Stands 5'10", lean of build with dirty red hair, a scraggly beard of a lighter shade, brown eyes.
Pike wears a double-breasted white leather swallow tail coat, which resembles his Civil War frock coat over a nondescript grey shirt. For trousers, he wears Mexican style Vaquero trousers of a supple dyed red roughout leather, with silver buttons running the length of his legs.
He wears crossed gun belts with a pair of 4 3/4 .44 Smith and Wesson Russian pistols.
Traits & Characteristics
Fair and honest. (+)
Tough when trouble comes. (-/+)
True to his given word or handshake. Rides for the brand. (+)
When forced is merciless. (-)
Barnabas Pike earned the nic-name "Pronto" from his oldest brother Sam due to his quick temper. However, somewhere along the line the war and subsequent life experiences seasoned his temper, enabling him to hold it in check.
Though good with his guns, he never killed a man he had not forewarned.
Known as a top hand, but also for his tenacity in all matters. A man to have on your side when push comes to shove. However, he can be friendly. Actually responsive in a positive manner to those he considers friends, which historically has been few. The other side of that coin would be that Pronto could be lethal when called upon to defend his friends, the man he rides for or the company that employs him without hesitation.
None at this time
Above average cowhand. Excellent horseman. Top teamster. Above average tracker.
Cow Puncher, Former Pony Express Rider, former Confederate Calvary Officer, former Texas Ranger "Minuteman," former Shotgun Guard, Hired Gun
Pike is deadly with either handgun.
Aliases / Nicknames
Place of Birth
Kith & Kin
| FAMILY |
Father: John Henry Pike ~ deceased
Mother: Martha Anne Jackson (Pike) ~ Deceased
Samual Dirk Pike
Silas James Pike
Sister: Maryanne Marie Pike
Pronto's parents were killed by Indians, his brothers and sister had vanished upon his return from the war.
|NON-FAMILIAL CONNECTIONS |
None at this time, new in town.
None at this time, but, it's early yet.
1843 ~ 1853
Barnabas was born into a family of five, a sister a year older than he, two brothers, one four, Silas and one six, Samuel. The Pikes had a fair sized ranch outside Crockett Texas where John Pike raised cattle and farmed some. Barnabas' childhood was about normal for the time period, with the exception of his temper which showed up about the age of five.
He was in the saddle by six, and a fair hand by the age of ten. Fighting Indians. He was fearless, fighting his brothers regularly, most times in defense of his sister, who he loved dearly.
1854 ~ 1859
During this period Pronto learned more of weapons handling and usage against not just the Comanche and Apache, but desperados from both sides of the border. Also during this span, it was becoming clear, Barnabas Pike was a rider to be reckoned with. He was winning most of the races he entered. And, at local contests his roping, bronc riding skills were hard to beat. Aside from his temper, he was becoming the man his father and brothers wanted. But there was trouble brewing, trouble that would divide a nation, and many a family.
Talk of secession was spreading throughout the South. John Pike was against the war solely because taking the men meant the homestead would be left undefended. Neither waring tribes were at bay. But for seventeen-year-old Barnabas Pike, it was exciting, the chance for fame and glory.
1861 ~ 1865
Of an evening, Barnabas rode out to meet a group of young men headed for Saint Louis Missouri with the plan to join the Confederate army. But life has a way of changing plans for folks. Seeing a sign in a window advertising for wiry young men to ride for the fledgling Pony Express.
Within three days he was riding out of Saint Louis for a place called San Francisco California. A long arduous task of riding, changing mounts and riding. Day and night, in any weather. But he loved it. Even the close calls with hostiles.
On his return trip, disaster struck, outside Carson City, Utah Territory, when his mount tumbled down a ravine and Pronto was seriously injured. He hobbled into a settlement called Mormon Station (Genoa) where he recuperated and when fully mended, returned to Texas to join the Confederate Army. He ran into some recruits from the 8th Texas Cavalry, known as Terry's Texas Rangers, and immediately fell in with them, joining the next morning.
The Terry Rangers distinguished themselves at the battles of Shiloh (April 6–8, 1862), Perryville (October 8, 1862), Murfreesboro (December 31, 1862–January 2, 1863), Chickamauga (September 19–20, 1863), and Chattanooga (November 24–25, 1863); in the Atlanta campaign (May 1–September 2, 1864); and as raiders in Kentucky and Tennessee under Lt. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest. The Rangers were also part of the inadequate force under Gen. Joseph E. Johnston that attempted to slow Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman's inexorable "march to the sea" during the final months of the war. Terry's Rangers delivered what was probably the last charge of the Army of Tennessee at the battle of Bentonville (March 19–20, 1865). Rather than surrender with the rest of Johnston's army at Durham Station, North Carolina, on April 26, 1865, 158 of the reported 248 survivors of the regiment slipped through Union lines to join other Confederates yet in the field. With the total collapse of the Southern cause, however, the Terry Rangers drifted home as individuals and in small groups, having never officially surrendered.
