WritersBeat.com
 

Go Back   WritersBeat.com > Write Here > Fiction

Fiction Novel excerpts, short stories, etc.


Highwaymen 2 of 3

Reply
 
Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 01-08-2013, 09:57 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Icon1 Highwaymen 2 of 3


Highwaymen 1 at: http://www.writersbeat.com/showthread.php?t=43432


Joseph settled into the drafty log structure after a thorough going over with broom and shovel. The sand and debris had accumulated three inches thick in the corners and edges due to its open state of neglect. Furnishings were few; a couple of reed-seated side chairs and a frontier bench, but only one item remaining was a necessity, the broad topped cast iron stove, centrally located in the living space.

The wind whistled through cracks between the logs since virtually all of the chinking had crumbled to dust. The place was going to require some extensive work but the bones were solid and the cedar shake roof was at least passable.

After unhitching the wagon and horses, McKenna took the opportunity to walk the property and familiarize himself further with this new adventure. There was a well house out front with a frayed rope and bucket for retrieval. Joseph hoisted the wooden pail and gave it a whiff to see if the water was potable. Clean, clear and cool, he gladly took a sip then set out to lead the horses down to the creek to slack their thirst.

Running alongside the steady flowing stream, Joseph could see clear indications of attempts at cultivation. Most of the rows had faded with the incessant breeze but patches of wild wheat, corn and melon still remained though parched from lack of irrigation.

McKenna shook his head. He could only imagine how the previous tenant likely approached the task of watering his crops, standing ankle deep in the creek tossing or passing buckets one by one to feed the needy plant life. The method might have been effective in less arid climes, but the high plains had a ceaseless thirst, unquenched by spotty efforts such as that.

Joseph’s mechanically minded eye easily determined the remedy; a sixty-foot trench, controlled by a sluice gate, could have connected the field via the natural contours simply by digging an inlet at the creek’s higher elevation, one hundred yards to the north. One glance toward the family graveyard caused Joseph to grieve for their loss, likely preventable by this one simple act of engineering.

He returned to the cabin, determined to redeem this ranch and bring life and a living back to the dusty plateau.



**********^**********



The days passed quickly as McKenna busied himself with the many tasks necessary in the reclamation of a once treasured symbol of promise. Mixing clay with dried straw, the drafty gaps in the walls were sealed. He replaced the cracked, leather strap-hinges of the front door with factory forged pin swingers, a product of his former venue. Within one week, the old homestead became downright presentable!

The woodstove kept him warm and fed though the fare was sorely lacking in diversity. Snaring rabbit was a near effortless pursuit as their abundance approached the status of infestation. After several meals of the gamey rodent, questionable providence afforded Joseph the opportunity to sample a dime novel delicacy, high plains rattlesnake!

A three-footer had slithered out from under one of the loose floorboards to McKenna’s great trepidation. A quick sprint to retrieve the makeshift snake-snare from the barn rewarded the determined settler with a writhing mass of fresh reptilian cuisine. Split and stripped, he tacked the menacing skin to the timbers of the front porch then roasted the grayish chunks of meat.

McKenna noted the flavor to be that of “lamp-oily fish”, decidedly destined to join the growing ranks of the inedible in this new environment.

Though his supply of mealtime staples was more than adequate, fresh meat would not keep without preparation. Having stabilized the sod mound and shuttered the window openings, Joseph outfitted the former shelter, repurposed to become a big game smokehouse.

With his belly craving more civilized substance, McKenna prepared to saddle up and hunt the local antelope, spotted grazing in profusion throughout the valley. With his rifle in hand and Navy Colt at his hip, he grabbed his hat on his way out to the corral.

Joseph smiled as he glanced at the hat’s recent ornamentation, a belt made from the hide of the ill-fated rattler. Hating to waste the decorative band, he’d pondered what possible use he could employ, then in a moment of inspiration, it came to him. He’d remembered the tale of the Ouroborus, the ancient symbol for perpetuity, depicted by a ravenous snake eating its own tail. With the head as buckle and the fangs as clasps, Joseph declared his determination to carry on in this new land with every tip of his hat.



