Jackie and Maude had talked for ten minutes before they saw Ezra unconscious body being carried out of the saloon by Nathan and Josiah followed by Chris, JD, and Buck. Maude quickly gasped and ran over to her injured son.
"What happened?" Jacqueline asked Buck.
"Started a fight," he said with a small smile, "with Chris."
Jackie turned and looked at Chris who quickly turned away from her and watched the two men carry Ezra to his room. Maude walked over to join the Jacqueline and the others. "Now why would he start a fight with Chris?" she asked confused.
Buck's small smile faded and Jacqueline quickly looked to the ground.
Maude impatiently stared at the gunslinger in black. "Mom, why don't you go check on Ezra?" Jacqueline quickly asked.
Chris and JD gave confused looks at Buck as they heard Jacqueline call Maude mom. Maude sighed. "I guess I'll just get the story from Ezra when he awakes!" she said as she flashed Chris and angry look. She then strode off to Ezra's room.
JD who was oblivious to the tension between the other three people asked, "She's your mom? And why did Ezra fight you Chris?"
Jacqueline gave out a nervous sigh, "Yes, she is my mom. My dad didn't think she was capable to take care of me when I was born so he took me to live with him. They weren't married, just kind of like one of those one night stands." Jackie then glanced at Chris after emphasizing the last couple of words. Chris turned and the two made eye contact for the first time after finding out Jacqueline was pregnant. "When I was like, six, my dad showed me a picture of my mother and I've kept it ever since. He told me her name and said she couldn't take care me, " she continued.
JD nodded after getting a good explanation on his first question and turned to Chris to find the other's explanation. Chris turned away from the others and stalked off again to the saloon. Jacqueline sighed as she watched Chris walk off and flashed JD and Buck a small weak smile before walking off to her room.
Ezra woke up with a dull pain in the back of his head. He tried to sit up but he became dizzy. He let out a small moan of pain before hearing his mother's voice.
"Ezra, finally you return," she said with an amused smile on her lips.
Ezra let out another moan before laying back down and closing his eyes.
"Mother . . . what pleasant delight to hear your humor once again."
"Now, Ezra, why ever would you start a fight with Mr. Larabee?" Maude asked with a questioning look.
Ezra's eyes shot open and he sat up as quickly as his head would allow him. "So you haven't heard what Mr. Larabee has done to your long lost daughter?"
Maude gave Ezra a confused look before going over to sit on the edge of his bed. "No. . . . why?" she asked curiously.
"One night I guess Mr. Larabee wanted to talk to Miss Dumas because
she was his former wife's best friend and he thought she was involved in
the fire and death of Mrs. Larabee. Well, Mr. Larabee and Miss Dumas
must have spent awhile ‘talking'. Three months later I was walking
with Miss Dumas and she collapsed. Nathan had some Indian woman check
and found out Jacqueline was pregnant," he explained while rubbing the sore spot on the back of his head.
Maude nodded a little amazed. "But, what if she was with someone else? It might not have been Mr. Larabee. And how do you know that during their talk they. . ."
"Well, after the announcement Mr. Larabee disappeared to his room. Meanwhile young Mr. Dunne and myself were walking past his room to the saloon and heard Mr. Larabee yelling ‘No'. Also Mr. Wilmington later revealed secretly to me, because I inquired if he knew anything, that Chris was the only one Jacqueline . . . you know. But Mr. Larabee has yet to own up to his responsibilities."
"So why start a fight with Larabee?" Maude asked with a hidden feeling of disgust and astonishment.
"Well, at first I was disgusted because it seemed he thought he could go around impregnating women, and pretending like nothing happened. But, when you told me Jacqueline and I were related Mr. Wilmington hackled me first of all, but when Chris came to break us up I couldn't hide my anger any longer. I don't respect a man without decency."
Maude nodded in agreement. That's my boy! A Southern gentleman.
Sunlight poured into the Jacqueline Quinn's room causing her to moan in despair and pull the pillow over her face. She had gotten at the most two hours of sleep, and still felt sick. Last night was one of the worst nights she had experienced in her life. The vomiting, nausea, and headaches had kept her up all night. "I thought they called this morning sickness. . like it happens in the damn morning," she muttered to herself trying to get comfortable. After trying for a couple of seconds she deemed sleep impossible and sat up a little too quickly. A wave of nausea hit again along with her killer headache from the night before. Another moan escaped her before she pulled on a flannel and jeans from the floor and got dressed.
The fresh air hit her and gave her head a little relief. She passed the window of the saloon, glancing through she noticed Buck sitting at a table alone. Jackie made her way through the doors and to his table and sat down..
Buck looked at Jacqueline, she was pale. Her hair was disheveled and she was wearing the clothes she had on last night. Of course she wasn't out last night, she had been stuck in her room and when Buck went to check on her he heard her vomiting. When he had knocked on the door Jacqueline never opened it but claimed she only had a headache and would be fine. He was worried about her. "Hey there, don't you look horrible."
Jacqueline groaned and put her head on Buck's shoulder. Closing her eyes she muttered, "I've gotten two hours of sleep, and my head hurts."
Buck smiled. God, she sounded like a little girl. But to him she was a little girl. Like his little sister. Years ago when Sarah had introduced them she had marriage in mind. But Buck and Jackie had found something stronger. Like a sisterly and brotherly friendship. They would always joke around and laugh when they were together. Sarah had always nagged Buck to marry Jackie but he'd always come back by saying "I can't marry my sister!". He felt bad for her, pregnant, practically alone. He stroked her hair for awhile and noticed she was soundly asleep on his shoulder.
"It's okay," he murmured to her as he put his arm around her so she wouldn't fall.
Suddenly the doors violently sung open and Chris Larabee walked over to Buck. He hadn't noticed Jacqueline until he sat down across from Buck. And God, she looked horrid. Buck saw Chris staring at Jacqueline and saw a twinge of guilt in his eyes. "She couldn't sleep," he said softly to Chris. Chris nodded and tried to look away but he couldn't help looking at the wreck he created.
"So. .," he said in a voice that was shaky, "how is she doing?"
"Not good Chris," Buck said trying to do his best to be patient with Chris.
Chris slightly nodded slowly feeling uneasy.
"Chris, she needs you, she is pregnant and alone," Buck slowly said.
"I can't do anything."
"Chris," he softly pleaded, "just try. . . ."
You don't know how hard this is," he sharply said.
"Chris, you didn't damn yourself. Sarah wouldn't want you to be grim and mourning all the time. She would have wanted you to be happy." Buck said trying not to loose his temper and keep his soft tone with Chris. Chris was his friend, but he acted pig headed sometimes. Especially after Sarah and Adam died.
"Sarah was my wife and the mother of my child. You don't understand."
"I understand completely. But Chris get on with your life. You have another child coming now whether you like it or not. You need to get over this Chris. This could be a new start for you."
"You don't understand." Chris again repeated with his temper rising in his eyes.
"Damn it Chris." Buck suddenly yelled, "You can't just leave her like this, alone. It isn't her fault she's pregnant. I'm sure if she would have had a choice she would have rather just forgotten the whole one night deal. It affects her more then you. Stop just thinking of yourself! What is she going to do?"
Chris stood up angrily, "How the hell am I supposed to know!" Before he stormed out Buck saw the hurt and fear in his eyes.
Buck sighed as he watched Chris leave. If Jacqueline wasn't in
need of a comfortable pillow or comfort he would have stormed right after
Chris. But maybe it was better leaving him to sort out his thoughts.
He kissed the top of Jackie's head and scooped her up to take her back
to her room.
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