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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Larkspur: A Sidewinder Tale - 4. Chapter 4 The Lord Ain't No Fool

Back and forth... while riding by the seat of their pants...

 

The Lord Ain't No Fool

 

 

“Dang it all,” a previously silent Coy muttered as he maneuvered the team and wagon out of the shade and onto the well-packed dirt road in front of Red Apple Farm. The heat from the overhead sun hit them like a punch.

“What’s bit your backside?” Boone asked from beside him, knowing full well why Coy was agitated. He tried his best not to smirk. The man’s stewing had been amusing him, but he was best not to let Coy know that.

“Just pondering why Mitch don’t want Will to know he’s here. Damn it! Don’t it bother you none he wants us to help him hide from the man?”

“Not a bit, and I don’t consider it hiding so much as avoiding something possibly unpleasant, which is his right. And, since he’s our guest, we’re obliged to be considerate of such. No matter what you might think, I can’t imagine Will is a threat to Mitch… not a decent man like we know him to be.”

“Not saying he’s a threat,” Coy protested. “Not what I’m saying at all.”

“Then what are you saying?” Boone, beginning to feel bad for Coy’s deep disappointment, turned his head away to check that the load of pine logs wasn’t shifting—they’d become experts at tying them down but it always paid to keep an eye out for potential trouble. Transporting logs could be dangerous. “Two more loads like this and we’ll have plenty enough for the next section of the barn, and likely some left over. We’ll get all the good long beams we’re needing for the roof out of this one.”

Coy nodded as he shifted his gaze from the team to Boone. “I know what you’re doing.”

“What? What am I doing besides talking about supplies for the barn?” Boone asked as innocent-like as he could, knowing he had next to no chance of fooling Coy.

“You’re trying to point my mind elsewhere, but it ain’t going to work. You’re thinking I want to stick my nose where it don’t belong,” he accused.

“No,” Boone fibbed. His attempt to tread careful was not going well at all.

“You do so—you can’t fool me, Boone Dixon. You already said it last night, and again at breakfast—and you’re trying not to say it again, so you talk about our load like I don’t already know what’s there and what’s needed. Well, maybe I am sticking my nose in Mitch’s business, but I want to help him if I can. While I can. There’s a sadness in him he tries to hide, but I can see it, and I don’t like it’s there. Can’t you understand that?”

“I do… of course I do. It’s cause of that big heart of yourn, and you’ve been fretting since you found out he’s not a well man, but didn’t we just give our word to stay out of it?”

Coy sighed, appearing uncertain while still managing to look stubborn. “All we promised was we wouldn’t mention Mitch’s name to Will. I’ve… happens I’ve seen too much death in those close to us, and with that comes regrets we could have done something different, but never did the times we had the chance. It weighs heavy on me.”

Boone reached over and gripped his man’s shoulder, all amusement at Coy’s frustration gone. “I know. I have them regrets too. Fact is, we haven’t had much luck in stopping anything, with your family or mine, or with Wes and Lee… or Dan, who shouldn’t have been on that street no how. That was a damn shame, but folks die, and it ain’t up to us who it happens to… or when.”

“Maybe so, but there’s always a chance to make some difference—we can at least make the sheriff’s last days better than him dying on a trail by his lonesome,” Coy said, determination clear in his words.

“And I know you feel guilt for what happened to Dan, but don’t be blaming yourself. Weren’t your fault he took on a faster gun like my brother, and short of tying him up, you couldn’t have stopped him no matter what you told him. I wasn’t meaning that as one of them regrets.”

“I know… and I know you weren’t. Did what I thought was best for everyone at the time, and the rest was in God’s hands. Took a while, but I’ve come to accept the truth of that.”

“Happy you do, but I hope you understand this thing with the sheriff is something different in my mind. I feel it in my bones we can help him have a better end, and don’t ask me why that is, cause I don’t rightly know.”

Boone was always thankful for the spirit of the man. He felt things deeper than most cowboys would admit, and never gave up at anything, not when his mind was set. There was this new trust he had in hisself Boone had watched grow from the time they’d reached Larkspur.

Might be it was because he’d managed to keep Boone alive after he was swept downriver, when he most certainly should have died. But it could have been because they’d finally figured out where they stood with each other, after years of fighting Will Diamond’s interference and attempts to completely control his younger brother. “You know I have faith in you, Coy, but just what are you planning?”

