View Full Version : Slick Rock - The aftermath
Black Hills Barb
11-07-2005, 02:01 PM
Welcome to Slick Rock!
THE PRELUDE: Last year several residents of Belle Alley began a saga that took place in the fictitious town of Slick Rock, someplace in the west. Unlike most towns in the west where the ratio of men to women was often 10/1, Slick Rock boasted a large population of ladies. Many of the women who lived there also held positions of prominence and were well respected in the town. On the night of the big block party a severe storm swept through the town. While most of our heroines survived, sadly, some did not. Other’s left Slick Rock, never to return. But those that stayed on and rebuilt the town and their lives. Word traveled and new inhabitants soon took up residence there as well.
This story takes place one year after the storm. The town is preparing for their annual block party. It will be the biggest, grandest celebration ever held in the town and the first party since the deadly storm. Please join us as our heroes and heroines once again embark on this adventure.
Everyone is welcome to join in and develop their own character(s). Just be careful about developing someone else’s that may not be able to participate or keep pace with your storyline.
Black Hills Barb
11-07-2005, 02:03 PM
She lifted her apron and wiped the ink from her hands as she moved toward source of the incessant tapping. She patted her pockets looking for the pencil before realizing that it was stuck through the bun at the nape of her neck. In one fluent movement her right hand plucked it from her hair, she touched the tip of it to her tongue and lowered herself into the chair as she reached for her pad with her left hand.
“Returning Slick Rock Friday’s stage. STOP"
She smiled as she folded the note and placed it in her pocket. “It’s about time!” She thought to herself. One year was a long time - too long. The town had changed. The people had changed. Most of all, she had changed.
11-07-2005, 02:12 PM
can't remember exactly where I was but here goes:
Angel was riding back into town to start preparing for the party, all the while thinking about Nathan and wondering how he would react if'n he saw her all dressed up, "damn girl, quit thinkin about that man and get you mind back on business" - but all she could think about was a perfect dress for the party, so on the way into town Angel went over to the dress makers, of course she went to the back door as usual, didn't want anyone thinking she might actually need a dress and sure didn't want that bandit coming into her bed quarters after her pantaloons, he might meet with a fate much worse than death........ AFter checking to make sure no one was watching Angel slipped in the back door, not wanting to scare the owner she softly said "hello, anyone here?"
11-07-2005, 09:51 PM
Over at the Hotel, still owned by Shaky D and Nevada Skye, there was much noise and confusion and the employees were getting ready for the Big Event. It was to be held in their Grand Ballroom as had been planned last year before the disasterous storm hit. The Hotel had been badly damaged, and the new owners had a lot of work cut out for them to restore the great Hotel to it's former glory. But they had never even thought of quitting and going back east, this was their dream and they planned on seeing it through. Plus they had made new and good friends in the town of Slick Rock, which has growing every day into a more cultured town than before. With the advent of the train through their small town, there was more money and the townspeople did not have to reply so heavily on the mines and cattle droves. Of course, this also brought in more trouble, and the Sheriff had to add two more deputies to help with the occasional riff raff that came with the money.
11-07-2005, 10:07 PM
Giyuga led her pony into town slowly as she observed and studdied the town of Slick Rock and it's inhabitants. She hoped it was far enough away from her native lands that the white people here may treat her better than her former neighbors in GA. Giyuga tied her pony to a hitching post outside of what appeared to have once been a glorious hotel.
After whispering a few comforting words to her pony, Giyuga unstrapped her small bag of belongings and stepped into the hotel. Nervously, she asked, "Hello, anyone here?" Giyuga hoped her Tsalagi accent didn't show too much as she talked.
(Out Of Charachter-Before anyone asks, Giyuga is a Tsalagi (Cherokee) word for chipmunk)
11-07-2005, 10:31 PM
Meanwhile at the river port facility...Capt McClellan could see the ranch hands waiting for him on the pier as the ship docked in Galveston, Tx ship harbor. His mission was to escort the delivery of a very precious cargo - two white Arabian horses that were sold to a cattle Tycoon. As the gangway was lowered he called out to the Tycoon's manager to come aboard and get the horses.
Then out of an empty warehouse on the other side of the pier a grungy group of banditos appeared....
11-08-2005, 12:04 AM
Gypsy sat astride her paint mare and looked into the distance...she could not believe she had been gone from her beloved life in slickrock, but knew that it would never hold the quiet charm that it once had for her...so much time had passed, and it seemed that new ways and new folks would not be denied...she would have to learn to gracefully dance and sway through these winds of change, but, time to reinvent herself later...She wondered how the last year had changed her ever more mysterous brother, Nathan was becomming a creature she barely recognised...which reminded her...he had explaining to do...
11-08-2005, 09:08 AM
He just wasn’t any cowboy, not this man from atop of the frigid peaks of the Colorado Rockies. No he was a different sort, from his Montana peak cowboy hat to the way he carried his engraved antiqued Colt twin’s. Those .44’s did his angry talking, but mostly the quiet unknown cowpoke had a past and he kept to himself mostly.
He rode a tall 16 ½ hand brown spotted American Paint horse, they say that was given to him by a Lakota Indian Chief, for saving the chiefs’ only daughter from the hands of renegade Yankee soldiers.
His brown hair neatly combed under that tall hat and the way he sat in the saddle told you he didn’t stand for much horseplay. His steely blue eyes never gave away his thoughts but his quiet assuring smile could be a deceptive decoy if you stood on the wrong side of right.
A stranger standing over 6 foot gave no clue to his name, nor did the jingle bob’s on his silver plated spurs. His twin .44’s gave company to a engraved ’94 Marlin in the same caliber, and the side by side 12 gauge Colt Stagecoach shotgun left no doubt in your mind he played for keeps.
He had been on this trail of desperate men from the Colorado territory for many years, winding endlessly through the vegetation of Wyoming, Montana, Utah, New Mexico, California, Arizona and Nevada. His last clue’s led him into this quiet little hamlet.
Never quite sure where he was as he read the sign at the outskirts of town;
He was need of some local hospitality, a non drinkin’ man he only drank sarsaparilla, water or fresh milk. Some died making fun of the gentleman’s choice of beverage, some wished they never heard his name. Some of the ladies from the local sporting place recognized his features from worn out silhouettes seen through out the west and recalled the stories of this man, but no one was sure, and no one dared to ask his name.
The town seemed quiet enough except its population consisted on more women folk the men, and most appeared to be very successful, as given by the manner of their dress.
As he climbed off the tall stead and tied his packhorse to the hitching rail, he took long slow strides towards the entrance to the general store. Glancing slowing and deliberately over his shoulders, taking in all the visual information like a stenographer recording history.
His slow raspy voice had a soothing quality but still left you with a rugged image, He approached the lovely clerk behind the counter of the general store.
And asked politely of the lady, “ Excuse ma’am, is there any stables in town I can board my horse for a few days while I take in the sights and relax? And could you recommend a good hotel? I am mighty tired.”
The brown haired, and browned eye beauty spoke softly and directly, pointing up the street to a hotel owned by Shaky D and Nevada Skye. And then she pointed in the opposite direction to the blacksmith shop and boarding stable for the horses. Her curiosity got the best of her. “Excuse me Sir, Are you staying in town for awhile?”
I mean if you are, there is a big shindig fixin to take place, and you are more the welcome to come.”
The tall stranger, just tipped his hat, smiled at the lady, thanked her for the information and the invite and quietly disappeared.
11-08-2005, 09:58 PM
Back at Galveston Harbor....The banditos struck quickly killing all but one ranch hand and mortally wounding the manager.
Capt McClellan's crew did react swiftly though and when the dust settled all the banditos had been slain in a withering amount of rifle fire from the crew of the USRCS McCullough.
Capt McClellan went over to the manager who pleaded with the young officer to see to the young ranch hand who survived and get the horses to the Tycoon. Capt McClellan had tired of life at Sea and the Rum and Cigar Wars of the Carribean and with his word to the manager decided to retire from active duty and fulfill a promise to a dying man.
The manager died quickly as the young ranch hand approached McClellan and took hold of the horses and eyed the dying man lovingly. Capt McClellan then took a good look at the young man close up and realized what the manager did not have time to tell him. Seth - the young ranch hand was the son of the manager.
Capt McClellan told Seth of his vow and told Seth to go get a place in town for the two of them - while he settled affairs. Seth said, "Capt, are you not going to ask where we are headed?" Capt McClellan realized in the craziness of it all that he had no idea where he was headed and looked up to hear the young man say - "The boys back at Slick Rock - will not believe this!!" Then Seth moved out into town to find quarters (that Capt sure uses fancy words) for the Capt and himself and find a place to board the horses.
Capt McClellan went back to his state room on the ship to gather his belongings, say goodbye to his crew and to submit all the paperwork to headquarters in Washington, DC for his retirement. He was ready to bid farewell to the Sea going life and find out just how wild the West was!!.....
11-08-2005, 10:55 PM
Angel Outlaw introduced herself to the stranger immediately upon seeing him enter the Livery. She was a fine specimen of a lady, any other time… But he had business in Slick Rock. He had traveled a long way through many a canyon, mountain pass and arroyo, and he was tired. He just wanted to make sure that his horses were taken care of first.
He paid Angel Outlaw in gold coin for 5 days stay, and then hurried off to the Hotel.
The tall stranger took the stroll, with bedroll and long guns in hand, to the Hotel, upon entering he was met by Nevada Skye and her husband Shaky D, with a friendly smile and a hardy handshake. The stranger said he needed a room that overlooked the street for about five days. Nevada Skye, asked the stranger to sign in. As he bent over the counter grabbing the quill in hand, his coat opened partially to reveal a large gold star, which read “UNITED STATES” in blue lettering, but she couldn’t see the bottom rocker on the star.
After signing the register, Shaky D helped the stranger with his gear, up to room #4.
Nevada Skye read the register. Her eyes opened wide, as she glared at the name in disbelief,
“Kid Sopris, United States Secret Service “.
His room was one of the rooms that had just been renovated from the storm, before Shakey D left the stranger; the stranger threw a $20 dollar gold piece to Shakey and said, “Thank you for the help, and when you see the Sheriff, would you send him up to my room”? Shakey D politely nodded in agreement and closed the strangers door.
Flyin' Jenny Dare
11-09-2005, 02:17 AM
[At the train station, amid steam and smoke and the madding crowd...]
"Thank you, Mr. Forrest." Jenny Dare accepted her manager's arm as she alighted from the first-class carriage. "Anything to report?"
"Yes, Miss Dare." He picked up her valise and led her through the throng of porters and passengers. "The crew and I arrived two days ago, safe and sound. We've finished set-up; all's well on that score. The boys have seen to your luggage."
"How is the Nike?"
"Excellent. And Helios?"
"His Highness is lodged very comfortably at the livery." Forrest shook his head at the thought of 'prince' Helios, a red chestnut ambler of rakish temperament and Miss Dare's equine companion on many of her journeys into the heavens. "I've arranged your lodging as well. There's a fine hotel here, if you'd like to go there directly."
"Please." She paused to give her skirts a little shake, hoping to dislodge some of the dust that sullied the fine fabric. It was her favorite traveling dress, stylish in cut and all in the vibrant blue she had made her signature color; a dress to attract attention. Ah, attracting attention! "What about the advertising, Mr. Forrest?"
"I've seen to it, of course." Forrest took a folded newspaper from his coat pocket and presented it to his employer. The advertisement, in large and florid typeface, read:
"Queen of the Skies"
FLYIN' JENNY DARE
Intrepid Lady Aeronaut
Wild West Adventuress
Late of Captain Rowley's Incorporated Shows
Will ASCEND THE FIRMAMENT
upon the back of PEGASUS
A SPECTACLE NOT TO BE MISSED.
The text was, as always, accompanied by the familiar engraving of herself aboard a fiery steed, both of them perched midair upon a platform, the great striped envelope of the balloon looming above. "Very fine, Mr. Forrest. Anything else?" She allowed him to maneuver her out of the depot, where, happily, the crowd was much thinner.
"An interview for the newspaper this afternoon, Miss Dare. And the gala. You'll be attending?"
"I shall indeed. I look forward to it exceedingly!" Jenny grinned at her manager. "Tell me, have you seen any of these harlots and hoydens we've been warned about?"
Mr. Forrest reddened slightly; he was a terribly proper man, though by now used to his employer's own 'hoydenish' ways. "I haven't, ma'am. And I haven't looked."
"Of course you haven't, my dear Mr. Forrest. But I admit I greatly hope to meet some of the forward-thinking ladies who run this town's affairs."
Jenny recalled with uncompromising clarity the circumstances by which she had come to be 'warned' about Slick Rock's female population. She had remarked to her companions at a dinner party that she had received an offer to perform as part of the town's festivities, adding that the town's population seemed to be largely female. A certain Mr. Evans, who was well-known to despise any notion of woman's rights, launched into a harangue about Slick Rock, which town, though he had never personally visited there, must be a refuge for "mannish women, hoydens and harlots of the lowest kind" and had advised Miss Dare to avoid the place at all costs. To this remarkable performance Jenny had responded smilingly that, on the contrary, she now was firmly resolved to see Slick Rock for herself, and in fact was particularly desirous to do so, so that she might congratulate the ladies of the town on their endeavours.
"And so I shall do," she murmured to herself as Mr. Forrest guided her to her conveyance. "I am certain that I shall meet everyone who is anyone here, and furthermore," she vowed, "I'll give them a show worthy of the crowned heads of Europe, to spite Evans and all his ilk!"
11-09-2005, 02:42 AM
Shaky D decended the stairs, looking thoughtfully at the $20 gold piece Kid Sopris had given him. At the desk, Nevada Skye looked up and said "I sure hope that our newest boarder didn't bring trouble with him. We have enough going on now, what with just finishing up the Hotel's refurbishing in time for the Gala Party, all the rooms being booked and trying to break in the new employees."
"Well," replied Shaky, "He has paid us enough for two weeks plus all his meals, in advance for once. But I do wonder where an Officer of the Law would get money like that. In my experience, most Lawmen barely have enough money to get by on."
"Don't I remember!" laughed Skye. "Good thing my Great Aunt Zelda left us her estate, or we certainly wouldn't own our lovely Silver Queen Hotel. Do you miss all that excitement from the Texas Rangers sometimes Shaky?"
"Well, I haven't exactly had time to miss anything, my love, our life has been pretty exciting for the last year, if you remember!" grinned Shaky.
The door opened again, and Skye saw a pretty dark haired woman looking around. As it had been so bright outside, the new visitor didn't see them right away, and asked if anyone was there. She had a slight accent that Skye couldn't place right away.
"Welcome" Skye said to her. "Are you looking for a room?"
11-09-2005, 11:51 AM
Once in his room with a glass of water, Kid Sopris began to look at the presidential orders to terminate the ‘Jerky J Gang’ and the tintype photos taken of the wanted men. One sip of the water, and Kid Sopris knew it was fresh spring water. It has a clean clear refreshing taste, much different then the muddy river and stream waters of the last several months.
“Swindler Swine”, a robust fellow of his late twenties, was once a pig farmer, who went bust on a government claim. Swine was described as stocky cuss of half breed decent, standing about 5’10” tall, gray eyes, greasy black hair worn in a pony tail, tied with a
”Pigs tail”. Mostly seen unshaven and known to frequent sporting houses on the outskirts of many western towns. Swine sported a Colt 1851 Navy revolver, that he stole years ago and was known to display and brag about his exploits.
“Hung Wun Lo”, A Chinese railroad worker who escaped a chain gang after being sentenced to death for killing a railroad foreman with a railroad spike. Lo was a short stature of a man, thin and olive complexion. No facial hairs except for a long skinny beard that hung from the center of his lower lip and black hair, and black as coal eyes. Lo spoke little English but understood Swine’s commands very well. Lo wore traditional Chinese linen, except for a Colt 1860 Army revolver he stole from the prison guard when escaping.
“Chin Whet”, A half-breed Apache Indian and a Chinese runt. Seems His mother was kidnapped when she was young by a raiding band of Apaches down in the New Mexico Territory. His father was reported to be a wild man who enjoyed too much Peyote for medicine man. Whet was a result of a birth gone wrong. Whet, was no taller the 4’2”, approximately equal to a bag of flour in weight, and was considered to be the most dangerous around women. Whet has been convicted in three territories of statutory murder but escaped the hangman’s noose each time. Whet carried no firearms but was deadly with Bow and Arrow and blades.
“Jerky J.”, The leader, so named by his father, who stated when the kid was born he just Jerked out and continue to jerk about in his mothers arms for days. Jerky was a lean cuss and well educated for the time. He could read and write and knew his numbers, and always was responsible for dividing the ‘spoils of war’ for the gang. Jerky was reported to stand approximately 5’10” and weighed about 160 lbs. He had one green eye, and had lost his left eye in a prison fight down in Texas many years ago. Because of his poor eyesight Jerky was known to carry several sawed off 10 gauge shot guns for his weapons.
All four of these men were wanted for the armed robbery of a Unites States Mint train and the Attempted murder of the President of the United States. The train was on its way from the Denver Mint through Glenwood Springs and on to Aspen Colorado. The gang stole $500,000.00 of unsigned U.S. paper currency notes. The President just happened to be aboard the train when the robbery took place.
Kid Sopris was not assigned to protect the President, but rather was given all the most difficult of jobs of tracking, and if necessary terminating with extreme prejudice, the wanted parties.
The Kids eyes grew heavy as he stared once again at the tintypes, within moments , he fell fast asleep on the bed.
When Kid Sopris awoke, he did not know how long he had been asleep, but he was pretty sure it was a new day, as he looked out the window, then sun was above the mountains to the east, there were children playing in the dusty streets below and small groups of townsfolk huddled about talking about some “Intrepid Lady Aeronaut”, whatever that is? And he could hear woman singing to herself in the room next door to his. “Nice Voice”, he thought to himself. Never mind he thought, he needed to clean himself up and shave.
After Kid Sopris got himself cleaned up and dressed he set about looking for the sheriff.
He first went down to the livery to check on his horses and spoke briefly with angel Outlaw about the beautiful horse in the stable next to his paint. ‘Angel Outlaw said, “Well that horse belongs to FLYIN' JENNY DARE! The Intrepid Lady Aeronaut”! There’s that name again Intrepid Lady Aeronaut, what is that, he thought to himself?
He tipped his hat and thanked Angel Outlaw, and set his sights back on the town square.
While heading to the sheriff’s office he ran into a well-dressed and spoken individual who was handing out flyers. The gentleman introduced himself as Mr. Forrest and handed the Kid a flyer that read:
"Queen of the Skies"
FLYIN' JENNY DARE
Intrepid Lady Aeronaut
Wild West Adventuress
Late of Captain Rowley's Incorporated Shows
Will ASCEND THE FIRMAMENT
upon the back of PEGASUS
A SPECTACLE NOT TO BE MISSED.
Kid thanked Mr. Forrest, folded up the flyer and stuck it his vest pocket. Mr. Forrest never saw the Gold Star pinned on the left breast of Kid Sopris, hidden behind the vest.
Kid also noticed that the town was in a festive mood, everybody was smiling saying “Good Morning”, there seem to be a lot of strangers in town, and the town looked real clean, new paint and wood, even the wood sidewalks looked new. Very different from most small towns he has visited.
Kid passed a very young lady on the street that spoke with a Tsalagi (Cherokee) accent. He tipped his hat to the young lady as he passed and went about looking for the town sheriff.
11-09-2005, 02:38 PM
CRASH!!! The china had hit the wall instead of the ladies maid, Rebecca, it had been aimed at. Rebecca ran from the room to get a new glass of tea for the cruel woman who had been her employer since she was twelve.
"And make sure it had the proper amount of cream this time!" Gilded Goldie Mikulus shouted after her. She sat down in front of her new hand carved vanity table and brass edged mirror. She ran her brush through her (obviously fake) golden hair and pinched her cheeks to give them the rosy color she so often simulated with rouge. It had been a month since the "accidental" death of her husband and her move to the small town of Slick Rock, and she was enjoying her new life of freedom.
Goldie had always been a calculating woman. Marrying her husband at the age of sixteen and leaving her life of sin had been no coincidence, nor had it been true love for her. Attachment, affectation and remorse were for the week, stupid, and those she so often took advantage of.
She moved from the vanity to the window, looking for signs of the delivery she was expecting. The two white Arabians would be the jewel of her collection.
"Where is that damned girl?" she mused. "I need to get dressed for town." Apparently, there was talk of a 'Spectacle Not To Be Missed,' and she was intent on finding out about it.
Rebecca hurried in with a new tray and placed it in front of her mistress.
"I'm going to wear the red velvet," she commanded and sipped her tea.
"Yes, ma'am," her maid said meekly.
Today was going to be good.
11-09-2005, 03:42 PM
Giyuga was startled when someone answered her. She had been in the wild for so long, words aimed directly at her were kinda scary. She gulped down her fear and tried to answer the lady that had addressed her.
"Yes, I am looking for a place to stay, but I don't have much to pay for one. I am also looking for a job...do you know if anyone has any openings?" Giyuga hoped her accent didn't make her somewhat broken English any harder to dicifer.
11-09-2005, 04:48 PM
Nevada Skye carefully considered the young woman before her. Since she was usually a good judge of character, she thought that this was a good opportunity to hire more help that they desperately needed.
"I am Nevada Skye, co-owner of this hotel and I could certainly use some help around here, and a small room that you will have to share until after our celebration is over is available along with your pay. What is your name? We need someone to help with decorations, maids, cooks, personal ladies maids, and livery help. When can you start, and what can you do? Meals are also included" Skye said, figuring that the young woman could probably use the job right away. Lord knew they needed all the help they could get, what with the big party only being five days away. With Slick Rock full of all manner of people, including Chinese, Mexicans, Indians and Easterners, the woman's speech and exotic looks did not bother her.
11-09-2005, 10:04 PM
"My name is Giyuga. I would help anywhere you put me. If I do not know how to do it, I will learn quick. Wado," (thank you) Giyuga started back towards the door as she continued, "I have to put my pony up before it gets any later. She will get nervous if I leave her alone too long. Do you know of a livery stable in which I could house her?"
11-09-2005, 11:35 PM
Kid Sopris finally found the Sheriff, who was none other then the Legendary man himself Joaquin Alone. Kid Sopris knew of this lawman integrity and straight forwardness in dealing with outlaws. Kid Sopris shook hands with the Sheriff, produced his credentials and wanted posts for the outlaws. Kid Sopris also produced one other thing. One of the unsigned U.S. Paper currency notes picked up in a town several months ago.
Sheriff Joaquin Alone looked over the tintypes carefully, saying, “I don’t recall seeing anybody matching these here tintypes. But there are a lot of new folks in town and some of the worst bunch of characters have been staying out at the sporting houses just outside of town. They never call for me; if there is a problem they deal with the problem very effectively on their own. I just go down to pick up the pieces, you might say”.
Sheriff Joaquin Alone and Kid Sopris exchanged pleasantries and the latest news from the nation‘s Capitol. They both had a good laugh talking about some of the old stories, as both knew some of the old lawmen from years ago.
Sheriff Joaquin Alone offered the full services of the Sheriff’s Office, and wished Kid Sopris good luck in his search. Then Sheriff Alone said something very curious to Kid Sopris as he was about to leave, but the Kid didn’t show any sign of concern. “Be careful where you go, there’s a rumor that death seems to follow you“!
Heading out of the Sheriff Office, Kid Sopris felt hungry and it’s been a good while since he had a really good meal, so he began his search for a café.
11-09-2005, 11:51 PM
Back in Galveston...Capt McClellan had secured a leave of absence from his bosses in DC with formal retirement to be decided upon later.
His crew gave him a nice present for his departure - a chest rig that held his spy glass and a small 1849 colt that had been converted to shoot rimfire cartridges. Of course as he knew that pistol was for emergency only - his real arsenal was a set of New Model Russians, a spencer and a 12 gauge Martini Henry - that was given to him as a gift by Her Majesties Rescue Boat Service for his brief stint as an advisor over in England.
As Seth and Capt McClellan left for Slick Rock with the two beautiful Arabian horses - Seth started talking. "Capt Mac - the Tycoon you keep talking about is a Baroness and Slick Rock it is a little different from what you is probably used to".
Why would Slick Rock be so different Seth? asked Capt McClellan
"Well there is a lot of women thar and some of em aint so nice...even the pretty ones." - said Seth
Capt McClellan laughed and smiled - he was actually more interested then ever to see this "Slick Rock" and due to never being married and spending the better part of 10 years at Sea - looked forward to a town filled with women folk...even the meaner ones!
So Seth tell me more about this lady cattle baron or baroness?....
Black Hills Barb
11-10-2005, 07:38 AM
These days Slick Rock seemed to be bursting at the seams. Former residents were returning and new people were arriving. The sound of hammers and saws echoed from dawn until dusk. Everyone had gone all out to make Saturday’s event the first of many grand parties that the town would see. This one had come to be named the "Homecoming" by many of the residents that had weathered the storm and its aftermath.
Barb stood in front of the window of her small telegraph/newspaper office and watched the activity on the street. Her thoughts drifted back to the terrible storm that had taken lives of some many friends and driven so many others off in search of new jobs and homes. She lost many dear friends that night but two could never be replaced. Toby and Jim….neither man was the type to assess the true danger in a situation before plunging headlong into it if they sensed urgency. Jim had died instantly while attempting a rescue gone horribly wrong and Toby had succumbed to injuries received during the same tragedy.
She supposed that if every cloud had a silver lining, hers had to be that she had made a lifelong friend in the following days. And that friend would be arriving back in Slick Rock in just a few days.
She shook her head and checked her reflection in the glass panes of the window. “Get your mind on your work now. You have an interview to conduct.” She slipped her pad and pencil into her pocket and went in search of “The Intrepid Lady Aeronaut”.
11-10-2005, 08:00 AM
As Capt McClellan and Seth headed out of town they sent a telegraph to Baroness Mikulus. It was short but read as this....
"....Manager and all ranch hands but me killed in gun battle with Banditos. The two arabians are fine and a USRCS Capt is escorting them with me to Slick Rock. We should arrive in time for event.
Capt McClellan plans to stay for awhile in Slick Rock - he talks a little funny - says he is from Virginny - but the words he uses is awful fancy. he dresses fancy too but he is awfully good with a gun.
He and ten men from his ship killed 25 bandititos without one of his men even getting hurt."
11-10-2005, 11:30 AM
Duzy couldn't believe it had been nearly a year since she had left Slick Rock. So many memories.... losing her beloved Thomas, her brother Billy and so many more in the storm. After working side by side burying their loved ones, Barb had forgiven her for her deceit and had asked her to stay. Duzy knew that she still had Angel Outlaw to consider, but with all the witnesses gone, she felt safe enough to return for the celebration of rebuilding the little town she loved so much. She had sent Barb the message that she would be on the Friday stage and was packing to leave. She hadn't told her friend that she just may be staying!
Excited, she unwrapped her new corset and looked at it with awe. A wine colored satin trimmed in black that matched her black satin chemise and bloomers and a lovely ballgown that was sure to catch more than one admiring eye. Men! What was she thinking? That was the last thing she needed after all she had been through. Looking at her ballgown again, she thought it would be nice to dance again and there was nothing wrong with a little flirting afterall! Smiling to herself, she wondered if they had caught that crazy underwear thief!
Now, she just had to remember that she was known as Miss Anne Wales, her given name, and not the notorious outlaw Frank, whom everyone but Angel Outlaw and Barb thought had died in the storm...
Duzy had carried through with her plan and had spent her ill gotten goods on an orphanage for all the children that had been left behind. She had found that she was a natural at gambling and knew that Slick Rock was just the place for a "lady gambler." She would strike a deal with the saloon owner, or if need be, she had enough stashed back to open her own establishment. She had hoped that Lady LaSalle would still be there and they could become partners, but Barb had told her Lady LaSalle had moved on after the storm. Maybe she could hire someone to locate her and talk her into coming back. Now that was one gutsy woman and someone who would watch your back! Come to think of it, that was what was so great about Slick Rock, the womenfolk there were unlike any she had seen in all her years of traveling.
It would be bittersweet, but it was time for Miss Duzy Anne Wales to start living again. It would be so good to see her dear friend Barb again!
11-10-2005, 12:21 PM
After getting Goyuga settled into her tiny room and showing her where she needed to help by carrying supplies to the newly finished rooms, Skye was back at the desk checking reservations. Shaky had gone down to the Sheriff's office to see if he had returned and to meet the new deputies. Shaky had given the new Sheriff a lot of help when he first took over the office, and they had become good friends. All at once the front door opened, and it was like a small tornado whipped into the foyer. This had to be the "Lady Aeronaut" everyone had heard so much about! Her manager and crew had been at the Hotel for two days already in the smaller rooms, Miss Dare had booked one of the four suites. The lady certainly knew how to attrack attention, thought Skye, as she looked at the lovely blue dress Miss Dare had on. She knew Barb was coming over later to interview her.
"Hello, Miss Skye" said Mr Forrest, the manager. "I'd like to introduce you to Miss Jenny Dare, Lady Aeronaut Extrodinare".
"Well, I am so happy to meet such an adventerous Lady" replied Skye, as the ladies eyed each other. "I am sure your show will be a big success here, especially with our Homecoming Party on Saturday".
"And I am looking forward to meeting all the ladies of this town" said Miss Dare, "I have heard you ladies are yourselves pretty extraodinary. People back East speak of this place almost as a legend".
Skye looked a bit taken aback by this comment, even though she knew the women of the town were more independent than most, which was one of the reasons she and Shaky had moved here. Even though Skye's Aunt and the rest of her family were "Society", Skye herself had abandoned that life style for a while to perform int he Wild West Extravganza as a Trick Shooter. She had met Shaky in Texas several years ago when he had was a Texas Ranger. Several of the performers in her Show had been killed, and an attempt had been made on her life as well. Shaky had caught the lunatic responsible, and the rest was history. They had come to Slick Rock to live their own lives as they saw fit. The women here had become close friends with Skye and liked Shaky for his no nonsense ways. It no longer surprised her that the women could handle any job that came up, not after they had ridden out and caught some really vicious bandits just before The Storm.
Knowing the other townwomen as she did, she replied with a small laugh to Miss Dare, "I'm sure you will not be disappointed with our citizens, but I did not know we were a legend. Now you, I am sure you are in all the papers with your daring! Your room is all ready, if you need anything please call on Rosie, the ladies maid I have assigned to you."
With that Jenny Dare swept up the beautiful staircase to her room.
11-10-2005, 04:38 PM
As Goldie prepared for her visit to town, she heard hoof beats in the distance. Soon after came a knock at her door.
"Rebecca," she called. The young woman hurried to the door, in fear of flying objects if she was too slow, opened it and was handed a telegram.
Goldie promptly plucked it from her hands before she could blink and closed the door on the messenger boy who had been waiting for a tip. "Finally..."
"....Manager and all ranch hands but me killed in gun battle with Banditos. The two arabians are fine and a USRCS Capt is escorting them with me to Slick Rock. We should arrive in time for event.
Capt McClellan plans to stay for awhile in Slick Rock - he talks a little funny - says he is from Virginny - but the words he uses is awful fancy. he dresses fancy too but he is awfully good with a gun.
He and ten men from his ship killed 25 bandititos without one of his men even getting hurt."
"Well, finally a man worth meeting." She rolled her steel blue eyes. And at least her horses were well and would be on time. "Seth, however, sounds as if he may as well have been shot dead with the rest of those fools."
Rebecca nodded solemnly and quickly left the room.
Goldie mused to herself a moment, then moved to one of the many mirrors in the room and smiled. She strode out to her buggy, climbed in, and fiercely whipped the horses into a full gallop, nearly running over the stable boy.