1865 ~ 1875
1865 returning to Texas after the war he found the family ranch burned and his parents killed by Comanches. Though he could well have restarted the ranch, Pronto drifted and joined the Texas Rangers as a "Minuteman." He took a job as a shotgun guard with Waddell and Mitchell, freighters out of Lampasas, Texas.
Tiring of that in 1866 he drifted west into New Mexico and Arizona working as a cowboy as he went. He hired on as a wrangler for a small ranch embattled against a much larger spread which lasted some three months before he rode out, after shooting three men for rustling cattle. He signed on in Colorado, then Montana, and finally Utah as a wrangler with a gun, and all of these riding jobs were concerned with range wars. He worked in Utah for grub, ammunition and a saddle. Then he rode the grub line south into Nevada.
By the fall of 1870 Pronto arrived in Virginia City Nevada. He hired on with the Sheriff's Office as a deputy. The job was all but uneventful, at least in contrast to his recent past. He met Julia Dey who taught fifth grade at the 4th Ward School at the south end of town. He resided for a brief period at the International Hotel before obtaining a cabin just south of the Divide, an area between Virginia City and Gold Hill. A quarter of a mile from the school where Miss Dey taught.
He and Julia became more than friends and were engaged on Christmas Eve of 1871. Their plans were to marry in the late spring, but pneumonia took her life in mid-February. Pronto stayed on and developed a taste for poker. It was during one of these forays at the Delta Saloon that his luck changed dramatically.
Holding three deuces, Pronto Pike bucked the odds and won a one-third share in the Yellow Jacket Mine. Knowing that the Yellow Jacket employed "security men," it would only be a short time before they came calling to reclaim his one-third ownership. He registered his share and went directly to the Yellow Jacket offices in Gold Hill, where he laid out his warnings to Captain T.G. Taylor, the mine superintendent. Pike continued to work as a deputy and the Yellow Jacket quietly paid his one-third share into the Wells Fargo Bank. By the middle of March Pronto had strapped on this chaps, turned in his badge, and rode off to the west and the promise of a new start in California.
California was not the future he had hoped for and so he rode the grub line south-east into Arizona where his knack for finding range problems got him hired on with a small outfit outside of Tombstone, an up and coming mining camp.
Pronto's guns came into play and on several occasions leaving a pair of outlaws dead and three others wounded. He became a marked man over the incident and was on guard the two and one-half months he stayed on.
1874 ~ Present
Pike drifted north again. Retracing his back trail to Virginia City. He stayed on the Comstock long enough to visit Julia's grave, pay his respects around town then down to Gold Hill. Captain Taylor received him cordially and tipped him of a big strike in Montana. But he had no desire to ride that far north, but Captain Taylor also told him of an up and coming quiet little town in that same Montana, Kalispell. Pronto turned his horse north.
Possible the 8th grade Languages Spoken:
English, some Spanish, Apache, and Comanche
A hammerhead roan, Chestnut with white flecks
Hammerhead - A stubborn mean-spirited horse
Roan - Having a chestnut, bay, or sorrel coat thickly sprinkled with white or gray
Pronto Pike, gunfight reenactor. Partially stolen from Louis L'Amour's character of the same name in the novel Hanging Woman Creek. The first one of his I read.
His 1/3 share from the Yellow Jacket mine paid handsomely. And the payments, now transferred to the Kalispell bank, made Barnabas Pike a wealthy man by any standard, yet the wealth failed to change him.
"There you have it!" Emeline declared with a laugh, "Bridget will help with the cooking, and Barnabas can try our efforts to make certain that they are as good as they should be." Then she added with a playful grin, "And Mr. Pike can do the dishes as well, he's quite the expert at that!"
“Man need ta have his options. Dish washin’ mine, when my hands’er too slow for gun work.” He winked an nodded. “Yes sir. Options.”
She laughed again and gave Barnabas a quick kiss on the cheek. "Or you can just make certain that we behave ourselves and don't burn down the kitchen!"
“Reckon I can handle that as well. Some don’t appreciate taste testers. Sorta an art form, down Persidio way. Texas.” He stood straight, face straight, then he looked at Em. “Didn’t know I was fully trained, did’ja?”
