Stories: Alias Smith and Jones

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 A new collection of challenges for 2017... (Posted as they come up)

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Cal

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Posts : 92
Join date : 2015-11-11

20170708
PostA new collection of challenges for 2017... (Posted as they come up)

I love writing for the challenges set each month on Fanfic sights... Sometimes a story short will spark a longer tale ... sometimes they just sit alone... I'll park the ones that haven't found a home yet here... Calx


#1


Missing scenes…. Smiler with a gun :

Canada



“I don’t care how much your head hurts …You gotta drink as much as you can … And you gotta keep it down.”

“Hurrrr … I’m never drinking again … Not like that … That smiling snake... He must have…”

“Less talking …more drinking …Thaddeus… You too Seth…”

“Boys… I don’t think I should be going with you… I got plenty of water right here… and I ain’t exactly on the skinny side… I could hold out … fer maybe… a week… even two… You boys will have a much better chance of crossing that dessert… without me… I’ll slow you down……. Yer know I’m right.“

“No.”

“No.”

“No?”

“No … Seth…we’ve already discussed it… You’d starve… just like it was planned… There’s no choice fer any of us… We all gotta go… and that’s all there is to it... Now drink your fill … and fill that jar… “

---oooOOOooo---

Somewhere in a hot desert

“Canada?”

“Yeah… Canada…  When I’ve killed Bilson …and you got your amnesty… I figure … I’m going to Canada.”

“Canada? ……. Kid? …. Do you know how cold it is … in Canada?”

“Yep ...real cold… freezing … just how I like it!”

“You near died… in Clarence’s cabin … of pneumoni’… Remember?... And you want to go to Canada?”

“Yep … Do you remember …. Long Quin?”

“Yeah … I remember Long Quin… Mad Indian fella… used to run around at the Hole stripped to the waist in Winter …telling us… how it was like summer back where he come from… when it was cold enough t’ freeze spit!“

“Well … He told me about this one time… a ‘Wegian came to the tribe … and got ‘em all lined up …out on the ice … set ‘em to cutting blocks…. You know like fishing holes.”

“Blocks of ice?”

“Yeah ice … Great big freezing blocks of it … hauled it up onto wagons with hooks.”

“Well … What did this ‘Wegian… ? … Is that like a Glaswegian? … like Mac?”

“No … Norwegian… I think … Well …it was one of them ‘Wegian countries… where they got a lot of ice… He got the whole tribe out on the ice… cutting big cold blocks… and wrapping it up in skins … and shipping it back East…. Imagine that… A whole wagon train of ice.”

“What did they want ...with it ...back East?”

“Well … Long Quin said …they used it … in the theatres… to keep the ladies cool…. On hot days.”

“Big blocks of ice… huh…. In Theatres… fer hot ladies?  Long Quin said that…huh?”

“He did… he did…. Cold wet ice… that would do it… that would cool you down.”

“Sure would Kid… We better wake Seth… I’m feeling cooler already…”

“Yeah… Come on…”

---oooOOOooo---

The next night after a very hot day

“Kid? …. Kid?  ...”

“Yeah … what?   ….   ”

“I don’t want the amnesty ...  I don’ wan’ it.”

“Huh? … Y’ gotta Heyes… coz … I’m gonna kill...”

“I know… I know … I’m gonna help … I’m gonna help … kill Bilson… Canada’s looking real good to me now… col’… ‘n’ ice… ‘n’ …snow…”

“Yeah?”

“Yeah… I like the sound … of the ice best… Did Long Quin tell you …anythin’ else …you know …we should know… ‘fore we go to Canada?”

“Erm…. Well… …. Yeah … yeah… He said it was real white… snow everywhere… …. …. …and you can use … frozen rivers… as roads… you just keep walking …”

“Ice roads? … I … I … like the sound of that… ice roads …”

“Yeah …. … …And when you're thirsty … just put snow in your mouth…. Haaa..”

“Seth? … Seth?… time to move again … come on… get …your… skates on… hehe…”

“Awwww… Heh..  Heh… Heyes… pass the warm water …will yer…”

“Nearly all gone…. It ain’t gonna last much longer…”

“Mmmmm … Will he... d’ yer think?”

