Previous posts from our string Short Story Saturday may be viewed under the category fittingly named, Short Stories.
Now we will continue as you’re all dying to read the next part.
She didn’t even have time to scream. It was all over so quickly.
(JK JK JK JK I’m kidding I’m kidding…)
Bethany flailed and her hand caught on the window. Her entire body weight pulled her down towards death and she started to cry from the pain. She reached up and grasped onto the train with her other hand and tried to pull herself up. She could feel her skirts swirling and twisting themselves around her legs, and beneath her feet, she knew very well there was a chasm calling her name. She heard a gunshot, and then the outlaw was pulling himself out the window too. “Are you CRAZY?” Beth wailed. “We’re both going to DIE!”
Without answering, he wrenched her hands off the frame and Beth knew, right then, she was going to die. And it was all her fault. She shouldn’t have trusted him.
But he pulled her up and set his arm across the top of the train, screaming at her to get a move on.
Bethany’s glass-splintered boots scraped the side of the raging train as she tried to pull herself up. And as she did so, the air was filled with an ethereal screech. Bethany couldn’t believe she wasn’t deaf afterward. She saw the bandit smirk at her, and he clambered onto the roof.
Bethany was quick to follow after she found her footing. She went up to him from behind and reached out to wring his neck. “On three, we jump.”
Beth stopped. “What?”
“Three.” Skipping all previous numbers, he took a running leap, flew off the train and almost fell into the gaping canyon. But of course, he landed safely on the earth and not in the giant hole. Beth had about two seconds to contemplate this before she found herself in midair as well. She had jumped off.
But when she landed, it was all over. And it had happened so quickly.
When she woke up, she felt a stinging pain traveling all throughout her body. Her friendly (*cough*) bandit was waving his hat in her face and watching her with a stony expression. “At last.” He grumbled, seeing her come to.
Bethany groaned, clutching first her wrist, then her side, and finally her foot which caused her to get glass shards in her hand. She cried out. This had no effect on him whatsoever.
“You’re awake. Now we can leave.” He stood up and laid a hand on his horse which so magically happened to be there.
Beth sat up and stared at the steed in wonder. “How-?”
“We have ways.” He held out a hand, offering to help her up.
Bethany scowled at him, beginning to pry her boots off. The outlaw withdrew his hand and scowled right back at her. He pulled himself up and onto his faithful animal and waited for her. Beth swore her mouth off and threw her footwear into the saddlebags, pulling herself up sidesaddle and began an examination of her feet for glass. The dude clicked to his horse and they set off opposite the tracks. After a period of silence he spoke up, “I did my job. You’re still learning.”
It was quiet again. Bethany cleaned up her shoes and put them on. They were stained with blood. She twisted her hand around and grumbled softly, “Sprained.”
It was a really awkward, silent ride. They rode until they couldn’t see the tracks anymore. They rode onward when they saw nothing but hard-packed earth and cacti. They rode ever onward until they could see a looming shadow rise up before them. Bethany glared at it and come to the realization that it was the exact town they had left earlier. Deciding that she was going to give her partner the silent treatment, Beth asked no questions.
He rode right into the town, past the saloon, and stopped in front of the jail. Bethany grew worried and wondered if this was some kind of a trick. Perhaps a wicked blow from one criminal to another. “I have unfinished business to settle.” The bandit told her in a serious tone. In fact, it was as seriously serious as Beth had ever heard him speak to her. “Alright. Be quick about it.” Beth murmured.
He gave her a sly smile, but something about his eyes told Beth something was amiss. “I’m serious,” Bethany added.
“As am I.” He disappeared through the door.
Bethany waited anxiously. She turned the horse around and saw a speck of dust approaching on the horizon. She watched it for want of something better to do. It grew and grew, taking the form and shape of a teenager.
A teenager Beth had met before.
Bethany grew hot with blazing anger, making up her mind never to forgive him for the humiliation he had caused her on the train.
And the jail behind her exploded with the sound of gunfire. “You’ve killed my son!” An unfamiliar voice screamed.
Gunfire answered gunfire, and Bethany was face to face with her nemesis.
TO BE CONCLUDED
Next time on Short Story Saturday…