Josiah's Prayer for Ezra

by Melody Byard

August 27, 2000

Disclaimer: Don't own them, never will own them and I am too poor to make any money off of them. I'm just in it for the GREAT pics. of Ezra and reading the Great fan Fiction of the seven written by some wonderful writers. So if you want to sue me then let me tell you that all I own are two Siamese cats and you can't have them and anything else that I have is rented.

Note: By the way this is my first fan fiction so please be gentle with me. :) if you think that their should be a follow up story too after this than please write one or e-mail me and so can see if the muses will be kind enough to lone me the follow up idea. :) I would like to thank those brave and fearless beta readers of mine, Who were brave enough to fight the mixing of tenses, spelling and all around bad grammar to make a good story better. They are Robyn, Kerry, Tess, Suzy and to Michelle who is brave enough to write her own version of what happened to poor Ezra and to Not Tasha, I have already started on my version to what I think happened to poor Ezra : ) so please be patient with me : ) Ladies, if I could I would lone you Ezra for a day *SIGH* but a lass I can't do that so would you settle for my all around thanks and HUGE HUGS? : )

Warning: Have your Puffs ready and try not to cry over the keyboard. It's not a good idea.

The pounding of the rain against Nathan's window sounded like tiny military drums to Josiah's ears as he looked out of the window of Nathan's clinic at the street below and watched his four brothers walk into the night. They were headed for the saloon, to wait for the rain to stop, and await for their vengeance on the man who had hurt their black sheep, their friend, but mostly their brother - and no one hurts their brother.

It had been four days since they discovered that Ezra was missing. Four long days and nights of not knowing where he was. Four long days of wondering if they would find him in time. Four days of worrying if they would ever see Ezra again.

Josiah turned his red-rimmed eyes away from the window as the sound of Ezra's harsh cough from the sick bed, brining him back to the present and out of his musings. He walked over and slowly lowered his giant frame in the rickety chair that would someday collapse from the never-ending use it had withstood during all the injuries the others had endured. As he shifted, trying to find a comfortable position on its hard wooden surface, a small smile spread across his Josiah's face as he realized that the chair would not break tonight. He slowly stretched out his long legs in front and turned to watch the uneven breathing of his son.

He glanced quickly over to where Nathan was catching up on some much need sleep to be sure that Ezra's coughing had not disturbed him. Poor old Nathan, he had been up most of the night working on Ezra trying to remove the bullet that had lodged itself too close to the conman's heart. The healer then spent the rest of the night sewing up the many cuts and applying his soothing salves on his various bruises he now sported all over his battered body and wrapping up his cracked ribs and broken hand.

He smiled a little as he remembered Nathan shooing the rest of his brothers out of the room and ordering them all to get some sleep. He knew as well as Nathan, that each one of the seven will come back into the room when Nathan was asleep in order to check on Ezra for themselves and to reassure that the family was still whole. He knew, as well as Nathan did, that each one of the group would be back as soon as Nathan was asleep in order to resume their self-appointed vigils over their fallen comrade. Sighing heavily, Josiah bowed his tired head once more and looked at his son's battered face.

"No, Lord, no one will sleep well tonight."

Josiah looked down at the man he considered his son. He took a piece of wet cloth and gently washed Ezra's fevered face carefully circumventing his bruises and cuts. Yes, the villain who did this to his boy would surely pay for what he did when his brothers caught him.

"Yes, Lord!!" Josiah's tearful voice softly rumble the airless room. "I know that you once said, 'Vengeance is mine,' but Lord sometimes we need to help that vengeance along a little bit," he said as he gently ran his hand over Ezra's fevered brow. He lifted up the unharmed hand to hold it in his large one.

"Lord, please don't take my son home to you tonight," he pleaded, remembering Nathan's grief-stricken face as he told the others that it would be a miracle if Ezra lasted through the night.

"Lord, you know that I believe in miracles. So Lord, I'm humbly ask'n you tonight for a miracle." He paused to watch as Ezra suffered through another rough coughing fit. "It's not a miracle for myself, it's for my son. You see, You know that I thanked you every day for bringing him and the others into my life when I needed them the most.

"However, Lord, you must know that Ezra is special to me. He came into my life when I needed a son and He needed a father," he gently smiled. "Yes Lord, I know that he will never ever admit that to anyone, including himself, but you must understand Lord, that's just his way of dealing with things and I understand that."

"I need him in my life Lord, so I ask You to please overlook his faults. Search deep into his soul for his good one. I know that You know that he has possesses good qualities or else You would have never sent him to me.

" I..., I love him, Lord. He is like the son that I never had and I would do anything to see him smile or to hear them five dollar words that he's always using.

"He's my son, Lord and I'm asken You right nicely for that miracle. Because Lord, I want him to live, to realize how important he is to the family. Mostly I just want to see him live. Yes Lord, I know I am being selfish, but I just can't help it Lord.

"We need him," he paused tearfully as he gently stroked Ezra's hair. "I need him."

Silence once again settled in the room as Josiah wiped the tears from his eyes with the sleeve of his gray shirt and listened once more to the uneven breathing of his son.

Suddenly Ezra's breathing rapidly altered. Abruptly, his body began to shake and, just as abruptly went still. Stopped.

"NATHAN!!!!" he yelled.

Nathan jumped out of bed and rushed over to look at Ezra. Chris and the others stormed the room hoping that they had not lost a member of their family. Nathan finally looked up at the men who gathered in the room and slowly a relieved smile spread across his worn features.

"His fever broke and he's breathing just fine," Nathan looked towards Josiah. "Looks like you got your miracle Josiah," he said as he shook his head and smiled. "Your miracle."

The End

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