Saturday, July 27, 2013

A Western in 30 Working Days--Day Seven

Me in an earlier day. Could be a Dent, though
I KNOW. The days in the title and those in the calendar don't jibe. Still, that's what time I've been able to put in as of right now. Two days on the road didn't give me any time, and a half day reporting today evened out the time to seven working days on the novel. My count.

We know Molly Miller's in trouble. And she is. Read this.

Molly squatted not far from Wee Willy, but in the shade of a boulder. She was thirstier than she’d ever been in her life, but she refused to drink or even look at the canteens, unless told to fetch one.

“You all’ll die if’n you don’t take some water,” Wee Willy said. He spoke only loud enough for his voice to carry to Molly’s ears.

Molly shook her head. “I don’t care,” she whispered. “I just don’t care.”

“You gotta care, missus.”

“I’m just a bitch. A bitch’s an animal. No use living.”

Question: will Molly survive until someone can rescue her? Could any woman survive the sadistic treatment they'd receive from the Dents?

“Move’ut,” Leroy hollered.

She dogtrotted across the sunburnt patch of ground and halted in front of Leroy, her shoulders slumped and her head bowed. Her ratty hair fell in snarls around her face.

Leroy took a roundhouse swing at her that sent his right hand splatting against the side of her face. “Bitch. When I call ya, come running.”

Molly dropped to her knees without a sound.

“You hear me, bitch?” Leroy’s voice nearly screeched.

Molly toppled forward, but caught herself with hands spread wide, elbows locked and fingers splayed. She panted. Ung. Ung. Ung. Ung. Like a child who has been told to shut up, but can’t hold the sobs back completely. 

Stryker has his problems, too. But Tucson's a populous town so privacy or not being recognized is an iffy situation. 

“Hold up, Saif,” Stryker said. The black Arabian stopped.

Carpenter pulled the dun up beside Saif. “Damn. That’s some horse you’ve got, Stryker. Never seen the like. Like he knows everything you say.”

“He hears me when he likes what I say,” Stryker said. “Where’s your friend?”

“Upton ain’t no friend of mine.”

“You don’t say.”

“He had a foot on the rail over to the Red Garter,” Carpenter said. “I stood alongside, and he bought me a drink. That’s about it.”

“Red Garter’s a ways away from Chez Bennie.”

“A man’ll go all the way across town for good food. Ever been to El Paso?”

“Passing through.”

“Ever hear of Rosa’s? Just across the bridge into Mexico? Now that’s a place men ride halfway across Texas for. Good, dark Mexican brew and the best machaca this side of San Lucas.”

“Why are you following me, Elijah?”

Why would Elijah Carpenter follow after Matt Stryker? Well, I'm not going to tell you. In fact, I may not tell you next report either. 

Until we meet again, then. Hasta la vista.