Red Wedding

The room the three Dogs are staying in is of an adequate accommodation for sleeping in, they are having to sleep on the floor, but it is not uncomfortable.  In the morning they hear the bells toll from the church in the middle of town, chiming in the happiness of the coming festivities.

The three Dogs have a morning discussion of what their plan of action is for the day, and decide to go see Abadiah and may be his son too before the wedding starts.  They walk over to his side of town and find him sat out on his porch, looking out to the distance, over towards where the fields are being harvested, he is sat on his own with no one around him.  The Dogs walk up to Abadiah and give him a morning greeting, finding him busy chewing on some tobacco.

‘Did ye have a nice stay over at Virgil’s?’ the old man questions laced with some sarcasm, Abadiah only now turning to face the Dogs and give them his full attention.  Abadiah agrees with the Dogs that he is a nice man, ‘especially if ye can throw ye self round town with authority’ he adds, he gives his balding thinning head a rub, his fingers going over a scar or two.  Brother Ambrose noticing the few scars on the old man’s face inquires about how he got them, and Abadiah happily tells a tale about one on his cheek, and the time he was a lot young and bringing in the harvest from the fields when the accident happened.  Soon Abadiah comes back to the subject at hand and states that he is concerned for one half of the couple that are getting married today, for Wendy and her parents wishes, asking whether that she wants it too.

Brother Jesse asks after his son, and as he does so a low growl can be heard from the old man as he grinds his teeth, ‘sure he’s doing well, out there in the fields.  Will be there all day, someone has to’, Abadiah looks back over towards the fields.  As they carry on talking with Abadiah he explains to them that the price of food has gone up lately, and that the people who can afford it will still pay, while the others struggle, explaining that the reason given is to be able to keep in with the other towns.

As they can see that he is getting worked up again, like he does with every question them seem to ask him, Brother Jesse asks him if he would be attending the wedding.  Abadiah states that he has not decided if he’ll go or not, ‘there will be food there’ Brother Jesse suggests, ‘I am no beggar!’

A woman in rags can be seen stood near to the side entrance, the second doorway, in to the church, looking at Abadiah and the Dogs.  As the Dogs notice her and look over, she quickly looks down at the floor and focuses on the brown bag within her hands.  After what seems like an age she looks back up to find that they are still looking at her, they acknowledge her and she gives a little curtsy then goes in through the door.

More people are starting to gather near the church now as the time is drawing near, and more color can be seen within their clothes, especially on the women.  The Dogs decided to go and meet with the local steward, so walk over and go in to the church through the main door.

The three Dogs find the steward within the church, busy reading a passage from the Book of Life.  They greet and introduce each other, introducing himself as Bill, he was up until recently an assistance to the then steward Wyatt, explaining that he didn’t expect him to pass away so easily, that this will be his first time.  Bill explains to them that he is glad that the three Dogs are here in town at this time, and asks them if they would be willing to help out where they can, asking them who they think should lead the ceremony, and Brother Jesse suggest that the steward Bill should do the honors.

The bells in the church ring out, summoning all to the joining ceremony.  After everyone has entered the Dogs spot Abadiah sneak in at the end at sit right at the back near the door, slumped there in his normal clothes.  Cornelius is very smartly dressed with a walking cane in hand, he goes up to Virgil and thanks him shaking his hand, then to each of the Dogs thanking them for their presence, then he goes off and kneels next to an elderly couple at the front.  The elderly couple is the parents to the bride, and the man seems to keep his gaze on a gem on the breast pocket of Cornelius’ coat.  The steward Bill looks over to the Dogs checking if to proceed now or not, and they nod their approval.

From the back of the church, Wendy the bride steps in wearing a long white flowing dress, still with her beautiful white hat on her head that she was wearing yesterday, she looks at each of the Dogs in turn.  Bill asks for the Dogs to individually give their blessing to the ceremony, which they do and the ceremony continues with Bill reading from the Book of Life.

Wendy is standing there and she is starting to look very flush and weak, Ambrose looks over at the nurse, the woman they saw earlier outside the church with the brown bag, indicating with his head and eyes if Wendy is okay.  Wendy soon begins to look worse and Ambrose nods his head for the nurse to do something, and with this Cornelius sees what is happening and starts to get worried, the nurse Bethia rushes over to Wendy just as she begins to collapse grasping at Ambrose as she slides to the floor gagging, Bethia checks Wendy seeing some blood start to form on Wendy’s dress near the pelvic area, and with this Bethia looks up at the Dogs and tells them that the others, looking around at the congregation, should not be here to see this.

Brother Jesse turns to the flock holding his Book of Life before him, and asking them that it would be a good idea if they all left and waited outside for now, but they do not pay much attention to him as they all look on at Wendy and the nurse Bethia, Brother Joshua puts his fingers to his mouth and gives off a sharp whistle, getting the crowd’s attention, while Brother Ambrose instructs Cornelius that they need to leave because Wendy is ill.  With all that is going on, Cornelius begins to lose it and starts raising his voice demanding what is wrong, not moving nor are the rest of the followers making any attempt at leaving.  Seeing this happening, Brother Jesse turns towards Cornelius and pulls out a metallic looking object from his coat and slips it over his knuckles, and with a low growl so only Cornelius can hear, but all can see, he tells him that he really should leave here immediately.  The crowd seems to be getting more worked up and not making any moves towards the door, so Brother Joshua picks up his rifle that was resting against a wall.

