Title:  Threads

By: tayryn

Rating:  FRAO

Disclaimer: not mine. Sadly.

Summary:  What happens when a thread is pulled?






“I’m losing him.”




“I’m losing him!  It’s as if he’s giving up… no longer fighting.”


“Oh God!”


“Talk to him!  Get up there and talk to him.”


“Matt… Matt, it’s Kitty… you have to fight, Cowboy… please…”


“That’s it, keep talking.”


“I’m sorry, Matt… I didn’t mean it… I was angry.  I love you so much!  Please, Matt… don’t leave me… I need you so much,” Kitty leaned in, pressed her lips against his ear and whispered desperately.


“What?  Kitty… what did you say?  I couldn’t hear you.  I…” Matt stepped towards her then stopped.  “Kitty?  What…”


Before him, on Doc’s table, Matt saw himself.  His shirt was gone, his chest covered in blood and Doc working over him.


“What the hell is going on?”


“You’ve come to a crossroads, Matthew.”




Matt’s head snapped up.


He slowly turned towards the door to Doc’s back room.  His eyes widened as a woman stepped through the door.




The endearment tumbled out of his mouth before he could stop it.


She wore a simple white robe, and her hair hung in dark auburn waves about her shoulders.  Laura Dillon pinned her son with familiar blue eyes as she moved deeper into the office.  “Hello, Matthew.”


The big man shook his head.  “No… this isn’t possible.  You’re…”


“Dead?”  The woman finished for him then nodded.  “Yes, I am.”


“Then I’m…”


“No.  I told you, you have come to a crossroads.”


“Crossroads?”  Matt shook his head in confusion.  “I don’t understand.”


“You are being given a rare gift, my son.”


“A gift?


“A gift,” Laura affirmed as she slowly walked around the table where Doc was still working on the bleeding wound in Matt’s chest.  When she neared Kitty, Laura stopped and gazed down at her.  “Do you remember your thoughts when you left the Long Branch earlier today?”


Matt frowned.  “Yes,” he said in a low voice. 


The dark-haired woman turned her head to meet her son’s eyes.  She raised an eyebrow in question. 


“Kitty and I had a fight.”




“What our fights are usually about…” Matt tapped the badge on his chest.


“Tell me,” his mother said.


“For the past month, we’ve been planning a vacation.  A week in New Orleans for Kitty to show me the sights, show me where she grew up; and then a week at our cabin… alone.  We planned to leave in two weeks.”  A soft smile touched Matt’s lips as he dropped his gaze to his redhead, stepping closer to where she sat next to his prone form.  “She’s been so excited…” his voice trailed off and he sighed deeply.  He reached out to touch her hair, hesitated, and then let his arm fall to his side.


“Something changed that.”


Matt nodded.  “I received a telegram earlier this morning about a trial.  I’d gone to see Kitty… and before I could get a word out, she’d spotted the telegram in my hand…”



“Oh no, Matt!”  Kitty shook her head.  “Not again… please tell me that’s not…”




“NO!  Not after what happened last time… I… we can’t go through that again, Matt.”


“Kitty, let me explain.”


“Explain what?  What’s to explain?  That’s a telegram in your hand,” she said waving absently at him then gave a bitter laugh.  “I can’t say that I’m surprised.  I’ve been expecting it.”


Matt’s eyes narrowed.  “What do you mean by that?”


“Oh, come off it, Matt,” Kitty began in a voice tinged with exasperation.  “For the last year, longer even, any time we’d planned to do something together… an overnight trip to the cabin, a picnic… even just dinner… you’d walk in with one of those damned telegrams and off you’d go.”


“It’s not been that bad, Kitty.”


“Yes, Matt, it has.  I can count on one hand the number of times our plans have actually worked out.”


“It’s my job, Kitty.”


“Yes, I know.”


Matt frowned at the mournful tone of her voice.  He opened his mouth to speak but Kitty cut him off.


“No, Matt.  Don’t say anything.  Nothing you say will make one lick of difference,” she gestured to the telegram with her chin.  “So, what is it this time?  A trial?  An outlaw?”


“A trial… but…”






“This Friday?”


He nodded and looked down at the yellow paper in his hand.


“I give up.  I just can’t do this anymore.”


Matt’s head snapped up at the quietly spoken words.  His eyes met hers, and a chill ran through his body at the look in her blue depths.


“Kitty…” he began.


Kitty shook her head.  “I give up,” she repeated.  “She wins.”


His brow furrowed in confusion.  “She?  What… who are you talking about?”


“Your other lover, Matt.”


“What other… Kitty, there’s been no one else.”


“That damned badge on your chest!” Kitty told him.  “She wins.  I’ve fought her for twenty years… I just can’t do it anymore.”


“Now, honey…”


“Don’t, Matt!  Just don’t!  I’ve had enough.  I just don’t have the strength.  I’m tired of fighting a battle I will never win.” She turned away from him and her next words were uttered on a whisper so soft that he almost missed them.  “My heart just isn’t in it anymore.”


