Someday, We'll Laugh About This, But Not Tonight
by  d. b. brisbin


Based upon a request for a January 2, story and reviewing the list of unbelievable holidays provided by Janet, I decided to write this one to celebrate the week of January 29 reputed to be, among other things, National "Someday Weíll Laugh About This" Week.

Please note, there is some profanity and light sexual content mixed with hopefully, a lot of humor.

Titled "Someday Weíll Laugh About This" it could also be called, "Johnny Gets Busted!"


Scott felt guilty riding into town alone. Poor Johnny had been working so hard and things had really been going well between him and their father, Murdoch, until Johnny had gotten into a fight in town virtually destroying the saloon, and after which, Murdoch had forbade him from going into town again for a month. Since whatever had happened on the patio on New Yearís Eve between the father and Scottís younger brother, Johnny had really seemed to be coming to grips with his new life as a rancher; the former gunfighter was really starting to appear to be more confident in his relationship with their father. The real test was going to be next week when Murdoch would be gone for a week and their Ďsisterí Teresa would also be gone for three days. Would Johnny defy his father as usual and go into town anyway, or would he comply with his fatherís demands in his seemingly new found comfort of a new life. There must be some way to reward Johnny and at the same time, prevent him from crossing Murdoch and endangering the new found peace around the ranch and in their personal relationships.

The idea came to him after he seated himself at a table in the saloon. Cindy, Ďhis girlí had immediately strolled over with his favorite whiskey in tow. Moments later, Becky, one of ĎJohnnyís girlsí stopped by to give him a doe eyed look. ĎYep,í he thought, ĎI see why Johnny canít resist her.í looking into her green eyes. "Did my Johnny come out to play?" She asked him.

"No Becky, Iím sorry, but heís still having to work off my fatherís anger about that fight. Murdoch was really pissed at having to pay for both the mirror behind the bar and Jakeís new window at the same time." 

"Your father is a mean man, making my Johnny stay home and away from me."

"Well, he can be stubborn, especially when it comes to unnecessary expenditures."

"Unnecessary what?"

"You know, expenditures. Spending money on things that it didnít need or have to be spent on."

"Oh, right. Tell Johnny I sure do miss him something awful."

"I will Becky, I will. Iím sure heís missing you too." This made her beam like a beacon. That is when the idea came to him.

Johnny rode up to the hacienda tired and dusty. He was really coming to the end of his limited patience with all this work Murdoch was giving him for tearing up the saloon. All day he had thought about sneaking into town. He could hide Barranca in the alley behind the saloon and take the back door and get someone to find Becky and sneak upstairs with her without anyone knowing about it except the girls, and they wouldnít tell. The only thing that kept him from doing it was the conversation that he and his father had on New Yearís Eve. For the first time, he really did feel like his father loved him without stipulations being placed on it and he really didnít want to cause his father any disappointment that wasnít necessary. He knew that he would eventually screw up, but if he could just make it a little longer, it would be one less bad moment between them and he really did feel that he would make his father proud if he could just get through this month without any issues. But other urges were equally strong and pulling at him like water to a thirsty man.

Well, at least tonight, it would just be him and Scott. Teresa had left yesterday and Murdoch had been gone for two days already. Jelly had gone out with the chuck wagon to feed a crew for two days on a new long term fencing project. He was looking forward to a drink and a very casual dinner as even Maria would be gone for the evening to her sisterís. She had promised to leave Johnny and Scott dinner warming and chocolate cake in her absence.

Raphael had been at the barn when he saw Johnny ride up and came over and offered to take his horse for him. Normally Johnny would want to attend to his beloved palomino himself, but he really wanted nothing more than to get a good soak in that new tub that Murdoch had had installed as a family Christmas present. Indoor pluming was uncommon in an area such as theirs, but once Teresa had sampled it in a San Francisco hotel, coupled with Scottís familiarity with it back east, leading to Scottís being able to convince Murdoch that it would be a simpler way to relieve his back pain, so the Olí Man relented. Johnny apologized to Barranca, "Sorry boy, but maybe after dinner, Iíll come out and give you a big juicy apple, huh?" He patted the stallion on the neck before he was led away. The horse, before leaving, bumped his master on the shoulder with his nose as if to say, "Youíd better."

