The Old Way

by SW MO Hermit

Copyright© 2013 by SW MO Hermit

Romantic Story: Young man resists cuckolding attempt by fiance. He moves west and builds a new life with two women he meets there. One is half Indian. Her grandfather instructs him on the old Indian ways of life modified for modern times. They live well but modestly.

Caution: This Romantic Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa   Consensual   Romantic   Heterosexual   .

Seth Connors had a problem. He was in love. He was in love with the most beautiful woman in the whole town and she said she was in love with him. He had graduated high school almost two years ago and still had not talked her into marrying him. Seth and Patrice had been a couple since their sophomore year in high school. Seth was the quarterback on the school football team. He also run cross country and track during the seasons. Although he was a jock Seth was not the typical jock. He was smart. Unfortunately for Seth he had not studied hard enough to get a scholarship to college and his parents were too poor to send him. Instead of studying during school Seth did just the minimum to get by and partied with his team mates the rest of the time. Well, he partied and chased pussy. Seth did like his pussy and being a jock he got more than his fair share. He did listen to his father though. He always made sure he wore a rubber when he fucked his conquests. He didn't care if they told him they were on the pill or not. He used a rubber. Even if they were protected he believed in being careful so he would not get a disease. After all, the little skanks partied with him and his team mates and he knew many of the other boys didn't use protection. After all, they were typical jocks. They were the modern day centurions. The football field was their battleground and the women who flocked around were theirs by right of conquest. If there wasn't enough women to go around so what, they just double or triple teamed them or worse. Was the girl a little hesitant to fuck them? No problem. They were jocks and stronger than the little bitch. Take what you want. Hell, you deserved it. It's fine. Oh, sure some of the girls cried a little but so what. None of the boys got into serious trouble for it so they said, no harm, no foul. Seth didn't approve of that kind of 'coercion' so unfortunately he didn't get along well with his teammates. They tolerated him as a goody two shoes while he had been in school.

Seth was smart in another way also. He continued going to school after he graduated from high school. He attended the local junior college where he took a Hodgepodge of courses including agricultural, geology, some machine shop, welding and automotive technology courses. Seth was a typical young person in most ways. He had no idea what he wanted to do with his life so he took whatever course interested him or that he heard was easy to get a good grade in. Because of that it took him longer to finish his two year degree than most. He had way more credit hours than required when he finally completed the last of his required courses for the degree. Seth finally earned enough credit hours to be awarded his Associates Degree. His parents watched proudly when he walked across the stage and accepted his degree from the Dean of the college. Here his formal education stopped. There was just no way he could afford to go on to obtain his Bachelors Degree. His parent's income was too large for him to qualify for a grant when his small amount of earnings was considered. He refused to obtain a student loan for the money so he was out of luck. He had some vague plans to return to college at some indefinite date in the future "when he could afford it".

Seth did have what passed for an acceptable job in his small town. He made $7.50 per hour working in a local factory building chairs. Unfortunately he spent almost all he earned on what many would consider frivolous items. Seth drove an old beat up F150 and lived in a small efficiency apartment over his parent's garage. He had to purchase his own food and even pay the utilities for his apartment. He had been spending a lot of money on the upkeep of his old truck. Over the last year he had completely rebuilt the entire drive train and installed new brakes and bearings. Most of the remainder of his money seemed to trickle through his fingers through no real fault of his own. Well maybe it was his fault. He seemed incapable of telling Patrice NO when she demanded something from him. And that is what she did. She demanded things from him. It was beneath her to ask for them or for her to work and purchase things she wanted with her own money.

