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Aurelian Redmond

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About Aurelian Redmond

  1. Welcome Basket with Cattle

    The man was taking his promised drink from the bucket's dipper, and while he did so, he offered to return her pistol, long as she gave her word not to shoot him. Clara thought that an unnecessary condition but nodded, "I looked at the welcome basket, it is as you said it was. And you did chase those beasts away from the garden....though damage has been done....so you are quite safe from being shot by me. I am quite different than the bloodthirsty sort of outlaws you apparently hung about with." "Also, I would like to point out that a gentleman caller would give a lady his name especially since he now knows hers," she pointed out solemnly. Shade sputtered, nearly snorting the water he'd been swallowing. He hung the dipper back up and looked at the girl, torn between astonishment and amusement. "I'm Shade Harper, owner of Lost Lake Ranch." Technically, he was only half-owner but did not want to set his little niece and nephew up for trouble. Right now, the fewer strangers knew about their situation, even teenaged ones, the better. "The LLR will reimburse you for the damage if you'll draw up an accounting of your losses." Clara frowned when the man almost spit up the water, there was nothing wrong with the well water. "Shade? What kind of name is that?" her usual bluntness came out. As for the accounting, she would handle that part alright, she'd have to write up something very specific. "The kind of name I was given by my mother," Shade retorted good-naturedly. Leaning a hip on the edge of the well's enclosure, Shade studied the girl for several moments, "Since our cattle caused the damage, I can come back in a couple of days and help put things to rights as much as possible." Shade nodded toward the sack laying next to the welcome basket, "We had to slaughter a heifer yesterday that broke its leg. Mrs. Hale sent you the haunch and the hide. It'll keep for a while in a spring house or smoked. I can get it started smokin' for you if you want me too, Miss Redmond." Before Clara could reply to that her attention was distracted by the approach of a buckboard wagon with none other than her father and little brother on it, in the back was a load of freshly chopped wood. Aurelian, of course, had spotted his daughter and some cowboy standing there talking by the well. He could not help but wonder what that was all about. Wyatt no doubt felt the same. "Who's that, Pa?" "I do not know, son. We shall very soon find out I suppose," the man calmly replied. "That is my father, Mr. Harper, it may be a good idea to give me back my father's pistol now," Clara pointed out as the wagon closed on them. "Or maybe I should just hold on to it and give it to your father," Shade replied, raising one eyebrow at the girl, a grin pulling at his lips. "After all, he's not tried to shoot me yet." "You offered to give it to me but fine, go back on your word," the girl shrugged, "And if you mean to get me into trouble, I do not think that will happen." "Hello!" Aurelian called out as he set the brake on the wagon then clambered off the vehicle, Wyatt beat him to it landing in one jump on his feet, his eyes riveted on the newcomer. He stepped toward Shade then, "Good day to you, sir. Do what do I owe the pleasure of this visit of yours?" It did not get by his notice about the Colt Dragoon in the man's possession, sure looked like his piece. He also exchanged a silent glance with his daughter and was relieved she did not seem neither alarmed nor afraid. Shade straightened and gave the older man a respectful nod and tip of his hat. "Hello, sir. I'm Shade Harper from the Lost Lake spread, your neighbor to the west. Mrs. Hale asked me to ferry a welcome basket over for you and your family." He paused and waved a hand toward the meadow beyond the house, "I'm afraid some of our cattle strayed onto your property. I've asked Miss Clara for an accounting of damages." "Mr. Harper," Aurelian nodded back, "They did huh? That'll happen I reckon." He glanced at Clara again, wordless communication between them. Clara nodded affirming the man's version. Fair enough. "Mrs. Hale is a wonderful lady I must say, tell her thanks from us. Clara, we must write her a proper thank you note," he added. "We meaning me," Clara commented dryly. "You have the best penmanship," the father smiled. Pulling the Dragoon from his belt, Shade offered