Marston vs Jericho .png

The West is filled with a lot of stories. Many of these stories don't even enter the History books. Some stories are too boring to write down. Others, however, are too scary, or unbelievable, to be written.

One common story is about the creatures of the night, who prowl the lands, seeking victims to dine upon. These creatures go by many names - ghouls, ghosts, vampires and zombies. In each story, these creatures claim the lives of innocent people, and add them to their numbers.

However, in many of these stories, there are tales of those who take up arms against the creatures, some of whom were even affected, and turned into the very creatures they fight, trying to maintain their hold on their Humanity.

One of two such men include John Marston, an outlaw-turned-bounty hunter, who fought zombies in an attempt to save his family, and even became one after his death, but with his soul intact, thus, allowing him to save those caught between the living and the dead. The other is Jericho Cross, an outlaw who becomes a vampire hunter after a botched train robbery turns him into a bloodsucker, and is all but forced to join the DarkWatch society in an attempt to regain his humanity, unless he decides to give into his bloodlust.

These two have taken on impossible odds before, and won. However, what will happen when these undead cowboys turn their weapons on each other?

It's a duel to the death to determine Who is Deadliest?

John Marston (Undead Nightmare)

John Marston (Undead Nightmare)

(As the title indicates, this is for the DLC addition to Red Dead Redemption, Undead Nightmare, specifically, the zombie version of John Marston, though I will use information about the Regular version, whom the Zombie version is based off of.)

John Marston spent many years in the company of a gang, trying to bring about change in society, until the leader, Dutch, went off the deep end. After a certain incident, John decided to go straight, leaving the gang with his wife a young son, to become a rancher. However, in 1911, Government Agents abduct John's wife and son, forcing him to hunt down the former members of his old gang. After many adventures, including participating in a Mexican Revolution, John had either killed or captured the former members of said gang, including his old leader, and was allowed to return home. However, he is betrayed, and is killed, after seeing to it that his wife and son managed to escape.

In the Undead Nightmare DLC, a zombie apocalypse occurs, with John's Wife and Son getting infected. After tying his family up, John sets out to find a cure, saving many towns along the way, until he finds out that one of his past associates had recovered an ancient Aztec mask, which had unleashed the curse. John then returns the mask to its rightful location, and returns home, finding his family cured.

Some months later, after John's death, a friend of John's stole the mask once more, unleashing the curse, waking the dead once more, including John, who, thankfully, was buried with a bottle of Holy Water, which allows his mind and soul to remain intact. Undead John then sets out to undo the curse once more.

John's Weapons

John fought outlaws, the military, animals, the undead, and undead animals with the following weapons -

Melee: Torch - A short stick with a flammable rag, used for burning things, like the undead, and coffins. Roughly two feet in length. Causes both Blunt and Fire Damage.

Secondary Melee: Buttstroke/Pistol Whip - Melee attack done with the butt of a firearm. Known for causing fractures. Blunt Damage.

Primary Handgun: Mauser Pistol - Automatic pistol. Holds 15 rounds.

Secondary Handgun: LeMat Revolver - Revolver. Holds 9 rounds.

Rifle: Evans Repeater - Lever-action rifle. Holds 22 rounds.

Sniper: Carcano Rifle - Bolt-Action rifle - holds 5 Rounds

Shotgun: Pump-Action Shotgun - Pump action - holds 6 rounds

Thrown 1: Boom Bait - A bottle with a strange liquid inside, plus a stick of dynamite. After being thrown, the bottle will break, and the liquid will attract the Undead. A few seconds later, the dynamite blows up, killing/injuring those caught in the blast.

Thrown 2: Fire Bottle - A bottle containing a flammable liquid - like petrol or high grade alcohol - and a lit rag to cause contents to burst into fire once the glass bottle breaks.

Special Weapon 1: Blunderbuss - Black-powder muzzle-loader weapon, which destroys most Undead. Single Shot. Can be loaded with anything, especially parts of the undead - ribs, teeth, eyes, tongue, ears - to be used as ammo.

