Ghost Riders in the Sky

Ghost Riders in the sky
The Outlaws

An old cowpoke went ridin' out one dark and windy day
Upon a ridge he rested as he went along his way
When all at once a mighty herd of red-eyed steers he saw
A plowin' through the ragged skies and up a cloudy draw

Yipie I ay Yipie I oh
Ghost herd in the sky

Their brands were still on fire and their hooves were made of steel
Their horns were black and shiny and their hot breath he could feel
A bolt of fear went through him as they thundered through the sky
He saw the riders coming hard and he heard their mournful cry

Yipie I ay Yipie I oh
Ghost riders in the sky

Their face is gaunt their eyes were blurred their shirts all soaked
With sweat
They're ridin' hard to catch that herd but they 'aint caught 'em yet
'Cause they've got to ride forever in the range up in the sky
On horses snorting fire as they ride hard hear them cry

Yipie I ay Yipie I oh
Ghost riders in the sky

The riders leaned on by him he heard one call his name
If you want to save your soul from hell a riding on our range
Then cow-boy change your ways today or with us you will ride
Tryin' to catch this devil herd a-cross these endless

Yipie I ay Yipie I oh
Ghost riders in the sky
Ghost riders in the sky
Ghost riders in the sky’
Brett Montgomery and Cole Tucker were sitting on the corral fence outside the livery watching the horses. Jack Hillyard had told them about an old cowpoke who had ridden through Diamond Springs about this time of year a few years back and a story he had told Jack about seeing riders in the sky chasing after a herd of cows and that the riders had told him he had better change his ways or would be riding with them forever. He had been pretty shaken and Jack had shrugged saying, “I’m not sure if he was tellin’ the truth or had too much to drink and dreamt it in a drunken state.
Cole looked at Brett. “You reckon it’s true?”
Brett shrugged. “Don’t know…could be I used to hear the men tell stories about some really eerie things when I was involved with the gang.”
Cole looked at Brett thoughtfully. “What would you think about us campin’ out and seein’ if what that old cowpoke said was true?”
Brett gave cole a look. “Do you really think Jalen or Dan would let us do such a thing? Especially after that time we were campin’ together and the whole train thing?”
Cole bit his lip. “I’d guess not…but maybe we could sneak out together and see, we can be back before dawn and they’d never have to know.”
Brett looked at Cole consideringly. “Maybe…remember I’m the deputy of the town and what I do could reflect on Jalen…I wouldn’t want to lose my job.”
Cole said, “I can’t see why you’d lose your job just for going out to check out a ghost story. Deputies are supposed to investigate things aren’t they?”
Brett looked thoughtful. “I suppose you’re right about that.”
“So you’re investigatin’ and Jalen told you shouldn’t go places outside town by yourself and so I’ll be with you so that shouldn’t be a problem.”
Brett thought about what Cole was saying and although a piece of him said it was wrong, another piece said he was a grown man and should be able to decide what needed investigation and what didn’t. “Okay.” He said. “When should we do it?”
Cole considered this for a few moments and then said, “Well they say All Hollows Eve is a time when the living and the dead can communicate with each other. It’s usually the last day of October, so in a couple of weeks.”
Brett looked at his friend incredulously. “You’re funnin’ me.”
Cole shook his head. “No, I read about it in a magazine once.”
Brett still looked at Cole skeptically. “You’re sure about this?”
Cole nodded. “Yep, I’m sure.”
Brett nodded. “All right…for investigatin’ purposes.”
Cole grinned. “Of course.”
On All Hallows Eve Brett met Cole after Jalen was sound asleep, meeting him around eleven o’clock at night. He thought to himself as he rode carefully along in the brightly lit landscape. There was a large yellow harvest moon and the light cast eerie shadows and he jumped as the wind blew and rattled the bare branches of some trees and they clattered loudly and the shadows moved. When he arrived at the agreed upon spot his nerves were quivering with fear and anticipation. As Cole, on his mount broke from the shadows he nearly fell off his horse as he jumped. “Damn…you nearly scared me to death comin’ out of the woods like that!” He hissed at Cole.
Cole grinned unrepentantly. “A bit jumpy hmm?”
Brett whispered defensively, “You’d be too if you were worried about your partner trailin’ you.”
Cole considered this and nodded. “True, let’s go.” He headed his horse toward the spot they had picked out earlier on one of their rides. It was a draw and they lay down on their stomachs watching the horizon as the clouds passed over the moon, tearing and reassembling.
Cole said, “I hope it doesn’t rain.”
Brett said quietly.
They kept vigil and as the hour grew later and later they dozed, then came awake sharply as they seemed to hear hoof beats heading their way.
All of a sudden they saw the herd and then the riders.
Brett’s blue eyes widened and Cole’s hazel ones did the same.
The hair rose on the back of their necks as they heard the moans of the riders and saw the fiery brands. Then as the riders rode by they called their names and told them to change their ways.
Both young men turned to run only to slam right into the chests of their partners.
Jalen pulled Brett into a tight hug as did Dan.
Brett looked up into Jalen’s green eyes. “Did you see them Jalen…did you hear them? They even called my name!” He cried shaking.
Cole, now in Dan’s arms was also shaking.
Jalen said quietly, “What you saw was only in your imagination and what you heard was Dan and me tryin’ to get your attention.”
Brett quivered. “You’re sure?” He asked in a shaky voice. “There really weren’t any ghosts?”
Dan looked at Jalen and shook his head.
Cole said to Dan, “We saw and heard them…we really did! Just like Mr. Hillyard said the old cowpoke told him.”
Dan and Jalen exchanged looks.
“Well, if that’s so, then perhaps you’d better heed them and change your ways and stop sneakin’ out at night and to places you have no business goin’ to in the middle of the night.”
Dan tightened his hold on Cole. “Jalen’s right…I think it’s time we got the two of you home and discussed this little adventure a bit further.”
Cole and Brett exchanged looks, and then went with their respective partners.
The next day Brett and Cole were standing in front of the Sheriff’s office. “I expect Dan had a discussion with you last night?”  Brett asked.
Cole nodded. “Yeah… and you?”
Brett grimaced. “Yes, Jalen made his point of view on the subject very well-known and memorable.”
Cole winced. “Dan was just as explicit.”
Brett said, “I should know better than to allow you to talk me into these things.”
Cole grimaced once more. “I know…but we really did see the ghost riders didn’t we?”
Brett grinned at Cole. “No matter what Jalen and Dan said, I believe we did and believe the old cowpoke. But, we had better change our ways if we want to sit comfortably anytime soon.”
Cole nodded and then two young men grinned at each other knowing they’d get into some kind of mischief together in the future.
The end

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