Welcome to Tuesday Tales! This week we have another excerpt from my 2013 NaNoWriMo novel, Laco Law – The Gnarled Oak. Laco Law is an M/M historical western romance, set in the fictional county of Laco, Texas in 1867.
This week our word prompt is ‘Satin’. In this excerpt Clayton and Zeke have tracked down the Gum Brothers and retribution is at hand.
A note for my readers: This is a gay erotic romance novel, and so the romance that occurs is man on man. If this is not your cup of tea, no one will think less of you if you read no further. Also, this excerpt contains graphic violence as well as explicit language, so the same note applies.
As this is my NaNo work, it is quite rough. I do ask that you overlook any glaring mistakes you may find. Please do check out the other wonderful writers after you`re done reading by clicking on the Tuesday Tales link at the bottom. Thanks for stopping in!
I mentally damned them both to rot in hell. A rogue bullet slammed into the outhouse. Silence descended upon us. A woman cried out inside the home. Then a man let his presence be known.
“You lawmen?” he shouted. The woman`s screams grew louder. I took off my hat to peer around the corner of the outhouse. Two men, both of similar size and build, were sneaking out of the house, each one with a hostage or two. A naked woman who bore the signs of rough handling was being dragged from the porch, smoking revolver barrel to her head. Two children, neither older than six, were hauled out by a man that sucked air in with deathly, wheezing gasps. The second man was in bad shape. He had all he could handle with the duo of shrieking, terrified children.
“That we are. I have been duly authorized by the state of Texas to bring you in dead or alive,” I replied between the children`s screams. “Are you the Gum Brothers?”
“That we are!” the first man mimicked my Cajun accent. That was fine. His days of parroting anyone were drawing to a close, so he might as well enjoy his final moments. “You look familiar. Did I fuck your sister? Or maybe it was your mother, Sheriff?!”
I drew back behind the outhouse to check the Henry and take a moment. The smell of the shitter did nothing to ease my mental state, or lessen the annoyances to my nose or eyes. Flies buzzed slothfully around the vent holes. The wind whipped through the satin bloomers on the line.
“That would have been my sister,” I called out. I drew in a steadying breath, stepped out, fired one single shot, and removed the side of Gum Brother One`s face from his skull. The woman fell out of his grip as he tumbled backwards, her naked breast splattered with brain matter. The second man, Gum Brother Number Two, seemed momentarily stupefied. Perhaps he was. I aimed at his groin. His brother convulsed in front of a passing goat, his brain just now realizing it was exposed to the world.
Gum Brother Number Two took the small boy by the neck. The lad’s feet left the ground. I had no clean shot. My deputy did, though. A bullet tore through Gum Brother Number Two`s rib-cage. The man twisted and contorted then crumpled like a cast aside rag doll. Dog appeared, his coat soaking wet, his fangs bared. He leaped on the man. I ran forward to pull the dog from the outlaw`s throat. The kids and the woman cried and wailed. Dog had ripped an ugly hole in the man`s windpipe. Zeke then limped into sight. The weeping and wailing grew into a crescendo that made man and dog whine in pain.
“He`s with me!” I shouted at the huddled mass of crying bodies in the dusty yard. Zeke said something to Dog. The mutt trotted off proudly, his muzzle coated with blood.
“You`re heading to see your God soon,” Zeke told the man writhing at our feet. “Maybe you should clear your conscious.”
“We fucking . . . hung you,” Gum Two panted. I kicked him as hard as I could in the face then I politely told the woman to take the children inside. She gathered her young to her saggy breasts. They hurried inside. The door closed. Zeke and I crouched down beside Mister Gum. Gum`s pale blue eyes were round as dinner platters. I glanced at my deputy. He was an incredible contradiction. On his chest he wore a symbol of law and order, but in his hand he balanced a knife crafted from stone and bone. I had never seen the knife outwardly carried, so it must be a hidden weapon. Gum Number Two, now he had obviously been witness to such flat knives before, for he began weeping and pleading with my deputy.
Zeke reached for the dying man`s thinning golden hair. Gum screamed for mercy. I looked at my deputy with shock. His mouth was a flat line. I caught the slight twitch lift the livid bruise at the corner of his mouth.
“Mister Gum,” I drawled, leaning back on my calf as Zeke made sounds to show just how impressed he was with the pretty yellow scalp, “Not only did you attack then try to hang my deputy by his neck until he was dead, you have also been accused of numerous crimes ranging from rape to robbery to murder.”
“He wasn`t wearing . . . no star!” he coughed. Blood bubbled from his mouth. Zeke`s grip tightened. The scalping knife, if that`s what it was, came to rest on Gum`s sodden hairline.
“I strongly suspect that would not have mattered,” I said. Zeke`s dark brow crept up minutely at my sardonic tone. “What will matter is how you spend your last few moments here on Earth. Now, you can go out with a clear conscious by telling us who you ride with and work for. Or,” I inclined my head at Zeke. He smiled coldly down at the man as his blade made a fine line of blood appear on Gum`s brow. “I`ll go check on the family that you`ve been terrorizing and let my deputy take his prize. Damned awful way to meet St. Peter, minus your hair and all . . .”
“Double Sun,” Brother Gum coughed violently. I looked at Zeke. The Tonkawa shook his head. The blade bit deeper into Gum`s skull. A brown goat with long ears and a pendulous udder came over to watch the interrogation. Foamy red spittle now dotted Zeke`s shirt. I asked for clarity. Gum Number Two could not give us any as his time upon this plane had just ended. I didn`t bother to close his eyes. The lingering sight of an Indian about to remove his hair from his head was a fitting one for such a man.
I stood up. Zeke did as well. He slipped the blade into the side of his boot then tugged the hem of his pant leg downward to cover his ankle.
“Would you have really scalped him?” I asked, cradling my Henry in the crook of my arm.
“Not with them watching,” he said, his eyes moving to the house. I looked over my shoulder to see three pale faces plastered to the lone pane of glass. I nodded at the group. They faded from view. I turned to face Zeke.
“If they hadn`t been here?”
He met my searching look with a flat one, whistled for his dog, and then walked towards the paddock to reclaim his horse, his guns riding low on his hips.
Copyright 2013 ©by V.L. Locey
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See you next week with more from the old West!