Inside, Johnny pulled off his boots in the foyer and padded in his sock feet into the great room and poured himself a glass of one of Murdochís finest whiskies. Taking the glass, he padded upstairs to his bedroom, marveling at the quiet of the big house. Wondering where Scott was, but grateful that he had obviously beaten him home so he could have a crack at a long hot bath.

Pushing open the door to his room, movement caught his eye and he drew his gun with blinding speed. A squeal stopped him cold. In front of him stood Becky and Caroline, two of Ďhisí girls from the saloon. They were skimpily clad in tight black leather bodices with extremely short red satin skirts. Not something seen in public. Their long legs were covered by black fishnet hosiery held up by black laced garters.

"Hey there Johnny. Weíve been missiní ya so much." Becky drawled. Johnny couldnít take his eyes off of the two girls, although he did manage to holster his Colt. Caroline was holding a bottle of champagne and Becky had a note tied with silver ribbon around her neck. Johnnyís eyes lit up, along with the rest of his body, and he finally managed to ask, "What are you girls doiní here?"

Becky walked up to him and put her hands around his neck and replied, "Read the card." 

Johnny reached under her arm to set his drink on the dresser and then tried to kiss Becky, who leaned back and said, "No, no, not until you read the card!"

He reached up and pulled on the ribbon, which easily came untied and opened the envelope attached to it. Inside he read the words, "To my most deserving little brother. I am very proud of you and your determination to get through this month without issue. I canít take you to town with me, so I thought Iíd bring town to you. No one deserves this little treat more than you, but letís keep it our secret. And yes, this is in the ĎBig Brother Book of Rulesí for special occasions." It was signed, "Your handsome and loving Big Brother."

Johnny broke into a great big grin and yelled, "Whooooeeeee!" Throwing the card to the floor, he took Becky in his arms for a long deep kiss, picking her up as she wrapped her legs around him. He made his way to the bed with her while Caroline opened the champagne and poured three flutes worth and joined them on the bed.

Their initial cavorting left them momentarily exhausted and they had slept for a brief time among the strewn clothing and twisted sheets and blankets. Waking, Johnny told them about their new indoor plumbing and about wanting a hot soak. "We can help you with that too Johnny." Caroline told him, giving Becky a wicked look.

Caroline picked up the bucket of champagne and they each took their glasses and made their way to the room next door, sans clothes, where their next playground would be. The girls marveled at the tub and picked through the bath salts that were on the shelf next to it, finding something that they liked and pouring not only salts for scent, but something that also made bubbles. While they waited for the tub to fill, Becky and Johnny locked into a frontal embrace, with Caroline pressed against Johnny from behind, kissing, stroking, moaning, and occasionally, sipping the champagne.

When the tub was filled to an acceptable level and the temperature approved by all three, Caroline got into the tub and leaned against the back, spreading her legs so that Johnny could get in next and sit down with his back to her. Becky then stepped in and straddled Johnny, facing him. Johnny thought to himself that it was a good damn thing they had this giant custom tub made on account of Murdochís great size. Otherwise, the three of them would have never fit in there like this. The girls gave Johnny the most sensual bath and shampoo that he had ever had. While he was completely relaxed, every nerve was sparkling with excitement and pleasure at the experience. They had also brought along a little box of strawberries and chocolate, items not only consumed, but used to enhance their sexual delight as was the champagne.

Lost in complete ecstasy as Becky mounted him and rode him with as much grace as he rode Barranca, Johnny was truly thankful for his big brotherís idea. Caroline from behind was teasing him with her long slender fingers and tongue. Suddenly, their little orgy was interrupted by the door slamming against the wall and Murdochís bellow of "WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON IN HERE?!"

Johnny and the two girls all jumped nearly out of their skin and then froze where they were. Johnny, looking as he were about to meet his maker, saw from under Murdochís large frame in the doorway, Teresa, standing next to him, peering at them through the space made clear by the fact that Murdoch had his hands resting on the top of the door frame. Except that he was in fear for his life, he would have cackled at the expression on her face. Her eyes were pretty much bugged out of her head and she had both hands over her mouth, with her elbows sticking out at the sides.