it back to Clara. "This was dropped in the confusion," he added to Mr. Redmond. He would leave it up to the girl to tell her father what she wanted him to know. "I apologize for the trouble, Mr. Redmond." Clara accepted it, of course, a bit of surprise showing on those youthful features of hers, "Thank you." "Rather careless of you, child. Handling firearms is a serious business," Aurelian chided her but in a gentle tone. "Girls," Wyatt grinned, enjoying anything that might embarrass his know it all sister. Clara just forced a wan smile and inwardly seethed. "Oh, Mr. Harper, this is my son, Wyatt, he and I were chopping wood in the treeline out to the west," Aurelian introduced his youngest. Wyatt was a happy go lucky boy and grins came easily to him, quite the opposite of his all too often dour older sister, "Howdy, mister. You sure got a nice horse. And is that one of those Winchester rifles too?" He pointed to the weapon sheathed next to the saddle. Wyatt had a boy's fascination with both horses and guns especially since he didn't own either. "Hello, Wyatt," Shade said affably. "Right on both counts. The carbine is a Winchester 1873. You have a good eye for horses too. That's Lakota, one of the best stock horses I've ever owned. If you ride and it's okay with your father, you can trot him around the yard." He looked at Mr. Redmond with raised eyebrows, asking permission on the boy's behalf. Wyatt looked excited as he glanced up at his father, but Aurelian shrugged, "Thank you for offering, kind of you, but I think I shall have to say 'no' at this time." The boy looked crestfallen but knew enough than to argue with his father. "Wyatt has been on a horse with me on occasion, but he does not really know how to ride yet. That day will come of course but right now I ....we simply cannot afford any injuries or accidents. And you know as well as I, Mr. Harper, there are no guarantees once a person climbs aboard a horse. Even the best ones can get skittish or worse if something goes wrong," Aurelian explained. "Sorry, tiger," Shade said to Wyatt. "Maybe next time I stop by." Wyatt wasn't happy but took it like a man, "It's alright, mister." He sincerely felt bad to have gotten the boy's hopes up. Shade gave a rueful mental shake of his head. Seemed he was putting his foot wrong with every member of this little family. He turned his attention back to the man. "I don't know what Kate sent in the basket, but there's a side of beef in the sack. Had to slaughter a heifer yesterday that broke her leg. Smoked or dried, it should last awhile." "Oh, well, some more generosity. I appreciate it, we can certainly use the food, to be honest. God willing, come this time next year we shall be quite self-sufficient but in the meantime, starting over like this......well, it is certainly a challenge. One we will weather, isn't that right, children?" Aurelian declared. Wyatt just nodded, still wishing for that horse ride, but Clara gave a confident, "Yes father." "So your place then...what direction is it from here?" Aurelian asked. "What little of our boundary butts up to your property line is slightly north and west. If you follow the road west past your gate, you come to our main gate," Shade answered. "Guess I better get those cows moving. I'll have some of our hands look for the break in the fence and get it mended. Sorry for the trouble." "Ahh, I see," Aurelian nodded at his directions then waved his hand in dismissal, "No apology needed. We can't help where animals choose to wander. Thank you for coming to fetch them...and bringing us Mrs. Hale's kind gifts." Aurelian had his pride, but he decided he wasn't going to turn down the man's offer to have the ranch fix the break in the fence, he had enough other things to do with this still new property. Catching Lakota's reins, he led the horse a couple of feet away so that it wouldn't walk on anyone as he mounted. Grabbing the saddle horn, he pulled himself partway up and slipped his foot into the stirrup, settling easily into the saddle. "Miss Clara, I'll come back by for the accounting of damages in a day or two. If you folks need anything, please let us know." "Yes, Mr. Harper, I will have it ready, and it will be a fair accounting," Clara assured the man. "Bye!" Wyatt smiled as he waved. Once the cowboy was out of hearing, Aurelian remarked, "Right nice fellow as is Mrs. Hale. Seems we have found ourselves some good neighbors." Clara gave a shrug, "He's....................alright....I suppose."
  2. Checking Out the Town

