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 Thrown For a Loop Chapters 1 & 2

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HannaHeyes

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PostSubject: Thrown For a Loop Chapters 1 & 2   Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:06 pm

Thrown For a Loop

Chapter 1

The cool early Autumn rain had dissipated leaving a translucent fog hanging over the valley. Nocturnal insects had started to perform their droning song as the evening twilight faded slowly into obscurity. The only other sound to be heard was the squish of horses' hooves on the muddy trail. Two damp and weary riders stared ahead, looking for any sign of civilization.
 
"I thought there was supposed to be a town around here somewhere."
 
Hannibal Heyes looked over at his partner Kid Curry to see him scowling under the floppy brown hat. "There is...somewhere..."
 
"Well there better be. I ain't plannin' to spend another night sleepin' on this soggy ground."
 
"Don't worry Kid. You won't have to. I'll find you a rock to sleep on."
 
"I'm fixin' to find a rock to brain you with."
 
Heyes tried to hold back a smile as he turned to face forward again. They rode on quietly. As they turned a bend, he pointed up ahead. "Look there. I think I see the outlines of some buildings."
 
Another five minutes found them riding past a sign declaring the start of a town. Heyes pulled his mount to a stop as he quizzically looked at it. "Destiny Loop?" What kinda name is that for a town?"
 
"As long as there's a sheriff that don't know us, a place to get a hot meal, and a hotel with an empty bed, they could name it Outhouse for all I care."
 
Heyes clicked his horse back into motion and followed Kid toward what appeared to be the main street. Momentarily, they passed the sheriff's office. "Don't seem to be anyone we know in the law business here."
 
Kid was quietly checking out the surroundings. "Maybe we ought to keep going Heyes. This place has a weird feeling about it."
 
"What? Just two minutes ago you were ready to kill if you had to spend another night outside."
 
"Yeah, well, I'm havin' second thoughts."
 
"Don't be ridiculous. This is just another town on the trail, like all the rest. You'll feel better after some food and sleep."
 
"Maybe..."
 
They stopped and checked into the hotel, then after taking their horses to the livery, hurried to the cafe to get some dinner before it closed.
 
Later, back in their room, Heyes had settled himself down to read a little. "Well, Kid. Feeling a little better now?"
 
Curry threw the quilt back on his bed and climbed in. "Yeah, I guess so. That pot roast and this semi-comfy bed is helpin'." It wasn't two minutes after he laid down before he was snoring softly.
 
A little while later, Heyes put his book down on the nightstand and finally fell asleep.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
"COCK-A-DOODLE-DOOOO...COCK-A-DOO..."
 
BANG
 
"SQUAAAWWKK..."
 
"What the..." Heyes jerked up in bed and grabbed his gun. After seeing nobody in the room with him, he got up and looked out the window. In the street below, the sheriff or deputy was pushing a staggering drunk who had apparently just shot a rooster toward the jail. A hand was run through the dark hair as Heyes put his gun back in his holster. He was getting ready to wash his face when the Kid unlocked the door and walked in.
 
"Mornin' Heyes."
 
Heyes grunted in reply. "Where have you been this early?"
 
"Went out to get some breakfast and a paper. Didn't want to wake ya, so I just brought you something back."
 
"I hope it includes coffee."
 
"Got it right here." Kid set the steaming cup on a table. "Were you awake in time to see the excitement?"
 
"The excitement is what woke me up. What happened out there?"
 
"Some guy spent all night with a whiskey bottle and didn't appreciate that rooster's wake-up call."
 
Heyes snorted a quiet laugh and turned back to the wash basin.
 
"Since we're runnin' low on money, I was glancin' at this paper while I ate and saw a couple ads for jobs. One's out at a small ranch patchin' up a barn. The other's deliverin' some documents out to a mine."
 
Heyes paused to peer at his cousin through the wash basin mirror. "Let me guess. You chose the delivery job."
 
