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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
JenEllen Fiction: Shenandoah and Beaver! (106* d) RE: Fiction: Shenandoah and Beaver! 12 Mar 06


Katherine waited downstairs for nearly an hour, but there was sign of neither Bill nor Jack. She ate a modest breakfast and then decided to go into the town on her own and try to find out more about where Emmet might have gone off to. She reached the sunny porch of the hotel and in gazing around caught sight of the whorehouse. She gave an involuntary shiver and then struck out on her own. After speaking with the merchant Chouteau, and the town doctor Saugrain, she realized that even though Emmet had made a mark on the town, it was hardly an indelible one. Memories were fragile and suggestible things, and it seemed as if everyone she met had too little to tell her.

Upon leaving the doctor's office, she caught sight again of the whorehouse. Life was stirring even at this early hour of the day and she cringed to think that if there was anywhere in this town that a man like her brother could have left his mark, that might just be the place.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Dixie had just come downstairs when she saw the young woman come in to the bar. 'Same eyes, same face, the resemblance is striking,' she thought to herself. The poor thing looked scared out her wits. Dixie walked over to her and whispered coyly: "I'll be damned if you ain't a McInnis." When the surprised woman smiled shyly at her, Dixie grinned back, and when she asked if she had to pay for a quiet place to talk, Dixie just said, "Honey, this one is on the house."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When he had left Katherine and gone to Bill's room, Jack saw that it was empty as a tomb. He rushed downstairs only to find that the mister Corporal Brennan had check out that very morning. Jack slammed the counter with his fist and all but ran to the livery. He arrived in time to see Bill settling up his affairs with the stableboy and leading his horse to be saddled.
"Going somewhere?" he asked.

Bill turned around to face him: "We're done here, Jack. We brought her to St. Louis. We did what we were asked to do and now it's time to go home. I am leaving and I suggest that you do the same."

"You know I can't do that," replied Jack. "We said we'd help her find her brother, and I don't recall having done that yet. If your memory is clearer than mine--and your conscience is cleaner--then you go ahead and get on that horse, but I'm staying."

Bill swung his leg up and over his horse in one fluid motion. He looked down at his friend and said: "I have to check in with Col. Atkinson at the Barracks before I leave. If I get the order, Jack, you know you have to go or face a firing squad. It's your decision, and I hope to God she's worth it to you," and with that he nudged his horse in the ribs and trotted off towards the river.

Jack watched his friend ride away and the fury in his face changed to wonder as he saw Katherine leaving the whorehouse with a woman who was obviously a resident of the establishment. They embraced at the door and Katherine left to walk back towards the hotel.   The woman in the doorway watched Katherine leave, and then looked straight at Jack and waved. Jack blushed a deep crimson as he crossed the street to the whorehouse. When he got within earshot, the woman called out to him: "You know that girl? If you got any sense at all you'll get on upstairs and show her what you're made of!" Jack's blush went several shades deeper as the woman and several patrons laughed at her remarks. Jack did his best to save face--a mock salute not unlike the one he delighted Katherine with-- then a turn and a quick jog up the street. As he left, he could hear the raucous laughter following him like a train.


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