Then he opened the rough board door of the jakes and stepped in.
The judge was seated upon the closet. He was naked and he rose up smiling and gathered him in his arms against his immense and terrible flesh and shot the wooden barlatch home behind him.
Except for the reactions of two of the three men who later go to that toilet after the bolt is unlocked (and the judge has left?) – “I wouldnt go in there if I was you[.]”; “Good God almighty[.]” – , that’s it.
I thought when I first read the book, and still sort of suppose, that the judge had smothered the ‘kid’ in his embrace. But he could’ve drowned him in pissy shit, I guess, or gnashed his throat open, or vnseam’d him from the Naue toth’ Chops. (It’s remotely possible that the judge is still doing something to the kid or the kid’s corpse when the other men go out to relieve themselves.)
Whatever happened to the ‘kid’, it’d have to be something that would horrify these hardened wild-West guys, no? Choked with his own entrails, flayed, brain drawn out his nose, … –what would alarm these guys??
Very effective for a book tirelessly specific about gore to leave this detail open.