The two men had seen better times. In the 1950’s, their television show was watched by millions, their images were on all manner of merchandise, and they were adored by the American public. But now their money was just about gone, they lived in the foothills outside of town in a ramshackle squatters hut, and the humiliation of it all had taken its toll. They were nobodies and they knew it.
“I just checked on Silver,” the once daring and resourceful masked rider said to his faithful Indian companion. “I figure he’s got about one more ride in him and then it’s curtains for the big fellow, Tonto!”
“Mmmm, Kemosabe,” was the answer from his taciturn companion. ”A fiery horse with the speed of light. Too bad. Me like Silver.”
“Your eloquence is, well, impressive, trusted scout. Must be the firewater. Which reminds me, we’re down to our last bottle and the food’s almost gone, too. You know what that means, faithful friend?” the masked man queried. “If we’re to return to those thrilling days of yesteryear, we’re going to have to do something with this place to make some money!” Then, looking excitedly at Tonto, he asked, “Do you think you can stay out of trouble long enough for us to make this into a cute little B and B?”
“Mmmm, trouble find Tonto even when him not look for it, Kemosabe.”
“Yeah, like you and that young cowgirl at the Tuscosa County Fair back in ‘87.”
“Hmm, Tonto remember, Kemosabe. Him not make same mistake again.”
“Good, good. Now, what do you think of my idea of a B and B right here in this box canyon, Tonto? We could fix it up and I think folks would flock to it? You know, retro, and all that.”
“Hmm,” Tonto thought, “Tonto never use bed or eat breakfast.”
Taken aback, the Lone Ranger mulled over that last comment, “You’re right! We’ve never slept in beds, eaten breakfast, or even changed our outfits! Not once during all our episodes or since!” Sitting down dejectedly, the masked rider asked himself, “How could I have possibly imagined we’d know how to run a B and B, faithful companion?”
“What we do now, Kemosabe? Tonto has needs.”
“Right. Well, we’ve got the stimulus checks, a few bucks in the bank, the horses, and this place. Can you think of anything else we have that might be worth something, trusty scout? Anything at all?”
“Hmmm, Tonto remember something.”
“Good. What is it?”
The Lone Ranger stood up suddenly as he, too, remembered about the bullets. “Yes, Tonto, the silver bullets! I had them made not as weapons, but as symbols. Symbols of justice to remind me and others that life, like silver, has value and is not to be wasted!” He quickly ran to his secret hiding place where he found them just where he’d hidden them years before. “We’re rich, Tonto, rich! There must be tens of thousands of dollars in silver here, my old friend. We can live out our lives in security and luxury!”
As the Lone Ranger counted out his silver bullets, his taciturn companion took the opportunity to make a point, “Tonto like Absolut, masked man, not that rotgut you get in town. And Tonto want go back to Tuscosa. Tonto has needs.”
“Sure, sure, old friend. But first, I’m thinking maybe we buy a couple of beds, some new duds, and a toaster. Oh, and a new headband for you and maybe some fancy masks for me. Whatya say, companion? You ready for some changes around here?” his masked friend wondered.
Tonto just grunted.