Tumbleweed Dreams: Part 1
Arriving In The West
Daisy Mason had always pictured the west as being a romantic place filled with the love, hope and dreams of those who had stay or passed through it in their lifetime. Never did she imagine it would be full of horses and men twice her size who greatly favored, in smell, the beast they rode upon. Hitching up her dress she side stepped a few of the markings left by such creatures to mark the path they had traveled. She had traveled far to reach this dry and dusty place and she was determined to find at least one aspect of what she had for so long dreamed of in her many hours at finishing school. "Excuse me!" She shot a glare at the ghastly man who had brushed against her dress in an attempt to squeeze past her and several others walking away from the hissing train that had brought them down the tracks from civilization. His grunt of a reply convinced her that he was indeed one of those rougher yet slower men you often read about in the adventure novels. The ones who could not be trusted with anything other than keeping a cup of ale safe. Holding her coin purse closer to her chest she pushed through the crowd and breathed a sigh of relief when she popped out on the other side unharmed.
"Beau! Slow down!"
The sound of a child's laughter mixed with the concern in the booming voice forced Daisy to turn around in eager inspection of the situation. No sooner had she turned did she spot a small form slipping through the bodies still crowded on the wooden platform. She tried to catch sight of the young boy's parent, successfully stepping into the path of the oncoming child. He slammed into her shins with such force that she let out a small, yet soundless gasp, and staggered back two steps before landing on her backside in the middle of the dusty street. Thankfully it was a soft landing. The ground was not nearly as hard as she had suspected in would be.
"I'm very sorry Miss."
A set of strong hands lifted her from the ground and set back on her feet. She quickly brushed them off, not wanting to be touched by an individual she did not properly know. Even if it was a helping hand, it was still highly improper. Tipping her head back she looked up towards the face of the one who had lifted her from her prior position. Dark blue eyes shaded by a dark brimmed hat, set in a handsomely rugged face stared back at her. She gasped again and involuntarily took another step back. The strangers hand shot forward, catching her elbow.
"Careful there ma'am."
Finding her voice she squared her shoulders and gave a solid and firm nod. "Thank you for your assistance. If you will excuse me I will be on my way."
He stepped directly out of the way, leaving her plenty of room to make her departure. With another nod in his direction she smiled a slight smile of gratitude and walked away.
Bradley Miller watched as the young lady walked away, her head held high, shoulders squared in dignity, the back of her pretty little dress covered in the manure she had so gracefully landed in. He tried to control the laugh that was building up in his lungs. He wasn't quite sure if she knew or if she was being proper and pretending not to notice. Several heads turned as walked past, the aroma of the freshly made product scrunching up their noses. He should have told her he supposed, but she had a certain look that said she would not at all appreciate someone pointing out the fact that she was covered in something from another's rear. Two bags on the ground caught his eye and he sighed out of habit. Scooping them up he followed after her through the crowd.
"Do you mean to tell me there are no trains leaving this.. this.." Daisy searched for a word that would best describe the small, dirty, dusty little town with all of it's foul smells, but nothing came to mind. Stomping her foot she glared the little man behind the counter. He was just above her height, squeaky clean looking, a hat perched atop his slicked back hair, glasses resting on his extra nose. It wasn't his fault she had ended up in the wrong part of the west. In all honesty, he looked just as out of place as she did. But she had to let her anger out on someone, and he was the nearest person. "Is there or is there not another train coming? And what is that awful smell that seems to constantly hang in the air?! "
"The next train don't past through till next week sometime. That is, if they have a stop to make. Could be they keep right on going until the week after."
Daisy turned around only to be greeted by the sight of the man who had helped her to her feet a few moments before. He nodded at the ticket master, while setting down two pieces of luggage she recognized as her own. Well at least they have a porter!
"And I hate to tell you this ma'am, but that smell just so happens to be you."
A very rude porter at that! "How dare you! Who do you think you are?", she moved to step closer, bent on making her words and thoughts as clear as possible, " I am a lady and I will not--", her foot slipped from beneath her on the unsteady ground and she found herself toppling forward. A soundless scream caught in her throat as a pair of hands stopped her mid-air, his nose inches from a large pile of what she now knew as the source of the smell.
After being set back on her feet, for the second time in less than ten minutes, Daisy was feeling less then pleased at her current situation. However; she managed to put on a smile, one she would have much rather been using on a young handsome frontiers man, and turned back the gruff porter. "Thank you sir. Your help had been most appreciated." Turning her attention to the station master she inquired after sleep arrangements, "If you would be so kind as to point me to the nearest hotel, I would be most grateful."
"Don't have one."
No hotel? Daisy steadied her fading patience. "What about a boarding house?"
He shook his head, "Nope. Ain't got one of those either on account of the fire."
She stomped her foot again. This was not how things happened in stories.
Rolling his eyes Bradley turned on the heel of his worn cowboy boots and walked away. City slickers always wanted what they couldn't have. He had seen many of them come and go once they found out what the real world was like.
-To Be Continued-
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