**********^**********



Saddled and mounted, he turned his robust draught horse toward the trail to begin running the ridge overlooking the valley below.

Two hours into riding the range, Joseph halted the beast to crane his ear and determine the source of a noise uncommon in this empty vastness, human voices. In possession of a good sense of reckoning, McKenna located the area, confirmed by the sight of movement in the distance along the valley trail.

He could make out no words but the tempo of their utterance suggested definite indications of distress. Descending the ridgeline, he wove his way through the brush and spotty evergreens in the hopes of getting a better look before approaching them openly. Many a settler became skittish on the open road, oftentimes shooting long before the asking of questions.

Dismounting discreetly, McKenna tied off his horse and proceeded on foot. Occasionally catching brief phrases, he was close enough to make distinctions between the voices; several males and at least one female … whimpering.

One of the men blurted out pained protests while the others seemed to sound amused, apparently quite pleased with themselves. At this, Joseph took to crawling the rest of the way, inching toward the ridge of the gully where the troubling drama was unfolding.

It was then that he was able to grasp the severity of the situation, three men accosting a family of likely travelers, settlers yet to arrive at their destination. One held sway over the other two with pistol in hand, directing their actions.

A heavy-set oaf draped in a threadbare overcoat was given the task of subduing the father with a boot planted in his lower back, clutching his hair and forcing him to watch. The other appeared to be in his younger twenties, pinning the woman to the ground on her back with an outstretched arm.

Joseph could not yet make out their faces as all three had their backs toward him, but the voice of the leader seemed vaguely familiar. Given the high sign by the man with the pistol, the dirty-blond molester proudly brandished a large hunting knife, gleaming in the midday sun.

The young cretin turned his head and smiled. It was then that McKenna got his first glimpse of recognition; it was Josiah Tucker’s loathsome associate! Identifying the other two became a simple matter of deduction.

Joseph anxiously searched for a means to defuse the situation. It became obvious what was next on their horrid agenda, a heinous violation of body and mind for the woman and indelibly tortured memories for those forced to witness the tragedy. McKenna had to act, and do so quickly.

With hoots of encouragement from his enthusiastic companions, the odious rascal positioned himself between the woman’s knees then guided the glinting blade between the house dress and her violently trembling skin, the tip emerging at the bodice. Turning the edge upward, he pulled the knife slowly back toward him as the fabric parted effortlessly to either side. The appearance was that of a man gutting a fish from the inside!

The husband bellowed in weeping anguish while his children sobbed uncontrollably in the back of their wagon, too small to warrant restraint. Joseph grit his teeth, desperate for an opportunity to intervene without acting out of sheer rashness.

Nothing came to him guaranteeing success with surety so McKenna would have to rely on his grim determination and firm standing on moral high ground. He grabbed a nearby stone and hurled it high and long towards the ridge beyond the trio, distracting their attentions until he could get in position. When all had turned, he quietly raced down the embankment, stopping at a place of perfect advantage in the flat behind them.

“Hold your place, the lot of you!!”

The men froze, slowly turning only their heads. McKenna had managed to maintain a clear line of fire for all three, avoiding the endangerment of their captives. Tucker’s pistol arm was in plain view, pointed toward the gully floor, while the large one eyed his shotgun, leaning against a rock behind him, just out of reach.

“Easy feller” Tucker said calmly. “We ain’t got no truck with you or yours, we were just funnin’ these folks.”

Joseph glanced at the face of each family member, fraught with sheer terror.

Funnin’!?” McKenna struggled to suppress his rage. “I don’t see none of them laughing!! Drop the six-gun to the ground and put your hands on top of your heads!”

Tucker shook his head, smiling in cocky swagger. “And if I don’t …?” Without moving his arm, he discreetly cocked the pistol, ready to fire.

