By Maz McCoy
Hannibal Heyes stepped into the bath tub and eased his aching muscles into the deep, steaming water. He gave a contented sigh as he sat down and leaned back, wiggling his toes in the water.
“Oh, that feels so good.” He closed his eyes in appreciation of the warmth.
“I could stay here all day,” Kid Curry remarked from where he sat in another bath tub across the room. His hair was wet, his muscles relaxed, his fingers pruny. Martin’s Bath House had been a very welcome sight to the two ex-outlaws, after several long, dusty days on the trail.
A sudden volley of gunshots outside in the street, had both men reaching for the guns that lay in their holsters beside the tubs. Kid shot a glance at his friend. What should they do?
“It can’t be a posse,” Kid stated, his hand gripping the Colt. “Can it?”
“Why would they be shooting now?” Water dripped from Heyes’ arm as he held the Schofield at the ready.
“D’you think we should…?”
“No! No, Kid I don’t.” Heyes put down his gun. “I doubt it has anything to do with us. No, Kid we can just relax here and enjoy the water.”
Kid looked across at the window, hoping Heyes was right.
“Besides, we don’t have any towels,” Heyes reminded his friend. “So unless you were thinking of running outside in nothing but the suit God gave you…”
“No, I wasn’t thinking that,” Kid agreed. Then he lowered his voice and whispered. “But I think she…” He gave a slight nod of his head skywards.
“Who? The author lady? Maz?”
“You think she’d want you to check on the gunfire?”
“Yes and…you know…”
“But she likes you Kid. Why would she want us to go running outside in our…?” Realisation hit Hannibal Heyes. “Oh.”
“She has friends who like you, apparently. They’d sure be pleased if she let you flash your dimples.”
“Shhhh! Keep your voice down! No need to give her any ideas.”
“Heyes, you know as well as I do, that Maz has a lot of ideas of her own, she don’t need our help.”
“Yeah, you do seem to get shot up a lot. Maybe she’ll let us enjoy a warm bath for a change.”
There was the sound of frantic typing.
“So anyway, Kid,” Heyes said, casually. “It sure is nice to enjoy a warm bath, don’t you think and not have to leave it in a hurry?” He looked up at the author as she typed. Heyes gave her a dimpled smile. “Afternoon, Mizz Maz.”
The author smiled back.
“Howdy ma’am.” Kid gave her one of his smiles.
The author beamed, trying not to swoon at the keyboard.
“Don’t worry fellas,” she said. “I’ll have some towels delivered by Old Man Martin in a few minutes, but I can’t say I wasn’t tempted there for a while.”