I’m old, too old to have any worth. Like my old dog I have lived beyond my usefulness. Once a fire has now become the ashes. the boss will surely get rid of me. A measly 250 dollars will not get me true my golden years, I have no family nor anyone who would care to take care of me. Face it candy, you’ve wasted your life on this farm. No wife, no children and no friends. My legacy will never have continued; I might as well drown my sorrows at the old tavern.
The tavern is only a place for young me to rest their body from a hard day of work, my body haven’t worked in ages. In fact, the hardest work I have done today was chase that pesky mouse out of the barn. Rum doesn’t even taste like rum. Right now everything tastes like saw dust to me. Can’t even hear anything in this damn place, the only one sense that works is my vison and what I see is an old goat in a room full of skirt and muscle.
“Fancy seeing you hear,” that voice shocked me. I turned around to find the young Slim behind me.
“Same to you, what brings you?”
“A little birdie told you’d be here.”
“Yeah, must be an old bird to notice me.”
“Don’t say that. You’re still young.”
“Yeah if you reckon sixty is young enough for yah? With age comes worthlessness as I do believe the phrase goes?” I said whimsically as I chugged the beer straight down.
“Easy mate, I reckon you’re having one of those mid-life crisis?” said Slim, he patted my back, stomped his feet and started to laugh. I could tell he wasn’t taking me seriously
“Yeah, an end life crisis. Face it Slim I have lived beyond my warranty. There ain’t telling when the boss gives me the boot. I reckon when my monthly check comes in next month. I can’t blame him, who wants a walking corpse any way”. Seeming so much pity in his eyes, I just continue to drown his face in with liquor.
“Y’all setting in my seat,” behind Slim is a six-foot delinquent. I believe his name is Butch. He is easily agitated and is clutching is hand very fight. You could say him and Curley were to peas in a pod.
“I don’t want no trouble, Butch.”
“Yeah well you got some. See where that old bag of bones is sitting, that’s my seat. I’ve been sitting there every day after work and have not once seen him.” His eyes pierce me like a sword. His glaring at me as though I have committed a crime. I don’t think I couldn’t take this guy; he is in the pinnacle of his youth. Strong face, strong fists and most of his body is made out of sweat and veins. On the other hand, Slim isn’t that bad himself, I could always count on that boy to get me out of a pinch.
“Now, now fellas, let’s not get carried away,” said Slim, standing in front of Butch, nearly matching his height.
“Boss’s boy aint to happy about you. Maybe Curley would be unhappier if I told him you were fooling around with his bitch.” Butch stood taller than slim and assorted his dominance. It is terrifying just to think of what that 200 pounds of flesh could do to Slim or me.
“You threating me son. I aint a saint but I aint fooling around with anyone neither.” Slim stood even taller than Butch. I can tell that Butch is starting to flitch under slims mighty shadow.
“What about you? Old man,” Butch violently asked me.
“I don’t wanna fight Butch.”
“Didn’t Carlson shoot your dog. You’re a real coward for letting a weasel like that do your job. How about you split old man. Oh and a true man would shoot his companion not let another do it.” He started to laugh at me. His words hurt, hurt more than any bullet. I couldn’t bring myself to shoot my old dog nor could I fight for him but I don’t want to get bullied anymore.
“You crossed a line mate, prepare to get your ASS KICKED!!!” Without warning, my body starts moving towards him at him. He is taller, stronger and faster than me but that doesn’t matter anymore.
“You can laugh at me all you want but no one disgraces the name of my, of my DOG!” I shouted from the top of my lungs and punched the bastard as hard as I could. I’ve been pushed around for the last time; I couldn’t save my old dog but I promise that I won’t get bullied any longer. I couldn’t feel anything but for some reason, everything started going dark and before I knew it.
“Candy, Candy… old man you okay,” that same voice kept calling out to me.
“Ugh…What happened?” I wiped my eyes
“Slim… what is going on?” Next thing I notice is that I’m on the floor, Butch is on the ground bruised and bloody every was. For some reason, Slim and a couple of Butches mates are wounded too.
“Ha-ha well after you gave that bloke a real knock on the chin, a couple of his buddies came to back him up, but I took care of them.” He said smiling at me. And took care of him he did, five men opposite of butch looked like yesterday’s meat loaf while Slim only seems to be scratched in a few places.
“Hey, you leave this mess to me and go back to the house. I heard that the new blokes are playing cards over there. Why don’t you join them?” I couldn’t refuse after witnessing what he did. I picked myself up and limped to the door. I’m thankful to have someone like him in my life.
“I don’t wanna die here. I’m going find a place of my own one day and I’ll protect it.”
“That’s a fine dream there, Candy I hope one day it comes true.” Those words meant the world to me. I couldn’t be happier.