To: Thaddeus Jones
Belle Station, Texas
Had to stay extra night in Pine Sands due to storm.
Will arrive tomorrow.
Stay out of trouble.
'Stay out of trouble...' Kid Curry snorted and gave a nod to the telegrapher. "Thanks." He then headed out towards the main street running through Belle Station. He had arrived just that morning after finishing a job for Big Mac McCreedy. The job had been simple and had only required one of them, so he and Heyes had split up. Hannibal Heyes had ended up finding an equally easy job in Pine Sands, New Mexico.
'He just better not tell me he didn't get paid again when he shows up tomorrow,' Kid thought to himself. He stood on the boardwalk in front of the telegraph office taking in the town. Main street consisted of a dress shop,general mercantile, bank, restaurant, saloon, and hotel on the corner. To Curry's left, at the end of the town, sat the livery stable and sheriff's office. Having checked the local law enforcement once again upon his earlier arrival, Kid felt pretty confident they didn't need worry about being recognized. He found his eyes wandering back to the restaurant straight across from him. It was evening, and had been a while since he had last eaten. So, he decided to have some dinner. Besides, the sky was beginning to darken with cloud cover. 'Probably part of the storm that held up Heyes,' Kid thought.
He crossed the street and sauntered into the restaurant. A couple of old-timers sipping coffee were the only patrons at the moment which suited Curry just fine. 'The less contact with people, the less chance someone might know me.' He situated himself at a corner table, facing the door as usual. A waitress came over to him just as he was laying his hat down and trying to smooth down some unruly curls of hair.
"Why hello there!" the waitress said pleasantly. "Haven't seen you before. New in town?"
"Uh, yeah. Just got in this morning," Kid answered looking up at her.
"Well, you've just walked into the best restaurant this side of the Rio Grande!" the waitress proudly announced. "So, what can I get you sweetie?"
"Whatcha got?" Kid asked with a smile. Belle Station was starting to look pretty good judging by the auburn-haired beauty taking his order.
"Well, today we got beef stew or chicken," Ms. Waitress said with a smile of her own. "By the way, the name is Bethany, Mr...?"
"Jones. Thaddeus Jones. And well Bethany, I think I'll have me some chicken."
"Be just a few minutes," Bethany said as she turned toward the kitchen.
'Now Kid, don't get no ideas. You'll be leaving day after tomorrow.' Curry could just hear Heyes' voice in his head. 'Yeah, I know Heyes, stay out of trouble...'
He was still in the midst of his mental argument when a hot plate of chicken and potatoes was plopped down in front of him.
"Enjoy Mr. Jones," Bethany smiled as she sashayed away.
Kid eagerly tore into the chicken. 'Don't worry Heyes. She's probably not interested anyway.'
After his dinner was devoured, he stopped by the saloon just long enough for a couple of drinks, then decided to retire to his hotel room for the night. The job, then the early morning ride into town had left him exhausted. All he wanted to do now was relax.
Kid entered the hotel's lobby, asked Davy, the clerk behind the desk, if he had any messages, and headed up the staircase to his room. When he reached the top of the stairs, something creaked. Looking down, he realized one of the floorboards was loose and coming up on on end. 'They ought to fix that', Curry thought in passing. He continued on to his room for some much needed relaxation.
Hannibal Heyes had also settled down into his own hotel room in Pine Sands, New Mexico. He had recently acquired, (legally of course), a book by Jules Verne and was looking forward to reading it. 'We finally got a little money, we're in an area where virtually nobody knows us, maybe we can get a little rest and relaxation when I meet up with Kid tomorrow,' Heyes thought as he got comfortable in his bed. "Its about time," he said aloud for no other reason than to break the monotonous silence. Settled in for the night, he opened his new Verne book, excited to to lose himself in stories of shipwrecks, cannibals, and treachery.
'Why can't I SLEEP?' Kid Curry turned restlessly on his bed. Normally, Heyes was the one who had trouble sleeping. Kid couldn't figure out what had brought on the sudden bout of insomnia. Having resigned himself to the fact he wasn't about to get to sleep anytime soon, he decided to get dressed and head back to the saloon for a nightcap.
The hotel's hallway was dimly lit as Kid opened his door. He walked quietly out of his room and down the hall so as not to disturb anyone that may not have had his problem getting to dreamland. He had just reached the top of the stairs when his boot connected with the loose end of the floorboard. He tried desperately to stop the inevitable fall, but failed miserably. Kid went tumbling down the staircase startling Davy the desk clerk his light nap.
"What the...?" Davy yelped as he saw the blond ex-outlaw come to rest at the bottom of the stairs. "Oh my gosh! Mister! Mister, you okay?" He ran over to Kid only to find him unconscious. The commotion had aroused the hotel's only other occupant at the moment.
"What's all this ruckus about?" came a voice from the second floor.
