CONVERSING WITH AL
Disclaimer: I own nothing. HBO and David Milch do. Take anything official up with them.
Summary: Sol Star wasn't the only person who played a major role in Seth Bullock's life during his time in Montana and afterwards. This is a continuation of her story...
Due to an apparent change in the status of his personal relationship with Allie, Sheriff Bullock suddenly isn't as upstanding a member of society as some would like. Al Swearengen decides to take it upon himself to let Mitchell know things have not changed for the better since her arrival in Deadwood, at least as far as he's concerned. SEQUEL TO THE FOURTH TYPE OF WOMAN & A PALE IMITATION & SETTING THINGS RIGHT. One-shot. AU. Complete.
A/N: If you are reading a story about the TV series "Deadwood" and don't know this... I'm not sure how that could happen... but, just in case... by the very nature of the television show from which the story is derived, this story contains (some would say excessive) profanity, adult situations, adult themes, etc. Be warned. Also, this story slightly deviates from Deadwood after the first episode of Season Two, but tries to stay as close as possible to canon both before and after that point. Any recognizable dialog that is not an original creation is courtesy of one of season two's brilliant episodes, albeit slightly modified so as to fit the introduction of Allie's character into the new story line. The events beginning with Season 3 are completely ignored.
Sol Star walked into the hardware store, surprised to see Bullock at work near the counter. Taking off his hat, Sol nodded as he hung up his jacket.
Bullock looked up and smiled. "Morning, Sol."
"Open early?" Sol asked casually.
Bullock looked up again and shrugged. "Suppose so."
"How's Allie?" Sol inquired.
Bullock had to fight the smile which immediately came to his face as pure reflex at the mention of Allie's name. "She's well."
"Well enough to be left alone?"
Bullock nodded. "She threatened to shoot me if I continued to 'fuckin' hover about' as she so eloquently put it."
Sol nodded in turn. "Well, you have been spending a lot of time alone together."
"She's recuperating, Sol," Bullock protested.
Sol raised a hand, "I know, I know," his friend said. "I'm just saying that since Doc Cochrane stopped making his daily visits out to see her, it's been three weeks, and people have been talking."
Anger immediately flashed in Bullock's eyes. "Who's been talking?"
Sol shrugged. "Nobody important. Just the point in being that people know that Allie's a lot better of than she was, and they notice you still spend all your time with her and when you're not, you walk around camp different."
"Different how?" Seth asked.
Sol shook his head. "I don't know, Seth. If I didn't know better, I'd… say you were in love."
"Are you?" Sol prodded.
"Am I what?" Bullock asked as he closed the ledger and placed it back in its place on the counter.
"Are you in love?"
"In love?" Seth responded.
Sol said in frustration, "Yes, are you in love?"
"Jesus, Seth, would you quit answering my questions with more fuckin' questions and just answer the damn question?" Sol said suddenly.
Raising his eyebrows, Seth pointed at Sol as he reached for his hat and coat. "Whether I am or not, it's no one's goddamn business but my own." He finished pulling on his coat and adjusted his hat before nodding and said, "I've got some calls to make about camp that I've been putting off for long enough. I need to talk with Charlie, too, while I think of it. I'll be back before lunch, okay?"
Sol nodded. "Whatever you say, Seth." Watching his friend depart, Sol repeated wearily, "Whatver you say."
Al Swearengen continued to watch various people go about their business from the Gem's balcony. He watched with interest as he saw Bullock emerge from the hardware store and head about his daily business.
Shaking his head, Swearengen nodded to Dan Dority who stood at his left. "Self-deceiving cocksucker I am, I thought when America took us in, Bullock would prove a fucking resource…look at him, striding out like some randy maniac Bishop. Sheriff! About his duties to the camp, huh?"
"Looks like he's doing what he should be doing, Al," Dan responded as he recrossed his arms and nodded. "But then again this is the first fuckin' morning I've seen him in camp longer than a few minutes."
"Been up at that fuckin' house of his caring for that 'ill' girl, hmmm?" Al asked Dan.
Dority shrugged. "So they say."
"Horseshit," Al responded. "If he isn't fuckin' that cunt, then I'm a rat-assed baboon's uncle."