When she alighted in front of the livery in town, she hastily tossed some coins to its owner, who scowled. Goldie smoothed her skirts, opened her parasol, and strode over to the saloon. She needed a drink, badly. It would bring her color back and drown out the incessant noises of the construction going on all around. She pushed aside the makeshift doors of the damaged, but slowly recovering saloon, and made her way to the bar. She sat down quickly and nodded to the barkeep. He poured her her usual glass of brandy, and set it in front of her. With one fluent motion, she had downed the contents of the snifter and nodded for another.
"Ain't goin' so well at Gilded Ranch, ma'am?"
Goldie smiled, oh so charmingly. "I'm just so lost without the Late Mr. Mikulus... I don't know what to do without a strong, handsome male to look after me..."
The barkeeper flushed and moved quickly to the drunk at the other end of the bar who was helping himself to a bottle of whiskey. Goldie savored the next few sips, letting the burning liquid slide down her throat. She finished her glass, threw some coins on the counter, and made her way back out into the sunshine. As she surveyed the town, she noticed a crowd staring at a woman in a vibrant blue gown and talking excitedly amongst themselves. She then noticed the harassed looking man handing out papers to passersby. She went to him directly and snatched a flier from his hand. Before he could get the stunned look off his face she was on the move again, inspecting the contents of her hands.
"It will be a spectacle not to be missed!" he called after her.
"Queen of the Skies"
FLYIN' JENNY DARE
Intrepid Lady Aeronaut
Wild West Adventuress
Late of Captain Rowley's Incorporated Shows
Will ASCEND THE FIRMAMENT
upon the back of PEGASUS
A SPECTACLE NOT TO BE MISSED
"So it seems," she said. She tore the paper and threw it on the ground. She hated competition. This would take all the glory from her new Arabians. This was a problem...
11-11-2005, 12:35 AM
When Kid Sopris found the café they were still trying to put the new sign up, so he never did see the name. But, once inside this cozy place, was the cutest little waitress, with red hair that make a fireball look dull. An eyes so blue, that the sky would pale in comparison, and skin that was so soft and milky looking that a newborn baby would cry for. This little filly stood no taller than knee high to a fern, rosy cheeks and button nose, and a southern drawl that just melt your heart, when she said, “And what can I get fer you, Suggar?” Kid stuttered briefly try to get the word “Coffee” out of them trembling lips.
She smiled and gave him a wink that would have melted ice cream on a cold day. She brought over some fresh black coffee, and said, “Mister we got some fresh beefsteak ifin you have a mind to try some. Comes with all the fixins and a piece of fresh baked apple pie!” Kid responded, “Well missy, that sound right temptin, I 'll have some that!” It wasn’t too long that, she game by and freshen that coffee with a smile.
While he was still waiting for his beefsteak, he overheard two cowpokes talking about the killing, down at the one of the sporting houses the earlier this morning. Seems this real ugly short runt of a half-breed that had a disposition like a cobra who just had his dinner stolen, with a funny Chinese name got in to it with one of the black Mississippi ladies, who don’t take no guff, from raunchy cowhands, no matter what color their money was. Well, this here fella came at her with a knife as big as Gettysburg. Well she picked up a chair and hit him so hard that when he fell, he landed on his own knife. Damn thing was so big that it came out the other side by 6”. Hell we just got out of there before they fetched the sheriff.
Kid thought that must why he saw the sheriff hightail it out of town on his way into the café. But pay it no mind, He was going to eat and then go see the sheriff again. Meanwhile these here two fellers, re-told the story to every and anyone who would listen, and each time it got bigger and better.
Finally the beefsteak arrived, and none too soon, he was hungry enough to eat the southern portion of a northbound bear! OOHH wee, and was the waitress turning on the charm!
Well the steak and the fresh apple pie was just as every bid as good as the waitress promised, in fact the pie was still warm when he got it. He finished another cup of coffee, paid the lady with silver and gold, and promptly lit out for the sheriff’s office again.
As he made a bee line for the sheriff’s office he couldn’t help but think how friendly everyone was, and how damn cute all the women folk were. Must be the water, he thought! Must be! And he never even got her name!
Flyin' Jenny Dare
11-11-2005, 05:17 AM
It had been as pleasant an hour as any Jenny had ever spent, thanks in great part to the efficient hospitality of the hotel's owners; they had evidently been informed of the interview and had made Jenny and Miz Barb quite comfortable there in the cozy drawing room of Jenny's suite. Lemonade and other refreshments were served, and Jenny was most satisfied with the hotel and its staff. (She wondered if, perhaps, Miz Skye--and such a wonderful name that was!--did not seem somehow familiar.)
Jenny had been even more pleased with Miz Barb, the newspaperwoman; she proved to be of a forthright and honest manner, and though scrupulously polite, was an accomplished interviewer. Jenny had to stay on her toes to keep up with the lady's questions, but it did not take long for Jenny to disclose, among other things, her home state (Texas), marital status (never married), and true surname (Davis; 'Dare' was her stage name).
In addition to such relatively trivial information, Miz Barb had elicited information about the balloon itself, the Nike (lifted by hydrogen gas rather than hot air), the dangers of flight (wind, weather and hypoxia), and Jenny's opinions on the future of aeronautics (of inestimable military and meteorological vaue, and sure to be the fashionable mode of travel of the future, to supplant ocean liners and even trains).
On the specifics of her upcoming performance, Jenny was less forthcoming. "They must come and see for themselves," she said, her eyes sparkling with mischief. But she did let on that the show would include an appearance by her steed Helios, and end with a spectacular stunt "never before attempted." Of course, after the show Jenny would carry paying passengers on ascensions, on a limited basis.
"And now, if you will please indulge me, I have a question of my own." Jenny leaned forward a little. "I am given to understand that the town of Slick Rock has recently endured a tragedy of some sort."
"Yes. A great storm."
"Ah. A very terrible one, it must have been. It seems that there is a good deal of new construction going on."
"It will not be easily forgotten by anyone." Barb had no reason to disclose the details of that difficult time to a stranger such as Miss Dare.
"I am sorry to hear of it, but glad that the town seems to have come through it all." But Jenny's mind was not really on commiseration. She had been visited with an inspiration, and was instead thinking about what to tell Mr. Forrest, her crew--and most importantly, her seamstress.
11-11-2005, 08:55 AM
Duzy stretched, yawned and looked outside to a beautiful western sunrise. This was a sight she hardly ever saw after working the tables until late each night. All those days on the trail with her boys, killin' time playing cards, had paid off well for her and she usually slept late. She slipped out of bed, her long dark hair falling down in curls almost to her waist. She washed up quickly, having taken a long bath the night before to calm her mind. She was filled with anticipation in seeing Barb again, kicking back with a drink of tequila and catching up on what was going on. Barb had invited her to stay at her place until she found one and she was looking forward to spending some days with her dear friend, one she had foolishly almost lost over that deal with Toby.....ahh, that was the past and this was a new day. She did wonder how Angel Outlaw would react to seeing her again....they had formed a bond on the mountain that night when she had confessed all to her, not knowing she was an undercover Pinkerton Agent, of all things! The past again....Duzy looked into the mirror and into her brown eyes and felt content for the first time since that tragedy in the Carolina mountains had started her life of crime. She felt she had made up for that and couldn't contain her excitement about going home. "Home," Duzy said aloud, thinking how odd it was, being that Slick Rock had not been where she was born and she had only been there almost a year in her lifetime. She was happy not to be staying at Shaky and Skye's place this time....they had always been friendly to her, had helped her recover after that hit on her head, but there was just something about those two.....
"Enough about the past, Duzy, darn bad habit talking to yourself like this!" With that she starting preparing for the days ahead....
11-11-2005, 03:49 PM
As Goyuga passed the Front Office on her way to carry more items upstairs, she had a glimpse of Miz Skye, who has gripping a piece of paper to her bosom. Skye's face was as white as a sheet, and her expression of her face alternated between terror and consternation. Had the Telegraph mistress brought bad news?
11-11-2005, 09:08 PM
It was a bit after noon when Lady LaSalle finally opened her eyes. She stretched lazily in bed and brushed a stray red curl from her forhead. The air buzzed with the faint sound of the town folk below. Women doing their morning shopping and dragging their crying youngin's with them as they went, merchants hawking their wares as they strolled up and down the street carrying their baskets and cases full of goods, and others bartering and haggling over prices. That was what city life was like. She pushed back the heavy brocade coverlet on the bed and climbed out from the warm cocoon of the sheets like a cat waking up from a nap, stretching her arms and arching her back. Her long red velvet robe was draped over the small chair next to the bed, and as she walked over to it the ruffle and lace hem of her cotton nightgown dragged across the floor just slowly. She secured the robe and put it on, tieing the belt tightly about her middle as she strode over to the window to part the drapes. She was interrupted, however, by a knock at the door.
"Ma'am? Are you awake Ma'am? I have a telegraph for you---------from some place called Slick........"
The door opened and the Mayor's wife stood looking down at the small man carrying the tiny piece of yellow paper. His jaw almost hit the floor when he saw her. He never saw any other Mayor's wife look that luscious in the morning!
..................Rock......", he finally finished with a notable squeak in his voice.
"Slickrock? Are you sure?", she questioned.
"Yes, ma'am. Says so right c'here"
She took the message from the man and began to read it. But as she read it a puzzled and perplexed look ran across her face...........the message wasn't signed. She had left Slickrock after her beau, Slick, had been killed in a heated argument over his gambling practices in his new place. It devestated her, and she had to get away. She paid off the girls in the the Shooting Star Saloon and made her way back east......back home. She met a cowboy named Hangin' Dawg, fell in love, and he made her an honest woman. She never told Dawg of her colored past, or the fact that she was the madame of a famous brothel in the wild west. That was information that she didn't think he needed to know, and it was too painful for her to talk about. Dawg had made a good living as a ranch hand, and he invested what money he made wisely. He invested in Sam Colt's business, which turned out to be more lucritive than either one of them could have known. Soon they had more gold than Midas, and they moved to New Castle, Delaware where he bought her a big white house on The Strand. The townfolk there liked the way that Dawg handled himself and convinced him to run for public office. He won on his first attempt.
But who in the hell had tracked her down here? She hadn't kept in touch with anyone back there, even though she thought of Gypsy, Barb, and Duzy almost on a daily basis. Shoot, she even missed that dog-------what was his name? Winston! That was it! She laughed out loud at the thought of those big puppy dog eyes once more. She turned and retrieved her reticule off the table, pulled out 3 pennies, and tipped the man from the telegraph office.
She closed the door behind her as the man headed down the winding staircase that lead to the front door. That piece of paper brought back a whole lot of memories and feelings that she had thought were long since buried. Why in the heck did someone want her to come back to Slickrock, with no reason or explanation, and more importantly who was it that wanted her back there? She tossed the paper into the fireplace and watched it burn. She did not want to go back, it hurt too much and she would have too much explaining to do to Dawg.
Whoever it was that sent that message needed to give her a better reason why she needed to turn her life upside-down. And they needed to give her their name.
11-11-2005, 10:29 PM
Kid Sopris reached the steps of the Sheriffs office at about the same time as Sheriff Alone, returned leading a chestnut, with a body draped over the saddle. Sheriff Alone, spoke to Kid Sopris saying, “ Hey Kid, I got something here I think you need to take a look at”! The Kid walked over to the chestnut with Sheriff Alone and they both examined the facial features of the deceased man. Kid Sopris spoke first, “Why hell sheriff you just delivered one of the four desperados I have been searching for. This here is none other than ‘Chen Whet’. Heck he even looks smaller draped over the saddle”. Who did the Killing”?
Sheriff Alone related the story once again that Kid overheard in the Café. Kid asked the sheriff, “Was there anyone else with Chin, we he was killed?” Sheriff Alone responded in a most puzzling of ways, “You know, when I saw this guy lying on his knife, I was real concerned that someone else might be around, But the girls assured me that Chin here came into the sporting house all by himself this time! But he had been earlier with another guy earlier in the week. That guy matches the description pretty close to Jerky J, and all he had with him were two shinny 10-gauge shotguns. But he was pretty well behaved the girls said”. “Oh there is more thing, When I got to his horse he had about $100,0000.00 worth of them unsigned bills you should me, and the girls had about $20.00 worth amongst themselves. I brought them all in, Here’s the loose one and everything is still in the saddle bags as I found them.”
Kid asked the sheriff to see to the burial and paid for the burial costs, and asked the name and description of the Girl who delivered Chin in such a neat package. Sheriff smiled, and stated, “Why kid you ain’t thinkin’ about going down to the sporting house for a game of billiards are ya”? Kid Said, rather sternly, as he did not find the remark humorous at all. “No Sheriff! There is a $10,000.00 reward for his capture or proof of death, I want the right lady to get her money.” Sheriff said, $10,000.00 dollars, you never said anything about a reward earlier! Kid’s only response was, “You never asked, see to the burial will ya.”
Kid Sopris then headed off to the telegraph office to wire the president and to post the reward at the bank for the sporting lady. He thought along the way, where was the rest of the gang and the money? These four desperados have been some of the toughest to track down, as they seem to not travel together all the time.
Kid Sopris stopped by the bank first and introduced himself to the president of the bank. A very well endowed and strikingly beautiful woman, with long beautiful brown hair and eyes, and golden tanned complexion to make sun worshipers envious. She was tall too, standing about 5’9” and the grace and poise befitting a royal family, Kid subconsciously thought a queen or at the very least a princess. Her English was very proper with no slang or slurs, obviously a well-educated woman of prominence.
Kid removed his hat, and slicked down his hair, when greeting the banker and said, “Good Morning, I am,” But before he could finish she interrupted and said,” Kid Sopris, from the United States Secret Service, Yes I know.” “Good Morning I am Diamond Deb Goldvein, I am the president of the bank.” Well”, the Kid hesitated just for a second, “ I’m here to post the reward for the Lady that was responsible for the death of one of the men I have been tracking for several years now.” Diamond Deb Goldvein, Responded, “Yes I heard the story already, it’s just ghastly!” Kid continued, “There’s a $10,000.00 dollar reward for her and I want to have an account set up for, Now where did I put that name”, as he fumbled around looking for a slip of paper, “Ah here it is, for a Miss Aneida A. Love, a black Mississippi woman, do you know her”? Diamond Deb Goldvein assured the Kid that she did not know her, but knew of her, and saw her in town once in awhile to buy personal items at the general store.
Kid Sopris said he would wire the President of the United States and have the Mint send the money by special courier out of Denver. Concluding their brief business the Kid left the bank, thinking to himself, I have never seen more beautiful women in one town in his entire life of travels.
Kid Sopris found the telegraph office and spoke briefly to the telegrapher; “ I want to send a wire at once” He took pencil in hand and wrote out the following:
The White House
One of the members of the gang that I have been tracking “Chin Whet” as been properly disposed of. STOP Please have Denver mint send, by special courier under escort, The funds in the amount of $10,000.00 to the Slick Rock Bank to be deposited for the account of Miss Aneida A. Love. STOP One down, three to go. STOP
Your Humble Servant
The telegrapher said, “That will be 4 bits sir”. Kid handed the money to the Telegrapher and stated “Get it out at once will ya”, and quickly departed the building.
The telegrapher ran out of the building and said, “Mr. Sopris, there’s something I been meaning to tell you! I got a telegraph the other day that there are two feeler’s coming to town that was in involved in a big gunfight down in Galveston, with some banditos Could be you might want to talk to ‘em!
Kid Sopris, thanked the Telegrapher for the unsolicited information, and continued to go about is day.
Kid Sopris who had only been town just a little over 24 hours, was surprised as to how much progress has been made in all the improvements to the town from the day before.
Fresh paint was still being applied to the Hotel….Wait he thought, the guy at the hotel. Shaky D., something was familiar about his face but it wasn’t till he was walking across the town square that it hit him. Shaky D, looks like an ol’ Texas Ranger he once saw, years ago, after returning from a campaign defeating some renegade Indians. Could it be the same man, just maybe? And if it was, Could he fill in some missing information about the old Rangers he use to know like Corporal Bounty Hunter, Col. Shep, and a few others.
Well as time permits Kid will have to inquire. Meantime, He better find some new duds if he planned on attending the Big Party, that the town is all buzz about.
11-12-2005, 03:30 AM
Captain 'Cat' Morgan stood in the shadows of the ridge overlooking the town. His gray coat and hat blended in with the granite of the ridge behind him. The big cat on the ledge next to him was almost invisible, except for it's twitching tail. The tufts of it's ears tested the air for the slightest sound just as Morgan's eyes searched for the finest details of the town through his telescope. He was a long way in both miles and years from Kentucky, and even farther from North Carolina.
Born Cathurin James Morgan, he came of a good Carolina family and had been visiting his cousins in Lexington, Kentucky. When the Federal army made their pre-emptive strike into Kentucky early in the war he'd barely gotten out of Lexington, with John and his brother, ahead of Federal troops who tried to take them into "protective custody" to prevent their joining the Southern cause.
Cathurin tried to return to his family in NC but instead ended up in service to the Confederacy. First in Kentucky, then Tennessee and finally back in North Carolina, but still never quite making it home. Now here he was wandering the west, no longer even sure what he was searching for, but still here. Maybe it was time to try for home once more...
11-12-2005, 04:47 PM
Capt McClellan and Seth camped for the night after a long but uneventful journey...the next day by mid-day they would be in town.
Seth learned that Capt McClellan was in his heart a good ole boy - but had been educated by Catholic Nuns at private schools back in Virginny and got into an academy (Seth knew it was a school but wondered why the Capt used them fancy words).
The Capt learned that at least there were still about half the hired hands left at the Baronesses Ranch - capt McClellan hoped to find at least temporary work there as he would await his retirement decision. the USRCS was strapped for his kind due to so many either getting out or dieing in the war of Northern aggression and the rum and cigar war in the Gulf of Mexico. But capt Mac was pretty sure he would get his wishes.
Seth in hoping to keep the Baroness busy thought maybe just maybe - Capt Mac could be the cure for her twisted heart. Seth spoke very highly of her and hoped that the capt would meet her first.
So they bedded down for the night, after ensuring the horse were fed and secure and both dreamed about what lay inwaiting for them back in Slick Rock. Seth was hoping he'd be treated better for coming back with the horses and Capt Mac - Seth knew this man was different for his men on that day in Galveston - his men stood up and surrounded him as they fired at the banditos to ensure he was safe. He was amazed to see men do that for another man.
As far as Capt Mac was concerned - he knew that the Baroness would need help and if something more happened....that wouldn't be so bad either:)!!
Here is to tomorrow, Capt Mac said. Seth responded - To tomorrow - Capt'n I hope you will be as happy to get there as I am to get you there:)!!
11-13-2005, 10:53 AM
Kid Sopris headed over to the general store, to find some new duds, as most of his showed the signs of being on the trail for an extended time. He really needed a new hat, scarf, shirts, britches, both plain and fancy wool and a new jacket. So as he entered Slick Rock Mercantile, his eyes were wide opened to all the new styles and colors. The Victorian era has really changed women’s clothes as well.
A clerk came up to Kid and offered to be assistance. Kid Sopris, told the gentleman what his needs were, and was concerned that they be ready by Saturday in time for the ‘Big Party’. The clerk assured him they would be ready Friday. So Kid shopped for about an hour picking out some things he really needed and on a couple things he splurged a bit. One thing was this men’s cologne, he thought that maybe the ladies would like to smell something other than cow patties and dust, so he bought a bottle of “Old Spice”.
About this time the time the Telegraph Agent tracked the Kid down and, half out of breath, spoke,”Mr. Sopris, Sir, I just got this here telegram back from the White House thought you might want it right away”! Kid Sopris tipped the Agent and said thank you and opened the telegram.
Slick Rock, USA
Nice work! STOP Hadn’t heard from you in awhile STOP Was becoming concerned as to your safety STOP. Reward money had been sent via special courier as requested STOP
Special regiment of U.S. Cavalry escorting STOP Capt. Nellis in charge STOP
He also has remaining reward money with him for deposit at Slick Rock Bank STOP
You are only person that can sign for release of funds. STOP Capt. Nellis is assigned to you for as long as you need him STOP
A Very Appreciative President
Kid Sopris folded up the telegram and stuffed it his vest pocket and checked the time. It was 3:55 in the afternoon; he thought where had the day gone? He needed to get back to the bank to advise Diamond Deb Goldvein of the courier and the additional deposit and to insure that she had adequate security for such a cash deposit. If not he will keep the Captain and the escorts in town for a few days just to make sure there wouldn’t be any problems. But the bank is closed until tomorrow. Well, he thought it could wait.
11-13-2005, 04:48 PM
Ms Skye - oh Mrs Skye - called out Seth - we is here and I got me someone who needs a place to stay at least for tonight.
So this is Slick Rock - capt Mac said to hisself while he looked over the town.
He noted the wanted poster for Shaky J - the man he had shot himself in the gunbattle in Galveston.
Capt Mac told Seth to settle with Ms Skye - he needed to go to tellegram house, get a haircut and shave and go in to see the sheriff - the Shaky J poster could come down.
Seth protested, "but Capt I should introduce you to Ms Skye and others!"
Capt Mac - didn't even turn around as he noted a deputy taking down the Chen Wett poster - noting that that one road away from attempted heist of those two horses. Hey Deputy - "my name is capt McClellan and I need to..."
"Sir, welcome to Slick Rock, the Sheriff and a Secret Service Agent named Kid Sopris would like to chat with you about somethin happening in Galveston."
Capt Mac smiled looked at the young deputy and said - "lead on deputy I want to parlay with them as well."
So the deputy walked Capt Mac over to the sheriff's office, while Seth settled their affairs at the hotel and livery. The young deputy noting the roman short sword that Capt Mac wore on his back up high on a special rig asked - "hey there Cap'n doesn't that ornamental sword get in the way?"
"Son this is no ornament - it has seen it's share of killing when my pistols went dry on more than one occasion."
The deputy was shocked at that and since he did not know anymore of the capt's background he asked no more questions before coming to the door of the sheriff's office.
Then the deputy introduced the Capt to the sheriff......
11-13-2005, 05:07 PM
"Well Rufus, it looks like the whole town is getting dressed up for a party. This could be our chance to mix into the crowd and ease our way back into polite society without attracting too much notice. If we cut across country we can come up near the livery about time most folks will be inside at supper." Then with a wry grin, "I expect -you- can trade some mouse-catching for a nice, warm, and -free- bed in the hayloft."
Cat Morgan and Rufus slipped quietly back to where Two-Bit waited patiently just behind the ridge.
"Are you ready for some real oats for a change old boy?" Morgan asked. Two-Bit just rolled his eyes but hummed happily as Morgan scratched the spots on his rump before tightening the cinch and stepping into the saddle.
Two-Bit was a big black horse with a fistful of twentyfive-cent-piece sized white spots across his rump. He got these from being one-quarter Appaloosa on his mama's side. His disposition varied considerably depending on the person or critter he was associating with at the time. And he had an uncanny knack for judging the person and reacting accordingly. This made him a definite asset to Morgan for more than just transportation and companionship.
One of Cat Morgan's usually better (though some questioned that) predilections was to not only befriend, but to make a friend of most animals he spent any time around. There were actually a fair number of them who came in and out of his daily life, both wild and domestic, but only Rufus and Two-Bit stayed on full-time. He kept title to Two-Bit to avoid legal problems but didn't really consider him 'owned' or 'property'. They were -friends- and that was what mattered.
As Two-Bit and Morgan started down through the trees Rufus leaped to his accustomed spot on the extra piece of heavy saddle blanket over Morgan's bedroll. Here he had, when he wasn't out scouting on his own, a soft spot in the sun to catnap away the miles.
The heavyweight piece of saddle blanket was a necessity or the bedroll would not have lasted long under the grip of the scimitars at the end of each of Rufus' toes. From a distance Rufus looked like just an oddly marked gray tabby, albeit a mite on the large side. A closer view would reveal just how large for he normally weighed in at over twenty pounds and none if it (well, almost none of it) fat. While it was true that Rufus' mama was a sweet li'l gray tabby, he got his tufted ears, mottled markings and sheer size and strength from the itinerant bobcat that was his daddy. Daddy also contributed the scimitar-like claws, inch-plus fangs and voice. Luckily, his personality, if you got close enough to find out, was one of his mama's contributions.
The sun angled down from the heavens as the odd team, for that's what they each considered themselves a part of, eased their way down the mountainside and moved out across the flats towards the town. They kept mostly to cover when they could do so without being obvious about it but moved steadily on.
Near town they pulled up to look and listen for a few minutes, then went in through an alley to come out on the street near the livery. Cat Morgan rode right up to the big main door to take a quick glance inside before stepping down with Two-Bit between himself and the street. He loosened the saddle-girth before stepping inside to see the hostler.
Two-Bit gave a little shake to loosen Rufus', who had himself a good stretch before taking the hint and jumping down to follow Morgan into the barn.
11-13-2005, 09:15 PM
Well since Kid Sopris couldn’t get over to see Banker Goldvein, he walked over to the Sheriff’s Office, where upon entering he was introduced to Capt McClellan, who had just arrived from Galveston with some horses.
Sheriff Alone, Capt Mac and the Kid talked shortly about the trip, But the Kid cut right to the chase. “Capt Mac., I don’t want to sound rude but I need some information. I understand you had one hell of a gun battle down in Galveston just before you left. Do you recall any of the people that were identified?” Capt. Mac, responded while pushing his saber to one side, “Yeah, as a matter of fact I do. Myself and Seth, along with some others, who didn’t make it through the battle, had one tough battle. They were all desperados, Mexicans, Chinese and Blacks, some half-breeds, Indians and the such. But the Capt. Of the Ranger headquarters there in Galveston, quickly identified two of them. One was identified as “Swindler Swine”, a robust fellow of his late twenties, stocky cuss of half-breed decent, standing about 5’10” tall, gray eyes, greasy black hair worn in a ponytail, tied with a ”Pigs tail”, unshaven and sporting a Colt 1851 Navy revolver.
The second was a character identified as “Hung Wun Lo”, A Chinese fellow, short stature of a man, thin and olive complexion. No facial hairs except for a long skinny beard that hung from the center of his lower lip and black hair, and black coal eyes. He was dressed differently as he was wearing traditional Chinese linen, a little blood stained, and was sporting a Colt 1860 Army revolver with ‘NEW MEXICO STATE PRISON’, scratched into the but of the gun.”
Well with a wide grin on his face, Kid Sopris said, “Capt Mac, you and Seth are about to be rich men. You see there is a bounty/reward for those two at $10,000.00 each, and once I get the confirming telegram from the Galveston Ranger Headquarters’ I will make arrangements with you and Seth to pick up your reward money at the Bank.” Capt. Mac, couldn’t hardly believe his ears, “WHAT! That Ranger Capt. didn’t say anything about a reward” “Well”, Kid Sopris continued, “That’s because I was tracking them for the Government, and Sheriff Alone posted those wanted posters you no doubt saw, earlier in the day” Anyway, I got to get down to the telegraph office and get that wire out. Capt. Mac, Dinner is on me tonight” And with that, Kid Sopris headed out of the Sheriff Office and headed to the telegraph office.
11-13-2005, 10:09 PM
Kid....well dang sheriff he didn't let me tell him about Shaky J - he is dead too.
The Texas law let me keep one of his 10 guage guns - got it packed in my bedroll with letter from the lawmen.
The sheriff could not have been happier - so many bad men dead and all right before the party - what could be better.
Capt Mac asked the sheriff about Seth and his now dead father. He found out that Seth now had no one but the other ranch hands and worked for very little since he was brought on with his father.
Capt Mac was about to give Seth something that could change his life...he didn't need the money...his family left him an endowment and he had scraped money as an officer and with no wife or family his monetary affairs were well in order.
Sheriff do me a favor, if you see Agent Sopris again before me twll him not to tell Seth. When he tells me the money is ours - I got a big surprise for that boy!!
Now how about telling me where someone can get cleaned up for the big event - I got the owner of those horses to meet as well as other towns folk and want to put my best foot forward.
The sheriff told him where to go and a hour or so later Capt McClellan showed back up at the hotel all cleaned up with fresh shave, haircut and bath. As he walked in Seth saw him and introduced him to Mrs Skye and the Baroness....................
11-14-2005, 12:12 AM
The Arabians were magnificent, just as promised by his highness the Sheik of whatever country it was. Goldie didn't really care where they were from as long as the horses were the best of the best, and the price was right. While she couldn't buy her way into the Sheik's own stallion's bloodline, she was assured there beauties were the best this country had seen. She'd sold her ranch back in Lincoln and and moved all the cattle to a smaller place to buy them, and have them brought here. She'd have to slaughter most of them soon, to keep her afloat. She was as close to busted as she'd come in the years since she'd gotten married, but these creatures would change that. She was sure. She'd breed them. They were worth it. The stallion was full of fire, unbroken, and almost unapproachable by someone of fashion. Her high hat and feathers spooked him when she'd first had a look. She trembled slightly as she touched his long mane. Why ever did she worry about their glory being diminished? They were flawless and the air around them seemed positively charged.
She put her hat back on her head, ordered her boys to move them from Angel Outlaw's livery to the stables back on Gilded Ranch, and made her way over to the Silver Queen Hotel, to chat with Nevada Sky about the Homecoming party.
She quickly checked her reflection in the window before entering, and smoothed the skirts of her purple and gold striped dress. As she stepped through the doors, she was greeted by a new face with a strange accent. This young woman she had never seen before, took her parasol and fur and went to fetch her mistress. She looked after her suspiciously. She didn't like injuns. Never had. They weren't to be trusted. Too many times they had to be run off the ranch or shot back in New Mexico. They never actually harmed anyone or anthing, they were more just passing through, but the talk was that injuns stole ponies. The only thing in life she valued other than money was her horses, and she's kill anyone that threatened them.
"Mrs Mikulus, how kind of you to stop by," Ms Skye greeted.
"You'd better watch that girl," Goldie warned. "You might have some very unhappy patrons if she's left alone too long."
"I'm not worried. Giyuga's a very good girl. I have no doubts of her integrity. And I would appreciate you not questioning my judgement," Ms Skye said sternly.
Goldie was about to answer when a man and boy entered the hotel. The boy looked vaguely familiar, possible someone in her employment, but the man was a stranger. He wore navy clothes and a sword at his hip.
"Ms Skye, Ms Mikulus," The boy greeted. Nevada Skye nodded and smiled, but upon realizing there was no recognition from his mistress he said, "It's Seth. And this here is Cap'n McClellen. We done brought yer animals to ya."
"Yes, of course," Goldie replied. "Can I interest you boys in a drink across the street?"
11-14-2005, 09:52 AM
Ms Mikulus, Ms Skye, good afternoon...Capt Mac took the ladies hand and kissed their hands. Ms Mikulus it was the least I could do to help young Seth bring the horses back since his father and rest of your work party were killed.
I would be honored to escort you and Ms Skye over to have a drink so long as you allow me to procur the refreshments for both of you and Seth - he has seen enough to earn him a drink in these last two days regardless of his age.
Ms Skye it would be an honor for you to join us...if you can.
I just need to take off my swords - pls give me a minute to do so.
After a few moments - Capt Mcclellan reappeared - offered his arms to the ladies for a stroll across the street.
Seth just watched the officer with some amazement. Capt Mac had been all business that day of the gunfight and had been somewhat quiet on trip to Slick Rock - yet his demeanor quickly changed around the ladies and he wondered if the "academy" taught him to do all those fancy things that made the women smile and blush.
He thought......... "wow maybe I have found the key to making the Baroness happy, how can I get that Capt Mac to fall for her before he meets all the other Slick Rock ladies?"
Hey Seth you coming...Capt Mac's words got Seth out of his daydream and he followed along over to the Saloon.
11-14-2005, 02:08 PM
Nevada Skye liked the look of Capt. McClellan, and decided he was a gentleman. Normally, she would not have left her desk at noon, but with all the new help and her new Manager Cepa Books, and after that horrible surprise in the telegram, she decided she could use a break. Besides, just to see the look on Goldie's face, which told her in no uncertain terms not to come with them, how could she resist? There weren't many ladies in this town that Skye had met and took an instant dislike to, but Goldie was one of them. "Miss Books," Skye called as they left, "Please tell Mr. Shaky D I have gone over to the Saloon. I'll be back within the hour." With that she took the Captain's arm and smiled pleasantly at Goldie. With the two pretty blondes on his arms, the Captain was sure he was the luckiest man in Slick Rock at that moment. Not understanding women all that well, he was totally unaware of the undertones between the two women.
