JB did not like to have bad thoughts of Lorna at all, he never did. He had given her many more chances than any other good Tracker he had to deal with, and why she was stuck in his head like a completely rusty nail but he did not let it surrender. He liked to think that he had torn her off to something, written in a little way and elsewhere, that would mark her destiny. JB believed, that the comparison with Gary Cooper in The Hanging Tree was not so blurred. First, because some Westerners still liked it, because there was so much out there, signs so tiny that they could not even be visible to certain beetles, which Lorna had the duty to decipher. If it had been for him, he would take it long before, in short, to say, he would start the tracks when she was still a child, or something like that. There was something in her that escaped her all. When he was a boy it was a feeling of holding a horse in the lazo, but not having done the nod to tighten around the horse’s neck. It was a feeling, though he usually hated that kind of words. For him everything must be concreteness and dedication. The reading of the tracks was. But she had looked at her before in the picture and then through the lenses of her big glasses, and had – yet- the feeling she could be up to. It was about finishing it, everything here. Of course, it would take time, and after all it was some investment, but he would do it. And so she had taken it with her. He had thought of everything, or perhaps somehow, he always wanted it. The more she was holding her and the more she understood that there was much, much to sift. In short, it was a workmanship, it was like training a dog who until the day before was in the midst of coyotes. He was not exactly younger, and certainly the distances, and some weights, had led him to slow down every movement, to weigh everything. Did she make her cry? You can bet that he did. She had eradicated everything she had learned, in her own right, almost right, and had thrown her away. She had looked at her for a long time without telling her anything. He had forced her to lie down on the ground to see it better.He had left her alone at night and then even at dawn, and then beyond, because she had to learn. Just because she had to learn the art of tracking properly. And there was much more. Would he  help her? No, no, it should not be helped at all. She had to understand that each step would cost her a lot. To get people out of hell is sweating, he repeated it repeatedly. Yet she had something she had not found in anyone else. In short, something unusual, unpopular. Discontent was a term he personally hated. And he hated it because it was all that others had turned out to be. What had passed through her head when she realized she was receiving worse treatment than others was hard to say. It seemed as if they always fly large birds over her head, as she was invited to spend hours beside a trace. – It is the only way to learn – he repeated it repeatedly. His voice, that clenched passage he had never thought of correcting simply because – he did not care at all – had become somehow the passage of hours, and more than an hourglass, or an odometer, or call it as you would like, seemed like a flush Of a windmill that is still incredibly still standing.

We can only tell you that he had decided it was worth it. That was what kept thinking even when he felt more tired than her, yet the light did not dare to drop. Those minutes passed under the sun straight, an implacable sky you would have said, under which many others before and after had given up. It was just like driving a wagon on its shoulders that lost all four wheels, yet there is nothing else to say about this. Then, suddenly – perhaps not too far beyond his expectations – she had become like a small mechanism. He liked to say she saw, recorded and followed, not even a videocassette player of the latest model or something like that. That evolution was like to put wings, it was a no longer crawling. In fact, she was making her crawl, and she liked to see her do it – it was application, devotion, it was mud on the eyelids. It was to identify every small sign and call it by its name; and yet, it was to follow uninterruptedly, because of that, of an unstoppable pursuit, like the scalloping of the hooves that squeaked on the earth for centuries. Or at least, something like that. Each time he thought of the tracks, he was thinking of something poetic, but he could not give a precise name. A moment before he heard that he had ready-made words, the right ones, and it seemed to him that no one was able to describe exactly what he was feeling, and for years now. She was with her with the same story. Maybe he deserved some encouragement, but his lips were worse than an extreme period of drought. So she just looked at her and turned her head on the other side.

[All Rights to Kyt Walken, 2017]

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