The sound they make as they collide answers the question what sound does a tree make if it falls in the forest and nobody hears it. The two of them race twords the ground giving providing nature’s weakest force with the steroid of momentum. Fantasticly, Link’s head found a rock to break his fall. He couldn’t be certain, because there is all sorts of pain everywhere but he could swear that he could of felt an acorn get chucked at his head, “Doesn’t that motherfucker need to save those things for winder, god damnit”
The cowboy staggering to his feet drawls in a Texan accent, “What did you just say to me?”
Link could of sworn he had a more southern accent the last time they spoke, alibet it was briefly and it ended with physical violence so it doesn’t really matter all that much, he has much more important things to do, “Look cowboy, I’m sure we have all sorts of unfinished business because I shit all over your honor or something, but now isn’t the time. Hey have you seen the hippy girl I run around with by any chance?”
He gives Link the flat dead stare of a manniquen, who’s been left out in the sun to long so the paint that even the dead lifeless stare has started to fade. There is something truly fundamentally creepy about this man Link concludes, and it isn’t just the fact that he is wearing spurrs, “I recockon you best be answering my question first before you start askin some of your own.”
First it is important to note the agonizing slowness that he speaks each and every word. By halfway though the sentence Link has thought about leveling him 6 times with different punches or combination of punches, “What question, what is going on, damnit cowboy I really don’t have time for this”. He goes to move around the cowboy but Link finds his shirt suddenly grabbed and him being shoved to the ground violently. Not wanting to damage his new ring Link twists his body and ends up belly flopping on the ground, knocking the wind out of him.
“You aren’t going anywhere until you’ve answered my question”
Weezing Link nearly fails at trying to get up, “No seriously cowboy I have no idea what you are talking about”
“Stop calling me cowboy”. Face red with anger, veins bulging on the side of his head Link knew that he was in the prescense of madness. Madness that makes Alex look sane and normal. Fists balled, wieght shifted on the back leg, Link saw all the sighns and this old boy is looking for a scrap. That’s fair though, last time they met he did get thrown rather unceremoniously into some bushes.
He didn’t want to fight the Cowboy part of it was the promise he made to Hippy, part of it is the fact that the Cowboy seems to be pretty much insane, most of it though has to do with the fact that he still hasn’t recovered from two days ago, putting his hands up Link does his best to defuse the situation, “Alright well if you want me to not call you cowboy then I think it is high time you cough up your name”
He stops almost as if he has to think about it, “Duke, my name is Duke”
Keeping his hands up Link continues, “Alright then duke” he couldn’t bring himself to pronounce the upper case D, “I know we got off to a bad start. I know this because I was the one that made it a bad start. You were just trying to be a good guy and honestly were our posissions reversed I would of done the same thing, so I’m sorry” he puts his hands down and starts working at the ring. If he can get the damn thing off he could just toss the cowboy aside and be on his way. Of all the things he has time for, he has time for this the least. However, she made it so he couldn’t get the thing off very easily, clever girl. “Anyway so duke let’s just let by gones be by gones and move on with our lives okay?”. Getting to his feet Link sticks out his hand and gives his best shot at a friendly smile, which isn’t friendly enough as the cowboy takes a swing at him. A big slow swing that has so much wind up time to it that you’d really have to want it, if you got hit by the thing. Nimbly dodging to the left then to the right, Link ducks and weaves past a variety of attempts to hit him, all of which end up being drastic failures. After a bit Link tries again, “Look come on cow- I mean duke. People will see us and-” The cowboy is getting faster, and Link is in no mood to piss the hippy off any more than she already is at him, “Alright look you see this ring? I made a promise, to the hippy no more fighting. So please come on I really got to find her now, I’ll take my beating from you later, deal?”. The cowboy doesn’t respond, he just keeps trying, knowing that he’ll get in on Link’s defenses eventually. He is like the little steam engine, he just keeps going, and now that he’s gaining momentum Link can hardly keep up. Seeing the power behind those punches too means that if he doesn’t keep up he might not be able to take more than a few of the things. The cowboy packs a serious left hook. Link gets a good look at it as it sails just milimeters away from him.
“You still haven’t answered my question”. He’s shouting now, and yet his motions aren’t that of an out of control mad man. Instead they are that of a an automaton. Each move is carefully calculating, planned, and thus telegraphed accordingly. He sounds furious but it almost seems more like a show than an actual person, like he is putting on a show of a man dressed as a cowboy pretending to be mad. The whole thing seems like a bizarre fascmile of real like, only with real punches that will more than likely hurt like a ton of bricks.
Dodging a particularly well executed combo, and on the verge of exasperation Link tries again with the ring and a distration, “Seriously Cowboy I don’t know what the fuck you are talking about”. Backing up as he says it he hopes to put some distance between him and the spurr wearing man, in tight blue jeans, in a country western shirt, wearing a bright white mother fucking cowboy hat who insists on not being called cowboy. He lets out a yell and charges at him. As he side steps him, Link wonders idley how easy is it to run in cowboy boots. Those things have heels on them after all. The hopes that he would trip and fall lay trampled under those very cowboy boots, and the squirrel seems to be off doing its actual job of gathering nuts instead of being a dick, leaving just Link a cowboy, with nothing but a ring standing between them.
