The one thing I can say about Johnny Behan is that he is persistent. He persistently shows up at my doorstep, trying to be every bit the dandy and impress me with flowers and bits of ribbon or niceties that any man could buy for any ten women who’ve caught their eye. Johnny Behan also quite persistently succeeds in raising my ire, just as surely as one would make a cat sore at rubbing her fur backward. Still, with the offer of dinner and the possibility of meeting some of the town officials that could possibly help me with my cattle problem at the Hacienda Las Glorias, I found myself relenting to his relentless, if not overzealous, entreatments.
I took my time getting ready, but not so that he would notice. Surely, though it was dinner out, I made certain to dress modestly. I made it absolutely certain that I would be staying at hotel – alone and would pay for it myself. There would be no talk, I was not about to have that. It would not do to have the Tombstone gossips getting the idea that I was doing anything other than taking the evening with Johnny Behan and going straight back out to the Hacienda, even if I had to arrange passage myself. To say I did not have an idea who to trust at this point is quite the understatement.
The fire had left in its wake not only the devastation of property but so many who had been injured. I stayed as close as I could to those who needed my help. At one point, once the fire was out, the men sat, soot covered faces and limbs, waiting patiently for a cool sip of water. There staggering and exhausted I found Wyatt Earp, whom I had observed earlier.
Without thinking I handed him the cup of water in my hands. I must have looked as much a fright as he did having fought the great beast of a fire. He took it gratefully but as he did so he looked as if he could have keeled over. Letting the bucket in my hands drop with a slosh, I held his arm and guided him to the boardwalk. He said something softly that sounded like thanks but I didnae respond. I was myself aching and threadbare from the efforts of helping those who were burned, directing those who didnae know much of nursing to tie bandages and asking after herbes that we might commandeer for the cause. Continue reading
It had been two months since I had received the letter from my Uncle Angus McLeod in the Arizona Territory. I read the missive over and over again from the time it reached my small cottage just outside of the Scottish village of Dunnlauden.
He was opting to give up ranching. He needed to go back to Scotland, see to his affairs. Since I was the last of his living kin, though on the other side of the Atlantic, he needed me to please come. I agreed, and so I put myself on a ship that took me to Boston. I took the train out West to Arizona. Where it was agreed that I would look after his beloved Hacienda, Las Glorias, at least until I could find a way to hire someone to look after the place, or sell it for him. whichever he would bid me to do once he was back home in the Highlands. It was probably for the best that I was not fixing to stay permanently. No. I insisted to myself. I was definitely not at all fixing to stay.
hat a contradiction that is.
I have always felt as if I was alone. When are born with one foot in the world of Mankind and the other in the world of the Fae, you never really belong fully to either. It’s rare that either side wants to count you among their number. There is always that small unspoken nuance found behind a smile or a glance that strikes a pang in your heart. You know that they doubt you as one of their own.