A FINAL FAREWELL
BY GAGE39

I claim all of the usual legal disclaimers.  This story was written for my enjoyment and is my first one.

            Texas Ranger Francis Gage came down the stairs at a gallop buckling his gun belt with both hands and nearly tripped over a toy truck that his son Grant had left out the night before.  He stopped in the kitchen long enough to grab a bagel out of his oldest son's, Christopher, hand, said "I love you," and raced out the door.  He was always late to work but his alarm clock (his wife) had already been up and out when he woke up and then he couldn't find his shoes because Gracie (oldest daughter) had hid them for some unknown reason.  Sydney was already waiting in the car and as soon as he was buckled in she put her foot on the pedal and drove off.  Their children would be watched by a neighbor while they worked.

A few hours later Gage and Sydney were going out to lunch when they decided to stop by the bank and withdraw some money.  The two entered the bank and were waiting in line when four men entered, shooting.

Sydney shot one man and he fell down dead and Gage shot two others.  The last one standing on his feet fired and hit Sydney in the chest.  A bright red stain appeared on her shirt and Gage shouted, "Syd!"

 He shot the remaining man and he fell down dead.  Gage then caught Sydney in his arms as she fell to the floor.

"Syd!" he cried.

"Gage, I love you and the kids," she murmured and then her black eyes closed one last time.  One of the wounded men raised his weapon and shot Gage in the head.  Gage slumped over the body of his dead wife.  The two had died at the same time, never to be parted.

Ranger Cordell Walker and his partner James Trivette were out driving in Walker's RAM when they received word of shooting going on at a bank.  The two went to check it out and Walker's heart nearly stopped beating when he caught sight of Gage and Sydney's red Lincoln Town car.  Trivette glanced over at him and Walker could see the alarm in the black man's eyes.

The two men entered the bank and the first thing they saw were two protective plastic sheets covering something on the floor.

"Hello, Ranger Walker.  Would you like to see the victims?" Detective Mike Burton asked.  Walker nodded and Detective Burton pulled back the plastic revealing Gage and Sydney's dead bodies.

Both of them had their eyes closed.  Sydney had been shot in the chest and Gage in the head.  They had died instantly.

As soon as Alex Cahill-Walker and Erika Trivette heard the news they rushed over to the house where the kids were staying.  Walker and Trivette went as well and helped break the news to the six children.  Christopher, Gracie, Grant, Louise, C. D., and Sydney Rose.  Sydney was only six months old and Gage had wanted to name her after her mother.

            The funeral was a sad, solemn affair.  Walker carried one of the folded flags and gave it to Christopher.  Trivette gave the one to Gracie.  Everyone in attendance was in tears.  Alex could hardly keep from breaking out in choking sobs as she held Sydney Rose.

            After the funeral the will was read.  Gage and Sydney had left their children to Walker and Alex first and Trivette and Erika next.  The rest of the property and everything was to divided among the children first and everyone else last.  Walker and Trivette, however, were to receive Gage's journals outright.

Years passed.  Christopher married Alexis, Walker and Alex's second daughter.  During the ceremony Walker could have sworn he saw Gage and Sydney mingling with the guests and heard them laughing.  That's when he realized that they had died only in body.  Their spirits lived on in their children and in the earth.

 He raised a glass and whispered, "The two of you did a good job," and drank the contents.  It was a happy occasion after all.