For a brief moment, time stood still before Murdoch bellowed, "TERESA, GET TO YOUR ROOM NOW!" Teresa turned and ran for her room, slamming the door closed and resting her back against it breathing hard. She could not get that image out of her mind. Could not believe what she had just witnessed.

Johnny and the girls, who all suddenly felt cold and small remained completely still in the tub, afraid to move. As Murdoch glared at them, Johnny felt that hot feeling of a blush completely taking over his face and noticed that Murdochís face was not only purple, but that vein on the side of his head actually looked liked it was pulsating. Caroline, trying not to show fear, looked up and smiled, "Well hey there big man. Wanna join us?"


The two girls and Johnny disentangled themselves as modestly as they could, leaving the girls standing naked beside the tub and Johnny still in the tub.

"GOD DAMN YOU JOHN! WHAT IN THE HELL IS THIS?" Johnnyís heart beat as fast as a rabbitís running from a wolf. He didnít think he had ever been so afraid. He was so terrified, that even Madrid had turned and run and wouldnít come out to defend him.

Looking at the two naked girls, Murdoch bellowed again, "GET YOUR DAMNED CLOTHES ON! DONíT JUST STAND THERE!" They looked at him and edged towards the door. There was only one way in and one way out, with their clothes having been left in Johnnyís room next door.

"If youíll excuse us, uh, sir, theyíre in Johnnyís room." Becky choked out. As they approached him, Murdoch turned sideways to allow their passage, but continued to block the door, glaring at Johnny who still hadnít moved.

Fortunately, the girls had brought some simple cotton dresses which had been used to travel to the ranch in and threw those on in haste, grabbing up their costumes and shoes and ran barefoot down the back staircase, passing Scott, who stood petrified at his bedroom door staring at Murdoch. He had fallen asleep in his room with a drink and a book and had been awakened with Murdochís initial bellow. His heart was in his throat. Johnny was in some major trouble and it was all because of him. Knowing that Johnny would most certainly just take the blame and not tell his father of the set up, Scott knew that he could not allow it. He had to share the blame or take responsibility all together. The fact that Teresa had witnessed God knows what, only exacerbated the situation.

After the girls had skittered down the hall with their belongings, he followed them outside to be sure that they were okay and to reassure them that he would take square things between Murdoch and Johnny. As he descended the backstairs he could hear Murdoch bellow yet again at Johnny, "GET YOUR GOD DAMNED ASS OUT OF THAT TUB AND INTO YOUR ROOM, NOW JOHN, NOW!"

Johnny reached a shaking hand out of the tub and grabbed a large bath towel pulling it in front of himself as he stood and then secured it around his waist.

"WHY SO MODEST JOHN? YOUíVE NOTHING TO HIDE, AT LEAST NOT ANYMORE!" Murdoch was still bellowing. It seemed that it was going to be the only decibel that he would be using in the near future.

Johnny, still speechless, searching for exactly what to say, stepped out of the tub, head down, and walked towards the door like a two year old about to be sent to his room for a spanking. Murdoch stepped back to allow his exit, and followed him to his bedroom, slamming the door behind him.

Inside, Johnny sat down on his bed and put his elbows on his thighs and his head in his hands. As soon as he sensed Murdoch enter the room, he tried to make amends, choking out, "Iím sorry Murdoch, Iím sorry. Iíll, Iíll get my bags packed and be out of here right away. Just, just give me a few minutes to get packed." He stammered. He was cold now and starting to shiver. He was both humiliated and sick over the situation.

Murdoch stared at Johnny. The boy looked completely forlorn. Sitting, with his head down and trembling, he looked so much like a small toddler that Murdoch remembered. And he himself felt just like he had when that adorable little boy had gotten into trouble before, he was completely helpless. Standing there, towering over the son he had searched for, for so long, that he had finally begun to have a warm and trusting relationship with, he was completely speechless. What to say? He was so angry that Johnny had disrespected his home in such a manner, not to mention, that an innocent like Teresa had pretty much caught them in the act. Just how in hell does a father handle a situation like this? What the hell was he supposed to say or DO for that matter. He couldnít very well turn him over his knee and beat his behind, although that was his first thought. He tried to be calm and rational, but as he began to talk, he just completely lost his temper.