“Can’t hardly say I’m planning anything, but I don’t think he should be going anywhere, and I ain’t giving up on him seeing the doc before he sets off, if that’s what he decides to do.”

“Course you’re not.”

“Heard him coughing bad over at the paddock before we left. It might be better like he says, but it’s still there.”

“I heard him too. Sounded about like I did a few months back, no worse, and lots of men coughed something fierce back in Red Bluff.”

“I suppose.”

“That don’t stop you from fretting, though, does it?”

Coy shook his head once. “You heard him. He don’t have no one else—no one was there to sit at his bedside when he was struggling to breathe, knowing each breath could be his last. That Mrs. Carruthers shouldn’t be at anyone’s bedside. She’s a sour old biddy who don't do nothing but scowl at everyone and everything while she sits there like she’s got a board tied to her back. Don't know why Doc Bailey has her work for him. All those folks in Red Bluff, yet Mitch set out on his own, expecting he wouldn’t make it any distance. Terrible sad he had not one soul to worry for him.”

“But he does have someone now.”

“Yep, he does. He’s got us… he’s got you and me if we can just convince him to stick around. Might be Will Merrick can help us with that.”

Hearing such from Coy surprised Boone. “You truly think that?”

“I ain’t sure of it, but I got to trust my gut.”

Boone was about to protest, and warn him it could all backfire badly, but decided it was best not to say another word given the state Coy was in. But, he would try to rein him in where he could…not that he expected it would do much good.

 

The ripping whine of the sawblade could be heard as Coy steered Molly and Duke down one side of the mill. They knew exactly where Will wanted the logs piled—close to the big back doors, but not blocking them from swinging open or closed. They’d just set the brake and hopped to the ground when the sawing noise stopped. Will appeared shortly after out of the murky, dusty interior, covered in sawdust. Now Boone could hear the water sloshing off the large wooden wheel turning the gears what spun the big saw blade, and as always, he marveled at the system which made milling possible.

“Howdy, boys. Was expecting you earlier. Figured you’d decided to come another day because of this damn heat. Most folks slow to a stop when it’s this hot out.”

“Didn’t seem so bad at our place before we left, but we… ah… we got us a late start today,” Coy said, his eyes shifting nervously from Will to Boone.

Boone stepped in quickly. “Daisy dropped her foal last evening. He’s a real special one, he is.”

“A colt, eh? I bet he’s a big ‘un too, like you said your filly was.”

“Yep. Biggest and finest we’ve ever seen come out of a mare.”

Will beamed at Boone’s words. “Always thought highly of Duke, and I reckon you’re glad I pushed you fellas to go see old man Corker’s horses that first day you rode into Larkspur. I know my horses and had no doubts this stallion of yourn was a superior one.”

“We’re beholden to you, Will. If we hadn’t bought the team when we did, someone else likely would have. Duke is proving his worth as a stud horse with the two foals we got this year, and we expect Molly and Mouse will drop fine foals early next summer.”

“You breeding the other two mares again?”

Boone looked at Coy, who was shifting his weight from foot to foot as he stood. “Ain’t decided that yet, but I’m inclined to wait till spring to cover Daisy.”

“Not completely sure, but I reckon the same for Buttercup. You should come by and see the foals,” Coy blurted out in a too-loud voice, his glance landing on Boone for just a second.

Will’s gaze shifted to Coy, shielding his eyes from the sun with his hand as he looked at him curiously. “Well now… I could do with some time away from here, that’s for sure, and there’s few things prettier than new foals. Might be I’ll drop by when I get an hour or two to spare… evening most likely.”

“Well, you’re always welcome, and we’d be glad to feed you a good meal. You ain’t even seen the new section of barn we added, and it’s been done for months now. Some good beam work we did—got the angles perfect. You been doing any fishing a’tall?” Coy asked, talking smooth and easy now, but Boone could still detect a quicker than usual rush to his words.

“Not a bit, sorry to say. Been too busy round here, but now you bring it to mind, them shallow rapids up from you are calling to me,” Will said with a wide grin. “Been a good spot for me in the past.”

Boone made a point of giving Coy a warning look as Will was talking, knowing for sure now what he was up to, and not caring for it.

An expression crossed the big man’s face that made Boone think Will had noticed. “So,” he said, dabbing at his neck with his kerchief while his gaze went from one to the other. “What do you fellas want done with these longer logs you brought?”

