Dirty Pants (Part I): A RDR Chronicle Contest Winner…
This is the last of the winners of the Red Dead Redemption Chronicles Contest. This piece was submitted by David Goransson, and it drove me into the story in a way that I couldn’t wait for reading the next sentence. It’s quite long, so I’ll publish it in two parts. First one is here, and I hope you like as much as I do. Again, it’s different from Oly‘s and EdEN‘s.
Make sure to read until the end… There’s a surprise for you…
Tumbleweed. A town of ghosts and evil spirits. Or so I was told at the poker table when I pulled out the worn and dirty piece of paper with a mansion skilfully etched in graphite. The fear in the faces around that table in Armadillo’s Saloon was real.
“Don’t go there at night – and never alone.” Ted Boston said shaking his head. “Six-shooter’s no good for killing what’s already dead.”
He was so shook up he didn’t notice me switch out my deuce for an Ace. Not that I needed the distraction, though cheating at cards was a whole lot harder when the whisky was flowing.
I rode “Dead Eye” my trusted Kentucky Saddler stallion hard – buoyed by the proposition that the only thing between me and enough gold to raise my own posse was a bunch of ghosts and local superstition. I should have known better.
The mansion was the first building I saw as I approached Tumbleweed. There was no mistaking that this was same building drawn on the cryptic map tucked in my duster. It stood on a hill on the far side of town – And I heard it before I saw it. Haunted my ass. There was a full scale ruckus going on in that building with drunks staggering on the balcony and whores hanging out the upper windows, and guns being shot into the air.
And since when did ghosts need to keep sentries on watch? Damn! There was gold somewhere in that mansion – at least I hoped it was still there and I had drunk more than I usually did when there was killing to be had. But then again, I was always good when it came to killing.
I left Dead Eye deep in the brush, slung my Spingfield rile across my back, adjusted the sawed off in the dockers clutch under my duster and made sure my volcano pistol was fully loaded.
The light was starting to fade and I figured I had an hour at most left of sunlight. Apart from the mansion, the rest of the town was empty – except for a small broken down stable close to where I had taken cover in the brush. Two sentries. Now what was in that stable worth guarding? The gold maybe? One way or the other, I was going to find out.
I would normally have waited till it was dark, but both men were drunk and one was staggering over to the outhouse. Take your opportunities when they come I had always been taught and I slit the first guards throat from behind. The second guard died in the middle of his business, the surprise remaining on his face as my dagger entered his chest while my free hand choked any sound that may have come from his throat.
I crouched and made my way slowly into the deserted stable – a heard something to my left and my volcano pistol was out of my holster as I spun and rolled to my right. But the man I had heard was unarmed, tied and gagged, and writhing on the floor. I got up and slowly moved over to the pathetic looking creature on the floor. I lifted the man to his knees – my gun held steady to his head. He was trying to say something but he had a thick piece of rawhide tied around his mouth and there was something metal between his teeth. I cocked my pistol as I cut his gag – and he spat out the metal object along with two teeth and a whole lot of blood. I bent down and picked up the object – sheriffs star!
“You gotta help me,” the man spluttered hoarsely. “Cut me loose.”
“Now why would I do that, lawman?” I asked as I reached into the pocket of my long duster and pulled out my chewing tobacco.
“Listen to me mister,” the sheriff pleaded. “I’m sheriff Randall and . . “
“Marsten.” I interrupted as I popped the tobacco into my mouth.
The sheriffs eyes widened. “Marsten? John Marsten? I heard o you! You’re working for them guvment boys in Blackwater! You’re practically a law man yourself. Cut me loose and we can take these boys together!”
“Was a time, “ I said, lowering my gun slowly, “when I would just as soon shoot you as look at you. I’ve shot and killed jus bout everything that breathes – coyotes, wolves, cougars . . . and men – and women. Man and animal, ‘s all the same to me. I’d skin em both if there were money in it.”
“But you’ve changed! “ the lawman protested. “You are working for the good now.”
“Then I met someone,” I spat my tobacco, ignoring him. “And things did change. I married a good woman, and all of a sudden there was one human being walkin the earth that I cared for. Then I had kids, and there were some more that I cared for.” I paused, and then slowly brought my gun back up to the sheriff’s head. “But I pretty much still feel the same way bout e’ryone else.”
“Please cut me loose Marsten,” the sheriff began whimpering. “If there is any decency in you . . .”
“My wife tells me that the road to decency is taken one step at a time,” I sighed, “But letting you go out of decency is just too big of a step for me to take at this time.” I lowered my gun and then grinned. “But sharing, now there is a step I can take. Pretty soon lawman, there is going to be a whole lot of lead coming my way – and it behoves me to be sharing some of that with you.”
“Are you telling me you are going to help me Mr Marsten?“ The Sheriff asked hopefully.
“On one condition.” I answered.
“There’s something in that there mansion that I want. I’ll help you take those boys down if you leave me be to take what I came for.”
“Sounds fair enough,” the lawman replied cautiously.
“And we do it my way. Deal?”
“Yes sir Mr Marsten. Now cut me loose.”
I made short work of the sheriff’s bonds and we crept back outside where the guard whose throat I had cut earlier had a Winchester repeater lying beside him.
“There’s 15 of them,” the sheriff said. “13 men and two crazy whores. . . minus the two you just cut. That leaves us 11. . . I say we take them by. . .”
I waited till the Lawman had bent over and picked up the weapon before raising my pistol to aim back at his chest.
“What are you doin?” the bewildered sheriff asked.
“I told you we were going to do this my way,” I replied calmly. “And here’s what were going to do. You are going to sneak up to that stone wall near the porch and distract them. By distract I mean start shooting at everything that moves.”
“And what are you going to do,” he asked, his wide eyes not leaving my pistol.
“I’m going to stay back a ways. Its getting dark, and I figure when they start shooting back at you, I’ll be able to work out where they is exactly and take em out with my Springfield from a distance.”
“Why you yeller bellied coward . . .you . . .”
“I figured you’d be agreeable to the plan,” I said gesturing at my pistol. “Now get up there before I change my mind and plug you full of holes.”
The lawman scowled at me but said nothing further. I kept my gun trained on him until he moved past me and I was sure he was goin to make his way all the way to the stone wall. Then I holstered the volcano and reached over my shoulder for the Springfield.
To be continued…
Did you manage to get till the last part? Well, today’s your lucky day. Since David Goransson is aussie, he could not use his prize. So he agreed that his prize is back to the giveaway!
Now, how will you win it? Simple, try to guess what’ll happen next. First correct guess will receive the most wanted US $20 PSN Gift Card! If somehow nobody shoots it right, I’ll pick a comment at random. I’ll publish the ending on July 9th. So hurry!