Scott came down the hall. He could hear Murdoch bellowing from outside, even over the sound of the buggy leaving hell for leather with the girls. In fact, because Johnnyís window must have been open, he thought he saw some of the hands come out of the bunkhouse, able to hear the rampage all the way inside their quarters.

He reached Johnnyís door and turned the knob, opening it. The scene broke his heart. Johnny sat quivering on the bed, just in his towel, head down in his hands, elbows on his thighs, rocking back and forth. Murdoch was raging around like a bull after a matador.

Scott spoke softly, "Murdoch?" He had to repeat himself a couple of times and finally, walked all the way into the room, and closed the door behind himself. The movement finally caught Murdochís eye. "Murdoch?"


"No sir, I donít believe it is."



With that, Johnny let out a moan. Seeing his brotherís skin blanche, he dove to the floor and pulled out the chamber pot and pushed it into Johnnyís lap. He then got up and sat next to him, placing an arm around his shoulders as Johnny vomited into the pot. The experience, while miserable to both, was preferred over the nerve jarring sound of Murdochís rage, which had stopped momentarily.


Sam Jenkins had entered the house.  He was at a neighboring ranch on a call and at the turn to the Lancer ranch had seen the buggy racing out of the drive and towards town. Unable to stop the girls and find out if there was an emergency, he turned and headed down the drive. When he pulled into yard, he could hear Murdoch bellowing from upstairs and saw the ranch hands milling around outside, some smoking, but most, looking tense.

"Who is it?" he called out, grabbing his bag and running into the house.

Someone called out, "we think itís Johnny!"

Why am I not surprised?  He thought to himself as he made his way upstairs to Johnnyís room, seeing as there was no one downstairs. He could hear Murdoch raging away, wondering why in hell he would be yelling at his injured son. Sweeping the door open, he found Scott comforting Johnny who was vomiting into the chamber pot. Murdoch was standing to the side with a disgusted sneer on his face.

Sam knelt in front of Johnny, taking the chamber pot away and placing it on the floor, out of the way. He took Johnnyís hand and looked up at him. Johnnyís eyes were closed. "Johnny, son, whatís wrong?"

Johnny opened his eyes and looked at Sam. In those beautiful deep blue eyes, Sam saw the depths of pain like he had never seen before in them. Not even when Johnny had suffered the bullet wound that narrowly missed his heart. "Nothiní Sam, nothiní that you can fix."

"No Johnny, no. Let me be the judge of that. Just tell me where it hurts and if I canít Iíll get someone who can."

Johnny closed his eyes again. Sam looked at Scott who also shook his head and then up at Murdoch. "Just what the hell is going on here Murdoch?" Is he injured or not?

"NO SAM, NO! JOHNNYíS NOT INJURED!" he shouted sarcastically. "BUT HE DAMN WELL SHOULD BE! I donít even know how to explain this, other than to just say it. TERESA AND I WALKED IN ON JOHNNY. . . . . ." he hesitated as he tried to find an acceptable word, "JOHNNY AND TWO WHORES FROM THE SALOON COPULATING IN THE BATHTUB!"

The pause became very pregnant as Sam absorbed this information and attempted to come up with a response. He had to bite the inside of his cheek until he was sure that he could taste blood to keep from laughing at the expression on Murdochís face. Finally, as stoically as he could, he said, "No, I guess youíre right, I canít fix that, unless of course you think you have contracted a disease. Do you think that Johnny?" He had to look at Johnny to keep himself under control. One look at him would sober anyone.

Scott bit his lip as hard as he could and closed his eyes at Samís question. If it werenít for the serious possibility that his brother would either be thrown out or would leave, he probably would have laughed until he cried at Samís question to Johnny. But this was no laughing matter. And, unfortunately, it was his fault.