11-14-2005, 02:29 PM
Contrary to everyone’s belief, Jerky J. is still very much alive and dangerous. He has been seen several times at the Sporting Houses, located just outside of town. The wanted posters as seen here have been posted everywhere Sheriff Alone could paste them up.
ATTEMPTED MURDER OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
ROBBERY OF U.S. MINT TRAIN
Jerky is a lean cuss and is educated. He can read and write and knows his numbers. Jerky is reported to stand approximately 5’10” and weighs about 160 lbs. He has one green eye, and has lost his left eye in a prison fight down in Texas. WEARS PATCH OVER LEFT EYE. Because of his poor eyesight Jerky Is known to carry several sawed off 10 gauge shot guns for his weapons.Notify United States Secret Service
OR LOCAL SHERIFF JOUQUIN ALONE
11-15-2005, 12:09 AM
After the telegraph office, Kid Sopris headed back to the Hotel to change some clothes and get washed up for dinner. After all he promised a dinner to Capt Mac. and Seth. Upon finishing up and he headed down stairs. He ran into Shaky D., who was mumbling under his breath about the Little woman being over at the saloon. “No Place for a lady”, he shouted, thinking nobody was around. Kid spoke first, “Little house work got you down?” Shaky D. was in no mood for Kid Sopris humor, much less anyone else’s, so he let the comment pass without rebuttal. Kid responded, “Didn’t you use to be a Texas Ranger? I recognize you from some place and I think it was down in Texas many years ago! It was at this very moment that the telegraph agent busted in the hotel, Yelling, “Mr. Sopris! You got an answer from Galveston.” Kid tipped the telegrapher and opened the telegram.
Pursuant to your inquiry this date, the two Banditos that you inquired about are confirmed dead and positive Identification made STOP However, question regarding Jerky J, can not be confirmed, man with shotgun with “JJ” on stock had his face blown off by shotgun blast from shoot out STOP Don’t believe it’s man your looking for as this man was Black STOP
If you need any additional info, please inquire STOP
CAPT R.WEIN TROUBLE
Texas Rangers Hdqtrs
Before Shaky D. could respond to Kid Sopris Question, Kid was out the door headed to dinner and a meeting with Capt Mac.
Across the street Kid Sopris ran into Nevada Skye. She said, “Excuse Me, I like to introduce you to Goldie and Capt McClellan” Kid Sopris Tipped his hat to Goldie and shook Capt. Mac, hand saying, “We‘ve already met, In fact I owe the Capt. here a dinner. Would you ladies to join us? And Please Nevada Skye, send some one for your husband, he is welcomed also as I have some business with him as well.”
Kid Sopris, then Showed the telegram to Capt Mac.
11-15-2005, 10:57 PM
The Sheriff Joaquin Alone went to the Mayor’s office to see about arranging a special proclamation to celebrate the event.
However when encountering Mayor Knot, as seen in this picture taken for publicity purposes for the local newspaper, The Mayor's only response was, “ The Affairs of State take precedents over the Affairs of State”.
However the Mayor’s aide, Warren Peace,responded by stating, “My mind is a raging torrent, flooded with rivulets of thought cascading into a waterfall of creative alternatives”. Sheriff Alone stated, ”Damn, Warren you use your tongue prettier than a twenty dollar whore”.
11-16-2005, 10:08 AM
after Angel took care of her party duds she quietly headed back to the livery, good gracious there were alot of new people in town suddenly, good for business but new folks always seemed to bring trouble.
When she got to the livery a couple of strangers came in with two white hot headed horses, told her they were Arabians, and boy were they wild that one stallion was spitting flames pert near. Angel eyed that stallion and quietly walked close, held out her hand and waited on him to smell it, eventually he did and she took the lead rope and put him quietly in a stall, the other was easier to deal with but that stallion was one mighty fine looking animal, one Angel knew she must ride. The men told Angel a lady named Goldie would be coming for them soon, although Angel hoped not too soon, she wanted some time with the stallion.
As Angel looked in the other stalls she noticed a huge horse already in the stall, that must be the one owned by the lady that flyin lady she had heard about in town. Well, if that horse could fly so could pigs!
As Angel was looking out the doors and surveying the town she saw a big black horse with white spots, and a bobcat on its back? she wiped her eyes and took another look, I'll be damn, that's Cat Morgan........never thought I would see his hide again, I better keep my eye on him.
Angel's helper Pablo, came over and whispered some distrubing news to her, ma'am, there is a man in town, Kid Sopris, thought you might want to know he is with the secret service, thanks boy Angel said, now run along and get these animals some oats and water. A secret service man huh, well now I must get over and see what he is up to.
11-16-2005, 12:37 PM
The Saloon that sat across the street from the Hotel was not like any that Kid Sopris had come across before. There seemed to be two sections, and the one side had respectable looking men and women in it, having drinks that included tea, sasparrilla, lemonade and wines. No one seemed disturbed with ladies and gentlemen sitting at tables delicately drinking their drinks, and the men on the other side of the room at the long beautiful bar were quiet and seemed to be conducting business with each other. It was very genteel. You could also get a bite to eat from the kitchen, served by nicely dressed young ladies. "Well" though Sopris, "This will never catch on, respectable men and women in the same Saloon, behaving themselves. " People like to come to Saloons to mis behave, in his opinion. But it sure was pleasant, especially as he was not a drinking man himself.
Just then Shaky D came in, and spied his wife sitting with an unknown man and a woman he considered a tart, even if she did have money. "Why is Skye with her?" wondered Shaky, as he knew his wifes opinion of the woman. Skye saw Shaky, and waved him over. As Shaky approached, the gentlemen with the women stood up.
"Darling, I'd like to introduce you to Capt. Mcclennan. He just arrived with two wonderful horses for Miz Goldie here."
The two men shook hands and said their hellos. "Please sit down, Shaky" said the Capt.
As Shaky sat down, he looked at his wife and said "I hear you were back in our new stable, helping out. You know you don't have to do that anymore, it is no place for a lady, to be cleaning that place up"
Skye smiled back at Shaky, and said "I know, but I wasn't cleaning up, just brushing down that new mare you bought for me, you know I love getting to know Quick Starr, and she is learning to trust me. I leave all the real work to the hands!" Shaky looke somewhat mollified by her statement.
"May I buy you a drink, Shaky" asked the Captain. "Thank you, yes. I will have a glass of wine, if you don't mind. Been a busy day, with the news of those desperados near town. I would highly suggest you ladies don't go wandering about alone, and if you must, don't forget to bring your "Protectors"." Skye smiled, "You know I don't go anywhere without my little trusty derringer, and if I go out of town I'll take the Peacemaker with me!" At the Captains surprised look, Skye told him "You'll find that many of the ladies in this town go armed when needed, and believe me, we know how to use the weapons too".
"So, Miz Goldie, tell us all about those two wonderful looking horses you had delivered today. Do you plan on entering them in the race come Saturday?" asked Skye.
11-16-2005, 01:24 PM
Kid Sopris, Sat with Nevada Skye, Goldie, Shaky D, and the Capt, sipping on a cup of coffee. The conversation was light and friendly and everyone was getting along just fine. But he felt the tension between Skye and Goldie. Sopris finally got to talk with Shaky D, regarding his Ranger days. And as suspected both men new a lot of the ol’ timers and good times had by all.
Sheriff Alone, strolled into the bar and sitting room and was introduced by Nevada Skye to everyone. Sopris asked the Sheriff, ”Where you been, you look a bit perplexed.” “ Ah I went by the Mayors office to see about getting a special proclamation from him regarding our Celebration. Well, He had that dang gon redhead, he brought out from San Francisco, with him, and I swear he been in the sauce. And Warrens behavior wasn’t much better,” answered Sheriff Alone. Sopris urged him to have a seat, and offered him a cup of coffee, as he didn’t like lawmen drinking on the job.
Sopris really liked this town and all the people he has met so far and has had no reservations. He thought when he finished this assignment given to him by the president he just might retire. After all thirty-five years of service to the Government, is enough.
And he longed to settle down, find some one to share the sunrise and sunsets with. Have a few horses, do a little fishing and hunting. Slick Rock, even with its occasional misguided hard cases that drifted thru, were well handled by the Sheriff, and its citizens were determined able-bodied folk of strong character. Nevada Skye asked, “So Kid how long do you intend to stay here in our little community?” The question startled the Kid as he was daydreaming and watching the crowd. “I’m Sorry Mrs. Skye, I was thinking about that. I really don’t have an answer for you right now. But I do like Slick Rock and it’s citizens. If I can finish this here job I’m on, I may just retire here. I haven’t been anyplace better, and Lord knows I have been to a lot worse.”
“Say Capt. Where is Seth, the fellow that came out with you?” Asked Sopris.
11-16-2005, 05:43 PM
Men. The last thing in the world she needed was more men. And now, she was surrounded by them. Not to mention, she detested other women. The whole evening was wasting away. She wanted to see to her new animals before the day was over. The stallion needed to be ready to ride before racing.
She was not paying much attention to the small talk when she was addressed unexpectedly, "So, Miz Goldie, tell us all about those two wonderful looking horses you had delivered today. Do you plan on entering them in the race come Saturday?" asked Skye.
"Oh... Yes. The stallion, I do hope," she replied, finishing her brandy. "You know I never miss a race. He'll do well, to be sure."
Just then, a bloodied man came bursting in. "Madam! Madam! I'm so sorry!" He ran towards Goldie. "They been stolen, ma'am! Both of 'em! Some of the other 'uns too! We were gunned down by a pack of 'em, jus as we were comin' in! I ran like hell to find ya!"
She tried to rise from her chair, but the room was spinning, and getting darker until she remembered no more...
11-16-2005, 08:48 PM
Lady LaSalle was in her favorite position.........on top of the piano in the middle of her establishment. From this vantage point, she could see everything. She saw the girls leading the men upstairs to sport with them under the sheets, the men winning and loosing at the Faro tables, and the sorrow sacks trying to drown their troubles at the bar. She watched as Lolita wagered the men that she could out drink them with that fire water called Tequila. Nasty stuff! Shoot, there was even a worm in the bottle! She was wishing that Lizzie were hear to entertain everyone tonight.......the house take was always much larger when she did. As she tapped her fingers in rhythm to the music against the piano's wooden top she wondered if Gypsy had her new hat done yet. She wanted something glorious and so over the top for her new purple and gray walking outfit. It was sure to get all the old bitties wagging their tounges all over town! She laughed out loud causing the prisoners of her corset to bounce much to the delight of the men that stood around her. Thoughts of Barb entered her mind as she looked out the window towards the train station and the telegraph office. She was sure that Barb was in there hard at work with that giant dog at her feet and Sheriff Jim sitting on the desk sharing a cup of coffee with her. Duzy waltzed by the window waving to her as she made her way to the stables to check on her horses and to make sure that the Change Brothers were taking proper care of them. Lady LaSalle's attention was drawn to the saloon doors by a talk stranger. She couldn't make out his features, or at least the ones she was interested in, from where she was. She watched as he slowly walked over to the bar. Lady LaSalle whistled to a couple of the men close by to help her off the piano.....they were a little too enthusiastic to her liking as they groped while helping her down. One in particular got a little too fresh, even for her, when he grabbed a handful of her arse and gave it a squeeze. She repaid him by giving something of his a squeeze in return, and he fell in a heap on the floor with his knees drawn up to his chest. She sauntered over to the bar and stopped dead in her tracks as Slick turned around to face her. He was bleeding profusely from 3 gunshot wounds to his chest, and his face was ghostly white. He was grasping a piece of paper in his hands which he was holding it out to her and saying in a raspy voice "Come back to me........come back to meeee......."
Beth bolted upright in her bed, suddenly and thankfully awoke from the horrible dream. Her heart was racing and sweat was streaming from every pore in her body. She looked over at her husband. 'Thank gawd!', she said to herself. She hadn't woken him up. She climbed carefully out of their big bed and tiptoed across the floor over to her husbands desk. Their sat her target-----a silver tray with glasses and a decander filled with good Kentucky bourbon, her husband's favorite. The golden liquid becokend to her, and she poured herself a shot and downed it quickly. The golden liquid turned to red fire in her throat as she hoped that it would also burn away the image of Slick from her mind. Seeing him like that again.....................well, the first shot of liquor hadn't done the job so she poured herself a second one and drank it down just as quickly as the first. But nothing could erase the images in her mind. They were so real. She missed everyone terribly, and she missed the saloon even more. And she remembered that day when Slick died in her arms in the street in front of his saloon, The Red Lady. Tears began to well up in her eyes as she could still smell the gunpowder and blood that hung in the air that day. A popping noise from the burning logs in the fireplace caught her attention and she swore that she could still see that damnable telegraph note still burning. 'Now that is the alcohol playing tricks on your eyes', she thought to herself. She wiped her eyes with the sleeve of her nightgown and climbed back into bed. Dawg had kept it nice and warm for her, and she spooned up next to him. Beth was soon asleep again with the help of the bourbon and her husband's own warmth, but she was still dreaming and reliving her life in Slickrock, her life as a whore who worked her way up to become a Madame' and owner of a fine saloon, and her life with her first love who was so suddenly and violently ripped out of her life. Unbeknownst to her, she began to cry in her sleep.
11-16-2005, 09:48 PM
It was during the dinner, that the serene tranquil essence of the evening was suddenly and without warning interrupted with violence, which no one could predict. Not only was the incident with Goldie’s horses being stolen, Sopris looked up to see Jerky J strut in with his sawed off shotgun, carried over his shoulder. Sopris Stood suddenly, and drew both Colt SAA from their holsters, and yelled, ”JERKY J”. Jerky, in one fluid move swung around with Shotgun coming to rest in his hands, pulling back on the hammers, leveled his shotgun, all most prematurely, jerked on the triggers, the following roar of black powder and ounce and half of lead shot, instantly killed Mayor Knot, who had just walked in to the saloon with his girlfriend Ms. Kitt E. Litter and Warren Peace.
Kid Sopris ‘s reply with the 44 Colts instantly roared back as if attached to a machine, striking Jerky J, in the chest and head, from about 30 feet away, and the screams and bellowing from all in attendance was almost deafening to the roar of the guns.
When the smoke cleared and the hush of silence returned to the saloon, two men lay dead. Ms Kitt E. Litter, lie in shock, Warren Peace wetted his pants. Ladies at the table dining with Sopris sat frighten and gasping for air. Shaky D., the Sheriff and the Capt. All stood with pistols drawn as to denounce any other attempt and to quell any further disturbance of the tiny quiet hamlet.
Sheriff Alone and Kid Sopris strolled over to Jerky J, who lied in utter quiet, and death consuming the lifeless body, finally looked at one another and in relief Kid Sopris, then without hesitation took his Secret Service Badge threw it at the life less body, holstered his twins, and walked back to the dining area. Apologized to the ladies and to the Capt, and to the rest of the patrons, Tossed down two $20.00 dollar gold pieces and quietly walked from the saloon and headed back to the hotel.
11-17-2005, 01:16 AM
Morgan caught a glimpse of a lady leaving the livery through the office as he entered the big barn. The only one left was a little Mexican serving up the boarded horses' evening measure of grain and water. He looked over the other occupants of the place while he waited for the hostler to get free. The most obvious and easily the flashiest tenants were a beautiful pair of solid white Arabians. From the way they acted even when they were just being fed it appeared they were typical of the breed and would take some patience for anyone to get their confidence.
Even more interesting to Cat Morgan though was the big handsome horse across the way. Study as he might Morgan could not quite place the breed. "Guess I'm not quite as worldly as I thought!" he grumped to himself. "I suppose I'll just have to ask." Then he looked back over his shoulder and said, "Two-Bit. Are you going to behave yourself in here tonight? That one Arab is a stallion and this boy probably is too!"
Two-Bit glanced towards the stallions and snorted. He didn't show any sign of objecting to either horse's company, but wasn't particularly excited about them either. Now that Arab mare on the other hoof...
Finally the Mexican hostler came over to lead Two-Bit to a stall as far from the other two stallions as he could. Morgan paid him in advance for two nights' stay with grain twice a day and a chance for some exercise in the corral out back if he didn't get ridden that day.
It took a little more doing to get across the idea that Rufus was a peaceful soul and would actually work on the barn's mouse population in return for a nest in the hayloft.
"AIYEEE! El gato diablo grande!!" the hostler gasped, backing away as Rufus strolled out of the shadows to sit quietly next to Morgan.
Morgan smiled. "No, no diablo," he chuckled. "El es propio de angel. Es muy simpatico, pero un cazador muy bien!"
"El es un angel?" repeated the little Mexican with more confidence. Then he laughed too. "Tambien mi jefe!"
"Your boss is an angel too?" Morgan asked surprised. "Su jefe tambien es un angel?"
"Oh, si," replied the now grinning Mexican, "Pero 'Angel' es el nombre de ella!"
At that they both laughed together, but Morgan looked towards the office again with raised eyebrows as he remembered the shapely lady he'd seen leaving earlier.
A few more minutes of banter like this and Morgan had arranged a nest in the hayloft for himself as well. Then he left Rufus and Two-Bit to amuse themselves as he took a quick stroll around the town before getting himself a meal he hadn't cooked over a lonely campfire.
11-17-2005, 09:26 AM
As usualy Angel was quietly making her way around town by alley ways (alley cat!!!) she was half way around town when she heard Pablo screaming, damn mesican (no offense intended), I can't understand a word he's saying, as Angel made her way back toward the livery she saw a blur of white snorting, stampeding horses headed out of town leading them were a couple of men that looked quite familiar.... Angel let out a low whistle, and around the corner came her trusty steed, Pete, at a gallop, as he came by Angel jumped up on his back and they were off after the horse thief's, as she neared the edge of town she heard gun fire, damn I knew all these strangers in town would bring trouble, I reckon that secret service man can handle whatever is happening, I want those white horses back - they were stolen from MY stable.
11-17-2005, 09:31 AM
Duzy's eyes glinted in the sunlight as she started toward the stage office. Reaching down to open her parasol, she bumped into William Jamison, a detestable soul if she had ever met one...and she had met her share. He had arrived in Oak Ridge a couple months earlier and befriended some of the land owners who had suffered through the drout and had offered to help them. Well, help them he did, right out of their property! Duzy looked around and saw families leaving with everything they owned, some fighting tears and holding their children close. Some were going back east, others heading on west to try to start over. "Out of my way, you scoundrel," Duzy said, not even bothering to apologize for running into him! "Well, well, Miss Wales, are you always so disagreeable this early?" "That will make lines on that pretty face of yours," he said looking at her with leering eyes that traveled from her face down her body. "Only to snakes like you, Mr. Jamison." Sidestepping him, she moved on to the stage office to make sure everything had been delivered to her satisfaction. She had left her horse, Ole Devil, with Angel to take care of, thankful he had survived the storm, and was looking forward to riding him again. She knew Angel would exercise him daily and take good care of him.
After seeing that everything was taken care of and she had said her goodbyes, Duzy stepped onto the stage and stared in surprise to see Mr. Jamison sitting there! She sit as far from him as she could and hoped he would be getting off at the first stop. Damn, she mumbled quietly to herself, she sure hoped he wasn't headed for Slick Rock! She opened her latest Harper's Bazar trying to ignore him as she felt the stage coach start moving...
Mr. Jamison stared at Duzy, mentally taking the pins out of her dark hair and seeing it fall down her back. She was one fine looking woman, he thought as he undressed her in his mind, knowing her body would be firm and full in just the right places. He liked a fiesty woman, one he could tame, he smiled, as pictures of how he would do it entered his mind. When he bought out Slick Rock, he would be the largest land owner in the territory, and he would need a woman to share it with. "Where are you headed, Miss Wales," he asked. Watching as she continued to look at her book, he said, "sure hope your headed to Slick Rock, I have business there and maybe we can get to know each other better on this trip, seems I've made a bad first impression with you."
Duzy could feel her derringer against her leg and knew she had her knife handy too. Her '73 Winchester was propped beside her, in case there was any trouble along the way. She didn't say a word, but secretly she hoped he did make a move and she could put that slime away before he reached Slick Rock!
11-17-2005, 12:02 PM
For the first time in his life, Kid Sopris, felt relieved that his mission for the President of the United States ended with the most wanted of men all dead. For the first time in 35 years Kid Sopris got a full nights rest.
When Morning came Sopris was wondering if he could still live here in this town. How would the others view his actions?
He still had work to do. He dressed and shaved, and made ready to visit Banker Goldvein, and to wire the President, and to advise the President of his immediate retirement. A solemn Kid came down the stairs from his room to the lobby of the hotel, quietly exited without acknowledging anyone’s presence and headed to the telegraph office.
The Message to the President was as follows:
The White House
Mr. President, All wanted persons under this mission have now been accounted for and their cases adjudicated with extreme prejudice STOP All rewards now accounted for STOP Will meet with Capt. Nellis and escort STOP. Upon Capt Nellis dispatch I hereby tender my resignation from government service STOP It’s been a pleasure to serve you STOP Please arrange for retirement to be sent to Slick Rock Bank unless further advised STOP
Your Faithful Servant
Retired Secret Service Agent
Banker Goldvein was next; Kid Sopris setup the accounts for the reward for Capt. McClellan and Seth, which Seth still doesn’t know about. The $10,000.00 that was coming to the Kid for the demise of Jerky J. was split with the Kid, keeping only $5,000.00 and the remainder to be used in a trust to be held at the bank for widows and orphans from the tragedy that struck this peaceful and beautiful place. Kid was not very talkative, and in the back of his mind he hoped this was the last life he would have to end.
Kid Sopris then went to the livery, saddled his horse and wanted to go for a ride he needed to be alone with his thoughts and his conscious. Only God knew what lay in store for him now. Sheriff Alone Greeted the Kid, “Good Morning, We have some trouble. I picked this up for you last night, Thought you might want it. Some hard cases Mexicans came into town last night as you might remember and stole some horses and shot some folks, They took yours but it apparently it broke loose and was here this morning. I need your help, we didn’t try to track at night, but I have a small posse of men waiting. It’s my posse but I sure could use your tracking abilities. What say?” Sopris snatched the Badge from the Sheriff’s hand pinned on his vest. Adjusted his hat, and looked the Sheriff in the eye, and spoke, ”Well you gonna stand around all day and talk or ride?” With that the posse rode out of town looking for the horse thieves. With only the wildlife and the vistas of the mountains set before them, the posse rode hard on the tracks laid behind.
It wasn’t but four hours out that that the Posse came across Capt. Nellis and his men bringing the reward money to Slick Rock. Kid Sopris Gave Capt Nellis some direct orders to split his men, Send half with the Capt to the Bank in Slick Rock and Stand the guard. The rest were to accompany the posse on their quest. With over 30 men now the search began in earnest. Death was sure to follow.
11-17-2005, 12:38 PM
Duzy let her mind wander to Slick Rock and all her friends there. She couldn't contain her excitement over seeing Barb again. She wondered how she had fared after losing both Jim and Toby. Barb was always upbeat when she had written her, but you could never tell. Lady LaSalle had lost Slick....and now she had moved away. Duzy would miss her terribly. She thought of Angel and their unusual relationship....friends? She thought so, or Angel would never have let her leave, she was not a woman Duzy wanted as an enemy! She would see her as soon as she got there and check on Ole Devil. Hmmm, wonder who is running "The Red Lady," Duzy thought. She thought of Lizzie and Gypsy and was looking forward to seeing them again.
The coach came to a stop. It was time to have a bite and freshen up a little. She started in the way station and noticed a flyer posted about a female performer in Slick Rock. Now that would be interesting. She couldn't read much about it, someone had torn off part of the poster! Well, Slick Rock had always had more than it's share of exciting women!
Mr. Jamison had finally tired of trying to talk to her. She would have to warn the people of Slick Rock what kind of man he was. She couldn't allow him to try to take that land too. Then, she laughed out loud, thinking he had no idea what he would be up against when they finally arrived.
With that, they were on their way again. Soon she would see her friends.
11-17-2005, 06:26 PM
The sheriff asked Capt Mac to stay behind before going to get Kid Sopris. He needed a man with a cool, calm and collected disposition who could also dispatch justice when actually needed. Capt Mac relunctlantly agreed since he was still getting use to be in the saddle for long periods of time, he had not been in a saddle so long for years.
He had found Seth after the malay in the bar - the boy had been liquored up and walked out of the bar and then beaten to almost death - his pockets had been ripped apart (odd to see but definitely done intentionally). He kept uttering a phrase in Mexican but his jaw was wired shut by the local doctor sue to have his jaw broken in three parts.
Since he was staying in town he asked Ms Skye to go over the town layout and notables (good and bad) with him after the sheriff left and then had plans with Ms Mikulus to spend 2-3 days getting the lay of her land and business. He decided not to tell Seth about the money because he had a sneaking suspicion that someone had roughed him up because they thought he had collected reward money already. He would decide after his time with Ms Skye and Ms Mikulus of whom he could tell about what he was still going to do for Seth - at this point only the Sheriff and Kid Sopris knew of his plans.
He was glad that the townsfolk only knew him as a military officer, no one knew that his family back Virginny way were from Upperville, VA and he had been well known locally there as a daredevil cross country horse racer (where he got his nickname of Poney Racer) and was in with the fox hunting crowd too. The fact was he did not need money but due to working a farm as a youngster and raising horses and hunting dogs - Capt Mac had never developed the high brow attitude elitist attitude (His Catholic schooling and parents saw to that). He was sure he would be treated differently if people knew - so he decided not to be forth coming about it just yet.
Well he checked his watch and knew it was time to meet with Ms Skye, just to be careful, Capt Mac put back on his gun rig which held not only his pistols but his roman short sword. He had a feeling the town could go any way tonight - since everyone knew that the lawmen were out of town and only a few knew that Capt Mac had been sworn in to keep the peace...the sword had definitely saved his life a few times in the Carribean - won't hurt to caryy it now...
11-17-2005, 11:12 PM
Morning came none to early for Lady LaSalle. 'What a horrible night that was!' she thought as she seated herself at the table in the dining room. Sleep had eluded her for the most part, and what little sleep she did get was haunted by images and memories of a past that she had tried so desperately to put behind her. She poured herself a cup of steaming Earl Grey tea from the silver tea pot and watched as the steaming liquid effortless glided through the air and into the china cup perched on it's brother saucer. "This is exactly what I need. A quiet house, good strong cup of tea, ........and the latest Peterson's!", she giggled at the last phrase as she picked the magazine up. It must have come in the post this morning, and she was anxious to see the treasured pattern with it's pages and all of the new fashion engravings.
She sipped the tea as she read through the periodical, picking out articles of interest and laughing out loud at some of the humorous writings it contained. This was a much needed distraction for her from reliving last night's events in the bright light of the day. The poetry she could do without, however, and rolled her eyes at some of the titles. "A Creole Flower, Rest for the Weary, The Rainbow in the Glenn-------augh!", she groaned and cast her eyes to the Heavens vainfully wishing for God to give these poor saps some writing talent, or at least better subjects to write about. She oooh-ed and ahhhh-ed quietly to herself as she looked at the fashions engraved on the pages. Some of them she would just HAVE to have, like the striped dress with the asymetrical overskirt------there was no other choice. "OOOHHHH!!! A Figaro Jacket!", she exclaimed as she turned the page finally finding the pattern. It was a lovely jacket indeed, double breasted, made of satin-merveilleux and velvet, and finished in the front by revers.............how fashionable this would look, she thought as she imagined herself in the jacket walking down the brick streets of New Castle. She continued turning the pages and stopped cold when she came to an engraving of a young woman with long brown hair peaking out from behind a curtain.
It was titled "Laughing Eyes". How much like Gypsy the girl in the book was, she thought. The eyes, or the laughing.......she wasn't sure which it was that reminded her of her friend. Maybe, perhaps, it was both. She tucked the book under her arm and walked upstairs heading towards one of the many guest rooms. At one of the large oak doors halfway down the hallway, she stopped and looked in all directions to make sure none of the servants saw what she was doing. Her hands slid down to the waistband of her skirt to retrieve one of the chains suspended from her chatelaine that held a key. The key slid quietly into the lock and assisted by her deft fingers, turned within to unlock the bolt and allow her inside the room.
It really wasn't much to look at, but this room contained all of her possessions that she brought with her from Slick Rock. One of the vases from her room at the Shooting Star which was once filled with roses and sat on her dressing table now sat empty and alone on the small bedside table. Her lace white robe she wore every morning when she stepped outside on her balcony to survey her surroundings had now been made into vallences for the windows in the room. How fitting, she thought, and how ironic-----for it still sees outside every morning. She walked over to the steamer trunk under one of the windows and pulled it out from against the wall. With another key on her chatelaine, she opened the lock as well and slowly lifted the lid. The air was filled with a mixture of perfume, dust, and cedar-------the smell of time itself. If she closed her eyes, she could still hear the man at the piano playing her favorite songs while the customers laughed and carried on in the background. Sounds trapped in time, trapped in her mind.
Her hands alighted first on her red and black corset, well worn and molded to her body with some of the silk showing signs of wear. Then she came across her gold and black gown that she wore to Skye and Shakey D'd big party over at the hotel. What a night that was! As she recalled, she didn't have that dress on for long. Lady LaSalle smiled that devious smile that turned boys into men, and men into blundering idots trying to get her attention! And then she found what she was looking for. A tin type of Gypsy, Barb, Lizzie, Angel, Duzy, and herself right before the big storm hit. Gawd, she missed them! She grabbed the Peterson's from beneath her arm and with a quick turn of the pages she was right back at the "Laughing Eyes". After comparing the engraving to the picture, she laughed softly to herself because she was right, just as she always was. Gypsy looked exactly like the girl that was staring back at her off the page in the book. Was Gypsy and this girl one in the same? She wondered if she would ever get an answer to her question.
But there was another question that needed to be answered, and it was a big one. Why? Why now after all this time did someone want her back there? Why was is so important that she return? And why in the hell didn't they put a name on that damnable piece of paper that she burnt? And if she did for some insane notion return to Slick Rock, what in the world would she tell Dawg? For he would ask his own question, the same one the plagues her now----------------WHY!!!!!!!!!!!!
11-18-2005, 12:20 AM
Another hour ride and the Posse came across a caravan of folks headed to Slick Rock for the Celebration. One fellow identified himself as Professor Paper Cutt; He specializes in Origami, (Whatever that is). Next was a traveling French Dentist, Hurt NaMoore, and his sidekick Snake oil Salesman, Dr. Neil Down. Dr. Down has this Snake Oil he Calls “Rump, Guaranteed to get you off your arse”. A warning was issued to the caravan about the bandits, however Dr. Down said the men and horses we are looking for are only about an hour ahead of us, because of some wounded men and the horses seem to have a mind of their own.
The posse pushed on, real good men and determined on justice. Kid wondered what was happening in Slick Rock? He then chuckled to himself about the snake oil salesman; He just might get a dose of his own medicine if he messes with the ladies of Slick Rock! Angel Outlaw and Nevada Sky and Goldie don’t seem like they are easy pushovers! And he would like to see that cute waitress once again!
