So I started a new story...I'll eventually get back to my other ones! I'm sorry for my long absence ;_; between moving and college my life has been CRAZY. Anyway I hope you guys like this. Give it a chance. It's in the 1800s after the Civil War and I'm making some of my own history up along with some accurate stuff (possibly...if I'm not lazy...).


It has been at least a week since we set off for Nevada. I sat beside my father as he drove our carriage further and further west. Sweat dripped down my back as the blistering sun beat down on us in a cloudless sky. The weather out here sure was a lot different than weather back east. How I missed home. I missed the cool and constant breeze coming off the waters which would make the summer sun more forgiving, the green and gentle rolling hills, the spread of wild flowers in a field...now all I see is desert and feel the hot air that makes it hard to breath.

As much as I wanted to blame my father I couldn't. After we lost my mother things haven't really been the same for us. We were all looking for a new beginning. I suppose the offer for free land out west, in promise that my father would join forces with the other settlers and soldiers to fight off the opposing Natives, was just the kind of new start father was looking for. Initially I was excited too, but as our carriage carried us further away from everything I knew I began to have my doubts. We were given five cattle to start off with, father said it was mighty generous and that we could start our own ranch; but already two have died, either from the changing climate or just because they were poor cattle to start off with I don't know. I didn't want to bring up to him that we were gunna have a bunch of inbred cattle at this rate...he had enough to worry about.

I sighed and look back to see Gram sleeping in the shade of the carriage. I worried for Gram too. None of us knew what we were going to face coming out here. I've heard stories though, some positive, but most of them being negative. Like Sue, down at the General Store, told me one story of a Native tribe-I don't remember if it was the Shoshone or Lakota-but one of them ambushed a small settler's ranch and killed the whole family, two daughters, a son, and the mother and father. With a hushed voice I could hear her say she even believe they raped the mother. Of course, this was just Sue talkin' so I don't really know how much of it was true...but it was enough to make me worried. I mean...could people really be that cruel? Then again I guess the Native's aren't called savages for nothing...and we wouldn't come out here to fight them for no reason at all.

"Look like you're doing a lot of thinkin' over there, Sam." My father's voice brought me out of my thoughts.

I turned to him and gave him a reassuring smile. "Just wonderin' what it's gunna be like living out west."

He smiled back. "There's a big ol' house. Bigger than the one we had. We'll build you a barn for horses, cows, and whatever you want. Gram will start her garden again and we'll have the freshest vegetables for a-hundred miles!"

I looked out toward the dry plains. Didn't seem right for growing a garden. A barn sounded nice; but we only had the three cattle left and our two horses which were pulling us now, Strawberry and Sweetheart. I don't like Strawberry much...well I do...she just doesn't like me much and Sweetheart, well Sweetheart sure is getting old. Then again, I hear there's a lot of wild Mustangs out here, maybe...just maybe I can catch one for myself.

"We'll probably be the only people for a-hundred miles," I sounded a little more bitter than I meant to which caused him to shake his head.

"'Course not Sam. Think I could move out here and leave you and your Gram alone for days?" He clucked the horses on and turned back towards me. "Nope. There's a good mess of ranchers starting off where we're going. Even starting a little town with shops and all." He smiled at me but I didn't return it. With a sigh he patted my shoulder and I looked up at his shadowed face. "You'll like it Sam. You and your Gram."

"Promise?"

He nodded. "I promise." We both turned our attention back to the front. Squinting, I could just make something out in the distance. "In a matter of fact, you're about to see just how much." He pointed out to where I was already looking. "Cause we're about to be there."

x-x-x-x-x

We pulled into a small town-so small I wasn't even sure if it could be considered a town-and stopped in front of the Post Office. Father stood and stretched before jumping off of his seat. I was about to follow when he stopped me.

"You wait here, I'll be right back."

With a huff I sat back down and pushed back the hair that had fallen in my face. All this red hair was a curse...and extremely hot. Using my sleeve I wiped away the sweat from my face also, I felt dusty and wished that I could wash it off.

"Where's Wyatt?"

Gram's voice made me jump. I thought she was still sleeping. "He went inside." I wish I could have, I bet it was cool inside the shade. Just then he walked out of the Post Office accompanied by another man who was dressed in a soldier's uniform...even though the war was over.

"Samantha," the man and my father walked up to the carriage by where I was sitting. "This is Mr. Kenworthy, he's been kind enough to offer us a place to stay while we finish building our home."

"I thought you said our house was done?" I had momentarily forgotten what manners I had as I completely ignored my father's introduction.

Father gave me a warning look. "It needs some minor touches. It'll be done within the week."

"It's nice to meet you Samantha," Mr. Kenworthy ignored my rude behavior and shook my hand. I was a little grateful that he diminished the tense atmosphere. "You know I have a daughter about your age. It'll be nice for you to get to know someone your age around here."

This lifted my spirits some. I really didn't expect there the be any form of civilization out here. But now I have the opportunity to meet a girl my age. He was right...it will be nice.

"I'm looking forward to meeting her. Thank you for offering us a place to stay Mr. Kenworthy." I felt like I made a nice recovery from my earlier rude behavior.

"Oh, it's not a problem. I'll lead you out there now. I know you have to be tired."

He was right. I was exhausted and honestly...I was looking forward to getting out of the sun.


PLEASE REVIEW. Also, I realize Sam's look on the Native's and calling them "savages" may seem harsh. But it's in that time period where that's what they believed! She doesn't know better ;P