Something I like to think I did well in the issue was giving the Cooke Brothers distinctive styles. I don't want any character to be interchangeable, if I can help it, so I figured I'd give each of them some verbal mannerisms to help distinguish them. I use that kind of thing again, to... eh, mixed results, in the next issue, but that's neither here nor there.
Hope you like West #2!
Poorer Than You Came, Part 2
by Gordon Graham
Panel 1: Dawn. we see a southward facing vista down out of some hills, with a dirt path winding off towards the barely visible pile of buildings that is Boneshade.
Obediah (Tailess, off panel): I told you, Zeb.
Zeb (Tailless, off panel): Ahm not particularly inclined to converse on that subject, Obediah.
Obediah (T, OP): I think we should.
Zeb (T, OP): Y’know what yer conundrum is, Obie? yer never happy. Since the day you entered this world, you aint spent a day of it in contentment.
Obediah (T, OP): Why should I be?
Panel 2: panel pulls back through the farmhouse window, grimy and cracked, showing a little bit of blood spatter on the wall next to it.
Zeb (OP): Ah finally shut up that retard farmer like you wanted.
Obediah (OP): should have done it sooner.
Zeb (OP): We got that delectable sack o’ cash waitin’ for us in town.
Obediah (OP): Cooke should have got back with it by now.
Zeb (OP): Alright, fine. But how’s this fer a piece o’ euphoria?
Panel 3: camera pulls back further still to show the main room, with Zeb and Obie Smith inside. Obie is leaning against one wall with a squinting, pissed expression, while Zeb sits atop some boxes, cleaning his knife and smirking. The extent of the blood on the wall is near sickening - a man doesn’t lose that much blood and then leave in anything other than a pine box.
Zeb: We’ll certainly have ta do some killin’ ta git that legal tender now.
Panel 4: Closeup on Obie, wearing his scowl.
Panel 5: his face shifts very slightly into something that could almost be called a smile.
Obie: ...when does Jeb get back?
Zeb (OP): Couple minutes. An’ however badly ol’ Cooke screwed up...
Panel 1: The jail, focusing on the cell next the Cooke’s. Kearn is inside, clutching at the bars. Frank is in the process of locking the door, and Stacy is just about nose to nose with Kearn, waving the newspaper page around. Note: Frank isn’t wearing his hat or his gunbelt.
Caption (Zeb): ...This “Kearn” city slicker ain’t got a notion of how much trouble he’s called down.
Kearn: I - Buh - What is the meaning of this? Stacy - Sheriff -
Stacy: You shut the HELL up, you lyin’ sack of manure!
Frank: Stacy, you should calm -
Panel 2: Stacy shoves the newspaper page in Kearn’s face. She is spitting mad, and for good reason - the page reads “BANKER VANISHES UNDER SUSPICION OF FRAUD!” along with a clear picture of a slightly fatter Kearn. the real Kearn is shocked and horrified.
Stacy: THIS! LOOK at this, you son of a BITCH!
Stacy: STOLE from the bank, ain’t WORKED for them in EIGHT MONTHS...
Stacy: And there ain’t so much as a CONFEDERATE DIME in that rucksack!
Kearn: I - I can explain!
Panel 3: Stacy lunges at the bars, groping out to seize at Kearn, who shrinks away to huddle at the far Wall.
Stacy: I DON’T WANT YOU TO EXPLAIN! I WANT YOU TO DIE, YOU WORTHLESS PIG!
Frank: Whoa, Stacy, girl! Back off!
Panel 4: Frank tries to pull Stacy away from the bars, and looks desperately to Chuck for help.
Frank: Chuck - she’s YOUR daughter! Call her off! lend a hand or somthin’!
Chuck: What for? Think she’s got th’ right of it.
Panel 5: Frank succeeds in pulling her away, and he wheels on him, suddenly mournful.
Stacy: He- he swindled us, Frank! he was suckin’ Boneshade dry, fer NOTHING!
Stacy: Money an’ trade that weren’t ever gonna come!
Frank: I know, Stacy, I know. An’ he’ll pay fer it in due course.
Frank: But right now, we’ve got the Smith brothers to deal with any minute, an’ I don’t have time to keep you from killin’ Kearn.
Panel 6: Stacy pulls away from Frank, disgusted, though if its with him, Kearn, or herself is anyone’s guess.
Stacy: I’ll leave him alone.