Special Weapon 2: Explosive Rifle - Single Shot. Destroys most anything in one shot.

Eye-Power: Dead Eye - Time temporarily slows down for John, allowing him to make careful, and accurate, shots.

Jericho Cross (DarkWatch)

Jericho Cross (Darkwatch)

Jericho Cross is a man with a checkered past. At one point, he was a soldier in the American Civil War, on the side of the Union, only to desert for reasons known to himself. One story is that he murdered his slave-owning father, another is that he witnessed those around him committing violent atrocities. He would later become an Outlaw, robbing trains along the Mexican Border, committing murder and other crimes. That is, until his last train, which, instead of having gold, had the granddaddy of all vampires, Lazarus Malkoth, which bit him, causing Jericho to gain vampiric abilities. He was practically forced to join forces with Darkwatch Regulator, Agent Cassidy Sharp, in order to deliver the news about the vampire's release. Along the way, he begins using his abilities, which aid him in combat with the Undead creatures, which attack with a variety of weapons, from blades, strange firearms, brute force, and even supernatural abilities. When Cassidy is murdered by the vampire that sired him, Jericho is given the task to alert Headquarters, the Darkwatch Citadel with Cassidy's spirit guiding and advising/criticizing him. After being put through a life-or-death test by Brigadier General Clay Cartwright, an American Civil War veteran himself - turned - Vampire Hunter, Jericho joins Darkwatch, going with agents on various missions. One such agent, a woman named Tala, has her own plans for power. After one battle with the undead, which had cost the lives of several Innocents, some having been killed by Tala's Regulators, Tala has sex with Jericho, and tricks him into turning her into something like him. Tala then outright betrays the Darkwatch, and lets Lazarus' forces into the Citadel. Jericho and the surviving agents escape, only for Jericho to have to face off against an empowered Lazarus. Afterwards, Jericho makes a choice: Cleanse the West of the Curse (Good), or become the next Vampire King (Evil), joining with either Cassidy or Tala. Afterwards, Jericho faces the consequence of his final choice. If he picked the Good Path, Jericho fights the traitor Tala, and defeats her, his Humanity is restored, and Cassidy goes to Heaven, while Jericho goes to fight more Evil. If he picked the Evil Path, Jericho fights Cassidy, and defeats her, then, betrays Tala, draining her dry, throws of his Darkwatch badge, and rides off, to spread more evil.

Jericho's Weapons

Jericho uses the following weapons to exterminate the Undead, and/or kill angry Regulators and Innocents (Note- caliber/gauge is likely to be similar to conventional firearms, with the bullets being made of a certain material used to bring down the Undead, such as Blessed Silver) -

Melee: Darkwatch Scepter - Ornate 3-foot long iron cross-like mace. Causes Blunt force trauma. Tends to destroy most foes in one to three hits.

Secondary Melee: Buttstroke/Pistol Whip - Each of the firearms utilized by Jericho and Darkwatch Regulators is equipped with a silver-lined ax-like blade of some sort, or, in the case of the Rail Rocket, some sort of sledgehammer, to be used if the weapon is out of ammo, unable to fire, or if the enemy is too close for comfort.

Primary Handgun: Redeemer Revolver - Revolver-like handgun that, when fanned, fires in an automatic-like mood. Holds 24 rounds.

Secondary Handgun: Warmonger Pistol - revolver-like handgun, usually used in pairs. Holds 12 rounds (each).

Rifle: Blackfish Carbine - lever-action-like rifle, repeater-type. Holds 12 rounds

Sniper: Carson Range Rifle - Semi-auto-like action. Holds 4 rounds

Shotgun: Argus Shotgun- Special 4-barrel shotgun. After firing, a slide is pulled, allowing the barrel to rotate, and thus get a fresh round. Holds 16 Rounds

Thrown 1: Splitter Grenade - These grenade-like devices will split into three parts, each causing an explosion, which will harm any enemy caught nearby, even more to those caught between two or more parts.