He nodded at Dority. "Those Yankton cocksuckers are trying to pull one over on us given all this commissioner bullshit, and that cocksucker Bullock hasn't done one goddamn thing that he was supposed to of because he's all of a sudden discovered what fuckin' a piece of snatch signifies." He paused, shaking his head, "Either way, it's not good for business, Dan, not good at all."
"What do you want me to do?"
"Find the cunt. I want to talk to her. Bullock's so fuckin' cocksure, won't get no where with him but in a goddamn fist fight which I would like to avoid if at all possible. Maybe if he won't listen to reason, she will," Al said.
Dority nodded. "When?"
"Now, while he's in camp. Go find her and bring her back," Al said.
Nodding, Dority said, "Shouldn't be too hard a job." He pointed at a horse which was riding in from the far end of camp. "Look familiar?"
Al smiled as he said, "How fuckin' convenient." Nodding again, he said, "Go give her my message."
Bullock knew he was being watched. His eyes came to focus on Al Swearengen who was speaking to Dan Dority on the balcony of the Gem Saloon.
Looking up, Bullock stared for a moment with suspicious evident in his glance. Dan Dority then disappeared inside before Al locked eyes on Bullock.
"What is it?" Swearengen called down to Bullock. "You been taken by a vision, Sheriff?"
Bullock continued to level his gaze at Swearengen. Al pointed down at him, "Whatever the fuck your problem is, Bullock, you do not want to be staring like that at me."
A commotion to Bullock's right forced him to break his stare. Tom Nuttall came up, breathless as he said, "Sheriff, you've got to come quick."
Bullock looked back and forth between Swearengen and Nuttall as the other man continued, "It's only Bummer Dan. But I...I think he's killed."
Swearengen smirked as he called down, "How fortuitous, Bullock, that trouble seems to have waited until you had the fuckin' time for your lawful duties." He paused before he added, "Lucky trouble didn't jump out earlier when you weren't here, huh, Bullock? Might have found you mid-thrust at other business."
Anger flared again as Bullock leveled his gaze at Swearegen. "You be where I can find you."
Swearengen shrugged. "I ain't going no place."
Allowing himself to follow Nuttall, Bullock turned and headed towards the other man's saloon, despite the fact that he knew Swearengen's comment was directed at one person...and somehow, someway, Seth knew that Swearengen was talking about Allie. To say that he saw red… well, would have been an understatement.
Allie slowly made her way into the hardware store. Sol smiled when he saw her, somewhat uncharacteristically clothed in a dress that hung loosely about her thin frame. While most of her bruises had healed, and she no longer required bandages or a sling for her arm, Allie did limp just a bit. Cochrane had taken the ankle cast off only a few days before, and Sol could tell she was treating it a bit gingerly.
Nodding at her, Sol said by way of greeting, "Morning, Allie."
"Hello, Sol," Allie said.
Glancing about, Sol said, "You just missed Seth."
"I'm not here to see, Seth," Allie said. "I wanted to speak with you if you have a moment."
Somewhat surprised, Seth nodded. "Care to sit down?"
Allie nodded. Sol moved a chair out from behind the counter so she didn't have to walk as far. Sitting down, she looked up with a smile as she said, "Thanks."
"No problem," Sol said. "How are you feeling?"
Allie smiled. "Better."
"So what brings you into camp?" Sol asked. "How might I be of assistance?"
"I was thinking about a business venture that I would need some help with if I were to undertake it," Allie said carefully. "But, I wouldn't want certain third parties involved. That's why I thought I might be able to commission you to act as my agent in certain matters…."
"Oh?" Sol said with a raised eyebrow. "What did you have in mind, exactly?"
"Well, I..." Allie had opened her mouth and was about to continue speaking with she suddenly saw Sol's demeanor change. He frowned as a shadow fell upon the entry way of the shop. Allie turned her head to see Dan Dority standing just inside the store's entryway.
"Mr. Dority," Sol said, coming forward to meet the newcomer. "Something I can help you with?"
Dority shook his head slowly. "No, my business isn't with you."
Sol nodded. "Well, Trixie's not here. She isn't supposed to meet me for our lessons for another hour or so..."
Dority shook his head again. "This ain't got nothing to do with Trixie, neither." He paused and pointed at Allie, "I've got a message for you."