    Aurelian paused upon entry to take a moment to give the store interior a bit of a once-over. It was quite reasonably stocked, things appeared tidy enough, the floor was swept, that all spoke well for the quality of the ownership. Now if the man was just the understanding sort that not everyone could pay for things upon purchase. Meanwhile, Clara swept right past him down the first aisle, already engaging in some visual shopping for needed goods. She'd do her usual diligent job, of that he had no doubts. At the moment no one was behind the counter, didn't mean much though he could be in a back room or showing a customer something out of sight for a bit. The bell tinkle would have notified whoever was working there were more customers. Aurelian wasn't in a rush anyhow as he now ambled deeper into the shop. There was a distinguished looking woman looking over some fabrics who had given him a smile when he first entered so he felt pretty comfortable gambling she would not mind the intrusion from a stranger. Removing his hat, he smiled, "Excuse me, ma'am. Sorry to bother you but I'm new to town. Would you be able to tell me who and where the proprietor of this store is? I'd be grateful." Kate looked up from the bolt of cloth she had been considering. The twins always needed new clothes. She saw that it was the stranger that had spoken to her and she smiled at him again, "Neil and Sarah Goodman own the store. They are probably in the stock room. Just ring the bell on the counter." Feeling a twitch on her skirt made Kate remember her manners, "I am so sorry! I'm Kathryn Hale. Everyone calls me Kate. My husband, Ezra, is the foreman at Lost Lake Ranch." Kate indicated the small boy peeking out from behind her skirts, "This is Cody Harper and this..." she glanced around and frowned. "I am Nettie!" Cody's twin stepped out from behind a bin of hardware cloth. She looked up at the stranger, "Cody is my twin. He's shy. He calls me Nettles. So does Uncle Ezra and Aunt Kate. But I'm not a nettle. Those sting and I don't sting. My real name is Antoinette. She's a dead queen. Did you know her?" "Nettie!" Kate was torn between laughing and the need to discipline the little girl. The woman was immediately helpful with her advice then introduced herself. "Pleasure to meet you, Mrs. Hale. I am Aurelian Redmond and the young lady down that aisle over there is my daughter, Clara," he responded then listened to the jabber of the little ones with a growing smile. His were that young once, and these two were cute. Putting his hands just above his knees he put himself a bit closer to the children as he spoke to them in an easy tone. "Hello, Cody. And hello to you, Nettie. As for that queen, she was a bit before my time and in a country far far from my home, but I do happen to know they say she loved cake. What about you then, do you love cake?" "I like cookies better," Nettie told the man and then pointed at Cody where he stood holding Kate's hand, "Cody likes pie." "I am sorry about that, Mr. Redmond. Afraid Nettie's never met a stranger. Are you new to Kalispell?" Kate asked, having offered a friendly smile to the young lady that had been introduced as Clara. She knew most people in the region, but new folks came in all the time. Kate always made it her task to see that people were greeted and could count on the men and women of Lost Lake Ranch to help them when they needed it. She and Mary would have a ton of work to do to get together a welcome basket for the new family. Aurelian paused grinning long enough to dismiss her worries, "Nothing to apologize for. The youngsters just have their opinions is all. We all have our likes and dislikes when it comes to food." Then he looked down at the twins once more, "Cookies are fine. I definitely am with Cody on the pie. My Clara makes wonderful pie." As for Clara, she was too far off and caught up in her silent appraisals of necessaries for the shopping to even notice Mrs. Hale's smile to her. Just then an older gentleman stepped out of a back room and behind the register, his eyes taking in who all might be in the store. Since Clara was the closest, he fixed upon her first trying to place the young miss without success. Clara, of course, spotted him back and approached with her usual confidence. "Good day, sir. We.........that is...my father would like to talk to you for a moment....that is when he can tear himself away from his current conversation," she declared then glanced over to Aurelian chatting with that woman and the small children in tow. Kate nodded toward the counter, "It was a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Redmond. It looks like Mr. Goodman is back." She had wanted to find out more about the man and his daughter. Not to be nosy, but to make plans to visit them with her usual welcome basket. She would make a point of asking where they lived once he'd concluded his business with the store's owner. "Ah yes, I see. Mr. Goodman...very well. I better get over there before Clara gets her claws into him," Aurelian smiled then glanced down at the twins, "You two be good now." "Thank you, Kate, for your help. Nice to meet you and I'm certain we shall be seeing each other around town on occasion," he replaced his hat then and took his leave of the woman. He had some very serious business to attend to. ~*~*~*~*~*~ It took awhile, and though Aurelian found Mr. Goodman to be a most decent sort, the fellow was still a businessman and was not about to stay in business by making poor gambles. This was the storekeeper's livelihood and extending too much credit to many folks who rebound to hurt him financially, Aurelian got it. He had to use all his charm and logic and even threw in an appeal to his kindness to get Goodman to agree to let his first purchases be on credit. Aurelian listened then to the man's conditions for payment and judging them fair, there followed a handshake deal. With that, he turned his highly motivated and efficient daughter loose on the store. It was a good beginning, a crucial first hurdle but there remained a lot of hard work and necessary good fortune to make this new life of theirs, him and his children.
  3. Checking Out the Town