The congregation seems to be directing their anger towards Brother Ambrose, and he does his best to calm the crowd down and get them to leave, and as things become very heated he gets them to follow him and take it outside.  With the remaining crowd Brother Jesse turns back to them and shows that he is calm, taking off the metal object from his knuckles and straightening his coat, and calmly asks them to please leave gesturing towards the second door at the side, then walks over to the door and opens it.  The rest of the flock finally leave the church, and all that is left within is Brothers Jesse and Joshua, Bethia and Wendy, and Cornelius who now bows his head in shame and apologies to Brother Jesse as he leaves.  After Cornelius has left Brother Jesse storm out of the door and slams it shut behind him muttering something under his breath.

Brother Joshua is left alone within the church with Wendy and nurse Bethia, ‘I know it is a sin to be pregnant before your married, but can you please ask the King of Life forgiveness for Wendy because she is pregnant’, Bethia pleads to Brother Joshua, ‘otherwise I think we are going to lose her’.  Kneeling beside Wendy, Brother Joshua starts to pray for Wendy and her unborn child.  Bethia keeping a check on Wendy and her poor condition.   After some time Brother Joshua finishes his pray and stands up, Bethia carries on mopping Wendy’s brow and checking her vitals, ‘its a miracle, she is going to live’ Bethia looks up at Brother Joshua, ‘we are going to need to take her to my room’, Brother Joshua bends and picks up Wendy in his arms and carries her to Bethia’s room within the church.  Once inside Bethia tells Brother Joshua that they will need someone to keep an eye on the door, and to not let anyone see within while she nurses Wendy back to health,  Brother Joshua volunteers and leaves to find the other two Dogs to tell them the situation.

Brother Joshua comes upon Abadiah outside and finds him angry, saying about how the dowry should have been given before the ceremony, so that they could have eaten before, a guy can be seen with an urge to punch him but Virgil holds and calms him down.  Joshua sits down outside the door to the church, and Abadiah comes over to him and asks after Wendy, wanting to know how she feels, stating he had a wife who did that, looking questionably at Brother Joshua, ‘I know Dogs don’t lie’ he states.  Then Abadiah walks off telling Brother Joshua that he is going to help out in the fields with his son.

Brothers Ambrose and Jesse find Brother Joshua and they return back within the church.  Steward Bill is found inside busy cleaning up and stating that they are all such a good flock usually, ‘please do not punish them’, and Brother Joshua suggests that the steward should make himself seen by the community, and to go around reassuring them.  After he leaves Brother Joshua informs the other two Dogs about Wendy’s condition and what has and will happen, and the fact that he will be guarding the room for now, they then discuss what their next plan of action should be.

While Brothers Ambrose and Jesse walk off towards the fields, Brother Joshua settles himself outside the church door looking around him, he spots Wendy’s parents Emily and Clayton over at the food store, with Emily pleading at the closed door, asking if Cornelius is there, saying that they told him that Wendy looked ill, and why he had held back, her husband Clayton trying his best to calm her down.  But no answer or response comes from the store, and Joshua looks on.

Out in the fields Ambrose and Jesse come across Abadiah bailing, while a young man who is stripped to the waist, his skin looking sun burned, his body thin and wiry, as spotted them and is quickly putting on a top over his sweaty body.  The Dogs approach the young man, asking him if he is Joss and wanting to asking him some questions, he replies that he is and that his father had told him that they would be along soon, he looks and sounds agitated and asks if he can have some time on own, they nod and he walks away from everyone to stand on his own.  Joss pulls a shiny silver coin from his pocket and absent-mindedly flicks it up in the air and catches it before flicking it again, as he kicks and scuffs at the dirt, looking as if he is going to cuss and swear to himself.

After a short while he walks back over to the Dogs and answers their questions, openly showing his anger at Cornelius, and how he has a hold over everyone with his food supply, all the crops go to him to sell to other towns while he doesn’t give much back to the people.  And obvious to the Dogs that Joss has strong feelings for Wendy who he has been a very good friend for a long time.  After the questions he asks if the Dogs could take his father back to town with them, showing a deep concern for his parent.

Brother Ambrose asks Abadiah to go back to town and offers that he will stay behind and help out with the harvest, Abadiah knowing that his son had asked them to get him back to town, Brother Jesse reassuring him that his son has his best intentions to mind.  So Abadiah walks back to town with Brother Jesse, while Brother Ambrose stays with Joss helping him with the crops.


2 thoughts on “Red Wedding

  1. This would make an effective short western film.
    A lack of violence with a easy to follow story.

    I like the use of american color-gives it atmosphere!

    Nicely written account.

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