By: Travis Naughton

Late in the afternoon on the fifth day of their ride, Blackjack and Jane pulled into Hot Springs. After finding accommodations for their horses and registering for a hotel room as Mr. & Mrs. Black, the tired travelers looked forward to taking a refreshing soak in one of the town’s famous bath houses.

“Is it true these waters have healing properties, Mr. Black?” Jane asked.
“That’s what they say, Mrs. Black,” Blackjack answered with a smile and a wink. “As long as the water’s hot enough to loosen up these knots in my back, then that’ll be good enough for me. I’ll be in that building on the corner there. This one is for ladies only,” he said, gesturing toward the wooden façade of the nearest bath house.

“Shall we meet somewhere later for supper?” Jane asked. “I’m starved.”
“The hotel has a restaurant,” Blackjack said. “I could go for a good steak.”
“I believe I could eat a whole cow,” Jane said. “I’ll see you there at, say, six o’ clock?”
“It’s a date,” Blackjack said before quickly backtracking. “I mean to say, yes, six would be just fine.”

Read full chapter in this week’s Journal…