PDA

View Full Version : Moving West - Chapt 27 - A Fork in the Road



barnburner
01-18-2011, 06:13 AM
While Mariska was cleaning Sean's wounds, Dover was busy cleaning a mess of fish he had caught out of the stream, when they heard the sound of a wagon coming down the trail. Soon the wagon pulled up
outside their camp, and it's very large driver yelled out, "HELLO THE CAMP! MAY I COME IN?"
At the first sound of the wagon, both Mariska and Dover had grabbed their rifles, and were well prepared, so Dover replied "COME IN SHOOTING, COME IN PEACEFUL, WE ARE READY EITHER WAY."
The driver stepped forward with his hands in plain sight. "My name is Dan Newly. My wife and I have a farm not too far down the trail. The doctor you brought out here, has been a friend of ours, and spent the night with us before heading for home this morning. I must tell you that we were less than happy
with his reluctance to help you folks out. We would like to offer our home as a place for all of you, while your wounded man heals up enough to be able to travel. Should you wish to accept our offer, we can load him up in the wagon. I brought a lot of blankets to make as comfortable a bed as possible."
Mariska walked forward, took Mr. Newly's hand, and said, "Sir, we appreciate your kindness, and will gladly accept your offer."
After introductions were made, they broke camp, and were ready to move. Sean was carefully loaded onto the wagon, and Mariska climbed up to keep an eye on him during the trip to the Newly farm. Their packhorse was tied off to the rear of the wagon, and Dover followed with the other two horses.
It was less than an hour's trip to their destination. Once there, Mrs. Newly led them into the spare bedroom, where Sean was set down on a soft feather bed, a definite step up from the blanket on the ground that he was used to. Turning to Dover, Dan Newly said, "Mr. Dover, we don't have another spare room, but you are welcome to your choice of sleeping in the
living room on blankets, or, on the hay in the barn."
"Well, tell you the truth, I've spent so many nights sleeping outside that I can't hardly sleep indoors anyway. The hay in the barn sounds great, and thanks for it."
Later that day, they were treated to a very plentiful and tasty supper cooked by Anna Newly. Afterwards, they all went into Sean and Mariska's room, and gathered around Sean, while the Newly's listened to their guest's traveling stories. As he stood up, Mr. Newly grinned and said, "Well, one things for sure....next time we go to town for supplies, I'll have more to talk about than just how my crops are doing, or complaining about the weather!"

The sun was just beginning to rise above the horizon, when Dover knocked on Sean and Mariska's bedroom door. Mariska opened the door, and told Dover to come on in. Dover, carrying his early morning coffee cup, looked back over his shoulder, and whispered, “Ma'm, I don't want to hurt Mrs. Newly's feelings, but I have to tell you – her coffee just doesn't come close to matching yours.”
Mariska laughed, and said, “Well, I suspect you have been drinking my coffee for so long that you have forgotten what good coffee really tastes like...”
Dover kept moving around the room, offering small talk, and fidgeting, until finally Mariska spoke out. "Dover, clearly you have something on your mind, out with it.."
Staring out the window at the early morning sun, Dover set his now empty coffee cup on the dresser and turned around." Well, folks, I've been thinking. You two have a good place to stay while Sean here heals up. I'm thinking it's time for me to be moving on. I stayed with you when Sean was sick back there in Mississippi, because I thought ya'll needed me until you got a little more seasoning. Well, you have certainly done that. Ma'm, you have as much courage and wisdom as any woman I've ever met. Sean, well, it looks like he's too stubborn to die, so he will be just fine."
"The Nez Perce should be in Montana hunting buffalo along about this time. I'm a blood brother to one of their sub-chiefs, and they keep a lodge for me. Winter comes early up there, and I've been thinking about those Nez Perce women. Ma'm, I reckon you would turn heads no matter where you went, but I have to tell you that those Nez Perce women will give you a run for your money – they surely would. Figure I better get on my way up there, and get me three or four of those pretty gals to get me through the winter".
"Just three or four?, asked Mariska with laughter in her eyes. Are you sure that will be enough? After all, it's a long winter in the north country."
"Well Ma'm, I'll be a guest in the tribe. I don't want to be selfish, so reckon I'll have to make do with just three or four.” Dover stepped over to Sean's bed and offered his hand. "I was up early, I'm packed and ready to go. Sean, I'm proud to call you friend. Best of luck to you. If you ever decide to get yourself killed, let me know, and I'll come back and take care of your beautiful wife.”
Sean shook Dover's hand, and replied, “Sure thing... We won't forget everything you have done for us... So long, and good luck! You will always be welcome at our fire."
"Well", Dover answered, "I get around a bit, so don't be surprised if I show up sometime looking for a good cup of coffee."
Mariska hugged Dover with tears in her eyes, and said "Goodbye Dover. We shall miss you terribly. Take care of yourself."
Dover turned and walked to the door,stopped, turned, tipped his hat, and simply said, "Goodbye Mariska".