Boone jumped in quick. “Need them squared off enough for beams, same size as the others you’ve done, and one inch thick boards from the rest… don’t matter their width, but we want clean edges for butting against one another. We’ll have two more loads for you in the next couple of weeks if you can manage ‘em.”

“Busier than a horse’s tail in fly season with all the building to the south, but I’ll make time for you boys. I’m always needing the lumber—most of them new homesteaders are building stick houses—and y’all bring me top quality logs. A few of these fools been bringing me stuff that ain’t good enough to be firewood, and then complaining about the weakness of it. Some real greenhorns in that bunch, and I’m tired of learning them what should be common sense,” he said, his frustration clear even though he was smiling.

Boone had been right in how he’d described the man to Mitch. He surely was a good-looking fella, and that big smile was pleasing as they come. If the sheriff was made like them, he could certainly see the possibility he’d have been sweet on Will at one time. Could see good reason for Will to be sweet on someone like Mitch too.

The mill owner’s sudden walking to the back of the wagon indicated he had no more time to waste, so they worked in silence, other than occasional grunts, as they moved the logs one by one. They separated them into two separate piles, one of which Will took as payment for the milling. He could add up board feet in his head better than anyone, and they never doubted his accuracy, or his fairness.

It was demanding work in such heat, but with the help of Larry, Will’s small but wiry assistant, they muscled the logs where they needed to be—Boone counted six log piles besides theirs, proof of how busy Will was. The man was tireless and always made the lifting look easy on his part, with his powerful upper body, and legs that were as sturdy as the trees themselves.

He had a big old horse in the back field with his riding mare, one who could pull just about any weight needed, but Boone had yet to see him used because Will could move logs around by hisself easy as what two strong men could.

“Should have these done and stacked in the loading lane come Tuesday morning next. You taking back that small load of yours sitting out there, or picking it up with this one? Only twenty-six boards in that pile.”

“Won’t do to go back to the farm with an empty wagon. We’ll pick this one up Tuesday when we bring another load,” Boone said, keeping his eye on Coy, who’d been suspiciously closed-mouthed for the last while.

Will wiped some sweat from his brow before running fingers through his thick dark hair in an attempt to smooth it, the only sign he’d just done some heavy work. “Alan Bright told me there was a man—a tall, rangy fella—who came into the mercantile yesterday asking for you both. Said he was a pleasant type, but I was worried for you, knowing some about your brother, Coy. He weren’t no trouble, was he? Alan said he gave him directions to your farms.”

Coy suddenly looked like a spooked rabbit, and Boone was having trouble hisself with what to say. “Ah, no he weren’t no trouble. He’s a good man… a… a friend from down Red Bluff way. Figured he’d stop in for a visit on his way to Bear Lake.”

“Bear Lake? What’s a man traveling from Red Bluff to Bear Lake for? Is he looking to get some land out that way, because that’s awful rough country from all I’ve heard?”

“Ah… no, he didn’t say so. He’s heard there’s work around there.”

“What kind of work would that be?” Will asked, his curiosity typical of folks around Larkspur, but it made Boone mighty uncomfortable.

He swallowed. Lying didn’t come easy for him. “We never really got around to talking about it much, what with the foal having a hard time getting on the ground. Don’t think it matters to him. He’s just… he’s been looking for a change.”

“Is he a cowboy?”

“No… at least not at the moment… not sure if he ever was, but… well….”

“That gets to be a difficult life, but it can be hard to quit too,” Will said, staring hard at Boone, his interest not letting up at all. “Is he an upstanding fellow?”

“Sure is,” Coy answered before Boone had a chance to. “Ain’t none more upstanding than our friend.”

“That’s high praise for a man. What age would he be, this friend of yourn who might not be a cowboy?” he asked with a smile on his face, but Boone saw the same measuring look the sheriff was known for.

“About the same as yours,” he answered.

“Well… in that case, plenty to do around this place—too much for Larry and me most times. Could use another good man, so if he’s one like you say and he’s interested in moving lumber around, tell him to come see me. Long as he ain’t afraid of hard work, I’ll pay him well, and there’d be free lodging in the shed if he needs it.”

“We’ll tell him,” Coy said, his sly expression letting Boone know he was pleased at planting a seed. “He slept the whole night long, and we don’t know how long he’ll be staying, but we’ll let him know. Like Boone says, he’s a fine man and a real good friend. Wouldn’t mind at all if he chose to stay in Larkspur.”