Thrown 2: Dynamite - While regular dynamite is good for causing explosions, Drakwatch Society modified Nobel's design to make the compound to be more stable for trips on horseback, therefore making it more useful for combat, especially to deny the enemy cover.

Special Weapon 1: Crossbow - This is a Repeating-type of crossbow, loaded with explosive bolts. After a bolt is fired, it will explode within 2-3 seconds, meaning that the bolt doesn't need to hit the target to hurt it, as long as the foe is close to it - along with a number of its friends. Holds 12 bolts.

Special Weapon 2: Rail Rocket - Functions similar to a rocket launcher, used, almost exclusively, on important Structures, like the Marks of Evil, which control the undead, or really tough enemies. And if the rocket rounds don't fo the job, the thing uses a sledgehammer for it's melee attack. Holds 3 rounds.

Eye Power: Blood Vision - Due to being bitten by Lazarus, Jericho's once injured eye has become a glowing red orb, which allows him to see hidden enemies, in fog or smoke, or just plain hiding, as well as other critical items - like weapons and doors. It also allows him to see enemies at a distance, allowing Jericho to aim his weapons more effectively.

X-Factors' Chart

John Marston (Undead Nightmare) Versus Jericho Cross (Darkwatch) X-Factors
X-Factor John Marston (Undead Nightmare) Jericho Cross (Darkwatch)
Killer Instinct 85 90
Combat Experience 85 80
Physical Strength 75 90
Agility 75 90
Endurance 90 80
Melee Combat 80 85
Range Combat 80 85
Overall 81.428571 85.714286

Explanations for X-Factors

Here are my reasonings behind the X-Factors 

1. Killer Instinct - This is difficult. John Marston tries to save most of the people he comes across, only putting them down if necessary. Jericho Cross on the other hand, kills because he has to, and because sometimes, death is a kinder fate than the alternative. Edge - Jericho Cross

2. Combat Experience - This in another difficult one. John Marston has fought Outlaws, Rebels, the Mexican Army, the American Army, the proto-FBI, wild animals, to say nothing about zombies and zombie animals. Jericho Cross has (presumably) killed many people during his various robberies. He has also fought the undead, many of which were somewhat intelligent, eventually fighting the one who sired him, and then later, either a demon-like Tala (Good Path), or an angel-like Cassidy (Evil Path). Slight edge - John Marston

3. Physical Strength - John, being a zombie, is going to have limitations on how strong he can get. Jericho, on the other hand, is extremely strong, being capable of destroying foes within a few blows. Major edge - Jericho Cross

4. Agility - John's a fairly good runner, but he has issues traversing certain terrains, like steep cliffs. Jericho, on the other hand, can leap like a pronghorn, clearing 20 to 30 feet in a single jump, allowing him to clear cliffs, buildings, bypass rivers, and anything that would trouble someone on foot normally. Edge - Jericho.

5. Endurance - Both of these guys are very tough. However, while John Marston is good to go, Day or Night, Jericho Cross weakens to normal Human levels when the sun rises, which can prove to be dangerous when fighting large numbers of tough undead creatures, especially if there is nothing to create shadows for him to recover his energy in. Edge - John

6. Melee Combat - Both of these fighters are good when it comes to close-quarters fighting, with John having something of a reputation for doing so. However, Jericho's weapons are crafted with blades in them, making melee fighting much easier. Edge - Jericho

7. Range Combat - Both of these fighters are expert marksmen, with John having a reputation for shooting moving targets, taking the hats off of people, and even disarming them, to say nothing about saving people, like Bonnie MacFarlane, from being hung, along with other life-saving shots. Jericho, on the other hand, only had one eye, initially, and proved himself to be an excellent shot, even before his left eye was healed by his newly acquired vampire blood, which gave him the ability to see what a vampire saw - also, the weapons he uses were made for dispatching the undead, including the silver ammunition. Edge - Jericho.

