Warnings/Ratings: PG13, some bad words and implied nakedness
Disclaimer: I don't own them and I'm not making any money.
Buck and Vin watched from in front of the Sheriff's office as the eastern stage pulled in. Their idle interest turned to admiring attention when the last passenger stepped out. Both men came to their feet, Buck whistling softly under his breath.
"Now that is a fine example of the feminine form." Buck murmured appreciatively.
"Say that again." Vin concurred.
The woman was lovely, slim in all the right places and well padded in the others. Her hair was a raven black, lips the most enticing red. The only point against her, if you were unkind, was the paleness of her skin. But in truth it only added to her appeal. She stood on the boardwalk looking around casually.
Buck started across the street intent on meeting this walking dream. Vin sank back into his chair smiling. Buck would never change.
The brisk evening breeze had Chris pulling the collar of his coat a little closer. He hated to see the end of October. It signaled the start of winter and the holiday season. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Sarah had celebrated them all. This time of year she would have been telling ghost stories at night. Adam would spend hours planning what he wanted to be. Chris sighed at the memories, but it was a less bitter sigh than the year before. Thanks to the men who now made up his unusual family, the memories of Sarah and Adam were more comforting than painful. Pushing through the saloon doors he made his way toward Ezra's table. Ezra wasn't present just Vin and Josiah sharing a bottle.
Vin pushed out a chair with his foot as he filled a shot glass from the bottle on the table. "You're back early."
"Made good time." Chris downed the first shot to cut the dust, pouring another to sip. "How are things?"
"Quiet." Josiah rumbled. "Except for a few pre Halloween tricks."
"Tricks?" Chris shot a questioning look at Vin.
"Nothing serious just kids playing." The handsome tracker shrugged.
"If you're?" Chris let the rest of the sentence hang he trusted his men.
"Yeah nothing serious." Vin replied.
"Probably someone's idea of a Halloween prank." Josiah added.
"Probably." Chris agreed not really interested in such silliness. He'd been out at his shack for the last couple of days and just wanted to relax with friends. "So where is everyone else?"
"JD rode out to Nettie's, Nathan is at the clinic, Ezra's on patrol, Buck's with his new lady." Josiah scrubbed a hand over his face. "And I'm headed for bed, nite brothers."
Vin and Chris sat in companionable silence for a while just enjoying each other company.
"So Buck's got a new lady." Chris finally asked, arching a questioning eyebrow at Vin.
"Arrived on the stage, day you left." Vin grinned wickedly. "She's some looker. Has Buck all turned around."
Chris chuckled "Most pretty women do."
"This one's different."
"Not sure, but she is."
The conversation lapsed but Chris wondered what type of woman Buck was involved with now.
The next day went quickly for Chris as he dealt with the minor things that always seemed to crop up when he was gone. Of course this close to Halloween, the things were stranger than usual. The Chinese laundry was missing one of its big cast iron wash kettles. Someone had stolen a red velvet curtain from the local brothel. Yosemite was missing a bunch of leather straps from the blacksmith shop. Why did the townsfolk seem to save all their strange complaints for him? He was striding toward the jail, black duster flying when Mrs. Harrington stepped in his path. Coming to a quick stop to avoid running her over, Chris tipped his hat as he started to go around. Only to have the diminutive woman cut him off again. Stopping again, Chris growled a greeting.
"Good morning ma'am, can I help you?"
Mrs. Harrington often reminded Chris of a 'banty' hen, like the one's his mother had when he was a kid. She was about 5'3 and seemed to favor red calico for all her dresses.
"Yes you can young man, my Mirabelle is missing."
"How long has she been gone?" Chris was wracking his brain to remember who Mirabelle could possibly be.
"Since yesterday morning. You have to find her." Incredibly the older woman seemed to be on the verge of tears. "With Hiram gone, she's all I've got."
"We'll start looking right away. Can you describe Mirabelle?" Chris had the usual male reaction to the threat of tears; he panicked.
Mrs. Harrington's face smoothed out a bit. "She is mostly dark gray, but has a white patch on her chest and the top of her head. It almost looks like she is wearing a hat." Stepping forward a bit she patted Chris' arm almost timidly. "You're a good man, I don't care what the sewing circle says."
With that she hurried off leaving a confused gunslinger standing the street. Ezra had witnessed the entire meeting and walked over. Looking at the gambler Chris asked, "What just happened here?"