Standing up purposefully, Allie bit her lip to keep from wincing as she adjusted her stance to a defensive posture. "And what's that?" Allie responded as she put her hands on her hips.
"You're wanted at the Gem," Dan said simply. "Mr. Swearengen wants a word."
Allie frowned. "About what?"
Dan shrugged. "You're going to have to take that up with him."
"When?" Allie prodded.
Dority narrowed his eyes, taking a look at her. "Let's just say Al's not the type to be kept fuckin' waitin'."
Allie nodded. "I'll be there directly."
Dority nodded, tipping his hat to her before leaving.
As soon as Dority left, Allie immediately collapsed into her chair letting out a deep breath. "God damn foot!" she cursed. She paused before she muttered, "And it just had to be on the day when I had to wear this fuckin' dress."
Looking up at Sol, she said, "I'm gonna need your help."
"How's that?" Sol asked. "You want me to go see what Swearengen wants?"
Allie shook her head furiously.
"I'm going to need you to help me get a few things...my attire is not the best for walking into the Gem Saloon for a meeting with Al Swearengen. If I go in wearing a dress, I doubt I'll get two steps up the stairs before someone tries to fuck me," Allie sighed.
"What do you want me to do?"
"I need some proper clothes, Sol," Allie said. "Most of my clothing was either lost in the attack or in no condition to be worn… or it's all the way back at the fuckin' house. FUCK!" She yelled in frustration.
Sol nodded. "You can borrow some of mine..."
Allie laughed. "No offense, Sol, but I think I'm going to need something a bit more intimidating."
Sol shook his head. "Seth might have left something upstairs. I can look."
"Go quick," Allie nodded. "In the meantime, I'm going to take one of these pair of shor tboots and try and fix my ankle to see if I can walk in them."
Sol departed, leaving Allie to her business. A short time later, Allie was rolling up the waistband of a pair of black trousers that Sol had brought her. Rolling up the sleeves of one of Seth's white shirts, Allie completed dressing by lacing up the brown boot into which she had stuffed her throbbing foot. In the meantime, Allie waited for Sol to return from his errands. When he returned to the shop, he presented Allie with his findings, a manageable brown leather jacket and a pair of suspenders. Tossing them to Allie, she nodded. "Thanks."
"No go on the hat or gunbelt," Sol said. "But," he said as he walked around the counter and reached into a box. "This might take care of the problem of a gun."
He smiled as he pulled out an ivory handled pistol. Allie's eyes light up. "Where did you get that?"
"It was a part of what Charlie salvaged from your attack site. Seth set it aside while you were convalescing, and it just hadn't really come up before now."
Reaching for it, Allie took the pistol and fingered it lovingly. "You have no idea how much better I feel just holding this again."
She smiled before she said, "But, I still don't have a lot of ammo. And, I'm sure as hell not going into the Gem with my gun tucked into my fuckin' waistband. That's as good as being unarmed. Might as well have a fuckin' target painted on my goddamn forehead."
"Why would you might as well have a target painted on your goddamn forehead?" a familiar voice interrupted.
"Fuck," Allie cursed on her breath, turning around to face Seth. He was standing in the entryway, watching her with interest as he removed his hat.
"And further more, what the hell are you doing in camp, dressed like that, when you're supposed to be off your fuckin' feet?" Bullock asked.
Allie shook her head. "None of your goddamn business, Seth."
Bullock looked to Star for an explanation. "Sol?"
Waving his hands in supplication, Sol said, "This has nothing to do with me. You two discuss things amongst yourselves." He then turned and trudged up the stairs to the office above.
"Allie?" Bullock prompted.
"What?" she responded.
"What's going on?" Bullock asked.
Allie waved her hands off. "Nothing."
"Doesn't look like nothing," Seth said.
Allie shrugged. "Just have some business I need to take care of, Seth. That's all."
"And what business is that? Tell me, and I'll take care of it for you," Seth offered.
Shaking her head, Allie said, "Somehow I don't think that would be a very good idea."
Bullock moved close to Allie, smiling that smile of his, before he said, "Would you please tell me what the fuck is going on, Allie?"
"Nothing," she said again.
"Nothing?" Bullock repeated.
Allie nodded. Seth nodded, taking another step towards her. Pulling her back to the shadows of the shop, he wrapped his arms around her.
