All In A Day’s Work (by Visage)

Synopsis: It’s all a matter of perspective, but regardless — RUN!

Category:  Bonanza
Genre:  Western
Rating:  G
Word Count:  2,000


 

Author’s Note: *This is just a story that I wanted to write and so when I had the chance to do a creative writing for my English Class I jumped at it.  Haha, I made my class read a fanfic.  ^_^ I think I got my teacher interested in them…  Hmm…  Either way I’m kinda proud of this, so I thought I’d see what you people think!  ^_^ Enjoy!*

 

 

The ride out to Beaver Ridge had silent save for the soft pounding of horse hooves.  Even gentile natured Hoss was glaring at his other brothers.

Adam could still hear their father’s voice ringing, quite loudly in his ears.  “When one gets in trouble, you all get in trouble.  So all of you can go chop that down tree into fire wood and stack it neatly so it can dry for next winter.”

For a while, the brothers worked in silence as well, each muttering insults under their breath.  Finally, Adam couldn’t hold his tongue any longer.  “When will you ever learn to stay out of trouble, Joe?”  Adam growled as he brought the axe down on the log, splitting it with one stroke.

“Me!”  Joe sputtered.  “Oh no.  As I recall it was you who got us in trouble, oh Elder brother who never steps out of line…”

*****

It had been a long and hard winter in Nevada that year.  The snow had piled from early November and hadn’t melted until early May.  The three Cartwright boys walked into the ‘Bucket of Blood’ Saloon in Virginia City.  Though all of them could be mistaken as complete strangers due to their un-similar looks, each felt like a school child on a holiday.  They had not been allowed to leave the ranch not by their semi-overprotective father, Ben Cartwright, but by the Sierra Blizzards that arrived that year.

The piano was playing a fast paced tune, adding to the jovial atmosphere.  Everyone was excited to finally be out and spending their well earned money.  The youngest brother, Joe scanned the room eagerly, looking for someone to spend his Friday night off with.  Finally, he saw her.  The bright red dress, blonde hair, and he bet green eyes.  It had to be her.  Sable Morgenstern.

“I’ll see you later.”  Joe said, not even glancing at his other brothers.  He adjusted his hat high on his head, letting one brown curl fall down his forehead from under the brim and smoothed his ever-present green corduroy jacket before he put on one of his famously charming smiles.  He walked over to the bar where she was standing.  Moving up behind her, he covered her eyes with his hands.

“Joe Cartwright!”  Sable exclaimed immediately.  “Is that you?  Where have you been, my love?”  She turned around in his arms and put her hands on his chest.

“Around.”  Joe said with a coy quirk in his voice.  “Been cooped up back home at the Ponderosa since the snow started falling.  But everyday I thought about you.”

“Oh, Joe.  You flatter me.”  Sable smile and shifter her gaze to the ground.  “Come on, let’s go get a drink.”  The two made their way through the crowd and sat at a table in one of the far corners.  For a few moments they sat quietly, catching up on the past few months they had been apart.

“Well Joe.  Who’s your lady friend?”  A smooth voice came up from behind the two.  Joe narrowed his eyebrows in annoyance.  He didn’t want to deal with his oldest brother at the moment.

“Adam.”  Joe looked up.  “Fancy meeting you here.  Sable, you remember my brother, Adam.  This is Sable Morgenstern, Elder Brother.”  Joe clenched his teeth and hissed out the words as he addressed Adam, trying to give him a hint to go away.

“Ms. Morgenstern.”  Adam tipped his hat politely and bowed.

“Nice to see you again, Adam.”  Sable gave a smile and took a sip of her drink.

Joe blinked a few times, his mind racing with accusations.  “Again?  You’ve formally met?”

“Well, sort of Joe.  Just in passing.”  Adam supplied.

“Oh passing is right.”  Joe said standing from his chair.  He stood, almost pressing his face into Adam’s.  “Passing a few drinks!”  Joe started to go after his brother, but for once, held his quick temper in.  Even so, Adam went in first, aiming a quick fist into Joe’s jaw.  Within moments, the two brothers were sprawled on the floor, kicking and punching, rolling into a few tables and upsetting more than a few poker games.  Soon, the entire saloon was fighting with each other, breaking bottles, and causing a few hundred dollars worth of damage to the ‘Bucket of Blood.’

*****

“And now I can’t get Sable to look at me, let alone speak to me.”  Joe whined, upset at his older brother for ruining his night out.  “It’s all your fault.”

Adam raised his axe above his head again and split another log.  He tried to think rationally against his brother, knowing his logical approach usually outlasted his Joe’s emotional outbursts.

 

“Joe, you’re wrong.”  Adam said with a slight laugh, more to annoy his brother than out of necessity.  “If you’re going to try and lay the blame on someone other than yourself, at least get the facts straight.  This is how it really happened…”

*****

Each of the boys looked around the room, almost rejuvenated by the sight of civilization.  Adam saw his younger brother brighten, the famous glint in his eye that warned about trouble present.  He waived farewell to his brothers and walked towards the bar.

Adam chuckled to himself.  Of course, his brother’s mind would be on women.

“Seems younger brother has found himself a filly again.”  Hoss said, shaking his head.

“Seems so, brother.”  Adam lifted up his black hat and ran his fingers through his matching dark hair.  The eldest Cartwright sibling kept his eyes on Joe for a moment before turning to Hoss.  “Buy you a drink?”