As has been said, his problems were many but most all of them were caused by or revolved around his girlfriend who he loved. Like many young men when she said jump he asked how high. Seth just could not live with what she wanted him to do this time though. Hell, he was still living more or less with his parents and was broke all the time because of Patrice. They were supposed to be saving money so they could get married. Unfortunately Patrice thought Seth was her own private bank. If she wanted something it was his job to provide it and no questions asked. If she was out of spending money she demanded money from him and like a dummy he gave it to her. It seemed the more he gave her the more she spent. According to her it was up to him how he did it but he was expected to provide anything she demanded. When he could not afford something she made him pay by either cutting off the pussy or by listening to her disrespectful whining. This time though she was not demanding something that cost money. This time she wanted his pride, his manhood and Seth was seriously pissed. He sat in his old truck and listened to Patrice. It was all he could do to hold his temper. His jaw was clinched and his grip on the steering wheel was so tight his hands hurt and his knuckles were white.

Patrice's voice was droning on. Seth heard the words but just could not believe them. Finally he broke into her diatribe and said, "NO! This is bullshit. There is no way I'll let you do that. Just forget it. It aint agonna happen."

Patrice stopped in mid sentence and looked at Seth in shock. Her mouth dropped open. She felt a surge of anger. She could not believe Seth had not only said no to something she wanted but he had been rude and obnoxious when he did so. She leaned back in the seat and glared at him for a minute then began talking once again. She said, "Seth I didn't give you a choice. This is the way it's going to be. You have no choice. I have already talked with Mr. Ashland and told him you would rent the apartment for us. He has the rental agreement completed and is waiting for you to come by and sign it. He needs the first and last month's rent now and one month's rent for the deposit. We will move in the first of the month."

"Patrice I only have a little over $2000.00 in the bank. The apartment will take $1800.00 of that just for us to move in then I will have to pay out the ass for deposits to get all the utilities turned on. Even if I wanted to I don't have the money for this. And I'm telling you right now I have no intention of doing what you demanded tonight. We're through. Why in the hell would you think I would spend all my savings on an apartment for us to live in and then let you move fat ass Harold in to be your lover while I paid the bills for you. I thought you loved me. I thought we were going to get married when we saved a little more money."

"Oh, honey I do love you. We are going to get married. Haven't I already set the date? Harold and I will just move into our apartment two weeks before the wedding. Harold and I have already picked out the most wonderful place for our Honeymoon too. We decided you would take us to Destin, Florida for a week." Patrice smiled and continued, "You know how hot I look in my little bikini. Remember how horny you get when I wear it? Just think what it'll be like when I am laying there and Harold is rubbing sun screen all over my hot body. You always say you love to see me cum. Think what it'll be like to see me Cumming while he rubs my titties and pussy. Can't you just see his big cock slamming into my juicy cunt? Oh, honey it will be a perfect week. You'll see."

"NO. No way. I don't even know why I'm talking to you about this shit. Just forget it. We're through." Seth started the truck and began driving back toward town. Patrice sat on her side of the truck and glared at Seth. Her mind was in turmoil. She was seething in anger. How dare he thwart her plans like this? Hadn't she and Harold been working up to this for almost a year now? The way wimpy Seth gave in to everything she demanded of him they were sure he was ready for this final step. She had made sure Seth had seen her and Harold making out several times. At first he had become angry and they had fought but over the last year he seemed as if he came to accept that. She had convinced him it was him she loved and Harold was just a good friend. If she could just get Seth to accept Harold as her live in lover, then she could have it all. She would have a man to support her and a lover to make her feel wonderful. She just didn't understand how things had gone so badly wrong here.

About twenty minutes after they left the little park they had been talking in Seth pulled up in front of the little apartment Patrice shared with two of the women she worked with. He didn't even turn off the motor. Patrice sat looking at him. Finally Seth clenched his jaw and said, "Get out. Get out of my truck and get you cheating ass out of my sight bitch. I can't believe you think I'll put up with you cheating on me with some asshole and even let him live with us while you are doing it. Just get your ass out of my truck and out of my sight."