Then she patted Bridget on the arm. "Don't worry one bit, we will have fun, we won't do any harm, and we can make whatever you like...well, so long as I know the recipe!"
Then she pointed at Pronto, as if to say ‘Can he join in too, please?’ She liked his beardy face and kindly manner toward her.
Pronto smiled, “I’m afraid I’m all thumbs when it come to bakin’ most anything. Heck My biscuits come out so hard was I to throw one, it’d knock out a grown man. But I’d be delighted to sample what you ladies were to bake.”
Pronto was not quite sure about the point the girl was making, other than the speed of the dance, which he agreed was fast. “It is that Miss, perhaps a bit too fast for everyone, but then, there are those as we can all see, that enjoy the fast dance.”
He acknowledged that there was something not quite right with the young lady, and in that acknowledgment, he endeavored to pay closer attention to what she was saying, that he might have a clearer understanding of her meaning.
"It'll be fine," she declared, "I'm looking forward to all of this, and I'm not afraid, either of being alone nor facing what comes." Of course, he would know that of her, she wasn't one to shrink back, but would face what she had to.
“This life’s jest chock fulla surprises, sometimes good, sometimes not so good.” He said, smiling. “We’ll just meet it head on and see what gives. First thing though, seein’ all this wild life about, we’ll do no shooting here, buildin’ll be enough noise for these critters, though they’ll know the differ’nce between hammerin’ and gunfire. Won’t have the same echo. Animals are right savvy about such things, ‘specially that.”
“You’ll be just fine. It’ll be hard, yes, on both’a us that’s sure, but we’ll make out.” He assured her. “I cain’t leave Speed I a lurch. Maybe Hannah Cory’s tough enough for what’s likely comin’ over this hospital, but I’d not be willin’ to chance it.”
Present: Emeline, Barnabas, Bridget, but not Brendan (or Barnaby)
"A stroll it is. The table will see to itself, folks are free to take what they like." With the table well-stocked, it wouldn't need attending, and Emeline embraced the idea of a stroll in the cool evening. "I like the town at night, when it's dark and quiet." Well, that would be several hours from now, but there was something special about the stillness and the lights in windows. Of course, Barnabas didn't need to know that she occasionally roamed the streets at night.
“A turn around the floor an’ see who’s here an’ mebee who’s not’d be good. I thought Fer sure I saw Speed, an’ he was with Leah Steelgrave, of all the wimmen in town.” Pronto stated, not that he had a problem with the Steelgrave woman, but he wasn’t sure of the reception she might get.
Just the same, with everyone having such a grand time, he doubted there would be much of a problem, if there was one at all.
Then Bridget and Barnaby come back from their dance to have some cookies, and the couple was accosted by Arabella, eager to dance with Barnaby.
"Just a moment," Emeline whispered, squeezing Barnabas' hand, "I don't want to leave Bridget alone, she's..." Well, there wasn't much of a delicate way to say it. "She's sweet...maybe I'll dance with her, if you don't mind?
“Mind? Ain’t no reason ta mind why you wimmen-folks do that all the time. So, sure. I don’t mind one bit, I’ll just guard the cookies. Proper job for a Deputy such as myself.” Pronto observed. It was common place for women to dance with on another without a second thought, sometimes due to the lack of male partners, other times on a whim.
Although Arabella had brutally dragged Brendan off, Bridget still stared wistfully after him. She couldn’t even take her eyes off him enough to look at the table, and had to just feel for her next cookie with her hand. The plate now had more empty patches than cookie covered, but she soon found one and started to demolish it, burying the ache of longing in her stomach with sweet, sweet food, in the age-old trusted manner of many a lovesick soul.
What did get her attention was the approach of the Pie Lady. She turned to kindly, pretty woman and then glanced behind her: the handsome beardy man with the nice shiny badge was there, too. Arabella had told her to explain to anyone who asked her that she couldn’t dance the fast dances due to a ‘slight indisposition’: a word that the simple girl couldn’t pronounce, let alone remember, so she leaned into Emeline and whispered “A can’t dance … not aloud fast uns.”
Barnabas watched as the one called Bridget whispered to Emeline, one of those girlie things he thought to himself, know how women would often share their ‘secrets’ in these sorts of situations. Probably had to do with a man, likely the one called Brenden, whom he didn’t know, but seemed nice enough.
Then, realizing that he might need to know as well, but was too far away to hear her, she looked over to Shiny Badge and shook her head, mouthing the words “Can’t dance” and pointing to her legs. Then she looked between the two of them, smiling amiably while munching on the cookie.
