Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Prettiest Gun in the West

The Prettiest Gun in the West
(a very short novel by Latigo Flint)

Chapter One - Tassels and Wildflowers

He had tassels on his saddlebags and wildflowers in his hatband. Those were the first two things the townspeople noticed about the man who rode out of the desert that day.

He had pert, well-formed breasts and actually wasn't a he at all. That was the next thing the townspeople noticed.

Chapter Two - Reyna

Reyna walked her horse to the hitching post but didn't tie him up. She simply kissed his mane as she slid from the saddle and told him to wait for her.

Horses can't talk but this one's eyes were definitely saying: "Snort, snort silly Reyna, I'd die at the claws of cougars for you." And then he looked around to see if any were near so that he might prove it to her.

It probably only took Reyna ten seconds to cross the street and ascend the steps of the saloon, but the world could have ended right after, and every man on the street that day would have considered it an even trade.

Her dress moved with her as she walked, like a squid in open water--tight and lithe and graceful, and diving so deep that your eyeballs explode. Her swept-back hair was so dark and alive that you'd beg on your knees for the chance just to sniff it, even if your buddies were watching and laughing. She is the reason the moon can't turn around. Her legs bordered on the unholy.

Inside the saloon, Reyna asked for a whiskey and received twelve marriage proposals instead. Insomuch as an unabashed erection and a lunge for the top of a skirt can be considered a marriage proposal.

But they didn't know who she was, and they didn't know the places she'd been, and they didn't know that groping at her would be the last thing they'd ever grope for again. (Unless of course you count blood-slick sawdust, squeezed then released by a final spasm of hands.)

Reyna reloaded in a shroud of gun smoke, her dark eyes belying the mirth her lips did not reveal. Around the room, blind fear caused a great many erections to diminish. Of course not those of the corpses, those remained as they were. Rigamortis makes angels giggle sometimes.

Reyna asked again for a whiskey and this time the barkeep broke his arm in his haste to pour it for her. She thanked him sweetly and drained it, and then the barkeep realized he'd probably love her forever and forgot all about the pain in his arm.

Chapter Three - A Horse for Every Cougar

The batwing doors eased open and a long, horse-ish snout poked through.
"Are you okay?" He asked Reyna with a whinny.
"I'm fine Horse." Reyna replied.
"I thought I heard cougars." He snorted.
"Nope, just men and all the impolite ones are dead."
Horse scanned the room suspiciously.
"There! In front of the tinkly tonk machine--surely that's a cougar!"
Reyna glanced in the direction her horse was staring.
"No Horse," she corrected. "That's just the piano player."
"Hmm." Horse mulled this over for a moment, flicking his ears and squinting his eyes. "Well perhaps I should trample him just to be sure."
Reyna's horse galloped across the room with murder in his eyes.

Reyna laughed, light and easy, like a porch awning on a breezy day. "No, that won't be necessary Horse." She gave the piano player a reassuring look. "He thinks you're a cougar, you see?"

The piano player didn't see, and promptly passed out on his keys.

"That's a bad horse." Reyna exclaimed. "Frightening innocent piano players." Reyna sat on the bench beside the musician and started gently patting his face and brushing the matted hair from his eyes. And then eighteen men pretended to pass out in the hope of similar treatment.

And in all the commotion, no one noticed that in a dark corner of the saloon, shotguns were slowly being leveled at Reyna.

Chapter Four - Scattershot Homicide

Horse sensed something was wrong--Reyna was in danger. He took two steps in front of her just as the roar of scattershot homicide split the saloon in two.

Horse died furious, snorting and cursing those who would do Reyna harm with his very last, snorty breath. Reyna drew her guns with wraith-like speed and absolutely ruined the men who tried to ambush her.


Reyna walked out of town alone, saving her tears for the desert. Far away in a sun-scorched ‘scape, in the shadow of limestone spires, she wept like a child for a horse named Horse and wondered if she'd ever know friendship again. Reyna stared off at the horizon line as a hawk screamed in the distance and stuff. The wind blew her hair across her pretty face and then all things ended like sad movies end.

The End


At 2:20 AM, Blogger Sam, Problem-Child-Bride said...

You have the soul of a poet, Mr. Flint.