11-18-2005, 08:14 AM
Just as they were leaving the last way station before arriving in Slick Rock, Duzy heard a man say "Wait up, looks like I need a ride." He jumped in reminding Duzy of the Cherokee Indians doing tricks on their horses, when she was still a child living in the mountains of North Carolina, as he hopped the stage before it had even begun to stop. She caught her breath as she looked at the tall, lean man with medium length hair and deep brown eyes. "Sorry, my plans changed at the last minute, thanks for waiting," he said looking first at Duzy and then Mr. Jamison. "The name is Bennie Gantt," tipping his hat to Duzy and reaching out to shake Mr. Jamison's hand. "I'm Mr. William Jamison and this lady is -"Hello, Mr. Gantt," Duzy interrupted, and extended her hand, "I'm Anne Wales." Duzy could have sworn sparks flew as their hands touched and she felt a quiver go down her body. "Good God, Duzy, get yourself together," she thought as she realized he was still holding her hand and she looked up to see a mischevious smile on his face. More like a cocky grin, she thought and pulled her hand from his. He seated himself next to Duzy and across from Mr. Jamison. "You folks going to Slick Rock to see the show?" he asked. "Hadn't heard anything about a show; but, I have business there," Mr Jamison said, a smirk on his face. "Well, I heard there is a big celebration going on, a lady aeronaut, "Flyin' Jenny Dare, she's called going to be there, a social event, with dancin', drinkin', horse racing and partying." "Sounds like where I need to be right now." "That must have been what that flyer was about, what was left of it," Duzy thought, thinking this woud be an exciting homecoming. Wonder what else has changed since I left, she thought? She could swear she felt heat radiating from his body to hers and reached for her fan. She didn't know which was worse, the intense dislike of the man across from her or the feeling this man had ignited by the mere touch of his hand and that grin! The good thing was they were on the last leg of the trip and she would soon be in Slick Rock with her friends. She knew Barb would be waiting, but they had decided not to tell anyone else yet, wanting it to be a surprise.
Mr. Jamison was thinking this would be a good time to find out the easy marks, to mingle through the crowd and listen, then it struck him that Miss Anne Wales could be a problem if she run her mouth about his buy out of Oak Ridge. He would have to be sure that didn't happen!
Mr Gantt was quietly taking in the situation, noticing that Miss Wales didn't care for the dandy fellow seated across from him and wondered why. He couldn't explain it, but he felt like reaching out to protect her....no....he would never go through those kind of feelings again. He had just started to feel like living again....and a good party was what he needed. He had no idea that Duzy was well prepared to take care of herself and didn't want or need any man to protect her!
11-18-2005, 09:51 AM
Angel had the horse thief's in sight but was staying back so as they wouldn't see her, it wouldn't be hard to track them with the lousy shoeing job on thier horses but she wanted to see what she was up against. After a few hours they stopped and made camp near the river, they watered the horses then had some tequila, which must have made them brave because they started saddling the white stallion! Angel sat back and waited for the show. After about 30 minutes they had him saddled, hmm he must have been tired after 3 hours of running, three of them held him while one brave soul climbed aboard, they then led the horse into to water, well at least they have some sense thought Angel, when the three let go of the stallion all hell broke loose, that horse looked like a toy top spinning around, he squeeled, snorted, farted, reared, then took off running up the river, damndest sight I ever saw. The mexican wrapped his arms around the stallions neck and hollered like a girl, heck this has to be better than any flying horse show thought Angel.
As Angel watched that stallion run up the river like nothing she knew she must ride him in the race, first I have to get him back.
Angel waited until the mexican fell off, by then the others were so drunk they couldn't move, then gently she squeezed Petey's sides, Pete took off and went right through the mexican's camp, as they came to the fire Angel clucked in his ear and Petey jumped high over that fire amid squeals from the mexicans, as PEtey jumped that fire Angel remembered when she found the little stray foal, his hoof so bruised he he could barely walk and was left to die, who would have ever guessed he would turn into the horse he is today, flying over a fire with ease, as he swiftly landed Angel urged him to run faster, they caught up to the white stallion and Angel grabbed the lead line, by this time the white monster had quieted down some and followed them quietly, they turned and headed back into camp, the mexicans were passed out from all the tequila, Angel stopped the horses and untied the mexicans horses and grabbed the lead line of the other white horse and quickly un-hobbled him, as she was about to jump back on Petey, she had an evil thought, heck why not have a little fun.......
11-18-2005, 11:25 AM
While the mexicans slept, Angel tied all the men together by their ankles, using a knot that tightened as you pulled on it, it would take those guys quite a while to untie themselves and with their horses gone they might as well just drink the rest of the tequila. She also dumped all their guns in the river, except one fancy looking pistol which she shoved down the top of her boot.
Angel jumped on Petey and led those stallions back towards town, as she was riding in she passed Sheriff Alone and Kid, "hey fellas, those mexicans are sleeping off a drunk back there an hour or so, I tied them up so they wouldn't be gone when you came to get them." Sheriff Alone looked like he couldn't believe it and Kid, well ain't he never seen anyone riding bareback without a bridle? "You boys better get moving, they are going to be some angry men when they wake up and realize what happened." with that Angel clucked to the horses and took off.
11-18-2005, 12:11 PM
Well for sure the Kid and the Sheriff were a bit perplexed, and the remaining posse and escort, unit was the same. Kid and the Sheriff were also mad the Angel exposed herself to so much danger, but relieved she wasn’t hurt. It wasn’t long before the posse came up on the Mexicans, drunk, tired, tied up and OH…how their heads hurt. Sheriff alone found it amusing to shout all his commands in close proximity to the Mexicans. It was now Friday morning and they have a long trip back, Sheriff Asked the Kid to head back ahead with the Cav escort unit to finish up any details that he may have to do, he would bring the Mexicans in with the remaining posse, after all Mexicans afoot with a hangover can’t be too much trouble for 15 men.
Kid and the remaining Soldiers from the Escort team headed back to town and they didn’t let any grass grow under them horses either. About an hour outside of town they caught up with Angel Outlaw with the horses who was leisurely taken her time and the Stage coach with Duzy Wales, Bennie Gantt and a feller who Kid did not like right off the bat, he looked too familiar, William Jamison, and Jamison looked just a little nervous for the Kids liking.
As they rode along, stagecoach, horses, law and order it looked like a huge dust storm coming into town. William Jamison became more and more nervous about the looks and attention Kid Sopris gave him, and the Secret Service Badge didn’t make him feel any better.
As they approached the town many citizens started shouting and a celebration was clearly in their souls and in their minds. Angel Outlaw was a heroine for sure but it appeared to kid she didn’t take well to the publicity she was just glad she recovered all the horses trusted in her care; admirable quality the Kid thought!
Once back in town the Kid headed to the Bank. Capt. Nellis and his Security Unit met him there as well as Banker Goldvien. Kid made sure all was accounted for and made sure that Seth knew nothing about his reward, which was to be handled later.
Kid extended the invitation to the Capt. and his troop to stay over for the celebration and he would clear it with his commanding officer.
The Kid also headed to the general mercantile, to pick up his new clothes for the celebration and dance. While enroute to the mercantile he passed the telegraph office to check for messages. Sure enough there was one waiting for him from the President.
Retired Secret Service Agent
Kid Sopris, sorry to lose you, but you earned this retirement STOP. Your record will show service with full Honors and the Appreciation of the President and the American people STOP Your retirement pay will commence immediately at one pay grade higher STOP I will head your way next fall for elk hunt STOP “Bully for you” Stop
President Theodore Roosevelt
Telegraph in hand, the tired Kid picked up his clothes from the mercantile and declined any comment about the horses or Angel Outlaws escapades, he thought better for her to tell her story. She deserved it. The last anyone saw of the Kid this day was when Nevada Skye saw him heading upstairs to his room about 1pm.
11-18-2005, 12:54 PM
Duzy couldn't contain her laughter at Angel's antics...nothing had changed there...and she jumped from the stage to greet her. They gave each other a hug and were both talking at the same time when they noticed the men waiting for them. "I'll get back with you when we get into town!" Duzy said, not really caring if they held them up, but she couldn't wait to see Barb and the rest of her friends either! Mr. Gantt made it a point to help her back inside the stagecoach. Sure enough, there was Barb, standing with a huge smile on her face waiting for them as she knew she would be. There was so much going on that she hadn't really noticed anyone yet but Angel and Barb. Then, Gypsy came running, with that pretty smile of hers and the party had begun....
11-18-2005, 03:49 PM
Cat Morgan heard the livery's Mexican hostler yelling and then a scream and the shooting. He jumped off the bench where he'd been lounging, watching the street and ran toward the livery. As he got near he saw a bunch of men charge out of the barn with the white Arab's, along with other horses and Two-Bit in tow. Looked like they'd picked most of the best stock in residence to run off with.
It also looked like the hostler had wounded one bandit already as one was sitting kinda funny in his saddle. Cat pulled his gun but only managed to wound another bandit as they were crouched low and the led horses' heads were in the way of a safe shot. A woman on horseback whipped by him in pursuit of the bandits and that put a final stop to Cat's attempts, but the bandits were well out of pistol range by then anyway so he holstered and ran on to the barn.
At the barn Morgan found the hostler kneeling and leaning against a support timber, a bloody pitchfork beside him. He was holding a broken arm and had blood running down his face from a blow to his head.
Morgan found clean cloth in the horse medicine box and tied a pad onto the Mexican's head injury, then put his arm in a sling 'til he could walk him to the doctor. On the way he tried to piece the story together from the Mexican's broken and mumbled English and Spanish. Apparently the Mexican had been forking hay into the racks when the horse thieves came in and had managed to stick one in the side with his pitchfork before another bandit hit him over the head with his pistol. Then he must've drifted farther into a pain-induced delirium for he kept mumbling about devil's with claws and a horse with fangs saving him from worse by biting through the hand of the pitchforked outlaw as he tried to finish off Pablo for sticking him. It was this bandit who'd done the screaming that gave away the, up 'til then, fairly quiet robbery, and Pablo's arm was broken when a bandit's horse had smashed him against the support pole Morgan had found him slumped against.
At the doctor's Morgan supported Pablo and helped the nurse clean him up while the doctor examined and set the broken arm. The nurse cleaned the head wound and the doctor pronounced Pablo to be a hard-headed hostler after examining him for signs of skull damage and warning him to "take it easy" for a day or so and report back quickly if he felt any sudden dizziness or numbness.
Morgan was getting ready to walk Pablo home and they all watched as the posse finally got organized and galloped out of town. It does take a while to get a group of folks organized and deputized for something like that and the doctor asked Morgan, "Aren't you going with them?"
Cat shook his head and said, "No, 'my' horse is gone and there are no borrowable ones left in the livery in shape to keep up with a posse." "Besides, I'm not keen on being hanged for a horse-thief for just taking one either."
"But don't you want to help get your horse back?" asked the nurse curiously.
"Oh he'll be back," replied Morgan with a wink at her, "Either when the bandits get tired of his company or he gets bored with theirs." Then he tipped his hat and helped the injured hostler walk home.
Back at the livery stable Morgan found Rufus lying in the sun just inside the open door. "So where were you in all the excitement?" he asked.
Rufus opened his eyes, briefly, then closed them again and stretched out hard. Finally he deigned to sit up and just stared at Morgan for a moment, then looked away and up towards the hayloft.
"Not your job, huh?" Morgan sighed and looked down the street. "So how long do you think before he comes wandering back?"
Rufus looked down the street with Morgan for a moment, hesitantly pawing the ground a couple of times.
"That long? Hunh. He'll be back no later than tomorrow this time," stated Morgan confidently.
11-18-2005, 04:16 PM
"Okay what's all the ruckus and WHO's disturbing MY nap?" wondered Two-Bit as he woke up and looked over his stall door.
"Welllll isn't this interesting," he thought as he watched a bunch of strange humans pulling all the best horses out of their stalls. "Obviously not gentlemen! Well maybe one," he continued as one of the bandits opened his stall door for him.
"Thanks," said Two-Bit as he rushed out, knocking the man over with the door in the process. He had seen the Mexican who'd been so polite to him earlier get smashed on the head and another bandit, holding his bloody side, was about to shoot him where he lay.
Two-Bit reached out and bit down hard on this second bandit's gun-hand and heard a satisfying crunch and scream as his teeth met in the middle, then he tossed his head and threw the noisy bandit towards his own horse.
The bandits finally got their collective acts together and raced out of the stable with their prizes. Two-Bit joined the led horses as they charged down the street out of town. This could be a fun day after all...
11-18-2005, 04:36 PM
Servants and gardeners busied themselves about her, doing their daily chores and preparing for the remaining meals of the day. It wasn’t that long ago when she was doing the same chores, she thought to herself, but in a different place and a different time. Lady LaSalle sat on the veranda in one of the huge wicker rockers enjoying the mild breeze off the Delaware River. The salt from the water’s mist mingled with the humidity in the air and the fresh pine scent from the tall White Pine trees that surrounded her house. The crispness that the combination provided as she breathed in the wonderful aroma seemed to help her clear her head. She picked up the piece of embroidery that she been working on and resumed the satin stitching using the colorful fuchsia thread as she pondered the events of the last 2 days.
‘Ok, you need to think about this logically,’ she thought to herself as the needled glided in and out of the fabric trailing the pretty thread behind it. ‘Who knows where you are? You didn’t tell anyone what your destination was. Ok, so that leaves the question who would be able to find you? Who had the resources?’ She paused as she thought about this, staring off into the distance watching the sailboats on the water dance across the waves. ‘It probably wouldn’t be that difficult to find you,’ she continued on. Dawg’s run for the Governor was unprecedented, and was in all of the newspapers. Beth was sure that there were pictures of them both in at least 3 separate articles. Maybe someone had run across one of them. ‘Angel has resources. She was a Pinkerton, after all.’ But Beth doubted that Angel would initiate such a search on her own without good reason. Maybe someone else had engaged Angel’s employ and she was now working for him or her. ‘Possible’, she thought ‘but who would do that? Duzy? Lizzie? Barb? “And what is so damn fired important that I have to go back there?” she said aloud causing one of the gardeners to turn his head and give her a puzzled look. She smiled to him sweetly, nodded her head, and continued on. ‘Better keep these doings in your head to yourself or word will spread that you aren’t in your right mind! Of course there’s nothing that says you are now. You’re holding a conversation with yourself, for goodness sake, and you’re answering yourself!’ Beth laughed out loud at the thought, unable to contain the merriment that made against herself.
The gardener looked over to the house maid who was hanging up the whites on the clothes line. He gave her a puzzled look, and she just shrugged her shoulders at them-----then they both giggled, too.
11-18-2005, 06:18 PM
"We have a free horse!" exclaimed one of the bandits when he finally noticed Two-Bit following along in the small gathering without being led.
The leader looked around and smiled. "Jose will be pleased," he said, "That one bit his hand something terrible!"
"Maybe Jose will bite heem back!" laughed another bandit, and they galloped on without stopping to put a lead-rope on Two-Bit. After all, he was following along well enough on his own, wasn't he?
Jose was decidedly -not- pleased to see the big black horse following him. And he gradually became convinced the black really was following him because whenever he looked around, wherever in the group he rode, the big black horse was behind him and almost seemed to have a wicked smirk every time Jose looked. Once he even swore the horse winked at him. Of course he was laughed at when he made the mistake of saying something about it to anyone else.
The bandits were a bit over two hours out of town when Two-Bit moved up and bit through the rope on one of the fancy Arabs. It took two of the bandits an hour to recapture her and catch back up to the rest.
Jose moaned over his broken hand and kept his eye on Two-Bit, who waggled his ears innocently.
It was near sundown when the cinch on Miguel's saddle parted cleanly on one side. Interestingly it was on the same side that Two-Bit just happened to be running alongside of. Miguel bruised his tailbone when he landed, not to mention several other parts, and rode the rest of the way into camp on a folded saddle blanket and trying to hold his damaged saddle on his lap. He was the last one into camp.
In camp the bandits hobbled all the horses and set about making a cookfire. Just as they got it going good the cook looked up and discovered Two-Bit standing next to him with his leg cocked. "Hey!" he cried, "Horses can't do that!" Then he was gasping and yelling as a cloud of particuarly pungent steam erupted from the campfire.
The bandit leader yelled at everybody and particularly at the ones responsible for hobbling the horses.
"But we did hobble him!" protested his hapless victims.
"Well do it again and do it right this time!" he yelled back. "Now move the campfire to some dry ground, and use fresh wood so we can get rid of that stink!"
As one of the men led the placid Two-Bit he happened to pass near where Jose was sitting. Suddenly Jose was screaming something about his big toe and the whole camp was on it's feet again, guns drawn, looking for raiders.
Miguel came back grinning from rehobbling Two-Bit and said, "I teach thet horse a lesson. I leave heem weeth no grass, just dry ground and rocks to 'play' weeth."
Jose laughed wickedly, "Si, serves him right," he said, poking at the fire with a stick. "I grow tired of his company and would gladly shoot him if not for the money we get for him in Sonora."
A rock came flying through the air, just as the cook was serving up the hot frijoles and tortillas, and landed right in the frying pan, flipping it and all it's contents out of the cook's hand and onto Jose's lap.
"AAAIIIIIYYYEEEEEEEEEEE!!!" screamed Jose as he jumped up and burned his good hand trying to brush the hot, sticky bean juice off his pants. He tripped and fell twice before getting to the river to quench the fire in his loins, by jumping in.
Panic ensued in camp, again, at the unexpected screaming, at least until the rest of the bandit gang figured out what had happened. Then it turned to loud laughter and rude comments and suggestions for Jose.
The gang had been passing around bottles of tequila to celebrate their successful raid and imagining the cheap liquor and women they'd buy with the money from sale of the stolen horses. Not having eaten yet the tequila was hitting them fast and a couple of them fell into the river with Jose while laughing.
With supper delayed again they decided it was time to try riding the Gringos' fancy white horses. So, while three of the laughing bandits held his head, two more got a saddle onto the white stallion, then led him into the river where it'd be harder for him to fight.
Jose wasn't having any of this though. He was in a killing rage when he walked, burned and dripping wet, back into camp. "I keel thet horse!" he yelled at nobody in particular, glaring around and daring anyone to deny him. Then he tried to grab his gun with his broken hand. Jose screamed again, then cursed as he picked up the dropped gun with his remaining good hand and went looking for Two-Bit.
"Dammit! Don't shoot him in camp, you loco idiot!" yelled the boss. Even he wasn't gong to try to get in Jose's way in this mood. (He'd just cut the black horse's value out of Jose's share of the sale later.) "Take him out downstream where his carcass won't draw flies to camp."
Cursing, Jose turned on him, then reconsidered and stomped off to bring Two-Bit to retribution.
When he found Two-Bit, hobble-less again, Jose grabbed his bridle and dragged the mild-mannered, big, black horse with the white spots across his hips off downstream a good ways. There, on a small rocky bluff overlooking the river, he turned loose of Two-Bit's bridle and stepped back ten paces. At the count of ten he turned, drew his pistol from his belt and leveled it at Two-Bit's head. "Say your horsey prayers, diablo!" said Jose as he slowly and deliberately cocked his pistol.
Two-Bit stood perfectly still facing the river from the rocky bluff. At Jose's suggestion that he say his "horsey" prayers Two-Bit turned his head, looked directly at Jose ...and smiled.
The bandits who were still in camp instead of at the river with the fighting white stallion heard the string of "pows" from downstream and one commented, "Mon, thet Jose really hates thet horse to waste so many bullets on heem!"
"He is a much faster shooter than I ever guessed too!" replied another.
When Jose didn't come back and they finally went to look for him, they found his body completely charred from the waist up and all the cartridges in his belt exploded. There was no sign of any dead horse, and no tracks leading away from the rocks.
11-18-2005, 06:34 PM
After the excitement had died down a little and everyone wasn't talking at once, Angel pulled Duzy aside and told her she needed to talk to her. A chill went up Duzy's spine, thinking Angel wasn't going to let her past go...."Angel, I know you can turn me in..."Gosh, darn it woman let me talk, I know you was the one to start that nice orphanage for those little uns', and you ain't no outlaw now anyway...just a lot of stuff happened to you and you ain't doin it anymore. What I want is to talk to you about Lady LaSalle. That durn attorney of Slicks asked me to find her, and I did, but he wouldn't tell me why and I aint tellin him nuthin either. She is doin good Duzy, she is married to a mayor who is runnin for governor and seems happy. But, what if'n its somthin she needs to know? "Well, I think we should find out. I know we can trust Barb and Gypsy, so let's talk to them about it and see what they think." Duzy answered. "I have something to do right now, but I will meet you at Barb's place in about an hour, Gypsy is supposed to come over too and us knock back a couple 'o drinks and catch up." With that, Angel went back to check on the horses and Duzy started toward Barb's. Hell, there was one way to find out what was going on and outlaw or not, Duzy knew how to get in a place and out real quickly...so she turned and went toward the attorney's office. Duzy was out in a few minutes with Slick's file knowing they had to get it read and returned before he missed it. Duzy had the papers out reading them when Barb walked in. "What do you have there, Duzy?" "Something I shouldn't have, Barb, but you need to read this." Barb and Duzy had read the papers when Angel and Gypsy got there. They all gave Duzy that look that she shouldn't have broken in the office, but none were complaining about reading them, which Duzy thought was kind of amusing. Gosh, she had really missed these women! Angel wouldn't let Duzy go back without her going too, just to make sure she wasn't caught she had said. Sometimes it amazed Duzy just how fine a line there was when it came to being the law or an outlaw living in these times. With the papers safely back in the office, they both headed back to Barb's to discuss things and to do some more catching up.
11-18-2005, 07:18 PM
Duzy needed time to think. Barb was an upstanding citizen of Slick Rock, running the telegraph office, Gypsy was busy expanding her millinary shop into designing custom made corsets, ballgowns and hats. She had named it "The Gypsy's Needle," and it was going to be the best place in the territory to purchase those special items all the women wanted. Angel was an undercover Pinkerton Agent, managing the stables, so what was she to do? They had all decided that Lady LaSalle would want to know what Slick's attorney and Mr. Jamison was up to. If she didn't return to Slick Rock, Mr. Jamison had made a deal with the attorney to buy it out....just one of the many places he planned on "stealing." The attorney thought he had covered himself by hiring Angel, but he had already seen the pictures of Lady LaSalle and her husband in the papers. He didn't think there was a chance that she would return and he could make a big profit off "The Red Lady," by selling it to Jamison. "Well, that leaves you to talk to Lady LaSalle and find out what she wants to do, Duzy thought and headed to the stables to saddle up Ole Devil. She had been biting at the bit to see him anyway and she could use her old disguise as Frank so she wouldn't be noticed. If she rode all night, she could reach Lady LaSalle....but how was she going to explain her absence to the others?" She would just have to figure that one out later...
Duzy was delighted when Ole Devil recognized her and nuzzled her cheek, bringing back so many memories that it brought tears to her eyes. She quickly wiped them away and walked him to the outskirts of town. She then headed to the mountain to her old hideout to change into Frank's clothes.
When she emerged from the hideout, dressed as Frank, Duzy felt like she was being watched so she circled around until she felt more comfortable and then headed out to find Lady LaSalle.
11-18-2005, 08:25 PM
After she came to, she pushed away the smelling salts a bar maid was holding in front of her, and looked around. Her head was still spinning. 'I'm done for,' she thought. 'I'll have to sell everything. They're gone.'
"Just give me a moment," She said to those in her company. The Secret Service man was gone, and so were many of the patrons. Everyone seemed grim and shaken up. 'All this over some horse thieves?' she thought to herself. 'No, look at all that mess they're cleaning. Is that blood? Hot damn! What did I miss?'
"One of those wanted men showed up and Mr. Sopris shot him," The Capt answered. "Mt apollogies, ladies, I have some business to which I must attend." He made a slight bow and with that he was gone.
"I'm sorry," said Nevada Skye. "We need to getting back to the hotel."
And she was alone.
"My horses..." She never felt more like weeping.
Goldie stared at the wall for a few minutes, then at the poor women trying to clean up all the mess from the floorboards. Something in her steeled, like it always did in the face of disaster. She thought of all the other problems she'd overcome... The hunger she staved off through years of working on her hands and knees... then on her back, the years of abuse by men, the husband that wanted a son... She wasn't going back to that. She'd go to the devil first!
With new resolve, she stood and walked from the bar, dragging her train through the bloodieness into the dirt of the streets. She knew what she had to do. She would offer the white mare's first foal to whoever brought them back. It killed her to think of losing out on the money it would bring, but there would be no money if she didn't get them back, and she wasn't about to lose what she sacrificed so much for.
11-18-2005, 10:05 PM
As Beth headed to the market to buy some fresh corn to go with the evening's meal, she continued to think about the mysterious person who sent her that telegram. And she kept coming to the same conclusion each time----it had to be Angel. But why? And who in the hell hired her? And for that matter, why was she being so secretive about contacting her? All she had to do was telegraph her with her name, or write her a letter. Something big must be happening, or is about to happen. She had a sinking feeling in her stomach, hoping and praying that nothing was wrong with any of the friends that she had left behind. A glint of silver shining in the sunlight caught her eye, and she noticed a shiney new "Pinkerton Detective" badge pinned against the tit of a man walking out from the Town Hall. 'I wonder if he knows Angel?', she thought to herself. As she looked the man over (a whore's habit that she had never been able to break herself of) she figured he was a new recruit and doubted that he had been west of the Mississippi. The way he walked, well, he might as well as shout it from the roof top that he is a Pinkerton. A detective with experience would keep that fact well hidden unless they had good reason to do so otherwise.
The man was walking away, and she was admiring his departure when someone bumped up against her. "Oh! I'm so sorry! Elizabeth! How good to see you again!" Beth looked away from the attractive male rear view and found herself looking at her friend Vickie Prickett who was grinning from ear to ear. The bump was most apparently on purpose. "Victoria!", she exclaimed as Vickie rolled her eyes skyward "Imagine us meeting here!" It was a running gag between the two of them, for Beth hated to be called 'Elizabeth'. She knew that she had to go by her propper name in public, but in private if anyone called her that they would get a swift slap on the arse and a sharp pinch on the arm. "Trying to poison the vegetables in the cart?" "Ah yes, I do hate them but just because I don't enjoy the cursed things myself doesn't mean that I would ruin anyone else's enjoyment of them-----no matter how twisted their culinary tastes are." They both laughed, and Beth handed the merchant the coins for the corn and headed back to her home accompanied by Vickie.
"So I see this dinner party is still on for tonight. You know I hate going to these.", Vickie said with a deep furrow in her forhead. Vickie and her husband, Duane, were the first friends that she and Dawg had made when they came to New Castle. They found that they could count on them both for anything and everything. Dawg became to listen to Duane's council more about politics than his own advisors. And that's why Dawg made him a part of his cabinet. Beth and Vickie also became fast friends and found that they could count on each other as well, and tease each other mercilessly in the process. "Yes, but that dress I made for you is simply begging to be worn. It's perfect for you, and besides that you yourself say that I am............" "Yes, I know-I know. 'SHE WHO MUST BE OBEYED'. I should never have coined that phrase. It's coming back to haunt me". They laughed again as they both ascended the steps to the house.
Beth was trying to open the door, but the sack of vegetables impeeded her. "Here, let me try". Vickie attempted to open the door as well, but it appeared to be stuck despite all of her best efforts. She jiggled, and wiggled, and jerked, and pulled, and pushed but the door refused to budge. Beth laughed at the obvious frustration that the door was causing Vickie and said "Stop it! You're gonna shake the whole house apart, and the door will still be standing. You hold the bag, please, and let me try again. Sometimes with this humidity the door sticks and you have to get the knob to turn just right to open..........." Beth passed the bag to Vickie and in the process of doing so Vickie dropped her reticule. As Beth bent to pick it up, Vickie said in a nervous voice "Oh that's fine. Just leave it there. I'll get it, really. It's alright." "Honestly, it's just a reticule. I can get it for you." and she proceded to pluck it from it's landing spot on the marble step. She put it on top of the corn, then turning her attentions back to the door this time got it open. And as she turned around to get the bag from Vickie's arms, she saw something metallic on the ground not far from where the reticule landed. "What's this?", Beth said and she went to retrieve the shiney object. "Please.............let me explain..........." Vickie started to say, but stopped when she saw the expression on her friends face. One of confusion, anger, and mistrust. For in Lady LaSalle's hand was a Pinkerton Detective badge. A badge that belonged to Vickie.
11-18-2005, 10:14 PM
Things had happened so fast that proper learning of the town would have to wait for Capt Mac.
A few hours ahead of the posse returning a group of traveling salesmen and assorted rift raff had arrived in town for the big celebration. Capt Mac did not like people who didn't necessarily break the law but stole people's money all the same. He saw his crew members too many times taken by these folks - so he warned them he'd keep an eye on them and for them to mind their manners.
He went and got the sheriff and then went to hotel to get with Kid so they could talk.
He was concerned about this Jamison fella that had showed up - he was sure he had heard that name before during the rum and cigar war and he was not on the "right" side and with so many things happening the reason he wanted to get sheriff and Kid in one room was to discuss them staying on as deputies for awhile...at least through the big celebration - that way if'n anything happened they would be already empowered to handle it.
He got dressed in his evening uniform - he had two hidden compartments even in his dress uniform and put a small 32 pistol in one with his stilletto switchblade (a knife confiscated from drug dealer in columbia) in the other and went and got the sheriff. The sheriff liked his ideas about staying on and hoped Kid would be willing to agree.
On the way over to the hotel he paid a boy to tell Ms Mikulus that her horses were safe and that she need not post any reward for them - as he was sure he would do that if they were his horses.
So with the sheriff, Capt Mac went up the stairs and knocked on Kid's door to ask him about his idea, talk about this Jamison fella and then plan on timing of announcement for the boy, Seth, who was about to become well off.
Oh and after that he needed to see the woman they called Angel.... dang he couldn't remember her last name just yet - but he had the itch to race and wanted to see about a horse to ride for the race.
11-18-2005, 11:27 PM
Duzy hadn't gotten more than a few hundred feet until she remembered that she was headed to the wrong place....damn, she had lost it with everything that had gone on today! She had been thinking of the town where the newspaper office had been that she had seen Lady LaSalle's picture. Hell, Lady LaSalle was on the east coast! She thought it was time for some rest and headed back to the hideout. There, she removed Frank's clothes and changed back into hers. She decided it was time to get back to Barb's and reconsider her options!
She still couldn't shake the feeling that someone was watching her. "I'm just too tired to think or act right now without making a mistake, she thought, turning to see if she could see anyone." She didn't, but the feeling prevailed.
11-19-2005, 06:15 PM
After the last couple days, the kid’s nerves were on the ragged edge, and a sudden unexpected knock on the door drew a quick draw of the Colts and a firm reply, “COME IN”! The Capt and the Sheriff were not exactly used to staring down the business end of pistols, but relaxed after the Kid lowered the barrels and the hammers. “What’s up boy’s"? Asked the Kid.
Capt. And Sheriff Alone wanted to discuss Mr. Jamison and Seth with the Kid. Kid made two statements. “Capt., What you do with Seth and the money is up to you, the Government has no other interest. You Gentleman earned it. Mr. Jamison, as you call him is not Jamison, according to these U.S Government wanted posters. We don’t know his real name, but he is wanted in 4 territories for wired fraud, embezzlement, theft and corrupt land deals. The government would like to know his real name. And his accomplice; and the reason for being here. Sheriff, you can arrest him now, or wait till you find out who he is here to see, and arrest both of them”.
Sheriff Alone was now anxious to learn more. So was the Capt. But Kid, caution both of them not to show too much interest, or you might tip them off. “Also there is a Pinkerton Agent in town working as well. I don’t know who they are, but I have it on good authority from previous conversions with the President that they are real good and to cooperate with that person and any level I can.”
“Gentleman, I need to finish up this paperwork for the President and send it by courier with the Military escort”, I have tendered my resignation to the President. So if I can have a couple more hours I will join you for some coffee”, Kid Sopris said. Kid also let it be known that if the Sheriff needed any help he would be of service to him. “Sheriff, once last question, who is that cute redhead waitress over at that café”?
11-20-2005, 10:23 PM
The silence in the room between the two women was deafening. Lady LaSalle would not have believed it if anyone else had told her that Vickie was a Pinkerton agent. Not in a million years would she have believed them. But to see the actual badge for herself was a story altogether different. The tin badge felt cold in her hand, almost as cold as the emotion that was washing over her. She couldn’t even bring herself to look at Vickie, so she kept her back to her despite the numerous attempts that Vickie made to get in her line of sight.