"Seth, don't do that," Allie protested.
"Why?" Bullock said. "You won't tell me what I want to know, and since I can't exactly extract the information from you as I would normally if you were anyone else in camp, I see this is going to take a more delicate form of persuasion…."
He began to nuzzle her neck.
"Sol is just upstairs..." Allie said softly, as Bullock pulled her tighter against him.
"So?" Seth questioned. "It's not as if I am going to nuzzle his neck to find out what I want to know..."
"People might see," Allie protested again as Bullock caressed her breasts.
"I don't care," Seth said.
He moved to kiss her again, leaving Allie flushed and suddenly a bit dizzy.
"You are so not playing fair," Allie murmured.
"Then tell me what I need to know," Seth laughed.
"If I do that," Allie moaned, "you're going to do something awful hasty."
"Me? Hasty?" Bullock said with a smile. "Never. Now come on, tell me."
Bullock ran his hands under her jacket, and he had loosened a couple of buttons on her shirt as he commented, "Seems as if I've seen this shirt before."
"You have," Allie moaned again. "It's yours. I'm borrowing it."
He bit down gently on her ear, and continued to use his hands to do things to her up and down the length of her torso, "God damn, you are such a bastard, Seth Bullock," Allie murmured.
"Tell me," he teased again.
"I've... I've got a meeting," Allie said. "Some people want to speak with me..."
"Who?" Bullock prodded.
Allie bit her lip, but when Bullock's hands went to the top button of her trousers, she finally said, "Oh, for fuck's sake, Al Swearenegen wants to see me."
Bullock immediately tensed, his jaw clenching as all the warmth he had been emanating only a few seconds before disappeared, replaced with an intense and radiating coldness.
"Swearengen?" Bullock said, as he pulled away from Allie, his jaw clenched.
"Goddamn it," Allie sighed. "You are such a fuckin' cocktease, sometimes, Seth."
"You aren't going," Bullock said as he pointed a finger at Allie.
"Jesus Christ," Allie said. "That's not you're fuckin' call to make, Seth."
"I forbid it," he said emphatically.
"Forbid it all your fuckin' want. It's not going to keep me from going to see what the fuck he wants."
"No," Bullock repeated.
Allie sighed, "See, I knew you'd get this way if I told you anything."
Bullock moved back to the counter and grabbed his hat. Allie followed him, limping as she struggled to catch up.
"Now where the fuck do you think you're going?" she said.
"To the Gem," Bullock said as he adjusted his hat on his head. "Sol!" Bullock called out. "Come down here for a minute."
"I'll be goddamned if you're going there in my stead, Seth," Allie said.
He pointed as her, "This isn't just about you, Allie. Swearengen and I had words earlier. It's time I set things straight with him."
"For fuck's sake," Allie said.
At that point, Sol came down the stairs and looked from Bullock to Allie. "Seth?"
"Stay here. Watch her," he said, turning around to leave.
Allie immediately ran forward, despite the pain to her ankle. She forcefully grabbed Bullock by the arm. "You're in-fuckin'-sane if you think you're going there instead of me, Seth."
Bullock stopped and looked over his shoulder at Allie. "Allie, best drop my arm before I do something we both regret."
"Don't threaten me, Seth," Allie said. "This is none of your goddamn business, and it's time you kept your fat fuckin' nose out of things that don't concern you."
"Are you going to let go of my arm or not?" Bullock asked.
"Not," Allie said.
Nodding once, Bullock swiftly turned around and grabbed for Allie. He tried to put her over his shoulder, but Allie threw her weight forward and kicked at the same time with her good foot so that she fell loose from his grip. Bullock groaned, the air knocked out of him as the pair tumbled to the floor. Allie, who had landed on her bottom, was the first to recover. She scrambled to her feet and ran for the counter. Grabbing the pistol, Allie suddenly cocked it and turned to Bullock.
Seth looked at her wide-eyed from the ground as he struggled for breath. Sol watched in surprise as Allie pointed the gun at Bullock.
Breathing heavily, Allie nodded at Seth as she said, "I told you, Seth... the next time I pointed my gun at you that I wouldn't be holstering it without having fired it."
"You're going to shoot me now?" Bullock asked incredulously.
"Only if you don't stop acting like a fuckin' cock rooster at a pissing contest," Allie said.
