Ten of Hearts: 'Velvet Nightshade'

From 1d4chan

I once knew a real Gunslinger, way back when. Yeah, you doubt it, but just listen here. Didn't know she had a Card till we parted ways, but lookin back I shoulda guessed. Now before I tell you 'bout the card, I gotta tell you bout the woman. She was a subtle type, but not quiet or weak. Forceful, when she chose to be. A fancier man said somethin bout tigers and bushes, but I ain't that man. I'll tell ya it was hard to underestimate her, way she moved. Snake in grease, for sure. We traveled together, up north and back, a few times. Met her on the road as she was headed down to see her family. That's what mattered to her, her family. Her parents, her kids, all down south. She talked 'bout em all the time, real proud of them makin it on their own, in no man's land. No bandits, don't think that. Good, honest folk. Clever, too.

We met some trouble along the way, highway robbery types. At least a dozen brutes, and not smart ones, couldn't talk our way out of it. So I refuse to pay em, as we didn't have much to pay em with. That's when she turned and ran. I was real shocked, she didn't seem the cowardly type. I take cover and start shootin' at the bandits, they start shooting back, its a big 'ol mess. Then, out of no where, they start dropping like flies, bullets flyin from a nearby hill. I look over, and I see standin there, her pistol in hand. Not the card, but a genuine Smythe pistol, made by the man himself. She doesn't miss a single shot, and the bastards are all dead in under a minute. She comes back down and apologizes for running, sayin she's no good up close. I laugh and tell her it's all good.

And that's how it goes for a long while. Going back and forth from north and south, makin deliveries and checkin on her family. They took good care of me a few times. But of course, that's not what you wanna hear about, is it?

So, fifth or sixth time we went down to her folks place, a buncha bandits had settled in nearby. And of course, they were being all threatening to her family. Now, she didn't take well to that, but her folks wanted to handle it themselves. So she sits on her hands, just barely, while the jerk in charge is shoutin and playin himself up. This goes on for a week or so, and it doesn't come to violence, but it's not gettin any better. We're about to head up, and she tells me to wait at the edge of the farm. By this point, I trust her when she says mysterious shit like that, so I wait on by the gate. An hour later, she comes marching up, utterly furious. Turned out, the bandits had gotten fed up with waitin, and kidnapped one of her kids, her little girl.

Now, I'd seen her furious before, usually when someone actually got a shot off at her, but I'd never seen this. She coulda been a demon outa hell itself, the way she was shouting. She tells me to go get the wagon, and I do, an' she pulls it out of her crate. The Gun.

It's a rifle, shiny and black. Sleek, almost beautiful. Something about it put me off of lookin at it, but I just couldn't tear my eyes away. The red heart in vines, the Ten on the barrel... It was a sight, that's for sure.

She leads me on into the forest, a long ways away from the bandits, and tells me to keep watch. She climbs up into the trees, that Card strapped to her back, and sets up in an old hunting platform. As night begins to set in, I see the bandits come out, torches and guns in hand. Seems they were 'bout to start a raid. I look up to warn her, but she's already taking aim.

I almost didn't believe it when she took the shot, since the gun didn't make a sound. But... It shifted, somehow. If a gun could feel pleasure, that one did, as the bandits' watchman fell from his perch bleedin from the forehead. After that, she just kept shooting, killing them all one by one. Not a goddamn sound came from up there, not her breathing or even the trigger.

Less than twenty minutes later, she drops down and I scream at the sudden noise. Her face is all serious, but I could see a bit of relief in her eyes. She 'n I head out to get back her little girl, and I catch a good look at all the bodies. Every single one of them had been killed in one shot, right through the skull. Frightening sight, it was.

We parted ways after that. I just couldn't take it, knowin that Card was in our wagon.

Wild Cards
Spades: 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A
Hearts: 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A
Clubs: 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A
Diamonds: 2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A
Jokers: Red Joker - Black Joker
Introduction - The World - Gameplay - Stories of the world
On the Attainment, Ownership and Passing of The Cards
Variant Rule: Hands