Matt’s heart slammed against his ribs at her words.  She couldn’t mean… not after all these years… not after everything they’d been through… not… Matt shook his head.  He felt like he’d been punched in the gut.  “Kitty…”


“No!  Get out,” she said in a deceptively calm voice.  “Just get out, Matt!”


“No… we need to talk about this, Kitty.”


“There’s nothing more to talk about, Marshal.  Please leave.”


Matt looked down at the telegram in his hand.  He sighed and let it flutter to the table beside him.  Without another word he turned and left her rooms.



“You didn’t tell her about the rest of the telegram?  About taking her with you?”


Matt shook his head.  “I… I’ve never heard her sound that way before.”  He told his mother, his gaze on Kitty.  “She sounded so defeated.”


“And that is what triggered those thoughts?”


Matt nodded.  “She would have been better off if she had never come to Dodge… if she had never met me,” Matt said sadly as he met his mother’s eyes.  “Maybe it would have been better for everyone if you’d never given birth to me.”






“What’s wrong?”  Kitty’s head snapped up at Doc’s exclamation.


“I can’t get this second bullet out.”


“Doc…?”  Her voice trembled.


“I’m not giving up, Kitty.  Don’t you give up either.  Keep talking to him.”


Kitty mustered a brave smile for the physician before turning her attention back to the man lying nearly lifeless beside her.  She pressed a soft kiss to his graying hair before moving her lips to his ear.  “Matt…”




“Why can’t I hear what she’s saying?”


“Because it’s not time for you to hear it,” his mother said.


Dillon scowled.  “What do you mean, it’s not time?”


“It’s not yet time, son.  Be patient.  When it is time for you to hear and know, you will and not a moment before,” Laura answered.  “At the moment, however, we have other matters to contend with.”


“What other matters?”


Laura walked around the operating table to take his hand in hers.  “Come with me, Matthew,” she said, pulling him towards the office door, which swung open of its own accord.


Matt hesitated at the threshold, glancing back into the office at Doc and Kitty as they continued their vigil at his side.  “What about… ”


“All will remain as it is while we are on your journey,” his mother reassured him.  “Nothing will change until you have made your decision.


“My decision?”


“Yes.  Your decision of whether to live your life…” Laura paused and stepped out onto the landing, her gaze moving over the quiet town below before turning back to meet his eyes, “or to cease to exist.”


Dillon stared at his mother, who met his gaze squarely, then released a resigned breath and stepped out onto the landing with her.  The moment he was out of Adams’ office, the tall lawman noticed that, “Something’s different,” he said.


“You’re going to soon find out that many things are different,” Laura replied as she released his hand to descend the wooden stairs.


Matt followed her into the street, a deep frown forming on his face.  “It looks so… run down,” he told her, as his eyes continued to sweep up and down a darkened Front Street.


Many of the lamps were broken.  The few that weren’t, and were burning, were so dirty that they might as well have not had a flame in them at all.  Despite the darkness, Matt could see that instead of clean, well-maintained buildings, many of them were in massive disrepair.  Veritable skeletons of what he knew them to be.


He turned to look back up the stairs and frowned.  The window and door to Adams’ office were boarded up.  “What the… we just came from…” he glanced above his head, the frown on his face turning into a scowl.  “Where’s Doc’s sign?  It should be right here.  And the town…” Matt turned to his mother.  “What the hell is going on?”


“I told you,” Laura said, “You are being given a great gift, Matthew.  You have a chance to see what the world would be like without you.”  She reached out to take his hand but Matt pulled away.


“Tell me where Doc is!  Take me to him right now.”


Laura placed her hand on his arm, and suddenly they were standing on Boot Hill.  It was darker than in town, and the wind whipped around them, howling eerily.


“What are we doing here?”  Matt asked.  “I asked you take me to Doc.”


“I have, son.”  Laura pointed to a wooden grave marker.


Matt looked to the bleached out marker in front of them then crouched down to better read the name on it.  He stretched his arm out and traced the name carved into the wood.




Matt shook his head.  “It can’t be.  Doc’s alive.”


“Not in this time, Matthew.  Here, in this world, Doctor Adams is dead.”




“Nineteen years ago, he shot and killed a man named Clem Maddow.”


“Clem Maddow?  Clem…” Matt shook his head.  “No!  Doc wouldn’t do that!  He…” his voice trailed off.  “Clem…” Dillon’s eyes widened and he stood up.  “Clem Maddow.  I remember him.  Doc was going to shoot him, but I talked him out of it.  It was George… Clem’s brother that shot him, not Doc.”


“In another world, yes… it happened as you remember,” his mother said.  “However, in this world, a world where Matt Dillon does not exist, Doctor Adams was found guilty of murder and hung.”


Dillon hung his head and his whole body sagged with the news.  “Doc…” he murmured, and closed his eyes.


When he opened his eyes again, Matt found himself standing in the middle of Front Street once more.  The street was still… almost eerily so, and dark; the kind of darkness that was filled with shadows.  Matt peered into these shadows, his eyes moving up and down the street.


He spotted a man walking down the boardwalk towards them.  ‘No, not walking,’ Matt thought.  ‘Limping.’  As the man drew closer, Matt’s eyes widened.  “That’s… oh my God, that’s Chester.”


