Design a site like this with
Get started

The Legend and the Gun by Nancy Marie

Word Count 15,635

I don’t own them. I’m just taking them out for some fun. All original characters belong to their rightful owner, all others belong to me, and may not be used without my permission.

This story is Rated NC – 17 for language, violence, adult content, and prison torture.


Johnny Madrid Lancer
Scott Lancer
Murdoch Lancer
Jessie Madrid
Kyle Madrid
Stella – Brothel owner
Marcy – soiled dove
Dakota – soiled dove
Puerto Peñasco Prison
Father Jacob – Atil, Sonora, Mexico
Mission Santa Teresa de Atil, Atil, Sonora, Mexico
Mission San Francisco de Asis / St. Francis of Assisi
Sister Francis
Sister Mary
Mother Emaline
Andrade – General
Arago – Major
Vasquez – Sergeant
Madera – Captain
Huerta – Rurale
Estrada – Rurale
Vargas – Rurale


Johnny stood looking thru blurry eyes out his window as tears ran down his cheeks. A letter lay  on the table from Father Jacob. Five years ago he had everything he wanted until one morning when he woke up and found it all gone. He was glad Scott had gone to San Francisco, because leaving with him here would be harder. Sighing, he went downstairs to a confrontation he knew would not be good.

” I thought you went to bed son. ”

” I need to talk to you about something. ” he said . ” Something has come up, and I have to leave for about four months. ”

” Leave, and go where? ” Murdoch asked.

” It’s personal Murdoch. ”

” Son please. ”

” I said it’s personal Murdoch. ” Johnny said. ” Look something has happened, and I have to go. ”

” I forbid you going. ”

Johnny laughed slightly as he shook his head. ” You forbid me from going, yet it was alright for Scott to take off for a month to go to San Francisco to see his grandfather….Look, like it or not, I have to go. ”

” You have a responsibility to this ranch. ”

” I’m sorry Murdoch, but I have to leave. I promise you I will be back. ” Johnny said before going back upstairs. A short time later he came back downstairs with his bedroll, rifle, and saddlebags.

” Look, I’m sorry this happened Murdoch. ”

” Then wait until your brother comes back from San Francisco. Let him go with you. ”

” I can’t wait. Scott won’t be back for a month. ” Johnny said.

” Son, does this have something to do with whoever you have been writing to in Mexico ? ”

” I’m sorry Murdoch, but I can’t tell you anything. I’ll explain everything when I get back. ” Johnny said. ” I’m not taking Barranca. I don’t want him ending up in cruel hands if I don’t make it back. ”

” I know what that horse means to you son.  We’ll take good care of him for you. ” Murdoch said as he walked over to him, and extended his hand.

Johnny set his rifle down, took his fathers hand in his, and pulled him into a hug. ” Please don’t worry about me. Tell Boston I’ll be back in four months. ”

” I’ll expect you in the fall son. You take care of yourself. ”


Scott walked into the great room to find his father at his desk looking at a map of Lancer. ” Johnny out working? ”

” Scott, I didn’t hear you come in son. Welcome home. ”

” Thanks. Where’s Johnny, I brought him something I think he will like. ”

” He’s gone. ”

” Gone! Gone where? ”

” I don’t know. ”

” What happened? ”

” I don’t know. He got a letter from someone a week after you left, who it was from I don’t know. He said he made a promise four years ago before he came here, and now has to honor that promise. ”

Scott couldn’t believe what he was hearing. He couldn’t believe his little brother left his home to go back to Mexico. ” You never seen the letter? ”

” No, he picked up the mail. There was a letter from whoever he’s been talking to. ”

” Did you ask the Widow Grayson if she remembers the letter? ” Scott asked. ” You know that woman likes to know everybody’s business. ”

” No. I’ve been going thru the Pinkerton reports trying to find anything. He said everything would be explained when he gets back in four months. ”


Johnny rode into the small town of Delano two weeks after leaving Lancer, tired, cold, and hungry. After taking care of his horse, he walked to the only cafe open for something to eat. Sitting in the corner, he finished eating a big steak and potato’s.

” You must have been hungry to eat all that food. You want some more coffee? ” she asked.

” Yeah, thanks. ” Johnny said. ” Pretty quiet tonight. Where’s all your customers? ”

” The saloon or home. It’s almost eleven, and I close at nine. ”

” I’m sorry ma’am. Let me get out of here so you can close up and go home. ”

” I’m already closed, as for going home, I live upstairs. ” she said as she sat down. ” You looked cold and hungry is why I didn’t run you off. ”

” You got an old man? ”

” I did up until three years ago when he decided to up and leave me two years ago. ” she said. ” I got a job here, and bought the place a couple months ago. ”

” You’re a good cook. ” Johnny said as he stood up.

” How long you in town for? ” she asked.

” Day or so to give my horse a rest, and sleep in a bed. ” he responded. ” How much do I owe you for the meal? ”

” Six bits. You got a room at the hotel? ”

” Not yet. ”

” I got a big bathtub upstairs and a real comfortable, soft bed. ”

Johnny could tell the woman was lonely for a man. ” I wouldn’t want people to talk ma’am. ”

” Names Rose, and I don’t care if they do talk. ”she said as she stepped closer to him. ” A woman has needs, and gets lonely. You know what I mean? ”

” Yeah, I do. ” Johnny said as he paid for the meal. ” But what you’re offering me isn’t what I’m wanting tonight ma’am. I’m sorry. ”

” Well, a good looking man like you comes along…….I’m sorry. ” Rose said as tears ran down her cheeks. Turning, she went into the kitchen.

Johnny didn’t want female company tonight, he was too tired. Walking over to the kitchen door, he could see Rose was crying. ” Rose. ”

” Please, just go. I’ve made a fool of myself. Just go. ”

” I’m sorry Rose. ” Johnny said before turning, and leaving the cafe.


” Where have you been ? ”

” I rode into town to try and find out where the letters have been coming from. ” Scott said.” She remembered the letters. She said they come from Atil, Sonora, Mexico.” Scott said.

” You say Atil, Sonora, Mexico? ” Murdoch asked.

” That’s what she said. Why? ”

” The last report I got from the Pinkerton mentions a Mission Santa Teresa de Atil, and a Father Jacob. ”

” Does it say anything about this Father Jacob? ” Scott asked.

Murdoch looked back thru the papers. ” He was at the orphanage where Johnny was kept. ”

” That doesn’t make sense. Why would Johnny risk going back to Mexico for a man who abused him as a child. ” Scott asked.

” He’s not the one who abused him. ” Murdoch said. ” Johnny was sent to the orphanage San Francisco de Asis, also known as St. Francis of Assisi. It was run by a Father Thomas. ”

” I’ll ride into town tomorrow and send a wire to this Father Jacob. ” Murdoch said.

” And say what? ”

” I’ll tell him who I am, and ask him if Johnny is coming there. ”

” You send a wire asking about Johnny Madrid, it could get to the wrong person. ”

” I’m sure your brother has told him about us. He’s been writing to the mission since shortly after he got here. ”

”I’m going to go get cleaned up before supper. ”


( flashback, and adult content )

Johnny laid back against his saddle with a cup of coffee resting on his stomach. It had been three weeks since he left Lancer. Closing his eyes, he let his mind wander back to the day he rode up to Mission Atil, and took the only woman he ever really loved away from the orphanage.

” You cannot do this. ” Father Thomas pleaded. ” You are the spawn of the devil. God will punish you for this. ”

” Don’t you mean you will father? You beat and starved us for all those years. ” Madrid said. ” I’m taking her away from here. ”

Father Thomas grabbed Jessie by the arm. ” She is not leaving here. ”

Johnny pulled his colt and aimed it at Father Thomas. ” Let go of her arm! ” he ordered as he cocked the colt.

Jessie stayed with Johnny, avoiding towns as much as they could until the first time they came together, it was her sixteenth birthday, and he was seventeen, and knew how to pleasure a woman from the whores he had been visiting the last three years.

” Jess, I want you to make me a promise that if we ever get separated, you will go to a mission in Atil, Sonora, Mexico. There’s a Mission there called Santa Teresa de Atil. Talk to a Father Jacob. You can trust him. He’s helped me before. ”

” I don’t plan on losing you, but I promise. ” she said.

Johnny had feelings for Jesse, but until now had kept those feelings to himself. Seeing a storm brewing to the west, they stopped for the night at an abandoned miners shack. Dismounting, he walked over to help her down from her horse. When she slid down, she wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him, touching his bottom lip with her tongue before going inside.

Johnny stood there watching her go inside as lightening flashed in the distance. For several months he had wanted to make Jessie his by taking her innocence. Numerous times he had walked off into the dark at night when she was sound asleep to relieve his wants by using his hand. Unsaddling the horses, he walked around to the back of the shack, and quickly used his hand to satisfy himself. The first whore he had ever been with when only thirteen, an older woman named Stella, showed him how he could last much longer before climaxing. When finished, he walked back over to check the horses before heading into the shack.

Jessie knew what she wanted for her birthday, and hoped kissing Johnny would tell him. She had noticed how he looked at her differently, and even watched him a couple times satisfy himself in the dark, saying her name over and over when it happened. Spreading their bedrolls out on the floor, she then removed her clothes, and waited until Johnny came in.

