The Short Con: Chap. 13 "A Love Never Meant to Be"

James Ford slipped his clothes back on. Pebbles remained in bed, still under the sheets.

“What’s your hurry, cowboy?” she teased.

Ford frowned.

“The kids’ll be back at any time,” he answered.

“Oh, I’m sure they won’t be in any hurry to come back and hang out with us old folks,” Pebbles replied.

“Yeah, but still,” Ford said, as he pulled on his boots.

“Why, James Ford!” Pebbles said, herself now getting up and reaching for her dress, which was carelessly tossed over a bedside chair, “what happened to your old spirit of adventure? Your desire to live life on the edge?”

“Not when it concerns my daughter!” Ford sternly answered.

“Speaking of your daughter,” Pebbles smiled, “how IS your own “project” with her coming along?”

Ford reached into his back pocket and pulled out Clementine’s forged permission slip.

“This should get everything started!” Ford answered, “could Bam help me out on this?”

Pebbles took the slip and looked it over.

“It’ll be no problem! I’ll have Bam take care of it, for ten percent!” Pebbles replied, “but are you sure you want to go ahead with it? I mean, she’s never had a father around and she really seems happy to be able to just hang out with you!”

“Yeah, I do!!” Ford irritatingly replied, “I want to go ahead with it!”

“Okay, okay!” Pebbles said, as she got dressed, “how about we go on over to the park? See how she’s doing? We can start showing her the full operation!”

“Good idea,” Ford said, as he put his car keys in his pocket. He watched Pebbles quickly brush her hair.

He remembered a time, long ago, when he and her had first met and how they had worked that long con in Rhode Island. Ford noted she looked as beautiful today as she had back then.

He had never told her this, but he had once fallen for her. He knew she was married. Hell, he had worked with both her and her husband on that Rhode Island con! He even considered trying to convince her to run off with him. But at the last minute, he backed off!

It wasn’t that he suddenly decided, way back then, he didn’t love her. But he had realized that what had attracted him so much to her, was the same thing that would of eventually drove them apart. It was the fact that they were both so damned much alike!

“Ready, James?” Pebbles asked.

“Ready!” James sighed, as he held open the door and they both exited to head over to the park to check up on Clementine and Bam.

Next: Chap. 14 “Bumping into Clementine”

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