Patrice felt a jolt of surprise that Seth would speak to her in that manner. After that she felt instant fiery hot anger surge through her body once again. She slammed the door open and began to twist her body to exit the truck. The door bounced back and slammed into her knee as she twisted. Seth heard the crack when it hit Patrice and then her instant scream of pain. While she was writhing in pain he grabbed her left hand and pulled the engagement ring form her finger. After that he sat and glared at her until she quit moaning about the pain. Then he said, "Now, get out of my truck and out of my sight."

Patrice pushed the door open again and slid to the ground. Her knee almost gave out from the pain. She caught herself by holding onto the door to keep from falling. She snarled over her shoulder as she hobbled into her house, "You fucking selfish asshole. This isn't over. Not by a long shot."

Seth didn't see the door open when Patrice stepped onto her small porch. Harold stood framed in the door and watched Seth speed away. He then turned his attention to Patrice. He wrapped her in his arms and said, "What was that all about? Where the hell is Seth going? Why didn't he come in?"

Patrice began crying and wrapped her arms around Harold. She said between sniffles, "That asshole wouldn't even consider it. How can he be so damn selfish anyway? I TOLD him I loved him and we wanted to marry him. I even told him about the wonderful honeymoon we have planned. He wouldn't even listen to me. I never got to tell him about the rest of the plan."

Harold helped Patrice into the house and to her bedroom. She barely noticed Timmie, one of her roommates' fiancé sitting with tears running down his cheeks while he watched his fiancée get fucked by her Bull. She was hooked up with one of Harold's friends from their old High School football team as her Bull now. She constantly screamed out how large his cock was and how fantastic he made her feel while he fucked her. When they got to Patrice's room Harold laid her on her bed and stood. She lay staring up at him with tears still running down her cheeks. Harold didn't say anything else to her. He reached down and unfastened his belt, unsnapped his pants, lowered the zipper and pushed his jeans down to his knees.

Harold sat on the bed and finished taking off his pants. He turned to Patrice and grabbed her ankles. As he knelt on the bed he moved her legs apart. He crawled between her splayed legs and flipped her skirt up to her waist. She was not wearing panties. Harold smiled and crawled forward. Patrice was still crying from her anger and the pain in her knee. She tried to close her legs and whimpered, "No. Please Harold. I don't feel like it right now."

"Well that's too bad bitch. I'm your Bull and you know you promised me pussy when you got back from your talk with Seth. Why the hell did you think I was waiting here anyway? I really ought to whip your ass for not getting him in here to watch and clean your dirty pussy tonight but I won't this time."

Harold moved farther forward and used his hand to position his cock at the opening of Patrice's cunt. She was damp but far from well lubricated when he lunged forward. He was fully seated in her tight pussy after three hard thrusts. Harold ignored her scream of pain at the brutal insertion. He hooked his arms behind her hip bones and began thrusting into Patrice's pussy. He slammed as deeply into her as he could as hard as he could. Patrice let out a grunt every time Harold slammed into her. He smiled to himself. He thought, 'I'm showing this bitch what it's like to be fucked by a real man. He looked down at her chest. Even under her top he could see her breasts moving back and forth as he fucked her. He smiled while he watched and listened to her whimper. God how he loved to listen to his little bitches whimper while he fucked them. The only thing that could have been better would have been if her little wimpy boyfriend was sitting in the chair beside the bed watching in defeat like Timmie was in the living room. Harold decided as soon as he was finished with the cunt he would look good ole Seth up and teach him his place in life once and for all. He had worked on Patrice too long to let Seth get away from him. Without the money that Patrice had been providing him from Seth he would have to tighten his belt. His other two Cuckolds couldn't make up for the loss of Seth's income. That was one reason he had worked so hard getting Patrice to buy into the cuckold lifestyle. The other reason was he really wanted to hurt that asshole Seth. He had been the big man in their graduating class and Harold still resented that.