8. Overall - This will be a close fight - John has edges in Combat Experience and Endurance, and, theoretically, should the battle last past dawn, John could win, but Jericho has edges in most everything else, especially Physical Strength and Agility, and, should the fight occur well before sunrise, Jericho has a good chance of winning.

Other Factors

  1. Jericho, being a vampire-type creature, weakens to the point of being a normal human when exposed to direct sunlight, loosing all of his vampire abilities - sight, agility, and strength. That being said, Jericho is still an excellent shot, his weapons are made for slaying the undead, Day or Night, and, in a pinch, he can use the shadows of tall trees, large rocks, caves, and abandoned buildings to allow him to use his vampire powers in the daylight.
  2. Jericho is capable of summoning Shadow, a demonic horse whom Jericho had infected when in the beginning throws of the Curse - this horse is fast, tireless, and powerful. The pair share a bond with each other, meaning that Shadow will do whatever Jericho wants him to do.
  3. John Marston, being a member of the undead, is usually ignored by them, until he makes a move they consider aggressive, like being too close to them, shooting them, having a torch out near them, or trying to rescue their targeted pray.
  4. John Marston is weak when it comes to damage from explosives, but can survive falling from greater heights than a living human. He'll also have an undead horse for a mount - very fast, tireless, and highly resistant to damage.

Terms of the battle

After hearing about an independent-minded undead gunslinger (John Marston), who doesn't serve the forces of Lazarus, Darkwatch sends Jericho Cross with orders to capture John, in an attempt to recruit the undead bounty hunter, or kill him is this proves impossible. However, John Marston, having had enough of following other people's orders, must convince Jericho to leave him be, or kill him if necessary.

The battle will start, roughly, an hour before dawn, with Jericho having found John by a campfire.

Voting Terms

Five Sentences are needed, preferably with good spelling and grammar, or weapon's edges, with good reasons behind the statements for a vote to qualify.

Voting goes until October 16.

The Battle

Jericho walked down the halls of the Citadel. It had been recently constructed by Darkwatch Regulators and their Native American allies, after the old one had been destroyed by Lazarus’s forces, and after Tala’s treachery. Jericho clenched his hands at this, hard enough to draw blood, at which point, he relaxed, and let his body heal itself. He looked at his hand, and saw the cuts vanish, as if they were never there. His new powers both fascinated, and worried, him.

“It will be alright,” came Cassidy’s voice, inside of his head. “We’ll make Tala pay for what she did.”

Jericho frowned. If he hadn’t been tempted by that woman, maybe the mess she’d made could have been avoided. Still, she had seduced him, purposefully cut herself, triggering his feeding response, and turned her in the process. Now she was out there, slaughtering humans left and right, or turning them, and it was up to him to stop her. He stopped before a door, and knocked, carefully.

“Come in.”

Jericho opened the door, and saw Brigadier General Clay Cartwright looking over a series of maps.

“I’ve been waiting for you, half-breed,” the man said, in a manner that was far from nice. “What took you so long?”

Jericho took out a canteen, and placed it on the table, some blood trying to seep out of the seal.

“That better be horse blood,” said Cartwright.

“It is,” said Jericho, with a slight growl. “I know better than to intentionally piss you off, not that I don’t anyways.”

Cartwright scoffed at this. “Yes, because you cost me some of my best agents.”

Jericho growled at this, his lips exposing his fangs.

“Don’t you dare growl at me,” said Cartwright. “If it weren’t for you, Lazarus would still be stuck in that vault, and my agents would still be alive.”

“Then why do you want me here now?” Jericho asked.

“Our scouts have located a potential, and promising, recruit,” said Cartwright. “It’s your job to bring him here, by force if need be. Here’s what he looked like ten years ago.”

The man got out a poster, and placed it on the desk. Jericho looked at it.

