Looking back now, Kathy was sick the whole time. The way she would cough and spit up in the middle of the night. Her death is hitting me hard right now, and I can't do anything but blame myself. I should have been looking for the signs. I could have seen it, and it was all so obvious. I let her hide it from me and I never knew.

It all started when she started sleeping with that old prospector. A man like him doesn't do anything but blow dust and disease out of his pecker. He paid good, that's why she kept going back. He did things to her, made he put things inside herself that no lady should have to. We're hookers, but we got dignity damnit.

I don't want anything more right now than to walk up to his home and shoot him in the head myself. Then nobody would be around to teach the children. This town wouldn't be anything without us. We own the bar, the restaurants and the schools. Still they call us whores the minute they roll themselves off us. The men bring gold to this town but they'd have to eat it before they figured out what to do with it. We do everything else around here. 

Kathy told me everything that would happen and I didn't listen. It took her dying for me to see that she had the answers. She always had the answers. I should have listened, but I was concentrated on myself like a damn fool. Kathy, I ain't gonna let you die in vain darling. 

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