A Long time ago there were two men who in other another man's eyes didn't have much just a bindle each and a few cans of beans, but they had more than you or I could imagine. They had a dream to follow and each other. Who were these men you ask? Well I shall tell you of George Milton and Lennie Small.
They came at the crack of dawn two of them walking side by side and straight up to the boss's bunk room. One small and lean, the other as tall as a house who walked with a slowness to him like he was alive but not awake. I leant over to Slim who was standing in the door way and said "Hey take a look at this" gesturing from the doorway chuckling at the way they walked, as if they owned the world.
George would later tell me that the Boss had accused him taking Lennie's money when he would not let him speak for fear that Lennie's slowness would jeopardise their chance of getting the job in the end he just said to the Boss the Lennie was his brother and that he had been kicked in the head as a toddler. I'd never seen such workers before one a scrawny man the this great hulking mass but boy did we have trouble keeping up with these two when hauling grain and sacks, who would have thought such a mixed matched pair could work better than a team that has been working together for their whole life but that's life for you I guess.
It was that night in the bunk house when Carlson came in complaining that my old dog stank and was no use to any of us at all. I believe his exact words were "This old dog stinks and does nothing to earn his keep and it can't work what's the use of keeping him." The others agreed and suggested he be shot, I stated that he'd been with me sin e he was a pup and that I was awful fond of him but they still kept at me until I had to agree with them so off goes Carlson to get his Lugger pistol and takes my old dog outside and shoots him. Like I said he'd been with me since he was a pup and I couldn't bring myself to do it. That's why I let Carlson do it
A few days later I walked in to the bunk house to see George and Lennie discussing what they were going to do when they got their money from the boss I couldn't help but over hear what they were talking about and said to George "Now where is you going to going to get a little patch of heaven like now aye?"
George looked up balefully sneered at me saying "What are you eavesdropping for swamper?" I looked up and said I was nought listening and that I was sitting minding my own business and that if he did not want other people to hear then don't talk so loud, Lennie then piped up and said that he was going to look after the rabbits and looked pointedly at George and said "Tell 'im George, tell 'im" and so George looked at Lennie and sighed and looked away when he turned back he had this gleam to his eye and started to speak in a distant voice his eyes dancing with emotion. "Guys like us the work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don't belong no place. They come to a ranch an' work up a stake, and then they got inta town an' blow their stake first thing you know they're poundin' their tail on some other ranch. They ain't got nothing to look ahead to." "Tha's it George, tha's it now tell 'im how it is wi' us" interjected Lennie "We're not like other blokes Lennie and I, we're different." George continued as if Lennie had never interrupted him. "Why? Cause we've got each other. Wi' us I ain't like this, cause we got somebody tha' gives a damn 'bout us. If them other guys gets in jail they can rot for all anybody gives a damn." "Why" Lennie broke in yet again, "Cause I looks after you an' you looks after me, tha's why." "Go on now George" Lennie excitedly exclaimed. "OK so someday we're gonna get a little stake together an' get a little bit o' land, couple o' acres is all we're gonna need with a paddock an' a pig pen and a little house with a pot belie stove to set round in Winter. An orchard round the back with 'cots an' berries, and all kind of fruits and nuts." "Wha' 'bout them rabbits George, you ain't forgetting them are ye'." Lennie yet again interrupted. George looked up and sighed saying "No Lennie I ain't forgot them rabbits." He then looked back down to me and continued "We'd have a hutch of rabbit an' Lennie here would feed 'em ever' day with Alfalfa from the paddock. We could have a goat or a cow and milk it ever' day." Finished George. "We'd live of the fatta the land" said Lennie in awe.
This got me thinking a bit and I said to George "How much for a little place like this?" George said he knew of one for $600 and that he might be able to swing the lady for $450. I then said to George that if they let me although I might not be much good with one hand tha' I could help wi' the hoeing in the garden and the cooking if they'd let me and I had $350 saved up and I had $50 coming at the end of the month. With that it was agreed we'd get the little place and fix it up an' "Live of the fatta the land" as Lennie put it.
A bit after this Curley the Boss's son came making a fuss and started to have a go at Lennie and belt him in the face. Lennie stood there dumfounded and shying away from him until George said "Give it to 'im Lennie." At this Lennie raised a great paw like hand and curled it round Curley's and crushed it. It took three or four of us men to get him to let go. After that Slim knelt down glaring at Curley say that he was to say that he got his hand caught in a machine for them to take him to the doctor.
This is when tragedy struck it was after we had been talking to Crooks the nigger stable hand and everyone was out playing horse shoes and Lennie had snuck into the barn to see his puppy and had killed it. George reckons he was petting it to hard and killed it. Things from here get a bit sketchy we know that Curley's wife comes into the barn and starts talking to Lennie and that he said he wanted nothing to do with her but she persisted. We then think that the foolish girl said for him to stroke her hair or her dress. Crooks was sitting in his room reading at the time at the back of the stable said he heard a noise but it only sounded like us yelling and cheering cause someone had scored big and thought nothing more of it an went back to reading. But of course it was only when I went into the barn looking for Lennie and discovered Curley's wife lying there, it was like she was sleeping I looked down at here and said that she should not be sleeping in the barn. When she did not stir I bent down to wake her and to tell her to go to her house or go and sit with Curley, but upon touching her I found her body was as stiff as a board. She was dead. I ran out and got George and bought him back to show him what I thought had been the result of Lennie's brute strength.
It turns out that I was right for lying not to far was the dead pup and Lennie's hat. Slim came up and looked from me to George to Curley's wife on the ground dead. George began to speak "Ok so you guys give me five minutes to get out of here otherwise Curley is going to think I was in on this, and then I will come in acting like I know nothing about this ok."
At this stage both slim and I looked at each other and nodded. Then we set our plan to action, Slim and I hurrying over to Curley and George walking up like he did not know what was going on. We silently led Curley to the barn and showed him the body of his young wife who was lying dead o the floor. "It was Lennie I know it was HE is the only one who has the strength to snap a girl's neck." Bellowed Curley glaring balefully at George "I'll have 'im lynched I swear to it." "Anyone who has got a gun go get it we are going to find him and then I am going to shoot him dead."
Everyone who owned a gun raced out the door and on to the horses that were saddled in the yard were off, all except George, Slim and I.
We heard a gunshot in the distance and raced towards the place we heard it. What we found was not a pretty sight at all. There was Curley standing there with a shotgun bragging about how he'd shot Lennie straight in the stomach and killed him and the others crowded round him. Then there was George, he had a pistol that had been cast off the one side lying next to him and he was sitting staring at the place where Lennie was laying face down in the dirt next to the river.
Slim and I looked at each other and put two and two together. It was not Curley who'd shot Lennie. It was George who'd pulled the trigger and killed Lennie
George later told us of how he'd snuck off with a pistol he had somehow got a hold of and found Lennie and shot him in the head. He later would tell me that Lennie had begged him to tell him "The Story" and that it was then that he did it, then that he shot his best friend and brother in the head and killed him.
This was the last we ever saw of George. He packed up his and Lennie's bindle and walked out the front gate never to be seen again.
I like to think that he got his little place somewhere and is living off "the fatta the land" somewhere. Somehow I don't think so though that was his and Lennie's dream and I don't think that he would have had the heart to go through with it without Lennie by his side.
You see, they were different. You want to know why? Cause they had each other. "I got you to look after me an' you got me to look after you." That was how they put it.
Georgina Kevan 10A
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