Dillon shook his head as he stared at his old friend.  He looked to be the same Chester he’d always known, and yet… he wasn’t.  His hair was longer, grayer, unkempt.  His face was aged; eyes sunken, cheeks hollow.  His whole bearing was a testament to a life that had been lived hard and without much joy.


Matt glanced over at his mother. 


Laura Dillon merely shook her head and gave her son a sad look.


Matt followed after the heavily limping man; trailing him as he slipped deeper into the shadows off Front Street, stepping into the dark alley between the buildings.  He watched Chester suddenly stop next to a pile of old crates stacked up against the back of one of the buildings, glance around then drop down to his good knee and crawl into the largest crate.


The marshal felt a powerful wave of sorrow wash over him as he stared down at his old friend.  He watched Chester shift around on the hard wood of the crate, trying to get comfortable as he drew a tattered old blanket around his shoulders.


“I don’t understand,” Matt said to his mother.  Chester left Dodge over ten years ago.  He went to Montana.  Got himself some land… started a ranch, and has been quite successful.  Last I heard, he was married and had a half dozen children.  What is he doing sleeping in a box in the alley?”


“He has no place else to stay.”


“What?  What about the jail?”


“He doesn’t work there.  In fact, this Chester does not have a job.”


“Why not?”


“No one in this town would hire him.”


Matt shook his head in disbelief.  “But Chester was well liked in Dodge.”


“In your Dodge, perhaps, but here… in this time… no one was willing to take a chance on a crippled man.”


“It was only his leg that was crippled, not his mind.  Chester was a good and loyal friend.  There were times when he could be annoying, and times when he was a little slow to catch on… but Chester was not a stupid man.  All he needed was a chance to prove it.”


“And you were not here to give Chester that chance, to give him a job,” Laura told him.  “Because of that, he was not given that opportunity to prove himself and gain confidence in himself.  That is why this Chester is here, living this way, and not in Montana on a ranch he owns with his wife and children.”


Matt frowned.  “What about my other friends?  Festus?  Quint?  Newly?  What’s happened to them?  Are they here in Dodge?”


“Festus is wanted for murder and is hiding out in the mountains,” Laura answered.  Quint and Newly are both dead.”


“Dead?  How?”


“Both were shot.  Quint by some buffalo hunter, and Newly by a man named Manez.”


Manez?  He’s the one who thought Newly was a doctor and kidnapped him.  Held him and Kitty…” Matt’s face suddenly paled.  He swallowed hard and his eyes locked with his mother’s as he whispered, “Kitty?”


“She’s alive, Matthew,” his mother answered softly.


“Is she here in Dodge?  Why haven’t you taken me to her?”  Matt asked anxiously.  He turned to walk back to Front Street but his mother’s hand on his arm stopped him.  He looked back at her and shook her head. 


Matt felt his heart skip a beat.  “What aren’t you telling me?  What’s wrong with Kitty?  Where is she?”  He swallowed hard.  “Is she… alive?”


“I told you she is, but she’s not in Dodge, son,” Laura turned and walked away.


Matt stood there for a moment, trying to process what she’d told him; first about his friends and then Kitty.  Or rather, what she hadn’t told him.  His mind racing, he turned to follow her, his longer strides bringing him to her side in moments.  Matt grabbed his mother’s arm.


“Tell me.”


Laura shook her head.


“Mother, tell me.  I have to know what happened to Kitty.  Where is she?”


Laura shook her head again.  “You won’t like it.  Trust me, Matthew.  All you need to know is that her life in this time is nothing like the life she lived with you.”


Dillon grasped his mother by her shoulders.  “Take me to her.  Take me to her now,” he implored her.  “Mother… please…”


Laura sighed, nodding reluctantly.


Moments later Matt found himself standing in a small, dimly lit room.  He looked at his mother, a question on his lips.  She shook her head and motioned with her hand for him to wait.  He released a deep breath as he resigned to wait.



The door opened and light from the hallway beyond spilled into the room as two shadowy figures entered – one walking gracefully, the other stumbling inside.  The door closed behind them, effectively plunging the room into near darkness again.


“Turn the lamp up, darling,” the gruff male voice said.


“It’s fine the way it is.”


“I said turn it up,” the man said again, a sharp edge to his voice.


“And I said it’s fine!”


A resounding slap, followed immediately by a sharp gasp, echoed through the room.


“Now… turn up that lamp like I tolya!”



Matt watched Kitty’s shadowy figure move closer to the table holding the lamp, and moments later, the room filled with light.  His eyes widened and he inhaled sharply at the sight before him.  “Kitty…” it was a whisper filled with profound sadness.


The thick auburn hair he loved, usually so elegantly coifed, was now dull, brassy and piled high on her head.  Gone were the decorative combs she usually favoured, replaced with simple pins.


Her makeup was caked on… thick and gaudy, hiding the beauty mark on her right cheek… the darker freckle he loved to see, and kiss whenever opportunity presented.  The excessive make up made Kitty look, not younger as was the intent, but older and more artificial. 