Kid shot Heyes his most charming, innocent smile. "Well, I figured this time, I'd do the decidin' instead of that coin of yours."
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Heyes stood in the livery stable tacking up his horse. Out of the corner of his eye, he could tell the stable boy mucking out the next stall kept staring at him. Heyes turned his head and touched his hat in greeting. The boy nodded his head back and turned his attention back to his work. The only other time he looked up was to watch Heyes lead his mare out into the street. A smile creased his young face as the ex-outlaw mounted up and started his mare around the right corner of the livery.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Kid had already picked up the mining documents and was on his way out of town. The morning air was pleasant as the sun drifted in and out of cloud cover. He smiled smugly as he thought of the fact that he had gotten the cushy job this time. Heyes usually ended up with it either through manipulation or that dratted coin of his. He could just see Heyes cursing to himself up on the roof of a barn trying to patch it. Heyes wasn't the best when it came to carpentry. He'd say it was a safe bet his partner would return to the hotel with more than one cut or bruise on his hands. Kid let his horse plod lazily down the trail. No need to be in too much of a hurry.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Heyes was headed in the opposite direction after he had finally decided not to stop at the general store for any food or supplies. Besides, as Kid had pointed out, they were low on funds and the job ad hadn't said anything about needing your own tools.
 
The ranch lay just about twenty minutes ride from the town. He kept a close watch behind him as he rode. He didn't know why the stable boy had been staring at him, but he figured if he'd been recognized, he'd be running from a posse by now.
 
As he rode, he thought about how unfair it was that he had ended up with the job that required the most work. At least the Kid had a much longer ride than he did.
 
The ranch came into view. As he got closer, he groaned when he saw the repairs that needed to be done were on the barn's roof. Next time, Kid was definitely getting the hard job. He rode up to the ranch house where a middle-aged lady appeared on the porch wiping her hands on a dish towel.
 
"Can I help you with something?" she asked as she looked Heyes over. Heyes dismounted.
 
"Howdy ma'am. My name's Joshua Smith. I'm here about the job you had in the paper, patching up the barn?"
 
"Oh yes, yes. It's not a very big job, just finishing up patching the hole in the barn's roof. Shouldn't take no more than a day or two. My husband had started the work, but he got a telegraph saying his ma was real sick and he left to see her. He put the ad in the paper before he left so hopefully we could get the repairs done before any more rain. We have such a small ranch we never hired any ranch hands. Will you listen to me just goin' on and on. Come on in Mr. Smith and have a cup of coffee while I tell you about the job. By the way, I'm Mrs. Baker."
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Kid was allowing himself to enjoy the ride even though his senses were still on guard. A good thing they were too. Up ahead, on the side of the road in a grove of trees, his eyes caught the slightest glint of sunlight hitting metal. He slowed his black gelding to a stop and pulled his Colt out of his holster.
 
"Hey up there," he called out in a commanding voice. "You might as well unload your gun and throw both the bullets and gun out on the road and come out of those trees. If I don't see both tossed out, I'm gonna have to start shootin' and don't think I can't hit you at this distance."
 
A normal man probably couldn't have made the shot, but the Kid knew his abilities well. And to prove his point to the would-be bandit, he shot the tree limb above where the man's head would be. It wasn't a few seconds later that he saw a handful of bullets and a gun slung into the road followed by a decidedly disgruntled highwayman with his hands raised. Kid kept his .45 trained on the man as he rode up to him.
 
"You know, hiding in full shadow is alot more effective than in partial sunlight," Curry said as he dismounted.
 
The man scowled at him. "Just who are you mister?"
 
"Somebody that's teachin' you a lesson. Now lay down there with your hands behind your back."
 
The man did as he was told as Kid dug some rawhide thongs from his saddlebag. "And just what lesson is that?" the man growled.
 
"Be careful who you try to rob."
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Heyes had been told all the supplies he needed to fix the roof was in the barn. He went in and spotted a crate full of various tools next to a couple of barrels. As he reached down to grab a hammer, he heard a hiss from behind one of the barrels. He froze, his eyes searching desperately for the snake he knew was there. He couldn't find it. It was well hidden in the shadows and he had no idea how close it might be to him. He quickly debated the best course of action to take. Should he try to back up slowly so he wouldn't startle the creature or pull back fast in case it struck out at him? He decided and mentally prepared himself to jerk back as fast as he could possibly move.
 
