Izzy here, with my fanfic, "The Preacher's Story", a fic based on the Li'l Abner musical(I'm afraid I don't know enough about the original strip). By the way, homophobes, enjoy this while you can, this will be one of the few musical/play fandoms where I'm not doing slash.(and even here the Polecat/Joe dynamic might inspire me someday. I'm just not doing it yet) The original characters are owned by Al Capp, and the musical claims(well, at least my libretto does) to be the property of Tams-Witmark.

The Preacher's Story

By Izzy

Mah name is Samuel Jones, tho' most people call me Marryin' Sam. Thass okay with me. Ah druther not people pay attention to my last name, or rather, the family attached to it.

Ah wuz third in a family a' three. Mah sister Stupefyin' wuz five years older, and mah brother Available wuz seven years older. We wuz yo' ordinary Dogpatch family: lazy, poor, and good people. Well, all except fo' Available. He always wanted to git his hands on money, and other things. Mammy Jones says wuz his fault Stupefyin' never spoke, but Ah never did hear the whole story to that.

However she ended up dumb, Stupefyin' wuz very miserable about it. And she jus' could not deal with people. Whenever any of 'em were 'round her; you'd see her stiff 'an scared.

Then at age six she barricaded herself in the family cabin and refused to come out. For two years she never went outside. She finally ventured outside again at age eight. She ran into a group a' boys and froze them dead in their tracks. Same thing happened when she met any male not directly related to her.

Well, once he realized that he could freeze people dead in their tracks with his sister's help, Available took her with him ev'rywhere, concealed behind a shower curtain he got from somewhere just fo' the purpose, until he needed her. He even rented her out to other people, like she wuz some sort a' slave. Stupefyin' wuz so insecure, she let him do it. And she still duz now, over twen'ny-five year later.

During her long stay in our cabin, Stupefyin' became the first person Ah could recognize as a toddler, even befo' Mammy Jones. Ah think Ah'm the only person in the wo'ld who knew how insecure she really wuz, and is. And bein' used by her own brother, without so much as a "thank you", didn't help, and still don't.

Meanwhile, mah brother barely knew me, nor Ah him. All Ah knew was he was takin' mah sister away from me, and makin' her unhappy. Ah began to hate him. Things between us are still strained.

When Ah wuz twelve, Available moved out, and took Stupefyin' with him. Ah begged her to refuse, but he won her over. Ah was alone again.

Ah found a friend in the form of Moonbeam McSwine. She wuz orphaned at age four, left nothin' by her parents 'cept a herd a' pigs. The wives a' Dogpatch taught her as much as they could, but at the time our friendship began, she obeyed no rules 'cept her own. She slept with her pigs, and it did take me some time to git used to her smell.

Mah brother had one influence on me: he had a great aversion towards marriage, and he passed it on to me. When Ah wuz old enough for marriage, Pappy Jones took me aside and told me since mah brother had never so much as run on Sadie Hawkins Day, Ah'd better have a good reason if Ah didn't want to. Ah asked anyone Ah could for advice, and Moonbeam thought a' somethin': "Don't the person who duz all the marriages never marry himself?"

And so Ah became Marryin' Sam, announcing shortly before Sadie Hawkins Day mah two-dollar, four-dollar, and eight-dollar weddings. Since noone in Dogpatch knew anythin' about who became a preacher, they accepted me as one. But since marriages only occur once a year in Dogpatch, Ah spent much a' mah time traveling to other villiages. But Ah always made it a point to drop in on Dogpatch, and Ah never missed Sadie Hawkins Day.

Ah kept up mah friendship with Moonbeam McSwine, since Ah was the only human who was willing to stand downwind a' her. Despite this, I expected her to catch a' guy as quick as she could catch a runaway pig, on Sadie Hawkins Day, whether he wanted her to or not. But she never did. Year after year, I was certain she wuz fast enough, she wuz gonna do it. And then I heard she actually had cornered a guy several times, but she'd always let 'em get away. She stopped runnin' the race five years ago. Ah guess she didn't want marriage, that she preferred t'spend her life with her pigs.

Ah'm thirty years old now. Ah'm returning to Dogpatch fo' Sadie Hawkins Day. I hear Earthquake McGoon is returnin' to. Ah wonder if he wants a wife, and if so, who?

I wonder if Moonbeam will decide to run this year anyway. She seems happy with just pigs, but sometimes Ah think maybe she should have a husband. Maybe if Ah wasn't the person who married people Ah'd-no, wait, did Ah just think that? No Ah did not! AH DID NOT!