azombiewrites: (The Magnificent Seven)
[personal profile] azombiewrites
Title: Haven't Done Much to Gladden My Heart
Rating: PG
Warnings: Bad writing ahead!
Fandom: The Magnificent Seven
Genre: Hurt/Comfort
Summary: While drunk, Ezra decides to try and withdraw his mother's money from the bank.
Main Characters: Ezra, and the rest of the seven + OC's.
Disclaimers: The guys are owned by CBS, MGM, Trilogy Entertainment Group, and The Mirisch Corp.
Beta: Not betaed – written in the early days when I didn’t know what the words grammar and edit meant. *is ashamed but no longer care*
Spoilers: None.
Total Word Count: 5,268






Ezra Standish sat in the darkest corner of the saloon that he could find. In front of him sat a nearly empty bottle of whiskey. He was drunk and he knew it, he was enjoying the feeling it gave him. It also meant that his mother wouldn't come anywhere near him and that was exactly what he wanted.

Maude Standish had ruined him again and she was happy about it but he was angry with himself for not being good enough to beat his mother at her own game. He had to do something to make her proud but there was nothing left, no business and no money. Ezra Standish was broke. He didn't even have the money to buy himself a drink but Inez had allowed him to start a tab. That meant he owed someone money and he didn't like it. He only took it because he needed a drink that turned into a need to get drunk.

But Maude Standish had money; too much money and she didn't need all of it. A mother should do the decent thing and take the money from the bank where she had deposited it and give it back to her son but Ezra would be to proud to take it.

Then again, if he had any real courage he would go to the bank and remove the cash himself, if only to teach his mother a very justified lesson. He could do it if he wanted to and the alcohol in his blood stream would give him the courage he needed. When his mother discovers his practical joke, she would be proud and her heart gladdened. Of course, he would then give it back to her; he wasn't a thief. Never was and never will be no matter how desperate he became for his everyday needs. He could do manual labor; it was something that he had to resort to on other occasions.

Ezra stood up on shaky legs, straightened his necktie and jacket then moved away from his comforting sanctuary. He smiled widely at his associates when he passed their table. Of course, they gave him confused expressions in return but that didn't matter. After exiting the saloon Ezra took a deep breath of fresh air telling himself that he did it because he wanted to and not because he wanted to calm the nerves in his stomach. He'd never robbed a bank before and he was never going to do it again. He just wanted to teach his sainted mother a lesson.

He stepped off the boardwalk and lost his balance but he managed to regain it before he hit the ground. Ezra tipped his hat to a woman who was giving him a disgusted look.

'He's supposed to be a lawman and look at him. It's not even lunch time and he's already drunk.' She didn't think the gambler would hear her but he did and she was lucky that he had only one thought on his mind. If he didn't she would be turning red with embarrassment by now.

The future bank robber kept his concentration on his walking, if he became distracted he would fall and not get up. Sleeping was for later; right now, he had to make his mother proud of him. The bank was only a few minutes away but it took Ezra at least ten minutes to walk the short distance.

Entering the bank was a lot easier said than done. Two witches that are more sanctimonious were leaving the bank and the gentleman that he was, he had to hold the door open for them. When he was about to enter another female of the specious rushed through the open doorway without as much as a thank you. And he was going through all this to please a woman. God help him!

Finally, he was able to enter the bank and stand behind a woman who wore a large bonnet over her greying hair. Did he know this woman? Ezra leaned sideways then forward (remarkable really, considering how drunk he is) and stared into her face. No, he didn't know her but she knew him.

'Mr. Standish! What are you doing?'

'Me, I've come to take my mother's money out of her account.' He raised his right forefinger to his lips and hushed the woman to silence. 'I'm going to teach her a lesson, make her proud of me. Don't tell her.'

The woman, Mrs. Potter, smiled at the younger man. He must be really drunk not to recognise me. 'I won't tell a soul.'

'Thank you . . .'


'It's Mrs. Potter dear.' She took his arm when he started to fall away from her. 'Are you sure you're in the right state of mind to do this?'

'What do you mean?'

'You're drunk Mr. Standish.'

'I am not drunk dear lady and I resent that accusation. I am only slightly . . . drunk.'

'Just make sure you don't hurt anyone.' Mrs. Potter helped him back into line behind her.