He took a deep breath and jumped back as far as he could get from the crate and barrels. As soon as he had started to move, he heard an ungodly screech and a cat ran out from behind the barrel not happy at having its nap interrupted by this interloper.
 
Heyes released the breath he was still holding and frowned at the retreating animal. He frowned yet again when he saw what he had managed to jump on top off. "I'm beginning to hate nature," he grumpily muttered. He tried to wipe the brown mess off his boots and then gathered the tools and nails needed and went around the side of the barn where a ladder stood leaning against the wall.
 
To get the stuff he needed to work with up on the roof, he got a bucket, put his things in it, and tied a rope to the handle. He then climbed the ladder and stood on the edge of the roof to pull the bucket up. Once in the air, the stuff shifted in the bucket causing it to lean to one side as he pulled it up. Heyes didn't pay it any attention and halfway up, the bucket caught on a protruding nail in the ladder. Before he could stop pulling the rope so it could right itself, all the weight being on one side caused the bucket to tilt enough to drop its contents back to the ground.
 
'I should of just stayed in bed today,' Heyes thought as he descended the ladder to gather up the tools and nails laying about. This time, he made sure to distribute the weight evenly in the bucket and once back on the roof, stood away from the ladder to pull it up. From his vantage point, he noticed the two cows and horse in the pasture had stopped eating to watch him.
 
"Enjoying the show?" he called out sarcastically. As if in reply, the horse snorted and lowered its head to continue grazing.
 
Finally, after a few minutes, Heyes had settled himself next to the hole in the roof and started to work.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Kid had deposited the unruly bandit next to the road tied to a tree. He lead the man's horse off just around the bend and left it to graze to its heart's content. He figured it would take the man at least an hour to get himself out of the trussed up state he'd left him in. Even then, he'd have to locate his horse, so Kid wasn't worrying too much about him.
 
The rest of the ride to the mine was pretty uneventful thankfully. As he rode up, two men started walking towards him. One of the men was apparently the mine foreman and he didn't look happy at all.
 
"Who are you and what are you doing here?" he demanded.
 
"My name is Jones and I was hired to bring these documents up here," Kid explained as he dismounted.
 
"I told that banker not to be sending anymore men up here to try to serve me that nonsense. Now, you just git right back up on your horse and go tell Reynolds my brother owns this land fair and square and he ain't got no legal reason to foreclose on it."
 
Kid stared at the irate man. "Look mister, I have no idea what you're talkin' about. I'm just supposed to give you this envelope and then go get paid and that's what I aim to do. Whatever business you got with this Reynolds guy don't involve me none. I'm just tryin' to do a job."
 
"Well, as soon as you rode onto this property you got involved."
 
The man's companion stepped forward to put in his two cents. "Looks like old Reynolds went and hired himself a gunslinger to do his dirty work. A man don't wear his gun like that less'n he means to use it."
 
Kid turned an icy blue stare at the foreman's minion. "I ain't a gunslinger and even if I was, I wouldn't hire out my gun. Now, you gonna take this envelope?"
 
"No, we're not. You better just take it and git. We ain't gonna tell you no more." The man backed up as he spoke and squared up to Curry.
 
"And I ain't gonna tell YOU no more that I ain't leavin' until this document's delivered." Kid could tell by the man's cockiness that he wasn't going to back down. He sighed inwardly. This was supposed to have been the easy job. He readied himself for the inevitable.
 
His opponent sneered at him. A tense few seconds passed and the man went for his gun only to find it shot off his hip before he could grab it. Kid reholstered his revolver and turned back to the foreman who had his mouth gaped open. "Now, I suggest you take this and let me be on my way." The man only nodded in reply.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
"SON OF A ...," Heyes did his best to surpress a yell as he hit his hand for what seemed like the hundredth time. He looked down at the newest bruise forming and added carpentry to his list of jobs too hard on the back, or in this case, hands.
 
After the pain had subsided a bit, he reached for another shingle. There was none to be found. He rolled his eyes as he got up to go down the ladder yet again to get some more.
 
There were a couple of rungs left to step down onto when his foot slipped and he fell flat on his butt. He lay there a moment gritting his teeth. When he got up, pain temporarily shot up his back. He shook it off though as he was pretty sure one couldn't break one's rear.
 
