Some people called her the Space Cowboy.
Whitey Collins had a deep interest in outer space and would stare up at the night sky when she made camp on cattle drives. "What is mankind but dust in the wind?" she often thought to herself. "All we are is dust in the wind."
These very thoughts roamed through her head as she lay in front of a campfire in the Woebegone Desert. The stars shone bright. It was a still, cold evening. Whitey lit up a cheroot and followed the smoke's lazy curl. It was quiet. Too damned quiet.
"There's something funny going on somewhere," she thought. "I can just feel it in the air."
Whitey was woken at dawn by a round of gunfire. She dove for cover and made out the distinctive shape of Ol' Nick the Smith. He was firing his gun into the air and screaming blue murder. He kicked over the campfire. He said to the herd, "Git! Go on, git!" They took panic and went on a stampede. Ol' Nick the Smith moved to get out of the way but he moved too slow. Whitey watched him fall beneath the hooves of the cattle.
Doc Reti approached Whitey, and said, "We best bury that poor man."
"There ain't much left of him to bury," replied Whitey.
Some people called him a gangster of love.
Some called him Maurice.
Either way, Jake "The Kid" Bezzant, a recent member of the Collins Gang, allegedly went on the rampage. Reports of his alleged lusts and alleged desires reached Whitey. She summoned him to the Last Chance Saloon. Without a word, she tore the deputy's badge off his belt, and turned her back on him. The Kid slithered out.
Doc Reti ordered a shot of rotgut for Whitey and himself. They stood at the bar, deep in thought. After a while, the Doc said, "One good thing. Everyone's too busy talking about The Kid to look deeper into that business with Ol' Nick."
Whitey drank her shot. Then she drank Doc Reti's shot. She said to him, "Nick who?"
Whitey declared to the townsfolk that she was now the Sheriff of Space.
"Dust in the wind," Whitey thought, smoking her cheroot by the campfire. "O how insignificant is mankind!"
A voice called out of the darkness, "Speak for yourself."
It was the famed author Franz Kakfa John Keats Fydor Dostoevsky Jeffrey Archer Simon Bridges.
Whitey paid him no mind. Once again she picked up the scent of something funny going on with the Gang. "Oh God," she wondered, "who's next?"