“So, you want another criminal in the ranks?” Jericho asked.

“Former Criminal,” Cartwright corrected. “This John Marston once rode with a gang, robbing various banks and the like all across Texas and Mexico, until he was wounded in a botched job. He retired, settled down, tried to raise a family, until a Mr. Edger Ross and his Bureau of Investigation arrested him and his family on trumped-up charges, and forced him to hunt down his old gang members. After that, there was an outbreak of zombies, but he managed to deal with them, and put an end to it. After that, Mr. Ross had him killed.”

“So, how do you expect me to recruit a dead man?” Jericho asked. “Do you propose that I dig him up, and swear him in?”

“You won’t have to dig him up,” said Cartwright. “He’s been resurrected, as a Gunslinger/Rifleman hybrid, or something. Also, unlike most of the other undead out there, he’s not under the control of Lazarus. Here’s what he looks like now, according to witnesses.”

“I see,” Jericho said, as he looked at a drawing that Cartwright got out. “Ugly looking bastard.”

“You’re no vision of beauty yourself,” said Cartwright. “Now, the train will take you to a place called Armadillo. Talk to the Marshal, Leigh Johnson. He ought to have an idea on where you can find this Marston.”

Jericho nodded. “I’ll get on it.” With that, he left the office.

“And make damn sure you bring him back in one piece!” Cartwright said through the door.

Meanwhile, in Armadillo, a horse, carrying two riders, gallops into town, before stopping in front of the Marshal’s office. The door opens, and out steps an older-looking man, wearing a badge, and carrying a revolver. Looking around, he turned and gestured to someone in the office. “All clear, and she’s safe and sound.”

At this, a woman rushed out of the office, along with another man, who was carrying a shotgun. The man stopped, and looked at the figure holding onto the reins of the horse. “Marshal, what’s this demon doing here?”

“Relax Tillman,” said Marshal Johnson. “Marston’s different from the others. Don’t ask me why though.”

Marston grunted, as he held the reins of his horse, which looked like it should be dead, and indeed it was.

Marshal Johnson walked up to the horse, and helped the young woman off. “You’re safe now.”

The woman looked at the being that had brought her into town. “Um, thanks. Uh, may God watch over you.” She then got to her family, and they then took off down the street, and got inside a house.

The Marshal looked at Marston. “Come into my office. I need to talk to you about something.”

Marston got off his horse, tied the reins to a hitching post, and followed the lawman.

“Feel free to stock up on ammunition,” the Marshal said, as he indicated his weapons rack. “You’re going to need it.”

Marston walked over, and began picking up boxes of ammunition.

“I need you to listen carefully,” said Johnson. “I’ve been getting reports about new creatures showing up. These things aren’t like the ones you’ve been fighting. These things are intelligent, and use weapons, just like you, but they are not friendly, and are highly dangerous.”

Marston growled. The creatures were indeed changing. He needed to find the mask that Seth had stolen.

“There’s more,” Johnson continued. “There’s a group out there, called Darkwatch, that claims to have been fighting these things for some time. They claim that these creatures work for some vampire called Lazarus, or something like that. These folks aren’t very friendly either; they didn’t like it when I told them to stop messing around with our new storekeeper, and were about to draw on me, when the storekeeper mentioned that you’d hunt them down and kill them if they killed me. They laughed at this, until the storekeeper said that you were some sort of demon that couldn’t be killed. That got their attention, and they asked about you. They asked me about where to find you. I told them I wouldn’t say, and that they’d best leave. They left afterwards, but promised they’d be back to find you. They said you’d make an interesting recruit.”

Marston growled once more. He hated people that pushed others around, as he’d been pushed around.

“In short, be careful out there Marston,” Johnson finished. “It’s not just the dead you have to worry about now; it’s guys that dress in black clothes with red handkerchiefs on their faces, and they have some interesting looking weapons. So watch out.”

