“Godsmack, Part I, The Mother Earth” by Josie Peterson
As the story opens, Yahn Marynugh, a forty-something gay accountant living in Philadelphia, is on the verge of a serious long-lasting nervous breakdown. The continuous overwork and corruption he’s had to face in his career have also led to his debilitating diagnosis of environmental illness.
Sick, exhausted, and hospitalized, Yahn must now run from an outfit in the criminal underworld. These gangsters want Yahn to go to work for them right after they murdered one of his clients, whose company Yahn was auditing. Upon discharge from the hospital, Yahn was vehemently told by his best friend, radical biochemist George Loo, to move away free of crooks, pressure, and environmental pollutants and begin his life again.
Reluctantly, Yahn finds an advertisement for an organic farm in Deer County, northeastern Pennsylvania. Yahn visits the property and buys the farm. Unknown to Yahn is that this farm was previously commandeered by the very same outfit chasing him and forcing the previous owners to flee.
Yahn moves from Philadelphia to the fallow farm and meets with a couple of wise and eccentric journeyman farmers, Brian Fitzgerald and Maxine Geronimo, who together help him learn to plant, propagate, and grow healthy organic crops. Yahn also befriends his neighbor, widower Joshua Pump, a neophyte farmer with similar values and brave naivety to Yahn. These wounded oddballs bond in a shared reverence for Mother Earth and her natural wonders. Soon, George Loo joins them after he gets indicted in Philadelphia for practicing medicine without a license. Yahn eventually expresses his romantic feelings to George who is open to experimenting with his sexuality.
The outfit has its own set of dramas as they establish a heroin-making “garage” on an old historic property in Deer County near Yahn’s farm. The outfit is led by career sociopath, Nicky Scaffola, with direct ties to La Cosa Nostra in Sicily. His first lieutenant, lover, and henchman — a Scot, Cassius McFarland, is “den mother” for Nicky and the remaining crook, Sal Bryant, a tough, psychotic Englishman, who is having a tumultuous affair with gang lackey and diabetic Dominick Vorga. Dominick is a brave African American, working undercover for the DEA. The other member, Dominick’s adopted father, John Vorga, wants nothing more than to get out from under this gang after being in for the past 40 years of his life. Habib Ghita, a Pakistani Interpol agent who endured forced hypnotic trauma to act as a black ops agent for his government, is the final low-level member who must endure Nicky’s evil and ensure the heroin never gets sold.
Nicky keeps sending John Vorga to entice and threaten Yahn to join the gang and fix their books as the gang slides into bankruptcy from the competition and money-man Sal’s increasing blindness. Yahn does not succumb until he’s sure that local law enforcement, Sherrif Tom Kemp, who has a long and storied history with Nicky Scaffola, takes down these crooks.
Yahn reveals to the gang they are sunk financially after he examines their books. Habib secretly confiscates the cache of freshly made heroin and destroys it in icy Russian waters with himself in tow. Nicky ingests what remains of the heroin he ordered stashed at Yahn’s farm after he learns of his demise.