Hoss broke into a gap-toothed smile.  “You bet!”  The two walked over to the bar and ordered a glass of beer each.  They stood quietly sipping their drinks and watching the people in the establishment for a moment.  Suddenly, Adam recognized the girl Joe was with.

“I’ll be right back.”  Adam set his drink down on the bar and walked over to the corner where Joe was sitting with his “filly.”

“Well Joe.  Who’s your lady friend?”  Adam asked.  He could see his brother’s shoulders tense.  He didn’t want him around.

“Adam.”  Joe looked up.  “Fancy meeting you here.  Sable, you remember my brother, Adam.  This is Sable Morgenstern, Elder Brother.”  Joe narrowed his eyes and tried to tell Adam to go away.

“Ms. Morgenstern.”  Adam tipped his hat politely and bowed.

“Nice to see you again, Adam.”  Sable smiled before taking a sip of her drink.

Joe gave a confused look.  “Again?  You’ve formally met?”

“Well, sort of Joe.  Just in passing.”  Adam supplied.

“Oh passing is right.”  Joe said standing from his chair.  He stood toe to toe with his older brother, his eyes gleaming in anger.  “Passing a few drinks.”

Adam saw his brother move forward as if to strike him.  He tried to grab his hands to keep them from flying, but he misjudged his own speed and his Joe in the jaw by accident.  Within moments, the two brothers were sprawled on the floor and an all out brawl started in the ‘Bucket of Blood.’

*****

“I’ve never been so embarrassed.”  Adam growled.  “Especially when Pa had to come to the sheriff’s office and get us all out.  I didn’t think we’d live to see this punishment he was so livid.   It was just and accident!”

Joe dropped the split log he had picked up to stack.  “That’s not true!  You were trying to steal Sable from me!”

“Oh, please Joe!”  Adam threw down his axe.  Both brothers looked as if they wanted the civil war on their own property.

“Dadburnit, enough!”  Hoss spoke for the first time since his “Yes, Pa” that morning after breakfast.  The peacemaker of the Cartwright boys was slow to anger, but had a wicked temper when angered.  Hoss put an un-split log on the chopping block for Adam.  “I’m sick of your arguing.  Now you both are stickin’ to your stories, and to you they seem true.  But you’re both wrong…!”

*****

Hoss had almost forgotten what a room full of people looked like.  After an entire six months being in the same room as his two brothers, he couldn’t believe he hadn’t gone plumb loco.  His younger brother immediately left in search of female companionship, and he didn’t blame him one bit.

“Seems younger brother has found himself a filly again.”  Hoss said with a smile.  He crossed his meaty arms across his broad chest, his blue eyes laughing at his brother’s antics.

“Seems so, brother.”  Adam chuckled.  “Buy you a drink?”

Hoss gave a grin.  “You bet!”  Both walked to the bar and ordered a beer, and stood watching the people in the saloon.  Suddenly, Adam looked harder at Joe and his friend.

“I’ll be right back.”  Hoss watched Adam set his drink down and walk over to the pair.  Hoss just shrugged to himself and continued sipping his drink.

For a few moments, the two seemed alright, except for the annoyance in Joe’s expression.  Suddenly Joe stood practically touching his nose to Adam’s.

Just then one of the more intoxicated men in the saloon walked by Joe, accidentally pushing him forward into Adam.  Before Hoss knew what was happening, both brothers were on the ground.  Within moments, the two brothers were in an all-out fight with the rest of the patrons, including Hoss trying to break up his brothers again, joined in the ruckus started in the Bucket of Blood.

*****

“Ya see?”  Hoss gave both of his brothers a hard glance.  “It wasn’t anyone’s fault.  Just an accident.”

Joe paused beside the large line of stacked wood, now six feet high and at least that long.  “Hoss is right, Adam,” he said, keeping his gaze to the ground.  “I’m sorry, brother.  I should have realized.”

“No, I’m sorry too.  I shouldn’t have jumped to conclusions either.  And I should know your temper by now.  I shouldn’t have walked over.”  Adam lifted his axe and split the last log of firewood.  “There,” he said with a smug tone.  “Just stack those last pieces, Joe.  Then we’ll be done with this chore.”

“Yeah, and it’s almost suppertime.”  Hoss put in, his stomach beginning to growl.

Joe gave a grin; his quick anger characteristically vanished just as fast as it had begun.  “Alright, brother.”  He picked up the log and placed it in a groove off already placed wood.  He dusted off his hands with a sigh and leaned against the stack.  “I guess that this just goes to show you the difference in point of view.”

“Sure does, brother.”  Hoss grinned, packing up their supplies.  He was eager to get home for supper.

Just then, Joe shifted a bit, still leaning against the stack.  He heard his brothers yell for him to move, and he jumped out of the way.  But not quickly enough to keep the entire tower from falling over with a noisy crash.

The three brothers stood silent for a moment, Hoss and Joe noticing the change of color in Adam’s face.

“Oops.”  Joe swallowed hard, thinking of how to excuse his accident.  “Well, Adam.  We could tell our version of this one too to see how it was an accident.  Ya see, I was leaning against this and…”

“Joseph…”  Adam’s voice was deadly quiet, too calm to be normal.  He clenched his hands into fists.

“I’d run if I was you, Little Joe.”  Hoss said, glancing back and forth between his brothers.

Joe took off at a run with Adam close behind.

*****End*****

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