He gathered together some shingles and went back to the roof.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
The sun was low on the horizon when Heyes decided to quit for the day. He stretched as he stood up. At least he was almost finished. He COULD'VE been finished had he not had his mishaps and trudged up and down that ladder a thousand times. Plus, he could've worked a little harder. Tomorrow, Kid could come help him so it wouldn't take long to complete.
 
He reached the ground and went up to the house to let Mrs. Baker know how much he had gotten done and that he was leaving. She insisted on paying him half of what she would owe him when the job was completed. He gladly took it and told her he would be back in the morning.
 
He made it back to the saloon about five minutes before Kid showed up. He was leaning on the bar looking kinda rough when Curry walked over to him and ordered a drink.
 
"You look like you had a good day," Kid quipped sipping his beer.
 
Heyes just glared at him. He decided to change the subject. "Did you enjoy your leisurely ride to deliver that document?"
 
It was Kid's turn to glare. "I've had better days."
 
"Well, I'll bet you didn't have as much aggravation as I had."
 
"Oh yeah. That's one bet you'd lose Joshua." He gulped down the rest of the beer. "I'm going after some dinner. You comin'?"
 
Heyes nodded and finished off his own drink.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
After they had finished eating and filling each other in on the day's events, they retired to their hotel room.
 
"With both of us working on that roof tomorrow, we should be done by noon and can relax the rest of the day," Heyes said removing his boots.
 
"Think that lady will pay extra since both of us will be workin'?"
 
"I'm sure I could convince her to." Heyes reclined against the bed's headboard and opened his book.
 
"Well, I sure hope you're more successful at that than you were hittin' nails," Kid smirked looking at Heyes' hands.
 
Heyes snorted at him and started to read. Kid lay down and was asleep within minutes.
 
Heyes read for about ten minutes then suddenly felt extremely sleepy himself. He turned to place his book on the nightstand. Before he could lay it down, it slipped out of his hand. He tried to grab it, but only succeeded in tearing the paperback cover. Rolling his eyes, he picked it up off the floor and put it on the table.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
COCK-A-DOODLE-DOOOO...COCK-A-DOO..."
 
BANG
 
"SQUAAAWWKK..."
 
"What the..." Heyes jerked up in bed and grabbed his gun. After seeing nobody in the room with him, he got up and looked out the window. In the street below, the sheriff or deputy was pushing a staggering drunk who had apparently just shot a rooster toward the jail. A hand was run through the dark hair as Heyes put his gun back in his holster. He froze where he stood and a confused look appeared on his face. "Now wait a minute..." He was still standing there when the Kid unlocked the door and walked in.
 
"Mornin' Heyes."
 
Heyes grunted in reply but didn't move.
 
"What's wrong with you?"
 
Heyes shook his head. "Uh...nothing. Where've you been?"
 
"Went out to get some breakfast and a paper. Didn't want to wake ya, so I just brought you something back."
 
"I hope it includes coffee." Heyes stopped and furrowed his brow.
 
"Got it right here." Kid set the steaming cup on a table. "Were you awake in time to see the excitement?"
 
"That's what woke me up," Heyes answered absently scratching his head.
 
"What's wrong with you? You fall out of bed and hit your head or somethin'?"
 
"No...uh...you ever felt like you've done the exact same thing before?"
 
"Don't guess so. Unless you're talking about runnin' from posses or somethin' like that. We've certainly done that before."
 
"No. I mean the EXACT same thing. Same things happening, saying the exact same
thing..."
 
"You've lost me Heyes. Do you feel hot? You got a fever?"
 
"I ain't sick Kid! This same scenario has happened before, yesterday morning."
 
"Heyes, yesterday mornin' we was pickin' ourselves up off a cold, damp ground gettin' ready to drink that sludge you call coffee."
 
"No we weren't. We were here in this town. A gunshot woke me up."
 
"You must have had a dream Heyes. We just got here last night."
 
"It WASN'T a dream Kid! We were here. I spent all day working. Just look at the bruises on my hands."
 
Kid looked at Heyes' hands as he held them up. After a second, he looked his cousin in the eyes. "There ain't no bruises there."
 