'The only person I intend hurting is myself.' Ezra muttered then swore when someone bumped into him. He turned to find it was the lady who had forced her way through the door in front of him. Again, she didn't apologise so Ezra gave her one of his most threatening expressions. He thought he had put the fear of hell into her when she stepped back. If only he knew that, she stepped away from away from a crooked smile.

The woman growled at him when the line moved one person closer to the bank teller. Ezra winced and did as he was told. He continued to stare at her but she wouldn't go away. Ezra gave up and turned around to find himself facing the teller. It took him a couple of seconds to remember his name.

'What can I do for you Mr. Standish?'

'Mr. Johnson, my mother has sent me to withdraw her funds from your bank.'

'She has?'

'Yes she has.'

'Why?'

'Why not?' Ezra retorted. Why was it so hard to take some money out of a person's account?

'I don't think I can give you your mother's money Mr. Standish.'

'You do know who I am don't you?'

'How could we not!' Huffed the woman behind him.

Ezra spun to face her, screwed up his handsome face so it wasn't so handsome anymore and returned to his business.

'You know that I am a lawman of this town and have been for nearly six months.'

'Yes.' Johnson began to fidget; he didn't like the way this was going.

'You know who my mother is.'

'Harlot that she is!'

Ezra raised his fist and turned to the woman who was torturing him. 'Shut up!'

'Are you going to hit me with that young man?' there was no fear in the woman's eyes.

Ezra was beaten before the fight even started. 'No madam but if you would please desist from calling my mother names.' He received no answer. Ezra let out a sigh and began to wish that he wasn't doing this. 'Mr. Johnson, my mother sent me here so if you would kindly do what she has requested so I can leave this woman in her own company.'

Johnson glanced over Ezra's shoulder and knew that she would get madder with each passing second and he didn't want to deal with her anger, not today. He also knew that Standish wouldn't take no for an answer.

'Are you drunk?' asked Mrs. Hickings, the woman who was standing behind Ezra.

'Of course not.' Ezra stood straight then grabbed the counter to keep himself upright. 'If we can get back to business please.' He slammed his palm on the counter.

'Then you should turn yourself around.'

Ezra let out a guttural growl. 'My mother's money thank you Mr. Johnson.'

'All of it?'

'Yes all of it.' Ezra was smiling now. 'How much is there?'

'Didn't she tell you?'

The smile froze on Ezra's face then it dropped like a heavy stone. He turned slowly then thought of something to say. 'Of course she did. I'm only making sure that you know how much to give me.' He smiled again; he didn't need his mother to be proud of him when he was quite capable of being proud of himself.

'Mrs. Standish deposited five thousand dollars last week.'

Luckily for Ezra Standish, that Mr. Johnson turned away from him because he would have seen Ezra's arm fall from the counter and not to mention the shocked expression he wore. Five thousand dollars Ezra mouthed silently.

'Could you sign this please Mr. Standish while I get your mother's money.'

Ezra didn't like the way he kept saying 'your mother's money', it made his feeling of guilt worsen. The con man signed the piece of paper then pushed it away.

Johnson returned quickly with the money and handed it over. He was about to comment on the fact that Ezra had signed his mother's name when a cold voice stopped him.

'I want everyone's hands where I can see them!'

'You must be joking, surely.' Ezra couldn't believe his luck. He had succeeded and now this man and his two cohorts were going to take the five thousand dollars away from him. His mother won't believe that he had first removed the money before it had been stolen.

'Do I look like I'm joking?' Chad Morgan, a bank robber since the age of thirty-three aimed his gun at Ezra. 'Hand over that money you've got in your hand.'

'Do I have to?' Ezra groaned as though he was a child that had to give back the candy he'd just found.

'Yes you have to! I'm the bank robber and you're the gambler so you have to do as I tell you.'

'Mr. Standish here is part of the law in this town.' Mrs. Hickings decided to inform the bank robber of some useless information. If Ezra weren't drunk then maybe it would have been important information to the bank robber.

'If you died today we would all be happy!' Ezra told her.

After her mouth dropped, open Mrs. Hickings slapped him across the left cheek.

'If you two love birds don't mind we would like to rob this bank and leave.'
'You won't get away with this.' Hickings insisted.

'And why is that?'

'I told you, Mr. Standish, gentleman that he is,' she snarled at him, 'is one of the seven lawmen in this
town and he won't allow you to leave this bank alive.'

