The Lancer Fanfiction Archive

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Barb A

 

 

FFur-st Impressions

500-Word Drabble for Summer Challenge #1: First Impressions

 

Oh, it's always c'mon Mike. Do that Mike. No, not there, Mike. Well what am I supposed to do? I'm still learnin'. I'm city-born and bred after all--that is, if you can call Morro Coyo a city.

The first Lancer I met was Johnny. I remember that boy ridin' into town on that yellow horse, with its mane flying every which way. A balled up bunch of nerves that kid. Always moving, always with a ready smile. That's how Johnny finagled me into working the Lancer spread in the first place, by flashing that smile and giving me a helping hand up off the dusty street. He even bought lunch that afternoon after helping to get me cleaned up--he’s a good boy.

The same day Johnny invited me over to the ranch was the first time I met the “Patron”. Good God! I didn't know men came so tall! It was like looking up at a big oak tree. He had to bend down to shake hands proper. It makes a body feel right puny standing beside him. He's got a real friendly way about him, though. You could see it in his eyes once you got past his bellows and frets. I reckoned him and me might just get along after all. He told Johnny to get me set up in the bunkhouse because I was one of the hired help. That was okay--you wouldn't find me in a house that grand anyway. The boy fitted me out like a king with a blanket and pillow and a few other things.

It went real good for a few days, then a stranger rode in after dark. I was doin' my perimeter check that night around the barn and I didn't nearly see him until it was too late. The kid was ripcord lean and looked like he'd been drug through the mud. The shoulder of his shirt was ripped clear down to the elbow. Oh, and was he pissed! Muttering some such things about cows and cursing poorly stocked line shacks. I never did hear all the rest. You may judge me a coward but I like to think I know when to retreat. And that's what I did that night. Besides, it looked like he belonged to Lancer, puttin' his horse away like he was. I hid out in the bunkhouse that night and learned later that the kid was the Patron's older son.

I have to admit that life has gotten a whole lot sweeter since that very first day I arrived at the Lancer spread. Oh and that older son? He's all right. Yessir, we hit it right off. In fact, me and him's going back to that line shack tomorrow to see what we can do ‘bout those cantankerous cows. He thinks that with a few more lessons, I have all the makings of one real fine cattle dog and I can only agree with him on that.

 

~end~

Jun/’08

 

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