"What?!" Heyes examined his hands for himself. Just as Kid had said, the bruises weren't there. He dropped back down on the side of the bed. Then he noticed his book. He was sure that he had ripped the cover last night. But there it was, perfectly intact. After a moment, he went to his saddlebag and retrieved the little bit of whiskey he had and dumped it all in his coffee.
 
Hoping his partner's temporary insanity was over, Kid told him what he'd found in the paper. "Since we're runnin' low on money, I was glancin' at this paper while I ate and saw a couple ads for jobs. One's out at a small ranch patchin' up a barn. The other's deliverin' some documents out to a mine."
 
Heyes just looked at Kid. Maybe he was right and it had all been a dream. He'd heard of people having such realistic dreams that they'd think they'd actually happened. That had to be what was going on. There was no other explanation for it.
 
Kid continued. "And I figured this time, I'd do the decidin' instead of that coin of yours. I'm takin' the delivery job."

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HannaHeyes

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PostSubject: Re: Thrown For a Loop Chapters 1 & 2   Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:13 pm

Chapter 2
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Hannibal Heyes walked down the hotel stairs in a sort of daze. He couldn't shake the strange feeling he had no matter how much he tried to convince himself it was just a dream. He handed his room key over to the desk clerk and walked out into the street. Looking around, he saw the sheriff leave and lock the door to his office. There were some kids playing in front of the general store. A lady was sweeping the porch of the boarding house down on the corner. Lots of people going about their morning business.
 
If he HAD been here yesterday, he hadn't noticed most of what was happening at that very moment. But he had been in kind of a foul mood and in a hurry when he stalked to the livery stable and could've just not paid much attention to what anyone was actually doing. He shook his head and started walking to get his horse.
 
He was still deep in his own thoughts as he entered the livery and started saddling up his mare. Kid had to be right. It had been a dream. Days just didn't repeat themselves. There was no logical way that it could happen that he knew of. And as much as he kept up with the daily newspapers wherever he could get them, he would've read about any new scientific discoveries.
 
He mounted up and rode out of the stable, a concentrated look on his face as he decided he wasn't going to think anymore about something that crazy. He had a job to go do, a physical, laborious job, thanks to his partner. He turned his horse to the left around the livery corner and almost rode straight into a man who was coming around to the front.
 
"Oh, sorry sir," Heyes said as he sharply pulled his mare up. "Didn't see you there."
 
"Better git your mind on what you're doin' there young man," growled a grizzly old farmer. "No need to be in such a hurry."
 
Heyes just tipped his hat in apology and grinned as the man stared hard at him. "Yes sir, I'll do just that." He had more pertinent things on his mind than to argue with an old timer.
 
As Heyes rode off, he didn't notice the young man who had been cleaning the stalls watching him and smiling. He also didn't notice the old man pause when he reached the livery door, then turn to head toward the sheriff's office.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
"SON OF A ...," Heyes did his best to surpress a yell as he hit his hand for what seemed like the hundredth time. He looked down at the newest bruise forming and added carpentry to his list of jobs too hard on the back, or in this case, hands. Oh well. Maybe the pain would keep that nagging feeling of repetition out of the back of his mind.
 
After the pain had subsided a bit, he reached for another shingle. There were none to be found on the roof with him. He rolled his eyes as he got up to go down the ladder yet again to get some more. As he neared the edge, he heard what sounded like four or five people walking up to the barn.
 
"Hannibal Heyes...we know you're up there and you're under arrest. Now, you slowly come to where we can see you with your hands raised. And don't think about trying anything. We've got five firearms down here pointed in your direction."
 
Heyes stopped dead in his tracks. Where had those people come from? All the hammering he had been doing must have drowned out the sound of horses riding up. The barn being out away from the house hadn't helped any either. Panic started to rise up in him, but he forced himself to calm down. Shaking his head and raising his hands, he finished walking to the edge of the roof. Sure enough, there was the sheriff and four posse members pointing their guns up at him.
 
"Afternoon Sheriff," he called down. "What's all this about? I'm not Hannibal Heyes. My name's Joshua Smith."
 