The cowboy’s getting ready to run at him again and this time Link vows that the ring can go fuck itself because he really does have more important things to do than to avoid beating up retards, when Sara’s voice rings out as clear as a fight bell “Cowboy knock it off”. Then from literally off to the side like she is popping out from behind some random piece of scenery there’s Sara, she doesn’t even have a bruise much to Link’s disappointment. However, all arbitrary feelings, thoughts, and desires immediately become focused when the Hippy steps out onto the scene next to her.
“Fuck” Link thinks to himself trying to fight down multiple waves of panic. There is no way in hell that this could possibly be good.
The cowboy, looking a lot like a dog who’s just been scolded scuttles over to Sara’s side and looks subservient. Now more than ever Link wants to kick his ass in. The Hippy looks as if she is going though a wide range of conflicting emotions at the moment and eventually she leaves Sara’s side and walks over to Link. It was then that he got the strangest feeling, like that some how, somewhere the battle lines had been drawn and that he is now part of some incredibly vast war being fought between the hippy and Sara. He tries to shake it off but ultimately he is unable to.
Smiling wickedly, “Sorry I bumped into your friend not to long ago, she seemed very up set. I sent my cowboy friend here to find you but you see he has a rather one track mind and you must of done something to distract him”. Link seriously wonders where the hell she it is she gets her nerve. After risking all their lives on some fool plan that he couldn’t even begin to understand here she is, in the flesh cajoling them after what she tried to do just the other night.
Link leans over to the hippy girl, “Look I’m sorry about this morning, I can explain it all to you in a bit right now we just need to get the hell away from her”.
The hippy nods slowly then says outloud so that everyone can hear, “It’s okay Link, I know why you were doing it, I can understand I guess. I mean if someone I knew killed himself right in front of me, I guess I would mark the occation somehow too. I don’t know I guess with everything that happened, and all the stangeness of these past few weeks I kind of jumped to the wrong conclusion, a conclusion that is perfectly logical”
Before Link can wreck things, Sara jumps in, “Me personally I almost forgot about Seymour. That poor crazy kid. I can’t believe how that turned out you know? Killing himself like that. Of course you always were a sentimental bastard when it comes right down to it”
The Hippy nods, “Ordinarly I wouldn’t believe anything she says, I mean after everything that happened I would be an idiot to trust her” but she pauses, and looks up at Link, eyes glistening in the sunlight, with a faint, searching smile on her face, “But you didn’t hit that cowboy looking kid. I mean if you really were trying to kill yourself, if you really thought you were going to die, then why would you care so much about a silly little promise you’ve made to me? I’ve seen you hurt people, it isn’t so much that you do it. That isn’t what really bothers me. It is the utter lack of remorse through which you do it. You don’t even enjoy it, you know? You just do it, the same way someone does something like take out the garbage or mow the lawn. It is the way your face just sort of goes blank and you fade away, then there was that time you really did” She shakes her head, “Never mind. It isn’t important. What is important is that now I believe that deep down you really are a good person, because not only did you not hit the cowboy, but you even tried to fall in such a way so that the ring wouldn’t be damaged. There is much I don’t know about you, and to be honest, I don’t really believe Sara’s story but at least, at least you did this one thing right, even if you only did it for me”. She gives him a short awkward little hug, “Oh jesus I need to be in class in five minuts. Link I’ll meet up with you later, Sara I never want to see you again” and with that she scurries off with an added bounce in her step, a great wieght having been lifted from her shoulders.
Link watches as the hippy girl as she runs off, “Hey Sara is your cowboy’s name really Duke?”
He goes to do, something but is interrupted by one of Sara’s crisp authoritative hand motions that could make a king apoligise before getting her a sandwhich, “No he told me once, I don’t remember what it is though. Not that it matters. So how are things between you and your hippy girl, figure out her name yet?” The glare Link throws at Sara would vapoize a lesser human being, but Sara being Sara just smiles instead, “We should go back to being the fabulous team we once were. The cowboy is good and all but he’s no you. Of course it looks like I don’t have to do anything else to come between the two of you, that will fall apart all, on its own, which is good I have mid terms to deal with. So when she leaves you for the monsterouse sack of shit that you are come and find me, I’ll make it all go away”. She blows a kiss as she walks off with a bounch in her step that’s reminiscent of her days of being the most popular girl in school, student counsil, quaterback banging, cheerleader type. How the hell does something like that happen? Link knew the answer though. It happens the same way everything else does. He isn’t one for delusions of grandure but its hard not to believe you aren’t the cernter of the universe when all the people around you end up as twisted versions of themselves. Who knows the hippy might be out there somewhere maturbating with a log of sausage while rolling around on an ant hill or something. With that Link headed off on his own errands, and made a mental note to himself to either die or get into therapy.