The stalwart settler had had enough; he aimed his repeater just above Josiah’s elbow. Mimicking Tucker’s Kentucky twang, he gave his response.

Suit yer self …”

McKenna exhaled softly then pulled the trigger. The thunderous report resounded off the canyon walls, followed closely by the tortured howl of the wretched leader’s cries of agony. The bullet shattered the bones of his upper arm, exiting the front and taking a sizable chunk in passing. Tucker’s Colt fell to the desert floor with a clatter.

Joseph shifted his attention to the burly associate, too dumbstruck to venture an attempted challenge. He reluctantly raised his hands in compliance.

Bold as brass but duller than a burnt wick, the wall-eyed delinquent took this as his opportunity to retrieve the knife from his belt, now draped around his ankles.

“Boy, I’d just as soon spare a bullet and take out your good eye, now pull the pig sticker out by the fingertips and toss it to the side!”

Defiant but undeniably defeated, he did as instructed.

“And for God’s sake …pull your pants up!!”

McKenna gathered the uninjured highwaymen to either side of their wailing captain, positioning them on their knees prone and vulnerable. Once they were contained, his focus shifted to the victims.

He motioned to one of the girls. “Young lady, fetch me a blanket and bring it to your mama …quickly!”

The two of them leapt from the wagon, running to the troubled woman’s aid, draping her with the woolen cover.

With a watchful eye on the kneeling criminals, Joseph hurried to free the husband. “What’s your name sir?” he asked.

The man kept his attentions fixed on the young blond scoundrel as McKenna undid his bindings. “Name’s Stewart … Isaiah Stewart.” He shook McKenna’s hand despite the deep chafing of his wrists.

“Joseph McKenna, go see to your wife and we’ll talk later.”

With the innocent freed, Joseph set about trussing the three offenders with rawhide strips tied behind their backs, taking no small measure of delight at their discomfort.

Isaiah enveloped his wife with a tearful embrace then carefully checked to see if she’d sustained injury. He consoled his daughters, dropping to one knee and wiping their cheeks with his sleeve. Giving them assurance and comfort, he sent the three of them to rest in the wagon while he and this kind stranger dealt with the vile trio.

With each step closer to the repulsive band, Stewart’s sorrow abated, replaced by a mounting sense of rage. While Joseph scanned the terrain to locate their horses, Isaiah paced before the three, stomping the dust with each footfall.

“Mr. McKenna …” he said. “Could I trouble you for your revolver?”

Tucker and his subordinates stirred at the request, exchanging anxious glances and muttering amongst themselves.

“I have a right … to justice!” Stewart added sternly.

Joseph sighed as he joined the despairing settler. “True enough Isaiah, I might be considering the same in your place but are you sure you want to go down that road?”

At this the three began to protest, fidgeting desperately in their bonds. Seemingly incapable of self-restraint, the wall-eyed masher blurted out their paltry defense.

“Hey! We didn’t hurt nobody!!”

The two men standing turned in unison, filled with disgust. Joseph came alongside the kneeling creature and poked him hard in the side of his temple with the business end of his rifle, drawing blood.

“I think the lady might beg to differ, and what about these two?” He motioned toward their precious daughters. “They’re bearing scars that may never heal! Now shut your yap or I’ll shut it for you!”

See what I mean!?” Stewart roared. “This deviant’s right to live is forfeit and I’ve been tasked to take it!!”

“Have you …? And who has given you this grievous assignment, your wife …your little girls? Or is it God himself!?”

McKenna knew that few would deny the distraught husband’s entitlement to redeem his wife’s honor. He also realized that the alternative was also exclusively in the troubled man’s hands, the act of mercy.

With great reluctance, Joseph drew the Navy Colt from its holster and handed it to the grimly determined man.

Realizing that Stewart’s vengeful attentions were focused solely on their unfortunate associate, Tucker and his portly partner shifted in the gravelly floor, leaning away from their colleague as he began kicking his feet in an attempt to retreat.