Marston grunted, left the Marshal’s office, loaded his saddlebag, got on his horse, and rode out of town. Eventually, he located a place to watch the moon and the stars. He then checked on his weapons – a Torch, good for burning the bodies of the dead, Mauser pistol, which held 15 shots, LeMat revolver, which held 9 rounds, Evans Repeater rifle, which held 22 rounds, a Carcano rifle, which held 5 rounds, and was very accurate, a pump-action shotgun, which had six shots, Boom Bait, which lured the undead to a certain spot before blowing up, Fire Bottles, which contained flammable liquid, a Blunderbuss, which could use most anything for ammo, especially parts of the dead, and an Explosive Rifle, which was very powerful. Then again, he could always use the butt ends of his firearms to knock some sense into people’s heads if need be. He looked at his horse – despite looking like it had been eaten by a bear, and it probably had been, it could run all day, and night, never got tired, and was highly resilient to damage. He looked around, and saw that none of the dead were nearby, so he decided to think about things, like his son, Jack, and his wife, Abigail. He prayed that the pair were okay.

A while later, Jericho’s train was nearing Armadillo. The half-vampire looked over his weapons – Darkwatch Scepter, a metal club-like weapon, Redeemer Revolver, which held 24 rounds in its cylinders, Duel Warmonger Pistols, each of which held 12 rounds, Blackfish Rifle, which worked like a civilian Winchester Rifle, and held 12 rounds, Carson Range Rifle, which had a fairly powerful scope, and held 4 rounds, Argus Shotgun, a special 4 barrel firearm that held 16 rounds, Splitter Grenades, which split in to several parts to give a nice explosion, Dynamite, which was self-explanatory, but better than the original, Crossbow, which held 12 explosive bolts, and a Rail Rocket, which held 3 rounds that could really do some damage. Of course, if worse came to worse, each of the firearms, including the crossbow, had a nice blade on them for close in work, and the Rail Rocket had a sledgehammer attached to it. Jericho then checked on his horse – the creature shared the same blood as him, and was bonded to him. It could outrun most anything.

Jericho walked to the door, and opened it a bit, to look outside. He looked at the moon. He had a few hours until sunrise. If he could locate his quarry within that time, he’d have no issues beating him in a fight. Eventually, the train came to a stop. Leading his horse, he walked to the Marshal’s office, everyone giving him a wide space, as if they sensed a certain element of danger around him, if nothing else. It could have been the black outfit, or the badge he wore, or the redness behind his eyepatch, or maybe just natural caution, given what was going on; no one bothered him. He stepped inside, and saw the Marshal.

The lawman looked at him, moved his eyes slightly, and looked at him once more. “Jericho Cross, Wanted for Train Robbery and Mayhem along the Arizona Border. Thought you got killed during a bad train robbery, where the train got wrecked beyond control, with everyone on board dead.”

“Reports of my death were, slightly, exaggerated,” Jericho said, as he turned his head, and saw the poster of him on the Notice board. It wasn’t a bad likeness, of how he used to look. He looked at the rest of the posters. His quarry wasn’t among them. “Do you know of a John Marston? Former outlaw, part-time bounty hunter, currently dead, yet still among the living?”

He heard some movement, and a click. “I want you to get the hell out of my town,” the Marshal said.

Jericho turned his head back towards the lawman, and grinned, causing the old man’s face to become pale. “I hope you’re a good shot, for I don’t die that easily anymore.”

“So, it is true,” the lawman said. “You are a demon.”

“It’s complicated,” Jericho said. “John Marston? Where is he?”

The Marshal holstered his revolver. “I’ve been informed he tends to set up camp near Jorge’s Gap. You can’t miss it, just follow the railroad southwest, and you’ll find it.”

Jericho nodded, and stepped outside, where he heard a scream.

“Jericho!” Cassidy shouted inside of his head.

The vampire-outlaw looked down the street, and growled. Several undead Gunslingers were harassing a woman, who was trying to scramble up onto the roof of a store.

