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Ed and Doc: a short-short Western story

Updated on November 17, 2014

Ed and Doc

Ed Stock and Doc Jones both, I reckon, drifted into town shortly after the Civil War. Ed was still pretty much wearing his blue Union uniform clothes and did until they wore out and he got western boots and work clothes. He must have saved up some money, because he bought a half interest in the local saloon where he still runs the place. Ed gives the impression of a big man but actually he isn’t even six foot tall and maybe weighs 160 lbs. But when he looks at you he seems like to penetrate your soul.

“ It seems that Ed was in the war,” the Easterner asked. “”Did he get that gash on his neck in the war?”

So, You want to know about that scar on his neck? He’s never said but folks figure it was something in the war. Yeah, you’d think trouble was routine for him, but actually he tries to avoid it. I don’t guess he knows that the way he looks and acts stops trouble in before it starts

“And Doc Jones? Was he in the war too? Is he really a doctor? ”

Now Doc Jones is another story. No, I don’t think he went to medical school but I think he probably helped the wounded during the war. He reads a lot that man does. Anything he can get his hands on, especially about science and medicine. Some say he lived with the Indians and had an Indian wife that died, so his son is part Indian. Don’t really know and nobody asks. I suspect he learned some Indian medicine too.


“How about the war?”

I don’t know if Ed and doc knew each other in the war, but it could be. Doc always rode in a buggy, usually with his young son. About a year ago Doc and Jamie, that’s his boy, drove the buggy into town to get supplies.

Folks out East think that everyone packs a gun out here but that ain’t so Doc never carried one and didn’t seem to like of them much.

When the got to the edge of town a bunch of cowboys rode up firing pistols scarin’ his horses. Doc figured that they was boozed up, or maybe got hold of some opium. Maybe they thought they could get more of it from him.

A stray bullet hit the buggy just below the seat and the horses bolted and lunged forward in a scared gallop Doc was thrown backwards. Luckily Jamie knew enough to grab the reins but could barely hold on. The cowboys headed off the horses but started to circle around. They got to the edge of town and the cowboys were crowding the buggy and getting louder. Doc knew they were dangerous. Although he was a quite, peaceful man he knew a thing or two. Protecting Jamie came first.

“Jamie, listen now and do as I say. When I say’ go’ you make a run for Ed’s bar as fast as you can and stay there until I come to get you.”

I’ll tell you, Jamie didn’t like it, but he knew he better do as his Pa says. Ok. Pa, I sure will.’

The Cowboys got up close and Doc eyed the leader.  He reached for that buggy whip and said,” go.”

Jamie took off running and the cowboys slowed down by the liguer or drugs didn’t seem to notice until Doc took the whip and lashed out at the wrist of the leaders gun hand. The pistol shot into the ground upsetting the horses again. They reared up and took off—again.

The cowboys gave chase but a shotgun blast hitting the ground in front of them startled them to a stop.

Ed came striding across the square and the sight of him and his scattergun sobered them up a little.

“You Ok, Doc?”

“Sure, I don’t know about my horses though.”

“What happened to the Cowboys?”

The cowboys were real apologetic. Doc told them to go sleep it off and lay off the booze and drugs. Doc didn’t hold grudges but they knew it might not be good to cross him again.

Jamie didn’t stay in the bar as he was to told but had seen what was going on. Doc and Ed became friends after that.

Much later.

The writer left and I sort of forgot about him, but think both Doc and Ed were surprised to run across a dime novel portraying them as the an outlaw fighting team “Ed the Shotgun avenger and Doc the bull whip wielding partner.”

© 2010 Don A. Hoglund


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    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Glad you liked it Cam. Thanks for commenting.

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 

      6 years ago from Traverse City, MI

      Thanks for posting this one again, Don. I haven't read nearly enough of your stories. Very enjoyable read this afternoon.

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      6 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Hi Audrey. I'm following your advice and updating some old stories. I have several which I came to designate as the "Carbons Creek Stories." I appreciate your comments.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 

      6 years ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      This story captivated me and I'm not much when it comes to western themes. Your descriptive lines gave me a true sense of Ed and Doc. Keep writing this western theme and I'll keep reading! Audrey

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Glad you liked it. The word vogue is similar to popular or can be used that way. In vogue is sort of like the word "trendy" now.Thanks for commenting.

    • W.R. Shinn profile image

      W.R. Shinn 

      10 years ago

      Thank you for the entertainment dahoglund. "Vogue" Does that mean, like, popular? I really like short stories. Thanks again. Sincerely,


    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      I just thought it was amusing. My brother is a bit hard to explain. He was the kind of person that you ask the time and he tells you how to build a clock. I understand his own kids wouldn't let him help with their homework.


      Thanks for commenting.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      10 years ago from Houston, Texas

      Sounds like that sociologist could have been a bit more tactful! Certainly not your best "review." Obviously your brother liked it.

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Every once in awhile I get an impulse and follow it. I don't know where it will lead.

      My first attempt at crative writng was when I was in high school and I sort of scratched together a western short story. I was just wondering if I could keep a plot together. I sent it to my older brother in California who tends to go overboard. Instead of just giving me his opinion he passed it around to all his friends to review.

      Several years later I went to California to be best man at his wedding. At the wedding breakfast I introduced my self to the person next to me at the wedding breakfast who was a sociologist..He said" oh. your the guy that wrote that dumb western story."

      I wish I still had that story so I could review it now.

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 

      10 years ago from Houston, Texas

      You seem to be honing your skills by writing these short western stories. Good job!

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      I appreciate your comment and your opinion.

    • WillStarr profile image


      10 years ago from Phoenix, Arizona

      Good stuff...again!

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      I'm glad you liked it and take your comment as a very high compliment. I wrote this one just to see if I could do a short enough story for hubpages without having to break it up into parts.

    • Wayne Brown profile image

      Wayne Brown 

      10 years ago from Texas

      You write a pretty good dime store novel yourself, DA...Thanks for sharing this one with us. WB

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Thank you for the comment.Also thanks for the rating.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 

      10 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Great action packed plot.. Flag up

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Thank you very much for the comment.I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • TheManWithNoPants profile image


      10 years ago from Tucson, Az.

      Thanks for a ride in your time machine. I enjoyed this dahoglund. Thumbs up, awesome, and Merry Christmas.


    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      Thank you for the compliment. I was hoping for some feedback on this story. I really have noone to test them on so I have to post it and hope it works out.

    • dahoglund profile imageAUTHOR

      Don A. Hoglund 

      10 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids


      I appreciate your comments. I wanted to see if I could write a very short story which seems to be in vogue.

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Marshall 

      10 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      You are a great writer! Love the western story - I live out in the "wild west" in Oregon, so this is simply awesome. :)

    • creativeone59 profile image

      Benny Faye Ashton Douglass 

      10 years ago from Gold Canyon, Arizona

      Thank you dahoglund for a great and awesome western story. Thank you for sharing it. Godspeed. creativeone59


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