Nodding sympathetically, Ezra said, "A question I often ask myself. In this case I would say you've been Harrington'd."
"I've been what?" Chris growled.
"Harrington'd, it's JD's term. She's been after all of us to find her cat. You are just the latest." Ezra shrugged and started to walk away.
Chris called after him, "I want a meeting in the saloon in one hour. Find everyone and let them know." Continuing toward the jail he muttered under his breath. "Can't leave town for two days, entire place goes crazy."
Chris spent the next hour at the jail reading over JD's log. The young man had taken it into his head that they needed to keep proper records like a regular sheriff would. Since he seemed willing to be the one doing the recording, Chris said all right. Now Chris was looking through the log for some idea of what had happened while he was gone. It was fast becoming a frustrating process. JD wrote about anything he thought odd or interesting. There was an entire page on Buck's new girlfriend. Yet when it came to actual peacekeeping efforts of the Seven he was extremely brief. An entry from a week ago about an attempted bank robbery read;
Ten bandits tried to rob bank. No survivors. Buried next day.
Another from two days ago said;
Bar fight, three arrested. Buck needs to learn to duck better.
By the time Chris left for the saloon he was ready to have a long talk with JD about what a proper sheriff's office kept records of. Ezra had done better than he'd expected. Everyone except Buck was waiting when he arrived.
"What's up Chris?" JD was eager for some excitement.
"I've spent the entire morning listening to complaints." The dark gunslinger growled. "It looks like we have a petty thief problem."
"I don't think it's serious." Josiah looked unconcerned. "Just some kids playing a joke."
"Yeah," Nathan agreed, "Just kids, with Halloween, well you know how they are."
"Exactly." Ezra jumped in, "Halloween is a time for mischief and spirited high jinks. We don't have anything to worry about."
Chris looked at the men for a moment, wondering at their uncaring attitudes. All five men were grinning inanely nodding their agreement with Ezra. "You wouldn't worry about it?" He asked in a soft deadly tone.
"Nope." Vin leaned forward to rest his elbows on the table. "Just kids playing tricks, everything will show back up."
Chris was really confused now. Sitting back he studied the others, each of them seemed un-naturally quiet. They almost looked like statues sitting there. Even Ezra was still, his ever-present deck of cards missing.
Chris' musings were interrupted by Buck's arrival. Instantly the other men came to life, standing with big grins to welcome the woman on his arm. Chris looked around and felt like he'd just been hit in the head. Buck's new woman was a wizen crone. Her hair, what there was of it, a dirty gray, her dress, torn and faded. Hunched over a bit, she clutched Buck's arm with a claw of a hand. Chris' first thought, it was a joke, but looking at the other men he realized they weren't acting. Each man was falling over himself to fawn on the woman. Only Buck said nothing, standing still and quiet under the woman's hand he looked like a wax statue. Instinctively Chris knew there was more to this than met the eye. Wiping the confusion from his face he waited to see what would happen next. It wasn't a long wait, the woman ignored the other men, hobbling closer to him, still griping Buck.
"You must be Chris." Her voice reminded him of nails on a blackboard.
"Yes ma'am." Chris tipped his hat being careful to hide his revulsion.
"I'm Lilith." The hag pulled Buck a bit closer. "Buck has told me so much about you. I just couldn't wait to meet you. I hope you don't mind me coming with him?"
The others hurried to reassure her they were delighted by her presence. She sat down in the chair next to Chris' pulling Buck down next to her. Through everything she kept her gaze trained on Chris. "What have you boys been talking about?"
"Nothing that should concern a lady like yourself madam." Ezra raised the free claw to kiss it. "Merely some Halloween silliness Chris was concerned about."
The hair on the back of Chris' neck stood up when Lilith turned her attention back to him. She grabbed his arm tightly, leaning forward and speaking in a low intent screech. "Ezra is right, all the thefts, the missing cat, just some children playing Halloween pranks. There is nothing to worry about."
Something warned Chris he'd better play along. Nodding he forced his muscles to relax. "You're right, it's nothing to worry about."
"That's right nothing." She continued, "All you need to do is stay out of the church and be a good boy for one more day."
"A good boy." Chris agreed.