Johnny walked into the shack just as it started raining. Seeing her standing there totally naked, he knew tonight would be the best night of his life. Closing the door, he removed his gunbelt and clothes as fast as he could before he walked over to her.

” It’s my birthday. I want you to make me yours Johnny. ” Jessie said.

Johnny knew since it would be her first time, it would hurt her, and she would bleed. Putting his hand under her chin, he brought his mouth to hers and kissed her softly on the lips. ” I’ve wanted to make you mine for a long time. ”

Jessie wrapped her arms around his neck. ” I know. I’ve seen you in the dark satisfying yourself as you said my name. ” she said. ” Tonight I want you to say my name while you’re inside me. ”

Johnny kissed her again, sliding his tongue deep in her mouth. Running his hands down to her breast, he squeezed, pulled, and pinched the nipples, wanting her, needing her.

Jessie felt her stomach flop before it got tight. Running her hands down, she took him in her hands and started rubbing, and touching him. When Johnny stopped kissing her, she opened her eyes to see him watching what she was doing to him. ” Do you like that? ”

” You have no idea how good that feels. How long I’ve wanted you to touch me. ” he said.

Jessie slowly ran her finger tips up and down his hardness, and around the tip before running her hand down between his legs, massaging him.

Johnny needed to be inside her. To feel her tightness as he pushed his hardness into her, taking her innocence. ”Lay down. ”

Jessie laid down on the blanket, smiling at his hardness now standing out. When he laid down next to her, she laid on her side, and took him in her hand again, wrapping her fingers around his shaft. When his hand covered hers, she thought he was going to stop her, but smiled when he started showing her how to pleasure him.

Closing his eyes, Johnny relished in what Jessie was doing to him. Thrusting his hips upward as his breathing became faster. Letting her work him for several minutes before he stopped her, and rolled her onto her back. Raising up, he ran his left hand down between her legs, touching her mound, making her arch her hips up into his hand.

Jessie ran her hand down, pressing Johnny’s into her mound more as she moved her hips up and down. She didn’t know why her body was responding like it was, but liked the feeling she was having between her legs. When he slid his fingers inside her, touching her insides, making her wetter, her body completely lost control.

” Oh my god Johnny. ” she said as her hands ran up and down her body. ” I feel so different inside. ”

Johnny leaned down and started sucking her breast with hunger as his hand started working faster, slipping a third finger inside her, preparing her as best he could to accept his thickness. After several agonizing minutes, he moved between her legs, spreading them apart as far as he could, he reached down, and guided his tip to her entrance. ” I’m sorry Jessie, it’s going to hurt at first, and you will bleed. ”

Jessie wrapped her legs around his waist, and thrust her hips up into him, trying to get him inside her. ” Johnny….please, I don’t care if it hurts. Let me feel you inside me. ”

Johnny slid into her until he hit the barrier. Claiming her mouth, he made a hard thrust, burying himself all the way inside. Stopping to allow her body to adjust as much as possible to the invasion. Looking down at her, he seen a lone tear escape her left eye. ” I’m sorry. It will get better. ” he said as he started moving in and out of her slowly. Feeling how tight she was, her muscles squeezing on his shaft. Raising up on his arms, he moved in and out of her a little faster with every thrust.

” Look at me Jess. Look at my hardness moving in and out of you. ” Johnny said. ” God I’ve wanted to be inside you for so long. ”

Jess looked down between her legs, watching Johnny make her his.

” Johnny….what’s happening to me? ” she panted as she clung to him.

” Let it go Jess, don’t try and stop it. ” He said as he suddenly slammed into her as fast as he could. He knew she was climaxing when her whole body started to shake, and her muscles got tight around his shaft.

” Johnny….I can’t stop it! ” she yelled.

” Jessie…oh Jessie…I’m….oh my god Jess! ” he yelled as they both exploded together. Johnny pumping his hips as his seed released deep inside her. ” Oh god, now you’re mine! ”

Jessie clung to Johnny, digging her fingernails into his back as her whole body exploded, her juices flowing over his shaft as he released his seed deep inside her. Shaking uncontrollably, she held onto him, feeling his hardness jerking as his seed of life released into her making her his.


That was the first of many times they came together that night, and the next day as the rain came down outside. Johnny knew there would never be another woman he could love the way he loved her. For a year they rode together, growing closer to each other. Making love every night, and sometimes stopping during the day. That was until one morning he woke up to find Jessie had left him during the night, leaving a note saying that because she loved him so much, she had to leave him, and to not look for her. Heartbroken over losing her, Johnny rode out back into Mexico, and joined the fight for independence in the Mexican war until he was captured by Francisco Madera a captain in the Mexican army,  and sent to prison to be executed.

That was five years ago, and a lot had changed for him. Taking the letter out of his pocket, he read it again.


I hope this letter finds you. I am so happy you went home to your father, and now have a proud name. I was asked to write to you if something should ever happen. This may come to you as a shock, and I hope you hold no anger toward me for not telling you sooner, but I like you am a man of my word.  Jessie came to me almost four years ago with a condition she begged me not to tell you about unless something happened to her. You have a son Juanito, and I am sad to say his mother got sick, and passed away three days ago. Your son will remain here waiting for his father to come and get him. Please be careful coming back into Mexico. Captain Madera was very angry when he learned you had escaped execution, and fled Mexico. He has vowed that if he ever captures you again, he would slowly beat, and torture you to death. There are two other Rurales, a Major Santiago Vasquez, and Sergeant Alvaro Obregon. These men have a hate for anyone who fought for independence under Juarez. General Porfirio Diaz they say is soon to be President of Mexico, has promised to hunt down all, and make an example of them to others.

Father Jacob

Putting the letter away, Johnny never thought the reason Jessie left him would be because she was pregnant with his child, a son. Learning that Jessie had died broke his heart. Looking up at the stars, he let the tears fall and cried for the second time in his life for the loss of the woman he loved more than life it’s self.


” Aah Pedro. I did not see you ate my services on Sunday. ”

” I’m sorry father. I will be there Sunday. ” Pedro said.

” What brings you to my church in the middle of the week? ”

” Father Jacob, I have a telegram for you. ” Pedro said as he handed it to him. ” I hope it is not bad news father. ”

” Thank you Pedro. I will see you Sunday. ”

 Father Jacob waited until Pedro left to open the telegram and read it.

Father Jacob, you don’t know me, but you know my son Johnny Lancer. I need to know if my son is headed there to see you.

Murdoch Lancer

” Oh my Juanito. You have said nothing to your father about why you are coming here. ” the father said.


” ¡Capitán Madera, ya viene! ”  ( Captain Madera, he is coming. ) Pedro said.

” ¿Quien viene? ”   ( Who is coming ? )

” Recibí un telegrama de un himbre en California, su padre. ¡Él viene aquí! ”  ( I got a telegram from a man in California, his father. He is coming here. )

” ¿Por qué meimportaría que un himbre de California viniera aquí ? ”  ( Why would I care about a man from California coming here ? )

” ¡Él no, su hijo! ”  ( Not him, his son. )

” Y quién es su hijo, y por qué me importaría ? ”  ( And who is his son, and why would I care ?)

” ¡Porque su hijo Johnny Lancer, su verdadero nombre es Johnny Madrid! ”  (Because his son Johnny Lancer, his real name is Johnny Madrid )

” ¿Estás seguro de esto ? ”  ( Are you sure of this ? )

” Sí. Viene a ver al Padre Jacob. ”  ( Yes. He is coming to see Father Jacob. )

” Gracias. ” ( Thank you. )

Pedro hated betraying the father, but he knew what would happen to his wife if the captain found out he knew Madrid was coming, and said nothing.

” Sargento, no quiero que ningún himbre toque a ese cerdo una vez que cruce la frontera. Que venga aquí y se relaje. Una vez que esté con el Padre Jacob en la iglesia,lo capturaré, y esta vez no se me escapará. ¡Yo personalmente lo llevaré a la prisión de Puerto Peñasco! ”  ( Sergeant, I want no man to touch that swine once he crosses the border. Let him come here, and relax. Once he is with Father Jacob in the church, then I will capture him, and this time he will not get away from me. I will personally take him to Puerto Penasco prison! )

” Me aseguraré de que lo sepan. ¿Se lo vas a decir al mayor ? ” ( I will make sure they know. Are you going to tell the major ? )

” No hasta que sea capturado. ” ( Not until he is captured. )


Johnny made camp for the night in the Chuckwalla Mountains at under a rock outcrop big enough to give him and his horse shelter. Making a small fire, he cooked a rabbit he shot earlier. Once finished, he put the fire out, the full moon would provide enough light if he needed it. Settling down in his sleeping bag, he started wondering about his son, and what he looked like. He didn’t even know the boys name. He guessed him to be about four years old. Around midnight, Johnny was awakened by a noise. Grabbing his rifle, and colt, he stepped back into the darkness, and strapped his gunbelt on, when he heard the sound of a horse approaching. The moon high in the sky above, cast just enough light he could see a good distance as he waited. He didn’t have to wait long for the horse to come into view, favoring his left front leg, the horse stopped, and held the leg up a little. Seeing movement to his right near his horse, he chambered a round in the rifle and fired just as the man spun around, his shot ricocheting off the rock wall just above Johnny’s head. Firing the rifle again, he hit the man, and dropped him as a shot rang out from behind him, the bullet creasing his upper left arm. Spinning around, he fired several shots, hitting the man square in the chest, when he felt a white hot pain in his side, dropping him to the ground, drawing his colt he seen the first man he shot coming toward him, raising up, he fanned the colt, hitting the man several times in the chest. Reloading, he moved into the darkness and listened for any other sounds. After a few minutes he walked over to the body of the man near his horse. He could tell by the smell, the two were desert rats, stealing, and killing anyone they came across. Knowing there would be more of them out there, he saddled his horse as fast as he could. Walking over to the other horse still standing there, he checked the leg and found the animal was lame. Removing the saddle and bridle he patted the horse on the neck. ” You’ll be alright with rest boy. ” he said before mounting up, and heading south. He knew if the two men’s bodies were found, their friends would also use the light of the full moon to track him down.


