This story is an orphan – that is, the writer has not been active in the fandom for a long time, and the story has been rescued from the old, defunct Yahoo groups. So that we don’t lose the story entirely, we’re storing it here.
However the original author still owns this story. Should they reconnect with the fandom at some point, we will naturally respect whatever they want to do with their story.
Word count 1,666
Johnny had been hanging around this town longer and had made friends with three other orphaned boys. He enjoyed being a boy and felt a connection with them. They would run around having fun and acting like young fifteen year olds would do. There were times when the local sheriff would intervene but when he realized one of them was Johnny Madrid, he would back away.
One day a stranger rode into town and checked into the hotel for the night. He had been on the road for several weeks. He ordered dinner and a drink of brandy. After dinner, he walked outside and lit his pipe. He witnessed four teenage boys sneaking around and looking through the general store window. They would throw a rock inside and quickly hide as they saw the angry owner yelling at them. The boys were laughing and laughing until they heard a loud voice from behind, “Boys if you don’t stop it right now, I will inform your parents of the mischief you are causing.”
The boys looked at each other and replied, “Please mister we didn’t mean it. We were just having fun.” Suddenly, one by one they burst out laughing and moved on to other mischief.
The stranger went inside the store to talk with the owner who refused to file a complaint. The sheriff told the stranger he was having trouble controlling those four boys because one of them was dangerous if provoked.
The following morning there was a raucous in the street that caused people to step outside including the stranger. Three boys were once again causing mischief. One boy was standing in the background watching as his friends were going wild shooting and scaring the horses away.
The sheriff approached the boys and tried to get them to stop. They just laughed and continued. The stranger decided to intervene. He approached the boys and in a powerful voice shouted, “Enough! You boys stop it right now.” The boys stopped laughing and turned to face the stranger. “Boys you are going to go and round up those horses and bring them back here and then you are going to correct all of the damage you have been causing.”
“Sure mister whatever you say. Only not today because we are very busy.” “Yeah, very busy.” “Move on mister.” Each of the boys replied. The stranger grabbed the three boys and asked the local people to help him. They looked at the boy standing in the background and quickly left. The stranger managed to hold on to two boys as he bend them over and spanked them. The third boy fled.
The stranger looked around for the boy that had been watching him in the background but the boy was gone. The towns people were impressed with the stranger. They told him stories of daily mischief caused by the four boys but he was also warned not to confront Johnny Madrid.
He rode out of town the next morning putting behind the stories of the mischievous boys. He smiled as he felt content that he had managed to spank two of them.
The sun was starting to go down and he decided to bed down for the night. He was preparing his bed roll when he felt a gun on his back. “We have unfinished business old man.” he heard a voice. “Don’t turn around or I will kill you.”
“What do you want from me?” he asked. “An apology for my friends and then I will decide whether you live or die.” he heard a voice reply.
“Listen, I don’t condone mischievous behavior and those spankings were well deserved.” he firmly stated as he turned to face the boy. The boy did not move or show any sign of fear. He slowly placed his gun down and asked, “Do you have kids?” “I have two sons who I lost when they were babies.” the stranger answered. “Mister don’t mess with us because the next time I will kill you.” he said as he stared in the stranger’s eyes. The stranger nodded his head and breathed a sigh of relieve as he saw the boy disappear into the wooded area. The stranger rode home to his ranch and soon forgot the encounter with Johnny Madrid.
Johnny had departed and moved on to a different town. He had accepted several jobs that led him toward California.
A year later, Johnny rode into a town and entered the saloon for a drink of tequila. He sat down in a corner table with the wall on his back. He pulled his hat down and relaxed as he observed several men enter and sit themselves down. He was getting ready to leave when a familiar face was standing at the saloon door. The stranger entered and headed to the bartender. He listened to the conversation. “Have you seen my son, Scott?” “No, Mr. Lancer.”
The stranger left. Johnny exited the saloon and took another long look at that stranger. “Well, well what do you know. That is my old man, Murdoch Lancer.” he said to himself. Out of curiosity Johnny decided to follow Murdoch Lancer. He was surprised when he heard, “Pa, were you looking for me?” Johnny turned around and saw Murdoch embrace a boy a little older than himself. “You must be Scott his lost son?” Johnny said out loud and watched both Scott and Murdoch stare at him. He quickly disappeared into the back alley.
Murdoch felt his face flush and became light-headed. “Someone help me get my father to the doctor!” shouted Scott. The doctor examined Murdoch and told his son to take him home.
Finally after a long rest Murdoch opened his eyes and found Scott at his side. “Are you feeling better sir? Have you seen that boy before?” Murdoch’s eyes widened, “He is your brother, Johnny.” He tried to get up but was held back by Scott. “Murdoch you lay still, I will go look and bring Johnny back.”
Scott rode into town and asked around for information about a young teenage boy who he said was his little brother. No one had seen him. Scott decided to return to the ranch to check on his father.
He went up the stairs and slowly opened the door. A young boy was standing at the foot of the bed. “Old man why didn’t you want me? Was there only room for one son in your life?” he heard the boy ask. He slowly approached and found himself facing a gun aimed at his heart. “Johnny I have been everywhere looking for you. Murdoch send me to find you, brother.” he replied and continued to approach.
“Stay away from me. I am not your brother.” replied a soft menacing voice.
“Put that gun away boy before I take it from you!” Murdoch shouted. Johnny turned around and saw Murdoch glare at him. “I am leaving old man.” Johnny replied. “No you are not.” stated Scott as he crossed his arms.
“Do you know who I am?” questioned Johnny as he looked at both Scott and his father. “My son.” Murdoch replied. Johnny glared at him, “Do not mess with me old man.”
“Please son, hear me out. I did not know you were my son when we met a year ago. I have been searching for you for years. I love you Johnny. I am your papa.” he implored. Johnny showed no signs of emotion and turned to leave. “Your mother Maria was my wife and she took you from me and left when you were two years old. I need you son. I have always loved you.”
Johnny stared into his eyes, shook his head and replied, “It’s too late for me to change. I have been on my own too long and I do not need you anymore.”
“I need and love you my little boy. I can’t let you walk away from my life.” Murdoch pleated as tears streamed down his face.
“Johnny, I am your brother Scott. I was taken away from our father as well but I returned home last year. He sent for me and has continued searching for you.” Scott said. “Johnny both our father and I love you and need you here at home.”
“I don’t need you! Stay away from me.” he shouted. He reached for the door but was grabbed by Scott. “Stop struggling little brother!” he commanded. Johnny stopped and glared at him and slowly replied as he stared directly into his eyes, “I will kill you.” Scott stared back and stated, “I will spank you first little brother for disobeying my orders. No, you cannot have your gun back either.” He placed Johnny down on the chair next to their father’s bed. “You move from that chair boy and you will find yourself across my knee.” he firmly stated.
Johnny’s glare increased in intensity as he looked at his brother. “Son, we love you too much to allow you to leave. We want to take care of you.” Murdoch stated. Johnny’s glare remained on Scott, “I do not care what you want old man!” he said through clenched teeth. “I should have killed you when I had that chance.”
“Keep it up boy and I will keep my promise”, Scott replied as he approached Johnny. Johnny looked at both his brother and father. “Why should I believe you care? No one ever did before but my mama.” he spoke very softly. “We love you!” both Scott and Murdoch answered with a huge smile.
“Well boy , are you going to stay and give us a chance?” asked Scott with a grin. “I will try it but do not order me around.” stated Johnny.
The stranger became a father to Johnny. Johnny learned not to play mischievous games anymore because he had a strict father as well as a bossy older brother who was not intimidated with his ‘Madrid’ glare.
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