Patrice was still crying when Harold felt the cum rising in his balls. She was getting wetter as he thrust. He felt her begin to move with him. Her whimpers of pain were beginning to sound more like pleasure. Harold felt her heels lock behind his thighs and pull him tighter into her little puss. Harold grinned down at her. He held her hips a little tighter and began fucking her faster and harder. He felt his cock tighten. The pleasure became intense. Harold slammed into Patrice one final time and roared his pleasure as cum surged out of his cock and filled her pussy with his seed. As soon as he finished Cumming he pulled from her. He kneeled and used her skirt to wipe his cock clean.

When Harold stood Patrice reached for him and said, "Please don't leave me like this Harold. I didn't cum yet. Please come and finish me off."

"No way slut. You didn't get your little cuck boy in here tonight. Now I have to go talk to him. You can just finish yourself off or wait for me to get back. You'd better be here when I get back and you'd better be ready for more cock. I'm going to drag that little asshole back here and make him watch me fuck you then we're going to make sure he knows his place in this relationship."

Now Harold wasn't the brightest light in the building. Many would say he was about 26 cards shy of a full deck. What he did next proved that point. He drove over to Seth's parent's house. When he saw Seth's truck parked in the driveway he pulled in behind it. Harold walked to the door still seething in anger over what he considered to be Seth's disrespect for him. How dare the little cuck thwart his plans and refuse to rent their apartment and marry Patrice.

Harold didn't even think about what he was doing. When he got to the front door he tried the knob. The door opened. He walked into the house. Seth's parents were still in the living room watching TV. When Harold came through the door Seth's father looked up and said, "What the hell are you doing in my house? And who the hell are you? Get out before I call the police."

Harold glared over at the man and said, "Shut up old man. This doesn't concern you. I'm here to teach Seth a lesson." Harold saw a hallway and walked down it. He threw open every door he came to hunting Seth. When he wasn't in the main part of the house he returned to the living room. He turned toward the kitchen, ignoring the older Connors once again. As he walked he yelled, "Where the hell is that little son of a bitch?"

When Harold entered the kitchen he saw the stairs leading up to the room over the garage and stomped up them. He didn't even try the knob when he got to the door. He slammed against it and forced it open. He stomped across the small living area until he found Seth's bedroom. Seth was already in bed but the noise had awakened him. He threw the covers back as Harold came into his room. Harold ran up to the bed and slammed his large fist into Seth's face. Seth fell back onto the bed and rolled off the other side.

Seth staggered to his feet and met Harold as he came around the foot of the bed. Harold threw another fist at Seth as he yelled, "You son of a bitch. I'm going to beat your ass within an inch of your life then you're coming back to Patrice's place and watch me fuck her like a cuck is supposed to do. You have to learn your place in this relationship. You were a total asshole in school and caused me a lot of trouble but now it's my turn. Patrice told you what you were supposed to do and I expect you to do it."

Seth ducked back and Harold's punch missed. Harold lost his balance and Seth struck. He caught Harold a glancing blow on his cheek. Harold stopped moving for a moment and Seth kicked out catching Harold in the crotch. He screamed and bent forward. Seth pushed down on the back of Harold's head and brought his knee up to meet the rapidly moving head. Harold's nose crunched onto Seth's knee and he let out a keening scream. Seth moved to Harold and kicked him as hard as he could in the ribs and stomach area. Harold threw up on the floor.

Seth was trying to decide what to do next when he heard sirens in the distance. He left Harold where he lay and moved down the stairs into the main part of the house. He found his mother crying and holding onto his father.

About that time the police arrived at the still open door. They saw Seth standing beside his parent's and assumed he was the intruder they had been called to apprehend. He moved rapidly into the room. The officer said, "On the floor asshole."

Seth looked up in surprise and just stood there. The officer moved to him and grabbed him trying to force him down. Finally his mother said, "No, that's my son. He didn't do this. It was another man."

That woke Seth up and he finally got his brain working again. He said, "Officer it was Harold Pittman that did this. He broke into my apartment over the garage and attacked me. When I left to come down here he was laying in the floor upstairs. Come on, I'll show you."