Instantly Lilith was all smiles, letting go of his arm she turned back to the others. For the next ten minutes you would have thought that everyone at the table was merely visiting. Only Chris realized that Lilith was giving his men instructions about how they were supposed to act the following day. He was careful to hide his growing horror and revulsion. The entire time Buck said nothing, sitting like a statue beside her. Finally just when Chris thought he couldn't take anymore she turned to Buck. "Come darling, I think we're done here."
Chris watched her lead Buck out the door before turning back to the others. They had resumed their places around the table and were talking about Lilith. Chris sank back into his chair listening, hoping for some clue.
"Buck is a lucky man." JD said fervently.
"Amen to that." Josiah rolled his eyes appreciatively.
"A paragon of feminine perfection." Ezra enthused, "A Venus come to earth."
Chris' sudden coughing fit drew everyone's attention. Clearing his throat he asked. "So all of you think she's pretty."
The response was loud and affirmative. Chris asked a couple of more questions, but found it incredibly hard to pin any of the men down as to what made Lilith so beautiful. Finally he gave up and left. He spent the afternoon visiting around town and asking careful questions about Lilith. By evening he was tired and even more confused. Of the people who had actually seen her, every man thought she was lovely, every woman hated her. But neither could say why for sure. Walking back to the saloon after dark he heard suspicious noises down the alley behind the livery. Investigating he found Yosemite's helper, Caleb Martin, packing a mule. Caleb was an ex-slave like Nathan but older than Josiah. A good steady man nothing ever seemed to faze him. Now though, his hands were shaking as he tried to sling the packsaddle up.
"Caleb, is something wrong?" Chris spoke quietly not wanting to frighten the old man.
"Mr. Larabee!" Caleb dropped the saddle and spun around the picture of fright. "Please sir, don't tell her you saw me. I'm leaving town and I won't tell nobody what is going on.
"Tell who?" Chris demanded stepping closer.
"The witch woman." Caleb moaned. "Please sir, I know she done tole all of you to keep the town quiet but I won't tell I promise."
"Wait a minute, are you talking about Lilith." Chris demanded, stepping forward to block the older man's way. "Do you know her? What is she?"
Caleb's eyes widened. "You see her as she really is don't you?"
"If you mean I see an ugly hag then yes." Chris growled. "What is she?"
"She's a devil spirit, a swamp witch." Caleb replied. Drawing a shaky hand over his face he spoke again in a calmer fashion. "I saw her kill my master forty some years ago. She'll kill your friend too."
"You and I need to talk." Chris urged Caleb back into the barn.
Two hours later Caleb left town headed for Chris' shack. He would stay there until it was safe. Chris headed for the church looking for Josiah. He now knew what was wrong and he was going to need help, spiritual help. He found Josiah sitting outside the church with a troubled look on his face.
"Josiah what are you doing out here?" Chris started up the steps. "Thought you'd be asleep by now."
"I can't seem to go in." The older man rubbed his eyes. "Every time I try something stops me."
Chris had stopped right behind him. "I thought you might say that." Pulling out his pistol, he raised it over the preacher's head. "I'm sorry Josiah, this is gonna hurt you more than me." Bringing the butt of the pistol down fast, Chris hit him on the head. Looking around quickly to be sure no one had seen Chris carefully dragged the unconscious man into the church.
The morning sun was streaming in through the windows before Josiah came to. Chris had been a bit worried that he'd struck to hard. When Josiah began to stir Chris poured two cups of coffee and waited.
"What happened?" Josiah took the offered cup gratefully.
"I hit you on the head. Sorry," Chris grinned, "I couldn't think of any other way to get you inside. How do you feel."
"I have a headache."
"Do you remember the last three days?"
Josiah thought for a moment, a confused look on his face. "I don't know, when did you get into town?"
"Yesterday." Chris moved to sit in front of Josiah. "What is the last thing you remember?"
Josiah opened his mouth to reply, then paused frowning. His face cleared and looking up at Chris he said. "I was playing poker with Vin and Ezra. Buck brought his new lady into the saloon to meet us."
"Do you remember what she looked like." Chris pressed, according to Caleb in order to save Buck he was going to need some help. That meant the rest of the Seven had to be freed from Lilith's spell. Caleb said the only way to do this was to get them into a holy place.
The look on Josiah's face said he did remember. Chris smiled grimly, "Let me tell you about swamp witches."