At Samís question, Johnny moaned and weaved. Sam quickly provided him with the chamber pot again. When Johnny was finished, there was nothing but complete silence, with yet again building tension. Finally, Scott squeezed Johnnyís shoulder and looked up at his father. I think we should let Johnny rest for a few minutes, while I speak to you gentlemen in private. Murdoch, who had been looking for a reprieve so he could figure out just what he would do about the situation, agreed. Scott, having spied the card that he had written for Johnny and had Becky tie around her neck, reached down and picked it up off of the floor as he followed Sam and led his father out of the room. Murdoch, naturally, had to turn and look back at his young son, still sitting on the bed and said, "John, this is not over by a long shot. I will deal with you later."

Johnny, whose adrenaline rush had left him completely devoid of energy or feeling, turned and curled up on his bed in a fetal position, pulling a blanket over himself after the door closed.


Downstairs in the great room, Sam walked directly to the bar, picked up the whiskey bottle and poured three double shots. Handing one to Scott and one to Murdoch, he took his own and sat in a chair by the fireplace. With his drink, he waved the two to sit down.

"Now Murdoch, I want you to please try and remain calm and tell me exactly what has transpired here. I am one, of if not your oldest, friend and will maintain your confidence as well as that of Johnís and Scottís naturally. But I have never seen pain in a personís eyes like I just saw upstairs. Believe me, I have seen pain, a lot of pain, but nothing like that."

"Well, Sam, this entire thing is my fault, "Scott began, only to be interrupted by Murdoch. "Scott, I really wish you would quit trying to take up for your brother in this matter. There is no way in hell that your brother screwing two whores in our bathtub can possibly be your fault. I guess I just have to face facts, he just has a great character flaw that canít be overlooked. I really thought that we had gotten past a lot of issues and were beginning to make some headway, but now, I see that was just my wishful thinking."

"Murdoch, really, now letís be realistic here," Sam began. "Aside from the unfortunate fact that Teresa was witness to this, this, scene, is it really worth destroying your relationship with that boy? I mean he really is still a boy by age and in some ways mentally."

"Sam, I am a Christian man. I do not solicit whores in saloons or brothels and I will be damned if I will host them in my home! I understand my sons have needs, and being Mariaís child, well, I understand Johnny probably has an excess of need, but there is a big difference in going to a saloon or brothel and meeting these needs with discretion, but to bring those women into my, our home?! With a young girl like Teresa on the premises?!" There is just absolutely NO EXCUSE! I WILL NOT TOLERATE THIS! It is out and out born of DISRESPECT AND DEFIANCE!" He slammed his fist down on his desk.

"Murdoch, now calm down. Weíve had this discussion before about Johnnyís upbringing and how it has affected him, and how you cannot assume that he has the same morals or understanding of social behavior as we know it. . . . . "

"Oh COME ON SAM, you know as well as I do, that even Johnny, for all his lacking in the social graces knows better than to do something like this! I just donít understand WHY, when things seemed to be going so well!"

Scott, after taking many long tugs on his whiskey, found a place to intercede. "Perhaps there is another explanation for my brotherís behavior." He suggested quietly.

"And what would your opinion be Scott, you know Johnny probably better than any of us." Sam asked.

"This." He handed Murdoch the card. Murdoch read it and glared at Scott.

"Surely not Scott. Surely you did not arrange for this disgusting scenario!"

Sam, curious, leaned over and snatched the note from Murdochís hand.

"Yes sir, I did. I didnít see the harm in it."

"DIDNíT SEE THE HARM? You are joking arenít you? If you for any reason think that this is acceptable behavior, you are MORE DEPRAVED than your gunfighter brother." Murdoch was getting wound up again.

"Murdoch!" Both Scott and Sam objected to Murdochís description of Johnny.

"Sir, I will not have you speak of my brother in this way. I know you are angry and have every right to be. However, your anger is misplaced. You should be angry at me, not Johnny." 1

"Scott, donít tell me who to be angry with. You may have set this up, but he could have sent them packing first thing."

"For Godís sake Murdoch, neither you or Teresa was supposed to be here. This is just a big misunderstanding!"

"MISUNDERSTANDING? Scott, you have got to be kidding me. How can I ever leave this ranch without wondering what else will take place by leaving either of you or the both of you alone here? Much less, leave Teresa alone with either of you."

