From last time ...
With that, Ma turned out the lights and crossed the lobby to her room, mumbling under her breath - something about how Mackey was never gonna get THAT lucky.
And now ...
Sarah stood in the middle of the darkened room, eyes closed, arms slightly away from her body, palms turned forward. It was here in this room, where nothing had changed since the first time she saw it, that she felt Jake the most.
Here, where they had made love. Here, where they had spent their first night together. Here, where they both cured each other of loneliness, and despair, and other nameless ills, both real and imagined.
She walked over and sat down on the bed. She turned on the light and then stared at it for the longest time. In her mind she remembered each kiss, each tenderness, each moment of passion, the smell of him, the smell of them, the feel of him, and how he made her feel.
She laid down on the bed, tears welling up in her eyes and running down to her ears.
She woke the next morning without remembering she'd fallen asleep. It was just, suddenly, morning. She was laying in the same position she remembered from the night before.
"I'm sorry, Jake. I've got to get up."
She got up, undressed, and went into the bathroom and took a shower.
As she walked into the lobby, Ma was behind the check in desk and Mackey was just coming in the door with several coffees on a tray.
"Good morning, Sarah. Sleep well?"
"Yeah, Mackey. I did. One of those for me?"
"Yup. One for you, one for me, one for Billy and one for my girlfriend, here."
Ma looked up and smiled.
"Awww. Thank you, Mr. Mackey."
Sarah was startled.
"Is Billy here already?"
"No. He called. He ought to be here in a couple of minutes or so, so I got him a coffee, too."
Sarah took a sip of her coffee.
"When Billy gets here, can you come with us to the Adobe? I want to go over the reports from the mining company before I go back to San Francisco."
Billy walked in the door, and brought a ton of dust in with him.
"Dammit, Injun, how many times do I have to tell you about raisin' al that dust when you pull in here.?"
"Well, old woman, if you'd of gotten that lot paved like we've all been tellin' you for years, there wouldn't be any dust."
"No point in pavin' the lot. Hardly nobody comes in here anymore."
Sarah looked at Mackey, who looked at Two Feathers, who looked at Sarah. And no one said a word. All three suddenly turned away and took sips of coffee, as if taking refuge in their cups would forestall the inevitable argument about selling. And moving.
And this time, it did.
"C'mon, we'd better get going if I'm going to see those reports and still make my plane."
"Okay. You two go out to the car. I gotta say goodbye to my girl, here."
Sarah and Two Feathers walked out the door. Mackey leaned across the desk and kissed Ma on the cheek.
"I'll be back in a little while. And by the way - as long as you're here? So am I."
Ma looked up at him and smiled. She grabbed his hand and kissed it.
"I love you, too, Mr. Mackey."
They rode along in silence for the first few minutes. Sarah leaned forward, rested her chin on the back of the front seat.
"One more, fellas. One more and then Giamatti. And then we're done."
She sat back in the seat.
"I wonder ...."
"What? What do you wonder?"
"I dunno, Mackey. I guess I wonder what that's gonna feel like."