“Hey! Bother someone who can fight back!”

The Gunslingers turned, and looked at him. One gave a growl, and it and the others got out into the street, facing him. Jericho watched the creatures, their hands were close to their revolvers. One went for theirs, but Jericho was faster on the draw, quicker on the firing, and more accurate. All of them went down. Jericho reloaded his gun, and saw the Marshal standing at the doorway, a rifle in his hand. Jericho got on his horse.

“I’d best be on my way,” Jericho said. “Be sure to burn them.” He then set off.

At roughly an hour before dawn, Jericho saw what he was looking for; a man who looked like he was dead, by a horse that looked like it was dead, and yet seemed to be alive. Of course, it wasn’t unusual to see other seemingly dead men, or horses, or see them together, but save for the fact that there was no fire, it seemed like he was camping. Then, the figure looked up, got to its feet, and pulled an Evans Repeater rifle off of the horse.

“John Marston?”

The creature nodded.

“I’m Jericho Cross, and I’ve got orders to take you to Darkwatch.”

Marston growled, lifted his rifle, and fired, knocking Jericho off of his horse. Marston got on his horse, and galloped off.

Jericho stood up, and checked the wound. It was healing up already.

“I think that’s his way of saying No,” said Cassidy.

“Very funny,” said Jericho. He then got on his Horse, drew his Redeemer revolver, and set off in pursuit.

By this time, Marston had holstered his Evans, and got out his Mauser pistol. He then turned, and fired at the one pursuing him.

Jericho dodged the bullets, by leaning to one side of his horse, or the other, as he tried to get a bead on Marston. He fired his Redeemer.

Marston felt the round hit him, and the motion forced him off his horse. He then scrambled behind some rocks, and whistled for his horse. The undead creature came to him, and he pulled out the Explosive rifle, turned towards his foe, aimed, and fired.

Much to Jericho’s surprise, the rifle round hit the dirt, and exploded, throwing him off of His horse. He scrambled behind another pile of rocks, and told his horse to come to him. He took the Rail Rocket, and fired it at the rocks that Marston was hiding behind.

Marston saw the object coming at his hiding place, and something told him to move. Managing to get behind cover, the explosion shook him. Once the dust settled, he pulled his Blunderbuss off of his horse, and watched as Jericho charged him with a strange looking crossbow.

Jericho fired several bolts at the rocks surrounding his foe.

Marston made a sound, as if scoffing his foe’s pathetic aim. He then aimed his antique firearm, and pulled the trigger. The power of the Blunderbuss sent Jericho flying. Marston grinned, he was having a good day. Then, he heard a hissing sound. He looked, and saw that the bolts had dynamite attached to them! The blast sent him flying as well.

While the two undead cowboys got back up their feet, Shadow, Jericho’s vamperic horse, looked over at the horse ridden by his rider’s foe. The zombified horse looked back at him. In that instant, the two undead stallions communicated in the horse language that they thought that their riders, and humans, and undead humans, and people in general, were stupid to fight over something that didn’t involve a female, or fouls. They also shared a common regret that they’d never be able to find the right mare for them, ever again. They also shared a regret of never being able to enjoy the water at their favorite watering holes again. Then, their riders jerked more weapons out of their saddles, causing them both to snort, as if to say, “There they go again.”

Jericho looked at what he pulled out, some dynamite, and splitter grenades. He threw the grenades. They split apart, increasing the number of detonations. Marston tried to protect himself behind his rock pile, but the explosions were getting on his nerves. Jericho then threw some dynamite, which caused even more damage. “Had enough?”

Marston looked at what he’d gotten, Boom Bait and Fire Bottles. He gave a weird grin, as he noticed some of the undead, who had been attracted by the sounds. He threw the Boom Bait, the bottle breaking at Jericho’s feet. At this, the undead mobbed Jericho. The vampire pulled out his Redeemer, and shot the creatures, when he heard a hissing sound, and saw the dynamite that had been stored in the bottle. The explosion sent him flying. Marston threw his Fire Bottle, which burned the remaining undead, and set Jericho on fire. He then grabbed his Carcano Rifle, and set himself up again, after running to another rock pile.

