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The municipality of Haute Montagne stood at the junction of the Fresnel River and the railway, its water tower and its huge granaries erupting from the prairie like blocks of basalt from an eroded sea floor. Once, not long ago, the town had aspired to be a city.
It still had a little of city in it. There was the main street, Lawson Spur, or simply The Spur, which was blacktopped and lined with concrete sidewalks dazzlingly white in the noonday sun, which boasted the big Bingham's Hardware Store and J. C. Penney's and Times Square Lunch, all fronted in dusty