'Good lord.' Ezra felt like handing over his job and his gun to this lady so they would kill her instead of him. 'Don't worry about me gentlemen. I am drunk therefore incapable of stopping you.'

'Really.' Morgan smiled. 'Hank, get his gun!'

'You don't want me to just shoot him?' Hank asked.

'Don't you think that a gunshot would bring the rest of the law down on us?'

'I could use my knife.'

'Will you get his gun before I kill you?'

'Okay,' said Hank.

Ezra leaned against the counter to support his trembling legs while Hank took his one and only gun. He hadn't been bothered to wear his second gun or derringer. His day wasn't going the way he had hoped it would. All he needed now was for an angry Chris Larabee to announce himself outside the bank.

'You,' Morgan yelled at the teller, 'open the safe.'

Ezra rolled his eyes. They always expected the bank teller to open the safe. If they had been bothered to look first they would have seen that the safe was already open. Where else would the teller have gotten his five thousand dollars?

'It's already open.' Johnson told him.

'Hank.'

Hank moved quickly to the other side of the counter and forced Johnson towards the safe then handed him a bag to put the money in. While he was doing that Morgan stepped closer to Ezra.

'I'll take that.' He reached out with his hand to take the money.

'I'd rather not.' Ezra held the money closer to his chest.

Morgan raised his arm and brought the butt of his gun down against the side of Ezra's face. With already unsteady legs, Ezra fell easily to the floor. Morgan bent over and tore the money from Ezra's hands.

'This is a lot of money.'

'It belongs to his mother.' Mrs. Hickings explained.

Ezra could easily kick out with his foot and hit this woman who seemed to be giving away a lot of free information about other people. He could have easily done it if he wasn't drunk that was.

'You got any money on you lady?'

'No I don't!'

'Then you were going to withdraw money.'

'No I wasn't!'

'Then what the hell are you doing here?'

'I brought Benny his lunch.'

Ezra glanced up and saw the tray the woman was carrying. Why hadn't he seen that before? She was standing right behind him.

'Benny?' Ezra and Morgan said together.

'Benny Johnson, my son.'

'Got all the money Chad.' Hank came into view with a large smile on his face. 'Must be at least fifty thousand here.'

'Fifteen thousand,' Johnson corrected, 'Mr. Standish has five thousand so that makes twenty thousand.'

'Had.' Ezra muttered from his position on the floor. He didn't want to get up. The best thing for him to do now was to roll over, fall asleep, and hope that this day ends quickly. He had made a big mistake when he decided to get out of bed and take on the day.

'Okay, now that that's done we can leave.'

'Aren't you going to do anything to stop them Mr. Standish?'

'What would you like me to do? Over power them, take their guns then march them to the jail.'
She raised a hairy eyebrow at him. 'Isn't that what you usually do?'

'Only when I have my guns and my associates to back me up. You see there is only one of me and three of them and I am unarmed.'

'Coward!'

'You in the bank! Come out where we can see you and shoot you!'

'There are your associates now Mr. Standish.'

'I don't suppose you want to take her as a hostage?' Ezra prayed silently for the answer of yes but even god was ignoring him today.

'Somehow I think they would shoot her just to get rid of her.'

'I know I would.' Ezra sighed.

'Come on then gambler, I'm sure you know the routine.'

'Do you know of a Chris Larabee?' Ezra asked as he pushed himself to his feet.

'No, should I?'

'No I suppose not.' Ezra waited for a comment about Chris from Hickings but he didn't hear one.

'I'm going to count to ten and you better be out here when I'm finished!' Chris's voice could be heard clearly inside the bank.

'He can't count.' Ezra commented.

'One! Two! Three! Six!'

'Told you.'

'I've got your man Standish in here!' Morgan yelled back. 'If you keep counting I'll shoot him!'

'Nine!'

Ezra raised his eyebrows in surprise. Surely, Chris didn't want this man to shoot him.

'Did you hear what I said?' Morgan fired his gun into the floor as a warning.

'Now they'll think I'm dead and rush this place.'

Morgan looked at Ezra then quickly yelled. 'That was a warning. I'll shoot him next time!'

'Nice save,' said Ezra.

'Seven did you say?' Morgan spoke to the woman after ignoring the gambler's comment.

'Yes there is and he is one of them,' she nodded, ' don't ask me why though. Look at him, he's useless.'

'What do you expect lady! There's three of us, one of him and we have guns.' Morgan was beginning to feel sorry for Ezra.