At 9:06 AM, Anonymous Nicolas Papaconstantinou said...

"She is the reason the moon can't turn around."

Absolutely beautiful line...

Wonderful stuff, Latigo.

At 2:11 PM, Blogger Rasmus said...

Oh Latigo, you've done it again.

Now tell me the truth, and I know you will, you always do, is Reyna inspired by the Starbucks Barista?

At 6:21 AM, Blogger Noir Muse said...

Reyna sounds like the kind of person who everyone refers to as a “Force Of Nature” or something. Even I’m smitten with her – and I don’t usually fall in love with the fictional feminine types. Good work, Mr. Flint.

At 6:31 AM, Anonymous ATD said...

Magnificent job. Indeed, to paraphrase Sam the problem-child bride, you have the soul of a poet and the heart of a tumbleweed, doomed to tumble forever on the lonely plains. Why, Good Merciful God, I could feel the flutters of desire well up in my heart the moment I imagined her flutterskirt form and smiling, but cold-eyed, gunslingeress visage in my mind, and a part of me died inside when Horse died, defending his mistress from man-cougars. A part of me wishing that I could tolerate constant 100 degree heat and bone-dry humidity.

But it makes one wonder. Latigo, you are wise in the lore of gunslingers. The southwestern desert is their habitat, for so many of them. But what of frontiers more northern than that of the great Mohave? But what of the foggy, windswept, rocky coasts? The silent, mist-shrouded pine-forests and verdant, unspoilt glens of redwood trees? Would you know if hard, squinty-eyed gunslinger men and beautiful, deadly gunslinger women ever stalked the hills and forests and cold, grey shores of the Pacific Northwest?


At 2:26 PM, Blogger Cindy-Lou said...

More women should respond to unwanted groping in that way. It would probably cut down on the amount of unwanted groping. Although, let's be honest here. I may say no, but I really mean yes.

At 2:39 PM, Blogger Teaspoon said...

Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo! Not a horse named Horse, why god why? all for a no good woman who never returned his feelings? Nooooooooooooooooo!

At 7:33 PM, Blogger Lightning Bug's Butt said...

Did one of those erections belong to the horse? I'm just asking because I think it's funny when that happens.

At 1:12 AM, Blogger Latigo Flint said...

Thank you Sam.
("And the body of a Norse God." Those are the words I was hoping would follow. But they didn't and now I'm off to do more push-ups.)

Thanks very much Nicolas. I try. Too hard some may say. But they get punched in the nose if they say it where I can hear.

Rasmus, have I ever written a single word that wasn't somehow inspired by the cruel, cute Starbucks barista and the delirious hold she has on my heart?

The worst part Noir is that there really is a Reyna, and she is as I've described her and she is a Force of Nature and it absolutely ruined me when she moved away.

I dare say, ATD, you write almost too well. I've had to go underground to avoid the adoring mobs. I suspect you've had to as well.
I can offer you this--it practically screams foggy, windswept, rocky coasts, silent, mist-shrouded pine-forests and verdant, unspoilt glens of redwood trees.
The Gentle Trapper.

Do I care that you've just set the Woman's Cause back about a hundred years Cindy-Lou? No, of course not, I'm a man you see.

A horse named Horse died furious TSP. Never forget that line.

You would bring that up LBB.
(Hell yeah, of course one of them was... it was frickin' hilarious!)

At 2:22 PM, Blogger Rob said...

You know how to bring a tear to the eys, Mr Flint. And another great girl/horse pairing achieves immortality, like Velvet Brown and Pie, or Brunnhilde and Grane.

And like Brunnhilde and her Valkyrie sisters, clapping eyes on Reyna would be a photo-finish betyween premature ejaculation and heart failure from sheer terror. Yes, Latigo, you've written the first Valkyrie of the Western Ranges. I can hear the Wagnerian soundtrack now, though with the wind whipping across the desert it sounds like Ennio Morricone.

At 9:19 AM, Blogger Helga von porno said...

very good. reyna my heroine. Horse pretty good too

At 10:40 PM, Blogger tangled said...

Oh, oh, oh. "diving so deep that your eyeballs explode"
Imagine looking like that, oh, oh.

Lovely. Thank you for this very much.


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