Sarah - You'll be fine

From last time ...

"Sarah, you be careful. Ain't nobody but you and me gonna understand what yer doin'. I'd help ya, if I could. Jake was like my son. But I can't help. You gotta do this by yerself. Well, you do have those two men with ya, I guess. But if Mackey and Two Feathers don't live up to it, you just let me know. By God, I'll make sure they do their share."

Sarah grabbed Ma and held her close.

"I love you, Ma."

"I love you, too, little girl. Now git. He's out there waitin' and the coffee's gettin' cold."

And now ...

Sarah and Mackey were cleaning their weapons at the table in the line shack as Two Feathers came in from having relieved himself.

"Sarah, you need a bathroom out here."

"You're right. Actually, I'm going to need a place out here that's built a bit better than this old line shack. Do you know any people, Billy? In the construction business, I mean."

"Sure. My uncle Running Black Bear has a construction business out on the res. He does good work, too. He could build you a good place."

"What kind of buildings does he do?"

"Not white man's stuff, if that's what you mean. He says white men don't know how to build in the desert. Their buildings fall apart in no time."

"So? What does HE do?"

"He builds in adobe. Easy to cool in the summer - easy to heat in the winter."

"I need a cellar. Can he do that?"

"He built the cellar under Jake's old store. Solid concrete. Uncle worked on the Dam in the 30's - learned all about white man's concrete. That's why his adobes are so strong."

"How long would it take him to build me a place, do you think?"

"I don't know, Sarah, but I'll ask. How big?"

"I don't know .. 2 bedrooms, I guess .. a kitchen, a bathroom and a living room. Maybe 1200 square feet."

"Okay. I'll ask him, tonight."

"Good. You can tell me what he says when you come to take me to the airport tomorrow."

Mackey looked up in surprise.

"You're leaving?"

"Yeah, Sarge. I gotta get home to my Mom and Jerry. Why, did you think I was going to stay?"

"Well, I don't know - I hadn't really thought about it, I guess. I just assumed ..."

"There's no point in me being here, for now. If you were planning to stay, you could supervise the construction, here. If you're planning to stay."

"Yeah, I guess I could do that."

"Good. But one thing. I want all the explosives and ammunition that's up in Ma's attic moved out to the new gun shop as soon as the Sheriff clears it as a crime scene. Then, after this place is built, I would like it all to get moved into the cellar out here. Okay?"

"Sure. But why?"

"I don't want to take any chances that Ma gets found out by Giamatti's people. The sooner that stuff is out of there, the better I like it. So Billy, as soon as they quit comin' around the store, you gotta let us know, okay?"

"Sure, Sarah. What time you want me to come pick you up tomorrow?"

"Just get me to the 7PM shuttle out of McCarran."

"Right. See you tomorrow."

Billy left the shack and Mackey and Sarah continued cleaning weapons.

"You know, Sarah, you would have made a heck of a Marine. We coulda used you durin' the War."

"Thanks, Mackey. But I don't think I could've done it. It's bad enough as it is. You saw me today. I was sick!"

"Sarah, every good sniper I knew hated, HATED, killing. The ones that enjoyed it seldom survived for very long. Eventually they'd get careless and that was it. It just takes once. Just once."

"Don't let me get careless, Sarge."

"I don't think you'll ever have to worry about that, Sarah. After all, you get sick. And as long as you get sick, you'll be fine."


Tara R. said...

I love your attention to detail, character building.

Big Mark 243 said...

Yeah, Sarah would have made a good NCO in the corp, I agree with Mackey.

Loved the way she issued orders and still allowed for Mackey to reassure her. No matter how competent we are, I think there is always some insecurity there.

Jientje said...

Ma should not be put in danger, that's right.

Heather said...

the character building in this is perfection. and you are such an incredible storyteller.

Holly said...

Heh, imagining Sarah as a Marine. She's quite a character.

Unknown said...

I can't wait to read more. I remember the story. You are doing a great job of building the character. Nice.