The Villain

         Jack reloaded his six-shooter and looked over at Bill.  Bill was sitting on the floor, he held a pistol in his right hand, his other hand was pressed against a bullet wound on the left side of his lower stomach, blood was slowly pumping out.

         “You alright?” Jack asked.

         “I’ll live,” Bill lied.

         Jack slowly peered out of a broken window, scanning the number of Murphy’s men still standing.  Jack quickly ducked back down as bullets came whizzing through the window, splintering wood from the windowpane and shattering pieces of glass that were still struggling to hang on for dear life.

         “How many?” asked Bill.

         “Seven, including Murphy.  There are two men on the balcony of the saloon, two men to the left, hiding behind the horse trough, two men to the right, using posts as cover, and Murphy is standing in the middle of the street.”  Jack brushed the hair off of his face with his free hand and stuck it behind his ear.  He placed his head against the wall.  “He has Katy.”

         Bill winced and coughed, blood trickling down his lower lip.

         “Hey, Jack…” Murphy taunted.  “I’ve got your little whore here.  Why don’t you come out and say ‘hi’?”  His taunting brought a snicker to his men’s faces.  “Come on, Jack.  Haven’t enough people died already?  It’d be a shame to waste a bullet on your precious little whore.”

         Jack and Bill sat in silence.  Jack’s mind was in a whirl, devising a plan.  “Bill, you take the three on the right.  I’ll take the three on the left.  Leave Murphy to me.”

         “Alright Jack, say when.”

         Jack stood up, twirled his gun, and placed it back in his holster.  Bill looked at Jack in confusion.

        “When the first shot is fired, that’s your cue,” said Jack.

        Jack turned and stood in the middle of the open doorway, his hand hanging deadly close to his gun.  Murphy locked eyes with Jack, an evil grin curled up on the right side of his face.  He had a gun placed against Katy’s head, the hammer already cocked.  “Hello, Jack.”

        At that very instant, Jack knew he had made a mistake.  He could see it in Murphy’s eyes.  Murphy wasn’t using Katy to goad Jack out from hiding.  Murphy had wanted Jack to see him do it!

         Jack was the fastest gunman to ever live, but he still wasn’t fast enough.  The bullet ripped through Katy’s head and out the other side, sending pieces of skull and brain fragments showering down over the dirt road.

         On cue, Bill turned in front of the window and let three shots off in rapid secession.  Each bullet struck the intended target square in the head.  As his three victims fell dead to the ground, Bill noticed his cue laying on the ground in a pool of her own blood, her dead eyes staring blankly at Jack. 

        In shock, Bill turned to look at Jack, who hadn’t moved, his hand frozen in place by his pistol.  That was Bill’s final mistake.

        With Murphy’s eyes still locked on Jack, he let a shot off from his other gun.  The bullet caught Bill right between his eyes, sending him flying backward, crashing to the floor.  Jack stood frozen, staring at the Devil.  Murphy had just taken the last person he loved away from him. 

        A bullet ripped through Jack’s stomach, breaking him from his trance.  In the blink of an eye, Jack let four bullets fly from his gun.  All of them hit their mark: three headshots and one shoulder shot.  He wasn’t going to let the Devil leave that easily.

        The shoulder shot made Murphy take a step back to catch his balance and caused him to drop the gun he was holding on that side, but not the other gun.  He let a shot rip from his pistol, catching Jack in his left shoulder.  His shoulder swung back violently, but his feet never left their place.

        With his eyes locked on Murphy, he took a step forward.  Murphy let another bullet fly, catching Jack in the thigh.  Jack didn’t flinch.  He started walking towards the Devil, dead set on his target.

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