"Allie," Sol said. "Put the gun down."
"Sol, this has nothing to do with you, so mind your own fuckin' business," Allie yelled.
Seth sat for a moment, catching his breath before he said, "You're only going to get one shot, Allie, so you better make it a good one."
"Don't make me do this, Seth, not over Al fuckin' Swearengen," Allie said.
Bullock frowned for a second before he made his move. Lunging forward, he went to tackle Allie's legs at the same minute Sol charged her from behind. Allie, Seth, and Sol went down in a tackle of limbs, Bullock being knocked forward from Sol's unexpected collision into Allie' form. He was thrown backwards and landed against the far wall with a sickening thud as a single gunshot pierced the air, and the pistol clattered to the ground in the melee.
Allie felt as if she couldn't breathe for a moment before the world stopped spinning, and she knew that her lungs were working once more. Pushing herself up, pain registered in her bad knee and ankle before she could focus enough to look around. Bullock lay knocked out cold on the opposite side of the room. Allie looked over and saw Sol starting to get up. The pistol lay in a far corner.
"Fuck!" Allie yelled when she saw that Seth had been knocked unconscious. She then stood on unsure feet and spun to face Sol. Pointing her finger at him, Allie cried, "What the fuck did you have to go and do that for, Sol?"
"You were going to shoot him for Christ's sakes, Allie!"
"I was not!" Allie said as she shook her head. "It wouldn't have gone that far if you had minded you're own fuckin' business. Now, look…." she said as she limped over to Seth's inert form, "He's out fuckin' cold."
Leaning down, Allie it was then that Allie noticed the flood of crimson blood which was staining Seth's shirt."
"Oh, fuck, Sol," Allie said, falling to her knees.
"What? What is it?" Sol asked coming to kneel next to her.
Allie looked wide-eyed at him as she said quickly, "Run for Doc Cochrane. I think I've fuckin' killed him."
It was in a discrete a manner as possible that Sol exited the back of the hardware store and ran for Doc Cochrane. Allie immediately pulled off Seth's jacket and opened his shirt. The blood poured from his right shoulder. Working to hold pressure on the wound, Allie shook her head as she cursed every epithet she could think of to keep her mind from the fear which threatened to overwhelm me."
"If you fuckin' die on me now, Seth Bullock, I'm gonna fuckin' kill you myself," Allie said through clenched teeth.
Shortly thereafter, Cochrane entered the store with Sol. He didn't ask for explanations as Allie merely pointed at the bullet wound.
After a cursory examination. Cochrane said, "It's just a flesh wound. Nothing serious."
"And his head?"
"He's fine," Cochrane said. "Just knocked unconscious. Soon as I finish tending him, some smelling salts should jolt him awake."
"He's okay?" Allie asked.
Cochrane sighed. "I've seen him in a worse state, if that's what your asking."
"He's going to live?"
"He'll live," Cochrane responded in exasperation.
"Good," Allie said.
"I need you to help me set him out straight, Sol," Cochrane said.
"Wait a minute," Allie said. Moving deftly around the pair, Allie reached down and unclasped Bullock's gun belt.
Cochrane looked in askance at her, but said nothing.
Turning to Sol as she clasped the belt around her own waist, Allie bent down and retrieved Bullock's hat and put it on."
"You take of his, Sol. I'll be back directly," Allie said with just a tinge of nervousness in her voice.
Fighting the pain of her throbbing foot, Allie then exited the hardware store before a shocked Sol Star could respond.
Swearengen watched Allie emerge from the hardware store from out his window. He watched with interest as she headed into the Gem.
"'Bout fuckin' time," he muttered. He frowned in disgust. "Sheriff's whore… in the sheriff's clothes… what the fuck is this camp coming to?" Swearengen said with a sigh.
As soon as Allie entered the Gem, she immediately saw Dan Dority. Stopping at the bar, she said, "I believe I'm expected."
Dority threw down the rag he was using to dry a shot glass. Moving out from behind the bar, he gestured a hand up the stairs. "Right this fuckin' way."
When Allie entered Swearengen's office, she immediately was on the defensive. Thus, it was with some trepidation that she nodded when she saw him rise from behind the desk.
"Miss Mitchell, I presume."
