Copyright ©2011 Christmas Redemption- Paty Jager
She stepped around Floyd, happy his hands were busy holding the keg. No matter how many times she told him to keep his hands to himself, he always grabbed at her when they were in the storage room.
She took a deep breath, pasted on a smile, and entered the eye-watering smoke hanging head height in the saloon. The crowd was large for mid-week, mid-day. A train must be stalled. Some dressed in wool suits of salesmen, while others wore the dark suits of railroad men.
“Over here, girl!”
And then there was the local crowd in wool coats and trousers, flannels, and work boots. She grit her teeth and sauntered over to the card table in the corner.
Wesley Trainer held court at the faro table just like any other day and just like any other day, he swatted her bottom. “Bring me a bottle and a glass for my newest friend.”
Tessa looked at the small stack of money in front of Wesley’s newest friend and knew why the gambler bought him a drink. She nodded and headed back to the bar. An arm reached out looping around her waist.
“You’re pretty. How about we go get better acquainted upstairs?” The man’s liquor drenched breath made her gag, and she shoved off his lap.
“I serve drinks. That all.” She hurried to the bar and avoided that table on her way back to the card table.
“You know, honey. All you have to do is say the word and I’ll take you away from all this.” Wesley’s soft spoken words fluttered over her ear as she leaned passed him to place the glass on the table for the down-on-his-luck fellow. It wasn’t the first time he’d offered. He wasn’t bad to look at. Straight blonde hair, a dapper mustache, and young enough to not be revolting for a marriage prospect, but that was the problem, he didn’t want marriage. He just wanted to haul her around while he gambled.
“No thanks. Next time you come through here, I’ll be gone.” She took his money and moved on to the next table looking for refills. Her day was just starting and her feet already hurt and her heart weighed heavier than one of the brass spittoons sitting at each end of the bar.