---oooOOOooo----



#2



Dancing


Kid fidgeted on his blankets, humphed loudly and sighed deeply.  Two minutes later, he fidgeted again, rolling back to his original side.  A minute passed before he sat up and slapped at the dusty under cover of his saddle and settled his head for sleep again.


Heyes waited.


Less than a minute this time.  The shoulders tensed and the rolling began anew.


“Will you cut that out!” Heyes barked across the slow embers of the fire.


A loud humph, and another roll, were his only answer.


Heyes watched.


The tension in the red Henley covered shoulders, was palpable.


Heyes could tell, just from the zinging vibrations in the air, Kid was trying hard not to move again.


This was useless.


On a good day, or rather night, Heyes would have difficulty sleeping.
Oh, he could drop off in exhaustion at the beginning of a night.  Fall down tired, close his eyes, and melt into oblivion, especially since they’d decided to do something as stupid as work for a living.

But…


If he waked before the dawn, and doubt started gnawing at him, burrowing into his brain, getting itself good and lodged in behind his eyes, he knew sleep was vanquished for the night.  Nothing to do but embrace it.  Face his demons, and wrangle with them till dawn.


Kid lost the fight with the fidget, and rolled sighing heavily.


Heyes sighed too.


“What’s got you dancing in your blankets, Kid? Not like you to lose sleep over …anything!”


Heyes didn’t sound unkind.  


Concerned maybe.


Kid groaned.


“S’nothin’” he mumbled. “Go back to sleep… Heyes.”


“Chance would be a fine thing…” laughed Heyes. “How’s a body supposed to sleep … with his partner dancing a jig on the other side of the fire…”


Heyes sat up and stirred the embers to life.  He swirled the dregs in the coffee pot and set them in the most promising spot to warm. He sniffed at his whiskey soaked mug and nodded approvingly.


“Hear… pass me your mug Kid… there’s enough coffee in the pot …”


Kid’s shoulders slumped, defeated.  


With no words, he too sat up and found his rather battered mug.  The sniff detected only a fading promise of whiskey, and was met with a disapproving scowl from the blond gunslinger.


The mug was silently passed.


Heyes doubled up his gloves to get hold of the now scorching pot and divided the spoils.


The hot mug danced between Kid’s protesting fingers, as he touched it to his lips.  As the acidic, molten brown liquid entered his constricting throat, Kid managed to gasp out a thank you, eyes wincing up in shock and voice strangling to a soprano.


Heyes smiled, savouring his own gravy-thick brew.


“Come on… What are partners for… if not to keep you company on long cold nights… when yer can’t sleep … and make you the best coffee this side of Heaven’s gates.”


Kid couldn’t hold it in…


He barked out an explosive laugh, juggling his dancing mug, as at least half its contents warmed his chest and joined the myriad of other undefined stains on the front of the Henley.


All tension left his shoulders in an instant.


“I don’t know Heyes… guess I was just thinking…”


“I thought we had a pretty good arrangement about that…” smirked Heyes.


“Well… maybe… But once it started going ‘round… I couldn’t wrangle it outta my brain….”


“Let me guess…“


Heyes screwed up his face in feigned hard thinking, seeming to consider a possibility for a moment, then rejecting it, and then finding another possibility.


Kid watched the pantomime, Heyes’ expressive face reflected in the red embers.


“Are you fretting on leaving one …beautiful… red head from Old Sally’s stable… because… I told you… that Deputy… he…”


“No!”


Kid’s jackal grin spread from ear, to ear.  


“She sure was pretty though… and… accommodating… very accommodating…”


The sapphire blue eyes twinkled.


“Not her …huh?” said Sherlock.


“You …worried about finding work… in Carsdale?  Coz… you know… I got me enough fer a stake… to see us over a few days… till…”


“No.”


Kid looked sheepish.


“But we ain’t doing anymore fencing… not till my back comes back to the right shape… No more fencing… And no cows… We’ll get us something else… something easier this time… right?”


Heyes ignored the question.


“Not jobs then … either… huh?”


He sipped and savoured.  


Kid watched him disbelievingly.


“Not a woman... not a job… gotta be the amnesty… You worried we’re gonna get jipped by the Governor?”


The way Heyes said it, made Kid realise this was something that had kept Heyes awake many a night.


