This is part of an ongoing tales I have written. In no way am I professional writer. I just love to write. If you want to read the other parts before this one please click here. Oklahoma Rose
I hope you enjoy reading this as much as I enjoy writing it.
“Why do you look so nervous?” I asked Perry. “You ain’t the one askin’.”
“I’m not nervous. I just feel a little hot in this shirt. Why did you have to dirty up my favorite one?” He whined.
“Really? You ain’t never had a problem with that shirt and it’ll wash.” I couldn’t help myself. First chance I got I had it wadded in my hand, but he saw me coming so I launched it off the porch. Worse than a girl.
I’m not sure what I expected when I went out to the Shotgun Girl ranch but I wasn’t expecting what I got. Kalamity was wearing a dress. I tried to keep my mouth closed but I was truly flabbergasted. Mama K gave me a big ole hug like I was her biggest fan and everyone was polite. I thought we would have a few odd looks for showing up unannounced and maybe witness what this crazy bunch did when noone was looking but this wasn’t what I pictured.
“Come on in.” Mama K welcomed me in. “Sit and stay for a spell. Would you like some beans and cornbread?”
I noticed that the table was set with 5 bowls and some silverware. It looked like some of them were getting ready to eat. Flowers were in a vase. Flowers? I wonder where those came from.
“I don’t want to intrude on dinner.” Looking from my Brother to Mama K and landing my eyes on Kalamity with raised eye brows.
“It’s no intrusion at all.” Kalamity said softly. “Let me go get Pops.”
She hustled past Perry and I out the door. She smelled divine. It wasn’t like the imported stuff them girls in town wore. Earthy and a touch of something wild like honeysuckle.
“Go ahead and sit. Are you hungry?” Mama K asked.
“Well sure. We’ve only ate some hardtack and jerky today so I’m not about to refuse one of my favorites.” I smiled.
“Here let me put them flowers in the vase with the others.”
“Looks like we picked them in the same spot.” I chuckled.
“Oh these? Mama K said working mine into the vase. “Kalamity picked these up today somewhere along the creek somewhere.” She kept her head down while she talked. Odd. Something was up but I couldn’t put my finger on it.
Kalamity came in with Pops and they took up residence at the table. They managed to have just the right amount of place setting out and everything. “Should I make room for the other girls?” asked. Perry was being awful quiet and just kept glancing towards the door. Not his usual self at all.
“No. They already ate. Honey?” She asked.
“What?” I looked at her wondering why she called me Honey.
“Would you like honey on your cornbread?” My heart started again. “No thank you.”
We all passed around the groceries and started to eat when Ashley walked in to grab her pistol. Perry stood straight up nearly knocking his chair over. Luckily, I caught it.
“What’s wrong?” He asked. He looked like he was prepared for battle.
Ashley turned around and smiled. “What makes you think anything is wrong?”
“Well you came and grabbed your pistol.”
She laughed and walked out.
Perry turned around to us and apologized for his outburst. “I guess it just struck me funny.”
Kalamity spoke up. “No worries Perry. We have a range out back where we play poker. Ashley probably just needed her spare.”
What an odd conversation this was turning out to be. Perry just seemed to turn redder. We finished up our meal and it was cleared of the plates. Mama K said she needed to do dishes and Pops asked Perry if he would like to see the range. Seemed a little like they knew I wanted some privacy. Weird.
It got really quiet when everyone walked out. The room seemed to be producing heat or maybe it was just Tyler’s gaze.
“Mama K said you picked the flowers.”
“I did. I stopped by on my way from town earlierr..” He couldn’t have known. I was sneaky pretty sneaky. Covering my face with my mug to get a drink and get out of his steamy eyes.
“I bet that was a lovely view.” I coughed and sprayed coffee across the table.
He stood up fast before I could hit him with the mist of my coffee spray. “Are you okay?” He looked concerned and came around to my side. Grabbing Mama K’s towel to wipe the mess and pat me on the shoulders.
Choking from the inhalation of my coffee. “I’m… fine.” He patted me again and put the towel back.
“I think I’ve had enough coffee.”
“I think so too.” He smirked. He looked at me like the ole barn cat did when he had a fat mouse. Turning around, he rolled something in his hand on the table.
“So I was meaning to ask you something and I think you have an answer.”
Delighted with where this was going. He looked at me and said. “But I’m not going to ask you now.”
“I guess I don’t know what you are talking about.” He couldn’t possibly know. He’s just guessing.
“Well okay them. I need to talk to that Little Britches.”
Hurt, anger, jealousy, and surprise. I was good with poker face but this man just asked for my cards. I stood abruptly and hauled myself toward the door.
“Where are you going?”
“To get Little Britches!”
Holding my ground and crossing my arms, I stood there.
“How about this? You just give me an answer.” He smirked.
“An answer to what???” I asked.
Standing he walked to the end of the table. “I think you know.”
“No I don’t. Now if you will excuse me, I must go get Little Britches for you.”
“Nevermind. Just go get Perry and we will be off.”
I ran out the door fuming at him. How dare he! I took off around the back to get Perry and smear on a smile.
It was way past dark when I came in. I took out my anger with my shotgun and then proceeded to hang out by the fire. Not my usual fire attire wearing my Sunday best but it would have to do. Damn him. Damn his lips. Damn his good looks. Damned if he thought I was going to admit to anything and damned if he thought I was going to say yes to going to a dance! Damn Damn Damn!!!
Noone asked what happened and I wasn’t about to tell. We walked in and Belle Starr lit a lantern and set in on the table.
“What’s this?” She said.
“What’s what?” I asked. Short tempered at the moment.
“Well come look for yourself Miss Hot Head.”
A folded piece of paper with a pretty rose rock placed on top sit innocently on the table.
“You are looking at it as if it were a snake.”
“Well it might be.” She eyed me.
“Are you just gonna stand there or see what it says?”
She started to reach for it but I snatched it before she could.
Holding the rose rock and paper close, I made my way to my room for the evening.