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TL REVIEW 8.28.19

Meet Hector Rosales.


Rocky was getting nervous.  He wanted to get off the street, so he knocked again. A pretty face appeared in the round window of half-inch glass.  Smiling, she let him in.  The blaring music hit him in the face.  He looked for Captain Roberto Cruz, the entrepreneurial Federale who ran the local drug cartel.

“Thanks, Araceli. The Captain around?”

“No, but there’s Hector.”  She nodded to a table where three men sat.  Groups of rough-looking men sat around other tables.  The place was busy, filled with the aroma of stale beer and tobacco smoke, but quiet — no arguments or fights.

“Thanks, I see him.”  redude

Hector got up to meet Rocky.  He was not short, but stocky with an ample stomach that made him look low to the ground.  He wore spotted khaki pants and a gray Tuna Club T-shirt with a picture of a lady tuna wearing red lipstick.  She had large breasts and stood on her tail; motion lines around her body indicated she jiggled. Hector usually wore a ponytail, but today his unbraided hair hung down his back like fringe.  He maneuvered around shards of broken glass on squeaky huaraches.  Looking down at the floor, he jerked his head toward an old man who danced with a broom.

“Hey Abraham, get your ass over here.  Sweep this mess up, you worthless shit.”

Abraham hustled to the wreckage and swept with a tule-grass broom.

“Hey, que pasa, Rocky.”

“Bueno, Hector, how ’bout you.”

Hector Rosales was owner of the Tuna Club.  He pointed to a bloody spot, ringed in broken glass.  “Abraham, can’t you see that?”

“It went good,” said Rocky, just above a whisper.  “Calles had a printing accident.”

“Cruz’ll be happy to hear that.”

Speaking in a low tone, Hector looked back at a pair of men sitting at the table he’d just left. The younger man Rocky knew as Gabriel, but he didn’t know the fat man in a tan safari suit who was sitting with him.

Hector said, “C’mon. You know Gabriel. I’ll introduce you to his asshole friend.”

Rocky followed and found an empty chair next to Hector.  Rocky had always been wary of Gabriel, a wiseass kid with a temper and a big mouth.

Hector sat back with a sigh.  “And here’s Gabriel,” said Hector with a hint of sarcasm, pointing to a young Mexican in a black Elvis jump suit, hair pulled back in a braid.  “Our intrepid moon-lighting hunting guide.” Hector acted annoyed with Gabriel.

Habitually, Rocky always looked behind him to check his back.  As he did so now, his gaze locked on a young blond. He guessed she stood over six feet – large breasts, late teens and trim.  Must be Hector’s new find.  Rocky had never seen her before.

With a nonchalant twist of her head, she shook her hair, which cascaded in a halo of blond ringlets.  A leather headband lay below her hairline and disappeared back into curls. Light seemed to follow her, inviting attention.  She appeared larger than life.  Rocky guessed she had a spirit that subdued men and made her impossible to forget.  Unaware of being watched, she stared beyond the walls and drank tequila from the bottle.

Rocky nudged Hector and looked at the girl.

To get the rest, look up The In-Ko-Pah Spirit on Amazon Kindle.

The In-Ko-Pah Spirit Cover

TWISTED LOVE first pages.




       2013.  The pervasive wood smoke of Mexico City created an orange midday glow.  Death.  Its challenging presence rode hot thermal wavelets, making the ground quiver.

In the chorizo-flavored heat, Julietta Aguilar hurried along the west foundation of the El Templo Major, dark chestnut hair pulled back into a loose knot that kept time with her stride. Although native to Mexico like many in the dig crews, Julietta Aguilar was U.S. educated. That fact alone had built a wall separating her from locally educated archaeologists  – and from various regional perceptions and sensibilities. But she took these tensions in stride; her mind was focused on the unraveling of the secrets she now walked upon. twisted2

The majesty and scale of the temple where she stood absorbed her every waking moment.  If it meant digging seven days a week to become published, she would.  The Templo Mayor was her muse.

The structure sat on a plaza of flat irregular limestone pavers once tread by Cortez and Montezuma, now a pit fifty feet below the surface of modern Mexico City, eagerly occupied by her and others digging for knowledge and fame.  Around these excavated acres an aggregate of five centuries of civilization rose above her, framing the great hole with colonial and modern structures.

Excited by the prospect of a new discovery, Julietta clambered down eight wooden steps, under an awning and into a cavity littered with exposed bones. Sacrificial victims, the estimate was four hundred.  The scale of death she and her crews discovered continued to awe her.

Looking over the paved mall, its depths not yet explored, she wondered how many more bodies rested under the broad stone mosaic.  Often she envisioned the irregular stony slabs moving, and bony hands reaching through the dirt to pull their skeletal remains free to walk away.  Sometimes their primeval pain seemed to rise from the earth and travel up her body, numbing her senses.

Questions tumbled inside her:  Who were you?  Why did you end like this?


This place gives me an uncomfortable feeling.



DMCREEK2This area looks a little sinister doesn’t it? Plenty happened here in 1840 to the turn of the century. This was a place of several murders. Some were gruesome with the mark of the beast. This place was on a Butterfield Stage route. The stage stopped here to rest passengers on their way north to Los Angeles or south on it’s way to Yuma. The horses were rested and passengers were able to sit in the shade and rest themselves from the body aching coach ride. Passengers could snack if they had food and refresh themselves from two spring fed pools. DMCREEK.

One day refreshments were cut short when a body was found in one of the pools. This occurred more than once and bodies were male and female, some mangled and torn as if killed by an animal. But what kind of animal? Several people at the pools had seen a strange frightening creature that was a mix between a gorilla and a human. They called it a man-animal. Some say it was a sasquatch.