"Don't think so Mr. Heyes. I had someone in town hunt me down and tell me they knew what you looked like and that they'd seen you ride out in this direction. Took a little time to form a small posse and some tracking, but we found you. Now, slowly take your gun out and toss it down here."
 
Heyes sighed as he slowly complied. This certainly hadn't happened in his dream. "Sheriff, I'm telling you whoever told you that is wrong. This has happened before, me being mistaken for Heyes. It'll just turn out being an inconvenience for both me and you."
 
"Well, it'll just have to be an inconvenience. I'm taking you in. Come on down this ladder."
 
Heyes descended the ladder, rolling his eyes in the process. There were a couple of rungs left to step down onto when his foot slipped and he fell flat on his butt. He lay there a moment gritting his teeth. He heard a couple of the posse members snickering.
 
The sheriff was even trying to surpress a smile. "Just...stay down there while we get these handcuffs on you."
 
Heyes let himself be cuffed and helped up on his horse that one of the deputies had retrieved. The sheriff and his posse then mounted up. "Let's go men and keep a look out. We got ten thousand dollars here and I don't want to lose it."
 
'I hope whoever recognized me didn't get a look at the Kid,' Heyes thought as he was led back to town.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
The jailhouse of Destiny Loop had two small cells, but that was two too many for Hannibal Heyes.
 
"Sheriff Murray listen, you have to believe me, I am NOT Hannibal Heyes. My name really is Joshua Smith." He was lightly pushed into one of the cells as he kept protesting. I'm sure there's just been a mistake." He stifled a shutter as the door locked shut.
 
"We'll see in just a minute. I sent my deputy to fetch the man that identified you."
 
Murray had no more than got the words out and sat down at his desk when the door opened and his deputy strode in with the old man Heyes had almost run over earlier behind him.
 
The Sheriff stood back up. "Alright Mister Turner. Is this the man you say is Hannibal Heyes?" He pointed to the cell.
 
Old man Turner stepped up to the bars and answered, "Yessir Sheriff. I'd remember him anywhere. Why, that no-good hoodlum almost ran me over this morning when I's going to the livery to get my wagon and go home."
 
Heyes gave his most charming smile. "I don't believe we've ever met Mister ... Turner... was it? You've just mistaken me for that outlaw. It's happened before. Why just last week..."
 
"Save your stories sonny. I never forget a face. Saw you once years ago when you and that Plummer gang was hoo-haaing it up in the saloon at Boom Town. I was the bartender there for years before I got enough money to buy myself a little farm. You stayed there half the night drinking and playing poker while every gal in the place tried to get your attention."
 
Heyes got quiet. It was no use arguing anymore. He'd tried all day to convince the lawman that he was just an ordinary citizen, but now, the Sheriff had confirmation. Heyes remembered the saloon he was talking about vaguely. He and the Plummer Gang had been celebrating their most recent successful robbery and had stayed until the wee hours of the morning. It must've been a good night he mused, because he had awoken in the arms of one of the painted ladies the next day.
 
As the ex-bartender turned around, Heyes sat down on the bunk and ran his hand through his hair. At least the man had seen him with Jim Plummer and not Kid Curry.
 
"Now Sheriff, if you don't mind, I need to be going. I should've been back at the farm hours ago. We'll talk tomorrow about the reward money." Turner left and Sheriff Murray smiled in Heyes' direction.
 
"Well, Mister Heyes. I wonder where that partner of yours is."
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
Kid Curry walked into the saloon when he returned from his delivery job and leaned on the bar. He ordered a beer and wondered where Heyes was. 'Probably worn out from having to actually do a little work today. Wouldn't surprise me if he's already in bed complainin' about how hard a day he's had', though the Kid. He'd just took a swallow of amber liquid when he caught the words 'Heyes' and 'arrested' from the other end of the bar. He caught himself as he almost spit out his beer. Nonchalantly, he turned toward the man. "Didn't mean to overhear, but did you say somebody was arrested here today?" Kid asked politely trying not to look too interested.
 
"Yessiree. Wasn't just somebody either. It was Hannibal Heyes! I was part of the posse what brought him in."
 
"Hannibal Heyes huh. What about that."
 
"It was something. Old man Turner recognized him. Too bad he didn't have Kid Curry with him though. I'd a loved to have been able to help bring both of them in."
 
