The Saga of Miles Forrest

The only thing bad about this plan was that someone could get killed.  Windy Dawson, a good man, was up in the Express Car with the regular railroad guard along with the two guards hired to see this shipment through.  I was in the car next to the Express.  Hopefully the guise would work, and hopefully when the outlaws appeared they would not do any shooting, but just grab the “ore” and leave.
With the heavy load I didn’t figure the attack would happen in the mountains, but down on the flat where they could have a wagon waiting.  I sat in the car, waiting, wishing for the old days when they had a stove in the car and a coffeepot.  Sitting there I began to think that the first thing I need to do when I get home was work on the cabin.  We had a table and couple of chairs with a pallet by a good fireplace.  But that was all; there needed to be improvements made.  Who knows, maybe some day Molly and I would have a family.
The slowing of the train brought me out of my thoughts.  This was it.  The train stopped; I could hear talking but not what was being said.  So far, so good.  I moved to the back of the car where I could get a look without giving myself away.  There was a wagon being brought up for the bullion.  Then it came…
“Where’s Forrest?”
I saw the man talking start back to my car with another man.
“Forrest come out!  I have a few things to settle with you!”
I recognized the voice from the eatery.  There was no way I was going to go out there.  Looking around I went out the back door and climbed to the top of the car and quietly began to move toward the Express Car.
“Forrest, this is the last warning!  No use getting anyone else hurt.”
I was about half-way over the top when I heard a shot.  Then a couple more, and then it sounded like a small battle had ensued.  I hurried and saw men behind the wagon firing into the car.  I pulled the Schofield and fired hitting one man at the wagon.  One of the men below looked up and fired, but he was too hasty.  The angle was poor, but I fired anyway.  There was a yelp, so I must have hit him somewhere.
Then shots came up through the rooftop.  Someone was inside.  I jumped across to the top of the Express Car.  The shooting had quieted down, so I laid down on top of the car and tried to push my belly into the wood.
There were more shots from the car I just came from and then a man hollered.  “Get that wagon moving!  Toland, get my horse over here!”
I had open shots, but figured it was best to just stay hunkered and let them ride off.  I would go for them later, but now I was concerned about what was happened inside the car.  One man leaped out; one of the guards jumped on the wagon with the bullion.  Guess that meant that one didn’t make it.
After they were completely gone from sight I climbed down and went to the open door of the Express.  The conductor and engineer were coming my way as well.  Windy was down as were the railroad guard and the outlaw. Outside, one outlaw was dead.
“Bout time you got here, Forrest,” Windy sputtered.
He was bleeding from a wound in the leg, arm, and it looked like the neck.  “Don’t think any of these will kill you,” I said.  “Unless you bleed out.  I need to get the blood stopped.”  Best I could, I began to patch him.  The neck was just a graze, and I was soon able to get the bleeding stopped.
“That fool railroad guard started it.  He couldn’t relax, and one of those outlaw guards pushed him and he reached for his shotgun.  That’s when he was shot.  Then those outside started shooting.  I didn’t have much of a chance.  I shot one of the guards and just emptied my gun on those outside when I finally when down.  They must have been fired blindly like I was just hoping.”
The engineer and conductor were listening.  Dawson looked up, “Any way I could get a drink?”
The conductor went to get a canteen.  “Miles, when they find they’ve been hoodwinked, they’re not going to be happy.  When we get to Pagosa, you better high-tail it back to Durango.  He’ll be wantin’ you.”
I was thinking the same thing.