The sun seemed weaker here on this ridge looking down into the valley that the small town was in. Coon had been watching it for just about two hours and had seen no one out beyond the closely packed buildings. It looked like everyone that lived there was out and about busy doing this and that all right around the buildings.
There looked to be a couple of larger green houses going up but it seemed like the most activity was around the town square. Wishing for a pair of good binoculars, Coon slowly made her way to another point on the ridge that would hopefully give her a better view.
She carefully looked for any human tracks as she made her way closer to the town. She had barely gotten settled in when there was some real excitement!
Someone was approaching the town from the north on horseback. Coon watched as the person was challenged about 200 yards outside of town. She had spotted the two men who stepped in front of the horse, when she first got to the ridge. There were two more on the south side of town. No one, it seemed, was watching on the east or west sides. Which might have made sense since there were no roads going out of town there, but she was on the west side and thought they were either careless or there was someone there but just better at hiding.
After a couple of minutes, the two men let the rider go on into town. Coon watched as the rider slowly made his way to the town square. The rider reminded her of the cowboys she would read about in Louis LaMour’s books.
With a shudder, she realized what was going on down there. They were fixing to hang someone. By the time that the “cowboy” got to the square, there was a man being brought out of one of the buildings and it looked like all he had on was a pair of pants. No shirt, no shoes. He was led to a huge oak tree where a rope had been tossed over a large branch. Coon could tell the second that the man noticed the cowboy, his whole body seemed to relax and although he was far away, she would have sworn he grinned. She watched as he tossed his head back and actually laughed!
The laughter didn’t stop the rope from being put around his neck and just when about five of the people from the town got a good grip on the rope’s other end and began to pull, when all heck broke loose!
I think Poppy is plum upset! I’ve never seen him chop wood quite so violently. No way was I going out back. I could hear the whacks of the ax even down in the cellar where I was helping Granny update our supply list. She is very organized, it would be amusing if it wasn’t so tedious!
“Granny, what is Poppy so upset about today? Did I do something wrong? Or The Bugger?”
“Oh no sweetie, you both have been absolute angels!” (see, she DIDN’T know about the deer hide in her tub! YES!) “Poppy just isn’t liking what he is hearing on the TV lately and although I’ve told him to stop watching it, he insists on watching every single bad story out there lately. I think that this years presidential election debates are what has him in a tizzy today. Ever candidate is trying to hang the others out to dry. Although it could be any other story out there. Now how many jars of peaches do we have left?”
“I counted 25 here but we do have five up in the pantry; but are not counting those, right?”
“That’s right honey. Ok, now if we can check the onions, we’ll be done down here and we can start a batch of chocolate chip cookies….that might be enough to snap your Poppy out of his mood.”