'That's what I told her.' Ezra was glaring in his best possible way at Hickings. It would have been a look that could kill if he wasn't drunk.

'Where would they be?' Morgan asked Hickings.

'How would I know?' Hickings retorted. 'Ask him, he works with them.'

Morgan's shoulders sagged in defeat. 'If she were out there instead of this Chris Larabee I would have given up by now.'

Ezra smiled. 'I would have shot her by now if I were you.'

'Standish isn't it?'

'Yes.'

'Where would they be?'

Ezra straightened his shoulders and stumbled to his left before he regained his balance. 'I'm afraid I can't tell you that Mr. Bank Robber and threatening to shoot her won't get the information you want and neither will threatening to shoot the teller because he's her son.'

'Looks like we robbed the wrong bank.' The third member of the gang spoke to his cohorts.

'We still have Standish.' Morgan reminded him. 'We just need to know where they are out there.'

'We'll shoot our way out.'

'You'll die if you do that.' Ezra told him.

'Then you'll die with us.'

Ezra didn't like this third guy. 'Why didn't he stay outside with the horses?'

'He's the boss.' Morgan smiled at Ezra's unease.

'Oh.'

'Then why are you doing all the talking?' Mrs. Hickings asked Morgan.

'He's not talking as much as you are,' said Ezra.

'Or you!' The third man known as Baker to Morgan and Hank took a step closer to Ezra.

'I tend to talk too much when I'm inebriated.'

'What?'

'Drunk.'

'Get your ass over here Standish!' Baker ordered him. 'Hank, give me the money. If we get split up we meet at Purgatory.'

Morgan nodded and Hank handed the money over to his boss. When Ezra got close, enough Baker grabbed his arm and pulled him in front of him then wrapped his arm around the gambler's throat.

'This won't work,' said Ezra.

'If it doesn't you'll die with me.'

'You said that already.'

Baker walked to the door pushing Ezra in front of him. The other two bank robbers had each taken a hostage. Morgan had taken the woman leaving the son for Hank. Baker was finding it hard to see past Ezra's hat so he used the barrel of his gun to push it off Ezra's head.

Ezra saw the opening and decided to take a chance. Here was the plan. He would take Baker out of the picture then run out into the middle of the street. No. Not the middle of the main street, he could be shot out there. He would have to run around to the side of the building where it would be safe. No. He would have to stay in the bank, grab Baker's gun and put an end to this hostage situation. The scenario had only taken a split second to go through his mind.

His elbow hit Baker in the stomach and when the arm around his neck loosened, he attempted to turn around. Before he knew it someone's gun hit the back of his head and instead of Baker falling to the floor, Ezra fell to the floor.

*******


Mrs. Hickings used her handkerchief to dab at the bleeding wound on the back of the gambler/lawman's head. She pressed harder than she needed to and it resulted in an ugly curse erupting from Ezra.

'Mind how you speak when in my presence Mr. Standish.'

'Are you the one causing me all this pain?' Ezra opened his eyes and saw that he was still in the bank.

'No Mr. Standish, you did when you decided to play hero.'

'I played hero?' It came as a surprise to Ezra; he wouldn't usually do such a stupid thing when he was under the influence of alcohol. It slowed his responses.

'Don't you remember?' Hickings frowned down at the man.

'Of course I remember Mrs. . . Mrs. . . ?'

'Mrs. Hickings!'

'Of course I remember Mrs. Hickings. Everything from your insane remarks about my character to their inability to kill you.'

Ezra received a second slap to the face and it did nothing to help the pain in his head.

'This lady doesn't like you much does she?' Morgan smiled as he moved towards Ezra.

Ezra groaned and said. 'I had hoped this would be over when I woke up.'

'You ain't that lucky pretty boy.' Baker grabbed Ezra's arm again and pulled him to unsteady feet.

'Now let's try this again.'

'Would you allow me a few minutes to regain my composure?'

'You just woke up from a two hour sleep; you don't need to regain your composure.'

'I was unconscious not asleep.' Ezra growled then his eyes widened when he remembered something else. 'Two hours. What on earth has Mr. Larabee been doing for two hours?'

'A lot of yelling, not much else.' Baker shrugged.

'Good lord! You should all be dead by now, all three of you. Chris would never wait this long. He doesn't have a lot of patience.' His face paled. 'You haven't killed them have you?'

