Friday, April 6, 2012
Now Playing: The Robin Hood of the Range
New to these parts? To start the story from the beginning, click
Episode Six concluded with:
As she walked past a corral in bad need of repair, the girl wondered if she would ever leave the ranch. At sixteen, Cissy had often thought of running away, but it seemed wrong to leave her ma alone with her pa, who was drinking more and becoming harder to live with by the day.
When Cissy opened the barn door she gasped in surprise and stepped back. She glanced upwards at the sky, where clouds seemed to be playing some strange game with the moon, then she slowly returned her eyes to the barn.
A magnificent pinto horse stood inside the barn. Though she had spent her lifetime around horses, Cissy was frightened by the animal. She approached it slowly. The pinto carried a beautiful saddle. Why, this horse looked just like Sherwood, the faithful steed of the Robin Hood of the Range.
Holding the lantern in her left hand, she carefully reached out and began to pat the horse. For a moment, Cissy experienced a moment of magic. Ever since she had turned thirteen, Cissy had done as her father ordered. She had prettied up and helped to sell horses to the men who came to the ranch. Many of the sales had been to men who were looking for a horse as a gift for a son or a daughter, a special birthday or Christmas present.
But there had never been anything special for Cissy. She had long ago even stopped thinking about it. Birthdays came with a quiet, “Happy Birthday, dear,” whispered by her mother. Christmas was a day when her father got even more drunk than usual.
And now…the girl continued to pat the horse, feeling more comfortable with the animal. This was a real horse, not a creature that somehow popped out of a story. But how…
Cissy heard shuffling sounds nearby. Without hesitation she hurried to the right side of the barn where two lines of hay bales were stacked. She lifted the lantern over the bales and was greeted by the barrel of a gun pointed directly at her.
Cissy gasped again, this time more out of wonderment than fear. She looked at the man who was lying on the floor. “You’re Ricky Cates!” Her voice was a stage whisper of excitement and adulation. “You’re the Robin Hood of the Range!”
Monday: Episode Eight of the Robin Hood of the Range