The dress she wore was little better.  It was stained, with a short skirt and an extremely low cut bodice.  So low cut that it barely covered her generous cleavage; cleavage that threatened to spill out with every breath she took.  Matt frowned.  She was also not wearing any jewellery, and her nails were chipped and dull; not polished as was her norm.



Thas better,” the cowboy slurred.  “Now… come’ere, Red.”  He reached out, grabbed Kitty and pulled her tight against him.  “Jesse is gonna make ya feel real good.”  His hands slid down her back to roughly grab a cheek of her rear in each hand as he ground his engorged member against her.  “Real good…”


Matt frowned when Jesse’s mouth crashed down on Kitty’s in a sloppy kiss.  He watched her hands curl into fists against the man’s shoulders, and could see the revulsion on her face as the kiss continued.  Kitty pushed against his chest, trying to end the kiss, but Jesse would have none of it.  He kept his mouth glued to hers, nearly gagging her with his tongue.


In desperation, Kitty yanked hard on his hair.


Jesse yelped in pain and released her.  He drew back and hit her; the stinging blow leaving a red welt on her cheek.  “You stupid bitch,” he swore and hit her again, this time knocking her back onto to the bed behind her.



Matt hands clenched into fists at his sides.



“I was gonna make this good for ya,” Jesse told her as he stepped up to the bed and loomed over Kitty, his fingers greedily working on the buttons of his fly.  “I was gonna go easy on ya… but no…” he opened his fly, and freed his erection, “…ya had to go and get all ornery with me.” 


“I’m sorry, Jesse.”  Kitty held up her hands in supplication.  “I’m sorry… I didn’t mean to… it won’t happen again.”


Jesse slid his pants down around his boot tops, and stroked himself with one hand.  Yer damn right it won’t,” he snarled.  “Now… get that dress off, and get back on the bed.  On yer knees.  I wanna see that purty ass of yours, Red.”


Kitty slowly got to her feet and reached back to begin unbuttoning her dress.


Yer takin too damned long,” Jesse told her, his voice thick with eagerness.  “Forget the dress; just get on yer knees on the bed.  I ain’t got all night.”


When Kitty continued to work at the buttons, Jesse swung at her, his fist connecting with her chin, and knocking her back onto the bed.  He pounced and rolled Kitty onto her stomach.  He grabbed her hips and pulled her onto her knees in one violent motion.



Matt turned toward his mother, rage in his eyes.  “Stop this!  Please stop it,” he pleaded through clenched teeth; every fibre of his being screaming at him to kill Jesse where he stood.


“I can’t,” she said, shaking her head sadly.  “This is not a dream, Matthew.  This is reality.  This is the life Kitty leads.  You wanted to see her… to see what her life was like in this time.”



Jesse pushed the skirt of her dress out of the way, and his face filled with unmitigated lust as he yanked at her pantaloons, tearing them and exposing her backside.  “Oh, Kitty… Jesse is gonna make ya purr,” he told her, his voice low, laced with barely contained excitement as he ran one hand over her naked rear and stepped in closer, nudging the head of his erection against her.



Matt shook his head and turned away, unable to watch the scene playing out before him yet unable to leave the room.


“No!  This is wrong.  This isn’t how it’s supposed to be,” he told his mother emphatically, a grimace crossing his face when he heard a grunt, followed by a low whimper, and then the unmistakable sounds of bodies slapping together.


“Kitty is the owner of the Long Branch.  She is a vital member of Dodge City’s business community, and is a respected business woman.  Something she fought long and hard for.  She’s not… she’s not…” his voice trailed off as he gestured blindly to the scene playing out before them; wincing at the loud groans and vocalizations Jesse was making as he drove himself into Kitty over and over.  “Kitty gave up this life when she stayed in Dodge,” Matt finished with a whisper.


“This Kitty did not stay in Dodge,” Laura told him and met his eyes as she explained.  “You weren’t at the café that day to make her want to stay in Dodge.  She got right back on that stage and when she ran out of money to ride further, she ended up here, finding the only work she could.”


“But why?  Even if she hadn’t remained in Dodge, surely she could have found different work, and not gone back to selling herself,” Matt replied, and found his gaze unwillingly drawn back to the bed.



“Oh yeah… so good…” Jesse moaned as he held Kitty’s hips in a bruising grip and continued to thrust against her.  “…so good… yeah… I’m gonna…” and with a loud triumphant grunt, Jesse’s body jerked as he came.


Kitty’s eyes were closed, her hands clenching in the quilt on her bed, and a grimace tightened on her face as Jesse continued to pump into her for several moments after his release.



“Oh, Kitty…” Matt whispered as he watched a tear slip from the corner of her eye to run over the bridge of her nose and fall to the blanket beneath her.  His eyes widened when Kitty’s opened and seemed to lock with his.  The despair and shame he saw in her blue depths made his heart break.



“Damn, you were good, Red,” Jesse’s voice broke the spell and her eyes fell shut once more. 


Jesse stepped back, withdrawing his now spent member and reached down to grab his pants and pull them up.  “Real good,” he said, giving her backside a hard slap.  “I’m gonna tell all my boys about you… they’ll love ya.”  With that, he tossed a few coins on the table next to her bed then left the room, laughing uproariously, and slamming the door shut behind him.