Joseph took to binding Tucker’s arm with his folded bandana as Isaiah leveled the weighty pistol with both hands. In a feeble attempt to intervene, Tucker whispered pleas of justification in McKenna’s ear for the boy, claiming mental deficiency and the like. Joseph was oblivious, instead, calmly giving instruction.

“Mr. Stewart …you’ll first need to pull the hammer back.”

Isaiah complied

His hands began to tremble, so much so that Joseph wondered whether he might fire inadvertently.”Mr. Stewart …Isaiah, look at your wife and children. They’ve seen far more than anyone should have to, are you going to add this to their memory?”

McKenna’s words struck the settler’s fractured soul, wondering whether his motivations were driven solely by his own sense of indignation. He wrestled internally with his thoughts, shaking his head as if to cast out the undesirable, alternating his expression from rage to self-loathing despair.

The quivering youth winced at each facial display, certain that his death would come with the next grimace. In moments, the spectacle dissipated, leaving Isaiah bearing a countenance of ambivalent resignation.

Stewart took in several deep breaths, calming his nerves. With tears in his eyes, he slowly exhaled then gently pulled the trigger … carefully returning the hammer to the position of safety with his thumb.

McKenna heaved a sigh of relief, as did the others, the flinching monster would live another day and this father of two would not have to bear vengeful blood on his hands.



**********^**********



Stewart’s wife Sarah recovered as best as she could, washing her face and retrieving a new dress from the wagon. She wanted to rip the old one into shreds, tossing the tattered remnants into the river as if to cast it out of her recollection but Joseph insisted that she refrain, preferring to preserve it as evidence in the rogues’ trial.

“Isaiah, you’ll have to help me bring these three to town to levy charges, but the women can move on to my cabin until we return.”

Sarah nodded in agreement, cupping her husband’s face in her hands with a tearful kiss. The girls hugged their Papa by the waist then joined their mother at the buckboard and were off.

Having sent the women on their way, the men rejoined the disreputable trio, preparing their horses for the wearisome ride back to La Junta.

Jesse Browning, the blond violator, gave little resistance, apparently still ruminating over his near death experience. Tucker, on the other hand, took a more diplomatic approach, offering gushing apologies absent of discernible sincerity, peppered with promises of copious financial compensation. Farley Chapman, the hefty “jailer”, maintained his silence with wide-eyed obsession, anxiously preoccupied with his newfound circumstance of captivity.

Joseph strung their horses’ leaders together at the bridles to insure that none of them could break from the train individually, with the head charger tied to Joseph’s saddle horn. Bound behind their backs, the three were incapable of disengaging the leaders and powerless to resist McKenna’s guidance out of the valley and on to La Junta.



**********^**********



Captain Ferguson gladly received Tucker and his cadre of criminals in the post brig, sequestering them in the lap of gray bar luxury. Their collection of goods stored by the depot were dutifully catalogued and secured in the impound livery behind the barracks for safe keeping while they awaited trial.

“Mr. Stewart” the Captain said. “First, I’d like to extend my deepest sympathies for what you and your family have endured. I promise you that we will do our utmost to bring these men to justice.”

Isaiah nodded.

“But I must tell you that I cannot guarantee that it will be to your satisfaction. The most we can expect, given yours and Mr. McKenna’s testimonies, are charges of assault, possibly malicious detainment. The sentence for such infractions likely will not exceed six months, perhaps eight at most.”

Stewart groaned. He removed his hat, slapping it against his thigh, running his fingers through his hair. “And then they’ll be back at their table, prowling for the next victim!?”

Ferguson sighed, “Not if I can help it sir, but yes … they’ll be free.”

Isaiah and Joseph shared a glance; both wondering at the wisdom of their merciful generosity. Thanking the good captain, the pair mounted up for the long ride “home.”

