Baltimore, Maryland-1853

Jane was not too fond of saloons and this one was no exception. The billiard room was so thick with smoke from cigarettes and cigars that it nearly burned her lungs, and the laughter coming from rowdy gentlemen and pleasurable squeals from loose women were grating on Jane's nerves. There was so many people in the room that Jane was having a hard time finding John "Brown Boots" Harris. She moved from person to person, to table to table, until she found a familiar looking face. The unshaven beard, the wild blonde hair, and the liver-spotted face. She took out the poster that she had been given, and compared the face on it with the man that she was looking at. No doubt now, it was a match.

Pulling the sleeves on her dress down to her shoulders, she walked over to the table where Brown Boots was playing poker with several gentlemen.

"Anyone here named Harris?" Jane asked.

"Who wants to know?" Brown Boots said.

Jane shrugged. "I'm new here, you see, and Charlie tells me that you're a regular and you always like to see the new ones. "

Brown Boots looked Jane over and smiled. "Kind of scrawny, but I guess you'll do."

Brown Boots excused himself and then followed Jane upstairs and to one of the rooms. As he began to undress, so did Jane.

"What's your name?"


"Well Jane, I hope that you don't mind licking."

Jane allowed her dress to fall to the floor. "I don't pay no mind to that."

"Good girl. You know you're a lot prettier than the last one. Hardly had any teeth, and no tits. She was a flat thing, and I never liked flat. I wouldn't have mind all this, if she hadn't been a bad fucker."

Brown Boots sighed and laid back on the bed. "I enjoyed seeing that bullet go between those blue eyes."

Jane feigned shock. "You mean you killed her?"

"Sure did. She won't the only one to. Five other whores have been buried at the back of this place. I don't like to kill women folk, but if they disappoint old Brown Boots, well I don't have a choice then. Men are a whole lot easier to kill, they don't usually scream. When I robbed a bank in Missouri, I shot this lady and she screamed so loud that I wasn't able to strangle her instead."

"It sounds like you've done a lot of killing."

"Oh darlin', it's what I do. I know it's probably not smart to talk to you about this, but if the noose ain't around my neck by now, then I don't think it'll ever be."

Jane turned to Brown Boots and smiled. "You sound like a very smart man."

"What I am is horny. Now come over here and let me get a better look at you."

Jane walked over to Brown Boots and he laid back on the bed. She placed her leg on the bed and slowly began to pull up her skirt.

"I'm sure many people are wanting your head, mister."

Brown Boots shrugged. "I've got a bounty. About 13,000 dollars. Bunch of bullshit if you ask me, I'm worth a lot more."

"You know, I'd have to disagree."

Jane pulled her skirt up to her thigh, revealing her pistol and its holster. Before Brown Boots could even react, she whipped out her weapon and shot him in the forehead.

"13,000 is far too much for you, bastard."

Putting her gun back, Jane redressed herself and then wrapped Brown Boots body up in a blanket. After searching the room, she found ink, a quill, and a scrap of paper. Sitting on the bed, she wrote out her brief message.

Found Brown Boots. Will arrive in Georgia with corpse in three days. Though bounty is thirteen thousand, I wish to only have half.

-J. Hartman