Boone cleared his throat, wanting to cut Coy off from saying more. Will had seemed extra curious, and his next question could be what Mitch’s name was. “We should take the team round the other side and load up, Coy. The hottest part of the day ain’t far off, and I’d like to be back before the worst of it.”

“Yep, and I want to pick up a few things from Bright’s before we head back. See you Tuesday, Will, if not sooner. Don’t forget… you’re welcome to come visit and sit with us anytime, whether you fish or not. Be proud to show you the barn and the new stock.” He smirked at Boone as he hopped into the seat of the wagon. “I’ll meet you at the stack.” Clucking, he moved Duke and Molly out towards the back fields so he could turn around and come up alongside their milled lumber.

“Something up with that boy? He’s got a twinkle in his eye today for sure... a mite jumpy too,” Will said, scratching his head as he watched him and the team move away.

“Is he? Never can tell with Coy,” Boone muttered. “Try to stay out of this heat, Will.”

“Ain’t no escaping it, but I’ll do my best. You might see me out your way soon,” the big man added, and again Boone saw the same measuring look as he glanced his way.

“Look forward to the visit. Best go get that wagon loaded up.”

 

Coy was wearing a satisfied expression when Boone met him at the pile of new-sawn wood, the odor of pine made stronger by the heat of the sun. “Quality wood, ain’t it?”

“Always is,” Boone responded. “Won’t take us long to load such a small one.”

“You fretting, Boone?”

“Possible I am.” Boone tipped his hat back and wiped some sweat with his sleeve. “You’re bound and determined to interfere, that’s for certain.”

Coy stopped moving and stared at Boone from across the stacked lumber. His expression had changed. “Would you have called it interfering when the sheriff gave you a talking to, and then rode up to see me at the old river camp like he did?”

Boone was caught by surprise at the question, and the softness of Coy’s voice. “Suppose not. I see what you’re getting at, but Mitch did ask us not to bring him up to Will.”

“No sir, he asked us not to mention his name when we saw him, and we didn’t.”

Boone sighed in exasperation. “But I had to do some lying to the man, and that weren’t something I agreed to—think Will knew I wasn’t being forthright for all those questions he asked.”

“You’re fretting for nothing, Boone. He wasn’t any more curious than usual.”

“Maybe so, but tarnation, Coy, you invited him over for a visit while Mitch is there!”

“Yes, I did, and you might want me to feel bad for it, but I don’t. At least if they come face to face on our land we can make sure neither man gets hurt. And you didn’t lie to no one, and I would never ask you to. Mitch was looking for work in Bear Lake, and you didn’t need tell him any more than that.”

Boone groaned at Coy’s logic. “Why can’t we just let the sheriff be like we said we would?”

“Sorry for it, Boone, I am. I’ve tried, but it’s damn near impossible to mind my own business where the sheriff is concerned. I know it bothers you terrible—can see it in your face—but these could be his very last days, and I won’t sit by and do nothing, so please don’t expect me to. I did nothing to stop my brother from hurting folks. I knew what kind of man he was, and if I’d told Wes and Lee the things he said about them— about them not deserving to live cause of who they were, then—”

“That ain’t on you, Coy, just like you said Dan isn’t on me.”

“And I was right about that, but some of what my brother did is on me—we both know I should have stood up to him, or sent him on his way instead of convincing him to stick with us on the river—so if I can get Mitch to see the doc or repair a friendship or whatever it might have been, then I’m going to do it. All I’m asking is, will you trust me?”

“Course I will, if you promise to stop carrying around what Will Diamond did on your shoulders.”

Coy sighed. “Normally I don’t. It’s just this thing with Mitch feels like a chance to do something good. Something to tip the scales, you know?”

Boone studied the man as they locked eyes. He sighed. “I always trust you, even when it seems I don’t, but you have to be prepared that Will and Mitch meeting might not go well—that’s what you see on my face—worry for you.”

“I know you worry for me, but I’ve prayed on it, and I got this powerful feeling it needs to be done. Things tend to work out most times when I listen to the Lord’s guidance, and I need you to have faith.”

“All right then. Fact is you’re usually right about folks anyway—I do have faith in that—so enough yammering. Let’s get these planks loaded and back to the farm.”

The twinkle was back. “You ain’t angered at me no more?”

“Course not. Never could be no matter what you do,” he answered, and he meant it. Being angered at someone as good-hearted as Coy was dang near impossible.

Coy winked at him before he grinned, showing most of his strong, white teeth. “Just a quick stop at Bright’s and we can head home.”

