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A Family Again by Jennifer B.

Word Count 702

3rd in the A New Family Series

Ratings: PG for mild language

Scene: Murdoch in the Great Room, sipping Scotch.


So they’re home. Both of them. And they came on the same day. Now that was a surprise. I didn’t expect that. I knew they were both coming, but together? I didn’t handle it right, I know. But how was I to be prepared for both of them? 

Scott looks so much like Catherine. I still miss her. It’s been over 25 years, too. Time heals, I know, but seeing him—seeing her in him—brings it all back. And he’s so much like her, too. Calm. Reserved. Deliberate. Just like Catherine. 

And Johnny! Boy, does he have his mother’s temper, all right! And I’ll be damned if I didn’t tell him, too. Now she was a feisty one—all spitfire and passion. Oh, the passion. I bet he’s got that as well. 

Courage. They both have that. I told them I wanted their arms and legs and guts. Well, I’ve seen their guts already. And even the insides of Johnny’s back. That was more than I wanted to see there. Theresa said he was coming back to us on that wild ride and it sure seems so. But wasn’t Scott something, too? Didn’t he fire that rifle with deadly accuracy? I’m proud of him; I’m proud of both of them for saving the ranch.

Now we’re all partners. I wanted that, I know, but do I really want to give away two-thirds of what I’ve worked for all these years? Well, too late for that kind of thinking now. It’s done. But I still call the tune. And I plan to; they both have a lot to learn about ranching. 

Scott more so, but I have confidence in him. I know it will be hard, transitioning from Boston high society to hard working rancher, but he’ll do it. He’s got what it takes. He proved that in the military; he withstood that regime so he can handle this, once he learns the ropes.

Johnny, I’m not so sure about. He’s used to the easy way, with his Colt. I’ll have to ride him harder, just to keep him in line. He’s already told me he doesn’t like to take orders. He’ll have to learn: I give them; he follows them. It’s not that difficult to understand. But he’s young and that’s part of it.

And then there’s the third one. The one I’ve dreaded: Johnny Madrid. Not really sure what to do about that. People won’t like a gunhawk in residence, I know. Can Johnny stop being Madrid? Does he want to? Could my laughing baby boy really the killer that the Pinkerton’s reported? Has he really been living off his gun for over five years? Lord, that would make him what, 16? 17? when he started. Or younger; the Pinkertons weren’t sure. Madrid is the wild card here. 

And Theresa—sweet, naive Theresa. She accepted both of them as brothers immediately and I know that’s how she feels, but she’s impressionable. She’s young, quite young, and having two unmarried young men in the house will most likely have some effect on the girl. What will people think? Will they really think we are a family? A girl, a Boston blueblood, a gunfighter… ha, what a family!

Well, hell, we *are* a family, or we will be one day. And that’s what they’ll have to think, and if they don’t, so what? I’m the big dog around here, aren’t I? That’s got to count for something! It’ll work. I know it will. They’re back. They really are. Ahhh.

Damn, this Scotch is smooth. 


To: Needling Teresa


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