Kitty slid off the bed, curled up on the floor and began to sob.



Matt stepped over to Kitty and knelt down beside her.  Her tears had always felt like little daggers piercing his heart; each one a pain he wished he could heal for her.  He knew, too, that many of the tears she’d shed were caused by him, unintentional though they may have been.  He reached out to lay his hand on her shoulder, to offer her a bit of comfort and scowled when his hand passed right through her.


“This isn’t right,” Matt said quietly to his mother.  “She doesn’t deserve this.  I thought…” his voice trailed off.


“Do you see now, son?” Laura walked over to stand beside him.  “Life is a tapestry.  Our lives are interwoven, like threads, with so many other lives, creating a beautiful work of art… and when we pull on one of those threads, it unravels that tapestry.”


Matt nodded and his gaze never wavered from Kitty as she continued to sob.  He ran his hand over her hair, even though he knew he could not touch her.  He stood and faced his mother.  “I’ve always thought she be better off without me… that she’d find someone else… someone with the means to take care of her and give her the life she deserved.  To marry her and give her children.”  A soft smile touched his lips.  “She would have made an amazing mother.  She’s so good with children, and they love her so.”


“It comes from having a loving heart,” Laura replied softly.


“Yeah,” he agreed.


“You’ve made your decision then?”


Matt nodded.




“Got it!”


Doc’s voice jolted Kitty and she looked up from her perch at the head of the operating table, where she had been stroking Matt’s hair.  “Doc?”


Dropping the hunk of metal into the nearby dish with a loud clang, he gave her a relieved stare.


“Does that mean he’s going to be… Kitty’s voice trailed off.  Her eyes were focused on Matt’s bare chest.  “Oh God, Doc, he’s not breathing!”  She suddenly exclaimed.




Matt looked at his mother.  “What’s happening?”


“Your decision is being made for you,” Laura responded.




“Doc!  Doc, do something!”  Kitty cried frantically.


“I’m tryin’!”  Doc answered, his voice deceptively calm as he pressed his stethoscope to Matt’s chest.  “His heart’s stopped.”


“Oh… God… no!”




“Oh God no!”  Matt said, watching the scene unfold before him with morbid curiosity.




Doc pounded on Matt’s chest.


“What are you doing?”


“Trying to get his heart to start beating again,” Doc replied.  “Come on, Matt!  Come on!”  His fist landed on the big man’s chest again… then again.  “By thunder, I said come on!  Fight damn you!”


“Matt… please…” Kitty begged, tears running down her face.  “Please don’t leave me… I love you… so much… please, Matt!”  She pressed her cheek against his, her lips nuzzling his ear.  “Matt…”




Matt turned back to his mother, a large, brilliant smile stretching across his face.


Laura returned his smile as she reached out to cup his cheek.  “Have a good life, Matthew.”




A loud gasp filled the room, followed by a deep, ragged inhalation.


“Got him!”  Doc crowed triumphantly.


Kitty closed her eyes.  “Oh, thank God!”


“…Kitty?”  It was barely a whisper from Matt’s lips, but she heard it as if he’d shouted it.


“I’m here, Cowboy,” Kitty answered, moving around so that he could see her as he opened his eyes.


“Kitty,” the smile in his voice graced his lips and lit his eyes, even as they fought to focus on her.  “Kitty…” he said her name again as he lifted his hand from the table, wanting to touch her.  In his weakened condition, he managed to only to reach her stomach.  Matt laid his hand against her, relief flooding his face at the contact.  “You’re real…”


She smiled and nodded; her eyes bright with unshed tears, as she covered his hand with hers and held it against her.  “I’m real.”


“Kitty…” his fingers flexed under hers and his eyes closed then fluttered open again to look at her.  “I… will…” Matt shook his head slowly, fighting against the sleep he could feel trying to pull him back under.  “…Kitty…”


“Ssh… rest, Matt.  Just rest,” Kitty told him and smoothed her free hand over his brow.  “I’m not going anywhere.”


“No… I… need to ask you… I want… Kitty…” Matt forced his eyes open and held her gaze.  “I want you… to be my wife…” a soft smile touched his lips.  “Marry me?”


“Oh!”  Kitty gasped; her eyes widening in surprise.  She quickly glanced at Doc, seeing the same surprise on his weathered face then turned back to Matt.  She shook her head, convinced that he was just in shock.  “Ask me again when you mean it, Cowboy, now sleep.”


“No!”  Matt shook his head and turned his hand under hers, curling his fingers around hers and squeezing gently.  “I’m serious.  I love you… want to marry you.”


Kitty leaned closer and peered into his eyes.  “You’re really serious?”


“I am…”


“Yes…” it was barely audible as Kitty whispered her lips against his, but Matt heard it and a dazzling smile filled his face.  “…thank you…” he murmured before losing the battle and falling unconscious; the smile still on his face.


Kitty turned, lifting bright eyes to the physician.


“I’ll be,” Doc smiled.  “Congratulations, Kitty.”


She shook her head, even as she continued to smile.  “Thanks, Doc.  But let’s wait and see what happens once he’s healed.”


