| ALONG CAME A STRANGER|
( or another amnesia short story )
The Cowboy struggled to get to his feet. His head hurt something awful. It was pitch dark.
I’m Blind, I’m blind he thought. Panic set in. Then confusion. Then craziness. He started running around in circles until….”BANG”...he tripped and fell over a table. He heard breaking glass. Crawling around on his hands and knees he found the broken glass. “Ouch.” The cowboy cut his hand on the glass. The glass came from a wick lamp. The cowboy pulled out his Bic lighter and lit it. “Aha. I’m not blind after all” he exclaimed to no one.
The cowboy looked around the old rustic cabin. No T.V., radio, toaster or anything but a lot of silver lying on the floor from where he knocked over the table. “Whoa, wait”, “Who am I?”
“I don’t know.” he answered himself.
“Now what am I going to do with all this nasty, dirty silver.” talking to himself again.
“Wait a minute what is that in the corner.” “Is that a smelter?” “Yes it is.” “Oh, and over there, a butane stove.” “There. what is that contraption?” “A bullet reloader.” “I could make some bullets but I think I’ll just take these that’s already made.”
The cowboy picked up a dozen silver bullets from the floor. Six for each of his guns.
It was still night time but the cowboy left the cabin anyway. Out into the wild, western wilderness.
Out among the Mountains Lions, Rattlesnakes, Spiders and Cactus.
The cowboy wandered around in circles for hours (passing the cabin three times) before he saw some light coming from a campsite in a grove of trees. He was starving, thirsty and bleeding from his hand and many, many more cuts coming from running into the cacti spines. “If only I had brought the lamp with me and the three cantines that was hanging on a nail in the cabin.” He said to himself .When he walked into the headlights,no...I mean spotlight….No, what was it? When he walked into the firelight, a voice came from the trees.
Wat chew want? asked the voice.
“ Er, er, let me think a minute.” the cowboy said back at the voice.
“How about a gallon of water and a T-bone steak?”
“Chew alone stranger?”
“I think so.” said the cowboy.
A Indian with a bird tied to the top of his head came from the shadows.
“Hm, sit.” “I got no water.” “just cactus juice.” the Injun said.
“You can drink that stuff?” the cowboy asked.
“Sure”. said the Injun.
The cowboy thought about the cacti that he had been bumping into. Shoot I could have drink some cactus juice.
“But you be in luck white man.” I got a couple of T-bones cooking on fire over there.”As they sit around the campfire eating their steaks, the white man (that would be the cowboy) asked the redskin ( that would be the Injun) what name he went by.
He asked him like this: “What name do you go by?”
“ Me Toe-Toe.” “Some call me Many Toes.” “I born with six toes on each foot.”
“What you called white man? the redskin asked.
“I don’t know.” I don’t remember nothing but waking up in some dump of a cabin.”
“You need name.” “Make up name.” “I can’t keep calling you white man.” ToeToe said.
“How about Handsome Man?’asked the white man.
“No, you ugly.” said Many Toes. (well he said some call him that)
“You not only ugly, you bleeding like a stuck hog.” “You need to wash blood off before the werewolves and vampires smell it.” Injun said.
“Where?” whiteman said.
“In the water barrel, over by those two horses.” guy with bird on his head said.
“You got a barrel of water and gave me cactus juice to drink?” cowboy said.
“Not my horses.” “Not my water.” ToeToe told him.
“Whose are they?” white guy asked.
“I don’t know.” I smelled steaks cooking and I was hungry and when I came in from the trees, a couple of cowboys got scared and ran off.”
“I’ll take the Pinto.” cowboy said.
“No, Pinto Injun pony.” “I found, you take ugly white horse.” ugly indian said.
“You sho ugly with that bird on your head.” “ Must have been what scared those cowboys off.” ugly white man said.
“YOU uglier.” Injun shouted.
“ You uglier than ugly.” ugly white man said.
“You ugliest.”” If you would take that rag from your head you may not be so ugly.” Toes said.
“What rag?”cowboy asked.
Reaching up the cowboy felt something like a blindfold was indeed warped around his eyes.
“Why, I think its a mask.” no name cowboy said.
“Thats it, I call you Masked Man.” ToeToe suggested
“No, I don’t like that name.”
“I know, we Injuns call our kids by animal names or the first sound we hear or first words heard when babies are born.” “First word I say to you was wat chew want.” ”You name be Watchewwant.”ToeToe said.
“Hmmmmmm.. not bad, not bad at all.” “But I want to find my own name.” Not watchewwant said.
“How about the second thing I said.” ”You alone stranger?” ToeToe asked.
“Hmmmm… got a nice ring to it, but no.”
Then they heard Howls and Screams.
“What is it?” not the lone stranger asked.
“It’s them, it’s them”, ToeToe yelled.
“Who?” asked the man with no name.
“It’s the werewolves and the vampires.” Injun with many names yelled.
“Okey ToeToe get your bow and arrows.” “When they come you shoot the werewolves with your wooden arrows and I’ll shoot the vampires with my silver bullets.”
“Or is it the other way around?” “Just shoot everything.” Man with silver bullets and mask said. (OH yeah, and with an ugly white stallion.)
On and on they came. One after another. A whole bunch of them.
After the fighting was over and the smoke cleared.
ToeToe or Many Toes or Injun or redskin ….or ugly guy with bird on head and the man with no name walked over and looked down at the two cowboys that ToeToe had scared off from before.. A dozen bullet holes and as many arrows in them.
“ How about Ke-mo sah-bee?” ToeToe asked.
“No?’ the masked man said.
“My horse needs a name.” who was that masked man said.
“How about Sliver?” ToeToe asked.
“HI HO SLIVER?.” “Sounds about right, but no.”
“Go Yo.” Liver?”
We getting there said the Lone Stranger as they rode off into the sunrise.
Departing on his white stallion, Silver, the Lone Ranger would shout, "Hi-Yo, Silver! Away!". As they galloped off, someone would ask, "Who was that masked man, anyway?" Tonto usually referred to the Lone Ranger as "Ke-mo sah-bee", supposedly meaning either "trusty scout" or "trusted friend," These catchphrases, his trademark silver bullets, and the theme music from the William Tell Overture have become tropes of popular culture.