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.
Dish washer at the Lickskillet Cafe, Deputy Town Marshal
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
Boarding House, building a ranch
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.
Seated and looking out at the view of the harbor he smiled at the thought of a maitre'd at the Lickskillet. "Now about the wine, don't know a whole lot about 'em, 'cept some say white wine and still others say red, depending on what fish we're havin'. 'course now, I don't drink much, so I could care less about it, but if you're a mond to, we'll jest ask."
He opened the menu and began to peruse the entrées listed. "See anything that tickles yer fancy?" He asked, then added, this her 'Captain's Platter' seems a good choice. Several kinds of sea food on it." He was not much on sea food, he had tried clams up on the Comstock one time, and was not to fond of them. Barnabas Pike was a meat and potatoes sort. Beef steaks! However, he was game to try the varieties that this platter offered. Some he had never heard of.
"Surprises are al'ays good, unless they ain't, and I only deal in them good'uns! 'specially for you. Now, about eatin' well, I figger we'll just head over't that there sea food joint an' give 'er a try." He said, taking her hand. "That upstairs restaurant, what was it, 'The Blue Fin,' whatever that is, that'd be the place to eat."
So far it had been quite the day, both of them outfitted with new clothes, taking a walking tour of the local area. He was pleased with himself. They had gotten word out to Kalispell as well, and to him, that was just as important for him as for Em but she needed to let Clara know where she was, and that she was fine. He simply felt the need to let Speed know things were good and safe. There would be more wires to send as the traveled.
They stopped in front of the Blue Fin, "Well? Shall we?"
"That sounds like a wonderful plan and I'm famished!" Taking his hand, she laughed as she fell in step beside him. "I'll have to take care what I eat so I'll fit in those dresses. Oh, and Miss Eleanore recommended a shop in San Francisco that can make dresses that can be adjusted as the baby grows."
"Dang, I ain't never heard'a such a thing, we'll need ta look into getting a couple a them at least, maybe more. Adjustable clothes. What'll they think of next?"
Her free hand went to rest on her belly and she leaned against Barnabas, a small smile on her face. "I'm so happy, and I can't wait to meet our child. By then, the ranch should have a good start and we'll be settled in the house." So long as fate treated them kindly, the future was something to look forward to.
"See now, that was what this is all about, us seein' some sights, and you bein' happy. Happy about ever'thing. As far a meetin' our child, now that there's gonna be more special than anything I ever done, 'cept maybe meetin' you. That was was about as special as it gets ya know."
A child, a child of his, not something that had seen in his future until he met Emeline. Not something he considered to be a part of his life, and her talking of a number of them. Well, they could do that. The money that came in from the mine, well that would make life easy living. It would allow them to grow the ranch and the family in relative comfort. So long as the silver didn't peter out they would be a lot more than just fine.
Barnabas watched as Em scrawled out her message for the operator, thinking of what he would say to speed, then he smiled as Em finished and the operator began tapping out the message, traveling over the wire to Kalispell. Hardly a new concept as the telegraph had been around since 1830, in various states of development and usage.
Once the operator was finished he stepped \up to the counter and scrawled out his message to Speed Guyer, "Got us here to Portland. Taking a steamship to San Francisco, then on to Virginia City by train. See you when we get home. Pike." He pushed the paper to the man and waited. He would add the "stops" as he had for Em, and then he'd settle up.
"Sir, both wires come to-"" Pike pointed to the paper, the man nodded and wrote the cost on a blank message form. Pike handed him two double eagles ($40.) and held up his hand as if to say 'keep the change.' A hefty tip.
"On their way Em, let's us have some lunch an' then see the sights. Maybe make our reservations on the steamer." He offered.
"Oh, yes, I'd like to let Clara know we got here safely," Emeline comment, "I can write her a letter and post it before we leave, but yes, a quick cable is a good idea." It would take a letter several days to get to Kalispell, but a cable would be much faster, and she wanted Clara to know they were all right.
"We'll just walk on over there and send a wire. Need to let Speed know where we are." He said with a smile. "You happy with the dresses? Got all the doodads that got with 'em? Picked me up a couple stick pins I fancied.
It only took a few more minutes to get the measurements for the alterations, then Eleanore glanced at Barnabas. "These should be ready in three days, this is the cost." She handed him a paper, and Emeline was more than glad not to have to see how much this was costing!
Barnabas took out his wallet from his inside jacket pocket and paid Eleanore, still smiling. That she was worth whatever the price for the clothing went without saying. "Misses Pike? Shall we?" He asked , then "Thank you Eleanore, for this and sendin' me up ta Wigfalls."
