|Birth of a Hero
Author: redFaust PM
In the outback of Oregon, an unlikely boy gets turned into a hero. Short story, reviews welcomeRated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Western - Words: 1,349 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 1 - Published: 11-27-12 - Status: Complete - id: 3078253
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In the dusty plains of Oregon, there speaks a legend of a brave and indestructible bandit catcher. It is said he is righteous and smart, eagle eye vision gracing his already seemingly perfect being. Even his horse was the fastest for many towns, a red feather symbolically knotted into its brown mane. The red feather was a symbol for this bandit catcher and his name was Rufus "Clearheart" Halliday.
Let's cut out the dramatics now, shall we? That en't his real name. Nay, his real name weren't that fancy. In fact it was simple to the point of ridiculousness. His real name was Bill Boxer. Boring, didn't I tell you?
But the words of his gooddoin's en't lies. Oh no, he really was the brightest bullet in the revolver. Or was it the box? Either way, he was a good boy. Man he weren't just yet, nay, he was still wet behind the ears! And clean as day too, even though all them gals whisper about his dashing good looks. The maids never even seen 'is face!
Why you ask? 'Cause this sod of a boy never showed it. Nay, he always kept a cloth wrapped around his face from nose down and never took off his hat either. The gals say it's because he wants to keep his identity hidden. I say he does it to keep the sand out of his nose.
But as I was sayin', this was one hell of a bandit catcher. He never lifted his pistol at an innocent though, no sir! Only them rich slobs which ain't got no use for that gold anyway. At least we drink it way!
Poor Bill had no family. His Ma and Pa died when he was even more of a boy then he is now! But we all took him in, the whole of Oregon loved the boy from the tips of his red hair to his freckles. Nay, he is one good kid.
I remember myself once, when me and him went out a rebel huntin' into the plains. Aye, watching the boy sweat buckets behind his cloth truly was a sight. Amateur. But anyway, where was I? Oh yes, the rebel huntin'. That day I will never forget for that was the day plain ole Bill Boxer turned into Rufus "Clearheart" Halliday!
With the sun falling down behind us and the cool breezes of night beginning to send goosebumps up our arms, the lad and I allowed our horses to trot. We didn't see a single rebel nor a hideout. In short, so far our day was meaningless. After briefly sharing our water canteen, both of us grimacing at the warm water's leathery taste, we grew silent. I saw Bill's head begin drooping but said nothing. He weren't even twenty yet! Let him sleep I thought.
Barely a hundred meters or so later, I heard the hissin' of a snake. Damn buggers, I thought. Whenever you don't want them, they come to you! I didn't bother waking up the boy, what's the use of two idiots running after a single snake I always say. But this time I heard more than just as snake. Even though I might not have been young but my ears were as sharp as ever and footsteps weren't something I would ever confuse.
Boy, lucky I gave Bill a rough shove off his horse or otherwise the bullet would have gone right through his noggin! But he recovered quickly and his revolver was in his hands before I could shout out 'oi'. His eyes flickered around himself to try find the culprit (eagle vision indeed) before he suddenly stood up and brought his armed arm up.
'Surrender!' he called out. I almost shot the stupid sod there and then! Calling out surrender to a bandit? Preposterous, only a kid would think o' that!
Anyhows, I saw that unless I did somethin' 'bout it, that kid would be dog food. So what did I do? I quickly scanned 'round for any hidin' spots that the bandits could've used and saw that there was a clump of bushes not 50 steps away from both of us. With the boy being the idiot, I jumped onto my horse and galloped right into that bush!
Heroic, wouldn't you say? In truth, I thought I was the idiot durin' that moment 'cause seriously, I rode right into some bandits! Well, luckily for me and unlucky for them, I headed for the right bush and my stallion, Jack, trampled them enough to send them runnin' while screamin' and wishing their father never met their mother.
Is that it you say? But Bill did nothin' I hear you ask. Well keep on listenin' 'cause this story ain't over just yet.
As I finished tramplin' those bastards, I stopped and sat in my saddle while watchin' them run away. I felt like I did the right thing, I felt relieved that I was correct and that I had protected the young lad.
Oh, how wrong I was for the moment the two trampled bandits ran a-screamin', another one sneaked out from a smaller bush right near me! I never heard 'im come my way and even my Jack did nothin'. Boy, if it wasn't for Bill, those damned vultures would have had my innards for breakfast long ago!
The brave boy noticed the bandit but, after tellin' me his side of the story, he said that the bandit never noticed him! And so, being the smart kid he sometimes can be, Bill aimed and pulled the trigger of his revolver just as the blasted bandit levelled his own firearm at me. When the shot rang out, I really thought that a bullet was inside me before hearing the shrieks of the bandit as I turned to see him fall onto his knees cradling a red hand. Bill had shot him right at the finger on the trigger!
As fast as I could I jumped from my panicking Jack and rammed the butt of my gun against the bandit's head, makin' him go out like a candle. With that done I straight away turned to Bill who stood there with the expression of a constipated bull. Alrigh', maybe that's a bit exaggerated but I could see on his face that the boy never thought he would have actually pulled that trigger. For a second he had a scared look in his eyes but when I sent him a thumbs up and waved him over, his body loosened up and his face slackened enough to form a small smile.
I guess that's what you can call both the end and the beginning. It was the end of the timid Bill Boxer and the birth of Rufus Halliday. After reachin' our town and givin' away our caught prey, I didn't waste time pretending I did all the work and told the town about Bill's actions. At first they were surprised but then, when the whiskey barrels were opened, everyone cheered and feasted for the kid. I even saw a girl give him a smooch at the end of the day!
Nay, he was a good kid. And from being a good kid he turned into a smart and skilled man as he now is. Watchin' him now, catchin' and imprisoning bandits, I am grateful he turned out as he did. He never turned into a talkative type, not a drinkin' one too, but instead was polite, quiet and keepin' to himself.
And he never forgets to wave at the old man who witnessed the day he changed from Bill to Rufus. Even now, as I sit in front of my tavern, I see him whistle and wave my way as he gallops out of the town's gates, dust following his tracks.
Author's Note: Well...first time writing Western. I'm sorry if I went overboard with the slang, as I said it's my first time writing. It started out as an assignment for school but ended up as this. I would love reviews and tips on how to make this better!