“Nope… Way I see… We either get it or we don’t… No use fretting on it… Ain’t gonna make the man make up his mind any sooner.”


Heyes scowled looking around their little camp.  


The horses, hearing the humans awake, thought grains might be in the offing.   Heyes’ mare whinnied loudly, and Kid’s gelding stomped at the ground.


Heyes’ eyes narrowed.


“You’re worried that if we get recognised …and have to make a run for it… you’ll have to ditch Ding-a-ling… coz his foots still sore” he proclaimed in triumph.


Kid watched his horse as he lifted the sore hoof and shifted his weight.  


The hoof was still sore.  He would have to replace the horse, if the liniment didn’t start working soon.  He was willing to give it a few more days.  It wasn’t keeping him awake at nights.


“Nar… He’ll be fine… It was that last chase… Those mountains were real hard on their feet… Nar ‘s not that… He’ll be fine. I could …just tell you…”


“No… No… I’ll get it… Not a woman, not a job, not amnesty… Not your horse… I know you’re not hungry… you ate near three rabbits!”


Heyes frowned over at Kid.  


What got Kid rattled?


“You ain’t fretting on…”


Heyes studied his feet.


“Killin’s…” he mumbled.


“Killin’s!” Kid spat back, the rest of the coffee dowsing the nearest flames.


“NO… I ain’t fretting on killin’s.  I ain’t sent one man to his maker… didn’t have cause …to get back there …early …and apologise!  … NOT ONE!”


Heyes swallowed.  


He’d been trying to get his cousin relaxed and sleepy, not all riled and angry.  It was just, he was running out of ideas and that was beginning to rile him too.


“OK…ok… It’s just …after Bilson… you had a little trouble sleeping…”


“I’ve made my peace with God …about Bilson…. I had me a talk with a Preist… in Loadstone…”


Kid saw Heyes’ brows rise in question; a quirk of a smile start to dance on his lips. He bit back his own smile.  Heyes often teased him, about being a people’s philosopher.


“It goes like this.  Every man has his purpose.  Seems… my purpose … is to return some of the worst … back to make their own peace… That’s why I’m here … in a time of lawlessness… and why He put a gun in my hand…”


Kid was nodding this through, like he’d rehearsed it many times in his head.


Heyes was speechless, for just a minute.


“A purpose?” he spluttered eventually, hiding his mirth by sipping at his coffee.


“Yeah… It was something like that…” said Kid defensively.


“Like… Why else would I be given a talent… with a gun… less there was a purpose in it…”


Kid looked confused with his own words.


“Well it made sense …when he said it!”


Heyes nodded as sincerely as he could manage.


“Well that don’t leave a lot…” he said.


“A lot …of what?” said Kid.


“To be keeping you awake … and dancing in your blankets…”
answered Heyes.


“Oh that…”


Kid blew out a long breath.


“My back is protesting real hard… And my neck …won’t ever be straight again… Next time we get a price per post… not per mile…”


“That’s what’s bothering you?” said Heyes in bewilderment.  


“You think we were jipped on the price …fer the fencing…”


Heyes looked disappointed.


“No…“


Heyes smiled again.


“No… My back woke me up… and we were jipped… but …what I was thinking …was… Do you think we got much time left?”


Heyes scowled, confused.


“Time fer what?”


“Everything… Time to live… decent… like other people do.  What if we used it all up … You know …how close we’ve been livin’ it… What if that’s it …There ain’t much left?”


Heyes put down his mug to scrub at his eyes. He harrumphed loudly.


“Kid?”


“Yeah?”


“You know your trouble?”


“What?”


“You got too much time on your hands… When did you ever worry about how much time we’ve got left… before? We been too busy livin’ it …to worry how long it’ll last… I don’t think you’re too well suited… to livin’ decent Kid… Gives you too much time …to do something you just ain’t suited to… thinking!”


Kid chuckled and laid back in his blanket and yawned loudly.


“You asked… I didn’t say it made sense” he stated with another yawn.  


His eyes closed, and he rolled away from the fire.


Heyes sat and watched.


Kid’s shoulders soon began to rise and fall slowly in sleep.


“Purpose?” he whispered to himself.


“Every man …has a purpose?”


