Let’s play a game

11 02 2008

I found a story that I wrote in 11th grade. It’s a very short story but could be considered the end of a longer tale.

Now, here is what I propose. I shall post what I wrote and anyone with a spare 20 minutes can write another ‘chapter’. It would probably have to be a prequel. I will pick what I think is the best one and there will be a prize for the winner. (At the moment I’m debating a monetary vs a ‘glory’ prize.)

Feel free to take a stab at it and I will promise to post something more ‘meaningful’ soon. If it doesn’t inspire you at all take something in it and run with it. Heck, rewrite this bit if you want to!

The Cowboy

            The Cowboy sat slumped over the bar, his callused hands clutching his drink, his eyes bloodshot and vague.

             It was always like this. After his weekly or bi-weekly shoot-out you could find him here. He could drink any man you’d name under the table, then have a few more for good measure.

             No one was quite sure where he came from, just like no one knew his real name. If they had to, they’d call him Spur, but he wasn’t the type of person to strike up an idle conversation with.  

            He was heading out tomorrow for the big cattle drive up north. Heading home, he’d said. The town folk weren’t sure that he had ever had a home, much less one he could return to.  So they shook their heads sadly and looked at him only out of the corners of their eyes.                       

                        There had always been plenty of rumors about his past life, that he was a bank-robber who had hidden his loot up in the hills above town, that he was a rich heir who’d had enough of city life. Or, the most ludicrous, that he had come out West to escape the humiliation of being left at the altar. Any way you put it he wasn’t a man to trifle with.                  

               As the day dragged on the Cowboy’s head slumped lower and lower, until, finally, it hit the bar and he slept.

                The bartender, Gus, by name, shook his head and grabbed a broom. You couldn’t win against the dust but you could sure give a good fight. Gus stepped onto the porch, into the sun, just in time to see a coach roll up in a cloud of dust. Once the dust had settled a pretty young woman, dressed all in blue, stepped gracefully out. Her eyes were rimmed in dark circles and as she looked quickly up and caught Gus’ eyes he thought that he had never seen such despair. A pity really, such pretty blue eyes. Then she was gone, into the hotel.

            A loud moan pulled Gus out of his reverie. The cowboy had lurched to the doorway and was staring owlishly into the sun.           

             Before Gus could stop him he swung awkwardly up onto his horse and gave a mocking salute. “I’m going home Gus.”

            With that he swung his black around and rode slowly down the street into the sunset. 

            No one ever did figure out who pulled the trigger that fateful twilight, Spur had many enemies, too many to arrest all of them. All they know is that it was a rifle crack that broke the silence. And it was the Cowboy’s body that fell to the dry earth.

             As everyone stepped out into the street to see what the gunshot was for, a dead and eerie silence fell. At least until a muted cry was heard, like the sound of a dying animal, and the girl in blue broke through the crowd to run and drop beside the body of the Cowboy.

             As she raised his head into her lap she sobbed quietly. “David, David I’m sorry.” 

            The cowboy looked up slowly, and through the pain drew a shuddering breath. “Juliet….why? I waited so long, so very, very long… and you never came.”

            The girl tried to reply but he was already gone. His hat, and her tears, fell to the earth.  

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4 responses

11 02 2008
Jason Ericson

Oooohh…I’m very tempted to take this up if I have time, but I have to say this works really well by itself too. In fact, I have a hard time thinking of how I might “continue” it. It’s such a compact story. And a really really good one, by the way.

I’ll see what I can do though!

11 02 2008
Meghan

That’s why I love my readers… they’re always up for a challenge.

Or is it just that they find my blog an amusing way to avoid work/homework/school/chores…?

(May I confess that I do not really care?!)

11 02 2008
Jennifer James

I will write more, but erm… I shall need time. Or at least a decent break. I like this one alot, did you take creative writing in HS? I can’t remember?

11 02 2008
Jennifer James

Two things I know about this story. (I tried to write it out, but my brain won’t settle)

Juliet is his twin sister.

She is searching for something he took, that was not his to take.

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