“You have to understand. The political arena in New Castle was so corrupt. City officials were taking bribes, allowing criminals to go free. Judges dismissing cases before they were even heard. Then you and Dawg showed up, and he ran for office. He won on his first attempt! That’s unheard of for a new comer to this city! The powers that be felt sure that he was working for someone and was in on the take. My job was to infiltrate Dawg’s cabinet and to prove that he and the rest of the officials were dirty. I found no evidence that this was true. I reported my findings back, but my chief didn’t believe me. He told me that I just wasn’t a part of the inner circle and that’s why I kept missing the big fish. I became your friend because I had to, and then later it was because I wanted to. Don’t you think that I checked into your background?” Beth froze. She turned quickly to face Vickie and the accusation that she was about to make head on with a look of anger and rage on her face.
“How DARE you! HOW DARE YOU!!! You have NO idea, none at all! In all your research about me, I can guaran-damn-tee you that you don’t know everything about me!” Vickie’s friend Beth was gone, and in her place instead was a very threatening Lady LaSalle. A woman who was fighting for her life, protecting her past and her husband-----a woman enraged. “I know enough. I know about you being a whore and then a Madame’, the Shooting Star Saloon, and Slick. Yes, I know about him, too. But I haven’t told anyone, not even Duane, about your past. I was supposed to give this information to my superior to use as leverage against Dawg. But I never had to do it, because Dawg proved to everyone that he is on the level. He’s an honest politician, a true oxymoron. Then later, I realized that I would never tell anyone because you were now my FRIEND----and I could never hurt you! I would NEVER hurt you! I know that Dawg doesn’t know about your life in Slick Rock. If I were still an agent working on this case and not your friend, don’t you think that I would have told him by now?”
Lady LaSalle walked slowly towards Vickie and in a soft, low menacing voice said, “Get out of my house! Get out now, before I shoot you where you stand!” And with that she reached down to the waistband of her skirt and pulled out her pocket pistol. But before she could get her finger on the trigger, Vickie had pulled out a Derringer, apparently from thin air, and had the weapon aimed and ready to shoot. “You should know----------they don’t call me Quickdraw Pinkerton for nothing.”, Vickie said as she circled around Beth and backed away towards the door. “I’m leaving now, but I want you to think about what I told you. Think about it after the anger leaves you. Then we’ll talk. Duane will make a polite excuse for me to everyone for not being at dinner tonight. If you don’t contact me in two days, ……….” “You may be faster on the draw” Lady LaSalle said, “but I’m deadly accurate. Maybe more so than you. Are you willing to find out, or are you gonna leave me be?!” The steely look in Beth’s eyes told Vickie that she meant every word that she was saying and had better heed her warning.
“If I don’t hear from you in two days, I’m coming back. Your friendship means too much to me to loose it!” Beth listened as Vickie’s footsteps echoed her departure on the brick walk outside. The Pinkerton badge was still in her hand, and she had squeezed it so hard that she drove the pin into her palm. Only now that the warm trickle of blood was running down her arm and staining her dress did she realize it. Her anger and rage had dulled her senses against the pain. But if that was so, then why did she hurt so much inside?! She felt betrayed and violated, feelings that she hadn’t felt since Slick was killed. All of the turmoil over the past few days in combination with today’s events was too much for her to bear. She screamed as she through the badge against the wall then fell to a heap on the floor sobbing and bleeding on the rug.
11-20-2005, 10:35 PM
Kid Sopris finished his paper work and his soul searching, wondering if he made the right decision. Living out of saddlebags, cold coffee many a nights and having no real place to settle down. He missed his Colorado Mountains the Roaring Fork Valley, The Crystal River Valley, The Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Dark Canyon of Anthracite Creek where he was with John Plute, who shot the world’s largest elk. Fishing many of streams and rivers of those valleys. Many enjoyable summers spent in Aspen, Buena Vista, Leadville, and Cripple Creek. Fishing the Frying Pan River above the tiny hamlet of Basalt, Colorado.
Spending the Autumn months hunting Antelope near Farson Wyoming, and the Half Moon Lake of Big Pine Wyoming, and the wonderful hunting trips in Hogback region outside of Jackson, Wyoming and Flathead Lake of Montana, when the Flathead Indians were not on the warpath. Ah yes those were some good times.
Yet this new environment was sure inviting, people were pleasant and the town offered just about everything. After all he still could travel back to Colorado and do his hunting and fishing. He thought about all the people who may have never seen the sun come up over the Rockies, or seen stars at night at 13,000 feet, or fish swimming in creeks so clear you can actually watch the females lay their eggs.
But he was tired of the living in the saddle routine. A little room service would go a long way. But he is here for now to clear his head and get adjusted to this retirement life. Oh well, he thought it will have to wait, he’s hungry and he promised to have coffee with the Sheriff and Capt McClellan. Kid also had to reinforce the philosophy of leaving Mr. Jamison, (or whatever his real name is), alone until Jamison makes his move!
11-22-2005, 11:31 AM
Angel headed back into Slick Rock with the Arabians, once at the livery she put the horses in the stalls with some water and a little hay, waiting for them to cool off some before she gave them any grain, once she dismounted Petey he headed off to where ever it is he goes. Angel looked around the stable noting things were in a mess and wondering where Pablo was, she called out for him but he did not respond, dang boy, wonder where he headed off too. As Angel straightened up the stable she thought about Duzy and figured she better head out and see her, slipping through the alleyways, Angel worked her way around to the hotel and in the back door, nodding hello to the help, who were used to seeing her come and go in the back door, Angel began looking for Nevada Skye, as she came around the corner, she was met by Goldie, excuse me ma’am, said Angel, but I just got back into town with those horses of yourn, and I would like to know if’n you’d mind if I rode that stallion in the race? Goldie had a strange look on her face, she thought the Sheriff and Kid had went out after the horses, who was this woman and why did she come back with her horses? Remembering that she was going to offer the first born foal to the person who brought the horses back, Goldie smiled and thanked Angel and promised to think about her riding the stallion in the race, wondering if she knew what she would be getting in to. Your welcome ma’am, I don’t like nothing happenin to horses in my stable and I really despise horse thieves, Sheriff and Kid should be bringing those no good pond suckers back soon, you can press charges with the sheriff, I recommend a good ole hangin myself, well gotta be off, good day ma’am, and with that, Angel left to find Nevada and see what room Duzy was in. Heck, I just remembered that Ole Devil wasn’t in his stall, I didn’t see him with the thieves, Duzy must be out on him, hmmm I wonder if I should go out and check on her, heck that woman is capable of taking care of herself, I have seen that, I spose I better get back to the stable and find out where that blasted Pablo went off to.
11-22-2005, 05:15 PM
Never in her life had she felt so much gratitude towrds a member of her own sex. It was a strange feeling, she wasn't quite sure she liked it. It made her feel almost generous, which was also very strange to her. She walked away from Angel in a daze. She needed to clear her head. All these strange new sensations were bewildering.
She drove her buggy home pensive. Why not let the lady ride her stallion? She'd probably be better than her man, even if he was small. As she reached home she was greeted by her maid with a telegram from the Capt.
"Men..." She crumpled the telegram. "Rebecca, have this note sent to Angel Outlaw: I want to thank you (stop) I would be honored if you'd ride on Saturday(stop) I'll have your reward when the mare foals(stop) Regards"
The feelings washed over her again coupled with a new one... Respect.
11-23-2005, 03:09 AM
MMMRRRTTT?!? Okay, who's messing with my nap time now? I just hope they leave the horses alone this time. That was entirely too noisy. Hey! It's that human female that ran off about the time we arrived at this place. Wonder what she's doing back..? Wandering around, snooping like that you'd think she owns the place. Come to think of it, didn't the human male with the pitchfork tell The Captain (that's MY human, CAPTAIN 'Cat' Morgan) that his 'boss' was an angel? If The Captain's reactions to other humans is anything to judge by I'd say this one fits that description. Now if she just had a bowl of fresh cream or some nice bits of chicken in her hand she'd fit MY definition of "angel" to a "T"!
Hey! I wonder if she knows about that jar of cream in the cold spring house? Maybe I can talk her into getting some for me. I bet it'd improve my chances if I brought her something to show what a good job I'm doing of thinning the herd of mice in this barn! Ah.. Here's a good chunk of that last mouse I caught up here. Likely she won't care that the head's missing. I don't think humans like that part anyway. Now to just drop it out of the hayloft to a place where she'll notice it... oops. Mmmm, diplomatically speaking, that probably wasn't the best place to drop the mouse. I'm pretty sure she noticed it though...
11-23-2005, 08:39 AM
As Angel entered the stable she felt something hit her on the hat, she took it off and found a deheaded rat, what the..... she said, then looked up and saw the strangest animal looking at her with a smile on his face? dang alley cats, tho they do keep the mice and rats down, as this animal jumped down from the loft Angel realized it wasn't an alley cat it was much bigger, heck that is a bobcat wonder where he came from, he started rubbing up and down her legs and purring, well I reckon he is friendly, not being much of a cat lover Angel did reach down and stroke his head, after all, he was working on the mice. You thirsty boy? here I have just the thing for you, Angel took a bowl and went out back to Daisy, the dairy cow and squirted some milk into the bowl, here ya go, it's a little warm but it is fresh, she set the bowl down and started checking around for Pablo, not finding him anywhere she headed to the Sheriff's office to see what had been going on when she left town after the thieves.
11-23-2005, 11:20 AM
The Sheriff, Capt McClellan and the Kid were sitting around discussing the last 24 hours of activities. The sheriff told Kid Sopris that he had signed complaints from all the victims of the horse theft and those who were injured. Sheriff also stated that he understood about Mr. Jamison and assured the kid he wouldn’t move until he got word. It was about this time when Angel Outlaw stopped by looking for the Sheriff. All three stood up when she approached the table. Kid Sopris noticed she had cat hair on her legs, and he could smell fresh milk. Kid spoke to Angel first, “Good evening, you been milkin bobcats?” Angel shot him a look that would have froze hot bath water, but slowly smiled when thinking about the remark. She asked the Sheriff, “ What’s gonna happen to those Mexican hard cases you brought in Sheriff? Sheriff looked at the Kid and Capt. And said, “Well Angel, first they are going to be brought before the Judge and the charges read, we need to pick a jury and give them a fair trail, (the sheriff paused,) before they are found guilty and hanged by the neck until dead.” Kid Sopris, was always in favor of swift justice. “Why do you ask, Angel?” Angel never really gave a direct answered, but only said, “Just wonderin”.
Then the red hair waitress came by and freshen Kid Sopris coffee with a smile on her face that was as smooth as icing on a cake. After she left, Kid Sopris, Asked, “What’s her Name?” Angel piped in, "Why don’t you ask her, you don’t seem to have any trouble talking!” Kid Looked at Angel, and said, “Okay I deserve that!” The he smiled, he liked Angels direct and boldness. With that Angel said goodnight to the three men and left the café. All three men, then laughed at Angel’s remark
11-23-2005, 05:11 PM
Duzy had ridden Ole Devil for a while and decided to get back and get some rest. She was interested in this "Kid Sopris" whom had been wearing a Secret Service badge. and didn't seem to like Jamison any better than she did! He had made Jamison as nervous as a whore in church and that made her think he may be hiding more than just giving out loans that those poor people could pay off! She hadn't recognized him from any of her travels, but he was a handsome man, rugged and good looking at the same time. Maybe she should get to know him a little better and just see what he knew of Jamison.
She turned the corner and saw Mr. Gantt going into the bank. Her heart skipped a beat....she hadn't seen him since he had helped her off the stagecoach. What was it about him that made her body react the way it did? Was it that lean, hard body...the way the locks of his hair curled at the ends, making her want to run her fingers though them...those piercing brown eyes...his hands, calloused like he was used to hard work...she could almost feel them slowly carressing her body....damn it, she had to stop this!
While lost in her thoughts, Mr. Gantt had turned as he was entering the bank, feeling like he was being watched, and saw Miss Wales riding a large black horse and could have sworn she was looking at something on the seat of his pants. Could he have sit on something and gotten them dirty? He started to brush them off when she raised her eyes and met his. They stared for a few seconds, she smiled, nudged the horse and left without saying a word! "Darn woman," he thought, brushing his pants as he entered the bank.
Now, wonder where I can find Kid Sopris, Duzy thought, as she rode on through Slick Rock.
12-04-2005, 10:28 PM
Finally the big day arrived and what a festive time it was. Everybody was there and the celebration couldn’t have been better organized. The city fathers hired a group of ladies, known only as the “Carolina Belles” to assist in the big celebration. Their activities extended well into the advance planning and the shipping of necessary supplies to the freight depot. Freight master, “Fred Ex”, was wondering what could have been in all those boxes?
Beverages flowed from all over and someone even told Kid Sopris about a new drink called “Green Apple Martini”. No he didn’t try it but he took their word for it.
Besides the ladies wearing the finest of Victorian fashions and assisting others in getting dressed for the big occasion, they even planned a Masquerade Ball in the evening, with dining and dancing with the entire city in attendance, There must have been over 1,200 people attending and enjoying themselves like no other. And to spite all that liquor and festivities, there was not one single problem, not even from Mr. Jamison, who was carefully watched by the Kid and the Sheriff.
There were dance cards, with miniature masks glued on the cover and every person in attendance got a feathered mask to help the night of mystery and intrigued. New vendors, those passing thru this tiny hamlet and those considering setting up business here attended the party and even displayed the latest fashions and old standards.
The Kid in his new duds walked proudly amongst the crowds of people, each and every one extending their hands of friendship and gratitude in the apprehension and extinguishment of unwanted persons. There wasn’t a sad face in the crowd, except for those locked up in jail awaiting trial.
And yet by morning all of the town folks still had the smile worn on their faces and sadness in their heart, because as quickly as the party started it ended. But, not without new friendships, and a spirit of working together to make the annual event even better than the last. Thou Kid Sopris was hesitant to think it could be better, how could it? There were so many enjoying themselves that each had their own story to tell.
The newspaper promised to publish pictures in the next edition as soon as the tintypes were available for print. There was no denying the fact that the tiny hamlet was ready to party and it was felt deep inside their souls. But as the town regained their new found determination their also returned the reality, that work had to return to normal. There were still bandito’s in jail awaiting trial and jurors had to be appointed. The circuit Judge was due on the next stagecoach and the town had to be cleaned up from the previous nights activities.
12-08-2005, 05:16 PM
It was true....Shaky and Nevada Skye had thrown a great party, with the help of all the townspeople. But, there was more to come, the horse races, the woman with the flyin' machine and, like the Kid said, outlaws to be tried and judged. Everyone had their own thoughts about the party. For Duzy it had been more fun than she had even imagined. She and Barb had danced the night away with different gentlemen, once she had danced with Bennie Gantt and her heart still beat with the excitement from that dance! Duzy was a little worried about Angel Outlaw. She had seemed troubled after someone had handed her a note.
Duzy had talked to Mr. Sopris about Mr. Jamison. He had assured her that Jamison would not be making the same kind of problems in Slick Rock. Duzy didn't mention that he was in on trying to take "The Red Lady" from Lady LaSalle. She still needed to get in touch with her, and with that she turned and walked back toward Barb's house. They needed to talk.
12-09-2005, 12:13 PM
Even though the Ball it self was over, there was much more to be done the next day as the celebration continued on. The early morning found many people up and around, quickly cleaning up the streets and getting ready for the Horse Race of the Year, and the daring lady in her Flying Act. But the good citizens of Slick Rock were not the only ones stirring. Races meant money being passed around, and there were always those looking for a way to make all that money their own.
12-11-2005, 01:19 PM
yyYYAAAAWWWWWWWWNNNnnnnnnn..! What a night! Who knew humans could make -so- much noise without accomplishing anything? It sure did make for a lot of interesting smells to investigate though. Of course most of the things on the ground weren't worth a dog's attention, not that that stopped -them-. But there were plenty of open windows around, eh? And the things I saw! Heh-heh. That 'caviar' stuff was kinda gross (the things some humans will put in their mouths!) but I'll bet that young human at the restaurant is still wondering where the other half of her catfish went!
Well! Here's a nice sunny spot under the east side of this bush. Looks like a likely nest for my morning nap and a good place to keep an eye on the cafe in case something interesting gets tossed out. Yawnstretchcurlpurrrrzzzzzzzz..................... .............eh?
Great. Sounds like some dog coming down the boardwalk. Maybe it'll ignore me. Yeah, right. Wait a minute. Ears tracking... That slightly off-beat canter, the ticking of that missing claw... Why that's...
Hi Claude! Long time no smell. So this is where you're lolling around now?
What?!? Oh! Err.. Hi Ruf. Sorry! I didn't know it was you! When did you get into town?
Shucks Claude, I've been here for a few days now. Got here the day of the big horse thievin'. Have you met Two-Bit yet? He's got some good stories to tell about that!
Naaww, I've been out on a fishin' trip with my human. Just got back late last night. Did I miss anything good???
Well it was pretty exciting here, but only briefly. The real fun was apparently at the horse thieves' camp down by the river. I missed that part, bein' stuck here looking after other business, but Two-Bit was there and I wish I had been! Next time you're by the livery stop in and introduce yourself to that big, black horse with the white spots across his hips and get him to tell you about it. Just be sure and tell him I sent you and he won't kill you.
Gee thanks, Rufus. Hey! How come the streets are all trashed up? They have a hurrycane come through here or what? There's all kindsa really great treats just layin' around all over!
Yeah, I guess you missed the fiesta too. It was something! The whole town was in on it. Lasted a couple of days at least. No idea what it was about but it sure was entertaining, loud though. Too bad you weren't here. I coulda gotten some good stuff for you, before it'd been on the ground all night.
Dog-gone! Oh wait.. That was me. You know I love a party! I just wish my human wasn't such a hermit. I thought there was something fishy about that trip. I'll bet the whole thing was just an excuse to avoid the party. Sounds like I missed a whole week of excitement, dog-gonnit. Ooooohh... Oh well, you know anything I should keep an eye on now that I'm back?
As a matter of fact there is, Claude. I just remembered.. There was a human tom came in on the last stage who smelled 'wrong'. He's about as slicked-up and smooth talking a dandy as I've come across in a while but it all comes across as phony if you let your other senses look him over. I heard him sweet-talking some female on the stage but she wasn't havin' any of it. Later on I saw him sniff around another tom or two in the shadows but they ignored each other in public. Bein' a regular here you'll spot him pretty easy I'm sure.
This varmint's stayin' at the ho-tel I suppose?
Hmm? Oh.. Couldn't say, Claude. I didn't like him so I didn't bother keeping up with his whereabouts. Too many more interesting humans to check in on. Like the Milk Angel from the livery. Now there's a cat-woman if ever I met one!
Thanks Rufus. I'll keep my nose out. Uh-oh.. Dang, Rufus! Here comes my human's friend. Geez, don't let him ketch me talking to you like this! What'll he think? Jump up and run away or something! C'mon, please??
Sure Claude. Just give me a sec. to limber up... yawnsttrreeetttccchhhhshake... Okay, now give me a good barking at to get his attention.
Thanks Ruf! BBAARARARARARARAR!!!
Okay, back arched, HHIISSSSSS!!! Now.. alleeyyy-OOP! Eight feet straight up from a standing start, flip at the top, snag a tree limb and pull myself up. Perfect! A quick combing of the mussed fur, So long, Claude! then out that other branch, onto the shed roof and I'm outta sight.
Hey! There's that Angel from the livery out doing the morning milking! I wonder if I can talk her out of another bowl... She must be a real cat person to know how much nicer fresh, warm milk sits on the tummy than that cold stuff humans keep in the spring house. Hmmm... I don't have a mouse to trade her today. Maybe that blue bird over there.. Too late, gone. Oh well, I'll just ask nice...
"Mrrrtt?" curlaroundtheankles, now to sit patiently, tail curled just so around the toes and look her politely in the eye. Oh yeah... Purrpurrpurrpurrrrrrrr..!
12-11-2005, 01:27 PM
Former Captain 'Cat' Morgan opened his eyes to a bright morning with the scent of fresh hay in his nose, and sneezed.
"Fooh! Rufus, I appreciate your sharing your lodgings but I think it's time I found my own," he said to the ridiculously large gray cat sitting at the edge of the hayloft. Morgan checked his supply of money. "Hmmm. First I'd best find a source of spendable coin..."
With a quick look below first, Morgan rolled over and off the edge of the hayloft. He hung by his fingertips briefly then dropped silently to the floor. Rufus followed at a more leisurely pace by walking across a beam to drop to the roof of the small, corner office, then to the saddle rack and floor. He met Morgan at the door as the man finished brushing straw from his clothes and running a hand through his hair. "Probably have a better chance of finding any kind of a job, or even not getting run off the premises, if I cleaned up first," Morgan continued as if there'd been no pause. "I suppose you've already made your morning rounds? Okay, first off for me will be to find the barber and buy a bath!" And with this Cat Morgan headed off up the street, while Rufus curled up in the sun beside the open stable door.
Feeling much more presentable, and civilized, after a bath, a shave and with freshly brushed clothes Morgan went in search of breakfast and some income. He found the first at a cafe where a cute little red-haired girl served him his favorite fried taters with sausage and a little onion and peppers. That and a cup of hot tea, hard to find in the wilderness, had him feeling like a new man. Morgan soon had the waitress calling him 'Cat' and spent a wonderful half-hour flirting with her. In the end, as he pulled out some Yankee silver to pay her, the waitress told Cat she could get the cafe's owner to let him work for his meals if he wanted, at least for a while. Cat was quick to agree and spent the rest of the morning clearing the street, boardwalk and back 'yard' of the leavings from the town fiesta.
At noon Cat was back teasing the red-haired girl about her "secret agent" and watching her blush as he tucked into a plate of thick stew. Afterwards she put him to washing dishes and mopping floors. By suppertime he found himself peeling potatoes, chopping onions and firewood and generally making himself useful until near closing. He hadn't made a dime for himself, but he hoped he had generally built up some good will with the waitress and the various folks who worked at or came and went from the cafe. Now they could be more comfortable with Cat Morgan around and he felt more comfortable with the town.
Back at the livery that evening Morgan gave Two-Bit a rub-down while Rufus balanced on the stall door. "Boys, I didn't make any money but I hope I made some friends today. I also found out there's a Yankke Secret Service agent staying in town. After this much time I suppose chances are small that he's still chasing things from the war, or even North Carolina, but I havn't found out for sure what his business is yet. Seems he was after some outlaws but as far as I can tell that's finished business. I havn't a clue why he's still hanging around." "Tomorrow I'll go back to the cafe and work some more but I've gotten them pretty well caught up now and there won't be enough work for the whole day. After that I'll stop by the hotel and see about prices, or a rooming house maybe, then I'll ask around for paying work, even if it's only temporary."
Two-Bit only half listened to Morgan as he was more interested in day-dreaming about the fun he'd had with the horse thieves ....and wondering what he might get into next. Various passers-by had made mention of a horse race. That was something Two-Bit had never tried before. Of course, he'd have to figure away around Morgan's predictable objections...
12-12-2005, 08:24 PM
It had been a few days since the dinner party. The whole thing had been horrid. All of the guests could sense the uneasy atmosphere between herself and Duane. He had made a most sensible excuse for Vickie’s obvious absence, but Beth’s manner and mood that night told the partygoers’ that there was more to this story than was being told. Events at the Carson’s were normally gay and lasted all night. This one was more like a wake in Beth’s opinion. She even excused herself from her guests early citing a sour stomach from eating so much food, and retired to her room. Her stomach was churning, but not because of over indulgence or excessive consumption of that wonderful cherry cordial that cook had made. It was simply that she was hurt, and she would never have expected in a million years that Vickie would be the one she was hurt by.
Vickie did make good on her threat about coming back over to the house in 2 days. Beth made sure that she was never around, or just simply refused to answer the door if the servants were otherwise occupied. But she came back every day, she was like a bull dog and wouldn’t give up no matter what. And now it has been almost a week since their last meeting, and she was sure that Vickie would once again be pounding on her door before the day was through. As if by magic, there was pounding on the front door at that very moment. Beth parted the heavy lace curtains that hung in the library window and saw Vickie standing there, waiting for the door to be opened even though the possibility of that happening was about the same as hell freezing over. The pounding persisted. “I’m not going away! You better open this door, or so help me God I’m going to knock it down! Enough is enough! We have to talk about this, Beth!” And she pounded on the door even harder.
Beth allowed the curtains to slowly close, and she watched out the corner of her eye as McMillen, the butler, answered the door. “Ma’am. The mistress of the house does not wish to be disturbed. She is in deep spiritual thought and meditation………..” “I don’t give a damn if she’s conversing with the Almighty himself! You tell her that I’m not leaving until I speak to her. You tell her………..!” “That will be enough, McMillen. Let her in and show her to the Library.” That was the first time that Vickie had heard Beth’s voice in a week, and even though it wasn’t with the same friendly inflection that it normally held she was glad to hear it once again. McMillen lead Vickie into the Library and close the sliding pocket doors behind him as he exited, but only to press his ear against on the other side to listen to the delightful conversation that he was not supposed to be hearing.
“Beth, we need to talk. This bad blood between us must be washed away. It’s not doing either one of us any good. I’ve been sick with regret and grief ever since………….are you listening to me?”, Vickie said with a rather indignant look on her face. “You said that you weren’t going to leave until you speak to me. And so you are. You didn’t say that I had to listen to you, and I most certainly hope that you do not expect me to do so.”, Beth said in a voice devoid of emotions to the lace curtains, her back to Vickie. “STOP IT!”, Vickie yelled and moved lightening fast to Beth’s side. She grabbed her arm and forcibly swung her around to look at her in the face. Vickie gasped! It was almost as if Beth had smacked Vickie in the face, and would have probably been less painful. Vickie saw the raw pain and emotion in her friend’s eyes, and she knew full well that she had put it there. “If you want the use of your hand and fingers for the future, you will remove them from my arm immediately.” Her voice was icy cold and heartless, but Vickie knew that this was not an idle threat and she let her hand drop to her side. “What can I do or say to convince you that my intentions were honorable? Don’t you realize how much trouble I could get into for not reporting all of this information back to my superior? I’m putting myself in jeopardy with such a risk! But I didn’t do it……I didn’t say one word to him because you are my friend and you’re worth the risk!”
“You know that Dawg isn’t aware of my past, but yet it still haunts me. I thought that I had put it all behind me, but yet it hunts me down. And you are now a part of it. You want to win back my friendship? You can start by finding out who wants me back in Slickrock, who sent me a telegram last week……..who wants me to risk everything that I now have. I can’t promise you anything, Vickie. I can’t promise you that I will ever trust you completely again. I’m not sure that I believe you now. But if you can do this for me without Dawg discovering my past and not risking his job……..well, it’s a start.” Beth looked at Vickie and extended her hand. “Do we have an accord?” Vickie shook her friend’s hand. “We do. But you’ll need to tell me everything that happened in Slickrock. Let’s go somewhere private where we can speak of this. Your walls have ears.” Vickie pointed to the closed pocket doors, and the sounds footsteps making a hasty retreat!
12-14-2005, 09:21 AM
Duzy and Barb were enjoying the evening together, laughing and talking about whatever entered into their minds....mostly women things. They were planning different outfits to wear, kidding each other about who they would like to see while they were wearing them. They also talked about the past and how grateful they were that they had become friends again. They talked into the night....sharing thoughts about Lady LaSalle, Angel Outlaw and Gypsy. They wondered what Nathan was up to and if he and Angel were still fighting it out, remembering how she had almost made him ride into town without his pants that day! They had been getting along real good at the party and Angel looked beautiful in her new dress. Several of the townspeople had not even known that she was the same person that ran the stables. Then, she had been deliverd that note and neither Barb or Duzy had seen her after that! They talked about all the new folks in town and was looking forward to the horse races and watching "Flyin' Jenny Dare" do her "Queen of the Skies" act. The party had been a great success, thanks to Nevada Skye and Shaky...the Grand Ballroom had been filled to capacity! Everyone was celebrating the restoration of Slick Rock and remembering their friends that had not survived the storm. They both thought Miss Gilded Goldie Mikulus had been haughty and a little snobbish to the women, except to Angel who had retreived her arabian horse. Was she really going to let Angel race him?
Then their thoughts turned back to Lady LaSalle. They remembered their bold friend and missed her terribly. From everything they had discovered, she was happy and had put her past behind her. Duzy thought it best to let things go for awhile and Barb agreed. Barb and Duzy decided to make sure Mr. Jamison and Toby's attorney didn't take "The Red Lady" from her. They hadn't decided quite how yet, but they would come up with a plan....
It sure would be nice to see her again. Maybe they could take a trip back east and see their friend. She needed to know what was going on and they could just imagine how she would react! Lady LaSalle was not the type to let anyone take from her....she had been through too much to put up with such nonsense!
They decided to go to bed, so they could get up and watch the festivities that were coming.....
12-20-2005, 11:37 AM
Of course things never remain the same. By mid morning Kid Sopris had learned that the traveling French Dentist, Hurt NaMoore, and his sidekick Snake Oil Salesman, Dr. Neil Down, the Origami Professor Papear Cutt, Warren Peace and the “Red Headed Girl Friend”, Kitt E. Liter, of the Deceased Mayor Knot, All left town for San Francisco along with the two Silk Salesmen, the Tocks Brothers, Burt and Butt. There were some folks that the Kid hasn’t met yet, but they looked as though they just might stay.
It was a beautiful day in Slick Rock. The Kid noticed the Big ol’ Cat moseying around the front of the hotel. The cat had a unique expression like it knew something,. Funny the Kid thought, Who let the cat out of the bag. So Kid when into the hotel asked Shaky D for a large pan of milk, to which Shaky Dwas puzzled by, and the Kid walked back out on the Front porch, placed the pail of milk down by his side , sat in the chair , propped his feet on the railing and leaned back and watched the town get ready for the big Horse Race.
The Kid wasn’t a big horse race fan, was more interested in the endurance and perseverance of an animal then flat out speed. But he had other things on his mind as well. Like Jamison, whatever he’s up to, and the cute waitress over at the café.
Kid was interested in what Flyin Jenny Dare was going to do. After all there was a lot of promoting going around for that. He noticed Outlaw Angel in a bit of a hurry crossing about town. Duzy Wales was headed right toward Sopris, but he was lost in thought and gave it no concern, as he watched the Cat drink from the pail.
Capt Mac and Capt. Morgan were standing in front of the Saloon laughing, and appeared to be enjoying the day. The town was still in great spirits and the town didn’t even seemed to be bothered by the Banditos locked up in jail. The sheriff was carrying a platter of food for the Inmates meal from the café. Kid thought he might go over to the barber shop for a haircut and a shave. Well no sense to rushing into anything.
12-21-2005, 06:03 PM
Ruf! C'mon Rufus, wake up!
YAAAWWWWNNNNnnnn! What? Is it time for dinner already? SSTtrreeettttccchh... Oh, it's you. What're you so wound up about, Claude?
News Rufus! I was just down to the cathouse talking to Katlamity and...
Whoa! There's a calamity at the cathouse? That place is just for humans, Claude, regardless of what they call it. Why should I care? Or you even?
No, Rufus. Katlamity. She's this little calico cat and her -name- is Katlamity. I found her grocery shopping under the boardwalk. She's only about half-grown and just the cutest li'l ol' thing. I think she came in on the stage with that new seamstress and hasn't learned the town yet. Anyway...
Aww Claude. I was just gittin' settled in and comfortable with this town. Why'd you have to bring her in? You know calicos mess with my head! Especially "cute li'l ol' things". Oh well, sounds like she's messin' with your head already too. Remember, you're a -dawg- boy! Heh-heh. Anyway, what's she up to?
Well if'n -you'd- quit buttin' in I'd...