” Johnny’s been gone over a month. He should be down by the border by now. ” Scott said.

” It depends on the way he went, and if he’s going to the mission in Atil, Sonora. ”

” Still no word from Father Jacob? ”

” No, and I think I know why. ” Murdoch said as he stood up, and walked over to the sideboard. ” Drink? ”

” No thank you. ”

Murdoch poured a shot of brandy, and walked back over to his desk. ” The Rurales. I think I messed up sending that wire to him. I may have put your brother’s life in danger. ”

” How? ” Scott asked.

” They can be very threatening. The man at the telegraph office, he could be just waiting, and tell them Johnny is coming. ”

” They know him as Madrid, not Lancer. ”

” They have cruel ways of finding out things. Johnny was rescued seconds from execution. The Pinkerton agent told him his father was looking for him. He could have used my name in the village. Your brother said he bought his freedom. The Pinkerton agent said the Rurales tried to rob him, and Johnny killed them. I asked him in the wire if my son Johnny Lancer was coming to see him. I was so stupid. ”

” How long are you going to wait ? ” Scott asked.

” Your brother said he would be back in four months. If he’s not, then we will go to Mexico to this mission, and talk to Father Jacob. ”


Johnny walked into the parlor and stopped. ” Hello Stella. ” he said softly.

” Do my eyes deceive me, or do I see Johnny Madrid standing in my parlor? ”

Johnny smiled, took two steps, and collapsed.

” Oh my god! ” she said as she hurried to Johnny. ” He’s been shot. Dakota, Marcy, help me get him up to my room. ” Stella ordered. Sally, go turn my bed down, then go get me some bandages, hot water, and something to remove the bullet. ”

” Stella, he needs a doctor! ” Marcy said.

” That old drunk, I’m not letting him anywhere near Johnny. ” Stella said. ” He’ll run to the Rurales the first chance he could and tell them he’s here. ”

” Why is he here Stella? ” Dakota asked. ” He went home to his family. ”

” I don’t know. Right now lets just worry about saving his life. ” Stella said as Sally came into the room.

” The water is heating. ” Sally said. ” Is he really Johnny Madrid? ”

” Yes, and I don’t want you talking to anyone about him.  The Rurales find out he’s here, they’ll kill him. ” Stella said as she removed his shirt. ” Go back downstairs and get that water. Marcy, take this knife and burn the blade in the lamp so it’s sterile. ”


” How’s he doing? ” Juan asked.

” He’s running a fever. ” Stella said as she wiped his chest down.

” I found his horse out back, and brought his rifle, and saddlebags in. Where do you want I should put these? ”

” Put them in the corner over there, then take his horse to the livery. ” she responded.

” I already did. ” Juan said. ” Will he live? ”

” I don’t know. I hope so. ”

” I seen him once in Yuma, he was so fast. The man called him out, and Madrid stood there trying to talk him out of it. ”

” Honey, I’ve known this kid a long time. ” Stella said as Sally walked into the room.

” Well, I better go get  my chores done. ” Juan said before leaving.

” Whichever one of you girls takes that boys innocence….”

” Something wrong? ”

 ” I was the first woman he ever had. ”

” Who Juan? ” Marcy asked.

” Not Juan, Johnny. ”

” You were his first? ”

” Of many times we came together I was. Every time he came here, which were many times, I would teach him something new, and the next time he came, he would have what I taught him perfected. ” Stella said.

” How old was he? ”

” Juan, one thing I have learned with men over the years, age doesn’t mean you’re experienced. ” Stella said. ” He may have only been thirteen, and I was his first, but let me tell you…..Madrid knew how to fuck. I taught him how to slow down, pleasure his woman, and himself, and make it last. ”

” He was only thirteen? ” Marcy asked.

” The first time I sucked him off, he did a first for me. He remained rock hard, shoved it in me and humped me to the moon and back. I swear he climaxed harder the second time about ten minutes later than he ever had. ” she explained. ” Any woman who gets him in her bed better be ready for a wild ride. ”

” I heard the other girls talking. They were saying he’s built like a stallion. ”

Stella stood up, and lifted the covers up so Marcy could see. ” You tell me. ”

” Oh my, I would love to have a man with one that size. The ones we get climbed between our legs, hump us a few minutes and are done. ”

” He takes his time, and makes sure the woman he’s with enjoys it. ”


” Madrid está en Sasabe. ” ( Madrid is in Sasabe. ) Sergeant Vasquez said.

” ¿Donde ? ” ( Where? ) Captain Madera asked.

” El prostíbulo. Llegó allí el domingo pasado. ” ( The whorehouse. He arrived there last Sunday. )

” Pasar una semana con una puta. ” ( Spending a week with a whore? )

” Le dispararon. Rurale Huerta dijo que lo vio entrar y su costado y brazo izquierdo estaban cubiertos de sangre. ” ( He was shot. Rurale Huerta said he seen him come in and his side, and left arm were covered in blood.)

” Así que alguien tuvo la suerte de poner dos balas en ese cerdo. Dile a Huerta que vigile el lugar, pero mantente alejado.  ” ( So someone got lucky enough to put two bullets in that swine. Tell Huerta to keep an eye on the place, but stay away.)

                                                                                         Chapter 2

” Stella, you need to get some rest. ” Dakota said. ” You can’t keep going like you are. I’ll stay with him. ”

” I’m fine. I’ve been getting sleep. ” Stella said as she stood up. ” Is everything going alright downstairs? ”

” Only been four customers all week. ” she responded.

” Yeah, it’s getting hard to make a living in this damn town. ” Stella said as she stood up, and walked over to the window.

” Maybe we should think about moving. Tucson, Phoenix, Yuma, even Tombstone are growing. ”

” Those god fearin women who go around……..”

” Stella! ”

Stella turned around. Looking at the bed, she found a pair of blue eyes looking back at her. Walking over to the bed , she sat down next to Johnny.

” Stella. ” Johnny said softly.

Stella placed her right hand against the left side of Johnny’s face. ” It’s about time you let me see those blue eyes kid. ” she said as a tear ran down her cheek.

” How long? ” he asked.

” You’ve been here just over a week. ” she said.

” Sorry, had no place else to go. ”

” You know you can always come here. ” she said. ” Who shot you ? ”

” Desert rats. They tried to steal my horse. ”

” How long ago was that ? ”

” Three days. ”


”  Who’s Jessie ? ” Stella asked a week later.

Johnny looked at her.

” The only reason I ask is you kept saying her name when you had a fever. ”

Johnny looked down at his hands. ” Someone I once loved. ”

” You must have loved her very much ? ” Stella said.

” She was at the orphanage with me. I ran away as you know, but couldn’t stop thinking about her, so I went back, and took her away from there. We rode together for over a year. ” he explained. ” On her sixteenth birthday I took her innocence. She made me feel alive every time we came together. She made me feel like you did when we made love. I woke up one morning to find her gone, and a note telling me she left me because she loved me, and to not look for her. That’s when I joined the fight with Benito Juarez for the freedom of Mexico. I got captured after seven months, and was seconds away from being executed when a Pinkerton man came up in a wagon, and bought my freedom. He said my father wanted to see me, and had been looking for me ever since my mother left when I was a baby. That’s where I’ve been the last four years until I got a letter from Father Jacob. ”

” Father Jacob? ”

” Jessie left me because she was pregnant. She died a couple months ago, and left…..I have a son. ”

” That’s why you’re here ? ”

” He’s at the mission in Atil. ”

” You’re going to go into Mexico knowing the Rurales will kill you ? ”

” I have to Stella. I don’t want my son growing up in an orphanage. I know what those places are like. ”

” When are you leaving ? ”

” Tomorrow morning. ”

Stella stood up, walked over and locked her door. Walking back over to the bed, she removed her robe. ” I’m not letting you leave here without us making love. ”

” I don’t know how good I’ll be. ” Johnny said.

Stella pulled the covers back, and straddled Johnny’s hips. ” You just lay there and enjoy the ride. ” she said before their mouths came together.

Just after midnight Stella put her robe on, and left the bedroom as Johnny slept soundly in her bed. She had tried to get him to wait a couple more days before leaving to give his wound more time to heal, and his strength to get better, but he said he couldn’t. That he wanted to get to Atil and back as soon, and as fast as he could.


