When I say I shot Roger accidentally I mean, it was a fair call in the context of the duel. However, I had not expected to kill him. It was accidental because, well, it is not my fault that I became a crack shot due to being lost in the desert and having to shoot seagulls to get food. You will recall that one of the first things I bought when I got to Texas was 2 ammo belts and a .45.
Second. Any man worth his salt in Texas knows how to dodge bullets.
After the smoke cleared and the people saw that Roger was dead, it was very awkward. No one had expected me to win. They had even painted a “Congratulations Rodger!” [misspelled] banner and it was already suspended and flapping gently across the front of the Town Hall.
Well, what was I to say? This was what they had asked me to do. No one could object to me going on being the Mayor of Shitsville. The terms of the duel, or, “Leadership Challenge”, had stipulated quite clearly that there could be no coup, no objection, no revenge, etc. In Texas duels are very decisive.
I put my gun back in its holster and we just stood there for a long time. It is useless going into how bad I felt and how betrayed, how sick and sorry I was that I had to shoot Roger, how really I thought all of the residents of Shitsville could go fuck. I thought, but did not dare say, that their behaviour toward me had been in stark contrast to the Texas state motto, which is “Friendship.” But I took a few deep breaths and I had to say, “I am the Mayor of Shitsville, if you do not like it then you are welcome to leave.”
And they did leave. Every single one. It was going to be too too awkward having me as mayor when they didn’t want me, and the goldenness, the absolute sunshine of Roger Shitsville was still lingering in the whorehouse, the saloon, the Nintendo arcade, like the blended scent of whisky and myrtle on a Texas summer evening.
So I sat on the front steps of the Courthouse and watched them all leave.
I sat there for a very long time. I saw the last blazing saddle wink out on the horizon line, the dust from the wheels of the last wagon disappear into the foothills.
Shitsville was absolutely empty. A tumbleweed rolled past.
I thought about burning it down. No one would miss it. But it is best not to burn your bridges. Besides, Roger would have to be buried there.
After I buried Roger I pilfered 250, 000 US dollars from the Shitsville treasury and I packed my bag and put a picture of Roger in my locket and I left too. When you get to the border of Texas on Route 66, you will see some arsehole has put this sign, “COME BACK AGAIN.”
That is why I am in Monroeville, Alabama and flying out tomorrow.
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