Isaiah and company would have to remain in the region until the circuit judge arrived at the outpost to litigate Tucker’s men, just under two weeks from that day. Joseph graciously offered his humble homestead to the young family until their roles in this tragic drama were ultimately fulfilled.


"Highwaymen 3 - conclusion" to be posted in 72 hours OR read it now at surrealisticpillowtalk.blogspot.com

__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation

Last edited by AbdulaOblongata; 01-14-2013 at 04:24 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 01-09-2013, 01:25 AM
MightieMousie's Avatar
MightieMousie (Offline)
Dedicated Writer
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 200
Thanks: 12
Thanks 36
Default

Another excellent read! Great pacing and description, as well as dialogue and content.

I wonder if you meant to use 'slake' instead of 'slack' at the end of the third paragraph.

lol FYI... I would have moved the kids out of viewing range, then looked for a short rope and a tall tree. :-)
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 01-09-2013, 05:44 AM
buckethead (Offline)
Typist
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 71
Thanks: 8
Thanks 31
Default

This piece flows very well, certainly a great read. I am excited to read the final part!
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 01-09-2013, 11:13 AM
Andy Mitchell (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 495
Thanks: 268
Thanks 119
Default

This is good work here, Abdula. It has a fast pace, which was like part one so I am glad that you kept it at that pace. The characters were very much real. And of course there was darkness.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 01-09-2013, 02:17 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Mightie,
Good to see you again!
My buddy Jim said the same thing about the kids and the rope and Rooster hated to tell me that "he told me so" but ...

We shall see!

Just a quick note on "slack". The Great and Powerful Encarta, council to all that aspire to embrace the title of author, assures me that slack is interchangeable with slake as well as slaken. Who am I that I should refute his mighty declaration!?

Sorry ... got carried away. You ought to see some of my emails!

Will be reading you later,
Abdula


Buckethead,
Thanks for sticking with me and Joseph as we work this new life to its conclusion. I'm posting Hwy3 late Friday evening which may not be a great tactical move but 72 hours waits for no man. Some say that the weekend is a bad time to post but well ... there it is.

Talk to you soon,
Abdula


Andy,
Looks like you nailed it.
I always debate my presentation of dark material so I hope I managed to achieve balance in this scene. I know that you explore a lot of the harsher aspects of this life but I see that you clearly try to maintain a positive direction, at least by the time the story reaches its close.

Keep up your own pace as well!
Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 01-09-2013, 02:30 PM
MightieMousie's Avatar
MightieMousie (Offline)
Dedicated Writer
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 200
Thanks: 12
Thanks 36
Default

Well hell. I was let down by Merriam-Webster! I had thought 'slake' when I read it, then afterwards I looked up 'slack' to be sure there was not some other synonymous meaning. Serves me right for trusting Merriam-Webster.
Now I wish I had my unabridged encyclopedic dictionary with me, I am curious to see if it is in there properly.
Naturally Wiktionary has it right.

Edited: Is it Friday yet?!? Can't we pretend it's Friday? I won't tell. Promise!

Last edited by MightieMousie; 01-09-2013 at 04:13 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 01-09-2013, 09:37 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Mightie,
Patience grasshopper ...
I got called by Emerald on my use of "fickled" in another story. He was right in that fickle was more proper but I found that fickled, (commonly used in the States) was technically acceptible but probably not encouraged. The source provided was not as lofty in stature as the Great and Noble Encarta but a handy loophole called the Urban Dictionary.

Apologies Emerald, I will repent!

Nice Work on Tinmen by the way,
Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 01-10-2013, 12:49 AM
Rooster Smith (Offline)
Homer's Odyssey Was Nothing
Official Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 1,090
Thanks: 38
Thanks 212
Default

Originally Posted by MightieMousie View Post
Another excellent read! Great pacing and description, as well as dialogue and content.

I wonder if you meant to use 'slake' instead of 'slack' at the end of the third paragraph.

lol FYI... I would have moved the kids out of viewing range, then looked for a short rope and a tall tree. :-)
Thank you! That's what I said! The shorter the rope and taller the tree ... the better.



fANTASTIC WORK HERE, 'DULA!