” Cruzó la frontera poco después de medianoche Capitán. ”  Sergeant Vasquez said. ( He crossed the border just after midnight Captain. )

” Bien, ese canella por fin está de vuelta en México. ¿Cuántas patrullas hay en esa zona? ” Captain Madera said.  ( Good, that swine is finally back in Mexico. How many patrols are in that area? )

” Seis patrullas. Me he asegurado de que sepan que no lo detengan. ”  ( Six patrols. I have made sure they know to not stop him.)

” Mantenga a sus hombres lejos de la ciudad. Él vendrá después del anochecer. ”  ( Keep your men away from town. He will come in after dark.)

” Ese será su error. ”  ( That will be his mistake. )

” El Madrid no es tonto. Si bajas la guardia, él te matará. ”  ( Madrid is no fool. You drop your guard, and he will kill you. )

” Es solo un hombre. ”  ( He’s just one man. )

” Sí, pero la gente de aquí lo adora.Por eso usaré a ese cerdo para mostrarles lo que sucede cuando se cruzan con el Presidente Diaz. ”  ( Yes, but the people here worship him. That is why I will use that swine to show them what happens when they cross Diaz. )


” Hello Father Jacob. ” Johnny said.

” Juanito, I knew you would come. ” Father Jacob said as he shook Johnny’s hand. ” Are you alright? ”

” I’m alright. How are you ? ”

” I am good. There were so many times I wanted to tell you in my letters, but I gave my word I wouldn’t unless something happened to her. ”

” I kept trying to think of what I did wrong to make her leave me. It never crossed  my mind she was carrying our child. ”

” She loved you very much John. You should have seen her when I told her you went home to your father in California. She was so happy, she cried. ”

” What happened ? ”

” She got sick. I did all I could for her, but there is no doctor in Atil. ”

” I know you did, and I’m grateful. You’ve always been good to me. ” Johnny said. ” Does he know about me ? ”

” He knows his father is coming to get him, and has been waiting patiently. ” Father Jacob said. ” He is very smart. ”

” I don’t even know his name,  his birthday, what he looks like! ” Johnny said.

” Kyle was born two days before Christmas. ” the father said.

” December twenty third ? ” Johnny asked with a smile.

” Yes. Does that please you? ”

” He was born on my birthday. ”

” Jessie wanted him to have the last name of the man she fell in love with, and the man he is now. ”

” Kyle Madrid Lancer ? ” Johnny asked as a sister walked into the room with his son. Johnny watched as the nun leaned down and said something to the boy. Kneeling down, he held out his arms, and waited.

Kyle took several slow steps toward the man, stopped, then ran to the man kneeling with outstretched arms.

Johnny scooped his son up in his arms, and held him tight.

” Papa ? ”

” Yes son. I’m your father. ” Johnny said. ” Let me look at you. ”

” Am I going home with you to your ranch in California? ” Kyle asked.

” Yes I am, but only if you want to go there with me. ”

” Father Jacob said your ranch is huge. ”

” Yes it is son. Is it alright if I call you son? ”

” You’re my papa. ”

” Yes I am, and yes my ranch is huge. I run it with your grandfather and uncle. ” Johnny said as he stood up.

” Would you like to visit her grave? ” the father asked.

” I need to get back across the border. ”

” I understand. ” Father Jacob said as he walked with Johnny out back to his horse.

” Johnny Madrid… are under arrest! ” Captain Madera yelled.

Johnny froze. Making sure to keep his hand away from his gun. Sighing, he turned to face Madera.

” Who are those men, why do they want you ? ” Kyle asked.

Johnny knelt down and gave his son a hug. ” A bad man who hates me. Go back inside. ”

” Sister, take the boy back inside the church. ” Father Jacob requested.

Madera walked up to Johnny, removed his gunbelt, then hit him hard in the gut, dropping him to his knees. Kicking him viciously in his ribs. ” ¡Dame los grilletes! ” ( Give me the shackles! ) he ordered. ” ¡Me voy a divertir mucho torturándote, mestizo! ”  ( I am going to have so much fun torturing you mestizo! )

Sergeant Vasquez waited until the shackles were put on Madrid, and a rope tied to the loop on the chain before he jerked him backwards. Kicking his horse, he dragged Johnny around front, and down the street.

” Esto es lo que les pasa a los que sirvieron a las órdenes de ese traidor Benito Juárez. Johnny Madrid es uno de esos hombres, disfrutaré dando ejemplo mientras lo llevoa cumplir el resto de su vida en prisión. ”( This is what happens to those who served under that traitor Benito Juarez. Johnny Madrid is one of those men, I will enjoy making an example of as I take him to serve the rest of his life in prison. )

” Captain Madera, I beg of you, have you no conscious? Please do not do this! ” Father Jacob pleaded as he went to Johnny’s side.

” Get away from me father. I don’t want you hurt. ” Johnny said as he stood up.

” I am not afraid of this man. ” the father said.

Madera hit father Jacob in the head with his pistol, knocking the man out.

” You fucking bastard! ” Johnny yelled as he started to go to Father Jacob, but was stopped when a rifle butt slammed into his back.

” ¡Suficiente! ” ( Enough! ) Madera ordered. ” ¡No quiero que lo maten todavia! ” ( I do not want him killed yet! )


Father Jacob opened his eyes, and found Sister Francis hoovering over him.

” Let me help you up Father. ” she said.

” Here, I’ll help you. ” Pedro said.

” I know it was you Pedro. ” Father Jacob said. ” You brought me the telegram. I know it was you who told the Rurales Johnny was coming. ”

” Let’s get you inside so I can clean your wound up father. ” Sister Francis said.

” I’m sorry father, please forgive me. Madera, he threatened to do terrible things to my wife, and daughter if I did not tell them. ” Pedro said.

” They were here before the wire came. Why? ” the father asked.

” The girl. He knew Johnny had taken her from Mission Santa Teresa. ” he explained. ” I never meant for you to get hurt. ”


Johnny was exhausted, and his whole body hurt. His wrist were bloody, and his arms screamed in pain from being yanked. For the last five days he’d been forced to walk west, the afternoon sun beating down on him. His lips dry and cracked, and no food in days, he didn’t know how much longer he would last. At night he was forced to sleep what little he could while standing up.  Every night the smell of the food Madera had teased his stomach.

” No va a durar mucho más sin comida ni agua Capitán. ” ( He’s not going to last much longer without food and water Captain. ) Rurale Estrada said.

” Dale un poco de agua y un plato de comida. Puede comer con los dedos. ” ( Give him some water, and a plate of food. He can eat it with his fingers. ) Madera ordered.

Estrada walked over to Madrid and set the plate of food, and cup of water down next to him. ” Siento no poder darte una cuchara. ” ( I’m sorry I cannot give you a spoon. )

” Thank you. ” Johnny said barely above a whisper.

” We will be at the prison tomorrow afternoon. ” Estrada said as he knelt down next to him. ” The doctor there, he is not much, but he can help your wrist. ”

” I remember. ” Johnny said as he started eating the beans with his fingers.

” I’m not like them. ”

” ¡Escápate de Madrid! ” ( Get away from Madrid! ) Vasquez ordered.

” Do not anger him. He will kill you. ” Estrada said before standing up, and walking away.


” Johnny! ” Scott called out as he woke up suddenly. Something was wrong. Something has happened to his brother, he could feel it in his heart. Getting up, he got dressed, and headed downstairs.

” Morning son. ”

Scott poured a cup of coffee, and sat down. ” Somethings wrong. Something has happened to my brother. I can feel it. ”

Murdoch looked at his oldest. ” I have that feeling also son. ”

” We need to find him. ”

” We have no idea where he went, so where do you suggest we look? ” Murdoch asked more harshly than he intended.

” You sound like you’re giving up on him coming back! ”

” No, never. Your brother said he would be gone four months. He asked me not to worry about him, but as his father, I have been worried ever since he left almost three months ago. ” Murdoch said.


” Father Jacob, you have a concussion. You can’t travel yet. ” Mother Emaline said firmly.

” I have to. His family needs to know what has happened. ” he responded. ” I need to take the boy to them. It is what Johnny would want me to do. ”

” Not until you can stand up, and walk without getting dizzy. I can’t let you go, and risk you passing out somewhere. ”

” Where is the boy? ”

” With Sister Mary. He seen what they did to his father, and you. ” she said.

” Which way did they go? ”

” I don’t know, they were gone when I came outside and found you on the ground. ”


Johnny watched as Vasquez walked over and untied the rope keeping his arms above his head. Feeling the blood start flowing into his numb arms.

” Move! ” the sergeant ordered as he shoved Johnny.

Johnny had had enough of the man, spinning around, he swung, and hit Vasquez as hard as he could in the jaw, knocking him down.

” ¡Acabas de cometer un gran error, cerdo! ” ( You just made a big mistake swine! ) the sergeant said as he pulled his gun, and shot Johnny.

Johnny felt the bullet slam into his left leg, dropping him to the ground.

” ¡Cerdo asqueroso! ” ( You filthy swine! ) the sergeant spat as he cocked his gun again, and aimed it at him as a bullet hit at his feet.

”  Sargento, guade el arma…¡ahora! ” (  Sergeant, put the gun away…! ) Madera ordered.