He filled Josiah in on all Caleb had told him the night before. According to the old ex-slave a swamp witch used the souls of men to maintain her beauty. Every year just before All Hallows Eve she went in search of a new one. Once a victim had been chosen and placed under her control the witch drained the energy of his body until the full moon. One of her abilities was the power of illusion allowing her to confuse the minds of others. They would see her as perfect, beautiful and sweet. Men were especially vulnerable, making it easy to control their minds completely. Woman would be blinded to her ugliness but they could still sense it. That was why every woman in town hated her on sight. On the full moon closest to All Hallows Eve she killed her victim in a special ritual disappearing for another year. She would feed off his tortured soul during that time. The next year she started all over again.
"So why weren't you affected?" Josiah asked, "She had all of us under her power instantly."
Chris grimaced he didn't like the memory Josiah's question brought up. "Sarah death makes me immune."
"Sarah?" Josiah looked confused.
"She died because of Ella." Chris looked tortured. "Anyone who has lost their soul mate through the actions of a woman is immune."
"I'm sorry." Josiah said quietly.
Shrugging off the pain Chris moved to the window to look outside. "Tonight is the full moon. We have to get the others here inside the church before dark. Caleb said if we interrupt the ritual at just the right moment, it will backfire on her." Turning he faced Josiah, "The energy she stole from Buck will be returned to him and she will die. Otherwise, he's doomed."
Josiah nodded, "It won't be easy, I've wanted to come inside for three days now. Can't knock them out they may not wake up in time."
"I have a plan." Chris' face was grim.
If anyone had been watching the back of the church that day they would have wondered at the sanity of their peacekeepers. Chris' plan was simple, take down the easiest of the seven first and work their way up to the hardest. Accordingly he told JD to run a message to Josiah behind the church. It was easy for the older man to wrap JD in a bear hug and drag him inside. Nathan was next, JD ran up to the clinic yelling Josiah had fallen off the roof of the church. It took Josiah, Chris and JD to pull the struggling healer inside. When it was over Nathan had to treat everyone for scrapes.
It was a toss up who was going to be worse after that, Vin or Ezra. Since Ezra wasn't up yet they started with Vin. The cagey tracker sensed something was up from the beginning. He followed JD willingly enough at first but when he saw Josiah wasn't on the ground he turned to run. Luckily Chris had planned for that, he tackled Vin holding him while Josiah, JD and Nathan closed in. The four men had a hard time carrying the struggling, bucking tracker inside.
Vin nixed the 'falling off the roof' idea for Ezra. He pointed out that he'd been suspicious because JD had come directly to him instead of yelling for the whole town's attention. Ezra would never believe it. Instead he told the others to leave it to him. They were to hide behind the church and watch. The four men were waiting when Ezra came sneaking around the back of the church. They watched in amazement at he crept up the back steps and opened the door. Then Ezra froze. He would start to stick a foot inside the door then pull it back. This continued for several seconds. JD was having a hard time not laughing. Just when it looked like Ezra was going to give up Vin sauntered around the corner. Leaning against the church wall he looked up at the gambler.
"No." Ezra glared at him. "I never lose a bet."
Vin grinned slyly. "Well then go inside. The bet was you have to go inside and get Josiah's bible."
Ezra turned back to the door regarding it suspiciously. Nathan could hear him muttering under his breath, "I can do this. I CAN do this." Drawing in a great gulp of air the stubborn southerner literally threw himself in the door. Groaning, he turned over to the sound of laughter. Vin and the others stood at the foot of the stairs grinning at him. Gazing at them somewhat bewildered Ezra asked, "What just happened here?"
Later that afternoon Lilith came looking for all of them again in the saloon. She wanted to be sure no one would be interfering with her plans. Buck was still with her, looking even worse than the day before. Chris and Ezra had to work at keeping their poker faces firmly in place at the sight of him.
"Gentlemen, where is the rest of your little band?" Lilith stopped in front of their table. Chris noticed she never let go of Buck.
"Nathan got called out of town, ranch hand broke his leg. Probably gone till morning." Chris kept his expression bland. He didn't want to tip this creature off before time. Actually Nathan was at Chris' shack talking to Caleb, getting a list of the things he would need to counteract Lilith's spell.
"Vin and JD went out to Nettie Well's place for the day. Josiah is around somewhere." Ezra volunteered. It had been decided he and Chris were the best at hiding their emotions so they would deal with the witch.
