Son of Fletch

Gregory Mcdonald is the author of twenty-six books, including eleven Fletch novels and four Flynn mysteries. He has twice won the Mystery Writers of America’s prestigious Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Mystery Novel, and was the first author to win for both a novel and its sequel. He lives in Tennessee. His Web site is

Books by Gregory Mcdonald


Fletch Won

Fletch, Too

Fletch and the Widow Bradley

Carioca Fletch

Confess, Fletch

Fletch’s Fortune

Fletch’s Moxie

Fletch and the Man Who

Son of Fletch Fletch Reflected


The Buck Passes Flynn

Flynn’s In

Flynn’s World


Skylar in Yankeeland

Running Scared The Brave


Who Took Toby Rinaldi? (Snatched)

Love Among the Mashed Potatoes (Dear M.E.)

Exits and Entrances

Merely Players A World Too Wide

The Education of Gregory Mcdonald (Souvenirs of a Blown World)


Mister Fletcher?”

In the hard rain, Fletch had stopped the Jeep at the roadblock on the narrow county road. It was raining so hard he and Carrie had almost failed to see the sputtering warning flares as they came down the twisting, rock- walled road through the gap.

When the Jeep was stopped in front of the two county police cars parked as a wedge facing them, their headlights lit, a great bulk of a man wearing a yellow slicker, dark, wide-brimmed hat lumbered toward them. He was lit by the Jeep’s headlights but more backlit by the high beams of the police cars.

“Ha!” Carrie had said. “Fletch, I told you not to leave your popcorn bucket on the floor of the movie theater! They’re out lookin’ for you, now they’ve cotched you, and they’ll put you under the jailhouse for sure.”

“Who is that?” Fletch asked.

The rain pounding on the canvas roof of the Jeep made them speak loudly.

“Rondy,” Carrie answered. “You know him. His uncle is Biggie Wilson. You been huntin’ with him, that time you all treed the Carter boy ‘cause he has the natural smell of possum.”

Fletch opened the Jeep’s door, as that was easier than unzippering the window.

“Hiya, Rondy. How’s your Uncle Big Stuff?”

“He’s just fine, Mister Fletcher.” Rondy flashed his light around the interior of the Jeep. He leaned to look directly behind their seats. “Evenin’, Carrie. You folks doin’ all right?”

Carrie said, “Happier than worms wrigglin’ in warm mud.”

Rain was pouring off the brim of the deputy’s hat. “Plenty of warm mud around.”

“What’s happening, Rondy?” Carrie leaned forward in the passenger seat and spoke across Fletch. “The sheriff misplace his spectacles again?”

“Some villains decided to take themselves a little vacation from the federal penitentiary up in Kentucky, Carrie.”

“Can’t blame ‘em,” Fletch said. “We’ve been advertising Tennessee as a vacation spot. Take yourselves off to Tennessee. Isn’t that the slogan?”

“We’ve been told to welcome tourists all right, Mister Fletcher. It’s just that we’re concerned these particular fellows, being wards of the government, a federal responsibility, might stay out so late they just might miss their breakfasts.”

“Can’t let that happen.”

“No, sir. They left home without any pocket money, is what has us worried.”

Fletch smiled. “Armed and dangerous?”

“We don’t know if they’re armed yet. If not, they sure will be soon enough. Dangerous for sure.”

Also dressed in yellow slickers, wide-brimmed hat, black rubber boots, carrying a flashlight, Sheriff Rogers came up and joined Deputy Wilson at the Jeep’s door.

The jeans on Fletch’s left leg were getting soaked.

“Mister Fletcher. Miss Carrie.”

“Howdy, Sheriff,” Carrie said. “Don’t Francie let you take a shower-bath at home anymore?”

“Says I keep leavin’ wet towels on the bathroom floor. So she sends me out every time there’s a hard rain. She’s been complainin’ about wet towels on the floor thirty-two years now.” The sheriff grinned. “Funny how some women never change.”

“Nor should we,” sniffed Carrie.

“How long since you all been gone from the farm?”

“Few hours,” Fletch answered. “Went to St. Ives, had supper, saw a movie. Left home about what, five- fifteen?”

“You got guns at home, Mister Fletcher?”


“Anywhere an intruder could find them?”



“No. The shells and cartridges are kept separate.”

“That’s good. Maybe we should send Rondy here home with you.”

Rondy frowned at the little space in the back of the Jeep.

“We’ll be all right. How many villains are you lookin’ for tonight?”

“Four.” The sheriff fished a wet piece of paper out of his pocket and held his flashlight on it under the Jeep’s roof.

“One murderer, one attempted murderer, one kidnapper, and one serving heavy time on drug charges.”

“Shoot,” Fletch said. “I thought Rondy said these were bad dudes. You have their names there?”

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