He frowned, in deep thought.


Heyes wasn’t getting any more sleep that night.

---oooOOOooo---

Anyone got insight into what Heyes came up with?



#3



Utter Drivel


“Hi love … What you doing?”

“Not much … Thought I’d make an early start on a challenge this month … Left it really late last month …. Nearly missed it!”

“And … How’s it going?”

“Utter drivel! Can’t think of anything … Huuuumph … Where’s a dimpled ex-outlaw when you need one?”

“Heyes?  Haven’t seen him ‘round …fer weeks … Thought you must have done something to upset him.”

“Me! Since when did I upset him … When’s the last time I shot him?  Or had him go back so young his voice went up three octaves?  I’m the nice one...remember … the kind, woosy one … I hardly ever hurt him.”

“Ok … Ok … Just thought … as how we hadn’t seen him for a bit… Can’t Kid help?”

“He’s gone… already.  Think I may have upset him …with a vegan lunch … He said something about heading out West fer a bit … I think he meant fer a steak… hehehe…. Anyway… This needs Heyes’ genius.  Its tricksy.”

“Ring ‘round the gang … Someone’s feeding him …you can be sure.”

“Yeah … yeah … OK … Good idea.”

BIRRRRP BIRRRP BEEP



Allo allo… I am so sorry … MoulinP can’t come to zee phone right now … Listen very carefully … I will say zis only once …. Leave a message after zer…


BEEEEP


“Hi… Moulin … It’s Cal …. I was wondering … is Heyes there? Could you get him to ring me … it’s about this utter drivel I’m writing … it needs some genius input … Well … If you do happen to…”

CLUNK


“Allo? Cal? Is zat you?”

“Oh…. Hi Moulin… Yeah … I’m looking for Heyes…”

“Oh… Zis is terrible … You ‘ave just missed ‘im … ‘e ‘as been…. ‘ow you say…. ‘elping me … wiz… um… zer crumpets… er… zer baking of zer crumpets….”

“Oh … That’s nice… Did he say where he was headed?”

“Well… He said ‘e thought …Kelpie …would like to share in zee crumpets…”

“Kelpie? Silver kelpie…. Ok …Thank you”

“Au revoir“

CLUNK





“Any luck love?”

“No … Moulin thinks he’s heading to Kelpie’s… for crumpets…”

“Crumpet with Kelpie … Yes… That sounds like Heyes.  I been thinking…”

“I thought we had a pretty fair arrangement about that…”

“Ha … ha … Save it for the page … I’ve been thinking … Didn’t you have Kid, give Heyes a pretty good thump, not so long ago?”

“Well …yes… It was necessary … for the story … Heyes knows I don’t just thump him for nothing.  You think he’s sulking?”

“Point is… you didn’t thump him … Kid did.”

“Huh?”

“Kid has a thump like a mule … I remember … “

“Oh, come on… I thought you were over that … You know Kid was just being gallant … He didn’t know you’d cut your head open, playing footie, the day of our first date … and it was your blood all over me, after we slow danced… He thought…”

“I know … I know … But I’m just saying… Kid’s got a hell of a thump and Heyes isn’t going to forget that in a hurry… And you wrote it.”

“Perhaps I should apologise?”

“Perhaps you should.”



BIRRRRP BIRRRP BEEP



Ouch eye …. Hallooo … I’m afraid Silver Kelpie can’t come to the phone just now… I’m away busy … wait for the…


BEEEP


“Oh … Hello … Kelpie ... it’s Cal… I’m looking for Heyes… I think I may owe him an apology… and I need his help with some utter drivel… I’m trying to write… Moulin said…”

CLUNK


“HALLLOOOOO…. Cal? Is that you, yourself there… looking for Heyes… What makes you…mmm….mmmm…. uum …..What makes you think …he’s been here, Dear?”

“Kelpie... Are you eating crumpet?”

“CRUMPET? … The very thought, Dear… What’s that Moulin been saying about me an’ Heyes?”

“Oh… nothing ... nothing at all … it’s just, I was just hoping to have a word with him…”

“Well… he was here, Dear…. Earlier … But he heard Distant Drums … and he said he had to fly… I’ve got to fly too Dear … sorry…. I just had this utterly fantastic idea for a story… pop right into my head… Goodbye Dear!”