Boone could feel his stomach drop. “You got something else planned in that pretty head of yourn, don’t you?”

“Maybe so.”

“Coy—”

“You said you’d trust me, Boone. Now let’s do as you say and stop yammering so we can get this done.”

 

Boone accompanied Coy into the mercantile, remembering he needed some nails. Coy had gone in another direction and it wasn’t long before he heard him talking to Alan Bright.

“Howdy, Coy. What can I get you today?”

“I’ll take another case of them jars, Alan, and a couple boxes of matches. I’m thinking that’s all for now.”

“See you’re carrying a load of lumber out there. What are y’all building next?”

“Well… Boone and I decided to keep sharing the barn, so we plan to add onto it so it’ll be big enough for his stock and mine–we each got a new foal from our stud horse. Don’t know when we’ll get to it, though. Soon be time to harvest the apples.”

“Them’s good apples. Sooner I get some the better. Folks who bought ‘em last year are already asking when the new crop is coming in. I’ll take all the bushels I can get—Mrs. Kilroy says they make the best applesauce she’s ever done, and you know how she talks. Looks like good planks out there. Say, did that fellow asking for you come calling? A big fellow, kind of lean with light hair, and eyes that don’t miss nothing?”

“Oh, Mitch? Yeah, he found the place all right, and you’re right about them eyes. Thanks for steering him out our way. He’s a good friend from Red Bluff.”

“I figured so. He seemed right pleasant for a stranger, and he knew your horses’ names—mentioned Daisy, Mouse, and your mule Blue—otherwise I wouldn’t have told him where he could find you boys.”

“You did right by telling him. Yep, Mitch is a damn good man. Alan? You know what’s going on in this town better than anyone… any idea if the sheriff is looking for a deputy?”

“Deputy? Can’t say for sure, but the town’s growing every day, and he only has the one. Want me to ask him for you? He’ll be in later this afternoon.”

“No… no need for that. I was just prospecting for some information—don’t even know if my friend’s interested in such anymore. Likely see you in a few days.”

“Yep, you bet. Oh, and I got some new boots coming in next week if you’re needing any. Brought them in before and they’re good made.”

“I’ll have a look at them when they get here.” Coy turned away from the counter as Boone walked up. He gave him a smug smile. “Good thing you remembered nails, cause I plumb forgot.”

“Alan, can you put these on my account?” Boone asked while raising his eyebrows at Coy.

“Surely,” Alan Bright said as he weighed the small sack on the big scale behind him, fiddling with the metal weights.

“Just put ‘em on mine, Alan,” Coy said. “I’ll probably use more of them than he does. Ready, Boone?”

“Guess so.” He picked up the nails and followed Coy out of the store, trying not to show how agitated he was. Alan was a nice man but he had a big mouth, and Coy was surely counting on that.

“Sure is getting hot out.” Coy climbed up into the wagon and picked up the reins, letting loose the wagon brake as he watched Boone spring up onto the seat beside him.

“If Alan knows Mitch’s name then likely Will won’t be long in hearing it.”

“Yep. I expect he will.”

“And you pretty much told Alan he was a lawman.”

“Yep. A fellow could assume that, I reckon.”

He sighed at the man’s stubborn expression. “Sure hope you know what you’re doing.”

“So do I, Boone, but I got to try. Are we going to go through this again?”

“No, but I’ve got to look Mitch in the face, Coy, and I don’t like going behind his back.”

“I know, and I’m sorry for that, but who knows when Mitch will decide to head out on his own? It scares me. That man has a lot of pride, and my gut tells me Will might could convince him to stick around.”

“I know you think that, but I ain’t so sure.” He blew out a long breath. “I meant it when I said I had faith in you, but I don’t want you to be disappointed.”

“I know you don’t, but I’m a growed man and I can handle whatever happens. The sheriff gave me a kick in the pants when I needed it, and I’m hoping to return the favor.”

“Can’t argue we owe the man, and I think he finally sees it the way we do. If you’d have waited a day or two more, I’d have died alongside that river.”

“And I never would have forgiven myself.”

“Wouldn’t have been your fault if I had.”

Coy clucked the team to move forward. “I was stewing in my pride, back when you asked me to come with you to Larkspur… and I was still stewing when Mitch showed up, so you’re right… we owe him for calling me on my stubbornness. I intend to do the same.”

Boone sighed. “I love you, you know.”

“Course I know that. And you trust me too,” he said with a sudden flash of that devilish grin Boone loved just about more than anything.