    Originally published on Mon Dec 11th, 2017 @ 3:36pm It was a warm one again but then it was July after all as two of the three Redmond family walked down the boardwalk of Kalispell. They had already made one stop, Aurelian introducing himself to the school marm and presenting his a bit reluctant youngest, Wyatt, to the woman as a first step in enrolling the boy into school. Wyatt was even now still there, taking a few simple tests for the teacher so she could judge how to better place him among her current class of students. They, Aurelian and his daughter Clara, would swing by and pick him up the way out of town once they had their own business taken care of. "So while I almost dread to ask, what do you think of the town so far, child of God?" Aurelian glanced down upon his daughter keeping easy pace with him on their boardwalk stroll. The girl gave a nonchalant shrug that was so typical of her, joyous enthusiasm was not something Aurelian ever much witnessed in her even before her mother's death. "It will have to do. It is no Scranton," she huffed. "You did not like Scranton you always said," he pointed out bemused. "It was in the main............unpleasant, but that was mostly the people," Clara countered. "Well, Clara dear, learn to get along with people here because remember we are staying here now long term. This is our home like it or not," Aurelian reminded. "I know.............I can be pleasant............most of the time," Clara grudgingly conceded. Aurelian didn't press the issue especially as they were getting closer to their current target, the town's General Store. They needed things there, a wide variety of things but there were issues. Being newcomers, establishing a line of credit might prove.....well, challenging. But Aurelian was down to little more than coins to his name. Clara had long been saving for a personal desire of hers, a horse of her own but now she was tempted to dip into that even though her father had not mentioned a word. But even then it wasn't a whole lot, less than $40.00 at her last count. "Very well, Clara, glad we are squared away on that point," he smiled then abruptly got down to business, "Now you let me handle the storekeeper when we get in there. And in return, I will let you be in charge of the purchasing if he allows it. I know you will watch our every penny and spend wisely, I trust you." "Oh I will, and I will demand..." she started. "Ask for," he hastily corrected. "ASK for a receipt of our purchases then double check. It would not be the first time some clerk could not manage simple addition," she asserted. Aurelian grinned, pity the poor clerk who got into a tangle with Clara over figures.
  4. Starting All Over Yet Again