Pleasantries exchanged, Barnabas and Emeline walked over to the telegraph office and stepped inside. Barnabas, grinned, you go on ahead first Em. Best you get yers off ahead of mine. Sides, I need ta figger out what I need ta say."
"There are a couple more," Emeline told him, shrugging. "I have been told that I need a dress for day, and for evening, and then something like this for more formal times." She gave him a stern look. "You know that you'll have to take me dancing now, right?"
"Good, good, reckon ya'll be wearin' all of 'em, just like the lady said.ain't be traipsin' around in what cloths we brung along." He said, happy that she found clothes she liked. "Dancin'? Till yer feet hurt! You can count on that! An' in some of the nicest places. Must be one close by here."
"And the lovely couple you'll make!" Eleanor smiled brightly, then glanced at Barnabas. "Give us a moment." She steered Emeline to the back room and a few minutes later, they came back out, and now Emeline was in a blue dress, a little more simple, but again with the flounces, laces and bows.
"Thank ya ma'am." Barnabas was well aware of what a 'lovely couple they made,' the day he met her. That fact was then and as he stood there, He and Em were as handsome a couple as ever walked the streets of Kalispell, let alone Portland, San Francisco or Virginia City.
"This is the last I have to measure, then you can be on your way," Eleanore declared through the pins she held in her teeth.
"You take yer time, we ain't in no hurry." He assured her. "Well, she might be to go dancin', after we experience some o' thet seafood. Send us a couple wires back home."
He grinned, "Yup, perfect. That the only one? Or there more of 'um I should have a look at? Pref'ferbly with you in 'em." He liked the dress, liked it on her, liked the way she looked. Almost a pity they'd be going back to Kalispell and leaving all of this kind of life behind, almost. But Kalispell was where they would really be the happiest. The ranch, Cafe, the folks in town. That was where they belonged.
"Well yep, picked a couple suits, shirts, boots, even a top hat. I'll not embarrass you with the way I look, 'member, I done this before." He pointed out. He sat down as Eleanor went about her tasks.
"Thanks Charles, we intend to do just that! And I'll be headed over to 'Cicarelli's' afore goin' back to 'Lulu's', that might be a wait, ain't sure. You have a good day, sir." With that Barnabas stepped out through the door, got his bearings in the bright sunlight, and made his way across the street to 'Cicarelli's.
Taking his time, he browsed the shop, picking out four stick pins that he liked, making sure to mention that Charles across the street at 'Wigfall's' had recommended the place to him. With that accomplished he walked back across the street to 'Lulu's', opened the door and stepped inside, the small bell over the door announcing his arrival.
Barnabas scanned the list nodding as he went over it, finding the charges to be very reasonable. "Good, yes, a fair price I would say. And expirin' ain't hardly in my plans any time soon, 'specially not on this trip. Reckon the wife wouldn't be none to happy with an expired husband to lug back to Montana."
He gave some thought to the delivery options as far as the things that need no alteration. "Tell ya whot Charles, jest deliver alla it when it's ready. No sense doin' this piecemeal. And I believe I might have a look overt this Cicarelli's an' see whot they got that catchs the eye." He grinned and stuck out his hand. "Pleasure doin' bidness with ya, Charles. A real pleasure."
"The Astor? A very fine establishment." Charles smiled and nodded approval, then added, "I'd say four days at the most. I'll be sure they are delivered, certainly. I can have the sundries sent today, if you'd like. Shirts, boots, whatnot..." Things that didn't need adjusting. "Oh, and will you need a nightshirt, too? I can get that sent as well."
"Yeah, sure that'll be just fine. And four days is fine by me, no tellin' how long the Wife's dresses'll take, but we're in no rush." Barnabas agreed, and time was not pressing. "Nightshirts?"He thought a second, his were not the best, "Best toss in a couple. Things ya just don't think about."
He paused a moment, then suggested, "There's a fine shop just across the street, Cicarelli's, where you can get jewelry accessories if you need them...cufflinks, hat and tie pins, anything like that."
There would be no replacing his watch or chain, they had been with him since the war. They had come from his Pa. Both were solid silver, and would be just fine, though he was careful with them. The fact was, he generally wore a watch and chain he picked up during his Rangering days, which was not a fine as those from his father, but suitable for most everyday wear.
Now, since he had selected some ties, perhaps he would investigate the store for a couple stick pins, and yes, he would need cuff-links for his shirts. Hat pins, not something he would need or use, but Em, now she may need one or two, maybe more depending, after all, she was a woman and she likely would have more than one hat. And, they still would need to get through San Francisco and it's garment district.
"I'll stop over there for sure." Pike said with a smile. This was getting to be fun! "Now, we'll need ta settle up, won't we?" He drew out his wallet from the inside pocket of his coat.
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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