With that, he mounted, and headed down the trail. Winter comes early in the mountains, so Dover intended to make up time by riding long and hard. The end of the day found him between two trees, sitting perfectly still, as he looked over the
flatlands ahead of him, his eyes searching for any movement that might be hostile Indians, or outlaws. He would remain right there until the sun went down. There were exceptions, but most of the Indians in that part of the country were reluctant to fight at night. They had been taught that if they were killed at night, their spirit would forever wander in the darkness. Dover figured to ride through the night, find a good hiding spot, and sleep in the morning.
As he waited for the sun to drop out of sight, the man called Dover was struck by the thought that for the first time in many years, he had been devoting more time to thinking about what he had just left, than to what lay ahead around the corner, or over the mountain.

fraser_paice
01-18-2011, 10:01 AM
This is getting epic mate.

Caesar
01-18-2011, 10:28 AM
Time to select an appropriate soundtrack. It's gonna become a great movie! :eek::cool::)

barnburner
01-18-2011, 11:51 AM
This is getting epic mate.

:) Thank you Fraser. Truly appreciated. :)

barnburner
01-18-2011, 11:53 AM
Time to select an appropriate sundtrack. It's gonna become a great movie! :eek::cool::)

LOL... I'll get my staff right on that job.... :)
Thank you very much. You very kind comment is truly appreciated. :)

eighty+
01-18-2011, 12:32 PM
Hi my Hoss is tired I gess I just hunker down we got a lovely red sky

Tonight the best I've seen for a long Chalk ok as got a long ride

Morrow :cool: :D:D:D:D:D:D:D----E/S

barnburner
01-18-2011, 12:53 PM
Hi my Hoss is tired I gess I just hunker down we got a lovely red sky

Tonight the best I've seen for a long Chalk ok as got a long ride

Morrow :cool: :D:D:D:D:D:D:D----E/S

Thanks Eighty. Appreciate it. :)

semd74
01-18-2011, 02:42 PM
Well...I kinda hate to see Dover movin on by himself

barnburner
01-18-2011, 03:23 PM
Well...I kinda hate to see Dover movin on by himself

Well, he won't really be by himself...remember those 3 or 4 beautiful Nez Perce women?? :D:D:D

Thanks a lot Steve! :):)

Caesar
01-18-2011, 11:25 PM
... maybe Dover is going to have some fun with some Nez Percés chicks, but, as usual, the forbidden apple may still be in his mind, especially after a famous bathing show.;)
I would attach here a very quick and modest sketch of what is possibly haunting Dover's dreams ...:D

Alexandra
01-19-2011, 12:54 AM
You have us all hooked dear Mike. I've enjoyed your story and illustrations and looking forward to more!

Mikes story leaves us with many images doesn't he Cesare? Great illustration there also!

barnburner
01-19-2011, 05:44 AM
... maybe Dover is going to have some fun with Nez some Percés chicks, but, as usual, the forbidden apple may still be in his mind, especially after a famous bathing show.;)
I would attach here a very quick and modest sketch of what is possibly haunting Dover's dreams ...:D

Oh, I think without a doubt that Dover's desire for Mariska was a motivating factor in his decision to leave...
Caesar, love this sketch... it really does tell the story.
Great job. :)

barnburner
01-19-2011, 05:47 AM
You have us all hooked dear Mike. I've enjoyed your story and illustrations and looking forward to more!

Mikes story leaves us with many images doesn't he Cesare? Great illustration there also!

What a wonderful comment Sandy! Guess this is not a good time for writers block??? :D
I've been an avid reader since I was a little boy, and one of the great things about reading, is that regardless of the writer's description, or the illustrator's sketch, we all get to have our own image of exactly what the characters and the landscape look like. Thank you very much Sandra. :):)

coops
01-19-2011, 10:35 PM
I love reading through this Barnburner and you really keep the story sooo enthralling, well done:)

barnburner
01-20-2011, 01:12 AM
I love reading through this Barnburner and you really keep the story sooo enthralling, well done:)

Thank you so much Coops.. :)