“Yep, I do, not to say you don’t drive me loco sometimes. I ain’t afraid of the sheriff like I used to be, but best know we could be playing with a rattlesnake.”

“Don’t mind a bit if he gets angered with me. He’s got no one else on this earth, so I got to do what I can… because I ain’t got no say in the matter since I prayed on it.”

Boone knew Coy better than anybody, and was done trying to warn him off. He accepted now the man had been right all along, and he admired and understood his faith. It was right to do what they could for a man who was dying. “I can see you don’t, and I’ll help if I can. Expect the Lord’s got a special place in his heart for you.”

Coy turned to look at him, and his eyes held a softness Boone was pretty sure only he had ever seen. “Sweet Talker. I knew you’d see it right before long.”

Boone snorted in amusement. “Got no choice anyway, do I?” he asked as he gripped the back of Coy’s neck and shook it gently. It was all the contact he dared on the main street of Larkspur.

Coy leaned back into his hand and then chuckled in a tender and intimate way. There was such feeling in that sound, and in the words that followed. “Guess you don’t at that. I love you too, Boone Dixon, and if the Lord don’t have a special place in his heart for you, then he’s a damn fool.”

 

*

Thanks for reading this continuation Of Boone and Coy's love story. All mistakes are mine alone. I'm sure you're all tired of me asking, but recommendations and story likes on the front story page go a long way towards bringing new readers to this story. Hope you enjoyed this double chapter. Cheers!

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17 minutes ago, drsawzall said:

Coy and Boone, what's not to love..two of the most genuine folks to inhabit these pages. 

The following reminds me so much of them...

If—

Rudyard Kipling - 1865-1936

If you can keep your head when all about you

   Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
   But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
   Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
   And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
   If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
   And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
   Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
   And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
   And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
   And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
   To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
   Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
   Or walk with kings—nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
   If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run—
   Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

This poem is in the public domain.

Wow... I'm speechless, buddy. I've read a lot of poetry, but I don't remember reading this one. It's my new favorite. :worship:  I will say I see why it reminds you of these two, and your words of description for these two characters of mine is humbling. It's much more than I could have wished for, so thank you. :hug: 

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Coy may be an eternal optimist but sometimes those type of people do more damage to others by thinking they are doing the right thing without any real idea of the damage they do to others...  Not saying that Coy's actions will prove to be damaging, but he is blindly pushing events even though he has been asked not to.  

Boone won't truly put his foot down to stop Coy, but I don't hold him as accountable, his feeling for Coy just won't allow him to really do anything to take the shine of Coy's joy and happiness.

Can't wait to see what happens next.  

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1 hour ago, drsawzall said:

Coy and Boone, what's not to love..two of the most genuine folks to inhabit these pages. 

The following reminds me so much of them...

If—

Rudyard Kipling - 1865-1936

If you can keep your head when all about you

   Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
   But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
   Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
   And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;
   If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
   And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
   Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
   And stoop and build ’em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
   And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
   And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
   To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
   Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
   Or walk with kings—nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
   If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run—
   Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

This poem is in the public domain.

👏 

This was beautiful.  Thank you for sharing.

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2 hours ago, centexhairysub said:

Coy may be an eternal optimist but sometimes those type of people do more damage to others by thinking they are doing the right thing without any real idea of the damage they do to others...  Not saying that Coy's actions will prove to be damaging, but he is blindly pushing events even though he has been asked not to.  

Boone won't truly put his foot down to stop Coy, but I don't hold him as accountable, his feeling for Coy just won't allow him to really do anything to take the shine of Coy's joy and happiness.

Can't wait to see what happens next.  

Yeah, I can agree with that, centex. Some people do stick their noses where they don't belong, and it's fair to think Coy might be one of those. I don't think he's acting blindly, though. I know people who have incredible trust in themselves, and they're seldom wrong. Mitch is family to Coy... a dying man who has no one else in his life, and for all Coy has badgered him, I think it's clear that Mitch really doesn't mind. He's lost all the other people who've cared about him, so Coy pushing him probably feels good on some level.

You're right about Boone. He will always support Coy in the end... but he'll challenge him, and make him think. Whether this is a mistake or not, the fact is, Mitch can just walk away... continue on to Bear Lake if he chooses. 

We'll find out soon enough. :) Thanks, buddy. I appreciate hearing your voice in the conversation. To me there is nothing better than the engagement of the readers. Cheers... Gary.... :hug: 

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