Seth and the officer arrived just as a slowly moving Harold was trying to come back down the stairs into the main part of the house. Had he taken the back stairs out of the apartment into the back yard he might have gotten away. He stood staring at the officer when he came face to face with them. When the officer began putting hand cuffs on him though he resisted. Finally Harold was cuffed and led from the house. Most of the rest of the night was spent giving statements to the officers and agreeing to press charges against Harold.

Of course Harold's story differed drastically from the one told by the Connors. He maintained he had been invited into the house then they had attacked him. Even the prosecutor was unsure of the circumstances because the front door showed no sign of forced entry. Harold maintained he had been a guest and that the Connors wanted him to be their Bull, that it was all a sick sexual game. Patrice and her friends testified that Seth had been trying to force her into the same arrangement because his parents had one like that and he thought the cuckold lifestyle sounded exciting.

The whole court case became a he said, she said circumstantial case. In the end Harold was acquitted of any crime against the Connors. He was sentenced to time served for resisting arrest. As soon as the court case was over Harold, Patrice and her friends began spreading rumors about Seth and his deviant sexual practices. Finally Seth had enough. He had been arrested twice for brawling when he took exception to comments people made to him about his alleged desire to become a cuckold. One evening Seth entered his parent's part of the house and said, "Mom, Dad I've had enough of this crap. It's been almost seven months since Harold and Patrice tried to mess with us and things are just getting worse. I'm leaving town. I don't have a great job here anyway. I think I'll just go out to that little place grandpa left me in Colorado and stay a while. I'll try to find some kind of work out there to get by on at least until this crap blows over. If I stay here I'm going to end up in serious trouble when I take one of the assholes out."

Seth went to work the next day and gave his two week notice. His employer didn't even try to talk him into staying. In fact, his supervisor, when told Seth had quit, said, "Good riddance. We really didn't need your kind working here anyway. The employer told Seth to not bother coming back the next day. He offered to pay him through the end of the week if he would just leave and not bother them any longer. It took Seth three days to get ready to leave town. Early on a Saturday morning Seth sorrowfully hugged his mother and father good bye and departed headed for his new life on his little 640 acre plot of ground in Colorado. His old truck was loaded with his bed a comfortable chair, his clothes and a few pots, pans and other dishes. He just hoped one of the old buildings on the place was still in good enough shape he could stay in it. It had been almost six years since he or his parent's had been there so he really didn't expect too much.

Seth's land was located between Silverton and Telluride Colorado back in the mountains. It had a small mining settlement and an abandoned gold mine on it. No one lived in the little settlement and it showed on the maps as a ghost town. Seth had loved the place when he and his parents visited during his childhood. He was looking forward to rebuilding his life there. It was early enough in the spring he hoped he could plant a small garden to supplement his food supply. He also planned to hunt and fish for much of his meat.

After collecting his final pay, paying his final bills and selling the possessions he wasn't taking with him he had almost $2700.00 in cash. That would have to last him until he found work.

When Seth arrived at the narrow trail up to his place he stopped his truck. He was shocked at the mess he saw. The trail was washed out and almost impassable. There were rocks and deep ditches through it as far as he could see. Nothing but a 4 wheel drive vehicle could possibly make it up the trail. It was in such bad shape he worried about his truck making it. One of the first jobs he would have to do was improve the trail somewhat. He didn't want it to look too inviting however. He could do without company.

Seth walked almost a half mile up the trail throwing sticks and down trees out of the trail and putting rocks in the worst of the ditches. He was finally within sight of his little ghost town. He hoped he had improved the trail enough he could get his truck to his new home. He returned to his truck and began the nearly three quarter mile drive up into the mountains to his land. The town was almost exactly in the middle of his section of land but the trail twisted enough it was almost three fourths of a mile drive. Seth placed the gearbox in 4X4 LO range and took off in low gear. He was moving so slowly the speedometer barely moved off the zero mark. The old truck was bouncing and rocking almost enough to throw him out. Every so often he would stop and work again on the worst of the ditches to make the road marginally passable so he could move on.

