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underwater official cover

When the catch dries up, you move upstream, inland through the rivers and creeks, until you find fresher waters. Teddy guided his flat-bottomed boat through the shallow channel, checking his juglines and limblines. A couple sets of tags under his and family members names let him run as many lines as he wanted. State limits be damned. Everyone around knew this stretch of river belonged to him, so there shouldn’t be anyone out here to run to the game wardens anyway.

He struggled to keep the vessel centered to avoid running the hull into the piles of jagged wood submerged along the banks. He’d lost his last fiberglass boat that way. Working a stump bed, a sharp branch had pushed through the side, leaving a ragged, splintered hole. Teddy walked half a day back to his truck. He had left his jugs, the start of a decent catch, and the piece of shit hull behind. No roads wound that far through the woods, so he guessed the next flood sailed it downstream where it became someone else’s problem.

He navigated a narrow bend and froze, stunned desire catching him. On the grassy bank, a flimsy department store tent meant for front-yard sleepovers stood where it shouldn’t. In front of the tent, on a blanket, a pretty blond girl lay nude in the sun that dappled through the leaves.

He shut the motor off, coasting to avoid disturbing such beauty.

Clothes hung from a nearby branch. Probably some college girl down from State camping when she decided to catch a little sun; God bless her. He could see the smooth rise of her ass past her bronze back. She was perfect.

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