Rurale Estrada went to Johnny, and tied a bandanna around his leg. ” ¡La bala sigue en su pierna, capitán! ” ( The bullet is still in his leg captain! )

” ¡Si muere,ne vengaré de ti! ” ( If he dies, I will take my revenge out on you! ) Madera said with anger before slapping Vasquez hard across the face.


”Johnny opened his eyes and his first thought was that his left leg was on fire. He moaned aloud and tried to focus his eyes, as he struggled to look around, and then another pain, worse than the first, ripped through his leg. He raised his head to look, and saw a man with a filthy apron, and blood on his fingers, doing something to his leg.  Johnny tried to grab at the man to stop him, but discovered his hands had been chained down. Closing his eyes, he prayed death would be swift, and willingly allowed blackness to overtake him.

When he woke up the next time, it was dark, and cold, but he could make out the bars on the window above him. He tried to move, but found he was shackled securely to the floor. Trying to move sent white hot pain thru his leg. Closing his eyes, he tried to black out where he was. Though his last time in the prison had been short, there was no mistaking the strong stench of infection and death, and it made him sick to his stomach.

The pain in his leg was almost overwhelming at times, he knew he was in serious trouble. He could feel his skin was on fire with fever as he raised his head to look at his leg with filthy rags binding his wound. He knew Madera would keep him alive to have his fun trying to break him.


” I insist you wait one more week before traveling Father. ” Mother Emaline said sternly.

” You can be quite uncompromising Mother Emaline. ”

” I’ve had years of practice. ” she said with a smile. ” Madera is a brutal man. He needs to be stopped. ”

” He will torture Johnny until he begs to be killed. ” Father Jacob said.

” From what I have heard about him, that could take a long time. ” she said.

” He has a reason to fight to stay alive now. ”

” His son? ”

” His son, father, and a brother back in California. ”

” Do they know he has a son? ”

Father Jacob shook his head.


” ¿Como es el? ” ( How is he? ) Madera asked the prison doctor. Actually, Medina thought, doctor was too good of a term for the man. He spent most of his time in a drunken stupor, and even when sober his lack of skill was apparent.

The doctor shrugged lackadaisically. ” Tiene fiebre y va perdiendo el conocimiento desde que lo trajeron aquí. Probablemente estará muerto en unos días. ” (He has a fever and drifting in and out of consciousness since being brought here. He probably will be dead in a few days. )

” ¡Si fueras undoctor decente, él estaría bien! ” (If you were a decent doctor, he’d be fine! ) Madera said coldly. ” ¡Si quieres seguir respirando,harás lo que tengas que hacer para que Madrid viva! ” ( If you want to continue to breath, you will do whatever you have to do to make sure Madrid lives! )

” ¿Por qué quieres que viva tan mal? ” (Why do you want him to live so badly? )

” Porque. (Because.) Madera growled. ” Va a pagar, y lo quieroen buena forma antes de romperlo. ” (He’s going to pay, and I want him in good shape before I break him.)

The doctor nodded. ” Hice lo mejor que pude. ” ( I did the best I could.)

” Quiero que te asegures de que no se quede solo ni un minuto. No quiero que vuelva a escapar. ” (I want you to make sure he’s not left alone for even a minute. I don’t want him to escape again.)

The doctor snorted. ” Está encadenado, delira y es débil. No hay forma de que pueda escapar. (He’s chained, he’s delirious, and he’s weak. There’s no way he could escape.)

Madera shook his head. ” Hay más de una forma de escapar del doctor, y NO lo voy a perder de nuevo. No hasta que termine con él, ¿entiendes? ¡Ahora vuelve allí y asegúrate de que vive! ” (There is more than one way for him to escape doctor, and I am NOT going to lose him again. Not until I’m through with him, understand? Now you get back there, and you make sure he lives!)


” Father Jacob, what if they don’t want me? ” Kyle asked a month after his father had been taken.

” Your father has told me about his father, and brother. ” he said. ” His father never got the chance to be a father to him. His mother left in the middle of the night when he was a baby. He searched many years for him until he was finally found four years ago. ”

” But papa didn’t know about me, and he wants me. ”

” Yes he does, and I pray he is able to come back to you. Your grandfather, and uncle are going to be shocked when they learn about you, but I know in my heart they will want you. ”

” Papa said his ranch is very big. ”

” I believe he said it is one hundred thousand acres, and they have ten thousand head of cattle. ” Father Jacob said. ” You know what else Johnny told me in his letters they have? ”

Kyle shook his head as he yawned.

” The finest Capanero de Palomino’s in all the San Joaquin, and more wild horses than a man could break in a lifetime. ”

Kyle yawned again. ” I’ve never seen such a horse. What color are they? ”

” Like gold with a white mane and tail. Now why don’t you try and get some sleep? ”


Father Jacob stopped the buggy outside the huge house, climbed down, and helped Kyle down.

” My father lives here? ” the boy asked.

” Yes. He wrote telling me his father had built the place up many years ago. ” Father Jacob said.

” Will I ever see my father again? ”

” God willing you will. ” he responded. ” Let’s see if your grandfather or uncle are here. ”

” Murdoch,  it would seem we have visitors. ” Scott said as he looked out the window.

Murdoch stood up and walked over to the veranda door, and stepped out onto the portico. ” Can we help you father? ”

” Mister Lancer, I’m Father Jacob. ”

” Won’t you come in father ? ” Murdoch said.

” I must say, your son describing this place gives it no justice. ” Father Jacob said as they walked into the great room.

” Father, this room is bigger than your church. ” Kyle said.

” Yes it is. ”

” Excuse me, but are you Father Jacob my son Johnny has been writing to the last four years? ” Murdoch asked.

” Yes. He is a remarkable young man, who I am afraid is in serious trouble. ”

” A bad man took my papa. ” Kyle said.

” Your…..I’m afraid you have us at a somewhat disadvantage father. ”

” This is your grandson….Kyle Madrid Lancer, Johnny’s son. ” Father Jacob said.

” Son….Johnny knew he had a son and…….”

” My papa didn’t know about me until my mother died. ”

” That’s why he went to Mexico? ”

” Yes. ” Father Jacob said, and then told them about Johnny, and Jessie.

” I wish he had told me the truth. ” Murdoch said.

” We have to get him back. ” Scott said.

” I know we do, but we don’t know where they took him, or if he’s even still alive. ” Murdoch responded.

” My papa will come back to me. He promised he would. ” Kyle said.

” How old are you young man? ”

” Four. ”

” He was born on Johnny’s birthday. ” Father Jacob said.

” What are the odds. ” Scott said.

Kyle walked over to Murdoch. ” Can I call you grandpa? ”

Murdoch looked at Scott, then down at Kyle. Reaching down, he picked him up. ” I would like that very much. ”

Kyle wrapped his arms around Murdoch’s neck, hugging him.

” The two of you must be tired from your long journey. ” Scott said. ” Why don’t I show you to a guest bedroom so you can freshen up, and rest. ”

” We eat supper at six father. ” Murdoch said.

” Thank you. ”

Scott came back downstairs to find his father pouring a drink. ” What are we going to do? ”

” I’m sending a wire to the Pinkerton’s to start checking every jail, or prison in Sonora for Johnny. I refuse to believe he is  never coming back here. ” Murdoch said firmly.

” This Captain Madera, from what Father Jacob says, is a ruthless man hell bent on making Johnny suffer. ” Scott said.

” I got him away from that animal once. I’ll do it again. ”

” I just hope Johnny stays alive so we can. ”

” So do I son, so do I. ”


The next several weeks passed in a blur for Johnny. He would let his mind drift back to being with Jessie, or seeing his son. He knew he was being drugged, and most of the time he fought against being fed the slop they gave the prisoners.

Gradually, in spite of himself, he grew stronger, and the fever went down. His leg no longer hurt as much, and he knew at any time, Madera, would start having fun with him. The constant stress of waiting for one of them to appear started wearing on him.

Johnny woke up with a start and seen Vasquez looming over him. ” ¡El capitán quiere verte, cerdo! ” ( The captain wants to see you swine! )


” You have a very beautiful estancia Mister Lancer. ” Father Jacob said.

” Grandpa, where are the golden horses ? ” Kyle asked.

” Aah the Capanero de Palominos. They run out by Black Mesa, on the other side of the ranch. ”

” Maybe my papa can show me them when he comes back home. ” he said.

” Your uncle Scott can show you one your father caught, and broke. He’s in the barn. ”

” Papa has a golden horse? ”

” Yes he does. ” Murdoch responded.

” Perhaps your uncle will show him to you after supper. ” Father Jacob suggested.

” Grandpa, do you think when I’m bigger, I can have my own horse? ”

” I don’t see why not, but I think it will be up to your father when. ” Murdoch said. ” Johnny is an excellent horseman. He is very good with a horse. ”

” When will papa come home? ”

” I hired a Pinkerton man to look for him. ”

                                                                                 Chapter 3 ( final chapter )

Johnny was shoved unceremoniously into Madera’s office and chained securely in a chair. Knowing what was coming, he took a deep breath. He knew Madera would make life hell from now on. Reaching deep down inside he forced Madrid to the surface. He had to try and survive for his son. He didn’t want his son growing up without a father like he had.

Finally, Madera walked into his office and poured himself a glass of tequila. He took a sip without even glancing at his captive, and then slowly lit a cigar. After taking a few puffs he sauntered over to Johnny and watched him for several minutes.

