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Liam Lloyd-Hughes

We was at a saloon, Bill and I. Rowdy place, near falling apart, middle of nowhere. Decent folk though. Buncha drunkards but decent. Anyway, like always the dumb son of a bitch had drunk himself into a fightin’ mood and I wasn’t gonna entertain him. We ain’t kids no more.
            Bill had his eyes set on this English fella, new ‘round here, drinkin’ at the bar alone. I noticed him pretty early in the evening, suit like that sticks out round here. Kept staring at his pocket watch. Bill only noticed him after the fifth or sixth jigger of whiskey. So he waltzes on over and manages to slur:
            ‘Where you come from, partner?’
            And without looking up from his watch he says, real sophisticated-like: ‘Me? I come and go, friend. Don’t you worry about me.’
            Now Bill leans in closer and asks him again, breathing liquor right into his face as he spoke. ‘I ain’t your friend, mister, and I don’t take too kindly to folk telling me what I need worryin’ about, so get your ass outta this bar or we can settle this right now.’
            This fella lets out a sigh and rises from his barstool like a father about to beat some sense into his boy. Probably made Bill all the more pissed off, our pa loved his belt. Wore it with pride and enjoyed whipping us with it even more.
            As you can imagine, Bill’s steamin’ from the ears so he lunges his arm back to sock him in the jaw but this fella just grabs him and tosses him onto his back like he weighed nothin’. Now Bill’s not a small guy so this was a sight to see. I dunno if the years of drinking had finally caught up with him or just the surprise of this lanky English feller dropping him on his ass but Bill just laid on the ground for a while.
            Strangest part though was the fella tipped the barman and left town as quickly as he’d arrived here.
            Shame. I owe him a beer.