"What good boys." Lilith cooed. She was looking forward to tasting the soul of the man next to her. These men were so helpful maybe she would come back next year for one of them. "I think both of you should stay here in the saloon today. It's going to be cold out tonight, tell Josiah he should stay here too."
"I do believe you are right." Ezra shuddered for effect. "I so hate the cold."
Shortly after, Lilith and Buck left town in a buckboard. Behind them, far enough to stay out of sight, six silent shadows followed.
About two miles northwest of town was a small box canyon. Lilith's trail led inside. Stopping outside the six men dismounted and prepared to continue on foot. Before they started Nathan had some final instructions.
"According to what Caleb told Chris and I we only have one chance at this." Nathan was handing everyone a leather bag as he spoke. "This mixture will interrupt the spell. We have to throw them all at the same time."
Each man took his bundle carefully.
"What's in it?" Josiah asked lifting the bag to his nose for a sniff.
"Lavender, sage and some stuff I don't want to talk about." Nathan shuddered a bit.
"Let's do this." Chris growled. "Everyone be careful."
The six men crept carefully through the brush until they found the buggy. They waited there while Vin scouted ahead. When he returned there was a whispered conference.
"Canyon ends up ahead and the brush spreads out. Sort of surrounds a cleared space in front of the canyon wall." Vin drew in the dirt as he spoke. "She an Buck are in there. Nothings happened yet. If we spread out before moving in we can block her in."
Nodding grimly everyone followed Vin forward. Soon he indicated with a wave of his arm that they were close. Spreading out everyone crept closer through the brush. Chris kept JD next to him. He wasn't sure how the young man was going to react.
When the six men peered through the brush they all had to fight down various exclamations of horror. Lilith has been busy and Chris now knew what all the recent robberies were for. Buck lay staked out on the red velvet curtain naked except for a blue silk scarf over his nether regions. Chris heard JD's indrawn breath and placed a warning hand on his arm. Buck already looked dead. Next to him the missing wash kettle bubbled over a fire. Lilith was humming as she stirred adding various things to it. Tied to a stake nearby Mirabelle mewed piteously. Chris motioned for everyone to hold where they were. They had to time this just right or Buck would die.
They didn't have to watch long. As the evening sun started to touch the top of the canyon walls Lilith turned to Buck taking off her dress. Chanting slowly she dipped a cup of potion from the pot and began to pour it in a circle around Buck. Chris wasn't sure what language she was speaking and wished he could ask Ezra and Josiah what it was. From the look of horror on their faces he had a feeling both men understood it. It took several cups of the potion to complete the circle. When she was done Lilith raised her arms to the sky and called out in the same strange language. Stepping into the circle she straddled Buck waist sitting on the scarf. Running her hands lightly over his chest she switched to English.
"Such a pretty man, it's really a shame to kill you." Lilith licked her lips. "Of course if I don't kill you I won't be able to taste your soul. Such a strong soul too, you'll keep me well fed this year." Laughing she tilted her head back and chanted to the heavens again. Chris felt JD move next to him and placed a cautioning hand on his arm again. According to Caleb they had to wait until Lilith released Buck from her mind spell before ending this. As Lilith chanted they began to move in closer. Chris tensed preparing to act it would be soon now.
Lilith looked back down at the man underneath her. Leaning forward she cupped his face whispering, "Bound to my will you are. Will you free now I swear."
Buck moved for the first time, blinking his eyes he gradually focused on the creature above him. His reaction was immediate, letting out a hoarse cry he tried to move away. The leather held him easily in his weakened state. Focusing back on Lilith he yelled.
"Let me go."
"I can't do that darling." Lilith ran a clawed hand down his chest. "I need your soul."
"Lady you're crazy." Buck started to struggle again.
Lilith laughed as she brought her hands together over his chest. They started to glow slightly.
"Kill me and my friends will hunt you to the ends of the earth." Buck threatened.
Lilith paused the glow of her hands fading. Smiling evilly she taunted him, "Your friends will never know what happened to you. Right now they are sitting in the saloon being good boys. Tomorrow they won't even remember you existed."
"I wouldn't count on that." Chris stepped out of the brush. He knew an entrance line when he heard one.