” Bueno Madrid, el doctor dice que tu pierna está lo suficientemente curada como para salir al patio. Creo que dejaré que te preguntes esta noche qué te haré mañana. Creo que mañana será un buen momento para empezar a divertirme contigo. ” ( Well Madrid, the doctor says your leg is healed enough you can go out in the yard. I think I will leave you to wonder tonight what I will do to you tomorrow. I think tomorrow will be a good time to start having fun with you. ) Madera said.

Johnny refused to look at the man, and remained quiet. The last time he was in prison, Madera had whipped, and beat him once a week trying to break him. Even though he summoned Madrid, deep down inside he was terrified at what the man had planned for him.

” ¡Nunca me romperás! ” ( You’ll never break me. ) he said softly.

Madera walked over behind Madrid, and grabbed a handful of hair, pulling his head back. ” ¡Yo no estaría tan seguro de eso! ” ( I wouldn’t be so sure about that! ) he said before blowing smoke in Johnny’s eyes, and watched as Madrid never once flinched, or blinked.  ” ¡Llévenlo de vuelta a su celda! ” ( Take him back to his cell! )


Johnny was dragged out into the center of the yard the next morning.

” Quítale los grilletes. ” ( Take his shackles off! ) Madera ordered.

Johnny looked around to see the other prisoner in the yard lined up, waiting for something. What he knew he would find out soon enough as his shackles were removed from around his ankles.

” Para quien no lo sepa, este mestizo es Johnny Madrid. Es un hombre buscado en México porque luchó lor el traidor Benito Juárez contra México…..y por ese crimen, está condenado a cadena perpetua. ” ( To those who do not know this mestizo is Johnny Madrid. He is a wanted man in Mexico, because he fought for the traitor Benito Juarez against Mexico…..and for that crime, he is sentenced to life in prison. ) Madera said as he walked over to Madrid. ” Uno que será de lo más desagradable te lo aseguro. ” ( One that will be most unpleasant I assure you. )

” Save your speech. I’ve heard it before. ” Johnny said.

Madera backhanded Johnny as hard as he could, causing him to stagger two steps to his left.

Johnny glared at Madera as blood trickled down his chin. ” ¿Eso es todo lo que tienes? ”  ( That all you got? )

Madera hit Johnny hard in the gut, doubling him over. ” Oh, tengo más….¡mucho más para ti! ”  ( Oh I have more….much more for you! ) he said.

Johnny spit blood on Madera’s uniform,making the man lash out, hitting him in the face again before walking away.

Johnny watched as another prisoner was walked out into the yard, and stopped ten feet away from him. A chain about five feet long was fastened to Johnny and the other prisoner’s left wrist.

” Los Apaches tienen una forma de pelear que encuentro bastante entretenida. Luchan hasta la muerte. Solo uno de ustedes sobrevivirá a esto. Ambros recibirán un cuchillo….y creo que ya sabes el resto. ” ( The Apache have a way of fighting I find quite entertaining. They fight to the death. Only one of you will survive this. You will both be given a knife, and…..I think you know the rest. ) Madera said as he walked back over to Madrid. ” Te niegas a luchar contra él, otros prisioneros sufrirán por tu culpa. ” ( You refuse to fight him, other prisoners will suffer because of you. ) 

Johnny had been taught by a Chiricahua Apache, so he knew all about their way of fighting. Having been ambushed once, an Apache for some reason decided to save his life instead of killing him. When he was well enough, the brave taught him their way of fighting. Why he never knew, and now he hated knowing. When Rurale Estrada brought two knives over and tossed them down at their feet, Johnny sighed when he seen both knives had an eight inch blade, with the end honed down to a razor sharp tip on both sides for gutting a man.

Neither man moved toward the knives. Both just stood staring at each other. One in total fear, and sweating profusely from that fear, and the other not wanting to kill an innocent man for the sake of entertaining a barbaric man.

A rifle shot hitting the ground between the two men, echoed inside the prison walls. ” ¡Pelear! ” ( Fight! ) Madera ordered. ” ¡Luchat o morir! ”( Fight or die! )

Johnny slowly bent down and picked the knife up with his right hand, and felt the grip. The knife was well made, and balanced. ” Recoge el cuchillo. ”  ( Pick up the knife. ) Johnny said.

” No puedo hacer esto señor. ” ( I cannot do this senor! ) the man said with a quiver to his voice.

” ¡Te matará si no lo haces! ” ( He’ll kill you if you don’t! )

” Y si lo hago…me matarás.. Una muerte rápida por una bala….o una agonizante por un cuchillo. ” ( And if I do… will kill me. A swift death from a bullet….or an agonizing one from a knife? ) the man said as a tear ran down his face.  Bending down, he picked up the knife. ” Por favor, haz que mi muerte sea rápida. ”  ( Please make my death swift ? ) he asked before lunging at Johnny.

Johnny pushed the man away, spun around, and waited. ” ¡Dios perdoname! ” ( God forgive me! ) Johnny said as the man lunged at him again. Bringing his knife up, he plunged it straight into the mans heart, and watched as the life left his eyes as he slid to the ground.


Standing in a corner of his cell, Johnny shivered as a gust of cold wind came in, hitting him in the face. Looking out into the yard, he closed his eyes trying to block out the images of the other prisoners he had been force to kill. He knew he had been at the prison over a year since this would be his second winter behind the walls. The thin coats they gave to the prisoners,  did very little to block out the cold. He couldn’t help but start wondering if his family were looking for him. Had Father Jacob taken his son to Lancer, and told them what happened, or did they figure he was dead. He told Murdoch he would be back in four months. How long ago that was for sure he didn’t know. When he first came to Puerto Peñasco, he was strong, and had muscle. Now his ribs, and hip bones were starting to protrude. All his muscles were becoming weak. The strength in his arms all but gone. The slop they fed him would be full of maggots, and the water  was so putrid, even the rats didn’t want to drink it. During the rains, he would use his cup to catch the water as it came in the barred window. Most of the other prisoners left him alone, especially once they learned who he was. He knew by the way they would look at him, each one was praying they wouldn’t be his next victim.

What he couldn’t figure out is why Madera hadn’t bothered him the past month. What did he have planned for him now. Every beating he got from the guards, the man watched, laughing. Every innocent prisoner he was forced to kill became another ghost to haunt his sleep at night, when he could sleep. He did know that Madera would probably get worse with his torture. He vowed to break Madrid, and make him scream in agony, and beg to be killed. If Madera only knew that deep down inside, Johnny Madrid had died, but would never give the man the satisfaction of screaming aloud, or begging. He still held a small sliver of hope that he would get to go home and raise his son.


Murdoch opened the letter from the Pinkerton he hired to look for his son over a year ago. Two other reports he had received told him his son had not been found yet. Reading the report, he sighed, and shook his head as Scott walked into the room.

” We finished moving the herd from the north pastures. ” Scott said as he removed his gloves. ” Is that a report from the Pinkerton’s? ”

” It is. No luck yet. He’s checked several prisons in Chihuahua, and Sonora. ” Murdoch responded. ” He’s headed to Hermosillo now, and then Mexico City. ”

Father Jacob came downstairs. ” Your man can find a list of all prisoners being held at any prison. ”

” But there’s no guarantee Johnny was reported to be a prisoner. ” Murdoch said.

” Yes, but there is a way you can find out. Did you not buy his freedom before? ”

” He did seconds from Johnny being executed. ”

” He could have been sold into slavery. ”

” Slavery! ” Scott said.

” Yes. Mexico is a poor country young man. The Rurales work for pesos. They will do anything for more money. ”

” Do all the prisons sell prisoners into slavery? ” Scott asked.

” This I do not know. ”

” Just what is this Puerto Peñasco prison like? ” Murdoch asked as they walked inside.

” Hell. It sits in the hottest, dries part of the Sonoran desert known as the Altar. The prison itself was built right in the middle of volcanic rock that surrounds three sides of it. The ocean is behind it. It’s infested with sharks, and in the winter, the wind is very cold.  The rocks are so jagged, there isn’t a man yet who has been able to escape going over them. Anyone who does make it dies in the desert within five miles from the heat, or freezes to death from the cold. ”  Father Jacob explained. ” Treatment inside is not good. They’re lucky if they get a stale, rancid cup of water a day, moldy, hard as rock bread, or mash full of maggots to eat.”

” Have you got any plans Father Jacob? ” Murdoch asked.

” To go back to my mission. ”

” What if you could run a mission here? Morro Coyo has a mission with nobody to run it. ”

” Could you stay father? ” Kyle asked.

” I have been thinking about that. I would like to stay close to the boy. ”


” Get up Madrid.” Sergeant Vasquez ordered as the cell door swung open.

Johnny sat up as two Rurales came in and unlocked the chain from his leg irons and yanked him up to his feet.

” Move.” they ordered as he was shoved to the door.

Stepping outside he found Madera standing there with an evil grin on his face and a whip coiled in his right hand.

” Take him to the tree and chain his arms around it.”

