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Echo of Another Day (Part 2)

Posted on Wed Oct 11th, 2017 @ 11:29pm by Jess Harper
Edited on on Sat Oct 28th, 2017 @ 9:04pm

Episode: The Legacy
Time & Location: Early Evening, Sunday, July 11, 1875; Blackbird Lodge, Lost Lake Ranch, Montana
Tags & OOCs: Part 2 of 5

Jess walked along the downstairs hall and a short cross hall at the end. Curious, he turned to his right and opened the door, walking into the room that had been Chance's and, later, Chance's and Regina's. At least it had been until after the deaths of their parents in 1868. The room felt a bit sterile to Jess although it was nicely decorated. It just had that hard-to-define not used feel to it. He shook his head and exited the way he had come walking the short distance to the other door.

He found a large tin of matches on the mantel over the fireplace. It took a couple to light the lamps. For a moment, he considered lighting the wagon-wheel style fixture that hung from the ceiling, but then decided it was too much effort to lower it, light all its lamps, and raise it again. He'd never much cared for the overhead lighting, felt it was too harsh and bright. The bedroom furniture was the same as when he'd lived there. A large, oak sleigh bed, two side tables with polished marble tops, a large dresser with a mirror, a chest of drawers, and a small oak gun stand and rack - one he had made in shop class at school. His old wardrobe was gone, probably stored out in one of the barns. Two rocking chairs with ottomans now sat in front of the fireplace, and a small sofa was set under the big window that overlooked the rear of the house. To the left of that was a door that led out to the room's private terrace.

The chair and ottoman cushions and the pillows on the leather sofa were all quilted in the prairie star pattern. The bed's piecemeal quilt was also done in the same pattern. The colors ranged from a pale sky blue to dark midnight blue resting on a pristine white background. No curtains or drapes were hanging over the windows which suited Jess. He preferred the clean look of the wooden shutters.

The biggest change was the addition of two doors to the right of the bed. The first one, set into the wall a few feet to the right of the headboard, led into a small closet. Small though it was, it was still far larger than Jess needed. He didn't have much in the way of personal belongings to store. To the right of that and facing toward the front of the house was the door that led into the private bathroom and water-closet, along with another, even larger clothes closet.

With the tour of the bathroom and privy complete, Jess returned to the bedroom and quickly unpacked his saddlebags and bedroll, storing them neatly away in the smaller closet. He placed his rifle in the gun rack, then put his clean shirts, jeans and other clothes away in the dresser, leaving out a change for after he'd cleaned up. After enjoying a shave with the readily available warm water, Jess turned and eyed the large clawfoot tub and the nearby standup shower. The Shermans had showers out back of their house for use in the summer and Kate had warned Jess that the hot water was unreliable in the showers here. Still, he did not want to take the time to draw a bath so stripped off his dirty trail clothes and stepped into the shower, closing the half-door behind him. The operation appeared to be simple and straightforward. There were three pull chains, one for hot water, one for cold water, and one that pulled both of the other two, allowing a mix of hot and cold.

Taking a deep breath, Jess grabbed the third chain, managing not to yelp too loudly when icy cold water rushed in a torrent from the showerhead. Still, it felt good to wash the dust and grit off, despite nearly freezing himself several times and grabbing the hot water chain by mistake once. At least he was clean and presentable.

Jess grabbed one of the large thick towels and dried himself off. He then returned to the bedroom to don clean blue jeans and a dark blue bib-front shirt. A few minutes later, he'd polished his worn boots, blew out the lamps, closed the shutters and crossed to open the door to the hall. Jess paused for a moment and looked back into the room where he'd spent a good part of his childhood. It was going to take awhile to get used to everything again, to being home, and to being in charge. He sighed as he closed the door, "God, Chance, I hope you knew what you were doing. Hope I'm up to the job you left to me."

 

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