A Place so Foreign
Pa looked uncomfortable. "Mr Johnstone is buying it."
My mouth dropped. James H Johnstone was as dandified a city-slicker as you'd ever hope to meet. He'd blown into town on the weekly Zephyr Speedball, and skinny Tommy Benson had hauled his three huge steamer trunks to the cowboy hotel. He'd tipped Tommy two dollars, in Wells-Fargo notes, and later, in the empty lot behind the smithy, all the kids in New Jerusalem had gathered 'round Tommy to goggle at the small fortune in queer, never-seen bills.
"Pa, no!" I said, without thinking. I knew that if my chums ordered their fathers around like that, they'd get a whipping, but my Pa almost never whipped me.
He smiled, and stretched his thic