Darién Gap

When they stopped for the night, they seemed to be at the end of the road. The highway, such as it was, had finally petered out. The ground in the screened clearing to which Lenore had pulled off felt spongy under Milo's bare feet. He could smell salt marshes somewhere close by, and realized that this must be the Darién Gap. There was no way to build even a rudimentary highway through the hills and marshes of the peninsula that joined North and South America. Here, the Pan American Highway ceased to be even a concept.

They were, he thought dully, done. They couldn't go any further. As he padded around the clearing, feeling short tufts of saltwater grass under his feet, suddenly it felt to him like he end of their aimless road. The end of the world.

Lenore hadn't seemed to notice his blue silence, and Milo didn't want to kill her happy mood. He felt vague stirrings of restorative horniness, and decided he might as well ride the flow of whatever Lenore was cooking up.

She, meanwhile, had busied herself over the camp stove, heating a stockpot of lime juice, stirring in sugar, adding gelatine. She dipped a spoon, tasted the thickening mix, nodded, then uncorked and poured the entire contents of each bottle. It was when she smirked seductively up at him, licked each bottle rim in turn, then from each shook a small pickled worm into the pot, that he began to understand.

Lime jello. With a serious, serious mezcal kick.

Lenore poured the pot's contents into the motley collection of jam and penaut butter jars they'd accumulated and saved during their southward odyssey, nestled them into the styro camp cooler with the ice, and closed the lid. Then she turned to Milo, face aglow with sunburn and carnal lust and said, "It'll take awhile to set, lover. Meantime, roll us a spliff the size of the Hindenberg!"

Milo, hands suddenly nervous and clumsy, and the sudden, awkward, twisted sideways erection cramped into his pants even more nervous and clumsy, cracked the baggie of Gold and hastened to do her bidding. The final product's finish was nowhere near up to his usual , but it was monumental, even by their increasingly THC-tolerant standards, with copious ZigZags moistened and overlapped to extend its length, girth and gravitas.

He licked it down, hoping Lenore had her lighter ready, because he was pretty sure that in his current condition of overpressurized priapism, trying to reach into his jeans for matches was going to be a mortifying experience for them both.

But Lenore surprised him.

"That's gorgeous!" she cried, smiling and kissing him lightly, teasingly on the lips in such a way that his socks might have been swept off in a tidal wave right then, if he'd been wearing any. "So fucking big and long... now put it away and take a walk in the village while the jello sets and I make myself beautiful for you. Anticipation is going to make this even sweeter. Shoo! Now! And don't forget to come right back here in two hours!"

As if he could forget. Milo, mind, vocal chords and crotch strangled, could only nod mutely as she pushed him out the van's door, smiling nearly as idiotically as Armand. And, for the moment, drooling more.

At first disappointed, then deciding he really could stand to cool off a little, and maybe still get a headstart on the evening's buzz, he wandered barefoot toward the village a half-kilometre back up the track. When he got there, he was in a sweat, and thirsty. His eyes scuttled like disturbed cucarachas beneath the low galvanized-roof verandas of the adobe buildings clustered loosely along the main drag, searching for signs of a gringo-friendly cantina. Hell, any cantina...