"He just fell down the stairs," Davy called up. "He's knocked himself out. Would you mind to come sit with him whilst I go and fetch Doc Lewis?"
"Sure, guess I could," the middle-aged cowboy said descending the stairs. "Go on and fetch the doc. I'll keep an eye on him."
"Thanks mister," Davy replied as he ran out the door and down the street.
A couple minutes later, Davy was banging on the front door of Belle Station's doctor. "Doc! Hey doc! Wake up!"
Not a few seconds later, the front door opened. "Davy! What are you doing out here yelling like a lunatic?" Bethany asked from the doorway.
"Beth! Where's your pa? There's a fella just fell down the stairs over to the hotel!" Davy breathlessly told her. "He knocked himself plumb out!"
"Oh my! Hold on. I'll go get him." Bethany disappeared back into the house only to emerge a few minutes later with her pa, the doctor. "Alright, let's go."
The trio returned to the hotel to find the cowboy still sitting on the bottom stair watching Kid. He stood when they entered. "He ain't moved at all," he informed them.
"Thanks for watching him mister," Davy said.
"No problem," the cowboy replied as he returned to his room.
"Let's have a look here," Doc Lewis said bending down to examine Kid. He quickly checked him for signs of broken bones. Then, when he was satisfied it would be safe to move him, got Davy and Beth to help carry Curry to the doc's office a couple doors down from the hotel.
"Lay him down gently," Doc Lewis grunted from exertion.
"Hey, I saw this fella earlier today in the restaurant," Beth said as they laid him down and removed his jacket. "I believe he said his name was Jones."
Doc Lewis examined Kid more closely looking for any injuries. Luckily, Curry didn't have anything broken. The only visible injuries were a few scratches and bruises, the most prominent being on the side of his forehead, disappearing into his hairline. "Beth, go get me the smelling salt out of the drawer," the doc instructed.
"Here you go," Bethany said a moment later.
Doc Lewis placed the vile of smelling salt under Kid's nose. "Mr. Jones? Wake up Mr. Jones."
After a few moments of administering the salts, Kid started to stir. He brought a hand up to his head and slowly opened his eyes. "Welcome back Mr. Jones," the doc said removing the vile.
"Huh? What?" Kid blinked his eyes trying to focus on the three, or was it six, people looking down at him. "Whoa, that must've been one heck of a shot of whiskey," he said quietly rubbing his eyes.
"It wasn't whiskey Mr. Jones. Seems you took a nasty spill down the hotel staircase," Doc Lewis informed him. "I don't see any serious injuries, but you probably have a concussion judging by that bruise on your head. I hope you didn't have any important business out of town because you need to rest at least a day or two before too much activity."
"Uh, no, I don't think I did. I believe I was waiting for something,...or someone...," Curry slurred.
"What do you mean you 'think'? Don't you remember?" the doc asked.
"Well,...no, not really," Kid said momentarily closing his eyes. "Gees, my head hurts."
"That's to be expected." Doc Lewis looked at him worriedly. "Mr. Jones, exactly what can you remember?"
"Well, let's see. I know my last name must be Jones 'cause that's what you keep calling me. Don't rightly remember my first name. Uh,...lemme think... Well, I just came back from visiting my uncle. Seems like his name is Mac...McCreedy. Then I came here to...wait for...someone to show up." Kid was definitely having a difficult time. "But why would I be sitting around waiting for somebody?"
"Perhaps it was job related Mr. Jones," Beth interjected trying to be helpful. "What line of work are you in?"
Kid stared off into space, trying to piece together the fragmented thoughts drifting through his mind. "Uncle Mac,...waiting... I got a telegraph earlier,...or did I? If I did, who was it from and where is it? Who do I know that would send me a telegraph? Hmm,...Wyoming,...a sheriff there. I know a sheriff, in Wyoming. What's his name? Don,...John,...DANG IT! What's his name?... Dom,...Lom,...Lom,...hmm... Lom! Yes Lom! But what's his last name? Heck, I don't know. And who on earth am I wanting to show up here?"
The others gave Curry time to think a little, listening to his mumbling. Not understanding much of anything he said, they decided to prod for more information. "Mr. Jones, is anything coming to you?" Doc asked.
"A few things. I remembered I know a sheriff Lom something in Wyoming. That's about it, other than waiting."
"Well, if you know a sheriff, maybe you're in law enforcement," Beth offered.
"Law enforcement...," Kid returned to his thoughts. 'The law,...sheriff Lom,... Seems like I have dealt with the law alot...the law,...in-laws,...outlaws,...outlaw...that's it!'
Then Curry spoke. "Little lady, I believe you might be right. I think I work for sheriff Lom something of Wyoming. I came down to visit my uncle, then I had to come here for a job. I'm waiting,...
...for an outlaw to show up,...
...so I can arrest him."