THE BIG STREAGNTH HERE WAS IN THE NARRATION. VERY WELL DONE.

THE WORDING!

ALSO GOT A GREAT VIEW FOR HOW THE CHARACTERS TALK, ESPECIALLY THE MAIN GO, BIG JOE. JOE ZILLA.

JOESPHSTIEN!

JUST A GOOD READ, MAN, REALLY GOOD.

THE GUN THING, A LOT BETTER THAN AFTER TIME, LOVED THE WHOLE JOURNY OF THE BULLET, GOING THROUGH THE BONE AND SUCH, NEVER WOULD HAVE THOUGHT TO DO THAT.

HERE'S TEH REVEIW ...




Joseph settled into the drafty log structure after a thorough going over with broom and shovel. The sand and debris had accumulated three inches thick in the corners and edges due to its open state of neglect. Furnishings were few; a couple of reed-seated side chairs and a frontier bench, but only one item remaining was a necessity, the broad topped cast iron stove, centrally located in the living space.

WOW. CENTRALLY LOCATED? CRAZY. THINGS WERE DIFFERENT THEN.




He returned to the cabin, determined to redeem this ranch and bring life and a living back to the dusty plateau.

YEAH! FUCK YOU MOTHER EARTH! WE'RE GONNA BUILD HERE! THERE'S GONNA BE A STARBUCKS RIGHT WHERE I'M STANDING ONE DAY!




**********^**********







Joseph smiled as he glanced at the hat’s recent ornamentation, a belt made from the hide of the ill-fated rattler. Hating to waste the decorative band, he’d pondered what possible use he could employ, then in a moment of inspiration, it came to him. He’d remembered the tale of the Ouroborus, the ancient symbol for perpetuity, depicted by a ravenous snake eating its own tail. With the head as buckle and the fangs as clasps, Joseph declared his determination to carry on in this new land with every tip of his hat.

YOU GOTTA LOVE GUY WHO UNDERSTANDS FLARE!

THAT'S THE CLOSEST THING TO JAZZ HANDS THEY HAD IN THOSE DAYS ...









  1. With hoots of encouragement from his enthusiastic companions, the odious rascal positioned himself between the woman’s knees then guided the glinting blade between the house dress and her violently trembling skin, the tip emerging at the bodice. Turning the edge upward, he pulled the knife slowly back toward him as the fabric parted effortlessly to either side. The appearance was that of a man gutting a fish from the inside!

    ODIOUS RASCAL IS THE NAME OF MY ".38 SPECIAL" COVER BAND.



    Bold as brass but duller than a burnt wick, the wall-eyed delinquent took this as his opportunity to retrieve the knife from his belt, now draped around his ankles.

    DULLER THAN A BURNT WICK.

    AWESOME WRITING. BOLD AS BRASS TOO. YOU GOT A NAME FOR THOSE? i'D LOVE TO GET A LIST OF THEM IN MY VERBAL ARSENAL.

    MY FAVORITE IS, "SO HUNGRY I CAN EAT THE BALLS OFF A LOW FLYING DUCK."

    ALTHOUGHT I GUESS THAT'S THAT'S NOT THE SAME THING.

    THEY'RE BOTH GOOD.




    Joseph sighed as he joined the despairing settler. “True enough Isaiah, I might be considering the same in your place but are you sure you want to go down that road?”

    YEP.




    McKenna knew that few would deny the distraught husband’s entitlement to redeem his wife’s honor. He also realized that the alternative was also exclusively in the troubled man’s hands, the act of mercy.

    TAKE THE TIME HERE TO SAY, THIS IS A REALLY WELL NARRATED PIECE.





