When It Rains

October 25, 1896
Anna Cushing

The first real storm of the season came. You could feel it tingling in the air from the early hour of the morning and it was no surprise when the first bolts of lightning flashed across the sky. Everything turned gray and black. Rain drops fell free, landing in giant drops creating instant puddles in the dirt path to the stable.

I hurried along with a napkin full of carrots for Poseidon. My clothing was drenched by the time I entered the safety of the stable. The horses stirred as the thunder boomed in the distance. I shook from the wet and the cold sending a spray of water from my hair.

I thought I was alone when I started feeding Poseidon his treats. I was wrong. I heard the footstep behind me and nearly jumped out of my skin as I spun around to see who was there. I expected Mr. Carrington or maybe one of the girl, but not a stranger.

She was dressed in black from head to toe. A hood covered her head and she kept her face in its shadow. She seemed both young and old at the same time as though life had aged her more quickly than it should have. I could not see her eyes but I could feel them burning into me. Her voice was soft, like a whisper when she spoke.

“You shouldn’t trust her.” She said.

The accent was familiar but in my startled state I did not place it straight away.

“Who?” I asked.


“What does she matter to you?”

“She’ll betray you, like she has betrayed everyone she has ever known.” She said.

Then it connected. It was Sarah’s accent but she was clearly not Sarah.

“Who are you?”


“What do you want from me?” I asked feeling frustrated.

“This is for you.” She said.

She handed me a folded up newspaper. At the top it said Denver Post, May 31, 1896. I unfolded it to a headline reading, Woman Shoots And Kills Sheriff. I returned my attention to the woman in front of me.

“I don’t understand?” I said.

“Read it and you will. I must go, but we shall meet again, Miss Cushing.” She said.

She turned away and for just a moment the lantern light revealed part of her face. It was horribly scarred and I gasped. Her hand pulled her hood tighter and she hurried out of the stable and into the darkness without a further word. I wished I could have offered her some comfort or sympathy but something tells me she would not have wanted either.

Alone again, I read the story. It was about Sarah and her father. In black and white the facts were told, but they must be missing something because the courts do not let murderers go free. Should I tell Sarah about my encounter or should I wait and see what will happen next? I am torn but maybe the scarred stranger is correct, maybe I should not trust anyone at all.

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