Oh all right. Katlamity was tellin' me she was goin' around with her human gittin' acquainted with the shop-folks in town and tryin' to see if there was room for her to make an honest living here. Whilest her human was talking in this one place Katlamity wandered out behind that hotel and came across some humans behind the woodshed. They were dressed too fancy for choppin' farwood so she went closer. She said they were planning something sneaky to do with that horse race the humans are planning. They also mentioned your Captain by name. You didn't used to be the type to hang out with folks involved in underhanded dealings so I figured you'd want to know.
You're right, Claude. I didn't and still don't hang out with the underhanded. I appreciate your telling me this, even though you did mess up my nap to do it. However, I've been with The Captain long enough to know he's not into underhanded dealings either, else I wouldn't still be with him. Incidentally he's "The" Captain not "my" captain. I take orders from no-one, officer or not. He is however "my" human. Now as to these ne'er-do-wells of yours. that could be important. If they're mentioning my.. cough... THE Captain by name that could mean they want to cause him trouble with whatever they're planning for the horse race. Let's us wander down there and see if we can't scratch up some more detailed intelligence on the matter.
Good, Rufus. I'm glad to hear you havn't changed since back then. As Head of Town Security I'd have to run you out, but as a friend I'd hate it.
Claude.. In good times you know I'm close to thirty pounds of pure terror in fur. I may be down a bit now from lean times roamin' the hills but still, you'd not have a prayer.
Possibly so I'll admit, Rufus, but it'd be my boundin' duty to try and I wouldn't enjoy it, win OR lose.
To tell you the truth, Claude, neither would I. Now let's wander down to the hotel and see what we can pick up.
12-23-2005, 09:17 AM
Duzy had turned to watch Angel Outlaw walking to the stables like she had a nest of bees after her...I wonder what she could be up to now..."oh please excuse me, Mr. Sopris, how clumsy of me"...Duzy almost stammered as she had ran directly into his chest knocking her reticule out of her hand. "No harm done, Miss Wales, he said as they both bent to pick up her and "ouch," then "damn" came out of her mouth as they hit each other in the head, knocking her hat askew. They looked at each other for a second and then both started laughing. It was a beautiful day, a great day for the races and Jenny Dare's performance. "Are you here for the festivities, Mr Sopris?" "Yes, and you?" "I wouldn't miss it for the world! Angel is an expert rider and I am looking forward to seeing her on that Arabian!" "And I have heard Miss Jenny Dare's show is not to be missed either!"
Just then, Duzy caught a glimpse of that sorry attorney Toby had hired and Mr. Sopris caught the look of disgust on her face. "Do you know him?" "I know of him and he is a snake just like Mr. Jamison." Duzy wasn't about to tell him she had broken into his office and found the file on "The Red Lady" but from instinct she trusted this man and said, "I think he and Jamison are in cahoots together and I don't like that one bit! Mr. Sopris didn't seem to be surprised, but he let the subject drop.
"Would you care for a nice cool drink before the race begins, Miss Wales? "That sounds lovely", Duzy said as they turned to walk into the cafe. A woman came for their order and Duzy noticed the way Mr. Sopris was looking at her. "She's very pretty, do you know her?" "Not yet", he said and let that subject drop too. Duzy was smiling to herself, wondering how a retired Secret Service Agent could become tongue tied with a pretty woman and then looked up to see Mr. Gantt sitting across the room. "Well, looks like I don't have much room to be judgin' anyone there, Duzy thought as their eyes locked and Duzy felt that warm feeling come over her again.....
12-23-2005, 03:50 PM
Well the Kid has always been just a little tongue tied around beautiful women, so not responding to too many questions is just natural for the Kid not to say too much. But he did notice the way Duzy, looked at Mr. Gantt, as she almost seemed in a trance at looking at Gantt. But she did appear to have more than one thing on her mind. The Kid and Duzy approached Mr. Gantt. Kid spoke. “Mr. Gant have you met Miss Duzy Wales ?” Mr. Gantt, Stood up and held out his hand. Kid thought Duzy was going to melt on the spot. Rufus the Cat seem to have followed The Kid and Miss Duzy into the Hotel, really unnoticed. Mr. Gantt invited the Kid and Miss Duzy to sit with him and share a cold drink. After sitting Mr. Gantt motioned for a couple of drinks, at this time Rufus rubbed up against Miss. Duzy’s legs and sent her screaming and jumping up from the table. Half out of breath and embarrassed she looked down to her feet only to be relieved that it was only Rufus. It took a few more moments for Miss Duzy to regain her composure. Mr. Gantt never lost focus of Miss Duzy.
12-23-2005, 04:43 PM
Duzy was still trying to compose herself ....why, right after almost knocking herself and Mr. Sopris down in the street, she had let a cat make her jump and scream! This was not like Duzy Wales at all...usually she could handle herself in any situation. Duzy motioned to the waitress and asked for a tequila, straight up, not caring what Mr. Sopris or Mr. Gantt might think, afterall it was still morning! What the heck, hadn't she heard somewhere that in order to drink all day, you needed to start early. She even thought the cat had given her a look like she was acting strangely! "Darn, what the devil is going to happen next," she thought as she let the amber liquid soothe her throat. She sat the shot glass down and looked up to see both men looking at her. "I sure hope the rest of the day is as exciting as it has started out", she said, smiling sweetly. Duzy was sure the cat rolled his eyes on that one and began to wonder if she was seeing things on top of everything else that had happened!
Mr. Gantt smiled back at Duzy as if he was trying to reassure her and she felt hot all of a sudden, like the sun had come out and was shining directly on her. "Would you like to go for a walk down by the stream, Miss Wales, it's awfully warm today and some fresh air would be nice?" Duzy could have hugged him on the spot for that suggestion and excusing herself, took his arm and started to bid Mr. Sopris a good day. As Mr. Sopris stood, the cat stepped between his legs, making him stumble and landed his bottomside on the cafe floor! Duzy was sure the cat winked at her as he strolled out the door. Mr. Sopris was quick to get back on his feet, laid down a gold coin for the pretty waitress, tipped his hat and walked out leaving Duzy and Mr. Gantt to go for their walk.
12-23-2005, 05:59 PM
Okay, Rufus. Here's the hotel and, ah, over there's the woodshed.
MmmmMrrrr... Good Claude, why don't you put that nose of yours to work while I have a look from up on the roof. Jumptofencepost. scratchscratchstreeetttcchhh. Jumptoshedroof.
Gotcha Rufus! sniffsniffsniff... sniffsniffsniff... sniffAA-CHOO!snufflesnuffle... sniffsniffsniff...
Hey Claude! Check over to your left and out about six paces, near that flutterby bush. Looks like some human-thing there.
You're right Rufus. Buncha footprints, paper trash and a piece of chewed cee-gar. Somebody's smell here I don't recognize but that stinky cee-gar thing reminds me of one town human who's always sittin' in his lair playing with papers.
You know where that lair is?
Sure! Take ya right to it through the back alley.
All right. Bring that paper scrap and let's go have a look there. Droptofence. Droptoground.
Drop the paper Claude.
Oh.. Sorry Ruf. Anyway, that's the cee-gar human's lair right there with the open window. What'd ya want with this paper?
See those markings on it Claude? That's a map! Or part of one. Now let's see what's laying around in that lair to go with it...
Wait Rufus! Someone's comin'!
I see 'em, Claude. See if you can delay them a few seconds while I get in through the window and hide.
Right. I'll go see if I can get petted, ..or trip him! galoomph.. galoomph.. galoomph.. wagwagwag..!
Okay, quietly now.. Up to the windowsill. Yipe! Somebody's already in here! Wait.. Mmrrrr? Huh.. He's hidin' too, and watching out the front window. Good, I can slip in onto this bookshelf behind the coatrack. Oops, there's a 'yelp' from Claude. Reckon he didn't get his petting. Heh-heh.
Interesting.. I've not seen this human around town yet. Rough clothes, smells like chili peppers and beans, and horses. Not just one horse like one he rides every day, but a bunch of different horse scents. He's armed too!
Here's the other human dressed kinda fancy. No lights. Enough windowlight for even humans to see, but still.. Oh this is cute.. They've got some kinda deal to fix the horse race! Funny all three of these guys didn't meet together. I wonder if the other human behind the hotel knows about this one..
All right, chili smeller's leaving, through a back door. What's fancy dressing cigar human writing on that paper. I have got to get The Captain to teach me how to read! Good.. Fancy-dresser's finishing up. Annnndd leaving.
Okay li'l ol' piece of paper, you're coming with me. I may not be able to read but I know who can. Uh-oh.. Window's shut now!
Hey Claude! Clauudde!!
Rufus! What's wrong??
Oh. Uh.. Nothing I can't handle Claude. Window got shut on me. Luckily there's no latch. I'll get my claws under it and you stand up on yore hind laigs and stick your nose under and help me lift it. Good! Now you just hold it and I'll squeeze under... Ow! That thing's heavy. Scraped my back good there. WHOA! Hold it up! Hold it up! Dang it Claude I like my tail full length! Now it's gonna take five minutes of licking to get my fur back in shape.
Sorry Rufus! That window was squeezin' my breathin' tubes shut! Here, I'll help you lick..
Geez no Claude! You'll get me all slimey. Splppt.. Splppt.. Thanks for the offer though. Anyway I got us another piece of paper with human scratchin's on it.
So what'd you find out, Rufus?
Not real sure actually. Cigar-human met another human in the lair. A different guy from the second one behind the hotel. Somehow they're going to mess up the horse-race, but I can't figure if they're trying to fix the race or trying to steal those fancy white horses again. Or both! I think cigar-human may have a different deal cooked up with each of these other two humans!
Are we going to do something about it? Or should we even? After all, this is human stuff, not really our concern.
Good point. However, your friend Katlamity may have been right about something else too. I think they're somehow either going to try to rope The Captain in on this, or pin it on him. Not sure which, but either way that makes it at least -my- business to get involved.
Awww c'mon Rufus. You know I wanta help too! What have you got in mind to do? Huh?
Thanks Claude. I knew I could count on you. Just didn't want to put you on the spot by askin'. Anyway, no idea of a plan yet. Unless you have something? Well, I know where to make a start.
No plans here, Ruf. I'm a straight at 'em kinda guy. But I've got contacts around town to work with once we come up with something.
Good! What we'll do right now is; you go see where The Captain is, then go let Two-Bit know what we've found out. He'll love it. Ol' Two-Bit is heck on rustlers and horse thieves!
In the mean time I'm going to go visit that Secret Service agent that's in town. The Captain's just a bit concerned about him and this will give me a chance to see how he reacts. Hopefully whatever's on this paper will tend to keep him off The Captain instead of pointing towards him. Besides, I owe him for a bowl of milk. I don't know but this may turn out to be a good town for cats. First there was the Barn Angel with fresh, warm milk straight from the cow, now this lawman. Now, let's get moving!
Right Rufus. Hey! Your Secret Service guy was a-settin' on the boardwalk over by the cafe when we came here from the hotel. You might look there first. Bye!
Bye Claude! I'm on my way....
Ah! There's Mr. Secret Service Milk Pan now, talking to that female I saw get off the stage. She's the one who wouldn't have anything to do with that other human from the stage. Hey! They're gonig into the cafe! Maybe I can get something more filling than just milk this time... I think I feel a purr coming on.
There they are, just sitting down at that other human's table. Wonder if he's a cat guy? Think I'll test the lady first. One good rub about her ankles and... WHOA! O-kaaayy.. Mark this one down as -not- a cat-person. Great reflexes though. Heh-heh. Have to remember that for later. Mmrrrrrr...
Now Mr. Secret Service Agent, let's see what you're made of. WHOMP! Lap-test. Hmmm.. Not too much padding, but not bad either. But that's not really the point of this exercise. I'll just drop these papers in his lap, then cas-u-allly check the table-top for edibles. Pooh. Just drinking, and not milk either. Might as well get down and play polite society kitty. Mission accomplished anyway; slipped him the papers with no-one the wiser. Now to see if he's sharp enough to do something with them. No-no dipstick. Can't you see those two don't need your help to take a walk? Bye lady! See? I'm not -all- bad. Purrrrrr..
12-24-2005, 10:26 PM
Recovering from his fall, he retrieved the crumpled note left behind by Rufus, at which time the Telegraph agent brought a new telegram from the President. The Telegram which read:
(Retired) Secret Service Agent
Kid Sopris STOP Return to Washington, DC at once STOP
President Theodore Roosevelt
After reading the telegram The Kid sealed the crumbled note he retrieved from Rufus, and directed the Telegraph agent to take it to Sheriff Alone, at once. Kid then hurried up the stairs to his room packed his belongings. He paid Nevada Sky and Shaky D, additional some of money for the extra care that they showed, and headed to the stable to retrieve his horse. Kid Sopris spoke to no one as he left East bound over the ridge towards his intended destination
What was the urgency and why the sudden telegram?
12-28-2005, 01:13 PM
Capt Mac was told by the telegram man that kid Sopris had to leave town urgently and said no more.
Due to sudden departure and the fact that Kid Sopris was heading East - Capt mac was sure something had happened back east - but knew the Gov't enough not to bother to ask.
He too was waiting for his telegram that would decide whether he could retire or not.
But he was waiting another with abaited breath - his family was sending him from Virginia his trusty steeple chase/mountain pony - Duke - and Duke should be coming in on next train in time for big race.
His parents also sent him his riding clothes, saddle and all the tack needed. They included as requested his aussie saddle - Capt Mac was looking forward to that comfortable aussie saddle.
As he walked towards the train station he decided he would go to the livery first to make sure he could keep his horse there and pay in advance for a few months. Afterwards he would check up on the Ms Goldie and see how that boy was coming along.
12-31-2005, 02:41 PM
Duzy was enjoying her stroll with Mr. Gantt. He seemed the perfect gentleman, giving her his arm as they crossed the dusty road and walking on the outside down the walkway as they headed toward the creek. He was gentle and quiet, but Duzy sensed he could be deadly in a heartbeat....always keeping his eyes open and knowing who and what was around him. She didn't know anything about him, wondered if he was attached to anyone, possibly even married and just passing though and wanting someone to pass the time with while he was in Slick Rock. Oh, how that brought back memories of Thomas....they had such a short time together, but it had been wonderful. He had shown Duzy how passionate she could be...and then the Storm had taken him....leaving Duzy even more lonely than if she had never known what it meant to be a woman. Duzy let out a wistful sigh and suddenly Mr. Gantt put his arm around her and pulled her to him as if she was a child that needed comfort. Duzy let him hold her, let him caress her back and neck and then raised her face to look into his eyes. Could he read her that well? Could he see the longing that she felt? He lowered his face to hers, winding his fingers through one of her curls and kissed her forehead, her cheek and just as Duzy thought he was going to kiss her lips, he suddenly stepped back and took her arm again to continue their walk, leaving Duzy wanting him, needing him, wishing he had taken it out of her hands and continued.... then, she realized how foolish she was being. She decided at that moment that she needed to keep her distance from him. She would talk to Angel Outlaw and see what they could find out about him. The last thing she needed was to be hurt again. What the devil had she been thinking and why in tarnation did the thought of keeping her distance make her feel so sad?
They heard noise coming from town and thought it may be time for someone to start the race, so they turned and started walking back toward Slick Rock.
12-31-2005, 08:39 PM
Goldie had received the Capt in her parlor for tea and a chat. Apparently he had some concerns for the boy who lost his father and wanted her opinion on a plan he had worked out to help him. He was a very thoughtful well mannered man. She hadn't met any man in the last five years she found nearly so agreeable. In fact, he was smarter than she liked to give most men credit for. And that was precisely what was wrong with him. It was much harder to manipulate a smart man.
She sat demurely across from him and listened to him speak. She had dressed with more than usual care in her red velvet and cream silk. "Capt McClellan, I agree with you whole heartedly. I think what you're doing for the boy is mighty generous and I do think he'll need looking after." Goldie had a strange glow in her usually cold blue eyes, and a big smile on her pale face.
"I am very glad you concur, ma'am. As for his future, I believe he needs an apprenticeship-"
"Oh, no, Captain. He needs schooling and someone wise to look after him. You said the boy's father died, and his mother? Is she gone too? Well, he'll just have to come here... with me."
"Ma'am? I don't-"
"Oh, I insist, and no, not as a servant. His father perished in my service, it's the least I can do for him. I'll make sure he has everything he needs. You, see, my poor late husband only wanted a son. It would honor his memory too. And of course, I'm all alone, and I need looking after too. Why it's perfect! I won't hear of anything else. Let's don't give it anymore thought, tell me will you be at the race? And can I interest you in some more tea?"
01-02-2006, 08:08 PM
Duzy Wales and Bennie Gantt arrived back in town to see a crowd gathering for the festivities, some already placing bets on who would win the race. Duzy knew where the allotted money she had would go, and that would be for Angel Outlaw on Miss Goldie's Arabian. Angel had been raised by Indians and knew how to handle a horse as well as anyone she had seen. Angel hadn't let many people know how well she could ride....just as few knew that she still worked as a Pinkerton Agent when she wanted the assignment. Most of the townspeople thought she ran the stables effeciently, but looked at her as a tomboy of sorts and not the lovely woman Duzy had seen when Angel dressed and acted the lady that she was. Speaking of which, Duzy excused herself from Mr. Gantt to find out why Angel was not already in attendance. He raised Duzy's hand to his mouth and kissed it, telling her he would be looking for her return. Reluctantly, Duzy turned and walked toward the stables.
Duzy decided not to bring up Mr. Gantt's past until after the race, when they would have time to discuss that and what they were going to do about the impending takeover of "The Red Lady." They still needed to get in touch with Lady LaSalle on how to handle those dirty scoundrels, and Duzy had no doubt that she would have plenty to say on the subject. She would come up with a plan that would shock the socks off the men who thought they could be so smooth as to outwit her! Duzy was smiling just thinking of what she might come up with and could almost hear her "not so ladylike" language as she said it. God, how she missed her friend! Duzy and Barb had been discussing her that very morning and she kept coming to her mind, making Duzy think that Lady LaSalle may just be thinking of them as well.
01-05-2006, 11:14 AM
Duzy felt him slip into bed beside her, reach around her and snuggled her against him. She sighed, content that he was with her, and wiggled even closer to him with her back against his chest. She turned, slipping her left arm around him and kissed him, murmuring "I love you." She felt his hands as they moved down her back. Her chemise and pantaloons were on the chair by the window. She hadn't always slept this way....letting go of all the constraints that she wore daily now. Before she had slept in all her clothes, never knowing when she may have to be on the run, never sleeping soundly...always listening. She thought how nice it was to be free from that part of her past. She still slept with her derringer under her pillow, never knowing when some scoundrel might think he could catch her unaware. "Thomas," she whispered as she felt the warmth of his body and felt the heat coming from hers, making her stir as she opened her eyes.
"No, no!" She didn't know if she had just thought it or said it aloud....it was just a dream....one that she had relished at first, right after the storm, just after losing him....just having him for a few seconds had been worth the torture of waking and not finding him there with her. It had been months since she had dreamed of him, why now? Flushed, but fully awake, she rose from the bed and walked to the window, looking out at the countryside. She felt that ache of knowing she would never see him again....one that cut to the core of her being and she wrapped her arms around herself and rocked back and forth until she felt like she could stand the pain.
The sun was rising and it looked to be a beautiful day. She hoped that Miss Jenny Dare had fixed whatever problem it was with her flyin' machine. All the townsfolk had been disappointed that the festivities had been cancelled the day before. Some had to get back to their farms, others had stores to run, there was always work to be done. The drifters had stayed, angry that they wouldn't find out if they had won their bets and had kept the saloons busy until the early morning. Fights had broken out and some had been thrown in jail for the night. The mayor was to make the announcement this morning as to when the festivities would be held.
Duzy still hadn't found Angel Outlaw and that had her worried, although her friend had been known to disappear before, never letting anyone know her business. It must have been really important. Duzy knew how much she wanted to ride that Arabian....and how much Angel loved competition! She smiled as she thought of some of the stunts Angel had pulled before the storm. Poor Nathan, she would never forget him having to ride back to the outskirts of town to find his pants waiting for him. "Damn woman!" he had called her, as he dressed and went to confront her....only to find her waiting for him smiling. He could never stay mad at her for long.
Duzy heard Barb stirring in the kitchen and dressed to join her for a cup of steaming coffee and a slice of her delicious apple pie. She and her friend had some things to discuss this morning and then Barb would be heading out to open the telegraph office to see what news, if any, came today.....
01-05-2006, 01:28 PM
"Please, Ma'am! Please! You won't have no china left! AAAAHHHH!" Rebecca ducked in the nick of time to miss the heirloom vase which hit the wall and shattered into a thousand pieces. It littered the ground with at least ten other pieces that were aimed in her direction, now indistinguishable from one another.
"Damn it! Clean it up before I find something that won't break!" Goldie shrieked. Her hair was a bit disheveled, and she was flushed. She was so angry she couldn't see straight. She hated being put off, and the postponement of the race felt like a slap in the face. It didn't matter to her that there were other contestants who had to wait as well. What did she care for those who would be losing to her? She was ready to scream! She needed something to calm her nerves.
"Rebecca!! Hurry up and come fix my hair! I have to dress! I have to go to town!"
She wanted to see the person responsible for this.
"Why did I ever come to this town?" She shouted as she knocked the ornaments and decorative books from a near by table. She ran up the stair case as her harrowed servant restored order to her home in her wake. She slammed the door to her room and threw herself under her bed in search of her hidden brandy bottle. She took two large draughts without bothering with a glass and sank onto her bed. With one more swill she tucked the container under her pillow. Rarely did she doubt her own judgement, but the purchase of those horses was haunting her. She could have lived very comfortably for a long time without them. Now she needed to find other means until they turned a profit. She only had a few options. She could either enter every race within a hundred miles and risk losing her entrances, or find a rich man... or boy... She hated being tied down more than anything else she had done in her life. She hated having anyone tell where she could or could not go, hated having to watch what she said, having to hide her liquor, and hide her spending. She breathed in slowly and deeply as the brandy worked it's magic.
Rebecca entered the room quietly, not wishing to enrage her lady any further. "Ma'am. There is a boy at the door, name of Seth. He looks mighty bad off."
Goldie sat up. "Fix my hair," she hurried over to the vanity table to put on some rouge.
The young man watched her come down the stairs. It was the first time he had been in the mistresses house. It was fancy looking and overwhelming, and everything in his life was changing so fast. But the thing that caught his eye most was a beautiful woman. She had soft brown eyes and dark hair and the smoothest skin he had ever seen. It was hard to concentrate on what the mistress was saying when all he wanted to do was look at the servant girl behind her....
01-05-2006, 08:00 PM
Beth and Vickie left the house and walked along the cobblestone road towards the river inlet. It was a pleasant day with a light salty breeze coming off the Delaware River stirring the ringlets of hair that had escaped the confinements of the ladies’ hats. There were a few people that also thought it good to take an afternoon walk, but Beth knew that they would have more privacy here than at her home. She loved her servants dearly and treated them most kind, but they reveled in the doings of the estate’s owners and couldn’t wait to gossip amongst themselves. Oh, how that grated on her nerves! The pair finally found an area underneath some tall trees that would afford them the privacy that they were looking for. Vickie took a notepad and a pencil out of her reticule and began to take notes.
Beth told Vickie everything-------everything that Vickie didn’t know. How she went to work at the young age of 9 as a seamstress to earn money for her family. She was really quite good and was soon paid to make fancy dresses for ladies at a brothel by the owner----a madam named Louise deLouvely. She found out just how much money those woman made at their chosen profession. It made Beth’s young mind spin! Her family was so poor, and the temptation was too great. So that is how she started. Madam Louise would not let men bed her until she was at least 13, but she showed her other things that she would allow. When Beth turned 13, she had her first true customer and she never looked back. Soon she began to have several steady “Johns” and was making money hand over fist. Louise taught her the business end of the job, how to start her own brothel, and how to manage the books.
Then, tragically, her parents both died of pneumonia leaving Beth to raise her younger brother and baby sister. She sent them both off to the best boarding schools, and set out to start a business of her own. She sold her parents home and any possessions that she and her siblings didn’t want, and proceeded to head out West. That’s how she met Slick in the Okalahoma Territory, that’s where he broke her heart and took her money, and that’s where she decided to start all over again in Slick Rock. She had kept in touch with her brother and sister. Her sister was now married to a silver smith and living in Mass., and her brother was a captain in the Army. Both of them knew Beth’s profession, but they never spoke of it. To have a sister who was a famous prostitute and owner of an infamous saloon in the untamed West would not bode well in the society circles of New England, nor looked upon well by the American military even though she frequently had soldiers as customers.
Beth then spoke of Slick Rock and the Shooting Star Saloon. How it prospered and grew just as the town did. The girls that worked for her were not run of the mill whores. They were bright, beautiful, buxom, and beguiling. As the men gambled with poker the girls made sure that they bet big and lost big, but they still made it worth the gentlemen’s while afterwards. Her girls always made sure that they men left with a little bit of money or gold in their pockets, but a big smile on their face. A girl could leave whenever she pleased. No one was ever forced to stay. There was genuine respect between her and the girls. Then there was Slick again, this time showing up in Slick Rock. The two of them eventually made up------more than one time, and each time being better than the last. “He was an incredible lover…….”, Beth said as she remembered the feeling of his hands running up and down her back, pressing her against the firmness of his chest. Vickie could only imagine what her friends must be thinking of as she cast her eyes sky-ward and shook her head. She glanced over at Vickie, and had to laugh. If she only knew! Beth sighed, and continued on. She talked about the day that Slick told her that he was opening up his own saloon. She could have killed him where he stood, but after he explained that he would be offering different gambling tables and would have entertainment on nights opposite of when Lizzie would sing-----well, she decided that it would be tolerable. As Slick described it they would be separate entities, but each one would complement the other bringing in more customers. And he was right. It did just that.
Business was booming for them both, and the money was pouring into the saloon. She redecorated the Star, and made it more glorious than before. She gave all of her girls raises, and hired more. Slick suggested that they put their money in the bank for safe keeping. Lady LaSalle was sitting at her bureau brushing her hair as Slick spoke and paced behind her. “All of that money lying around is just begging to be stolen. And most folks around here know what you’re sitting on”, Slick said as his eyes traveled down to her rounded posterior, “It’s a gold mine in the simplest of terms. The Shooting Star has more gold in it than the DeMonte mine across the ridge. That amount of money would tempt even the most pious of men, and I am sure that most would succumb to that temptation. Lord knows I succumbed to your temptation, my love.” “Yes, but what I tempted you with was not green or gold and did not make noise in your pocket when you walked”, she teased him back flashing that incredible smile at him. “No, that indeed it did not. But,” he whispered as he leaned over and placed his hands gently on her bare shoulders, “it did cause you to make lots of noise in my bed!”, and he kissed the soft spot on the side of her neck.
Beth could feel the heat rising from her center, and Vickie must have realized it as well. She dropped her pencil and notebook and exclaimed, “Oh for pities sake! Would you stop it! You’re going to make me blush!” “Believe me, if I wanted to make you blush, I most definitely could. Slick had such a way with……………….words. ” Beth smiled devilishly back at Vickie, and held up her hands as if she had just put a shovel down causing Beth to laugh hard at her. Vickie instead picked up her pencil again and began writing. That simple act jarred Beth’s memory. “If I recall correctly, Slick had me sign some papers that day.” “Really? Do you remember what they were for?” “I’m not sure,” Beth replied. “I believe it had something to do with ownership of the saloons if something happened to one of us. The details of which I paid little to no attention to at the time since I was being so deliciously distracted.” Vickie didn’t even look up this time, she already knew that Beth was deliberately taunting her and she refused to give her the satisfaction of seeing her blush. “Well,” she said in a squeaking voice, “that does give me something to go on.”
They got up and began to walk back to the house again. “When will you be leaving?”, Beth inquired. “Probably the day after next. I just have to make sure that I can secure a seat on the stage. But being in my line of business makes it so that that shouldn’t be a difficulty that I would encounter.” They stopped in front of the house, ending their conversation immediately. It was all too obvious that they were being observed from the windows and front door. Beth whispered “I wish you God speed on your journey. But I do believe that you’ll need this as well, I’m sure.” Beth reached into the pocket on her apron and produced the Pinkerton badge that belonged to Vickie. She kept it in her palm and passed it to Vickie’s as she shook her hand. “I’m trusting you. Don’t disappoint me.” “I’ll contact you when I arrive. And I won’t disappoint you.”
And with that she turned and headed down the street. Beth couldn’t help but feel that there were storms coming-----one in Slick Rock, and one in New Castle. Neither one could be averted. And she would have to face one head on here. She had to talk to Dawg, and that could prove to be disastrous.
01-06-2006, 09:54 PM
Capt Mac was excited his horse Duke was coming in with train that was now pulling into the station. After the race the towns people would get the drift that he was more than the average mil officer. he had decided to buck the family money for his own career and done quite well but now with the horse and all his gear coming in - there would be no hiding his well heeled roots.
As the train came to a stop a railroad man came up to him and said - you must be Capt Mac - do me a favor and unload your horse for me - he has a temper.
Indeed Duke had a temper - all steeple chase or english style cross country horses do - that is what makes them hearty enough and fast enough to win the races.
Capt Mac got his horse and gave instructions to get his stuff to his room.
He headed to the stable to put up horse and then back to the Mistresses place to see if she had found that boy. However he then decided to go back to room and change into riding clothes and ride over on Duke - then the Mistress - "man does she fill out a dress" would see that capt Mac had more substance than what she probably thought.
Capt Mac knew she was very volatile - but something about that woman mad his blood boil and pards that is not in a bad way:)
01-11-2006, 11:31 AM
Barb and Duzy had enjoyed their coffee and pie and Duzy told Barb about her dream of Thomas. A lone tear ran down the side of Barb's face as she listened to Duzy, and remembered the nights that she had dreamed of Jim and Toby, sometimes their faces intertwining before she would awake and find herself alone and lonely. It had been such a happy time, with both men vying for her attention and her hand in marriage. Then to lose them both had been devastating. They hugged each other, each knowing how the other felt and drawing strength from each other to help ease the pain.
They were interupted by the sound of a knock on the door and quickly wiped the tears from thier faces as they walked to the door to see who would be visiting this time of morning. It was Pablo, from the stables, with a note from Angel. Cold chills ran down thier spines as they began to read.....
"please don't tell anyone what I am about to tell you".....and ended with, "be back as soon as I can and please tell Miss Goldie sorry for not being here for the race." Barb and Duzy looked at each other....both white from the blood which had drained from their faces. It would not be easy waiting for their dear friend to return....not after reading where she would be going and what she would be facing....
01-11-2006, 09:53 PM
Claude... What just happened?
Danged if I know, Rufus! What're we gonna do now?
You just said it, Claude.
"Danged if I know."
Forget it, Claude. What do you know about this human sheriff character?
Well, he seems like a nice enough guy, doesn't kick me anyway. As far as I know he makes an honest effort to do his job. Can't hear or smell any better'n most humans, but isn't overly dumb either.
Okay then. The sheriff already has our evidence, even if he doesn't know where they came from. We'll give him a chance to make something of it. In the meantime let's go have a chat with Two-Bit and compare notes. I'll meet you at the stable in a few minutes so noone will get wise that we're together.
Gotcha Rufus. See you at Two-Bit's!
- - -
Claude trots into the stable and finds Two-Bit out of his stall and in deep conversation with another horse from a stall across the aisle...
Hey Two-Bit! Ya got a minute?
Two-Bit quickly turns towards Claude and the other horse industriously paws at a clear place on the floor until it's covered with straw.
Oh, Hi Claude. What've you been up to today?
I've been out doing some in-vestigatin' with Rufus. We decided it's time to come see you and compare notes.
Okay, I guess I've got time. Where is he?
Rufus took the high road so we wouldn't be seen traveling together. He'll be here in a minute.