Lilith hissed pointing at him. "I don't know how you figured me out but it won't do you any good." Her mouth opened again but the sounds that came out sounded like an angry cat.
"Now!" Chris yelled, pulling out his bag of the potion.
"You can't stop me!" Lilith screamed bringing her hands over Buck's chest again. Buck cried out in pain arching against his chains. It was exactly what they had been waiting for. The six men moved forward surrounding the circle. Six pairs of hands opened six bags and threw the contents across the circle and its inhabitants. The effect was instantaneous. Lilith screamed in pain trying to arch away from Buck but held by some sort of swirling light. Buck cried out as well twisting desperately under her. There was a blinding flash and when they could see again only an unconscious Buck remained.
"Buck!" Nathan rushed forward to check him over. The others moved to untie him while Chris surveyed the clearing warily, looking for some clue as to Lilith's whereabouts. At Nathan's exclamation he turned back.
"Get him up I want this stuff off him." The healer was brushing at the gray dust that covered Buck.
"What is it?" JD asked.
"I think it's what's left of Lilith." Nathan's words horrified all of them. Josiah grabbed Buck's left arm.
"Vin take his other arm, we'll stand him up." The big preacher didn't want Buck to wake up with dead witch all over him either.
Chris moved forward to, standing behind Buck to help hold him up. JD and Nathan used their bandanas to hastily brush the dust away. Buck came to while they were working around his waist and started to fight.
"Easy stud." Chris said. "We need to get this dust off you."
"Well I think I can take care of down there myself." Buck pulled free and would have fallen on his face if not for Chris' steadying hand. Everyone paused for a moment unsure of what next to do. Hesitating the way men do when things have gotten too weird and emotional.
Vin broke the silence "Least now we know what it takes to make Bucklin blush." Everyone shot a look at Buck was bright red from head to toe. JD turned his head trying desperately not to laugh. Nathan looked at the ground while Josiah studied the sky. They might have gotten under control it if not for Chris' comment.
"Only other time I've seen him blush like that was when he got poison ivy." At the others questioning looks he grinned wickedly. "Was in the same place."
It was too much. Starting with JD the laughter took over. Soon everyone except Chris and Buck were sitting/rolling on the ground. Buck tried to maintain a wounded expression but his good nature reasserted itself. He let them laugh while he got dressed before moving back to stand beside Chris. "I guess I owe them and you huh? Saved me again pard."
"After all this time who's counting." Chris looked at his oldest friend and Buck felt like he'd been slapped. The expression of the blond man's face was one he had thought never to see again. Chris hadn't worn that look of amused peace since Sarah and Adam's deaths. Smiling widely he clapped a dark clad shoulder.
"Let's go back to town. Woman wouldn't let me drink and I need a beer."
Chris looked at the laughing men collapsed in the grass then back at Buck. "Sounds good, we can leave the children here to clean up." Looking back at the others he shook his head, "When you sober up be sure to bring all this stuff back with you, especially the cat."
Later that night Chris sat at the Seven's table in the saloon watching his friends. Nathan and Buck had just arrived from the clinic with the good news that there seemed to be no lingering effects from Lilith's spell. Ezra and Vin had their heads together planning what he didn't know. Just the thought of what those two might come up with made him cringe. Josiah seemed to be deep in contemplation. Chris made a mental note to talk to the preacher tomorrow. It was one thing to have faith in God and believe in evil. It was another totally to be face to face with evil. He knew all his men had been affected by the last few days. Chris felt he had seen the true 'bad element' tonight.
JD plopped down in the chair next to Chris a glass of beer in hand.
"Did you return Mrs. Harrington's cat?" Chris asked.
"Just did." JD grinned, "They sure were glad to see each other."
"Why did she take the cat?" Ezra asked. Only Josiah had heard the entire story.
"After she killed Buck she was going to store his soul in Mirabelle." Chris answered then waited with a slight grin for what he knew was coming.
"You mean she was gonna put me in a lady cat?" Buck groaned, "That is a crime against nature."
The others laughed. JD's face suddenly brightened. "Hey Chris I forgot, Mrs. Harrington sent you a message."
"What?" Chris leaned back preparing to take a sip of whiskey.
"She said to tell you that the next time the sewing circle meets, she's gonna tell them you're the sweetest gunfighter she's ever met."
Chris choked as the sip went down wrong while the rest of the table roared.