Doc nodded, winked at her, and then went back to work cleaning and suturing Matt’s wounds.


Kitty watched him for a moment then turned back to gaze at Matt’s face, a wistful and hopeful look on her face.




Matt laced his fingers behind his head and leaned back against the pillows propped up against the headboard.  Naked, with just the corner of the sheet covering him; his eyes were on Kitty, watching her as she moved about the room.


He smiled when she stopped in front of the large bay window and watched as the breeze blowing in rustled the gauzy white gown she wore and lifted the ends of her fiery hair to dance around her shoulders like flickering flames.  She was, in a word, beautiful, and the sight stirred something deep inside him.


Kitty looked back over her shoulder at him, and a broad smile spread across her face.  “Oh, Matt… this is incredible,” she exhaled, her voice laced with excitement.  “I… I can’t believe you did this!”  She turned back to the window and looked out over the city, her eyes settling on the bay in the waning light of the setting sun.


Matt chuckled softly.  It made him feel good to see her so happy.  “Kitty…” he called to her softly.  “Come here.”


With a final glance through the window, Kitty turned and slowly made her way towards him.  At the foot of the large bed, she gathered the skirt of her nightgown then climbed up onto the mattress.


He watched her advance slowly up the bed towards him; the sight, one of the most alluring and arousing he’d ever seen.  The hungry look on her face only added to his desire, and left little doubt in his mind of her intentions.  As she drew closer, Matt pulled the sheet away, leaving himself bare to her gaze.


Kitty licked her lips at the sight of Matt’s arousal, and felt a rush of moisture to her centre with the knowledge, that very soon; he would be buried deep inside her.  She paused in her ascent up the bed to dip her head and run her tongue along the length of his shaft.


“Kitty…” Matt groaned as her lips closed around the head and sucked gently.  She released him after a moment and resumed her crawl up the bed until she was straddling him; his erection trapped between his belly and her damp curls.


Their mouths came together in a gentle kiss that was in sharp contrast to the desire coursing through them.


“Happy, Mrs. Dillon?”  Matt whispered the question against her lips.


“Very much so, Mr. Dillon,” Kitty whispered back, her lips melding to his for a deeper kiss.  After several long moments, she pulled out of the kiss, and looked around the opulent hotel room.  “I still can’t believe you brought me to San Francisco.”


Matt stroked her back.  “Well, I know you’ve wanted to come back here for quite a while,” he smiled.  “So I decided it would be the perfect place for our honeymoon.”


“But, how…” her eyes met his again.  “Matt, how can you afford all this?”


“After that talk we had when Adam was in Dodge, I realized that a lot of what you said made sense, and I also realized that I did not want to end up like him.  So I… made a couple of investments.”


Kitty sat up a little straighter as she gave him a curious look.  “You did?”


“Yeah,” he murmured.  “Do you remember that gathering of the US Marshals I had to attend in Atlanta not too long after that?”




“I met a man in the hotel bar by the name of Candler, and we got to talking over drinks,” Matt related the story to her while he continued to run his fingers up and down Kitty’s back.  “He was looking for a few investors for this soda pop of his…”


“Soda pop?”


“Yeah…” Matt murmured as he dipped his head and began to nuzzle the upper swells of her chest.  “The drink that refreshes was the line he used to describe it.”


“…catchy…” Kitty replied, moaning softly when his fingers tugged the straps of her nightgown off her shoulders, and eased them down her arms to uncover her full breasts.


“He had a sample with him,” he told her with a flick of his tongue against a rising nipple.


“And…” it came out as a low whimper as his lips closed around the turgid peak.


“It was good.  I enjoyed it.  And,” Matt replied as he kissed his way to her other breast.  “It reminded me of you,” he said as he swallowed up the full mound in front of him.


“A soda pop reminded you of me?”  Kitty grasped his head and made him look at her as she repeated her question.


He chuckled.  “Yes.  It was sweet, bubbly and refreshing,” he said it with straight face, but the twinkle in his eyes showed his amusement.


Kitty swatted his chest.  “Matt Dillon!”  She exclaimed then laughed softly at his low chuckle.  Her fingers slipped into his thick hair and she sighed happily; uttering a soft,   “I love you.”


“I love you too,” Dillon told her, his eyes growing dark as desire once again came to the fore.  “Let me show you how much,” he said as he worked her nightgown up and off of her, tossing it to the floor and leaving her gloriously naked in his lap.


Kitty leaned closer and feathered her lips over his.  “Before you do that… I have a wedding gift for you.”


“Kitty… you didn’t need to get me anything.”


“Well, this gift… you actually gave me first,” she replied and then her eyes grew wide when he laid his right hand on her stomach.


“How far along are you?”  Matt asked her.


“How did you… Doc told you!!”  Kitty exclaimed and a pout found its way to her lips.


Dillon shook his head.  “Doc didn’t tell me a thing.”


“Then how did you know?”


Matt rubbed his hand over the barely discernable swell of her belly. “You told me,” he whispered.


“I tol…” a perplexed look filled Kitty’s face before her eyes widened even more.  “You heard me?”


