Friday, December 4, 2009

Part 1

This is, as it is titled, Part 1. The first half of the prologue. I certainly don't want false encouragement, but if you do have something nice to say, please say it! It's really scary to me to have this out here, floating around cyber space! To separate the story from the rambling, I put it in the typewritery font. It's been a really long time since I actually used a typewriter. I used to use one all the time at Carmen's desk. (The Elementary principal, aka my grandmother, had a secretary named Carment Who had a typewriter. Which I enjoyed playing with.)

    Daniel Abraham Brown. A good, strong name for a good, strong man, mother always said. It was true, too. Until the tragedy, at least. Honorable discharge from the Rangers. What could be worse? Why couldn't that Comanche arrow have just killed me? Instead, it destroyed my elbow. They took my arm! Daniel thought these thoughts as he lay in a bed in San Antonio, Texas, unable to leave. His lost arm troubled him, for reasons he couldn't explain. He didn't realize that his dreams, his every want had depended on him being a whole man. Not a cripple. Now he thought he was useless. But of course, none of this ever occurred to him. That preacher, who has two arms, said this's a blessing in disguise. Blessing!? Blessing was not the word Daniel would've used, disguised or not.

    "Captain, as soon as you can travel, we've arranged for your passage home."

Dr. Houston began speaking as soon as he saw Daniel's open eyes.

    "How? On a horse?" Daniel snorted.

    "Well, nothing goes south of here. San Antonio's the end of the line. No one's even heard of Paloma Solitaria."

    "Of course no one's heard of it! I ain't made it into a real place yet! Gimme a horse and a pack horse, I can ride." I got to be able to ride! There's gotta be a way!

    "Your arm's not strong enough to ride, you can take a wagon. 'Sides, we're keeping you longer. Infection could set in, then what would you do?"

    "A wagon wouldn't make it into Paloma Solitaria! The brush is too thick; it'd take weeks longer to take the wagon trail!"

    "Alright, then you can wait until we've made arrangements for you to leave that way." The doctor thought he'd won; he could keep this cranky patient at least a little longer. He'd never let Daniel know, but he was extremely worried about infection. Daniel had been near death when he arrived.

    "I'd make my own arrangements if you'd let me out of this God-forsaken bed!" The bitterness was so apparent in Daniel's voice that Dr. Houston cringed.

    "Ah, yes, well, speakin' of God, that preacher's here to see you again." The preacher's arrival gave the doctor a welcome excuse to leave the room.

    As the preacher entered, he could hear Daniel shouting his refusal to see the preacher.

    "Good luck Parson, he's really bitter today!" the doctor said as he left the room.

    "Doc, you oughta know I don't need luck! I've got God on my side!"

    "Preacher, if I gotta hear that kinda stuff, ya might as well leave now!" Dan said loudly.

    "Captain, I have something I really think you'll wanna hear."

    "Yeah, well, what is it? Then you can leave."

    "Well, Captain, we've received word, and I was asked to share it with ya, and it's important. Well, uh, we got word that your mother is extremely ill, and her doctor said she's…"

    "Doctor? If they called the doctor, she's as good as dead! Since you seem to be the messenger boy 'round here, you can go tell everyone that I'm leavin' tomorrow."

    "Tomorrow?"

    "Yeah, tomorrow! Now leave me alone, I gotta think!"

    "You need more'n thinkin', you need to rely on God ta get ya through this. You got nothin' ta go home to. Do ya want your dyin' mother ta see ya like this? She's better off rememb'rin' you as ya rode off ta join the Rangers!" By the time the preacher was finished, Daniel was sobbing; he knew what the preacher meant. He wasn't talking about his arm at all, but his attitude.

    "Preacher, I made Jesus my Savior a long, long time ago, but I never did make Him Lord. I never got that peace my momma has. If she saw me now…you're right. I shouldn't go home…Not like this."

    "You can get that peace. Boy, all ya gotta do is make Him Lord, too!"

    "I've made such a mess of things! I just don't think I can just let go now!"

    "Yore right. Ya can't. Not in your own strength, ya cain't. But you've already made him Savior; it's not hard to do the rest now!"

To be continued... : )