"Well, well, well. I'd heard tell she'd been carried off by some gods-damned wizard and forced to become a wizard herself. Glad to see that's not true and that she landed herself a fine strapping husband instead."
A strange reason for Landstrom to not be suspicious of him, but convenient. Though Silas did have to wonder what sort of mental image Landstrom had of mages, if being a fine physical specimen -- if he did say so himself -- disqualified a man from being a wizard. "Well, you know how it is with rumors."
Silas thanked Landstrom, and they headed off to the temporary booths that sellers of the various supplies had set up to cater to the gathering drive hands and other workers.
"Bullets?" Silas asked as Lainie headed for a booth boasting Finest Ammunition, No Duds. "You can't sell the cattle for much if you've shot them, can you?"
Lainie grinned. After being Silas's student in magic for so long, it was kind of a nice turn of the tables to be the one teaching him. "You don't shoot the cows. You shoot the people who are trying to steal them."
"I still say you're ruining it," Mrs. Bington grumbled.
"It comes out just right when you do it like this, not too spicy at all."
"It's bad for the digestion."
"If anyone complains, I promise I'll stop." She gave Mrs. Bington her friendliest smile, hoping to soothe her ruffled feelings.
"Hmpf. Well, it's not for want of trying, I'll warrant."
"You not being pregnant yet."
"Silas?" she murmured.
"What was your first time?"
He shifted to raise himself over her and looked down at her. His hair had come out of the leather thong he used to tie it back, and now it fell around his face. She pushed it back behind his ear. "What do you want to know a thing like that for, darlin'?" he asked.
"I was just wondering... It's something you know about me that I don't know about you, and that don't seem fair."
He laughed a little. "All right." The laughter faded, replaced by a serious look. "But first I want you to understand something."
"I love you. I don't think about anyone else, or want anyone else. It's you I want, and you I think about. So I don't want you worrying that maybe I'm remembering someone else and comparing you to her or wishing you were her."
"I'm not. At least, I don't think so." He had pretty much settled her mind on that score months ago.
"All right, then." He was silent a moment, then said, "It's stupid."
"I'm sure it isn't."
"Tell me, and I'll decide if it's stupid."
"I want you safe too. If something happened to you, I don't know what I would do. I'll do anything to protect you -- except ask you to be less than the man you are. So don't you make yourself into less than the man you are for my sake."