"Sir, you cannot imagine how sick I am that I have probably destroyed all the progress that you and Johnny have made in your relationship. In case you did not hear him during your ranting upstairs, he is prepared to leave or be thrown out. I will not stand for that when I am the responsible party."

"Murdoch, now surely you are not so stupid as to lose your son over something that frankly is as ridiculous as this?" Sam interrupted, fear creeping into his soul that Johnny would indeed either be banished or banish himself.

"Sam it is not stupid. But you are right. I donít want to lose my son over two whores."

"Murdoch, could you please use another word, whores are people too, they are all someoneís daughter. They suffer more than you think." Sam asked. Murdoch gave him a murderous glare.

During the conversation, Murdoch had finished his drink and Scott had poured him another double, which had now been mostly imbibed, mellowing the man a bit. "So Scott, do you have a mind to tell me what the hell possessed you to do something like this?" Murdoch asked.

"Yes sir. Itís simple. Johnny has been working hard to comply with all the restrictions you have put on him since the saloon fight, which by the way, he did not start, and it seemed that he was really making headway in his relationship with you." Murdoch started to interrupt, but Scott held up his hand and continued, "HOWEVER, I noticed that in the last week, he has been getting that trapped look. You know what Iím talking about. He just seemed restless like he wanted to bolt, and I could tell that he was doing his best not too. Murdoch, he really loves you and he has overcome unbelievable odds and heartache to try and please you. Bolting is one way that he releases the pressure and tension of this environment for him. Another way, well, is going to town to be with the girls. I had the feeling that he was fighting with himself over taking the risk of going to town for a night while you were gone. I just thought that he was doing so well, that if he had a little reward, the temptation would be thwarted and you would return pleased and he would still be here, with a renewed sense of purpose. Clearly, the best laid plans have gone awry."

Murdoch sighed. "Damn. I just donít know what to do about this. Scott, you understand how disappointed I am in BOTH of you. In a way, I am more disappointed in you than in Johnny. I mean, I know he canít help the way he was raised, and being raised in that environment, I guess he wouldnít think that much about something like this, but you Scott. . . . . you. . ."

"I completely understand sir, and I apologize. I will not attempt such a feat again, and I donít think I would be out of line speaking for Johnny when I say I donít think he will either. I will accept whatever consequences you choose for me, but I beg you not to punish Johnny for my actions and for doing what frankly, I think even you might consider similar action when presented with the same set of circumstances."

Almost taking issue with the last statement, Murdoch chose to ignore it, admitting to himself that most young men, even he, probably would have done the same as Johnny.

"Very well Scott, weíll talk after breakfast about what your additional responsibilities for the next month will be."

"Absolutely sir. Now, if I may excuse myself, I would like to check on Johnny and might I simply suggest that you give him some reassurance yourself later?"

"I will son. I will."

"Sam." Scott nodded and went upstairs with his drink.

After Scottís leave, Sam turned to Murdoch and said, "You know Murdoch, one day, weíll all look back and laugh about this."

"I know Sam, I know, but not tonight."

Scott walked into Johnnyís room and found him still curled up on his bed, staring at the window. Sitting down, he placed his hand on Johnnyís side and said, "Relax little brother, itís all taken care of. Murdoch is not mad at you anymore."

Johnny turned his sad blue eyes onto Scott and asked, "Really?"

"Really, Johnny. He loves you just like I do. His anger is now directed at me, and I am prepared to handle whatever punishment he assigns me."

"Thanks for sticking up for me. I wasnít gonna tell him you hired them." Johnny sat up and took the glass of whiskey Scott handed him.

"It was only fair. I caused this nightmare, just trying to make sure that you were happy and had ALL of your needs met." He patted Johnnyís knee.

"Well big brother, I will say this. You really know how to meet a manís needs. Damn that was fun." He smiled looking down at the bed, and the added, "Well, until, you know."

"I know."

"What are we gonna do about Teresa."

"I donít know. She needs to grow up and get over it. Murdoch too, for that matter. Itís nothing that a little time wonít heal."

I guess youíre right as always big brother. . . . . I know one day, weíll probably look back on this and laugh, but damn, this just ainít a laughiní matter tonight. Not at all."  

"Nope little brother, not tonight."









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