    Originally published on Sat Dec 9th, 2017 @ 7:07pm It had been a long day and a warm one also but then it was July after all. The family had been hard at work since morning arrival at the cabin of their new property. Aurelian had been very pleased with the structure itself, the cabin had been well built especially important in that Montana supposedly had brutal winters. The former owners had started on a well too, but since there was a nice lake very close, water was less of an issue he figured. There was also a chicken coop and then little more than a shed, but it would house the milk cow and the three horses he owned. Two of the horses were used for the buckboard and could also pull a plow. The other was for riding. After all, every man in Montana needed a horse, least that was his belief. The cow and the chickens came with the place as the couple gave him a more than fair price on them given they were heading back East on a train and had no further use for such. All things considered, as far as animals they were well enough off but it was still going to be a struggle to make this place a go, and he knew it. They lacked so many things even over and above their lack of funds. Their clothes and most personal belongings had been destroyed or stolen in the Indian attack. Only by the generosity of a few kind locals in the last community did he and the children have at least two sets of clothing to wear. More wardrobe would have to come later when he had some purchasing power, and he did not want to even think about the winter to come. Clara was fixing some beans at the fireplace, an actual stove was a luxury he could only dream of now. He had traded his old cavalry saber for some tin plates and a handful of cutlery, three cups. Again for now it would have to do. There was plenty of forest about, and he already planned on putting meat on the table by doing some hunting. Even on the way out here, they had seen enough deer about. All his thoughts and worries were suddenly interrupted by a familiar voice. "Pa, supper's ready," it was his boy, Wyatt, a smallish skinny lad who was always hungry it seemed. "Very well, then might as well sit down and eat it," Aurelian smiled as he took a few steps to the small wood slat table and sat down. Clara brought the small pot over to them and dished out three heaping helpings onto the tin plates then joined them at the table. "We are going to need quite a few things at the store, Father. We cannot live on beans. The Sidwells did not leave us much of anything," Clara pointed out. "We have a roof over our heads and a cow and chickens, be thankful for what we have, child of God," Aurelian smiled as he waited until Clara was seated and comfortable then glanced over to his son, "Your turn to lead us in prayer." Wyatt paused, "You sure?" Clara frowned, "Oh just do it. Honestly, you are so forgetful." The prayer was simple and short, and soon they were eating. Mouth half full of beans, Wyatt piped up after a moment, "So are we going into ...what is it called....tomorrow?" Clara sighed, "Chew, swallow then speak. And it is Kalispell." Aurelian had pondered the best plan of action and had already decided, "Yes, we will....all of us together." "But what about here?" the boy asked immediately. "Would you suggest we leave someone behind for the Indians to pick off by his lonesome?" Clara countered in that annoyed tone of voice of hers. Aurelian raised one hand, he had to do that a lot to head off those two and their bickering. It was never serious, but it was definitely something he could do without most times. "Now, now....Clara is right. As usual, might I say," he flashed a grin at her. That brought a smile, a slight smile to his daughter who then forked some beans into her mouth. "We stick together and don't worry about Indians coming here. The cabin has around now for what....the Sidwells said they built it over a year ago and no Indians have come to burn it down. It'll be fine. Besides, will give all three of us the chance to look the town over. We only rode thru it twice and once was at night. We will need to know where places are after all," he reasoned. "They have a schoolhouse," Clara announced, looking straight at her brother whose turn it was to frown. "Awww, I don't hafta go, do I?" he didn't ask his sister for he knew her answer, his pleas were to his father. "Oh yes, you do!" Clara smirked. "We will see, children. We will see. I need you both for all the work we have to do here yet. But down the line, yes, I want you to attend school, son," Aurelian declared, and his son knew well enough to know whining or arguing about it wouldn't work. "What about Clara?" Wyatt added. "I do not need school. I imagine I know as much as any schoolmarm they have managed to secure for that leafy burg," Clara contended with her usual self-confidence. Thing is Aurelian couldn't argue. She was fifteen now, and he believed she pretty much knew all she would ever need to when it came to educational subjects. "Clara is correct, she doesn't have to go," he pronounced much to Clara's satisfaction.

About Sagas of the Wild West

Sagas of the Wild West is a roleplaying game set in the American Wild West. It is based on the classic television and movie westerns of the 1950s, 1960s, and early 1970s. The stories evolve around the women and men in a fictional version of Kalispell, Montana.

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