I'll wait here then. Say, have you met Helios here? He works with that Jenny Dare, the flyin' human female! Helios has an amazing understanding of basic flight principles for a non-flyer. Of course, he has a better than average chance for close-up observation than the average horse too.
Seen him, havn't met him. Howdy Helios! Say, that's a pretty fancy moniker ya got there. You some kinda sun god or something?
Hello Claude. You're pretty sharp for a westerner! Are you from back east?
Naw, my human just reads a lot; sometimes out loud to me, especially during long winters snowed in somewhere.
Claude does undercover security work for the town, Helios. Comes up with some pretty interesting stuff now and again too!
Say Helios.. Are you going to get into that big horse race everybody's talkin' about too?
Why I couldn't say, Claude. Miss Jenny hasn't yet said anything about us racing. Usually she comes around and makes a big fuss over me before we get into anything big like this though.
About this time Rufus climbs in through the window overlooking the lean-to out back and comes to perch on a stall corner post.
I suppose you're wondering why I called you all here to...
Two-Bit snorted and gave Rufus' post a sharp rap with one hoof causing Rufus to scramble for a claw-hold to keep from being knocked off. Resuming his seat, Rufus glared at Two-Bit then took time to smooth a bit of ruffled fur.
You were saying, Rufus?
One of your horse theives is back and it looks like he's still got designs on those fancy white horses.
Oh?? I thought we'd settled their hash. Did one slip out of the humans' jail?
No. This one never went in. I suspect he was the ring-leader all along and managed to not get caught.
At least this time he doesn't have a gang to work with. Heh-heh! What can he expect to do all by his lonesome? On the other hand, it might be fun to get my claws into him. I've been hanging around this stable too much lately. What do you think, Claude?
I think I want in on whatever you've got in mind! Uh... What do you have in mind?
Nothing yet, but combine that with the race and it seems like a chance for all of us to have some fun though.
Tell him about the other guy, Rufus! You know, the fancy dresser.
IF I get the opportunity... Ah-hem... Two-Bit, it seems there may be two plots hatching at once and one of those town humans who's so fond of playing with papers is behind them both. Some new fancy dressed human tom came in on the stage and he and the paper pusher are planning to fix the race. Interesting part is that fancy dresser and the horse thief don't seem to know about each other!
We actually had papers with a map and everything! Rufus took 'em to that Secret Service agent at the cafe and you know what he did?? He took one quick look at them, sent them to the sheriff with no explanation or anything and then just rode out of town!! So, me'n Rufus figured we'd have to do something ourownselves and came to see you!
So do you know just what-all paper pusher's plan entails?
Not us! We weren't at their original planning sessions so Rufus only got what parts were discussed at this meeting. Katlamity put us onto it originally and she didn't get it all either. Cain't neither Rufus or me read so we don't know what's on the papers either.
I wish you'd let me look at those papers before you gave them to that Secret Service agent!
Sorry Two-Bit, but I kinda owed him. He'd bought me a drink earlier. If I'd known he was going to just skip town I would have brought them to you directly.
If I might put forth a suggestion...?
Of course, Helios! If you're going to get in on this race you have as much right as I or any of the rest of us to help with the plans.
Well, I know even less than the rest of you about what the humans are up to, but, it seems to me we might ask ourselves what this human paper pusher might gain by fixing a horse race. Now there are only a few kinds of humans who pay particular attention to papers in a western town of this size; bankers, lawyers, land agents and railroad officers being the main ones. Now the railroad does pass through here but I havn't seen any sign of a major facility. Claude, has your undercover security work pointed to any big land speculation going on in the area?
Well, nothing since the flashy human female bought that big ranch outside of town. She's the same one who im-ported those flashy horses. Oh, and the meeting we observed was in an office but it wasn't in a bank.
Which leaves us with a lawyer most likely. Without seeing those papers we still can't be sure what his final goal is but see what you all think of this idea... Suppose he wanted to get the flashy female's ranch. If she'd just bought it, then turned around and imported some expensive race horses she might be low on funds right now. An unscrupulous person with access to some money might spread some bets around, maybe even get the fancy female into some of them herself, then arrange for her horses to lose the race! He could have fancy dresser helping make the bets so they couldn't all be traced back to him. He could also hire the horse thief to steal those same horses, either just before or during the race, to make sure they couldn't win. More likely during the race itself so the bets couldn't be easily cancelled. Mr. Lawyer could even have things arranged with the thief so that he ends up with the horses too! If the female is unmated and attractive he might even have designs on herself.
Dang, Helios! You're really smart!
Thank you, Claude. I consider that quite a compliment coming from a security agent like yourself.
Awwww... So all we have to do is keep an eye on those white horses and make sure nothing happens to them. If they still lose the race at least it'll have been fair and square!
You've been suspiciously quiet, Rufus...
Just taking it all in. Two-Bit, you've been here a while now. What do you think of the Arab's chances of winning the race if it's not interfered with?
Most likely they -will- win it, unless there's a horse here I havn't heard about yet, or there's a legitimate accident. No offense Helios, but I get the impression you're not much interested in racing. I get the idea you have more intellectual interests, and are probably more of a strength and endurance kinda guy anyway. Nobody else I've heard of will really even be close.
None taken and you're quite right. IF it were to be the right type of race I might beat them but I think the flashy lady will make sure this race format will play to her horse's strengths.
What about you, Two-Bit? Can't you beat 'em?
Oh easily! But, Cap'n Morgan's afraid I'll cheat just for a joke and almost certainly won't race me. The race rules won't allow horses without riders either.
What if we get the horse thief to ride you? What better way to keep a close eye on him?
Now you're taling, Rufus! And between us we can have some fun with him along the way too. All we have to do is get Morgan to hire the horse thief as my 'jockey'.....
01-12-2006, 08:07 AM
Duzy dressed carefully as she readied herself to go to see Miss Goldie. She hadn't met her yet, but had heard plenty from some of the ladies whispering in thier little circles in the dry goods store. "Hateful woman, thinks she's God's gift to man," one woman had said. Most of the women in Slick Rock got along fine and Duzy never listened to gossip to consider how she felt about anyone. She had just picked up her garnet red day dress from "The Gypsy's Needle" the day before and couldn't wait to see how it looked on. Duzy and Gypsy had talked and laughed, Gypsy was always a delight to be around, always in good spirits and made everyone feel better after seeing her. Duzy sensed that she was worried about Nathan or something else was on her mind. As usual, the work was superior and the bodice fit over her corset like a glove, lifting her busom and leaving Duzy with a figure that was sure to turn a head or two. She suddenly thought of Mr. Gantt and hoped he would be in town to see her in it....
"Back to business", Duzy told herself, not looking forward to telling Miss Goldie that Angel Outlaw wouldn't be riding her Arabian. Good thing she had waited to place her money on the race, she was betting on Angel as much as the horse. Now, she would check out the other entries before placing a bet.
Duzy thought she heard someone yelling "Rebecca" as she stepped up to the door of the mansion. A beautiful young woman, looking a little flushed, came to the door and after introducing herself, Duzy was asked to sit in the parlar to wait. Duzy looked around in awe and thought of the times she had spent on the trail, in hideouts and caves, and wondered how it felt to live in such opulence.
After a few minutes, Miss Goldie appeared, dressed in a gold outfit with black trim, looking just as beautiful as her surroundings. After introducing herself, Duzy proceeded to inform her that Angel had left town and had sent her apologies that she would not be able to ride the Arabian...."Damn it, damn her! How could she do this to me?" That's what I get for thinking I could trust another woman, that little...." "Excuse me, Miss, but that is enough! You will not be calling my friend any names in my presence, even in your own home! I will be taking my leave now." Without further ado, Duzy started to the door and noticed the embarrassed look on the young ladies face as she exited the house. Duzy felt sorry for her and wondered if Nevada Skye could use more help, but realized that the young woman probably made a lot more money living here if she could put up with such arrogance! Maybe the new mayor needed a housekeeper...
Duzy walked toward town, still fuming and cursing under her breath, calling Miss Goldie some names she hadn't used in quite awhile and wishing she had just slapped her senseless....and then realized that would have put her in the same class as the spiteful woman she had just left! She hadn't even taken the time to ask if Angel was sick or what had gone wrong, not that Duzy would have told her the truth of the matter anyway....just that she had been called out of town. "Why, even in her outlaw days, Duzy had never treated anyone in such a matter, that was unless she had to kill them outright," Duzy thought as she stepped inside the telegraph office to tell Barb what had just happened. She stopped dead in her tracks as she noticed the man standing at the counter, and caught herself looking at the way his hair curled around his neck below his hat, the broad shoulders, the low swung holster around his lean hips and those long legs, pure masculinity, Duzy was thinking, and then heard him say, "unfinished business, stop. indefinate stay, stop. will contact you at next destination, stop. "This would be one way of finding out more about the handsome Mr. Gantt," Duzy thought, as he turned to look at who had opened the door. "Miss Wales, nice to see you again, how are you this morning?" he asked as he perused her from head to toe just as she had him a few moments before. "May I say you are looking lovely this morning, that color looks mighty fine on you, taking his eyes away from the creamy white flesh that was exposed at the top of her bodice to look at her face. Their brown eyes locked and Duzy was sure she could feel the electricity that sparked between them! Duzy heard Barb make a sound like she was stifling a cough and immediately came to her senses, thanking him for the compliment, and excused herself to see her friend.
"Well, that was interesting," Barb stated as she looked at Duzy, waiting for a reply. "I know, Barb, the man has that kind of affect on me everytime I see him, now please quit smiling like that and tell me what you know of him?"
02-07-2006, 03:54 PM
Just as Duzy was leaving the telegraph office, she heard a shot ring out. She was knocked backward against the door she had just closed and then slowly slumped to the ground. She could hear Barb screaming and people running and then she saw a bright light drawing her, welcoming her. Duzy was pronounced dead at 12 o'clock with a shot through her heart.
02-07-2006, 11:29 PM
Cat Morgan whistled a bright tune as he strode along towards the cafe and, more particularly, the cute little red-haired waitress who worked there.
If you'd asked him for a recommendation on the food at the cafe Cat would have given you a blank look. Ask him about the waitress though and his eyes would light up. Unless you had time on your hands you'd probably be better off not asking.
At first the waitress was just a source of local information to Cat, albeit a most pleasant source. But, as he took more meals in the cafe and got to know her better, Cat was finding himself more and more attracted to her lively, happy nature and she just got prettier every time he saw her. Long red hair and freckles topping a petite little frame tends to do that.
Cat's supply of funds was dwindling faster than planned as he found himself turning towards the cafe at mealtimes more and more frequently. He'd have to find regular work soon or be forced to make a trip he'd just as soon not.
The only worrisome thing about the little waitress was the Secret Service agent. Cat knew the agent had been attracted to the pretty redhead too, but, as far as he knew they'd never gone beyond a little casual flirting as the agent nursed a cup of coffee. That should mean Cat had a legitimate right to visit the girl, but he considered himself a gentleman and would not deliberately step on someone's toes so he was easing along to see how things lay between the waitress and the Secret Service agent.
Even more, Cat really didn't want to attract the agent's scrutiny. The war was long over but some folks have long memories. Not that Cat had ever done anything to be ashamed of, even during the war, but he'd been on the wrong side at the time. 'Wrong' meaning 'losing'.
Today, however, was warm and bright, the Secret Service agent had dropped out of sight suddenly, and Cat Morgan was on his way to a light breakfast and a visit with a pretty little vision in red hair and skirts.
When he entered the cafe Cat Morgan was disappointed to not see the waitress so he took a small table up front where she couldn't help but see him as she came and went from the kitchen. Since he wasn't working Cat tended to appear at the cafe near the end of the usual breakfast hour. That meant he'd have the place, and the pretty waitress, pretty much to himself. This time he was early. The doors hadn't been open long and Cat was actually ahead of most of the crowd.
Soon the waitress entered from the kitchen carrying a couple of plates to an older couple sitting in a sunny spot near the window. She smiled at Morgan as she hurried by and he automatically smiled and sat up a little straighter.
In a couple of minutes Cat was stumbling through ordering scrambled eggs, bacon and apple cider as the waitress grinned at him. He was embarrassed, she was amused and all was as God had intended.
"That's not much of a breakfast for a big boy like you is it?" teased the waitress.
"Aww, I've got something to do this morning and I don't want to be too full," stammered Cat. He was kind of flustered that she might consider him just a 'boy'.
"What are you up to so early?" she asked, "Got a job lined up?"
"I wish," replied Cat, "My pocketbook's startin' to complain. No, ol' Two-Bit's wanting to get into that race they keep talking about and I'm going out to find a man to ride 'im, if the race ever happens. Seems it keeps getting held up for some reason."
"Two-Bit wants to race?? she asked doubtfully, "What about you? Aren't you going to race your own horse?"
"Sure, I'd like to," responded Cat, "but my leg is acting up lately and I'm not sure I'd be able to last the distance. That wouldn't be fair to Two-Bit, or anyone who bet on us, so I'll find a stand-in for this one." "How 'bout you? You could ride him and Two-Bit wouldn't even know you were on his back!" blurted Cat.
The object of Cat's affections laughed at that. "Why Mr. Morgan! You don't even know me and I've never even seen this Two-Bit. He might run away with me and then what would I do?"
"Oh he'd never do that!" denied Cat, "Two-Bit's really well behaved and you'd be perfectly safe with him. He's even more of a gentleman than I am when it comes to fair maidens. It's only mean folks who have to watch out for him."
"He sounds really smart for a horse," said the waitress. She looked around and saw no-one needed her attention right away and sat down to chat for a minute more. "What's Two-Bit look like? I havn't seen you riding him at all."
"Mostly Two-Bit's lazing around the livery getting fat, on my money," Cat answered ruefully, "Well, I suppose it's really 'our' money since I couldn't have got.. earned it without him."
"Sounds more like a partner than just a horse," teased the waitress, "So what's he look like?"
"Oh, sorry. Well he's big, real big, but sleek not chunky, and solid black except for some round white spots the size of a two-bit piece sprinkled across his hips. He's got a long mane, feathers at his feet, and his tail almost reaches the ground. You have to be careful about that tail too. If he doesn't like you Two-Bit can crack it like a whip!"
"Oooh he sounds so pretty!" exclaimed the waitress enthusiastically, "I wish I could ride him some time!"
"You can ride him!" offered Cat hopefully. "Any time you're down near the livery if I'm not there just go in and introduce yourself."
"Silly! I live here. They already know me at the livery. Angel comes in here fairly often."
"I meant to Two-Bit," corrected Cat, "He'll be happy for an excuse to be out and about. Besides, he's especially fond of pretty girls who pay attention to him."
"Oh now you're making fun of me, Mr. Morgan," pouted the waitress prettily, "Besides, I wouldn't dream of taking your horse out alone the first time I saw him! Why I might be borrowing him just when you wanted him for something too."
"Two-Bit and I would both be tickled pink to have you take him out," promised Cat, "And I have no plans for him, after this morning's business, other than the race. If you insist on an escort when you ride him I would be just proud as a peacock to borrow one of Angel's other horses and escort you. Oh, and my friends call me'Cat'. Please?" he continued shyly.
"'Cat'!" retorted the waitress laughing out loud, "You have got to be kidding me!" she continued. "Folks around here mostly call me 'Kitty'! Short for Katherine."
About this time there was a yell from the kitchen and Kitty jumped up still laughing. "Now you stop teasing me and get out of here so I can get some work done, and -maybe- I'll see you at the livery one day soon."
Kitty went into the kitchen still giggling and Cat Morgan had to work hard to make his mouth work so he could finish eating because of the big, silly grin that he couldn't get rid of.
The old couple at the window were rather amused too.
02-16-2006, 10:50 AM
02-16-2006, 02:40 PM
Kid Sopris‘, arrival at the White House before President Roosevelt was most revealing. President Roosevelt revealed that he had a request from the Pinkerton Agency regarding assistance needed to uncover and expose some terrible conspiracy. Further the lady involved as a potential witness and victim was none other than Lady LaSalle , a close friend of Mrs. Roosevelt the First Lady.
The First Lady concerned for her friend based on conversations her husband had with the Pinkerton Agency, urged her husband to get his Personnel Protection Secret Service Agent for so many years, involved. Besides he was in the town that was having the problem.
The President sent for Kid Sopris, disclosing some request that he see fit to have done prior to his departure and arrival at the White House. One of those request involving the falsifying of a death of Duzy Anne Wales, because of her Presidential Pardon for Outstanding behavior and turning her life around. The president did not want her to get involved in anything that could cause her or the President some embarrassment. The president was also aware of Duzy’s past but there was never hard proof she ever did anything wrong, other than poor judgment on who she hung out with. .
During Agent Sopris departure from Slick Rock, A government sharpshooter had contacted Duzy and advised her that her death will have to be faked, by the request of the President of the United States. Details would be made available after she is hustled out of town. Duzy Appeared suspicious but she was given a copy of the Pardon granted to her by the President and asked to trust him, as Kid Sopris informed her, before his departure from Slick Rock .
The very next day following his meeting with President Roosevelt, Kid Sopris arrived at the residence of Lady LaSalle, accompanied by Vickie. Kid Sopris displayed a letter from the President addressed to Ms. LaSalle.
The instruction and request of the President to Ms. LaSalle was for her to accompany Kid Sopris and Vicky back to Slick Rock. While in route they would meet up with Duzy Anne Wells, (deceased, or that’s what everyone is to believe), before reaching Slick Rock.
The real and personnel property that rightfully belongs to Lady LaSalle are at risk’s including, some monetary trusts that were created many years ago before the horrible storm at Slick Rock.
Back in Slick Rock the recent events have worked to the Presidents and Kid Sopris favor, as horrible as they might be, they have stalled the Horse Race, which allowed a lot to be done.
The hard part for Duzy, was she couldn’t tell Mr. Gantt of her sudden departure, as she was told to trust no one. Then there was the issue of Mr. Jamison and his accomplices which was the root of all of this . The government had evidence that the local attorney in Slick Rock was deeply rooted, not only in the stealing of personal and real property, but the assets of Lady LaSalle, and was Mr. Jamison many partners.
Duzy, after her faked death, was ushered aboard a East bound train before most folks knew of her death. Once clearly out of town, The Government Agent met Duzy in the Baggage Car, opening the breathable wooden coffin, almost caused the Express Agent, C. Nile Sr. to have a heart attack.
Government Agent Jobe B. Donn, made sure Duzy was alright and in fine condition. She was given a new dress and wardrobe courtesy of the Government from Gypsy’s shop in Slick Rock .
Duzy was escorted the rest of the way to the next town East about 100 miles away where she met up with Kid Sopris, Lady LaSalle, Vicky the Pinkerton Agent, and four more Agents assigned to Sopris for the remainder of the investigation.
Angel Outlaw, who now was a Pinkerton Agent herself, had a past as well, and was summoned back to Washington by her superiors and at the request of the President. The President would hand Angel her Presidential Pardon with the President’s compliment for her excellent service, and allowed to continue her life without consequence.
The one thing Angel never did was to reveal Duzy’s true identity, and not turning Duzy in as an outlaw. The rest of the gang were dead. She was working on catching Duzy, by becoming her friend, with Duzy thinking she just worked the stables. Angel was under strict orders not to take independent action without consulting with superiors regarding any information she had obtained. There are no other living witnesses, so she really had no proof....and by then we had started to be friends.
The one thing that Kid Sopris knew that nobody else did, was he had the approval to terminate Mr. Jamison and all of his accomplices; terminate with extreme prejudice. Something the Kid Sopris knew how to do all to well.
The past that haunts him always, day or night.
It was in his train ride back to Slick Rock that he began to think of the “Red Head” waitress, and remembered he didn’t even know her name. Perhaps its better that he don’t until all this is over he thought.
It was under the cover of darkness when they all arrived in Slick Rock, only the Station Master was around and half asleep, so he didn’t notice who got off the train. The nine dark figures made their way towards the hotel. Nobody knew they were there.
Nevada Sky and Shaky’s hotel still had rooms available, and all was made comfortable after the long ordeal. It was politely requested of both Shaky and Nevada Skye not to reveal to anyone that all of them were in town.
Morning would come soon enough , and Mr. Jamison and his attorney friend Sinn B. Dunn, Esq. would be properly dealt with. Sopris held the warrants for those two and 3 others. Those warrants said “Dead or Alive”. Sopris had no problem handling it either way.
Sheriff Alone would get the first visit in the morning, early before the rest of the town had a chance to wake. Besides Sopris learned that the horse race was going to begin soon.
02-16-2006, 04:07 PM
Bennie Gantt sat in "The Red Lady" finishing off the last of the bottle of tequila. He gave the barkeeper a motion of his hand to let him know he needed another bottle. He usually didn't drink this much, but the news of Duzy Wale's death had hit him hard! Why had he not told her upfront that he was in fact Thomas' brother and that was the reason he was on his way to Slick Rock that day. He thought of his brother who had written him before the big storm and who had told him he had met his future bride and wanted him to come meet her. Then the storm had taken Thomas' life and here it was more than a year later and he had not told her that she was a very rich woman. Instead, the day he had met her on the stagecoach, all he could think about was HER! What would his brother think of him? He felt sick inside. He wished he had shown her the letter letting her know how much Thomas had loved her and that he had left her half of everything he owned. Now it was all his....but what good was that without Duzy there to share it with? And what the hell was he thinking anyway? Did he think he could just take Thomas' place in her life? Why, of all women, had she taken his breath away when he looked into her eyes? Why did he want to hold her, why did the tequila not stop the pain, why did someone shoot her down like that? The only thing he did know was that whoever had did this was going to pay with their life if it took him a lifetime to find out who and why. Throwing down a coin and picking up his bottle, he left to go back to the hotel where he hoped he could finally get some sleep and forget.
02-16-2006, 06:03 PM
Duzy was settling down in her room thinking of everything that had happened in the last weeks. Now that she was back in Slick Rock she didn't know how she was going to tell Barb, Gypsy, Lizzie and so many others that she was alive! No one but Angel had known that she was anyone but Anne Wales and now she held a Presidential pardon from all her days with the gang. No more worrying about whether Angel would turn her in, or someone else would find out. She was finally free from her past. Everything had happened so fast, with Kid Sopris confronting her with the fact that he knew she had been the notorious outlaw, maskquerading as Frank. It had been taken into account that she had helped to save the people of Slick Rock and had built the orphanage for all the children that had been left homeless and the reasons she had become an outlaw to begin with. Angel Outlaw had actually gone to the President to plead in her interest instead of turning her in. And, where the devil was Angel now?
Duzy thought of the train ride in the coffin and almost choked. She had sure been glad to get out of that box! They had thought of everything, giving her a new wardrobe from "The Gypsy's Needle" and providing her favorite tequila. Her mind wandered to Bennie Gantt and she couldn't help but wonder how he had felt about her death. Had he cared? Did he feel the kind of loss that she would have felt had he been killed? Duzy had thought about him everyday and wished that somehow she could have told him and some of her best friends what was going on. And, God how good it was to see her dear friend Lady LaSalle again. She wondered just how much her friend had told the First Lady of the United States about her own past? They had not had much time together, but Duzy sensed that Lady LaSalle was not as comfortable with coming back to Slick Rock as she was pretending. And how many Lady Pinkertons were there anyway? Duzy had liked Vickie right away and could see that she really cared for her friend.
Duzy heard someone walking down the hallway sounding like he was about half drunk and wondered who it could be. Usually Nevada Skye and Shaky kept the riffraff out of their place. Duzy couldn't help but get up and open the door just a little to see who it could be. It was like she was being drawn to the door! She peeped outside and saw the backside of Bennie Gantt as he took about three steps forward to one sideways and straightened back up again. She would know him from any angle, as she had memorized that body in her mind since that first day on the stagecoach. Then, there had been that day when he was standing in front of the bank and he had caught her looking at his backside in a very unladylike way! Just as she raised her eyes, he turned, looked into her eyes and cursed aloud! Damn it to hell, now I am seeing ghosts, he exclaimed, shaking his head to clear the cobwebs. Duzy hurriedly closed the door and stood there with her hands against the door wanting so badly to open the door and run into his arms. She could almost feel his mouth against hers, his hands in her hair, down her back, pulling her against him. She could feel his lean body and felt her pulse quicken and felt the heat as it spread through her body with a need so strong it was all she could do to not open the door. What was she to do? She didn't know what Kid Sopris' plan was and had been told to stay in her room until he returned. But, in the end it didn't matter, because Bennie had turned around and followed his ghost, opening the unlocked door and walking inside. He lifted Duzy into his arms and somehow carried her toward the bed and Duzy knew she couldn't say no to him. Did he even know that it was her, or just someone who looked like her? He had called her a ghost; but, it was obvious that he wanted her as much as she did him. He laid her down on the bed and sat down on the bed beside her kicking off his boots as he pulled her to him. He nuzzeled her neck, kissed her eyes, her nose and then plundered her mouth as his hands traveled down her body, unfastening her chemise and whispering how good she felt. He stopped moving and Duzy opened her eyes and almost cried out with frustration! He had passed out, holding her against him and to beat everything was now snoring in her ear! It was like someone had thrown a glass of cold water on her and coming to her senses she pulled away from him and went to get Lady LaSalle to help her to get him to his room. Duzy said, "don't even ask!" as her friend listened to her request. "Please just help me quickly and get that smirk off your face!" They were both adept at getting a man into bed, for different reasons, of course, but it only took a few minutes to get him settled in his own room comfortably.
They were both holding their sides with laughter and thinking of old times as they hugged each other goodnight, with both of them whispering that they needed some alone time to talk.
Flyin' Jenny Dare
02-19-2006, 06:13 AM
"I believe it will hold, Mr. Forrest. Yes, I believe it will." Jenny Dare looked one last time at the neatly stitched patch in the striped silk of her balloon's envelope. "Please tell the men it's a job well done."
"I will." Mr. Forrest took his employer's arm, and began to lead her through the chilly pre-dawn back toward the hotel. "If I may...I would ask you once again to report this incident to the local law enforcement."
"Absolutely not. Not yet, at any rate."
"Miss Dare--are you sure that is wise? If the saboteur returns--if something should happen during the exhibition--"
"Nonsense!" she said crisply. "I'll not have anyone say that Flyin' Jenny Dare is a coward. You and the men will be extra sharp on your guard. We shall put on a show for the good people of Slick Rock--a show they won't soon forget! And perhaps," she added in a low voice, "the villain responsible for this vandalism will show himself. And if he does, he'd best say his prayers."
02-19-2006, 07:18 AM
Capt Mac finally got to ms Goldie's place and all the ranch hands stared at Capt Mac as he rode through realizing who he was but trying to figure out what kind of saddle he was riding and why he was in his sunday's best (not really he was just in nice english riding attire). Capt Mac thought it was funny and he hollared out - he boys relax it is just Capt Mac.
Even though he was dressed so he still had his shoulder rig with spy glass and pistol, another pistol in his boot and a few knives on his person. Slick Rock had gotten questionable in last few days and last night 9 people came off train very late at night.
He thought he recognized the silouette of one or two of the men - but could not place them right now.
He got right up to Ms Goldie's place and hollared out for her - but before he could even say - Ms G......... she came out of the house - saying who the heck are y.................
Capt Mac then introduced himself correctly to Ms Goldie and told her about his family horse farm back in ole Virginny. He gave her Newspaper clippings about him being a top racer as a teenager and his families pedigree.
Ms Goldie was taken back - here this officer had been around for a few weeks and while everyone knew him as nice, quick witted, and a gentleman - no one would have ever guessed his pedigree - Capt Mac liked it that way. he wanted to get to know people a little bit before money or stature entered into the equation.
So after explaining all the things he'd done back home and then becoming a USRCS officer and traveling the Carribean - all he could think to say is - "Well Ms Goldie - what do you think??"
As he waitied for her to speak he got off Duke and tied him up at the proch to Ms Goldie's place.
02-20-2006, 06:55 PM
"What do I think, Captain? What do I think... I think you should come in for a drink. I have a lot to say." Goldie went in her house and walked into her drawing room without waiting for the Captain to take care of his mount.
She paced the floor for a few seconds, then threw herself down on her settee careless of her purple silk and velvet she was rumpling. She poured herself a drink, then another.
This man was proving to be dangerous. She was desperately trying to catch her breath, her heart was racing, and her head was swimming. What was wrong with her? She poured yet another drink trying to get a hold of herself. A few minutes later Capt. Mac had found her deep in her brandy. She motioned for him to help himself. "Please sit. I'd offer you something else but that damn girl of mine is off on an errand with young Seth. I hope you don't feel I'm being to forward when I relate what I have next. Please keep in mind that I want to save us both some embarrassment, and it's better done in private. Now it seems to me that either you want a job running my stables or you think I might be impressed with your history. Either way the answer is no. I don't need a man to run anything for me, that includes my life. There are a few things about me that are not well known, and I hope it will stay that way, if you take my meaning."
"Yes Ma'am." Capt. Mac sat down. Goldie slowly stood.
"I assume that your family would expect you to find a lady of good breeding and proper birth? That is something I cannot offer you. I refuse to divulge my full history, as so much of it is too painful for me to think of, but I dare say your family would not approve. My late husband was independent, and I have a feeling this is a quality you don't share, please correct me if I'm wrong. I need freedom, Captain. I don't think you can offer that either. You seem like a smart man, and I don't rightly understand what it is about you, but I find the need to be honest with you. I think it's best if you don't come to see me. It's too dangerous for us both. I have too much to worry about and not enough means to gamble, if you take my meaning." Without giving him a moment to speak she left the room and hurried to her bedroom.
"Get him out of your head, you have other worries," she told herself. "No time or need to wimble-wimble. Where will that land you? Back in the whorehouse."
She needed to distract herself. Where was that note she'd gotten earlier about a new rider? She went over to her drawer and rummaged through her top shelf looking for the unsigned note she'd received earlier that day. She pulled it out and examined it once more. It read 'A smart woman in need of a new rider would do well to meet me behind the tavern at dusk tonight.' Who it was from she could only guess, but she was desperate having sent her usual man to settle some things back in Lincoln when she decided to let that damn woman ride. Her judgment had been wrong a lot lately, but what else was she going to do? Hopefully this person would not want to high a cut of the winnings. Maybe the Capt. would want to ride for her? No, no, no... best to keep her distance, and he probably would want to enter on his own anyway. Competition, wonderful. Just what she needed. Competent competition.
"And where the devil are those two damned kids?" She thought suddenly, "They've been gone a long time." She'd caught them wispering to each other over the last few days and she didn't like it. The idea of them spending too much time together made her seethe. "Shouldn't they be back yet?" She decided to go into town and find them before she met with her potential replacement at dusk. With a sigh, she set about dressing herself for the first time in years.
02-20-2006, 09:40 PM
Capt Mac stood by his horse gathering his thoughts.
What Ms Goldie did not know is her explanations and concerns only made Capt Mac more interested in her.:kiss
He did enjoy his blue blood heritage but reveled in making his own way and wanted nothing to do with the "right kind of girls" back home. He left home and became an officer for some of the same things Ms Goldie talked about - and wow did her passion show when she talked that way. Her skin turned a beautiful shade of crimson and Capt Mac liked that in her.:sk
He wanted a woman with that certain "something" and in his mind - Ms Goldie had it. Obviously she had been mistreated in the past and Capt mac resolved himself to be patient but persistent with her.
He decided that he would ride for her but would not tell her until he ran the race - with that plan growing in his mind he rode off to make final preps for the race.
As he got closer to town three banditos came out of the brush demanding money - thinking they had got themselves some city boy.
"Gentlemen, no need for hard play let me get my coat purse from my pocket." The banditos were laughing with their guns pointing at Capt Mac as he swiftly pulled out his pistol shooting two with his pistol and with a flick of his other hand the third bandito had a boot knife stuck right though his throat. They all lay dead moments later as Capt Mac approached the man with knife stuck in his throat - he softly said to him - "You know, better manners would have suited you better:)":nuhnuh
Capt Mac got his knife and road to the sheriff's office to get some deputies and put it a report. He thought to himself - "hmmmmmmm with big race coming up and money coming in - this sleepy little place is getting down right hostile."