Barnabas was taken aback by the young woman’s confession and was startled when she pointed to her legs, which could mean any number of things too personal to divulge to a man other than her husband or betrothed.. “Dang” He responded. “Sorry to hear that, me, I ain’t real good at it either, al’ays steppin’ on the lady’s feet.” Which was a untruth meant to comfort the woman. He actually loved to kick up his heels, and yes, time to time he did step on the lady’s feet. Not that his were immune, consequence of the dance.
And now that young Clara and Charlie had found the dance floor, it was up to them what they would do next, of course with Pronto is was anything would be fine.
"So, now that that's taken care of, shall we dance more? Or perhaps stroll around and make sure everyone is behaving?" Well, if trouble started, it was likely to be loud and obvious!
“Well, strollin’ around or dancin’, eithers fine with me. May a bit of both as the dance is young yet an’ the place ain’t really jumpin’ yet, so maybe we oughtta stroll about afore the place is to crowded ‘round the edges to do that.” He took her hand and let her step out first, giving her the choice.
"It's quite fun," Emeline agreed, glancing up at Barnabas then back to Clara. "And now that we're here to watch the table, you can try for yourself."
“That’s what we came for. To have us some fun. An’ I gotta say these here cookies you and Em done up are real, real good!” Proto stated, with a wide grin
Well, except that the dance was over, thought Clara but of course that was just the first of many. Clara shrugged and spoke softly to the woman, "It takes two of course."
Suddenly Charlie spoke up and came out with it, "Forgive me for not asking you before but would you like to dance? I'm not asking 'cause I have to, it 'cause I want to as the thought had crossed my mind but I wasn't too sure of what your response would be considering."
"Oh," Clara slowly nodded, "Well, since you are asking if I would like to dance, the answer is - yes I would. Now if you are asking if I would accept an offer from you to dance, the answer is once more - yes."
"In fact, I would be delighted to dance with you, Charlie Wentworth," she actually smiled.
"Get on out there an kick up yer heels! We'll hold down the for for ya!" Pronto added. The kids deserved to have their fun, not that he was so old as to pass on a good time, but he could wait.
“Most animals will fight shy of humans, but there’s always the exception to the rule.” Barnabas explained. “Never sure about cougars, and fer sure, bears are trouble. So a rifle by the door’ll discourage man and beast. A good shotgun handy just to be sure ain’t a bad idea either.”
The floor plan gave a good field of fire from most rooms, but especially from the main room. Interior shutters of thick wood with rifle ports were on every window for defensive purposes, and to keep out the majority of the cold as well.
Not just wild animals, but Indians who were notional at best, and white men who could be worse. Although with the addition of a couple hands right off might be a good idea, was his thinking..
As Barnabas guided them away from Addy and Jay, Emeline grinned. "Did you see the look on her face? I never did think I'd see Addy the stage driver looking so...smitten!" It was sweet, really, and she wished them luck. At least she knew that Addy wasn't going to fall for some gent because of a sweet word turning her head. "Good lord help the young man!"
Barnabas nodded, then said, “That’d be a women who deserves some real happiness.” He didn’t know the gent in question, but from what he’d see so far, he seemed nice enough, but then so did Cullen Baker.
She laughed, and as the music stopped, she kissed Barnabas on the cheek. "I need to check the table, can I bribe you with free cookies?" Even though Clara was here, she didn't want the girl doing all the work, Clara needed to relax and enjoy herself.
“Yes ‘um, you can shorely do that. Seein’s I know where they come from, and I’d be a fool to turn that down. He responded to the bribe. “Better make that a gift, bribery’ll likely get me fired.” Then he laughed. Like anyone would even notice.
"Is there a way we can run water up there for it, so it doesn't have to come down here?"
Pronto almost laughed, envisioning one of them carrying a bucket up to it. “Ah, I doubt it’d be appreciated. It’ll sort of shy away from us and mosey on down at it’s leisure.” He explained instead. “It’s kinda about sharing. He was here first. But, us movin’ in up here, it’ll move off ‘til there’s stock, then things’ll change some. We’ll need to put it down.”
Of course, there was plenty of water to be had, and not all that close to where the house and buildings were going to be. "We'll have to get a couple of dogs," she declared, "Buster's a great cat, but I'm afraid he won't bark loud enough to warn us when we have visitors!"
“Yeah, Buster ain’t gonna scare off no cougars, nor any other critters what might show up. But yeah, a couple dogs’ll be of help.” He agreed
Sagas of the WIld West is a roleplaying game set in a fictionalized version of the town of Kalispell in Montana territory. Our stories begin in 1875 and are set against the backdrop of actual historical events.Sagas was inspired by the classic television and movie westerns. Our focus is on writing, storytelling and character development.
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