Allie did her best to look Swearengen straight in the eyes without breaking contact as she nodded. "Mr. Swearengen."
"I've been keen on this meeting for some time," Swearengen said as he took a bottle of whiskey from his desk draw and poured two shots into glasses on the desk. "It's not every fuckin' day that a woman such as yourself comes to Deadwood… and is neither wife… nor whore for hire."
"I'm flattered," Allie said as she quickly picked up the shot glass, saluted Swearengen, and downed it in one gulp. The whiskey burned her throat, and Allie had to use every bit of willpower to keep from coughing. Placing the glass firmly back on the desk, Allie looked up to see Swearengen watching her with interest. "So you mind cuttin' to the chase, and tell me why I'm fuckin' here?"
Swearengen looked at her with a raised eyebrow before downing his shot and nodding. "All right."
Setting the shot glass down, Swearengen said, "It's like this. I hear from certain mutual associates of ours that due to recent difficulties in San Francisco, Wu had had to rely on a new courier service for dope. Now, normally none of this shit would bother me in the slightest so long as I keep getting my dope from Wu on a timely basis."
"And then you show up in town. You make the initial delivery just fine, and, although Wu and I are both surprised that the cocksucker that has been sent by our mutual associates in San Franciso is actually a cocksucker with a snatch, it don't make us mind much since you did your job," Swearegen said.
"And?" Allie said again.
Taking a breath, he continued, "And then I hear through the fuckin' grapevine that you have the added curious talent of being able to 'perturb' Sheriff Bullock."
"Bullock? What the fuck he have to do with anything?" Allie said a bit defensively.
"He has a lot to do with my fuckin' business as it concerns certain annexation issues as related to governmental official fuckin' doings in Yankton," Swearengen said. "And, he was doing a fine fuckin' job as far as my interests were concerned until word comes to camp a couple months back that, despite the fact you had left camp a week before, that the dirt worshippin' heathen Sioux attacked you on the trail. And, as much as a shame that no one should fall victim to such soulless cocksuckers, we then have the issue of Bullock's change in behavior. The good sheriff stops doing what he was supposed to be fuckin' doing as sheriff to take care of you."
"I was unfuckin'conscious at the time," Allie said. "If you had issues with Bullock about the choices he made during my fuckin' recuperation, I suggest you take it up with him."
Swearengen raised his hand up in protest, "Oh, don't get me wrong. The recuperation isn't the part I have the fuckin' problem with... It's the part after Doc Cochrane let's it be known in camp that you're well on the way to recovery, and still staying alone with Bullock at that fine fuckin' place of his on the ridge… that's the part I take issue with and the basis of my problem with him… and you."
He paused before he said, "A married man like Bullock, he gives the right kind of face to our little government here in Deadwood. Shades of fuckin' legitimacy and all that as far as those hoopleheads in Yankton are concerned."
Allie narrowed her eyes as she said, "And?"
"And, that legitimacy is suddenly fuckin' questionable when work that needs to be done by a fuckin' moral and upstanding sheriff isn't getting done," Swearengen said. "It was bad enough when he was fuckin' the widow and everyone knew, but now rumor has it not only have you replaced her, but your snatch seems to be so fuckin' distracting to Bullock, that absolutely none of the fuckin' shit that needs to be done… well, it ain't being done around here, and that is posing an unacceptable danger to my operation that I cannot tolerate."
Allie was silent for a moment. "As to the issue of our former mutual associates in San Francisco, Wu has sense been notified that I have resigned my employment with them. A replacement has since taken up those particular duties on behalf of our former mutual associates in San Francisco, so if you and Wu aren't getting your dope, that is none of my affair."
"Did I say that me not gettin' my fuckin' dope was the problem? Swearengen asked.
"Then why the fuck am I here? My personal business is my personal business," Allie said lowering her glance.
Standing, Swearengen nodded and said, "Come out on the balcony with me for a moment."
Allie looked at him wearily but followed.
When they were at the railing, Swearengen pointed at the street. "See that? Law and order are running smoothly because for once Bullock was out doing his fuckin' job today. That is good for my business. But, tomorrow, if Bullock is too busy fuckin' you to do his goddamn job, that is bad for my business. And, as I've said, I can't fuckin' have that." He paused, before he said, "Now, I'm takin' the matter up with you because I'd hope you'd be fuckin' reasonable about the matter once I had brought it to your attention."