“I heard you,” he replied as his left hand joined his right, framing her stomach.  “Soft whispers in my ear, telling me that I was going to be a father.”  Matt lifted his eyes to meet hers.  “And before you ask… no, that is not the reason I asked you to marry me.  I had been planning on asking you when we were on our trip.”


Kitty smiled and covered his hands, holding them against her belly and shook her head slowly.  “It doesn’t matter… we’re married.  We’re having a baby, and…” her smile softened into a sensual one as she flexed her fingers against his, “I do believe, Marshal, that you were about to show me how much you love me.”


His hands slid out from under hers, moved around to her back, and down to cup her rear.  “Yes… I was,” he said and pulled her closer.


Twin moans echoed throughout the room as the move allowed Matt’s erection to slip between the swollen folds of her sex.  Kitty rocked against him, coating his length with her arousal, and moaning as the head of his shaft rubbed against her clit.


Matt nuzzled his face between her breasts, inhaling the familiar scent of his woman’s skin before he pulled a pebbled nipple into his mouth.  He suckled hungrily, swirling his tongue around the hard point for several moments then moved to take her other nipple between his lips.


Kitty arched into him in an effort to push more of her breast into his mouth.  Her fingers clenched in his thick hair and she held him against her, moaning his name as she continued to move against him.


His hands traveled up her back to thread his long fingers in her luxurious red locks.  He tugged her head back and released her nipple to blister her chest with hot, wet kisses; trailing his lips up along the smooth column of her throat until he found her mouth once again.


“I need to be inside you,” Matt spoke against her lips as he lifted his hips under her, pressing his need tighter against her centre.


“Yes…” Kitty gasped and rose up on her knees.  She dropped a hand between the close press of their bodies to wrap her fingers around him and stroke him.


Matt dropped a hand back down, and curled his fingers around the smooth globe of her rear, slipping them between her thighs and then into her warmth.  “…so hot… so wet…” he murmured into her mouth as he moved his long fingers in and out of her.


“…Matt…” Kitty moaned and thrust against his hand.  Her own hand clenched rhythmically around his shaft in time with the motion of his long fingers working inside her.  “No…” Kitty whimpered when Matt suddenly withdrew them.


“I need to be inside you,” he told her again, his voice hoarse with that need as he grasped her hips.  Kitty nodded as she guided him into position, the broad head of his erection nudging against her opening.


“Oh yesss…” she hissed as she slowly sank down on him.


Her eyes falling closed, Kitty savoured the feeling, having always loved the first moment of joining her body to his.  The feeling of his thickness stretching and filling her… the feeling of being utterly possessed in the most intimate of ways.  It was a heady and overwhelming sensation; one that always left her gasping for breath and her heart overflowing with love for the man whose body was beneath and inside hers.




At the whisper of her name, Kitty opened her eyes to find his focused intently on her.  She could feel herself drowning in the deep blue ocean of his eyes; in the passion, desire and utter want and need radiating off of him in almost devastating waves.


Matt watched her.  Watched the emotions dance on her face, and in her eyes as they became one physically.  He knew she loved the feeling him inside her, especially that first moment of their joining.  It was a feeling he enjoyed as well.  The feel of her hot, wet and snug around his length… quivering to adjust to his girth… was one he would never tire of.


He slowly drew his knees up and with a whispered, “Ride me, honey…” Matt’s hands tightened on her hips as he encouraged her to start moving on him.  Kitty gripped his shoulders and began to raise and lower her hips, taking him in and out of her body.


“Mmm… oh, Matt…” Kitty moaned at the sensations coursing through her as she continued to move on him in a steady rhythm.  She leaned in close, allowing her breasts to rub against his chest, abrading her nipples in the soft whirls of hair that dusted his broad muscular chest.


Matt’s fingers flexed on her hips and urged her to move faster… to take him deeper.  He needed to be deeper.  He groaned and tried to push as deep as he could inside her but was unable to get the leverage he needed.  His arms wound around her and held her tight against him as he shifted; somehow managing to get to his knees without separating their bodies, and then pressed her down into the mattress.


Kitty wrapped her legs around Matt’s waist, and they both moaned in pleasure as he sank deep inside and immediately began to thrust into her.  Her hands clutched at his head, pulling him down to kiss him hungrily, her tongue matching the frantic drive of his hips.


They moved in tandem, bodies surging and gliding against and into each other; building the tension and the pleasure.  Moans and gasps filled the air, mingled with the sounds of their bodies coming together.


Matt broke off the kiss, pushed up on his arms and continued moving inside her.  His gaze dropped to her chest, watching her breasts dance on her chest with every thrust of his hips.  Over and over, he moved inside her, pushing his erection deeper into her hot moist depths.


Kitty whimpered, a low deep sound of delight, when he began to grind his pelvis against hers with every down thrust; circling hard against her clit and sending shards of pleasure through every nerve in her body.


“Kitty…” his voice was rough with the unmistakable need to find release.  He was close.  He could feel it in the tingling at the base of his spine, and he told her so.