CLUNK


“Oh … That’s nice … Oh … You’ve gone…”



“Any luck with Kelpie? Here… I’ve brought you a nice cup of tea… and a biscuit… vegan… just like you like it when you’re writing… Are you writing?”

“Not so you’d notice.  Oh … that’s so thoughtful of you… Don’t suppose you got any ideas this month? … You were brilliant helping me write Harry Briscoe Rides Again.”

“Yeah … it was my idea that the older partner in the law firm already investigated Crooke, wasn’t it?”

“Yes!”

“No.”

“No …. what?”

“No … no new ideas…. I’m utterly clueless… Why don’t you try NebraskaWildfire? … Got to be worth a try… Now Heyes ’as been East of the Mississippi … there’s no stopping him.”

“Guess you’re right…  I could really do with his help… What I’ve written so far … IS UTTERLY DREADFUL!”


BIRRRRP BIRRRP BEEP (Not another answer phone… Doesn’t anyone just pick up any more?)

Boom ba boom boom … Boom ba boom boom … Shucks… Hi … This is NBW’s phone… We’re kinda busy right now… um ….  DD and NBW out…


BEEEEEP



“Hello? … Hello? Is that Distant Drums… I thought I called Nebraska Wildfire… Sorry …. This is Cal …. I was wondering if either of you had seen Heyes?”

CLUNK


“Cal?... Cal?... Is that you Honey?... Hi…”

“Heyes?”

“Yeah… it’s me… I’m kinda… tied up right now… But I’ll ring you back… soon as I can … Bye!”

CLUNK


“Oh … Bye…”



“Well?”

“Says he’s tied up…”

“Really? Hahaha …. Did I hear drumming?”

“Yes… I think DD was there too…”

“Really??? Hahahahaha…”

“You’re really not helping you know… I need inspiration… it’s utterly maddening…”

“You know you can always rely on RosieAnnie…”

“OK… But I just may not be able to think of anything this month…”


BIRRRRP BIRRRP BIRRRRP BIRRRP…
(Come on… come on… at least it didn’t go to answerphone)

“Hello… RosieAnnie here… Who’s that?”

“Hi Rosie… it’s Cal… I’m having a little trouble…”

“Excuse me Cal… Just one second…
 
HEY KID… COULD YOU MAKE SURE EVERYONE HAS NIBBLES… I THINK YOU MISSED GIN16 and SKYKOMISH… THERE OVER BY THE DVD COLLECTION WITH HELENWEST AND GRINGA… AND KID… WILL YOU FIX KEAYS AND HANNAHEYES A DRINK… BOY… DID I KNOW YOU’D GET A KICK OUT OF THAT ONE…

Cal? …Cal? You still there?”

“Yeah… yeah… I’m still here… Kid’s with you then… and the whole gang?”

“Yeah… Plenty of room for the rest of you… If you got nothing better to do… get yourselves over here … I was just ringing Moulin and Kelpie… You got Heyes with you?”

“No…. no… but he’s ringing me back … soon I think… He’s with DistantDrums and NeBraskaWildfire.”

“Well… what you waiting fer… Round ‘em up …and get yourself over here… If we’re lucky … we might persuade Kid not to sing us a song…

HEY I HEARD THAT!

What do yer say?”

“I say… Thank you… that would be UTTERLY BRILLIANT…

---oooOOOooo---
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A new collection of challenges for 2017... (Posted as they come up) :: Comments

I really liked Dancing. Good quick story. Just the way I like them! The last story was different. I think you managed to included everyone. Good writing.
Aw thank you MST3K... Glad you liked Dancing... That was a "write it as it was played out in front of me" piece...all in one go... Love it when that happens... So... I don't know why Kid was worried about how much time they had left or what Heyes would have decided his purpose in life was... I agree ... sometimes better to leave the thing short... and let the reader do some of the work ...LOL.

The first one came from a snippet I heard on the radio about early attempts at air conditioning in New York Theatres in 1880.... Large blocks of ice in the auditorium in order to keep the ladies cool...

The last one... um... no excuses... you should see the state of the inside of my head! Good job I have a very understanding husband...
 

A new collection of challenges for 2017... (Posted as they come up)

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