Drabbles submitted by members of the HC-FanFic list for a challenge in Feb 2007





Kate’s drabble: Home


'The glare of the summer sun causes the young man's eyes to squint against it, and the scorching heat of the day dries his mouth yet dampens his brow with sweat.

Hot, thirsty and unutterably weary, Blue Cannon seeks a small patch of shade in which to rest awhile.

Sinking down in the shadow of an overhanging rock, he drinks deep from his canteen. The water is tepid but enough to slake his thirst.

This land is unforgiving, barren and savage, but Blue smiles as he looks around him with pride. This is High Chaparral land. This is his home.'




Cathy’s drabble: In Charge - A double drabble (200 words)

"Saddle my horse," said John Cannon.

"Sure, John," Buck muttered.

Watching his brother's retreating back, Buck felt a surge of anger. Not even a thank you. Just once it'd be nice to be the one in charge and let big brother be the one taking orders. "Fat chance," he mumbled, grabbing his brother's gear off the top rail. Some things never changed.

By time the horse was ready, John returned with saddle bags and bedroll slung over his shoulders. These he tied to the cantle of his saddle before mounting. "Until I get back, you're in charge," he said and rode away.

Buck stared after his brother. What was this? No explanation? Not even a time he'd be back? No orders to carry out? No warnings? No "watch out for Blue", "mind your manners in the house", "I expect to find the cattle where they belong, not scattered from here to
Mexico", or some other such admonition?

"Hey, Buck! You ready to go?" someone yelled.

Turning to see Joe and several of the men mounted and waiting at the far end of the corral, Buck stood a little taller. He was in charge. The sooner they understood that the better!




Ross’ drabble: All In A Day’s Work


A glint of sunlight on metal is seen among the rocks. A shout, a shove, and Mano is struck by a bullet meant for Buck.

Dos amigos ride double, in a race back to the ranch.

Horses are saddled. Cinches are snugged. Reinforcements ride out, rifles in hand.

Victoria tends her bleeding brother.

Buck high-tails it to
Tucson, to fetch the doc.

John Cannon commands his cowboy troops, as they ride boldly into battle.

The rustlers are routed.

The herd is rounded up.

The rescue party returns to The Chaparral, to find Manolito mending, in a hammock on the porch.




Tanja’s drabble: Even Tall Trees Break


Kneeling on a rock beside the creek, Blue filled his canteen with muddy water. He didn't mind working hard, but the way his Pa had been riding herd on everyone was too much even for him.

He glanced at his father who was waiting impatiently beside the horses.

"Are you ready boy?," the tall man asked.

"No," Blue thought, "I'd like to drink some of this water and rest a while before we go on." Then he noticed the fatigue in his father's face, the strong shoulders slightly bent.

"Sure, Pa," he said smiling, "Let's go."


Ginny’s drabble: For the Love of Silence

The shadows made by the pale moon could not disguise the beauty of the woman who moved into Manolito's arms. Her scent was heavenly. Shining eyes spoke
volumes, full lips caressed his ear.

She pressed velvet fingers to his lips. "Do not speak. I need no promises from you."

Ah. A perfect woman who did not want to waste time with words.

Her touch was cool and gentle as the brush of angel's wings.

Then, a burning pinch.

"Manolito!" Perlita pinched his arm again. "You have not been listening to one word I've been saying. Where is the dress you promised me?"


Ginny’s second drabble: Untitled

John Cannon can out-bellow any man west of Kansas, Sam Butler is thinking.

Work has come to a standstill while the boss and his brother argue again.  Sam tries to imperceptibly edge out of sight, away from words that grate. It doesn't even matter what the fight is about. The loud words are always the same.

His eyes instinctively search out his own brother. Joe touches the black bruise under his eye and grins.

The Butlers know how to settle an argument. There is never any of this yelling and name calling. Just fists. Who ever is left standing is right.