"Me?" Princeton glared at the boy from behind his glasses. "You think I told her that Reid murdered Sabe?"
Cade nods, "T'was what I said right? Was I speaking too low? Did I stutter?"
Princeton gives a low and slow chuckle, "Well well well… have you ever considered that your mother is a lunatic? Why would I say such a thing?"
Traveler agrees, "I- you never told me this Cade. Punch-Out Princeton? He would never do such a thing."
Cade frowns, his blood reaching a boiling point. He was beginning to fume, no one speaks about his mother that way. No one.
"My mother is not mad." he retorts, scathingly.
Princeton smiles, trying to soften out the verbal blow. "Quite the contrary my boy, she was filled with grief and needed someone to blame, and lied about it. She was all hussy when I went to see her. I tried to offer my consul, and it worked for a while."
"Traveler…" Cade turns to Traveler, asking if he believed this with his glossy eyes.
Traveler leaned far back in his seat, not knowing what to tell him. "Now see, I never knew your mom really well. But when I met her she seemed alright."
"It's grief." Princeton repeats, to add to his point. "It does things to one's psyche. And too bad too, Theodora was a lovely woman."
Cade sighed, turning his gaze down. "I- I'm sorry."
"You should be." Princeton states, "I am too."
"It's just I never thought-" Cade shut his mouth, not even sure of what to say anymore. He was heartbroken. He didn't know what he was trying to get at with accusing Princeton but it felt right in the moment. Perhaps he was just trying to place blame onto someone.
Princeton nearly sneered in response. "But it doesn't seem like you think at all, boy." he replied coldly.
Traveler wasn't privy to Princeton's scathing remarks and tried to cool down the situation by being the voice of reason. He wasn't used to being put into that position because that was Sabe's job. Sabe was the heart of the trio, he was the one who came between Traveler and Princeton's arguing.
It only made Traveler's head pound dull with grief and annoyance.
The man didn't want to take any sides but it was evident that he was here for Cade as he placed a gentle hand on the boy's shoulder. "That was uncalled for Princeton." Traveler states. "The boy is grieving too. He jus' needs some closure is all."
Princeton sniffed, "I don't know how he's going to get it from me."
"Well you don't hafta be rude about it." Traveler interjected with his dark brows knit together.
Princeton stood up, causing the table to push away, scraping against the floor. "He just accused me of lying!"
Traveler jabbed a finger toward his friend. "Hey, no need for that." he says, trying hard to stay calm. "Maybe we can figure something out. After all I was the one who was accused of murdering Sabe."
"I don't know, did you?" Princeton questions, officially taking it too far.
Now it was Traveler's turn to bolt out of his seat as his chair was thrown back. Everyone in the bar started to look at them as they made a scene, murmuring amongst one another.
"You think I murdered Sabe? I wanted all three of us to get out of that building safely, you know that!" Traveler shouted. His calm demeanor was gone now and even Cade shook in his boots. "I loved him like a brother and I loved you too. I would have gladly died in his place."
"It was me." Princeton states in a low tone, causing Traveler and Cade to freeze.
"It was me dammit!" Princeton screamed in admittance. "The job was a sham, I was meant to kill both of you! But like the vermin that you are, you survived." Princeton practically spat in Traveler's face, effectively breaking his heart and his trust.
Traveler stuttered. "W-why?"
"Why?" Princeton bites. "Because I'm a coldblooded pirate, that's why. The pirate problem here, it's all me."
While Traveler stood petrified, Cade took action and drew up his sword. "You murderer." he hissed. "You killed my father, lied to my mother… now you taste my blade!"
Cade tried to take a swing at the man but Princeton blocked with his large gauntlets, effectively tossing Cade back into another table and breaking it. The people who sat at it scattered, causing panic to erupt.
Snapping out of it, Traveler grabbed his guns in preparation to fight his now former friend.
"Don't you touch him!" he shouted as he blasted away at Princeton's gauntlets. At that moment he wanted so badly to kill this man we're he stood for being a traitor and hurting Cade so deeply. But he didn't want to stoop down to that level no matter how much he wanted to. Without a father Cade needed a role model, and Traveler opted to fill that role.
He would have kept grappling with Princeton but a part of him tore away and looked over at Cade to see if the boy was all right. He groaned and tried to pry himself off of the table as blood dripped down his nose. Cade might have been alright but the best thing to do was get out of there.
But Princeton wasn't going to let them go that easily, he may as well finish the job here and kill Reid as he intended.
Princeton brought down swipes of fury on Traveler, breaking some of the cowboy's ribs in the process.
Once more Traveler was put at a disadvantage in having weapons meant for range but that didn't stop him. The name Two-Bit came from his cleverness and he was going to prove exactly how.
Above them there was a low hanging crystal chandelier and with a few well placed shots, it could be taken down. All Traveler had to do was get away before it came down on him too. In the bottom of his heart he knew he wasn't supposed to die this way and he couldn't leave Cade alone in this world. The boy deserved that much.
One of Princeton's blows had knocked Traveler onto his backside. Every bone in his body pulsed in protest, wanting him to stop moving and give in. Traveler scooted back on his elbows at Princeton prepared a final devastating blow that would pretty much snap Traveler's spine in two or by the very least, stop his heart. In the fleeting moment, Traveler aimed his gun toward the ceiling and shot at it, effectively bringing down the chandelier. It landed on top of Princeton, giving Traveler time to check on Cade.
Cade gently groaned as Traveler practically crawled to his side.
"Ya don' look so good champ." Traveler said, grabbing one of his arms.
Cade scoffed. "Could say the same for you… old man."
"C'mon kiddo, let's get outta here, hm?" Traveler propped up Cade on him so that they were leaning on each other for stability.
Together they shamble toward the exit, noticing that Princeton was gone, much to Cade's dismay.
Taking note of his scowl, Traveler lets him know that they'll get him next time. Even if Traveler refrained from wanting to kill the man, it felt like the right words Cade needed to hear.
Next time is another day.