Character's Fully Name: Joshua "Nevada" Garret
Aliases: Joshua Garretson, Garret Woods
Played By: JP
Character Type: Immortal
Apparent Age: 34
Actual Age: 146 (Born 1958)
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Brown
Skills: Able to ride just about any horse known to man, bareback or saddled, but his main skill, which he actually calls a 'gift' rather than skill, is his ability with a gun. He is one of the fastest quick drawers left in the post-plague world. His reflexes went unmatched in the Gold Rush era and his aim is impeccable.
Personality: A touch on the aggressive side when he decides what it is he wants, but he's sharp where street smarts are concerned and educated enough where books smarts come into play. Rough around the edges, he is aware that he can be a touch on the bossy side from time to time, but honestly doesn't give a damn when it is his place to be bossy. He doesn't out right step on toes, but he does step in to get a job done if the one assigned to the task isn't doing it exactly as fast as Joshua thinks it should get done.
History: Raised in rural unpopulated Nevada, Joshua Garret, an only child, was a born hard worker. His father had left to fight in the Civil War, 1st Battalion Cavalry, when he was just a child and never returned. If the man had died or deserted his family, Joshua never knew, but he took care of his mother until the day she died. He was 25 at the time and had already built a decent business selling crops and various other goods to Gold Miners passing through the territory. It was a fair living and Joshua mainly kept to himself. That was until one of the wagon trains had a bad run in with illness. Stopped in the growing town, one by one those in the passing group died of the fever. A doctor was sent for, but it would take him a week to arrive. Joshua managed to tend to those who needed help and keep himself well at the same time, but being no doctor, he could only ease the pain of their deaths with whiskey, not prevent their passing.
When all was said and done and the doctor finally arrived, of the twenty-five goldrushers, six were left standing. The group included an old man, a grandfather, who had just seen his son, his son's wife and five out of six of his grandchildren die. Only one grandchild survived, a young woman by the name of Nell. The old man, who never quite recovered, and his granddaughter stayed in the camp while the other survivors continued their journey westward. From his sick bed, the old man would spin tales of how he had once been the fastest draw in the West. He told Joshua that a man like him had to practice drawing his gun quickly and so, to please a dying old man and his pretty young granddaughter, Joshua did - almost nonstop. His improvement day by day made Nell giggled to herself, almost as if Joshua was just a younger version of her dying grandfather... and a man who had eased the pain of her family's passing. Faint smiles passed between Joshua and Nell often, perhaps too often.
When the old man finally passed, Joshua did the noble thing and married Nell, a bride barely fifteen years of age. The marriage was not without love, but it was known to both Joshua and Nell that he'd married her because, at the time, it was the right thing to do. He did not always pay her the attention he should have, but he did adore her and she adored him.
For the next nine years they lived together in uninterrupted peace. More people came, heading westward, every single month and their camp had become a make shift town. Nell made dresses for a living for the women and little girls who passed though and Joshua had given up the crop business in return for a more lucrative profession - blacksmith. He aided in an already established shop, run by John Cooper, mending broke wagon wheels and making new ones for those passing through. Due to the profession change, the faces of those heading west were no longer just faces buying crops, but had turned into people that he spent time with, spent time working for because these were people strained in the town for a week or more. That is why what came next was so difficult to understand.
A group of cattle hide sellers came through, heading westward. They were the type despised by locals - cattle stealers. They stole healthy livestock, killed them for their hides and would leave the animal to rot, not even utilizing the meat. Wasteful thieves was too kind a term for the hide sellers. They were told to move out of town before they were moved out by force, but their cargo wagon had lost a wheel. The shop owner, John Cooper, wanted nothing to do with them, but told Joshua if he wanted to aid, he could. Thinking it would get the hide sellers out of town faster and keep the peace, Joshua did. He worked over night to ready a replacement wheel and come morning, took it to the men and saw them out of town, making sure they left. It was only after he returned home that he realized while he worked late for these men, they had raped and murdered his young wife.
Something snapped in Joshua that day and the quiet man was gone, replaced by someone harder. He'd never be the same again. While the town buried his wife, he took his horse and rode the trail to catch up with the hide sellers. With the five men carrying a wagon and him on horse back alone, Joshua caught them in less than a day. A gunfight followed that would later be retold as one hell of an unbelievable tale.
Joshua killed four of the hide sellers before the fifth one was able to fire a shot, despite the rapid speed at which Joshua had gotten off his own shots. It was not fast enough, however, Joshua shot him at the same time, killing the final hide seller before falling to a gunshot wound himself. Silently, as he died, he thanked the old man for the advice.
It was much to his disappointment that he awoke later that night. Nell was gone and he was not. He also had no idea why.
When he rode back into town the next day, blood soaked, but unharmed, the townsfolk didn't question him. In fact, they never would again. Joshua moved to hold an election in town, to change things and make the territory part of the USA where laws would matter and cattle stealers would be hung on sight. No sane man voted against Joshua, seeing how his friendly smile had gone and had been replaced now with a cold, distant stare, and with no disagreements, Joshua became one of Nevada's first U.S. Marshals. With in a matter of weeks, he had been renamed 'Nevada' Garret by the locals because the man, fearless and bold, managed to keep travelers looking for trouble from nearing his territory.
A good twenty years past before Joshua was told who he was, or rather what he was by another immortal. An immoral woman had shown up in town, heard the keen tale of the U.S. Marshall who gunned down five men and returned unharmed, yet with a bullet hole in his shirt the 'size of the territory of Texas.' It seemed, according to the townsfolk that this Marshall also did not seem to age much, nor had he any children upon his wife's death, even after nine years with the woman. The immortal decided to wait and see this Marshall for herself. She felt him coming from a distance, his quickening revealing he had, as the townsfolk revealed, died once already. She decide either she was going to teach him or kill him.. an immortal can do little else with another immortal.
Thankfully, Joshua had an open mind, taking in the story and accepting it readily. Putting away thoughts of cutting his head off, she listened to him. He told the older woman that he'd bared witness to his own healing often - cutting himself here and there, even on purpose sometimes in an effort to understand what they hell was going on. It was only when this woman told him the truth did it begin to make sense. He was immortal and with no doubt in his mind, he accepted it. She taught him to fight with a blade, but Joshua still preferred the two colts that rested on his hips. Once he was a decent sword fighter, the woman continued her own journey, westward. He never saw her again.
Through the years Joshua continued to play the role of law keeper. He's been everything from a prison guard to a police officer, but more often than not, he has been a sheriff. He moved from city to city, state to state to keep up with his own lack of aging.
Most recently, he was sheriff of a town in Oklahoma when the super flu hit. The memories of his younger years, nursing those on the wagon trail back to health resurfaced after many years of being oppressed when duty called for him to aid the dying once more. He hasn't, as of July 24th, 2002, moved west towards his home land of Nevada, nor as he moved towards Colorado for lack of knowing which direction to go.
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