Finally Seth arrived at the mine site. He stopped his truck and surveyed his new home. Most of the buildings had fallen down or the roof had collapsed. The shelter over the mine shaft was still standing. The machine shop and mine office appeared to be standing still and to his surprise their roofs appeared to be in place. He wouldn't assume they were watertight however. A couple of the other smaller buildings seemed to be more or less in one piece also.

Seth pulled his truck up as close to the covered mine shaft as he could and stopped. He was about 25 feet from the mine office. It was almost noon so he quickly fixed himself a sandwich. Seth began walking around the area while he ate his sandwich and drank a bottle of water. No, he didn't waste money on store bought water. He had several old milk jugs he filled with water to bring with him. He had no idea if the water coming from the stream beside the mine was safe to drink. One of the things he had to do was get it tested or buy filters to filter his drinking water. Until he did that he would have to boil it for safety.

Seth walked up the stream to where the penstock came out heading toward the mine. He saw it was blocked off and moved the mechanism to see if he could still open it. He finally managed to break the gears loose and watched as water flowed into the diversion. This had been the water used to clean the ore years ago and also to run a small generator for what electricity the mine used. To his surprise there were minimal leaks in the pipe. He closed the gate once again and followed the pipe toward the mine.

When he came to the small generator he tried to turn the water wheel to turn it. It appeared to be frozen. Seth didn't know if the metal was just rusted together or if the generator itself was seized up. Either way he had some work to do before he had power. If the generator itself was bad he probably didn't have enough money to repair it.

Seth moved on down the hill to the outlaying buildings. As he suspected most of them were beyond repair. One building, the old general store and bar was still in marginal shape. To his surprise he could even see some shelves and other items inside it. He didn't try to open the door when he found it to be locked. That could come later. Seth moved on to the machine shop next. It was located beside the flume and generator building.

When Seth came to the machine shop he did force it open. It was a large building, perhaps the size of a basketball court. To Seth's surprise it was filled with machines. There were lathes, welders, torches and other metal working tools. In the rear of the building was something almost priceless to Seth. There was a D3 Cat dozer sitting just inside a garage bay. There were some other pieces equipment but he didn't know what they might be. Oh, some of them were obviously mining gear. There were winches, buckets, ore carts and so forth. There was a huge amount of steel beams, pipes and girders as well as some steel plate stacked inside too.

After Seth's quick journey of exploration he decided he could obtain some quick cash from selling scrap steel if he absolutely had to. Of course that assumed he could clean up the road enough to get it out. Next Seth moved on to the one remaining building—the office. To his surprise he found it to be in excellent shape. Of course it had been the building his family had used when they came on their last trip. It had been kept in better repair because they used it when they visited the site. Seth backed his truck up to the small porch and unloaded his bed and other possessions. He would live it this building for a while.

Seth next turned his attention to the old mine. He hoped there would be something in it that would be saleable. Of course, like many, he had gold fever. He dreamed of finding gold inside but he knew there were only two chances of that--slim and none. Seth had done some research on the internet before he left home. He knew the mining technology used in the fifties and sixties when the mine was closed were not as good as today's. Most mines left recoverable amounts of gold in the tailings during those days. He had done some research on recovering that gold. As far as he could tell he could not afford the technology to reprocess the tailings even if he had the knowledge to do it.

Seth opened the gate to the mine shaft and carefully began exploring. He was careful, very careful. This was an old shaft and weak in many places therefore very dangerous. Just inside the mine Seth found more ore carts and hand tools. There were even several kerosene lanterns and helmets. He put on one of the helmets and shook several of the lamps. Some of them even had some kerosene in them. He poured the kerosene together into one lamp and found a good wick. He lit the lamp and had light. Off he moved to see what he could discover.

