Fiction: Gaming

“I want to make money and visit with real whores. As the teamster said, life’s short.” Fred gulped his last drink and down the road they went. Quiet, almost sweet, music played somewhere within the gaming hall. “I’ll wait out here, Fred.” “Oh, no you won’t! Don’t be such a prig. Play one hand,” Fred…

Fiction: Blood Brothers

“The night is running along and I want a good time—for your sake—to educate you. I can’t stand you leading such a morbid, saintly life,” Fred groaned. Buck was disappointed at the stables. With most of the army out looking for Geronimo, the stable owner feared for his safety and ordered that no one be…

Fiction: A Doctor’s Mistakes

Graham wiped his eyes. “That watch … the one I gave you … it was for Nathan—my younger brother first — during the war. You are the light of the world like a city on a mountain … Nathan was the light of my family. Something about him—we could all love him without embarrassment—he was…

Fiction: Honest Appraisals

A soldier poked his head in to the coach to greet the Crenshaw family when they came to a stop. He scanned the group of strangers. Opening the door, the soldier held out his hand to Buck’s sister Meg. “Allow me to help you, miss.” Despite her best efforts to appear unmoved, she giggled, blushed,…

Fiction: The Only Thing Left

“Then I’ll be eternally damned, right?” William asked with a sneer. Kenyon said nothing. “But Buck, who admits to almost killing someone, is saved. Well, that’s some trick.” Kenyon thought a moment. “It’s interesting that you feel within your rights to judge and require certain behaviors—say from your father—but it annoys you that God, who…

Fiction: Stealing Salvation

Buck cupped Thankful’s wet cheeks in his hands. “Poor you, you’re as messed up as the rest of us Crenshaws, but I love you for it. Don’t cry, it’s all right. I’m so glad now that I’m here for you.” “Oh, Buck, it means so much to me that you don’t hate me. I’ve been…

Fiction: Purity

Buck sat tucked back in bed, trying to read his small Bible while swatting gnats. William, with the occasional sideways glance at his roommate, smoked cigarette after crummy cigarette, wondering how things had gone so wrong. How had Thankful ever loved him? And how had he not seen it? Soon the doctor strode in, leading…

Fiction: Freedom

“Thankful is a uniform chaser,” William said. “Now, you should take that back. Thankful’s a romantic and a good girl, and I’ll help her all I can.” “So I guess you’ll be taking my spot on Mr. Kenyon’s team.” “Me?” Buck chuckled. “My cartography skills are only fair to middling. Nothing on the wonderful maps…

Fiction: A Race and a Rescue

William wasn’t used to such high-quality drink, and it affected him strangely. He pulled out his Bowie knife—passed down from his Uncle Simon’s old things—and started for the mountains where a band of Apache camped. “Bill, what are you playing at?” Fahy asked. “Apache tizwin. I heard it’s good drink. I’m gonna try it.” “How?…

Fiction: Stuck

Fahy caught Buck’s unfriendly look. “What’s the matter? Has something happened to Thankful?” “She’s fine under the circumstances,” Buck said in his strongest voice. “I know she’s upset over my being here—but it’s the army.” Buck said nothing more. He’d been sworn to secrecy by Thankful. “The cadet brought us a whole case of fine…