A full October moon shone brightly, illuminating a circling of wagons, each one adorned in distinctive Gypsy fashion. At the center of the circle a campfire had long gone cold. All was silent, silent as a grave, save for the distant cry of a lone coyote.
A sudden gust whipped through a nearby stand of aspen scattering dry leaves and stirring the heavy black curtain at the back of one wagon. A single figure stepped from within. As if on cue, a shadow passed across the face of the moon, obscuring the face of the late night visitor. The figure scurried quickly into the darkness, away from the Gypsy camp.
The coyote howled again.
Despite the late hour, a woman alone on Cheyenne’s main street hailed a taxi. “The capitol building,” she said, breathless.
“No one’ll be there at this hour,” the driver informed her.
“Just do as I say,” the woman demanded. “And quickly!” She pushed the hood of her shawl from her head as she spoke.
Recognizing his passenger, the driver complied. “Yes ma’am.” He flicked the reins.
As the carriage bounded toward Cheyenne’s capitol building, the woman recalled her card reading session with the old Gypsy woman. The Seven of Clubs – Success. The Two of Clubs – Obstacles to that success. And finally, the Ace of Spades – Misfortune, endings. Death?
There would be no obstacles to success, no misfortune. Not if she had anything to say about it.
Sheriff Lom Trevors stood in the shadows of an alley with Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry. “Now you two wait here,” he said, “while I go up and make sure Governor Moonlight is ready to see you.”
Heyes smiled and playfully punched his partner in the arm. “Didn’t I tell you this day would finally come, Kid?”
“You sure did, Heyes,” Curry answered. “There were times I thought we were never gonna make it, but…”
A figure stepped from the darkness. Moonlight glistened off the surface of an old Civil War era Colt Revolver. Two shots cut the night.
“No!” Sheriff Trevors cried. He ran to the place where his friends had been standing only seconds before. “Wh…,” he began. He knelt beside two bodies. Then he looked toward the person standing, smoking gun still in her hand. “Mrs…Mrs. Moonlight?”
Two cold-as-steel eyes glared back at Lom Trevors. “These men are Hannibal Heyes and Kid Curry, Sheriff. And they’re wanted—Dead or Alive.”
“Kid!” Hannibal Heyes knelt next to his partner’s bed roll, shaking him by the shoulders. “Wake up, you hear me? You’re having a…”
With a loud shout, the Kid sat bolt upright, covered in sweat.
“You were having a nightmare,” Heyes finished, and sat back into the dirt.
Curry ran two shaky hands through matted, sweaty hair, then took a deep breath and blew it out. He gazed up at the full October moon. All was silent, silent as a grave, save for the distant cry of a lone coyote.
Heyes waited a few moments, then asked, “You feel like talking about it?”
The Kid shook his head. “No, Heyes. No I don’t. But first thing in the mornin’ we’re headin’ to Old Mexico.”
“What are you talking about? We’re going to Cheyenne tomorrow, remember? Lom said the governor wants to meet with us, and this time… You just gotta have a little faith, Kid. This time for sure…”
“No, Heyes. This time we’re doin’ things my way. This time, you just gotta have a little faith in me.”
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