    “Mr. Stewart …you’ll first need to pull the hammer back.” Isaiah complied

    NOT A BID DEAL, OR NECCESSARY, BUT I WOULD HAVE PUT "ISAIAH COMPLIED" IN IT'S OWN PARAGRAPH. DRAMATIC EFFECT, IN MY OPINION.


    His hands began to tremble, so much so that Joseph wondered whether he might fire inadvertently.”Mr. Stewart …Isaiah, look at your wife and children. They’ve seen far more than anyone should have to, are you going to add this to their memory?”

    SOMEBODY VOTES DEMOCRAT!

    COME ON MAN! THIS IS A GOOD MEMORY! THIS IS DISNEY LAND TIMES TEN!





    “Isaiah, you’ll have to help me bring these three to town to levy charges, but the women can move on to my cabin until we return.”

    THAT'S A LOT OF WORK MAN, WHY NOT JUST CALL THE COPS?

    ...

    OH RIGHT ...




    “But I must tell you that I cannot guarantee that it will be to your satisfaction. The most we can expect, given yours and Mr. McKenna’s testimonies, are charges of assault, possibly malicious detainment. The sentence for such infractions likely will not exceed six months, perhaps eight at most.”


    Stewart groaned. He removed his hat, slapping it against his thigh, running his fingers through his hair. “And then they’ll be back at their table, prowling for the next victim!?”

    DON'T WANNA SAY I TOLD YOU SO ...

    BUT I TOLD YA SO ...


__________________
New Rule Guys!!! I can no longer remember all the names of people who commented on my work.
So if you got a piece out, private message me so I won't forget to give you a return critic.
I really wanna return the favor, and I feel like I'm forgetting people ...
Check out my blog:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 01-10-2013, 09:12 AM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Rooster,
I like the way these comments paste here in WB, maybe it's the white background.

Ya got me pegged with the terminology variations, my thesaurus was working overtime when I went to describe Tucker's yellow-toothed companion. Odious rascal, now that's a keeper!

I may have to re-read the last Creek to reinforce my memory of events but I'm really looking forward to seeing Eastwood and the Padres back in the limelight.

See you there,
Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 01-10-2013, 09:26 AM
MightieMousie's Avatar
MightieMousie (Offline)
Dedicated Writer
Official Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 200
Thanks: 12
Thanks 36
Default

Interesting. I have never heard 'fickled' used before. What piece was that in? I would like to read it.

Thank you for the compliment on Tinmen!

Oh and... is it Friday yet?

Can you tell that patience was never my strong suit?
I'm the kind that wants people to open their presents as soon as I buy and wrap them.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 01-10-2013, 10:44 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Mightie,
Like I say, it's borderline slang. In the 60's we had a show called Laugh In and a regular segment was known as the "Fickled Finger of Fate Award" for a quick example.

Anyway, the story is called "Service with a Smile" and it's probably on the second or third page by now. You can find it if you want by following the instructions in my signature. Click on my Avatar to get to my profile and then select "stats" then "started threads".

Hwy3 should be up around 22 hours from now. Hope to see you then.

Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 01-13-2013, 02:46 PM
jigalowjugs (Offline)
Intellectually Fertile
Official Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 168
Thanks: 15
Thanks 27
Default

This is really good abdula. I find the dialogue and charcters very believable.
Again i liked the action scene when Mckenna is rescuing the family and all that. I am also very impressed by your vast vocabulary range and find that i am almost jealous

I have got a little pettifog however,

He’d remembered the tale of the Ouroborus, the ancient symbol for perpetuity, depicted by a ravenous snake eating its own tail. With the head as buckle and the fangs as clasps, Joseph declared his determination to carry on in this new land with every tip of his hat.


How do you know that the snake is ravenous? maybe it is only a little hungry and so is just nibbling its tail for dessert.

This is seriously pernickety of me i know.

Just goes to show you have done such a good job of this, that this is all i can pick at.

Last edited by jigalowjugs; 01-13-2013 at 02:49 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 01-14-2013, 01:42 AM
Judith's Avatar
Judith (Offline)
Noteworthy
Official Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: South Africa
Posts: 302
Thanks: 149
Thanks 85
Default

Very nice, the main event brings everything together as you promised.

