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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Sizzle (05/02/13)

TITLE: The Good, the Bad, and the Greasy
By Vince Martella


The doors swung open, and a pair of black boots immediately brought everything to a grinding halt. They were new and shinny, with silver spurs, and they held a giant of a man. Every voice hushed and every eye lowered as Bart Bacon strode confidently into the saloon and walked toward the bar.

The bartender, Flap, hurried to wipe the bar clean in front of Bart.

“Gimme a sarsaparilla, Jack,” demanded Bart. His eyes swept the room like a machine gun. “Make it a double.”

Flap, known to everyone as Jack in these parts, complied quickly. He handed Bart a glass with a trembling hand. “Here you are, Mr. Bacon, sir.”

Bart turned, elbow resting against the bar, and gulped down his drink. It slammed on the bar with a resounding smack. Everyone in Breakfast City knew better than to mess with Bart; had had a quick temper and an even quicker trigger finger. He was one tall streak-o-mean. Everyone called him ‘ol fatback, but none to his face.

Bart walked to a table in the corner, and spoke to the occupied chair.

“Yer in my seat,” he said.

The stranger, back toward Bart, hardly moved. He was hunched over a bowl of chili, his wide brimmed hat obscuring his features. After three days’ ride and little sleep, he was in no mood for a fight.

“Hey, are you deaf or somethin’?”

The stranger turned slowly and said, “I heard ya the first time”.

A hushed murmur ran through the saloon. “That’s him. That’s Wally Waffle.”

Bart grew impatient as the stranger turned back to his chili.

“I’ll be finished in a minute,” Wally said, his mouth full of food. “Then you can have your seat back.”

“You’re finished now,” Bart said, as he spun Wally around in his chair. Bart reached for his gun, but as the chair whipped around, coat tails flying, Bart realized Wally’s gun was drawn all along. The big man eased his gun slowly back in the holster.

On the other end of the bar, the whispers were growing.

“I heard he killed a man in El Paso,” said one. “Shot ‘em right between the eyes.”
“I heard he was wanted for rustlin’ cattle,” said another.
“I hear tell he got into a scrape with the Berry brothers,” said a third. Broke Blue’s arm and shot Straw’s ear clean off. And ‘ol Razz still walks with a limp to this day."

“Listen, I’m not looking for a fight,” Wally said. He backed up slowly, keeping his gun on Bart and dropped a bill on the bar. “Much obliged,” he told Flap.

“You ain’t seen the last of me,” yelled Bart. “You’d better watch yer back.”

Wally stopped in front of the saloon doors, tipped his hat to Bart and slipped out.

Wally knew the rumors were true, and worse, too. After a bath and a nap, he headed toward the stables to retrieve his horse and head out of town. He was determined to leave before trouble found him.


He stopped in his tracks and spun around. Bart was standing in the street; coat tails pulled back, hands hovering over his guns.

“Listen, Bart,” yelled Wally. ”We can talk this out.”

“I ain’t much for talking,” Bart said. “Now draw!”

Wally looked deep into Bart’s eyes and knew he wouldn’t ask again.

They drew, and Wally shot first; but he succeeded only in dislodging Bart’s hat from his head. Bart stood, gun aimed squarely at Wally’s chest.

“It’s time to meet yer Maker, Waffle,” Bart said. “And from the rumors I’ve heard about you, He ain’t gonna be happy to see you.”

“I’ve already met Him, Bart. He changed my life; forgave me for all the wrong I’d done. He can change you too.”

Bart lowered his gun slightly. Then he set his jaw firmly. ”Well…, make sure to tell Him I said hello.”

He cocked the hammer and drew down, but squinted, and wiped his brow and staggered. The sweltering summer sun had had its way on his unprotected head; he was already beginning to sizzle as grease blinded his eyes. He dropped his gun and fell to his knees.

Wally approached, holding out Bart’s hat. “Looking for this?"

Bart donned it and wiped his eyes.

“Thanks,” said Bart. “I appreciate you not shooting me.” He put his arm around Wally’s shoulder. “Say, how ‘bout you and I get a saspirilla and you tell me more about that Maker of yours…?”

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This article has been read 330 times
Member Comments
Member Date
lynn gipson 05/11/13
Ingenious. Loved your characters and smiled all the way through this. Thanks for sharing this original and unique take on the topic!

BLessings, Lynn
C D Swanson 05/11/13
This story was certainly not lacking on characters...Nice job with the subject/topic, and an interesting ending.

God bless~
Lillian Rhoades 05/11/13
A real western cowboy tale, with wonderful, realistic dialogue and suspense.

"As grease blinded..." does keep the topic in mind, but I would suggest: "As sweat blinded..."

I loved how the story ended with good overcoming the bad.
Judith Gayle Smith05/12/13
It is so true - bacon and waffles do go wonderfully together!

Your characters are so delightfully imaginative!

Have a blessed Mother's Day . . .
Christina Banks 05/12/13
I loved your story. You painted an interesting scene. I really liked the ending. At the beginning you talked about a machine gun, based on the rest of the story, I wondered if that was out of place. Would machine guns be in the Wild West? I could be wrong. I'm glad waffle got to talk about the maker instead of meeting him.
Bea Edwards 05/14/13
You crafted a grand tale. There is another similar word play story with a Ness-ish twist. Enjoyed both of these creative clever entries immensely.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 05/16/13
Congratulations on ranking 2 in your level and 21 overall!