'Don't have a lot of faith in your friends do you.' Hickings was smiling.

Ezra was really beginning to hate this woman. 'I have a lot of faith in my friends Mrs. Dickings.'

'It's Mrs. Hickings.'

'Uh huh. Did you have a happy childhood Mr. Johnson?' Ezra asked her son. Mrs. Hickings had obviously been married on more than one occasion.

'A happier one than you no doubt.' She retorted. The more often Maude Standish visited Four Corners the more the townsfolk found out about her son's background. Maude talked a lot about Ezra and his childhood.

OW! That one hurt. Now not only did his head hurt but also he was reminded of how much his heart had been hurting which was the reason he started drinking. 'Can we go out now and get shot. Maybe we could give Mrs. Fickings a loaded weapon and let her go first.'

'They're your friends Standish, so you can go first. And if you try anything this time it'll be a bullet that hits your head and not a gun.' Baker pushed Ezra forward a second time and repeated the movement of putting his arm around his hostage's throat then kicked the door open. They stepped out onto the boardwalk to find the street in front of them empty.

'Where are they?'

'I don't know.' Ezra used his hands to grip the forearm that was squeezing his throat a little too tightly.

'You should know, you work with them.'

'As far as I'm concerned they are not doing what I expected them to be doing.' Ezra was searching the street but there was nothing that would give him an indication of where his associates were. What had they been doing for the last two hours? Sleeping? Had they left and abandoned him like they had when he opened his business?

'Ezra darling'. What are you doing with those men?' Maude Standish appeared out of nowhere. Well practically out of nowhere. She had been standing just inside the Potter's store waiting patiently for her son to appear.

'Aw hell!' Ezra lost all hope of being rescued from this situation. His mother had probably run the others out of town. 'What are you doing here mother? Trying to get me killed perhaps.'

What Ezra didn't know was that while his mother was distracting the bank robbers his fellow lawmen were moving in on them.

Maude was now smiling. 'What were you doing in the bank Ezra? You know you don't have any money in there.'

Ezra wished that Mrs. Hickings would slap the smile off his mother's face.

'Put your guns down.' A familiar voice spoke from behind them.

'That'll be Chris Larabee.' Ezra informed Baker.

Morgan and Hank turned around to face Chris who had Buck and Josiah standing on either side of him. Baker though, stood tall and pushed the barrel of his gun harder against Ezra's temple.

'No mother should watch her son die.'

'She won't have to.'

Ezra couldn't see him but he didn't have to see Chris Larabee's face to know what was written all over it. Confident anger. Chris was always angry but it was a controlled anger that he used to his advantage. It was the reason Larabee was still alive.

'Mr. Larabee, I badly need a drink so would you please hurry up and do your job.'

'Shut up Ezra.'

'As you wish Chris, as you wish.'

Morgan and Hank could see Chris's face and what they saw scared them. It wasn't going to take much to convince them to give up their guns.

'What makes you think it won't happen?' Baker asked the man behind him.

'What won't happen?' Ezra was finding it hard to follow the line of conversation.

'I've got a man on the roof who can take you out before you pull the trigger.'

'And if my trigger finger fires the gun? What then Larabee? I'll tell you what. Your man here dies right in front of his mother and friends.'

'That won't happen either.' Larabee's voice told Baker.

'I know you said he couldn't count,' Baker whispered in Ezra's ear, 'but you didn't tell me he was stupid as well.'

'Not stupid, just stubborn.'

'What's it going to be?'


'Give us a minute will ya Larabee!' Baker yelled and Ezra winced at the voice bellowing in his ear.

'What's he going to do Standish?'

'Kill you.' The answer was blunt.

'Is that before or after I kill you?'

'Probably before and certainly afterwards, you'll die either way unless you let me and the others go.'

'And if I let you go?'

'If you drop your guns first then you'll live, you'll go to jail but you'll live.' Ezra knew Baker was thinking it over. 'What do you prefer to do? Live or die?'

'Larabee won't risk your lives would he?' He smiled when Ezra didn't answer him. 'I'm gonna walk out of here and I'm taking you with me.'

'I'm too drunk to get on a horse.'

'Who said you were getting on a horse?'

'You said you were taking me with you so I assumed you would be putting me on a horse and forcing me to ride out of town.'

'You didn't stop to think that I might shoot you?'