Jericho rolled on the ground, managing to smother the flames out. He then used his Redeemer to kill the creatures that were still alive. He then saw Marston had a scooped rifle, so he grabbed his Carson Rifle, ran to another pile of rocks, and took aim, just in time to duck. Jericho popped back up, aimed, and fired. This continues for a while, until both fighters run out of ammo for their respective guns. This time, when they went to their horses, they got all of their weapons.

Marston had his Evans rifle, his pump-action shotgun, his Mauser pistol, his LeMat revolver, and his torch. Jericho had his Blackfish rifle, his Argus shotgun, his Redeemer revolver, two Warmonger pistols, and a Darchwatch Scepter. Both undead warriors grabbed their rifles, and used their Eye Powers – Jericho his Blood Vision, and Marston used his Dead Eye. Jericho could see Marston’s body heat, what there was of it, and Marston saw Jericho slow down a bit, as both aimed, and fired. Both managed to duck, each losing their hats.

Jericho looked at his opponent, with a certain amount of respect. Marston was also impressed. Marston had taken the brunt of several shots, but the silver did little to stop him, and as for Jericho, lead didn’t bother him much anymore. Still, admiration could wait, until the other got the message that things were going to go their way. The firing resumed. Jericho was soon forced to switch to his shotgun, and came in close, firing his four-barrel monstrosity. Marston was also forced to use his shotgun, and come in closer as well. Still, nothing could stop the other fighter. Jericho swung his shotgun, just as Marston swung his, but the blade on Jericho’s gun caught the butt of Marston’s. A growl escaped from Marston, as he looked at the remaining weapons Jericho had, which all had a blade of some sort. He shoved Jericho, and ran, pulling out his Mauser and LeMat. Jericho drew his Warmongers, and ran after him. The two fired at each other, although Jehicho was soon forced to pull out his Redeemer, which really surprised Marston with its ammo capacity. Marston saw the fire from his earlier fire bottle, and thus, pulled out his torch, and got it lit, before swinging it at Jericho, forcing the vampire to leap back. Jericho unsheathed his Scepter, and swung it at the zombie, knocking the torch out of his hands.

Jericho pulled his Redeemer back out, and pointed it at Marston. “Now, unless you want to go through all of this again, could you please wait until I tell you who I am, and perhaps listen to me?”

Marston looked at his foe, clenched his fist, and unclenched it, giving a low growl.

“I think that’s his way of saying he’ll listen,” said Cassidy.

“Shut up,” Jericho muttered.

Marston growled.

“Not you,” said Jericho. “The ghost of a dead Darkwatch agent named Cassidy likes to talk to me.”

Marston raised what was left of one of his eyebrows.

“Long story,” said Jericho. “As you might have noticed, I’m no mortal man, and neither are you. I work for an organization called Darkwatch, and while it’s possible you’ve heard about the activities of some of our rougher members, who I’m busy trying to reprimand, our job is to hunt down the undead. Currently, we’re after a renegade agent that goes by the name of Tala. She’s a vampire, similar to me, only she’s gone all the way to the side of evil. Me, I used to be a train robber, until I messed with the wrong vampire. Now, I’m trying to get my soul back. At the moment, my job is to try and recruit you.”

Marston growled.

“I’ll take that as a no,” said Jericho. “So, a compromise; you come with me, explain to my boss why you won’t join, but, given that you tend to help people, wouldn’t mind helping us out if we need help. Is that fair?”

Marston looked at Jericho, and nodded.

“Good. Now, let’s get going before the sun rises; I become little more than a normal human in the daylight.”

The two walked over to their horses, rode over to their respective hats, put them on, and rode off, in the direction of the sunrise.

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