Joseph shifted his attention to the burly associate, too dumbstruck to venture an attempt.
This sentence is incomplete.
He consoled his daughters, dropping to one knee and wiping their cheeks with his sleeve.
I like this action from your character: What a good dad he is!
“I think the lady might beg to differ, and what about these two?” He motioned toward their precious daughters.
Too much.
Having sent the women on their way, the men rejoined the disreputable trio, preparing their horses for the wearisome ride back to La Junta.
Another example to illustrate what I mean by "too much". I am struggling to form a clear picture of your characters. Your mc is an educated man, I gather but the rest are not? The voice of the story is written in impeccable language with excellent use of vocabulary. Do you see that it clashes with frontier life? Either tone down your use of language or colour in the education of mc more. Hope I'm making sense, I'm in a terrible hurry.


See you on the upside,
Blessings
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jabulani Africa!
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 01-14-2013, 04:22 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Jigalow,
Nibbling huh ...
If I could just reach out and smack you ...
Thanks for stopping by and having so little to say, what is the old expression?
No news is good news?

Until next time,
Abdula


Judith,
I would have to disagree with you there on the language. My understanding of historical speech is that we've become less articulate since the industrial revolution, not more.

Even though this was the old west, it still took place during the Victorian era and if you've ever read prose from the period it's considerably thicker and richer than what I portrayed.

I don't know if you've ever seen the updated version of John Wayne's classic "True Grit" but the language they use sounds almost gooey with polysyllabic terminology, and this from a bunch of toothless cretins!

Again you found a sentence that I obsessed over in edit. I think its meaning is clear enough, the burly associate's too dumbstruck to attempt a challenge... CHECK YOU OUT JUDITH, just as I was formulating a response, I came up with a better (hopefully) alternative. I WILL EDIT IMMEDIATELY!

Good Call!

I'll see you soon,
Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 01-15-2013, 12:03 AM
Judith's Avatar
Judith (Offline)
Noteworthy
Official Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: South Africa
Posts: 302
Thanks: 149
Thanks 85
Default

Okay, you defend the dialogue well. Haven't seen 'True Grit' yet, I believe they're only advertising the trailer by us now.(!) I'm reminded of that other strange movie 'There will be Blood'.
I still have a problem with the voice of the story e.g.
Having sent the women on their way, the men rejoined the disreputable trio preparing their horses for the wearisome ride back to La Junta.
Why not 'crooks'. It's like a prerequisite of a Western to have the 'crook' somewhere.

I'm off to read part 3.
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jabulani Africa!
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 01-15-2013, 04:52 PM
AbdulaOblongata's Avatar
AbdulaOblongata (Offline)
The Next Bard
Official Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Midwest USA
Posts: 399
Thanks: 34
Thanks 101
Default

Judith,
You know, using "crook" never occured to me. I always thought of that word as being a twenties gangster-esque term.

Ah well, for the time being, we'll chalk it up to cultural differences and creative license.

I hope my "burly associate" edit was to your liking.

See you later,
Abdula
__________________
"The rightness of one's actions is not determined by the desirability of the outcome."
Other Works: My Profile>>statistics>>started threads

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Powered by #WriterNation
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 01-16-2013, 02:01 AM
Judith's Avatar
Judith (Offline)
Noteworthy
Official Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: South Africa
Posts: 302
Thanks: 149
Thanks 85
Default

Didn't you ever play 'Cowboys and Crooks'?

The edited sentence reads much better. I'm really glad I pushed my opinion on that one.
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jabulani Africa!
Reply With Quote
Reply

  WritersBeat.com > Write Here > Fiction


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Highwaymen 1 of 3 AbdulaOblongata Fiction 22 01-14-2013 10:23 AM


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:49 PM.

vBulletin, Copyright © 2000-2006, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.