Chapter 2

1339 Words
Audrey and Little Horn are hanging up a sign that says welcome home. Audrey was upset initially because she and Little Horn couldn't travel with her parents. But that didn't last too long. Little Horn took her on a picnic that Bena supervised. Audrey will be eighteen in three months. Six months ago, Little Horn and Audrey asked Qaletaqa and Treasure if they may be promised to one another since Audrey's birthday is close. Qaletaqa and Treasure agreed that they could be but won't become official until her birthday. Qaletaqa made a point of telling Little Horn that still means no touching his daughter yet. Richard walks into the room holding Takoda and has Salome by her hand. Flossie and his mother are in the kitchen cooking. As soon as he sits down, Tokalah, Tarantula, and Lisa Marie run into the room. They're playing tag. He starts to tell them to stop running, but he laughs instead. "What can I say? I always said I wanted a house full. God always answers prayers." He's looking at Yellow Bird and the Chief walking into the room with Mahpee and Tashunka. Daniel is behind them. He gives Richard a look that Richard hasn't seen in a few years. "Audrey, you and Little Horn look after your brothers and sister. I have something to tend to." Richard hands her Takoda and walks to his office. Neither man said a word until they were behind closed doors. "Treasure received a telegram. Adam said it's important and can't wait until she and Qaletaqa return." Daniel hands him the two pieces of paper. "I have heard talk around town that a Doc Tillingham is on his way here. You know what that means." "Son of a b***h. If his ass thinks he'll turn Willow Creek Falls into another Dodge City. He has another damn thing coming. Stupid bastard." Richard looks up from one of the papers. "Some of Salome's relatives are coming. They will be here soon," he starts reading the other one. "My son isn't going to be happy about this man contacting my daughter. But I'm sure as hell glad he did, except for the part about him seeing her soon. He's warning her about two men heading our way. It seems that he overheard their conversation. f*****g gamblers and gunmen," Richard sits down behind his desk. "I should have known that our peace would come to an end. Make sure that the Sheriff knows of this. Also, send some men to town to keep an eye out for strangers. Tell Kitty to let me know if anyone checks in. My son and daughter will arrive in a couple of hours. I’ll inform them of this then." He hits his desk. “No mutherfuckers is taking my damn town. I’ll blow it up before I let that s**t happen.” Flossie knocked on the door. When Audrey told her he was in his office with Daniel, she went looking for him. She knew that something had to be wrong for him not to bring their grand or great-grandchildren with him. Richard takes them with him everywhere he goes. Salome and Lisa Marie are spoiled since they are the only girls. Daniel excuses himself and tips his hat to her. Flossie is looking at her angry husband. She walks behind the desk and sits on his lap. ”Dear, what have your feathers ruffled?” “How dare some bastards think I would sit back and watch them take over what I have built with my sweat. I’ll kill every mutherfucker that thinks otherwise.” He looks at her. "I'm so serious." “Well, now, Richard Abbott, it looks like we have a fight coming our way. We can’t allow that to happen. I’ll tell Corine to keep an eye also. She and Lois meet at the diner once a week. So, she might hear something." He kisses her arm. “I wonder why they would consider coming here? Bringing that bullshit here is an even better question.” “Sweetheart, they probably figure we are pushovers since we’re a small and quiet town.” She stood up and took his hand. “Let's go feed the kids. I don’t like leaving those twins alone with Audrey for too long. Especially Tarantula. Treasure was right when she called his little tail mischief.” Richard chuckles. “He does love to aggravate his brother and sister. But he won’t mess with Tokalah for some reason." “That’s because Tokalah will go upside his head when he gets on his nerves.” Flossie is leading him out of the office. ***** Ned, Bill, and old man Albert sit at the town saloon. Ned is telling them about some tracks he came across while hunting earlier. Whoever it was, did a damn good job of running the tracks together. But if he had to bet on it, he would say they are heading to John’s old homestead. No one had been there in years, not since the day that everyone thought that John had left town because Jane had left him. Most people thought that Jane would have sold it by now. But she doesn’t want anything to do with it. Steve and she bought the house and land that Richard had moved her to after she left John. Jane always says that place has too many bad memories. Bill tells them that he heard Jane say something about John having two sisters and a brother that he left it to. But she never met any of them. She doesn't know if they know that John supposedly has left town. She never tried to contact them since John never told her their names or whereabouts. Joseph walks into the saloon and joins the men. They are a little surprised that he is out tonight. Joseph doesn't come to the saloon too often. He mostly stays home with Maryann and their three sons. Gabriel, Gary, and Jeremy. Joseph has become a family man and has stopped bedding women all over town. Whenever he looks at a woman who isn’t his wife, his thoughts return to the night Qaletaqa visited him. He doesn’t want a replay of that night. He knows that he can’t win against Qaletaqa. The three men tell Joseph what they are talking about. They were shocked when he told them a man had just ridden into town looking for Howard and said that he was Howard's son. They had no idea that Howard had any kids. When the Sheriff told him that Howard was dead, the man asked him to direct him to a place to stay for the night. The last time he saw the man, he rode toward Kitty’s boarding house. “Damn, Howard had a son.” Bill shook his head .” I hope his ass doesn’t have any of his father's nasty habits. " Ned drinks his beer. "If he does Treasure can fix that problem quickly." "That's for damn sure. It's good that she goes to him before some of these fathers around here do." Old man Albert drinks his whiskey, then waves for Jamie to bring another round for the table, thinking, "I was planning on killing that bastard myself." Joseph looks at Richard, Little Horn, and some ranch hands riding in. He sees Flossie and Audrey in the buggy. Then he sees the stagecoach stopping in front of the stagecoach office. "Damn, she is more beautiful than the first time I saw her," he thought while looking at Treasure holding Qaletaqa's hands as she stepped out of the stagecoach. Richard hugs her and Isabell then he shakes Qaletaqa and Tatanka's hands. Little Horn is helping Flossie and Audrey out of the buggy. As soon as Audrey's feet are on the ground, she runs to her mother and father, wrapping her arms around them. Howard's son is staring at Audrey. "She is a pretty little thing. Willow Creek Falls just might be the place for me after all."
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