The Winner Is?
(Old West)

by Jennifer

Ezra watched Buck make his way out of the saloon with a thin brunette after unsuccessfully trying to entice Inez into spending the night with him. As he shuffled his deck of his cards, he found himself smiling. Buck never gives up. Tomorrow he would have a few hundred new lines prepared to win Inez over. As surely as Ezra knew that, he knew that the end result would be the same. He could picture the word nunca forming on her lips.

His dreamlike state was disturbed by the offensive sounds of a middle aged man across the saloon.

He was hooting and hollering and at the same time groping at Inez. He watched the dark haired woman unsuccessfully try to advert his attentions. Ezra wondered why no one had stepped in as of late. The town's people reluctance he understood but his fellow gun fighters, he did not. If JD or Buck had been there they would have stood up for the lady. Even Josiah or Nathan would have.

With one glance to the near by table where Vin and Chris were sitting told him that they were preoccupied with another matter. So it was up to him.

By this time, Inez had given up reasoning with the man and decided to take an alternative route.

The man was obviously just passing through and had no knowledge of the people in this town.

This was her advantage. "Senior, I married!"

"I don't see a ring?" he quipped.

"Well," she said but was interrupted by a cool southern drawl. "My dear, can I be of some assistance?"

He barely he got the words out when Inez turned to him and brushed her lips against his.

Ezra's eyes went wide with surprise then quickly he recovered and responded to her by deepening the kiss. They were lost in each other and did not notice the patrons of the saloon were now watching them.

The middle aged man laughed, "I got the point ten minutes ago."

The sound of the man's voice brought them back to reality. They slowly pulled a part as the spell was broken. Unable to say anything to each other they both retreated, Ezra to his room and Inez to behind the bar. Inez's lips were still tingling when two girls appeared before her.

"Do you think you can settle a bet for us?" the red head inquired.

Inez whispered, "I can try."

The blond smiled, "Great, we were wondering who the better kisser was, Mr. Wilmington or Mr. Standish?"

Inez slightly blushed and said, "Let's just say cards aren't Mr. Standish's only talent."

As Inez walked into the back room she heard the red head remark to her friend, "Told you so, pay up."


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