After almost two hours Seth exited the mine. The sun was going down and he was tired. He got his soap and went to the stream for a quick COLD bath. When he returned to the office he made another sandwich had some chips and a can of pork and beans for supper. Seth sat on the porch relaxing and making plans for the next few days. He decided his first priority was to patch the holes in the penstock and flume then try to get the generator running. He had an old small apartment size refrigerator he could use if he could get power. After that he would try and get the dozer working so he could plow a spot for a garden then he would clean up his road somewhat so he could get out easier.

The next five days were long and hard. Seth worked from sunrise to sunset. He tore the generator apart and cleaned it, greased it and inspected everything he could. He worked almost a whole day getting the metal gears unfrozen so the water wheel would turn the generator. He repaired the wiring from the generator to the office building. Early the sixth morning Seth walked up the mountain to the gate on the penstock. He opened the gate and watched the water from the stream flow down the sluice and into the penstock. There were still a few small leaks but he was pleased with the job he had done on it.

Next Seth moved to the waterwheel. He opened the diversion and watched as the water fell on the wheel. It began to turn and the generator turned with it. Revolutions built up, there was a slight hum. The lights in the office flickered to a dim orange glow. Seth smiled and yelled pumping his fist in the air. He had power. He rapidly moved to the office and picked up an ancient volt meter to test the voltage he had. Seth hissed yes once again when the meter showed about 113 volts. He was in business. Seth plugged his refrigerator in and let it begin cooling down. He sat and rested for a moment then moved to the shop and his next project—the dozer.

He opened the large door into the shop and looked around. There were a few electric outlets and a half dozen lights. Seth began checking the wiring in preparation for connecting the shop to the generator. That took a couple of hours but about noon he had power to part of the shop and the lights came on. Now he could work on his dozer.

Seth checked the oil and fuel. The dozer was dry. There was no fuel and no oil in the engine. Whoever had parked it in the building had stored it correctly. The battery had been disconnected also. He drove his truck up to the door and got out his jumper cables. He wanted to see if the engine would turn over before he spent any money on batteries, fuel, oil or parts. Of course since his truck was diesel he could always use the fuel in it.

Seth tried to turn the engine by hand. He thought it moved slightly but he wasn't sure. He hooked up the cables and climbed onto the dozer. He hit the switch. Nothing. He got off and looked around. He found a couple of wires mice or rats had chewed in half. He patched them and inspected the dozer once more. He could see nothing else. He climbed up once more and hit the switch. The engine groaned and cycled. He let the key go and smiled. It wasn't frozen. He began making a list of things he needed from town—parts, lubricants, fuel, groceries and so forth. Tomorrow he would go spend some money.

The rest of the day Seth wandered around his little mine exploring and relaxing. He did a few odd jobs but generally speaking he just enjoyed the beautiful spring day. It was early in the season so nights were still cold. Of course this high in the mountains the nights were pretty cool all summer long. Seth went to bed early and rose early. Already he was feeling better physically. He worked long and hard daily and enjoyed the crisp clean mountain air. All he missed was human companionship.

Early the next morning Seth rose and jumped in his truck for the trip to town. He didn't bother eating breakfast. In fact, food was pretty scarce after the long time he had spent in the mountains already. He decided he would have to go hunting and fishing in a day or two. He knew it wasn't hunting season but he would take his chances. It was either that or cut way back on meat and he was a carnivore at heart.

The drive to Telluride was not long in distance but it was long in time. He once again had to drive slowly to get off his property to the poorly maintained dirt road. From there the drive was slow but easier until he got to a better road that took him to Telluride. The town was small but being a tourist town there were stores for most of what he needed. The most trouble he had was finding the batteries and other parts he needed to repair some of the equipment on his place. By the time his shopping trip was completed Seth had spent $457 and change of his meager cash stash.

Seth made it home late mid afternoon. He spent almost an hour just unloading his purchases. He figured he had purchased enough canned and dry food to last at least three weeks. His intention was to go into town no more often than once a month but he knew that would not be possible until he was done repairing things around the place. He wanted to only repair a minimum amount of equipment but he did have to do some repairs.