"Like I said," Allie growled. "My personal business is my own personal fuckin' business and nobody else's."
"And that's your final fucking word on the matter?" Swearengen asked.
Allie nodded. "Yeah, that's my final fuckin' word."
Swearengen frowned. "I'm sorry to hear that."
He then turned quickly and yanked Allie backward only to throw her forward almost immediately. Allie knew she was going over the railing before she fell. Realizing there was nothing to be done to stop her fall, Allie did the only thing she could - she grabbed at Swearengen, who was somewhat taken aback in surprise at her boldness, and took him with her over the edge.
The two immediately landed in the mud. Swearengen was on his feet first and delivered a quick kick to Allie's side. She moaned, as Swearengen reached back and punched her once in the face.
"Dumb cunt," he snarled.
"Swearengen!" A voice yelled to Al. Looking up, mud and a small trickle of blood covering his face, Swearengen responded. "That don't have nothing to do with you, Bullock. Stay the fuck out of it."
Bullock made his way to wear Allie lay crumpled on the ground. Although one shoulder was swathed in bandages causing one arm to hang limply at his side, most of the bandages were covered by his buttoned jacket which was only slightly discolored with blood. Bullock radiated anger as he looked for Swearengen to Allie. Leaning down, he never broke his gaze at Swearengen as he reached down to Allie and felt for a pulse. She whimpered in response.
."You putrid cocksucker," Bullock said as he stood. "I told you to be where I could find you."
"And so I am," Swearengen said.
"You get over here and account for your insult," Bullock spat.
"All in due fucking course, but tell me one thing first, Bullock, as I stand here fucking humbled. I wonder if in all the time you've been playing fuckin' doctor with this cunt, you at her ear – among other points of entry – instead of doing your civic duty, have you even paid attention to one fuckin' aspect of doing your job and realized what the fuck is going on in camp?" Swearengen asked.
"What?" Bullock asked. "My civic duty?"
"Yeah," Swearengen said. "Your civic fuckin' duty. It's time for you to do the goddamn job that that tin on your chest represents so as to stop your fucking shirking. Yankton's making it's move!"
"Meaning what? 'Yankton's making it's move?'" Bullock asked in confusion. "And without more fuckin' insults this time."
"Meaning we're getting ass-fucked. Carved into counties, but not one fucking commissioner coming from the hills," Swearengen said.
"How do you have this information?"
"From the governor himself in a pricey little personal note. They want to make us a trough for Yankton's snouts. And them hoopleheads out there, they need buttressing against going over to those cocksuckers," Swearengen said. "Now, I can handle my areas, but there's dimensions and fucking angles I'm not expert at. You would be if you'd sheathe your prick long enough-"
Seth reddened at Swearengen's last comment. "Shut up."
"-and resume being the upright pain in the balls that graced us all last summer-" Swearengen continued.
"Shut up, you son of a bitch," Seth growled.
"Jesus Christ, Bullock!" Swearengen laughed. " The world abounds in cunt of every kind, including hers." Swearengen said with a nod to Allie's inert firm.
Bullock stared at Swearengen for a moment before he removed his badge. Tossing it on the ground, he looked at Swearengen with rage shining in his eyes.
Swearengen sighed. "Of course, if it would steer you from something stupid…I, uh, could always profess another position."
"Will I find you've got a knife?" Bullock asked.
Swearengen shook his head. "I won't need no fucking knife."
Bullock was the first to charge. As the fighting ensued, Sol Star rushed forward and pulled Allie out of the way. She yelped in pain, but Sol disregarded her discomfort as he pulled her towards the store. He then left her propped up against the same spot where Bullock had earlier fallen against.
Allie was dimly aware of the sounds of Swearengen and Bullock fighting. An eternity seemed to pass before she was are that Doc Cochrane was in front of her once more.
"I am seeing entirely too much of you," he said. "Can you stand?"
"I think so," Allie whispered. "Best get you out of here and to my office before Al comes looking for you. I'll help you as I can, but I can't carry you."
"I think an exit out the back would be the best course of action," Cochrane said. Allie nodded. "On the count of three?"
Allie nodded again.
