THE BRIDE COMES TO YELLOW SKY is an 1898 western short story by American author Stephen Crane. Originally published in McClure's Magazine, it was written in England. The story's protagonist is a Texas marshal named Jack Potter, who is returning to the town of Yellow Sky with his eastern bride. Potter's nemesis, the gunslinger Scratchy Wilson, drunkenly plans to accost the sheriff after he disembarks the train, but he changes his mind upon seeing the unarmed man with his bride. Stephen Crane (1871-1900) was an American novelist, short-story writer, and poet who is often called the first modern American writer.
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The great Pullman was whirling onward with such dignity of motion that a glance from the window seemed simply to prove that the plains of Texas were pouring eastward. Vast flats of green grass, dull-hued spaces of mesquite and cactus, little groups of frame houses, woods of light and tender trees, all were sweeping into the east, sweeping over the horizon, a precipice.
A newly married pair had boarded this coach at San Antonio. The man's face was reddened from many days in the wind and sun, and a direct result of his new black clothes was that his brick-colored hands were constantly performing in a most conscious fashion. From time to time he looked down respectfully at his attire. He sat with a hand on each knee, like a man waiting in a barber's shop. The glances he devoted to other passengers were furtive and shy.
The bride was not pretty, nor was she very young. She wore a dress of blue cashmere, with small reservations of velvet here and there and with steel buttons abounding. She continually twisted her head to regard her puff sleeves, very stiff, straight, and high. They embarrassed her. It was quite apparent that she had cooked, and that she expected to cook, dutifully. The blushes caused by the careless scrutiny of some passengers as she had entered the car were strange to see upon this plain, under-class countenance, which was drawn in placid, almost emotionless lines.
They were evidently very happy. "Ever been in a parlor-car before?" he asked, smiling with delight.
"No," she answered, "I never was. It's fine, ain't it?"
"Great! And then after a while we'll go forward to the diner and get a big layout. Finest meal in the world. Charge a dollar."
"Oh, do they?" cried the bride. "Charge a dollar? Why, that's too much -- for us--ain't it, Jack?"
"Not this trip, anyhow," he answered bravely. "We're going to go the whole thing."
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