'No I didn't stop to think that but at the moment I would be grateful if you did shoot me.'

'Standish and me are getting out of here. If you try and stop me I'll shoot him, not kill him yet, just shoot him.'

'It won't happen.'

'What is it with that guy saying that all the time?'

'You're not listening what Chris is saying.' Ezra told Baker.

'I know what he's saying.' Baker growled and pushed Ezra's head up further causing the gambler to stand on his toes.

'You hear what he's saying but you're not listening to what he's saying.' Ezra noticed that it was becoming harder to take a breath.

'Then tell me!'

'Unless you let us go you are going to die and he's not beyond killing you before you try and kill me.'

'So my choice is live or die.' Baker gave Ezra a few seconds to answer but the gambler stayed silent.

'I had the same choice two hours ago and I'm still alive.'

'You won't be for much longer,' said Ezra, 'Mr. Larabee doesn't have the patience.'

'Put the guns down then let the hostages go slowly.'

Baker was about to laugh but realised that Larabee wasn't talking to him. He turned to find his partners in crime giving up. 'What the hell are you guys doing?'


'Look at his face Baker!' Morgan spat out as he placed his gun on the ground. 'He wouldn't hesitate in killing us.'

'You've got hostages! He won't kill you!'

'Had.' Ezra smiled, the other two hostages were now safe. Josiah was taking them away while Buck was dealing with the bank robbers. 'It's just you and me now.' Ezra no longer cared. He didn't have to worry about the others getting hurt and he refused to stay in this position any longer. 'Shoot him Chris!'

'Shut the hell up.' Baker pushed his gun against Ezra's skull even harder forcing Ezra's head to reveal the bank robber's face.

'Shoot him Chris! Damn it, shoot him!'

Before he could blink, Ezra found himself on the ground with Baker lying on top of him. Finally. It was another few seconds before someone pulled the dead man off him. Ezra stared up into Chris's smiling features. 'What took you so long? Two hours I was in there. Two hours and you did nothing!'

'I was busy arguing with your mother. She thought she knew what was the best thing to do.'

'I don't want to know.' Ezra moaned and rolled over to hide his embarrassment.

'Come on Ezra, I thought you wanted a drink.'

Ezra refused to move. 'No, just leave me here.'

'Ezra Standish! Get up out of that dirt now and give your mother a hug.'

Why couldn't Baker have shot him? It would have been preferable to dealing with his mother. 'Yes mother.' Ezra stood up and tried to brush the dirt from his clothing. He smiled to himself when he got an idea. 'Chris I seem to have a head injury, perhaps you could escort me to the clinic so Nathan can take care of me.'

'Nasty injury Ezra,' Chris had looked at the back of Ezra's head, 'you might have to stay in the clinic for a few days.'

Ezra was relieved when Chris played along with him.

'Mr. Standish!'

Ezra knew that it was Johnson's voice and he prayed that the man's mother wasn't with him.

'Mr. Standish, I have your money.' Johnson came running up to Ezra.

'What money is that Ezra?' Maude Standish was now standing next to her son with her arm resting on his shoulder.

'It isn't money mother it's . . . it's . . .'

'It's yours Mrs. Standish. Mr. Standish withdrew it for you.'

'He what?'

'You asked him to withdraw five thousand dollars for you.'

'Ezra, could I speak to you for a moment.' Maude didn't wait for an answer. Instead, she pulled her child away from Larabee and the bank teller. 'What are you doing taking my money from the bank?'

Ezra lowered his head. He needed some time to think.

'Well.'

'I wanted you to know that I could do it.'

'Do what Ezra. To show me that you could be a thief! We are not thieves Ezra, we are business people!'

'I'm drunk mother, I thought that-'

'You don't think Ezra, that's your problem.'

'I had all intentions of putting it back mother. You weren't going to even know that I had done it. I needed to prove to myself that I could ruin you.'

'That's not how you do it Ezra. Haven't you listened to anything I've told you when you were growing up?'

'I listened to everything mother. That's why I'm a failure at being a person and a friend.'

'You are not a failure Ezra Standish. Not while you are my son.' Maude stood on her toes and kissed her son on the cheek then walked away after snatching her money from Johnson.

Ezra watched his mother walk away. The woman always had a way of confusing him. One moment she was accusing him of being a thief and the next she was comforting him in her own way. He loved his mother and knew she loved him; she just had an odd way of showing it.


~~The End~~





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