him Jimmy was at home piloting the Liberty toward Hollywood Florida and his delivery to Dixon, an excursion he had completed many times for as many different reasons. But this was the part of the job he loved. Out on the water, either with Michael or Dix, preferably with both. Granted he could have driven, but what fun was that?

Danger was always a part of the job, no matter what it was, or who it was with. Just a part of the business. It was why they were always armed. This trip being no exception. A 1911 automatic in his shoulder holster, and a Winchester 12 Gauge 1897 Trench Gun by his side in its rack. But there was seldom trouble along the route he was taking.

As the sun appeared over the horizon everything became illuminated, another crisp clear January day, with better visibility, Jimmy could make out the coastline, the meager traffic, though the vehicles were quite small in the distance until the highway turned inland, as it would several times throughout the journey north.


TBC


Jimmy Drummond

Mechanic, Driver, Racketeer
110
?Years Young
13 Posts

"If it's got an engine, I can drive it."


For Jimmy, the main concern was a threat as old as sailing itself, Pirates. There was never any telling when or where they might be encountered, so a steady eye on the seascape around him was a must. Yet a watch on the coastline traffic was also important for those engaged in illegal trafficking.

Jimmy had detailed the Liberty ahead of the trip, having only what contraband was required on board. The rest was safely hidden back in Key West. Besides, Jimmy firmly believed that the Liberty could outrun any powerboat on the water. If it came to a fight, the BAR lay in plain sight even though it might be illegal, better available, and illegal than not available.

So far the horizon in every direction was clear, but when he was in closer due to the contracted since of the passage through some of the keys he was seeing the same black sedan keeping pace with him. So, he powered up and immediately left the automobile behind. A matter of minutes he throttled down to see if the sedan was shadowing him, even though it had been discovered.  

He was closing on Key Largo and he would lose the automobile after that until possibly a section between Key Largo and North Key Largo, after that he would cut into Lindeman creek by way of Angelfish Creek and into Card Sound, then throttle up into Biscayne Bay and the run for Hollywood. That is if everything went as planned.

TBC


Jimmy Drummond

Mechanic, Driver, Racketeer
110
?Years Young
13 Posts

"If it's got an engine, I can drive it."


He thought the car appeared again but,  it did not, perhaps he was just jumpy, or a little too much coffee. He was in Biscayne bay and decided to head further out into open water, he would have to anyway at Key Biscayne. Perhaps the car was not shadowing him, merely headed north as he was, and his destination, probably nowhere close to Hollywood.

Sometimes it was a jittery proposition running contraband, no matter how one did it. Of course, with Mike and Dix along, things were a lot more relaxed than when he was by himself, his head on a swivel whether in a car or on the Liberty. There were real dangers on the road, he felt a lot more vulnerable on the highway than he did on the water. Aside from being armed, on the water, he had far more speed than most local craft. Few privately-owned craft had the horsepower of the Liberty.

But the men aboard the boat rushing full throttle out of Boca Chita, some ten miles off the coast, but only four or perhaps less from Jimmy and the Liberty. His head snapped around as his ears picked up the sound of a marine engine screaming in protest. Looking to starboard he saw it headed right for him. He was cruising so he had plenty of throttle left. He looked ahead, the horizon clear, to port, nothing, just he and the other boat plowing toward him for all it was worth.

Now Jimmy was no fool, and he was calculating the distance between the two. It seemed the incoming boat was about to overtake the Liberty when Jimmy cranked wheel hard starboard and shoved the throttle to the stop. The bow rose out of the water as she shot forward as Jimmy righted the wheel rushing past the other boat, his wake rocking the other craft so the shots fired came nowhere near him. He chopped the throttle, raced to the BAR, and sprang back to the wheel, jamming the throttle forward. heading back toward the other boat. Laying the rifle on the windscreen, he roped the wheel to maintain direction then picked up the weapon.

Cocking the rifle he aimed at the turning craft and fired five shots at the waterline then five more at the bridge, then dropping gun he pulled the knotted rope from the wheel and blew past the craft. Unaware if he had caused leaks or casualties he put distance between them before throttling down. Back to his cruising speed, back on route to Hollywood.

TBC