As they exited the hardware store, Allie could have sworn she heard Al Swearengen's voice carry on the wind.
"Welcome to fucking Deadwood! It can be combative..."
By the time Allie was sitting up in Cochrane's office, she was well enough to hold a cold compress to her cheek where Swearengen had belted her.
Looking up at the sound of the door opening, Allie breathed a sigh of relief as she saw Cochrane enter and quickly close behind him.
Coming to look at her, he gently pushed away the cold compress and grimaced as he saw the discoloration of the bruise on her face. "For such a short amount of time, Swearengen sure did kick the shit out of you."
Allie sighed. "Well, it's not like my little bout with Seth and Sol beforehand helped much."
Cochrane nodded. "You keep this lifestyle up, you're going to have to keep me on personal retainer."
"You're ankle has gone and fractured again. I'm going to have to re-splint it and reapply the plaster cast," Cochrane said as he looked at her over his glasses.
Allie nodded and was about to speak before she immediately went rigid. A hand went to her mouth before she turned and began to suddenly vomit in the bowl which was to her side. Cochrane looked at her with a curious glance.
"The dizziness making you nauseous again?"
Allie shook her head slowly. "I'm not dizzy."
"How many times have you thrown up?" Cochrane said, coming to stand before her.
Allie shrugged. "Since I been here or since I woke up?"
"You been nauseous since you woke up?" Cochrane asked.
Allie frowned. "Yeah, a bit."
"How long this been going on?"
Allie sighed as she tried to recollect. "Oh, I don't know. Two or three weeks, intermittently."
"But you haven't been dizzy?" Cochrane asked.
Allie shook her head. "No, why?"
"You finish taking those herbs I left for you a few weeks ago?"
Comprehension seemed to dawn as Allie shook her head slowly.
"And have you had your courses since you've been recovering?" Cochrane asked slowly.
Allie shook her head again.
Cochrane sighed. "Aside from the nausea, you been tired? Often fatigued as like, no matter how much you sleep?"
"Yeah, a bit," Allie said.
Cochrane frowned. "You need to lie down. I need to take a look at you."
Allie complied, handing him the bowl. Shortly thereafter, Allie stood up on one leg as she finished dressing. Cochrane looked at her as he said simply, "It is as we thought."
"Fuck," Allie breathed. "You sure?"
"Can't be positive, but if I were betting, I'd say late November or early December," Cochrane told her.
"Either way," he said, "the on thing I can say with certainty is that you're most definitively with child."
Seth Bullock looked at where Trixie was tending to Sol Star. Cochrane had just left. Seth wanted to ask Sol a million questions about where his gun was, and more importantly about Allie, but instead looked at the woman to his left and forced a smile.
"I'll make arrangements for you at Smith's Boarding House, Martha. I think that's where you and William will be most comfortable until your house is built," Seth said.
Martha Bullock looked in askance as she inquired, "But, I thought you had almost completed it's construction?"
"There were... complications which resulted in inexplicable delays regarding its building," Seth said, his brow furrowed as he fought for words.
"I see," Martha said. "Then, by all means, we shall abide by whatever accommodations you arrange for us."
Bullock nodded. "I'll see to it if you'll follow me."
Alma Garrettt had watched the whole exchange between Allie Mitchell, Al Swearengen, and Seth Bullock from her window. She had also seen Doc Cochrane sneak Allie off in the direction of his office. When she discerned that Bullock's wife and stepson had arrived on the latest stagecoach, she quickly dressed and exited her hotel room.
Waiting for Bullock to emerge from Smith's Boarding House, she signaled to him. Hailing him with a kind smile, it was only when they were close enough so that only one could hear the other, she whispered, "I believe the lady of whom you seek is currently being treated by Doctor Cochrane at his office."
Bullock's eyes widened in gratitude. He clasped her hand once and said, "Thank you."
Quickly taking his leave of her, Seth disappeared in the direction of Cochrane's office.
A short time later, Bullock found himself knocking on the door of Doc Cochrane's office. When the doctor opened it and saw that it was Bullock, he slowly stepped aside to reveal Allie's bruised form staring back at the door. Without a word, Bullock quickly moved forward. Cochrane unobtrusively walked out the door and shut it behind him, catching the faintest glimpse of Seth pulling Allie into his waiting arms as he did so.