Eva always had an affinity for broken things. Not because she could fix them but because she liked looking at them. She has always found a certain beauty in things that didn't work the way they once did. Maybe it was because she was more than a little broken herself.
She had tried to fix broken things before but quickly realized she had no talent for it. They just ended up in even worse condition and usually lacked the beauty they'd once carried once she was through. But sometimes that urge just came over her.
Eva supposed that was why she spent so much energy on Elam. A man couldn't live most of his life under the law of another man and not be broken. But no matter how hard she tried, Elam refused to be fixed. Eva was pretty sure she had damaged him more with all her talk of being together. That was what she did after all. Take broken things and robbed them of their beauty.
When Eva found The Swede all broken that night after the mob had worked him over she was tempted to just leave him there. The man had never done her any favors and she was tired of always breaking things of their beauty. But then he made that pained whimpering noise and reached a hand to her. Eva just couldn't let him lay in there in the dirt like he was.
So, by summoning strength she didn't even know she had, Eva managed to drag him back to his caboose. She made him comfortable on the couch before grabbing his gun and going to face the crowd that had started to form outside. All it took was a good speech to keep them away. Well, a good speech and a few well-placed shots. Eva was always a good marksman.
The Swede wasn't exactly an ideal patient but the most he did was growl at her when Eva had to put ointment on his burns. He wanted to leave long before Eva thought he was ready. No amount of arguing could convince him that it was stupid to follow Bohannon across the country. This quest for justice would just land him in his grave. Like all men Eva had ever known, The Swede refused to listen to reason. Eva often thought the world might be a lot better if women had more power than men. But her thoughts didn't matter because The Swede was going whether she liked it or not.
He left in the night while she was busy with clients. When Eva went back to the caboose to check on him, the place had been cleaned out. All that was left was a tarnished silver pocket watch and a note. The note thanked her for helping him, told her that he was leaving after Bohannon and to keep the pocket watch as payment for her services. He even signed it with his real name, Thor Gunderson.
Eva held on to the watch. Some part of her hoped he would come back for it. And maybe even for her. There had been something in that beautiful brokenness that made Eva think he liked her in a different way than most men. Almost in the way Elam had liked her. And maybe if he came back it would prove that Eva didn't always take the beauty of broken things.
It was nearly three years before the marshals walked into camp. No one paid them much attention, not even Eva. She had her customers to deal with. She certainly didn't have time to worry about some slicked up gentlemen from the city. At least until they came looking for her. Eva could feel everyone's eyes on her as they made their way to her in the middle of camp. The whole town could see the marshals weren't looking for a whore. They were looking for a woman. Eva still wondered what everyone thought when she had nearly collapsed after being given the news.
The Swede was dead. Cullen Bohannon had cornered him late one night and shot Thor in the back like the coward he was. Eva had never felt such rage at another human being in years. Thor had no family left. Because of the kind treatment she had shown him during his time of need, he named her his next of kin. The marshals gave her the clothes he'd been wearing along with the few personal effects he'd had on him. Eva couldn't keep her feet under her too well as she took the package. The only bright spot she had was when the marshals told her that Bohannon was in a jail cell when they left. He would probably be dead before they got back.
Eva returned to her tent, put the bundle of Thor's things gently on the bed and turned around to throw the pocket watch at the nearest wooden post. Then she curled up on the bed and cried until she fell asleep. When she woke up hours later, her first thought was for the pocket watch. It lay in the dirt no longer ticking, glass shattered into jagged pieces, chain gone and cover dented in several new places. Eva thought it had never looked better.
The madam was kind enough to keep customers away from her while she grieved but Eva still felt suffocated in the camp. She felt eyes following her when she walked outside. Each person wondering why she felt so deeply for a man she barely knew. Lily tried to get her to open up but it was too painful. The well-bred woman couldn't understand the beauty of broken things and how Eva and Thor were really two sides of the same coin. In the end, the two women just stopped talking.
The worst though was when Elam came to her. Eva thought maybe he would understand her pain being broken in much the same way as Thor and Eva. She should have realized his obsessive loyalty to Bohannon would cloud his judgment. Eva wasn't proud of how angry she had gotten at him. Or the things she yelled, like how his friend was probably swaying in the breeze by now. But his words about Thor had hurt too badly for her to be patient with Elam. It was then she decided that she had to leave Hell on Wheels. The town was too much for her and her pained heart. The next time a train came through, Eva was on it, bound for who knows where.
When old ranchers and cowboys were gathered around the fire swapping stories of whores there was always one in particular that was brought up. Many called her the Indian Princess because of the tattoos around her chin. She never spoke unless she absolutely had to but she could still ply her trade as a whore. In the corner of her room sat a bundle of men's clothes as though waiting for someone to retrieve them. Anyone who asked about it was sent from her room and refused business. Around her neck she wore a broken pocket watch that hung like a medallion. Men who bedded her always had to be careful of the jagged glass pieces because she refused to take it off.
Every man who saw her agreed that she that quiet, sad air of a doll that has been patched up too many times to ever truly look right. Still, there was a strange sort of beauty to her when you looked right. If there is ever beauty in broken things that is.