One thing Johnny hated more than anything, was the whip. Crude and vicious it would tear a mans flesh open jaggedly. The last time here Madera had whipped his back raw and then poured tequila on it just to make it hurt even more. Upon closer look Johnny could see that this whip was different though. The end of it had knots, something he knew would hurt worse than anything, especially when the person using it knew how and stood back just far enough so that the tip was all that struck the flesh.

Madera came up when Johnny stopped at the tree and shoved him into the trunk hard. ” Estoy aburrido, así que creo que hoy me divertiré un poco. Hoy te haré sentir dolor. ” ( I am bored, so I think I will have a little fun today. Today I will make you feel pain. ) he said as he grabbed a handful of hair and jerked Johnny’s head back. ” ¡Entonces dejaré que mis hombres se diviertan contigo en tu celda! ” ( Then I will let my men have some fun with you back in your cell! )

Johnny knew what the guards had planned to do to him once he was whipped. He had heard the screams from other prisoners, and had always prayed it would never happen to him. With no fight left in him, he stood and waited for the pain, and hoped it would be enough he would pass out, and not feel anything after.


” ¡El Capitán Madera, el General Andrade y el Mayor Arago están en la puerta! ” ( Captain Madera, General Andrade, and Major Arago are at the gate! ) Sergeant Vasquez said.

Madera stood up. ” ¿ Ellos están aquí? ” ( They are here?) he asked.

” Si, hay un gringocon ellos.” ( Yes, there is a gringo with them.) the sergeant responded.

” Me pregunto por quénunca recibínoticias de que vendrían.” ( I wonder why I never received word they were coming.) General Madera said as the general rode into the prison yard. “ General Andrade, Mayor Arago, bienvenido. Por favor, ¿no te bajarás y saldrás del frío? ” ( General Andrade, Major Arago, welcome. Please, won’t you get down and come in out of the cold?)

” Gracias. Se está poniendo más frío. Pronto tendremos nieve. ” ( Thank you. It is getting colder. Soon we will have snow.) General Andrade said.

” ¿A quédebo una visita tan prestigiosa? ” ( To what do I owe such a prestigious visit?) Madera asked.

” Mi visita no es agradable. ” ( My visit is not a pleasant one.) Andrade said as he walked inside.

” ¿Sabes por qué estamos aqui? ” ( Do you know why we are here?) Andrade asked.

” No.” Madera responded as he poured three drinks.

” No, estas seguro? ” ( No, are you sure?) Arago asked.

” Si, estoy seguro.” ( Yes, I am sure.) General Madera responded as he handed them their drinks.

” ¿Tiene una prisión aquí llamada Johnny Madrid? ”  ( Do you have a prisoner here named Johnny Madrid? ) the general asked.

Madera looked at the general. ” Madrid….Ese canalla se escapó de las elecciones hace años. No lo he visto desde. ”  ( Madrid….That swine escaped execution years ago. I have not seen him since. )

” Este hombre es un detective de Pinkerton. Tiene pruebas de que aquí tenéis a Madrid. ”  ( This man is a Pinkerton detective. He has proof you have Madrid here. ) General Andrade said.

” ¿Tengo que recordarte la sanción por mentirle al general? ” ( Do I need to remind you the penalty for lying to the general? ) Major  Arago asked.

” Johnny Madrid no está Mayor. ”  ( Johnny Madrid is not here Major! )

” ¿Entonces no te importará si miramos? ” ( Then you won’t mind if we look? ) the major said.

” Él te miente. Madrid está aquí. Ha estado aquípor más de dos años. ” (  He lies to you. Madrid is here. He’s been here for over two years. ) Rurale Estrada said. ” Te llevaré a él. ”  ( I will take you too him! )

General Andrade, and Major Arago followed Rurale Estrada into the prisoner holding cells, and immediately covered their mouths as they walked to the back of the building through human waste, and rotting dead bodies the rats were feeding on.

” He is chained there. ”

” Bring him out! ” the general ordered.

Estrada walked to the still figure laying on the filthy floor in water, and as gentle as he could, he got Madrid to stand up. ( There are men who  want to see you Johnny. One of them is a Pinkerton man. ) Estrada said softly. ( Can you stand? )

Johnny tried to stand, but was just too weak, and beaten down.

( He is too weak to stand general. )

Pinkerton Martin walked over to them. ” My god. ” he said. Picking Johnny up, he carried him outside where they could get a good look at the once feared, now totally broken gunfighter. ” For gods sake, get me a blanket! ” the Pinkerton agent yelled. ” He’s freezing to death! ”

” ¡Llévenlo a la oficina y traigan al doctor aquí! ” (Take him into the office, and get the doctor in here! ) General Andrade ordered.

Johnny was placed on the cot in Madera’s office, and covered up with blankets.

” ¿Eres el médico de esta prisión? ” ( You are the doctor for this prison? ) General Andrade asked.

” Soy. ” ( I am. )

” Si este hombre muere…¡tú mueres! ”  ( If this man dies… die! )


” Murdoch! He found him! ” Scott yelled as he hurried into the house.

” What? ”

” Read it! ” Scott said as he handed him the telegram.

Murdoch read the telegram, and then sat down in the chair at his desk. ”  He won’t be the same when he comes home son. ”

” What do you mean? ”

” A Mexican prison is brutal. Your brother has been in one over two years. I can guarantee he’s been tortured, starved, beaten, and god knows what else has been done to him. Johnny won’t be the same. ”

” Then we will do whatever we have to do to help him come back to us. ” Scott said firmly. ” Where’s Kyle? ”

” He went with Father Jacob to Morro Coyo. ” Murdoch said. ” We can’t tell him. Not until we know how bad Johnny is. ”

“ I agree, but something tells me him being Johnny’s son, he’s just as tough as his father is. ”


”  Rurale Estrada, quieroque elija dos hombres en los que pueda confiar. Pídeles que enganchen un vagón y lo preparen para viajar en Madrid. Escoltarás al agente de Pinkerton y a Madrid a Yuma, para que pueda subirse a un tren y volver a casa. ” ( Rurale Estrada, I want you to pick two men you can trust. Have them hitch a wagon up, and prepare it for Madrid to travel in. You will escort the Pinkerton agent and Madrid to Yuma, so he can get on a train and go home. ) General Andrade ordered.

” Huerta y Vargas son buenos hombres generales. Nos ocuparemos de que llegue sano y salvo. ”  ( Huerta and Vargas are good men general. We will see to it he gets there safely. ) Estrada said.

” Lleve al médico con usted. ” ( Take the doctor with you. )


” They are in Yuma to take the train home. ” Murdoch said.

” That means they will be in Stockton in two days. ” Scott said.

” We’ll stop and let Sam know we are bringing him home. ”

” I already did. He’ll be out as soon as we do. ” Scott  said. ” I think we should leave Kyle with Father Jacob until we have Johnny home. ”

” I agree. We don’t know how bad his condition is. ”

“ I’ll get a wagon put together for bringing him home in with plenty of blankets. ”


Johnny sat looking out the window at the passing scenery. ” I remember you. ” he said softly. ” You’re the Pinkerton man who drove up in the wagon seconds before I was to be executed. ”

” Alan Martin. I’m sorry to meet under these circumstances. ” Alan said. ” I never got the chance to thank you for saving my life that day. ”

” I think we’re even. ” Johnny said.

” I’m sorry it took me so long to find you. ”

” How’d you get the job of finding me? ” Johnny asked.

” Your father sent a wire telling me what happened. Not knowing which way they went. I started searching the prisons from Laredo west, and down as far as Mexico City. Which is where I finally learned where you were taken. ”

Johnny pulled the blanket up around his shoulders, leaned against the window, and was soon fast asleep again.


” Capitán Madera, ya no dirigirá esta prisión. Los  envio a usted y al sargento Vásquez a Chihuahua para cumplir una sentencia de cinco años de trabajos forzados en la mina de plata Batopilas. ” ( Captain Madera, you will no longer run this prison. I am sending you, and Sergeant Vasquez, to Chihuahua, to serve a sentence of five years hard labor at the Batopilas Silver mine. )

” ¡No puedes hacerme eso! ” (You can’t do that to me! )

” Puedo,y lo soy. ”  ( I can, and I am. )

” ¿Por qué me condenas? No soy yo quien abusó de los presos, e hizo que Madrid peleara con otros presos al estilo Apache. ”  ( Why are you sentencing me? I am not the one who abused the prisoners, and made Madrid fight other prisoners Apache style! ) Sergeant Vasquez demanded.

” ¡Cállate! ” ( Shut up! ) Madera ordered.

” ¿Hiciste que los prisioneros pelearan con cuchillos hasta la muerte? ” ( You made prisoners knife fight to the death? ) the general demanded.

” ¡ Hizo que el Madrid lo hiciera! ”  ( He made Madrid do it! ) Vasquez said.

”  ¿Y a cuántos hombres mató? ” ( And how many men did he kill? ) the general asked.

” Nueve.Si no peleaban, entonces se enfrentaban a que les dispatatan. ”  ( Nine. If they didn’t fight, then they faced being shot. )

” ¿Qué es esta lucha con cuchillo Apache? ” ( What is this Apache knife fighting? ) Major Arago asked.