Wish that Secret Service Guy was back in town!!
02-21-2006, 10:13 AM
It was early morn, when Sopris went downstairs and was greeted by Nevada Sky and Shakey. A pleasant “Good Morning” was offered by Skye, Sopris reply was, “It soon will be.” And with a tip of his hat he strolled outside. Dew still on the roofs of many of the buildings in Slick Rock, Sopris was quickly joined by 2 of the other agents leaving Agent Donn and another behind to make sure the ladies stayed put, at least for a little while. Sopris gave directions to have breakfast arranged for the ladies and the other agents left behind, and then instructed the agent to met him at the Sheriffs Office.
When Sopris walked into the Sheriff Alone’s office, the Sheriff barely awake himself from long hours and a lot of trouble falling on Slick Rock, stood in silence staring at Sopris. Dressed in his long johns and wearing a gun belt, Sopris inquired, “Do you always sleep wearing your gun?” Sheriff still not believing his eyes poured some hot coffee for all the men.
Sheriff Alone finally gathered his wits and with a smirk upon his face asked , “What in the hell are you doing here?” Sopris drug out the stack of papers carried in his vest and began the long story, and brought some great relief to the Sheriff who for days was looking for Duzy’s body and nobody seemed to know what happened. Sopris assured Sheriff Alone Duzy was very much alive and at the Hotel.
Sopris had introduced the Agent with him and the other, as the second agent walked into the office.
Sopris told the Sheriff to get dressed they were going to arrest Jamison and that good for nothing lawyer partner, Sinn B. Dunn. Sopris also held warrants, “Dead or Alive”, for the other members of the gang members whoever they turned out to be.
Sheriff Alone was quick to point out that there seems to be a lot more dead arrests than live ones when Sopris was on the case. Sopris shrugged the remark and asked the Sheriff if he was going to make some arrests in his long johns or did the Sheriff think he could manage a pair of pants?
Once the sheriff was dressed, the Law Officers set out about their business.
02-21-2006, 11:59 AM
Bennie Gantt heard footsteps going down the hallway and started to awaken. Thoughts of the night before began to invade his mind. As bits and pieces started forming, he remembered how good it had felt kissing her, how she had looked when he had untied her chemise as it had fallen down her shoulders to her tiny waist. She had been small but curved in the right places and had fit his hands perfectly. Damn! The dream had been so real! Then he remembered seeing another woman, a pretty redhead, much more buxom than Duzy, with a husky laugh and laughing eyes and couldn't figure where the hell she had entered his dream?
Always being a man of action, he prepared for the day, making a mental note that too much tequila was not the way to take care of the scoundrel who had shot Duzy down like she was nothing but someone's next meal! And, why the hell had the sheriff not found out anything? Why had she been taken away and who had claimed the body? He had remembered her telling him her brother had been killed in the storm and she had lost the rest of her family back in North Carolina when she was young. He was going to see the Sheriff and then to see Barb to see how she was faring. Barb had loved Duzy and he was worried about Angel Outlaw too. She hadn't returned and he was wondering if she might be in danger too. With that, he went downstairs and bid Nevada Skye a good morning. Not seeing Shaky anywhere, he left to go see the Sheriff.
02-21-2006, 12:23 PM
Goldie waited behind the tavern well into twilight, growing ever more impatient with this mystery man. She’d had no luck finding her maid or the boy she had so many plans for. It irked her that so many of her endeavors and decisions had gone awry in the last few months. Her confidence waned with each passing moment she waited on someone else’s terms. She doubted herself and her desperate actions. Shouldn’t she have thrown the note in the fire and forfeit her entry, and waited to make it up in a later race? Every rash action seemed to have taken her from bad to worse.
She was almost resolved to walk away and go home when a slight shadowed figure came around the corner.
“Well, it’s about time. I figured you weren’t going to-” Goldie’s words caught in her throat as the light fell upon the girl’s face. “Rebecca, where have you been? You’ve been away all day without a word. You are in for quite a punishment, girl. Now go on and get home, I‘m waiting on some business.”
“I left the note, Ma’am,” Rebecca said shakily. “I need to talk with ya.”
“I don’t think we have anything to talk about, unless you want me to send you back to the orphanage you came from.”
“Seth and me are gettin’ married, Ma’am,” She said still not looking her mistress in the face.
“No, you’re not-”
“Yes, Ma’am, we are-”
“NO! You are NOT! Now go home before I tan your hide right here!”
“You can’t scare me no more! I love him, and he loves me! I’m going!” She said finally meeting Goldie’s gaze.
The silence was deadly. Neither woman made a move, one in fear of the other, one in fear of herself.
“Rebecca, dear, before you run off and leave me, there are a few things I need to tell you,” Goldie’s voice was barely above a whisper.
“There ain’t nothing’ you can say that can make me stay.”
“Well, a mother can try, can’t she.”
Rebecca looked as if she’d been shot, “You evil woman! You take it back! I am NOT your daughter!”
“You can yell at me till you’re blue in the face, but it won’t change any facts. I birthed you when I was a whore and left you in front of the orphanage. I came back for you when you were twelve and I married Mr. Mikulus. But you were so much older, it seemed cruel to tell you.”
“Cruel? Cruel, is in every bone of your wicked body! How could you treat me so bad and make me your slave when I was your child? How- no you lie! I know you are lying! I HATE YOU!”
Rebecca ran towards her so suddenly she never knew what hit her. She felt warmth radiating from her abdomen, and her head felt heavy. How much she wanted to lay her head down. Time seemed to slow down as she looked her daughter in the face. The expression the little woman wore was alien and she was staring at Goldie’s middle. Goldie looked down and was vaguely aware that the warmth she’d felt was blood spilling from a gash even deeper red than the dress she wore. She began to feel very cold, and sank to the ground. She was so tired…
A boy was standing next to Rebecca looking very white. It was hard to make out what he was saying.
“We gotta go now! Come on! We‘ll take some of her horses.”
“No. Let’s put her in her bed. Let her die with everythin’ that was so important to her. Alone.”
“Rebecca, I… I’m so… so tired… I can’t see you… I can‘t… I…”
Darkness began to envelope her. Then nothingness.
02-22-2006, 04:04 PM
Duzy was so mad she was biting at the bit and pacing the room. How dare he keep them confined without a word as to what his plan was? It was not like Agent Kid Sopris had left them unattended. A warm bath had been brought as well as good food, but Duzy couldn't stand being cooped up, and he had Agents posted in the hallway to make sure they stayed put. Duzy could just imagine how Lady LaSalle and Vickie were taking this. They had probably already given the "cocky" agent more than an earfull by now. Did he not know the women of Slick Rock well enough to know they would not stand for this! "Well, guess not," Duzy was thinking as she walked to the window to look out. "Well, I'll be damned!" Duzy said aloud noticing for the first time that her room was over the roof of the first floor and it would be an easy climb to get out afterall! She stripped down to her bloomers and chemise, strapped her knife to her leg, and reached for her guns. She didn't need all those clothes on while climbing out the window and she would go down the alleyway and around the back of the buildings and take a walk to get some fresh air, not caring one whit whether HE liked it or not! As she started to pass Bennie Gantt's room, she looked in the window and noticing he wasn't there, she thought it would be a good time to get some clothes so she could dress and walk back in the front entrance. Soon, she was out of Gantt's room with her hair up under one of his hats and a shirt and pair of britches to boot! Duzy laughed to herself remembering the times she had evaded the Feds before and was enjoying herself immensely!
She turned down the alleyway and started to walk when she tripped on something in the dark. Looking closer, Duzy was surprised to see that it was that haughty woman from the mansion, Goldie Mikulus, and she was covered in blood! Realizing she had walked into a real mess this time and knowing she couldn't be seen by anyone, Duzy wondered what the devil to do now? She couldn't just walk off and leave her even though the thought did cross her mind. Checking her pulse, Duzy decided she had better act quickly and hurriedly went to the stables to get Ole Devil. She remembered hearing that Lizzie was not in town, so she couldn't get her to help. If she could get her on her horse, she would take her to the orphanage where the good nuns would take care of her. Duzy was back in a few minutes with Pablo, looking white as a sheet, but knowing he had to help Duzy or Angel Outlaw would have his hide for sure. Duzy thanked him and made him promise not to say a word and soon was on her way with Goldie across the back of her horse. The nuns looked stunned, but quickly helped Duzy. They had become to respect Duzy, not only for building the place, but for how she was always coming to check on them to make sure they had everything they needed. They took Goldie in and started to work undressing her to see how badly she was hurt. She was barely alive and unconsious and Sister Mary said that she may or may not make it, but they would do all they could for her. Duzy asked them not to tell anyone that Goldie was there. She didn't know who had hurt her and they may be looking for her to finish the job. The nuns agreed.
Duzy had gotten enough adventure for one night and started to return Ole Devil to the stables when she saw Bennie Gantt walking toward her and her horse. "Damn, what next," Duzy was thinking....here she was in his clothes, with him thinking her dead, and "Hey, who are you, I know that horse and it ain't yours," Bennie said loudly. Duzy got off the horse and walked up to him and putting her hand over his mouth asked him to please be quiet and she would explain everything to him. Duzy could see the blood drain from his face when he looked at her and didn't think he could have talked at that minute if he had wanted to. "It's a long story, so if you will just get on my horse with me, we'll take a ride and I will tell you all about it."
02-22-2006, 04:54 PM
Kid Sopris, Sheriff Alone, and two agents approached the Law Offices of Lawyer Sinn B. Dunn. The office was unlocked and quiet, very unusual for that time of the morning. A breeze blew through an open window in the back office, and the inner door to Lawyer Dunn’s office was ajar.
To the amazement of all laid a slumped over Lawyer Dunn in a pool of his own blood on his desk. His safe had been opened apparently without force. The drawers in the filing cabinets and drawers of his desk had all been ransacked. Bloody foot prints led to the open window, and upon closer examination of Lawyer Dunn, his throat had been cut.
A soiled white linen handkerchief was they only thing left on the floor near the window. No monogram was apparent on the handkerchief, but held the appearance that it was used to wipe a knife blade.
Kid Sopris, left immediately with one agent, leaving one with Sheriff Alone. Sopris almost ran back to the hotel to check on the status of his guarded guests. Upon reaching the second floor in leaps across the steps of the hotel, he found everyone accounted for, except for the fresh blood on the hallway floor and Ms. Duzy disappearance . The other Agents were located and were immediately Questioned by Sopris. All said no sounds were heard and they had just returned from getting some fresh coffee from Nevada Sky.
Sopris left instructions with the other agents to make sure that except for death or dismemberment, they best had stayed with their assigned responsibilities or face swift and immediate retribution for their slackness.
Sopris went looking for Jamison, this time he grabbed the 1878 Colt side by side shotgun, doubled checked the chambers and to make sure everything was ready if need, he cocked the hammers back, and set out like a hound dog on a trail.
Stopping by the Lawyers Office, Sopris informed the Sheriff, that Ms. Duzy was missing, so was one of the hotel ‘s other guest, and there was blood on the floor of the hotel hallway. Sopris grabbed the other agent that was left with Sheriff Alone, from the front of his shirt and Duster starred him direct in the eye and said, “ Listen, carefully, ‘cause I won’t tolerate a second mistake by you ‘office desk fools’, you get your butt over to the hotel , grab your rifle , an extra box of cartridges, don’t stop to drink coffee or pee, get to the livery at once! Now get!”
Sheriff Alone, asked, “Kid where you going and after who?” Sopris said, “There are horse hoofs leaving from the back door of the hotel and are clearly distinguishable by the broken nail in the right front hoof, and they are one of the horses from the livery and they lead someplace, I intend to find out where and with whom!”
With that Sopris turned around like a hoop on wheels, and headed to the livery. He didn’t get far when a young Agent sent to fetch his implements of hostility met him half way. Neither spoke a word.
02-22-2006, 07:39 PM
Bennie listened to Duzy's wild tale and was beginning to wonder if she was just plain crazy; but damn, she was so serious about it that he thought he had better start taking it just as serious! She could have Agent Sopris after her at anytime and things were not looking good if they were found. She had pulled a Presidential pardon out of her, no not hers, but his shirt to prove to him that what she was saying was true. Hell and damnation! What had she gotten them both into? "OK, stop!" Bennie said. "We have to think about this carefully." "Did you cover your trail?" Duzy looked at him and said, "not at first....I wasn't thinking, hell I wasn't doing anything but going for a walk, but I did afterward." "The trail leading to the orphanage and back has been taken care of......but, not since I ran into you!" "I've been too busy trying to make you believe that I am telling you the truth that"....Duzy's voice broke and Bennie pulled her close to him. "Don't worry, we'll take care of it." With that, Bennie proceeded to check out Ole Devil and found the broken nail. Swearing under his breath, he knew that Sopris could very well be close behind them. "What do you have on under my clothes?" Duzy stared at him like he had grown another head and then frankly stated, my bloomers and chemise, what the devil do you think?" "Good, take my clothes off and we will get rid of them. There are some trees over there and we'll use the blanket you have and when they reach us, which I think will be very soon, they will find us...well, enjoying each other's company shall we say?" Duzy actually thought she blushed, but quickly shed his clothing and walked over to the trees with him. Bennie rounded up some sticks and a couple larger pieces of wood and started a fire, quickly burning the clothes to ashes. Knowing the fire would bring the Agents even quicker, Bennie made sure there wasn't any charred peices of clothing and laid down with Duzy on the blanket and pulled her to him. "Now, we have to get our story together....you climbed out of the motel dressed as you are and got your horse where I happened to run into you. Then we rode up here to enjoy the night air." We don't know anything about Goldie....just that you needed some air." "Got it?" "Yes, got it."
In the meantime, Pablo had been questioned relentlessly. He didn't break however, there was no way he would tell on Angel's friend. He kept to his story about being asleep and not hearing anything.
Bennie and Duzy heard horses coming and Bennie pulled her to him and proceeded to kiss her like they didn't have a care in the world.
02-23-2006, 01:23 AM
Duzy was being thoroughly kissed at the moment, but the sound of the horses getting closer made her open her eyes and start watching for whatever was to come. She would hold her head high and not worry about what Agent Sopris thought....HE was the one to hold her captive in her room all day! If he hadn't did that, none of this would have happened and she would promptly tell him so. She liked the Kid and didn't plan to lie to him, but she didn't want to say anything about Goldie yet either. What she did want to tell him was that she was a free woman and wanted to let her friends know that she was alive. She didn't know what his plans for her was and that just didn't set right with her!
The horses were getting closer and were moving fast. It was two men in dark colored clothes and they were riding away from the trees and didn't slow down to see who was burning a fire! Now that was interesting....wonder who they could be and why they were leaving so quickly? Could they have been the ones to stab Goldie?
Duzy turned to Bennie and told him she wanted to get back inside her room and hoped that Agent Sopris had not found her missing. She would get her clothes and go back to Barb's house in the morning or someone would give her a good reason why she couldn't! She realized then that she really did care what Kid Sopris thought of her and how relieved she was that she hadn't had to face him lying half naked in the grass with a man she hardly knew. Bennie could see how she reacted and he took his shirt off and put it over her shoulders as they rode into town. "Damn woman!" Bennie thought, "sure was never a boring moment when they were together. It was one surprise after another and he was looking forward to getting to know all there was to know about Miss Duzy Wales!" Neither of them knew that they were both smiling as they rode quietly back to Slick Rock.
02-23-2006, 02:05 PM
Sopris headed out of town with his agent about ten paces behind, still thundering in his boots from his brief "wake-up” call to attention to details. Sopris rode, reins in left hand, the Colt shotgun, poised and cocked in his right, the butt resting upon his thigh. Sopris watched the tracks lead out of town, slowly he followed and then the tracks disappeared. However, they reappeared coming back into town. Sopris instructed the Agent riding with him to stop where he was, keep his eyes open and don’t move. Sopris investigated further along the trail, but still nothing. Returning to the agent he left behind, they headed back to town, and near the livery they picked up the tracks again and headed out of town in a different direction. Along side those hoofs where two other sets of tracks moving at high rate of speed, as evidenced by the disturbance of the dirt and the clear digging of the hoof's left by fast moving horses.
Once again the trail ended only to be picked up heading back into town. Sopris was not sure what was going on, but he has some keen ideas. Either somebody needed to get out of town for a while, or they wanted him out of town.
Sopris after several hours returned to the livery only to find the suspected horse back in the stall, still wet from a good work out. In checking the saddles left on the stable gates, Sopris found the saddle still wet with perspiration of the horse he was strapped to . The Agent with Sopris sat upon his horse not wanting to interfere, one thrashing a day was enough. Sopris then found a piece of cloth entangled in the rigging of the saddle. Cotton, dark brown in color, and blood droplets, a clue for sure.
Sopris Instructed the Agent to get off his damn horse and look useful, “ What do you expect to find up there?,” Sopris asked. As the agent dismounted, Sopris headed back to the hotel, instructing the Agent to “stay at the livery and report any and all visitors , including those you see coming into town, and try not to look obvious!”
Sopris did not greet anyone in the hotel but instead headed upstairs. First he knocked on Ms. Duzy Wales door, she answered partially covering her silky smooth skin with a blanket. Sopris, removed his hat, “Excuse me, Ms. Wales,” a uncontrollable fear over took her face, “I don’t know where you been, or why, maybe I don’t want to know, but you are here for your own protection , please try and cooperate. It’s all I can do to get those 'City Desk Sitters' to follows instructions, and you don’t help disappearing”. With that, Sopris left Ms. Duzy with a bewildered look upon her face.
She slowly closed the door and watched Sopris head towards Mr. Gantt's room. Sopris knocked on the door, but he wasn’t as near polite, when Gantt opened the door, He was sporting a dark pair of pants in his arm, with a small tear in the seam. Sopris pushed his way into the room, and very sternly , spoke. "Up til now you were of no concern to me! But there is blood on the floor outside your room and I think this fabric“, as Sopris produced the cotton fabric he obtained from the saddle, “matches your pants. Either you talk and do it fast or you will spend the rest of your tenure in Slick Rock behind steel bars!”Mr. Gantt, not used to be shoved around, had Duzy on his mind, and a 12 gauge shotgun in his face. Decided he would come clean.
Sopris listen quietly and carefully and after awhile decocked the shotgun. After about 30 minutes, Sopris stood. Started to leave, stopped and turned towards Mr. Gantt. “Mr. Gantt your romantic intentions towards Ms. Wales is your business, keeping her alive is mind, I would appreciate it if you must see her, do so with a lot more forethought and have the decency to let me know, so I don’t shoot an innocent man.
By the way, thanks for the information on the two riders.” With that Sopris was gone. Mr. Gantt went to the flask in his saddle bags.
After a short visit with the other charges in his protection, Sopris once again asked for their cooperation in staying accounted for, as he looked directly at Ms. Wales, with a look she had never seen the stern lawman portray .
Sopris, thirsty and bewildered and relieved, headed towards the Sheriff’s office to ascertain what had developed in his absence.
Sheriff Alone did not have any more details except the bloody foot print, a blood stained and soild handkerchief and a dead lawyer.. About this the time the Agent left behind at the livery came bursting into the Sheriffs office.
“Mr. Sopris“, the agent called out, “two riders from the West just rode into town on two horses that look well ridden and had worked up a sweat just went into the saloon.” Sheriff Alone watched Sopris re-cock the Colt Shotgun, and head out the door. Sheriff Alone and the other Agent followed. Sopris Stopped the young Agent, "You go back to the livery, I can handle this with the Sheriff”. Then to the saloon the two men headed.
Sopris walked in the front door, Sheriff Alone snuck in the back. As Sopris entered he approached the two thirsty, dark clothed cowboys, with their feet up on a table drinking some rye from a bottle. Upon the sole of the smaller of the two cowboys was a obvious blood stain, about the same size as the print found at the Lawyers office.
Sopris leveled the 12 gauge covering both cowboys, and very slowly spoke with no uncertainty of his orders. “Both of you varmints, slowly drop your gun belts , and don’t stand to do it, then take off your boots..don’t make a stupid move, gentleman, I haven’t had my coffee yet”. With that the cowboys complied. Sheriff Alone came up from behind, Shackled both cowboys and headed them off to jail.
Sopris uncocked the Colt, laid it down and turned to the bartender. “Coffee, Black”
02-23-2006, 02:42 PM
"You did real good, Duzy! Real stinkin' good! What was it you were going to tell that KNOW IT ALL $*&? All that talk about setting him straight and just tell me what the devil happened to your tongue? You stood there like a schoolgirl and let HIM tell you to stay put! I don't understand you at times! The damn man may be trying to protect you, but who the hell asked him to and why didn't you open your mouth and say so??" Duzy was pacing the room again and talking to herself (like she had anyone else to talk to!!). Hell, even Lady LaSalle didn't say a word! That was not like her either! It was obvious the man was used to getting his way, but the only thing he did for Duzy was leave her more frustrated than she was before!
Damn, the man couldn't stay on watch all the time! She wished Lady LaSalle's room overlooked the front and she could slip in there. They had a lot they needed to catch up on and she wanted to see her friend so badly it hurt. She knew Lady LaSalle could read her and she needed that right now...someone she could bounce all the feelings she was having off of who would be honest and frank with her....
02-23-2006, 04:27 PM
Capt Mac arrived at the jail right as the sheriff was putting the young dark clothed cowboys into their cell.
Sheriff Alone- you look like you've been busy - but I need to tell you that Mistress Mikulus has disappeared. Her help told me she was meeting someone in town to ride a horse for her in the race and she never came back.
Well Capt Mac we have lots going down right now with people coming up missing and then reappearing but we have also had a killing. I know I have not seen Ms Mikulus around. Capt Mac added - yep since race time has gotten closer this town has gotten a mean side that is for sure!!
As he turned to walk away he heard one of the cowboys mutter about that dang Gov't agent Kid Sopris....Kid Sopris back in town - thought Capt Mac - thats good.
Hey Sheriff Alone - you nab these guys at the saloon or the livery - Oh Capt Mac at the saloon! Wow good job getting them two alone by yourself - said Capt Mac. Oh no Sir, I have Agent Kid............... oops - as the sheriff turned around realizing his mistake - Capt Mac was headed for the saloon to see if Kid was truely back.
He was worried about Ms Mikulus and that young girl and Seth were nowhere to be found either. Things were getting a mite hot and Capt Mac wanted to know what was going on and make sure the Sheriff and Kid had no objections to Capt Mac traveling heavily armed and staying at the ranch to make sure nothing happened while Ms Mikulus, the young girl and Seth were not to be found.
Capt Mac walked up to the saloon and sure enough there was Kid Sopris. As he called out to Kid.....the sheriff had come a running to try and stop Capt Mac - afraid Kid would not be happy that more people knew of his presence.
Sheriff don't worry about it - Capt Mac insisted and then got Kid's attention....
02-28-2006, 11:53 AM
Sopris Just finished his first sip of coffee, when Capt Mac, came bursting into the Saloon, Yelling out Kid’s name. Sopris, turned towards the voice, with a stern look of non-amusement, Sopris replied, “Do I appear to have any indication of being deaf, Capt. Mac?” and went back to sipping his coffee. Capt Mac continued in a quieter tone, “Mistress Mikulus has disappeared. Her help told me she was meeting someone in town to ride a horse for her in the race and she never came back. Ms Mikulus and that young girl and Seth were nowhere to be found either”.
“Well Capt. Mac”, replied Sopris, “If you were missing, where would you go so you couldn’t be found?” Capt Mac. Stood motionless, confused and perplexed, not really knowing how to answer the Agent. “Listen Capt., There are a lot of unanswered questions right now, and even more about to be asked, Like what’s your interest? Isn’t Seth your responsibility, you brought him here with you, where do you think he got off too? Capt. Mac., either get yourself a cup of coffee, a drink or anything that will keep you quiet for a few minutes while I think”. Sheriff Alone, who followed Capt Mac, came up on the other side of Sopris and pointed to a cup of coffee to the bartender for himself and Capt. Mac.
As the three Gentleman, stood there drinking their coffee a young lad entered the saloon, The Sheriff, was just about to throw the lad out when the young boy spoke, “Sheriff, The pharmacist said he thinks there’s is a problem, two sisters from the Convent just came into to town and got a bunch of bandages and medicine, said he thought you like to know” Sheriff Alone, thanked the lad, and turned to Sopris. “I think I will ride out to the convent, Capt Mac, you want to go?” Sheriff, finished his coffee, and started to leave, Sopris stopped him for a short moment.
“Listen Sheriff, I followed tracks earlier this morning headed in that direction, and then they disappeared. Why don’t you stop over at the hotel and grab Shakey, he’s a good man and a keen nose for trouble. Take Capt Mac, as well, he’s no slouch with a gun. I am going to have another visit with a certain young lady. Let me know what you find.” Sheriff Alone, appeared confused, thinking, trouble at a convent?
With that all three men departed for the hotel, But, Sopris headed directly upstairs. He checked with all the Agents left on guard, and headed for Ms. Wales’ room.
03-03-2006, 12:52 AM
But Duzy wasn't in her room. She had been awakened much earlier by Lady LaSalle and Vickie. They had both been invited to a ball by the The President of the United State's, who was publicly endorsing Lady LaSalle's husband in his Senate race and they were leaving immediately. Duzy hugged her old friend goodbye and shook hands with Vickie. She would miss her friends. The land scam was over and everything was looking good for Lady LaSalle. She and Vickie were as close as ever and Agent's had been sent to excort the ladies. As she turned to go, Lady LaSalle handed Duzy an envelope. Duzy watched them out of sight and then began to open it to see what was in it...
As Duzy walked into the motel she ran into Agent Sopris. "Good, I found you," he stated. Duzy smiled sweetly at him and asked him to please explain himself. "Well, to start with, I am sorry I didn't let you see more of your friends, sometimes I tend to be overprotective.....comes with being an Agent for so long, I guess." Duzy couldn't believe he was actually apologizing when he said "the second thing is that you are going to come clean with me about the night you and Bennie Gantt took your little night time stroll. A lot of things happened during the time you were missing and I tend to find out exactly what it was!!
Bennie Gantt was watching nearby. Ever since Agent Sopris had entered his motel room and put a shotgun to his head, he had been playing close attention to what the man was up to. He may think that it was his business to keep Miss Duzy Wales alive; but, there was more than one way to keep her alive and he figured he was the man for the job. He was not going to trust her life to a man who didn't love her and he sure hoped that wasn't the case!
Duzy said, "Why, Agent Sopris, you are a very suspiscious man! Why don't we just get it over with now. I haven't had anything since breakfast and would love some apple pie and coffee. Would you like to join me?" "OR and looking directly into his handsome, yet stern face and steely eyes, smiled and said, MAYBE, we could call a town meeting and let everyone know that I am alive. I really would love for my friends to stop grieving for me or to scare the daylights out of them by me just showing up alive! After we do that, I will tell you all about my little adventure...." Then Duzy thought to herself, well most of it anyway....she was going to check on Goldie herself before she told anyone about that part of the night. Afterall, she had covered her tracks....
Agent Sopris looked at her sternly and then laughed aloud. "Hell, he didn't have to keep her hidden to keep her alive and he kind of liked her spunk.! He would keep an eye on her though, so she had better not think she could pull something over on him. He had been doing this kind of work too long! About the same time, something that Duzy had heard came into her mind, "once an outlaw, always an outlaw," and she smiled to herself.
03-03-2006, 11:20 AM
Not finding Ms. Wales Sopris headed downstairs, where he did contact Duzy, the conversation was short, to the point and the telegram explained a lot. Sopris told her to leave slick Rock and have a good life, turning towards Mr. Gantt, Sopris stated, “I hope you don’t intend on letting this lovely lady travel alone!” Sopris gently smile at both, shook Mr. Gantts hand and tipped his hat to Ms. Duzy. And with that he gathered the rest of his Agents, and left the Hotel extremely well armed. He still had Warrants to serve.
As he exited the hotel, Sopris was met by Sheriff Alone, who had spotted Mr. Jamison. They all left in direction of Main Street.
Approximately 40 feet to the entrance of the Saloon, they encountered Jamison. Sopris called to Jamison. Mr. Jamison instead of stopping, in an almost like slow motion scene from a dream, Jamison reached inside his jacket. Do to the furtive movement coupled with the non verbal response, Sopris leveled the mule ear shotgun and let go with both barrels. Jamison laid in the street dying. In his right hand was a French pepperbox pistol, cocked and ready to fire. Sheriff Alone kicked the gun from Jamison hand.
Jamison began to give a death bed confession, including his remaining accomplices. Sheriff had two of them locked up. They were attempting to take over the Saloon. The town was to be the new State capitol and Jamison wanted to be in control. Ms. Duzy and others and had to be eliminated, as Duzy could possibly identify him under his other alias name of Frito Bandito.
Sheriff Alone, looked at Sopris, mostly in disbelief that Sopris knew Jamison was going to try and shoot his way out. As Jamison slowly died off, Sheriff Alone explained to Sopris that Goldie was found at the convent recovering from stab wounds from Rebecca.
Seth brought Rebecca to the Sheriff to give herself up. Goldie was not interested in filing charges. No explanation was given.
Seth and Rebecca would leave Slick Rock and have his money forwarded to them in the next town. Seth always wanted to see the Pacific Ocean again and San Francisco was a happening place.
With so much drama and confusion the horse race was cancelled. Order had been restored to Slick Rock. Sopris dismissed the Agents and told them to file their reports with the President after they arrive in Washington.
Before Kid Sopris left town he checked the telegraph off to send his own message to the President. Somber note really. There Sopris learned that the remaining Accomplices with Jamison were none other than Warren Peace, and Kitt E. Liter and the two silk salesmen, The Tocks Brothers, Burt and Butt. It seems the Chief of Police in San Francisco wired the sheriff Alone requesting information on them. They were found dead inside a Gay Steam Bath House in San Francisco. Kid Sopris thought how fitting; they got their’s in the end!
Nevada Skye and Shaky D, had their busy but quiet Hotel returned to normal. Capt. Mac stayed at Ms. Goldie’s side constantly at the Convent while she was recovering. Everybody else was either leaving town or settling down and there seemed to be no further need of Kid Sopris services. Sopris liked Slick Rock, had a lot of promise, and maybe the red head waitress will find the right guy.
Sopris Headed to the livery, saddled his horse and pack horse, recovered all his belongings and left word with the Sheriff, the Banker and the Telegraph Operator, that he will request any other monies due him when he gets where he is going. Sheriff Alone asked“Where is that Kid?” Sopris smiled, and replied, “I don’t rightly know until I get there.” Sopris instructed the sheriff to let the towns people know what when on and that Duzy Wales was very much alive and her death had to be faked to keep her alive.
Sopris then rode slowly out of town to the South, thinking he might want to see Tucson. As he got to the top a ridge over looking the town, he gave one last look to Slick Rock. Then spurring his horse he was gone.
Slick Rock the town that was strong enough to rebuild, determined to overcome and yet still young enough to bring thousands of more
people to her city to start anew.
Friends and readers of Slick Rock. This story has been brought to a close, because the writers, authors and contributors are so dang gum busy sewin’, shootin’ and getting ready for another event, it got too hard too keep it going. All of us enjoyed our fantasy and hope you did too. So until We meet again :
Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It's the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here's a happy one for you.
Happy trails to you until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.
Happy trails to you 'till we meet again.
Happy Trails to you, It’s great to say "Hello”,
And to share with you, the joy we’ve come to know.
It started on the day that we met Jesus…
He promises a life that really pleases.
For a life that’s true,
Here’s a Happy Trail to you!.
(Last verse Courtesy of Happy Trails, Dale Parks, Dale Evans and Roy Roger’s Jr. )
01-13-2007, 12:34 AM
:bump So I can catch up on the pages I missed...before the new story begins...
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