The Saga of Miles Forrest

I heard the voice behind me, but I saw movement in front of me.  That put a whole new light on the situation.  I reckoned that I could have handled the Scorpion, but with two of them and from what I see in front of me at least one of them was very unstable.  
    “Kill him, Raf!” yelled Ramon.
    I could hear Rafael moving up behind me.  “Patience little brother,” he suggested.  “A little pain, a little wonder, makes it all the more satisfying.”
    Rafael was beside me; he flicked at the edge of my collar with the knife he was holding.  I didn’t move, still holding the Greener trying to be patient, waiting for his friend to step out from behind the stone wall.
    “You did well, Ramon.  Those are fine horses,” congratulated Rafael as he moved from me to stand beside Hawk.
    I took a chance to move my eyes from the outlaw to look at Lucas.  He had his head bowed.  “Lucas,” I said softly.
    “Shut up, Gringo!” yelled the Scorpion or you’ll feel my sting early.
    “I’m sorry, Senor Miles,” whispered Lucas.
    A small smile appeared on my face.  Finally, the other man walked out, but I couldn’t take a chance with the Scorpion standing next to Hawk.  I had thought at first that between myself, Judge Klaser, and Charlie that we could put a good scare into the boys, but with the appearance of Ramon’s brother that changed things.
    The man that now appeared was odd-looking.  By that he was quite short, almost dwarfish.  He was very skinny, and I noticed that he had either been burned or scalped for one side of his head was severely scared.  
    Rafael must have seen me looking at him for he stated, “Meet your master, senor.”  A shrieking laugh came from Rafael, similar to one the Pale Rider would give.  “This is Pepe, and do not mind his appearance, but think of what he will do to you.  Maybe start with your eyes.  No, that would not be good, for then you could not see what he would be doing.”  
    I spit to the ground, then turned my attention to Rafael.  “He’ll never be my master.  I have only one Master–the Lord.”
    That brought another laugh.  “Ha, I was raised to believe, but found my desires to be, let me say, not in accordance with this Jesus.”
    “You still have a chance,” I suggested.
    He paused to look at Lucas.  “Ramon, the kid.  Can he cut it?”
    I had to do something.  First, to get him away from the horses.  I spit on the ground hopefully to anger him.  “Leave the kid alone!”
    “Git!” I hollered to which Hawk and Star responded by taking off.
    That did it; he rushed toward me.  I don’t know why he didn’t disarm me, especially after Pepe appeared.  When Rafael was a yard away I stepped in his direction,  which he was not expecting and swung the Greener catching him on the jaw stunning him and dropping him to the ground.  Both Ramon and Pepe charged me.  There was not much I could do.  I brought the Greener up and fired both barrels.  I wasn’t able to get it leveled and the shot hit them from the belly to the upper thighs cutting them down.  They lay there, bleeding and moaning.
    Immediately I dropped the shotgun then drew my pistol.  I was ready for Fernando to do something but I saw that Lucas had rushed him and they were grappling on the ground.  My movement toward them saved me.  I thought I’d hit Rafael hard enough but as I stepped he threw his knife at me.  That step caused the hilt of the knife to hit me not the blade, I fired at him, the bullet catching him in the middle of his breast.
    The older boy was on top of Lucas pounding him in the face.  Since my pistol was already out I gave him a curt thump over his ear knocking him out.  I reached down to pull Lucas out from under him.
    He was part scared, part angry and was bleeding from his nose and lips.  “Senor Miles, am I a kid?” he asked…
    I didn’t answer, but went to check on Ramon and Pepe.  Ramon had already bled out, but there was still life in Pepe.  Kneeling beside him, he tried to talk, but I could hear his voice it was so low and so weak.  Finally, I heard him ask, “Is it true?”
    “Yes, Jesus is…” was all I could get out before he gave up the ghost and crossed over to meet the judgment.  Did he have time to make it right–I don’t know.
    Going to the unconscious Fernando, I picked him up and tied him on Two-Bits.  “Go see if you can find their horses,” I ordered Lucas, then I whistled and soon Star and Hawk came back to the campsite.  Not long after Lucas came in with the outlaw’s horses.  Grabbing the bodies I tossed them over their horses, then added the body of Ramon with his brother.  I wasn’t about to taint Hawk or Star with one.
    “Mount up on Hawk,” I ordered brusquely.  A dilemma was still before me.  How could I keep Lucas from prison with Fernando still alive?  
    It was a long ride back to Durango…