"Does Turner know what Curry looks like too?"
 
"Don't think so. Said he remembered Heyes from the Plummer gang and said he was alone when he ran into him today."
 
"Yeah, LITERALLY, ran into him!" the man's friend added which brought laughter from both of them.
 
"What do you mean?" Kid asked curious.
 
"Farmer Turner said he was heading into the livery when Heyes came around the corner on his horse and 'bout ran him over!" This brought more laughter from the two who apparently were getting a little soused.
 
Kid nodded at them and turned to leave the saloon. He had to go talk to Heyes.
 
~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~^~
 
A solitary figure moved silently down the alley behind the sheriff's office. He looked up and saw a small barred window. He quickly found an abandoned crate to stand on and hoped he could get his cousin's attention from within. He slowly rose to peek over the window's edge. He glimpsed a familiar dark hair of head just below him. He got off the crate and picked up a couple of pebbles. Them he climbed back up and dropped them on his partner's head.
 
Heyes looked up annoyed but then realized what rocks dropping in out of nowhere could mean. He glanced toward the front of the office and saw Sheriff Murray in deep concentration on some paperwork. He quietly got up and stood on the bunk to look out.
"Sure am glad to see you," he mouthed as silently as he could.
 
"You'll do anything to get out of work won't ya?" Kid smiled.
 
Heyes smirked at him. "Listen, they found all the lockpicks I had on me. You'll have to get me my other ones out of my gray coat."
 
"Alright. I'll be back as soon as I find them and pack up, then you can let yourself out."
 
Heyes shook his head in agreement then got off the bunk before the Sheriff had a chance to look up and see him. The he sat back down and leaned against the wall.
 
Curry stepped off the crate and made his way to the end of the alley. He was glad it was dark out. Maybe he wouldn't be seen. He stepped out of the alley about the same time Murray's deputy walked around the corner of the building.
 
"Hey," the deputy called out. "What were you doing back there?"
 
Kid rolled his eyes and turned around. "Nothin'. Just got lost on my way back to the hotel."
 
"Hotel's on the other end of town. Kinda hard to miss."
 
"I just got into town this evening and got turned around in the dark. Well, g'night." Curry started to walk off.
 
"Now wait just a minute. I may have a little alcohol in me but that still sounds funny. I think we should go in and see the Sheriff."
 
Kid sighed with his eyes shut, then turned around again. "That's no problem," he lied.
 
"Alright then. Let's go." The deputy waited until Curry walked in front of him and followed him around to the jail's door. They went in and Heyes' eyes widened when he saw who it was. "Sheriff, I saw this man come out of the alley behind the jail. Looked kinda strange to me so I brought in here."
 
"In the back huh?" Murray stood up and walked around his desk. "That is a little strange, especially when we've just today arrested a notorious criminal."
 
"Like I told your deputy here, I'm new in town and just got turned around trying to get back to the hotel." Kid's face was cool as a cucumber while on the inside he was sweating bullets.
 
"Well, that may be. Could you remove your hat please?"
 
Curry hesitated slightly but the complied. Heyes just put his head in his hands.
 
Murray looked him over. "You know what else is strange mister? You kind of fit the description of our incarcerated outlaw's partner. Now there would be a good reason to be in the alley behind the jail. Maybe planning a jailbreak?"
 
"Now Sheriff, I have no idea what you're talking about. I just came from delivering some documents up to the mine. Just took my horse to the livery. You can check my story if you want."
 
Murray nodded at his deputy who was still standing behind Curry. Promptly, Kid felt his Colt being lifted out of its holster. "Oh, I am gonna check. But I can't do it tonight. Hafta wait 'til morning. So in the meantime, you can spend the night here."
 
The Kid inwardly moaned. Murray continued.
 
"Look at this way. I'll be saving you a night's rent at the hotel."
 
Kid stared at the Sheriff through narrow eyes. Murray motioned him to the unoccupied cell. Curry went in and sat down as the door shut. As soon as Murray went back up front, Kid looked over and caught Heyes' eyes. The looked they shared spoke volumns. It was going to be a long night.

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Thrown For a Loop Chapters 1 & 2
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