There’s only one thing that’ll make a
man stand up and pay attention in this town . . .
“No . . . you can’t do that, Burk.”
Inwardly cursing his rashness, Macbride looked at her woodenly and said;
“What are you talking about?”
Still shaking her head, she stepped toward him.
“What you’re planning to do. The thing that brought you to Newton.”
He put on his hat and picked up the shotgun from the desk.
“I came here to stop a swarm of trail-crazy Texas cowboys from running this town up a tree and cutting it out from under, just like I did in Mobeetie.”
“You’re going blind, aren’t you, Burk?”
“I am not.”
“You’re going blind and you think you’ve failed — failed to find a woman you can love, failed to make a success of yourself . . . I can see it so clearly now.”
“See what?” Macbride demanded, in spite of himself.
“Why you came, of course.” Her voice held a note of wonder. “You came hoping that some gun-happy cowboy will be too fast. You came here to die.”