“I am too,” she told him breathlessly and grasped his wrists.  “Give us what we need, Matt.  Make us cum…”


At her words, Matt released a low growl of her name as he stopped moving and reached down to grasp her thigh.  He drew her leg up then slipped his arm into the bend of her leg, opening her even more, allowing him to delve even deeper than before.


“Yes!  Just like that,” Kitty encouraged him as he resumed thrusting; swinging into a faster and harder rhythm.  She released his wrists and reached up to wrap her fingers around the spindles of the headboard and lifted her hips into his thrusts, pulling him into her with the leg still wrapped around his waist.


It wasn’t long before control fled, and left both to drown in a tidal wave of raw passion and sensation as their bodies moved together with single-minded purpose towards their shared goal. 


Matt rode Kitty hard.  Pounding into her, over and over, until suddenly she was crying out his name.  Her body writhed and thrashed beneath his, her leg locking around his waist, trying desperately to hold him in place as her orgasm consumed her.


The feel of Kitty’s inner walls contracting and pulsing around his manhood was Matt’s undoing.  He surged into her, pushing deeper and deeper until with a final, sharp thrust, he came with a hoarse yell of her name; his essence jetting out of him to flood her insides with his warmth.  He collapsed on top of her, and nestled into her waiting embrace even as his hips continued to rock into and against hers.


Kitty ran her hands lovingly up and down his sweaty back and exhaled a sigh of relief when Matt released her leg, allowing her to lower it and entangle the long limb loosely with his.  She nuzzled his temple, humming softly in contentment when he slid his arms around her and rolled them onto their sides.


Neither one spoke, and the room was quiet save for the noises drifting in through the window from the street below.  Their breaths mingled with the sounds from outside as they sought to bring them under control.  They contented themselves with soft touches from wandering hands and feathery light kisses as they lay with their heads at the foot of the bed.


After a while, feeling sleep encroach on them, Matt and Kitty shifted around so that they were lying on the bed properly.  Matt drew the sheet up over them as Kitty settled against his side, laying her head on his chest above his heart.  His hand slipped into her hair and he combed the long tresses with his fingers.


Releasing a contented sigh, Kitty snuggled closer as she played idly with a loose thread on the sheet covering them.  When she twisted it around her finger and moved to pull it free, Matt’s hand covered hers.


“Don’t…” he told her in a quiet voice.


“It’s just a loose thread.”


“Maybe,” Matt began.  “But that loose thread is still attached, and pulling it could lead to the sheet unraveling.”


Something in his voice, the serious inflection it held, made Kitty lift her head to meet his eyes.  There was more behind his words than just a loose thread on a hotel blanket, and she asked him about it.


He cocked his head to the side as he contemplated how to answer her.  He’d not told her about what had happened while he was on Doc’s operating table… about seeing his mother, and seeing what life would have been like without him.


“When I was lying on Doc’s table with those two bullets in me,” Matt began, still searching for a way to explain what happened, not overly certain he believed it really had, and yet knowing that it had indeed happened.  “When I was on that table,” he repeated, “I had… a strange experience.”


“Strange how?”  Kitty asked and propped herself up on her elbow as she continued to look down at him.


“I saw my mother,” he whispered.


“Your mother?”


“Mmhmm,” Matt nodded then looked uncomfortable as he began to tell her what happened.  “I could see myself, Kitty, lying on Doc’s table.  You were there beside me, begging me to fight while Doc was trying to remove the bullets, and then all of a sudden, she was there.”


“What did she want?”


“When I left the Long Branch after our argument,” he reached up to caress her cheek, shaking his head softly as she winced at the memory.  “The only thing that kept running through my mind was that you would be better off without me,” his finger on her lips prevented her from voicing the protest he could see in her eyes as he continued, “that your life, and those of my friends, would have been happier had I never been born.  My mother showed me differently.”


Matt smiled up at her as he traced the thread from the sheet that was still wrapped around her finger.  “Seeing you play with this, reminded me of something she told me.”


“What was that?”  Kitty asked, the tone of her voice telling him that she believed what he’d been telling her.


“That life is a tapestry and is interwoven with so many other lives, and if we pull on a loose thread we could unravel that tapestry.”


Kitty smiled and unwrapped the loose string from her finger.  “Wise woman your mother.”


“Yeah, she is.”  Matt nodded his agreement.  “It was those words that convinced me that I needed to fight.  That there has been more good between us these last twenty years, than there has been bad.  That you,” he cupped her cheek in his large hand, “are worth living for.”


“…oh, Matt…” Kitty whispered, her eyes full of love and bright with unshed tears.


“I love you, Kathleen Dillon,” Matt told her, his voice full of the emotion he usually kept a strong hold on.  “I have loved you from that first moment I laid eyes on you in Delmonico’s, and I always will.”


He drew her down to him, and kissed her.  A gentle kiss, imbued with all the love he felt for her.


“Never doubt it.”


“Never,” Kitty murmured against his lips.


They shared a series of soft, loving kisses before Kitty settled, once again, at his side; her head on his shoulder.


“I love you too, Cowboy,” she told him and felt him smile against her temple.


Matt grasped her hand in his and held them to his heart…


…their fingers interwoven like threads in a tapestry.





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