I almost tried to climb under the bleachers when the MC announced that Mac Ross was the EMT -Clown for the night. There was no way he would be able to see me from the arena floor because I was at the top in a dark corner. That didn’t keep me from trying to hide anyway.

He started talking to the crowd and the show began with bull riding. Mac was a good clown, having been a bull rider himself he was able to help in the chutes when the riders were having trouble with a bull. There were also two cowboys on horseback to back him up with the bulls.

When the kids came out for sheep and goat races he was a natural with them. I wondered if he was married and how many kids he had by now. It had been 9 years since I left him and never looked back. He was too fine a man to still be single.

Looking back on it now I couldn’t see why helping him raise his younger siblings had seemed like a nightmare.

Did you know Mac was the EMT-Clown at Fort Worth?

Yes

You could’ve warned me

Why? You two were always good together

TRAITOR!

LOL!

I was going to stay for the barrel racers and then I was leaving.

I was surprised to see Patty, Mac’s little sister riding. She did well for a, wow, how old was she now. 17 …. No, 18, she just turned 18. If she kept at it, she could do good on the Pro Circuit. She was next to last, so I started down the stairs to leave, that was when I got a closer look at Mac.  Man had he filled out, his back muscles were defined under his shirt, and his legs and butt looked damn good in his blue jeans. Just keep walking, just keep walking. That was going to be my new mantra.

Outside in the fresh air I remembered the MC saying that our tickets would get us into Billy Bob’s free tonight, so I headed that way.

It was a lite crowd tonight, this close to Christmas I’m sure had something to do with that. I ordered fried pickles with ranch dressing from the Honky Tonk Kitchen then a rum and Dr Pepper from a bar and found a table in a dark corner where I could see the dance floor.

The later it got the more people came in. I would guess that the rodeo was over, and they were coming here to extend the night. The house band started playing and the dancing started too.

I love to watch the couples dance, Mac and I use to dance, out in the barn to the radio. We were good together, before I walked away, even Randy thought so.

For the first few years after college I picked up any cowboy who was riding the circuit, because they knew it was just a onetime thing and didn’t try to make it something it wasn’t meant to be. But the last few years have been different, I haven’t been with anyone at all.

Mac was who I wanted, but I would never have him. How many times had I dreamed about him in my bed and how he would make me feel again.

No, I messed that up but good, and now I had a sociopath following me every where threatening to kill me.

A cowboy walked up to my table, “Hey there pretty lady, would you like to dance with this old cowboy for a while?”

I smiled my best gee thanks, that’s so sweet smile and said, “No thank you.” No reason to get his hopes up when I would just walk away.

“Okay if you change your mind I’ll be over there.”

Bless his heart but he’ll find a dance partner soon enough.

He pointed to a group of cowboys that looked like they’d been riding in the rodeo and walked back to them. One of them, a big cowboy a lot older them the others looked familiar. I froze as he looked my way and winked.  My insides turn cold as ice, he was one of her henchmen.

I looked to the dance floor again trying to look anywhere but at the table of cowboys and almost fell to the floor. Mac and Patty were dancing and looking my way. I watched in horror as they left the dance floor moving through the crowd coming my way. Time to leave. So, I slid into the darkness and made my way to the front door.

Once I was outside I went straight to the hotel. Watching behind me to make sure no one was following me.

Back to the same hotel that he and Patty will be staying in just across the hall from me. I should just drive home tonight, but I had been drinking so no driving tonight, damn it all to hell.

 

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