A salute to all the writers who entered the challenge.
Grace hung her head and tapped at a loose nail on the porch of the stage line ticket station with the toe of her boot. “You’re all packed and ready to go?”
“It’s saddle bags, Grace. Magic ones at that. Don’t take long to shove a blue shirt in.” Kid Curry leaned onto the porch rail and watched a man on the ground tossing bags to the stage driver, who stood atop the conveyance battening them into place.
“I just wish we had longer. I mean, I know there’s a full thirty-one days in May, but, dang! It sure felt like a February, didn’t it?” She shook her head, sadly. “And a leap year February at that.”
“Uh-huh,” Curry responded distractedly, watching as a pretty young blonde sashayed away from the ticket station and toward the stage.
“Wonder if Heyes had as nice a time at Penski’s place while you and I were…” she blushed, “visitin’.”
“Huh? Oh, maybe.” He nodded. “Yeah, sure of it.”
“…On whose place you’ll go to next?” Grace waited for an answer. None came. “I said, you got any preference on whose place you’ll go to next?”
Curry jerked his focus back to Grace. “Who’s in the runnin’ again?”
“There’s Maz, of course. Maybe you’ll be goin’ to her place.” Grace rolled her eyes. “But she always forces you to stay in her basement and I know how you…”
Two blue eyes shot Grace a warning.
Grace gulped and cleared her throat. “I mean, I know how you prefer a sunny room. And then there’s the new writer, Claybank. Maybe he’s a guy, and maybe she’s a gal. And maybe you’ll be goin’ to meet him…or her. Sure can write though, whoever he is, or she. Got that goin’ for him. Her.”
“How about InsideOutlaw or Yope? You’ve been to their places a couple of times, right?”
“Maybe. You writers got us comin’ and goin’ so quick, hard to remember how many times me and Heyes have been where.”
“Maybe riders and Remuda will win you boys, I mean the bandana, this month. They’re lots of fun. Maybe if you go visit one of them, they’ll take you on a trip to Philly to see Independence Hall.”
“Maybe,” the Kid agreed.
“You been to RosieAnnie’s place yet?” Grace wondered.
“Maybe,” Curry answered, shrugging. “This ‘Ppreciation Society Bandana Awardin’ thing is enough to make an outlaw’s head spin.”
“Frankie and Penski teamed up this month, so if either one of them were to win, maybe you and Heyes might split time on different sides of the globe, huh?”
“Maybe,” the Kid muttered while the stage coach driver assisted the pretty blonde into his stage. “Grace, they’re loadin’. I gotta go.”
“Okay, if you gotta. But… Maybe you’ll be back to visit me again? Sometime soon?”
“Maybe, Grace,” he said, and gave her a quick peck on the cheek before running to the stage, waving. Slamming the door, the Kid turned his attention to his pretty stage-mate. He smiled, a devilishly charming smile, and tipped his hat. “Maybe!”
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