” Ambos hombres serían encadenados juntos en su muñeca izquierda por una cadena corta y se les daría un cuchillo. ”  ( Both men would be chained together at their left wrist by a short chain, and given a knife. )

” Cuando encontramos Madrid, estaba desnudo y recientemente había sido azotado. ¿Por qué? ” ( When we found Madrid, he was naked, and had recently been whipped. Why? )

” Las peleas con cuchillos y los azotes se hicieron porque el capitán estaba aburrido. ” ( The knife fights, and whipping were done because the captain was bored. )

” ¿Y su estar desnudo? ” ( And his being naked? )

” El capitán dejó que los guardias hicieran lo que quisieran con él mientras estaba encadenado en su celda. ” ( The captain let the guards do what they wanted to him while he was chained in his cell.)

” ¿Y no hiciste nada para tratar de detener este abuso? ” ( And you did nothing to try and stop this abuse? )

” Hice lo que me ordenaron hacer general. ” ( I did what I was ordered to do general! )

Major Arago looked at the general a minute before walking outside in disgust.


” Mister Lancer? ” Pinkerton Martin asked.

” Yes. ”

” I’m Alan Martin. I’m sorry we have to finally meet under these circumstances. ”

” Mister Martin, it’s good to meet you. ” Murdoch said as they shook hands. ” This is my oldest son Scott. ”

” Doctor. I should warn you, your son is in bad shape, and very weak. He’s been sleeping a lot. . The doctor in Mexico, that man was so incompetent. ”

” Johnny didn’t want help getting off the train. ” Alan said.

” Oh my……” Sam said as they all turned to see Johnny slowly step off the train. His hair down past his shoulders, and a full beard covered his face.

Scott immediately went to his brother.

Johnny looked into the grayish blue eyes standing in front of him. ” Hey brother. ” he said softly.

” Hey brother. We have a wagon fixed up to take you home. ” he said as he put an arm around his brother to help him walk.

” I can make it. ” Johnny said.

Murdoch couldn’t move. He was in so much shock seeing just how bad his son was. ” My god! ”

” Hey old man. Sorry I’m late. ” Johnny said.

Murdoch walked closer and pulled his son into a hug. ” I was so afraid I would never see you alive again. ”

” Let’s get you settled in the wagon, and home son. ”

” Where’s my son? ”

” He’s with Father Jacob at the mission in Morro Coyo son. We didn’t know how bad you were hurt, so I thought it best he didn’t see you right away. ” Murdoch responded.” Can you come to the ranch for a few days Mister Martin? ”

” I’d like too, but I have another assignment I have to do. ” Alan said. ” John, you take care of yourself young man. ”

” You’re welcome at Lancer any time. ” Johnny said.


Johnny slowly climbed out of the wagon, and stopped.

Murdoch stopped the wagon. ” Is something wrong son? ”

Johnny looked around. ” I thought I would never see it again. ” he said softly

” Frank, ride into town and have Sam come out here. ” Scott ordered.

” Let’s get you up to your room, and out of those clothes. ” Murdoch said.

Johnny started to walk toward the house, hut staggered, and almost fell. ” Guess I’m too weak. ”

Scott scooped his brother up, shocked at how little he weighed, and carried him upstairs to his bedroom.

” Can I have a hot bath? ” Johnny asked softly.

” Just as soon as Sam gets here, and checks you out brother. ”

” Let’s get them rags off you. ” Murdoch said as he started to remove the shirt.

” Don’t touch me. ” Johnny with anger as he shoved his fathers hands away.

Murdoch stepped back, shocked at his sons outburst.

Johnny laid down on the bed, and curled up in a ball. ” No más…..Por favor, deténgase. ” ( No more….Please stop! ) he said as tears escaped his eyes.

Scott looked at his father. They both knew why Johnny lashed out like he just did.

” Son…nobody is going to hurt you ever again. ” Murdoch said. ” You’re home, and safe now. ”

” Lo siento papá……Lo intenté….Traté de mantenerme fuerte. ” ( I’m sorry pa…..I tried…..I tried to stay strong! )

” What did he say? ” Scott asked.

” You still don’t……I need to teach you Spanish, Boston. ” Johnny said as he sat up.

” Indeed you do brother. ” Scott said. ” You have no idea how good it is to hear you call me that. ”

” You made at me? ” Johnny asked as he looked at his father.

” Why would I be mad at you son? You’ve done nothing wrong. ”

” I didn’t know I had a son until I got the letter. ”

” Father Jacob told us what happened. Though it was quite the surprise, that young man is very smart. ”

” I like having a nephew around to teach. ”

” Sam. ” Murdoch said.

Johnny stood up, and placed a hand on his brothers shoulder.. ” Hey Sam. ”

Sam walked around the bed, and set his bag down. ” Hello John. Why don’t you two go downstairs while I visit with my patient. ” Sam suggested.

” Any chance you could make some coffee old man? ”

Murdoch smiled. ” I think I can manage that son. ”


Sam came downstairs two hours later. ” My god….What the hell is the latter with those people? What they did to that boy. ” he said. ” He needs a hot bath and gentle washing to get the caked on grub off his skin, and sores. ”

” Sam…..will he be alright? ” Murdoch asked.

” He’s been starved Murdoch. Getting weight back on that boy is going to take time. His muscles are weak. He has sores all over his body. He’s been whipped, and recently I might add. ”

” I left salve by his bed to put on the sores on his legs, and his back. ” Sam said. ” Has his son seen him yet? ”

” Not yet. We didn’t know how bad he would be. ” Murdoch said.

” He will need help bathing, and shaving until he gets his strength back. His hair needs cut, and Johnny said he doesn’t want Zeke coming here to do it. ”

” One of us will trim it up for him until he’s strong enough to go to town Sam. ”


” Take your time, take your time brother. ” Scott said as he helped Johnny get in bed after his hot bath.

” I know I smell better. Do I look better? ”

” Now that I can see your face with all that hair gone, you’re starting to look like my little brother. ”

” Thanks. ” he said as he snuggled down in the covers. ” Would you stay with me until I fall asleep? ”

” I’m not going anywhere brother. I got a good book to read, and I’m staying right here. ”


” Kyle, we need to talk to you before you go up and see your father. ” Murdoch said.

” Did they hurt my papa? ”

” Yes they did. Now I need you to be brave. Johnny is going to need a lot of help to get better. Can you do that? ” Murdoch asked.

” Kyle, they starved Johnny. He’s skinny, and very weak. ” Scott said. ” He has to have a salve put on his sores twice a day. ”

” I can take care of him uncle Scott. I helped Father Jacob take care of my mother. ”

” Why don’t you take him upstairs to see Johnny son? ”


” Johnny, you have a visitor. ” Scott said.

Kyle slowly walked into the room, and stopped at the end of the bed.

” Do I get a hug? ” Johnny asked.

Kyle climbed up on the bed, and gave Johnny a hug. ” Grandpa and Uncle Scott said those men hurt you, and that you need help getting better. I’m going to help you. ”

Johnny hugged his son. ” I was afraid I would never seen you again. ”


Johnny walked downstairs a month later, and sat down on the couch. ” Scott out working? ”

” What? ”

” Scott out working? ”

” Yes. He’s finishing the surveying. ”

” It’s quiet around here with Kyle in school. ”

” He’s a very smart young man. ” Murdoch said.

” Did Father Jacob tell you how me and Jessie met? ”

” He said you were both at the orphanage together, and that you came back some time later and took her away from there. ” Murdoch responded as he stood up, and walked over to sit down across from his son. His instinct was telling him his son wanted to talk.

” It was her sixteenth birthday. A storm was brewing so we stopped t this abandoned miners shack. I was falling in love with her, but couldn’t tell her. I was afraid if I did, she would run off. We were together a couple months, then I woke one morning to find she did just like my mother did to you. Only she left a note telling me not to look for her. That she left because she loved me. I never knew she was pregnant until Father Jacob told me. ” Johnny explained.

” Son, can I ask why you didn’t tell me all this before? ”

” I know I probably should have told you….I guess I didn’t because I was afraid we’d get in a fight, and words would be said that neither of us wanted to say. ”

” John….son I want you to listen to me. I don’t want you to ever feel like you can’t come to me and talk. ”

” So you’ve had almost two years more than me with my son. How’s it feel…..grandpa? ” Johnny asked with a smile.

” I never thought I would ever be a grandfather. I love it. ”

” I can never love another woman the way I loved Jessie. ”

” Never is a long time son. I felt the same way after I lost Catherine, but then I met your mother. You’ll find someone. ”

” Don’t really have the time for that now. What with working six days a week and having a son to raise now. Ain’t got any time for romance and such. ” Johnny said. ” Have you been telling him stories? ”

” I’ve been telling him about back home in Scotland, and how I came here, married Scott’s mother, came out here and built Lancer up. ”

” You know what he calls us, me and you? ”

” What? ”

” The Legend and the gun. ”

1 – 23 – 2023


Thank you for reading! The authors listed on this site spend many hours writing stories for your enjoyment, and their only reward is the feedback you leave. So please take a moment to leave a comment.  Even the simplest ‘I liked this!” can make all the difference to an author and encourage them to keep writing and posting their stories here.  You can comment in the ‘reply’ box below or email Nancy Marie directly.



3 thoughts on “The Legend and the Gun by Nancy Marie

  1. I’m so happy you wrote this new story. You’re a great writer-thank you for sharing your talent with us and helping to make Lancer live on.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: