I stood in the middle of the dusty street and watched as the prison wagon carted Sarah Gentry away. I was a fool to believe that a woman like her could ever love me. She only used me to carry out a scheme to kill her new husband. It had almost worked. I was only seconds away from hanging when Kid and Lou had ridden into town with proof of my innocence, and the Gentry's duplicity.

I could feel the weight of Kid and Lou's eyes upon my back. I knew they were worried about me. I appreciated their concern, but I wish I had not agreed to let them accompany me into town. I was not in the mood to talk to anyone. As if he was privy to my inner thoughts, Kid spoke." Are you okay?"

"No, but I will be." I said honestly, turning and walking past them toward Sundancer.

I mounted him and turned him toward the PX station, only to change direction a few moments later. I needed some time to clear my thoughts and I did not need an audience to watch me do it. I headed Sundancer toward the swimming hole, a favorite place of all us riders. Once there, I dismounted and set Sundancer to grazing while I settled down for a long spell of pondering.

I was never one to trust easily, and Sarah had fooled me in the worse way. The whole experience had taught me to guard my feelings even more closely than I already did. I would not be too quick to let another woman get under my skin. I had been fooled once, and I would not let it happen again.

Email Wendy