For those of you just now reading this, what follows is the almost true accounts of my adventures in and around New Austin.  I came out to these parts on the repeated invitation of an old friend of mine, who shows up on wanted posters as “C. A. Jones.”

New Austin is a patch of wide open country down by the Rio Bravo, and it is full of all sorts of miscreants, lawmen, and other wild animals.  It’s a good place to ride in the saddle, practice riflery, dueling, knife fighting, and occasionally find a hand or two of poker to play with men who smell more of whiskey than money.

It is not a place for indecision or grand plans, as it is also a dying place.  “The last frontier” they call it in Blackwater, the city that used to be the end of a rail line, and is now just its latest junction.   “The dying west,” they call it out here.  ‘Course the spirit of the west ain’t the only thing that’s dying out this way.  There’s thievin’ and murderin’ gangs trying to keep the place plenty uncivilized, battalions of U. S. Marshals killing them slowly into submission, and a group of Mexicans somebody branded “Rebeldes” who’d like to turn New Austin back into “Mexico del Norte.”  Dying West? Naw, dyin’s something everybody’s doing out here.

They call me the “Kill ‘Em All Kid” from a couple of disagreements I ended with a measured application of “excessive force.”  I came to New Austin by invitation.  I stay because the east won’t take me back.  It’s a bitter nasty evil land with a hash manner and damn little forgiveness, and it suits me just fine.