Happy travels. My name is Wally Runnels and I write Border Pulp.


There’s always work in Mexico.


BORDER PULP NEWS: There’s work in Mexico if you wanna be a coyote.

 Our economy is doing okay but there’s also plenty of work in Mexico. Coyotes are staying busy. Recent research indicates that three out of five coyotes are American citizens. They are American males of Hispanic descent. They get their clients from a Mexican social network and make schedules based on final destinations.  MIGRANTS

Just think twice about starting your own coyote business. You’ll have to payoff some nasty people and get an approval from the local cartel. Most smuggling groups are part of a cartel or a syndicate that pays a cartel to stay in business.

An American coyote is paid higher wages than their Mexican counterparts. Last year they got $850 per head per migrant that they get across. Mexican Coyotes will get about $300 less. Central American coyotes will make only $150.

Normally one coyote will take three people and maintain them while they guide them across the border. Payment can be made in installments. Final payments are made upon arrival at the agreed destination. Migrants bound for California will have to pay in advance, and can pay up to $10,000 a head with no guarantees.

Still wanna be a coyote? Buena Suerte.

We’ll pass Rocky’s house on the way to Jacumba.


Okay, so we’re on our way to Jacumba.  Yeah, we’ll pass Rocky’s house, but he’s not there. He’s in Mexico City doing some work for a cartel.

In the 1800’s there was no border fence. You could look south and not see anything but open country. You’d need a map and a transit to find the international line, or you might step on a lead marker with a brass plate imbedded in it saying you were standing on the border.

In those days the only road through Jacumba was dirt. It was a wagon road used by local ranchers or the military. There was a cavalry post a few miles away. Eventually the track became a stagecoach road for the Butterfield Line and others going to and from San Diego.

Old Highway 80 built in 1932 wanders over and around the original dirt stage road that passed through Jacumba in those early days.

The photo shows a part of the road about fifty feet south of Old 80. A small bridge between rocks, built out of post and lintel slabs acts as a drain and flattens out the roadway, although faint still runs over it.  OLD STAGE ROAD

The Pierce Arrow and Locomobile touring cars of the Pickwick Motor Stage line operating from El Centro and San Diego in 1911 used this road.

If you were traveling from San Diego you could purchase tickets in Bill’s Cigar Store, and in El Centro it was Brad’s Smoke Shop. It was mainly a male crowd that traveled on the line, wearing hats and suits. Most sat inside the vehicle while others had to ride outside on the toolbox.

Dynamite was carried to clear rockslides and the driver carried a firearm for bandits. There were lots of wicked people running around in those days, a trend that continues. MOON NIGHT copy

Locals who live around the old trail tell me that on a moonlit night they can sometimes hear the ghostly grumble, rattle and growl of an old rig downshifting to take the grade into El Centro or San Diego. Its dim lights flickering over the bumpy terrain, the driver, a skeletal figure wears a uniform cap and coat.


THERE’S A LOT OF INTERESTING PLACES TO SEE ON THE WAY TO BANKHEAD SPRINGS. My pal Rocky lives there in a little cabin. He’s always around except when he’s working for a cartel or the CIA. So I wouldn’t stop there, you might piss him off. Rocky


Jacumba's Area 51

Jacumba’s Area 51

But here’s one. Starship Street is a private road; so don’t drive it without permission. Locals look at it like it’s Area 51. It’s not too far from the Mexican/American Border. It will lead you to a gathering place used by the Unarius Society. The headquarters are based in El Cajon, California. Founded by Ernest and Ruth Norman in 1954, who believed the earth would be visited by Extraterrestrials in 2001. The site at the end of Starship Street is a place where the Unarius folks meet and meditate.

The society believes that the study of space and its mysteries can enlighten the soul and human spirit. Ernest and Ruth created a program called the Intergalactic Student Exchange. They had dreams.

Dreams draw people to this area.  Dreams are wonderful things to have.

My name’s Wally Runnels and I write Border Pulp.






DKARMABorder Pulp, that’s what I call the stuff I write; a kind of border town sinister. It’s relaxing, except for the dreams you’ll have after you read it. Think of it as the noir film, A Touch of Evil, but in color. My protagonists and villains live around Mexican/American Border towns. Crooked cops, hit men, drug runners, brothel owners, and beautiful women come and go offering glimpses of a dangerous culture. The lucky losers just get shot, because along this boundry line there are harder ways to go down.

Happy reading. My name is Wally Runnels and I write Border Pulp.




A month ago my brother and I went out to the Anza Borrego Desert.HOY-IMIGRANTWe stopped at a place not far from the old Butterfield stage line and the equally ancient Immigrant Trail used by the gold rush miners on their way to riches. This place is called Desert Palms. Old Indian trails from the mountain behind lead into this oasis. The trails are hundreds of years old. The palms are watered by a constant running natural spring. Animal signs are all over  the site. The weather was in the high seventies, perfect that day.PALM SPRINGS

Juan Bautista de Anza passed by a little to the north through Coyote Wash. He was on his way to the mission San Fernando in the valley of the same name. He made two trips, one in 1774 and 1775.  On his first trip he left San Fernando and met Fra Junipero Serra in Carmel. When he made his second journey he guided settlers on the same route and scouted a great inland harbor and founded San Francisco.

Yeah, we’re up and pitching.

Please take a look at The In-Ko-Pah Spirit. Look at that guy on the cover, sweet. Now isn’t that somebody you could love?The In-Ko-Pah Spirit Cover