Lee slept fitfully all night, dreaming about gallows and puppet trials. But they eventually gave way to a fateful stand in the canyons against a posse of men, with Una dying by his side as he tried to hold out against a force that outnumbered them many times over. Why he was holding out, he had forgotten. That wasn’t enough to stop the fear flowing through his body at the thought of losing her.
He awoke hot and sweating to the sun rising in the distance. Una still slept beside him, curled in against his body in that way of hers that always caught his heart. Oh how he longed to marry her! But not until he had the money to give her all that she wanted and desired. Even if she didn’t know that she wanted it yet. She would someday. What they had was unconventional, but that didn’t make it any less special. Lee loved Una more than anything and she felt the same way about him, but neither of them had ever put it so blatantly into words. There was no need to. Both of them knew that the other knew, and that was enough for them.
Lee knew that sleep wasn’t liable to come to him again, so instead he climbed out of his bed roll and stretched the cold stiffness out of his muscles. Jogging on the spot to warm up, he thought of what Eli had said the night before and shook his head. Maybe he could talk him around to the idea. He hoped so. If he had that money then there was nothing standing in his way of marrying the woman that he loved. And that was all that he really wanted in the world.
They’d set up camp the night before by the bank of a river. Several gnarled tress grew around, and there was plenty of dead wood. Lee gathered enough to fuel the fire for a while. When he returned - feeling far more alert now than he had - Eli was awake and brewing coffee.
“I accept, Lee,” Eli said quietly, watching the sun rising in the distance. “We’ll do it.”
Lee smiled at him. “I knew you’d come to your senses sooner or later.”
Two days later, Lee and Eli rode into Santa Gertrudis. Una was waiting for them outside town in an old, abandoned cabin. Lee had refused to put her in danger by letting her go in with them, depite her protests that she didn‘t like always being left behind. It was ten in the morning.
They rode up to the bank and dismounted their horses. Eli carried an empty saddlebag over his shoulder, and they pulled their bandannas up to hide their faces.
“Put your hands up!” Lee said, bursting through the door and pointing his gun at the bank attendant behind the counter, the only person present. It seemed curious to him that there wasn’t so anymore security for such a large amount of money, but he didn’t stop to question it. “And fill this saddlebag with the money in the safe. All of it. Don’t leave any behind.”
Eli handed the saddlebag over, pointing his own gun at the man too. The attendant - a young man himself - looked as if he were about to protest. But when Lee cocked his gun he swallowed and meekly did what he had been told to.
But in turning to give them the saddlebag of money, he pulled his own gun from under the counter. Eli saw it coming and shot him in the shoulder, making him drop the gun.
“The next one goes in your head,” he drawled calmly, “now hand it over.” He took the bag and followed Lee out the door.
People were already spilling out of doors, brought by the gunshot. The two outlaws jumped onto their horses backs and shook them into a gallop, but not before a bullet whistled past Lee’s ear, a little too close for him to feel comfortable. They didn’t stop to return fire, instead did their very best to high tail it out of there before it was too late.
When they thought that they were well away, Lee took a bullet. It felt like an explosion in his left leg. The horse slowed while he tried to re-position himself in such a way that would take some of the pressure off the wound. There was a great deal of pain waiting to spring on him but it hadn’t found the courage to rear its ugly head yet and that thought gave him the strength to keep on going. All same though, it burned white-hot where the bullet had pierced his skin.
|Adam Brody||as Lee|
|Gael Garcia Bernal||as Eli|
|Dianna Agron||as Una|