The Lancer Fanfiction Archive

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FGuess Who's Coming To Diner?

All I can make out is his shape, tall and thin, black against the bright sky from the open door behind him. But I can see enough to make me take notice. That shadow jutting out low on his thigh, that’s a gun butt. Got his fingers, twitchy-like, hovering just over it. He’s turned toward our table now, studying, knows as long as he stays in the doorway we can’t see him like he can see us. I know, because I’ve done that myself.

I don’t like it much, him being here, not with my family sitting with me. Not much I can do, though. Guess he must be satisfied, he’s strolling on into the diner. His spurs are chinking like some kind of a band announcing every step, and all the while he’s looking over the room like we’re all here just for his amusement.

Dresses Mex, but he ain’t. His hair’s same color as Barranca’s mane. About the same length, too, puts me in mind of it right after I’ve combed him.

Shit, I know I seen him before. Down on the border, I seen lots of men I don’t ever want to see again. Kind of blanked their faces out of my head. I turned my life around, don’t need no reminders, things I did just to fill that hole in my belly. Sure as hell don’t need none of ’em recognizing me, not in front of my family. Murdoch don’t know the half of what I done.

Damn, he’s looking over here, smiling like he knows me. That ain’t good.

***

This fellow needs to get on his horse and keep on riding. His kind just spells trouble in a town like this. And it’s not like he’s making any secret of it. That belt snugged low on his hips, fingers tapping at the air over his gun, those showy pants, tight as skin, with those damn conchos strung up and down the sides. Just like Johnny’s. I despise those pants.

Of course, he’s coming on in. He’s a cocky bastard, too, strutting in here, taking his hat off and flinging his hair like a stallion shaking his mane. One thing’s for sure, he hasn’t been keeping any barbers in business.

I hope nobody told him how desperate Lancer is for hands, sent him over to find me. Well, we sure don’t need his kind. Got enough problems with that son of mine. And it really wouldn’t be fair to the other hands. They’d always have to watch their back, even when they slept.

Darn. Here he comes, smile plastered on his face. I’m not hiring.

***

Oh my, who have we here? Certainly don’t see many men like this coming through town. Come on, step on in. He turns, and a sprinkle of lights dazzles me for a second before they dance on past my eyes to shimmer against the far wall. I’ve seen Johnny’s conchos reflect light like that, but only if he’s just polished them. I admit I like him in those pants, but Johnny’s my brother, or, well, practically, and I’d never tell a soul how I look at him sometimes. This man, though, he’s fair game. His conchos gleam like jewels. His gun is just as shiny, and his fingers hang tantalizingly close to it. It’s pretty obvious what he is, and it gives me a tingle.

I wish Murdoch wasn’t here, but it seems like he worries all the time about me going to town alone. There’s no way I can meet a fellow with my family around, always poking their noses into my affairs.

Oh great, I should have known that floozy waitress Juanita would be eying him like a choice steak, smiling with her big teeth. And he’s smiling back. Dratt! I guess that means I’m out of the running before I even got a chance.

Wait a minute. He’s looking at us, coming over, I think he’s smiling at me!

Oh dear, I think I’m smiling too, and that won’t do. If Murdoch ever finds out what I’m thinking I’ll be on the next stage back to Boston.

 

~end~

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