There is much to be found here in the attic in the dusty old trunks so vist now and then. Adios
I know of no one who has ever heard of Fletch Gideon and that may not be too unusual for many a man was born and lived his life and then died to be quickly forgotten of which I may fall to the same fate. I do think it strange though how our acquaintance came to be.
I became aware of Fletch one day while standing on the bridge that spans the Confluence of the
and Niangua River . I was looking down stream, enjoying the view when something very strange happened. The landscape changed before my eyes and I could no longer recognize the terrain as it had been only seconds before. The road snaking northward was still there, but much narrower and on the west side of it was a bottom field that stretched as far as I could see. The river flowing next to the field was wider and swifter. About a mile down the road I saw dust swirling up from it and then I could make a large high wheel wagon pulled by a team of incredibly large black horses. A lone man set on the seat. It wasn’t long and I could see the man was very tall, clothed in a brown overcoat and wearing a broad brim hat. Behind the wagon marched several men, dressed much like the man on the wagon. Astonished at what I saw I leaned forward completely overwhelmed by the bizarre possession passing along the road. After reaching the broader road where moments before had been a paved highway they turned west toward me. I could hear the loud creaking of the wagon and the footsteps of the men and stood there and waited. It wasn’t but a moment or two when the wagon came to a halt and I looked up at the man sitting in the seat. Never before have I ever seen such a specimen as he. I judged him to be at least six foot seven inches tall of middle age with the blackest eyes and hair I have ever seen in a human. His jaw was square and jutted out and his face was finely chiseled. He wore a brown great coat worn slick and shone bright in the sun. On his head pulled down over the shaggy hair, he wore a shabby wide brim brown hat also worn slick and around the hat was a hatband, a strand of rusty barbed wire. For a moment or two we said not a word, nor blinked an eye. Bennett Spring
The man suddenly rose from the seat and stepped down from the wagon and stood before me a giant. He smelled of wood smoke and old leather and offered me his hand. I readily took it and my hand disappeared in the huge grasp, but I held my own against the mighty strength of the man and he smiled.
“I am Fletch Gideon Sir,” he said in a remarkable quite voice. “I know you to be Butcher Redoak an honorable man and trust worthy. The men behind me are all that is left of my company and they are faithful and true. We have traveled far and they are weary.”
I nodded and peered up at him and said in a voice that sounded very small. I am honored to meet you Fletch Gideon, but I don’t understand why you are here and have not the faintest idea where you came from?”
Well my friend it is time I enlightened you and I suggest we go down to the river and set a spell under that big sycamore tree, “ he said and removed from the folds of the coat a slim cigar half as long as my arm.
I nodded in agreement and replied. “But the road is blocked and if someone should come along they will not be able to continue on their way.”
“Not to worry lad,” he answered. “No one will be coming along.”
And so the story of Fletch Gideon shall begin and in his own words, but before it all transpires I am wondering if there is anyone out there who might know or heard of Fletch Gideon or perhaps have a picture or illustration of him, for surely I am not the only one on this Earth who has come in contact with the fellow. I know his story of which I will soon reveal a long tale of adventure across the winding trail of time.
Fletch drew deeply on the tightly twisted cheroot and then carefully lifted the hat from his head and turned it upside down next to him. He smiled through weathered lips and leaned back against the old sycamore tree. ”I reckon I ought to start at the beginning and that be a time when I was but a pup” he said and flicked ashes into the upturned hat.