By the time everything was unloaded and put away Seth was exhausted. He was as tired as if he had worked the full day on his place. Seth made another trip to the stream for a cold bath and turned in at full dusk that evening. Seth had purchased some meat in town so he put off hunting or fishing for a day or two. The next two days he spent working on the dozer. Finally just after noon on the second day he got it started. As far as he knew he had lubricated everything that needed it. He had changed all the fluids and filters. He was ready to go if it would move. During his work on the machine he found the undercarriage was maybe only 25% worn. Even though the machine was an early 1950's manufacture it was in almost new condition.

Seth was grinning like a Cheshire cat when he moved his machine slowly out of the building into the late afternoon sunlight. Seth moved as quickly as the machine would go toward the road and began working on it, smoothing out the holes and ditches. He worked for almost two hours and had almost half the road in good shape before he decided he needed to quit for the day. The light was becoming poor and he was hungry. When Seth returned to the garage and stopped the dozer he looked it over carefully.

Upon his after operation checks Seth found two hydraulic hoses that were leaking. He had been afraid they were too old and rotten to take the pressure of the work. He decided to keep using the dozer the next day and hope they didn't rupture. He didn't want to lose his hydraulic fluid but he also didn't want to make another trip to town this soon.

Seth was within sight of the main road before he decided he needed to stop using the dozer. He didn't want to rupture the hoses and he wanted to leave the first part of the road in poor shape to discourage people from driving down to his place. He walked to the road and looked back toward his place. He couldn't see the road improvements. He would just leave the first quarter mile rough and nearly impassable. He would drive slowly when he first turned off the state road into his property.

When Seth got back to his home he stopped the dozer inside the garage once more. He was closing the door when he thought he saw movement inside one of the fallen buildings farthest from the mine. He always carried a pistol for protection from snakes and in the hopes of killing some game for a meal. He moved slowly and carefully out the walk door and toward the building keeping out of sight as much as he could.

When Seth got within sight of the building he stopped and hid while he looked it over carefully. He thought he heard a slight sound, almost a moan coming from within it. Seth moved slowly and carefully toward the building. Finally he came to the side of it and believed he was still unseen. He moved to a window opening and carefully looked inside. There lying on a dirty blanket was an old man. His leg was swollen and bloody. Tending him was an older woman and a younger one. There were three small dirty packs on the floor.

Seth pulled his pistol and held it in sight just inside the window. He said, "Who are you people. What are you doing here?"

The man didn't even move. The two women jumped and looked toward him. The old woman showed defeat and bone deep exhaustion. The younger woman jerked her head toward Seth and clenched her jaw. Her face showed sorrow, fear and resignation. She said, "Can't you just leave us alone? Haven't you done enough to us? Please, just go. We are leaving and won't tell what we know. Who would believe us anyway?"

"I don't know what you're talking about. I do know you're trespassing on my land so I have a right to know who you are and what you're doing here. Do you need a doctor? That man looks like he should be in a hospital not laying here in an old fallen down building."

"NO! No hospitals. We have no money and can't afford doctors. We're just trying to get back to the reservation. Maybe our people will take us in. Can't you please just leave us alone?"

Seth moved farther inside the hut and gently pushed the young woman aside. He reached out and took the bandage off the old man. His leg was badly lacerated and filthy. While he was looking at the wound he heard the young woman's stomach growl. He made his decision and stood rapidly. When he did that both women jumped back and looked scared.

Seth said, "That is a nasty looking wound. Let's take him up to my house. We'll clean it and try to doctor it some."

The two women looked at each other and spoke in a language Seth didn't understand. Finally the young one said, "We don't have much choice do we? You're the one with the gun."

Seth looked surprised and realized he was still holding his pistol. He sheepishly put it back in his holster then leaned down and picked the old man up. He was skin and bone. He would be surprised if he weighed 100 pounds. Seth moved out of the old fallen down building and walked toward his quarters. The two women followed.

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