"So Mister Guyer, Town Marshal and businessman. What now?" She asked looking into his eyes. "And what is it you will do 'bout your careers? You know you don't have to make a choice, well unless you want to. I'm saying I can live with you being Marshal, It's not like the place is overrun with badmen. And your business? That wouldn't be a problem at all either."
"You're pretty accommodating, Miss Fletcher, I should say Missus Fletcher. That will keep me in town quite a lot, you realize that, right?" He asked in response. "I'd be little to no help with the ranch running both offices, even with Pike backing me up. But if this is really something you want to do?"
"Yes, yes it is." Was her answer, "I know that you will be in town a lot, like everyday, but you'll be home every night, and with a couple of hands to help out around here, and Pa when he drifts in, we'll get by until things change."
"Come fall I could always lose the election, or maybe by then I either don't run, or drop out. Pike and I have talked about that. He said he wouldn't stay on if I were to quit. That would be a real blow to the community, or, so it seems. A change might be good." He suggested. "Now the minerals business, that's some dfferent. The difference is, regular hours, and Ada can handle the place if I'm not there."
She studied him a long moment, even stepped back to take in the man. "You are a good man Speed Guyer. You value the town, I hear that in your voice. You're not worried that you could lose an election, and you seem to have the mineral business under control. I don't know what more I could ask. You seem to know what your priorities are."
"And, now we add you to those priorities." She put her finger to his lips.
Speed looked at her and a smile crept over his face, his eyes perhaps twinkling a bit. She had him and he knew it. There was no doubt about what was to come. There was probably no way to avoid it, well, not unless he mounted up and rode out of the country. And that certainly was not going to happen.
"The way I see it Miss Fletcher, excuse me, Missus Fletcher, I have yet to properly propose to you, and for that I am sorry. In my own defense, I was unaware that I would be overcome by you, and that talks of plans, and of marriage seemed to have gotten out of hand, perhaps moving faster than either of us intended." He explained contritely. Then the smile replaced the serious look and he went on. "I have no ring to give you today, but I will have come tomorrow." He dropped to one knee. "Alice Fletcher, I proclaim my love for you here and now, and ask you, will you consent to become my wife?"
Alice smiled as she looked into his eyes, "A ring? When you bring it, I will wear it, and yes Mister Guyer, I would be honored to become your wife. And, what's more, don't think for a moment tat you need to give up Marshaling on my account. You seem to forget what my father has made a living at these past years. I have no plans to try and change anything about you. I want you just as you are."
"Well," He started to say, just as he drew him up to his feet, "The job, either one is just that. I like being the Marshal, serving the town, and, I like my business, serving the company I am part of. What I will love is building the place to what we want it to be, and a family if that's what you want. But..." She kissed him then.
"That's it." She said with a note of pride in her voice. "Not much right now, but we've plans for it Pa and I." With that said, she looked at him. Watching his response to what she said, and what lay just below "A man could do well on a place like that with a good woman at his side to make it what it could be."
"You're just not real subtle are you Alice Fletcher?" He said suddenly. "Yes, that place has all the potential anyone could want, but you just said I should be out seeking my fortune, in the next breath you're inviting me to make this my home and develop it, like Pike's doing with Em on his spread. So which is it Miss Fletcher? What is it you're after."
"Subtle? I suppose not, but Mister Guyer, neither of us is getting any younger, and there's no sense in the two of us thinking of one another when we are right here. It is what we make of it from this point on, Speed. Rancher, businessman, lawman, no matter. You and I is what matters." Came her response. "You and I. Then you don't have to think of me, you'll have me, right here, next to you as I am now."
"That surely sounds like a proposal Alice. And you're right, one hundred percent right on all counts. We're here, in Kalispell, together. We have found one another after a long spell, whether we were actively seeking one another is beside the point, and I would think not very likely, but, here we are. I'd say our feelings are known to one another and there are steps that surely need to be taken." Speed agreed with an explanation .
"Then we need to ride down to the place so you can have a proper look." She suggested.
"It's a rare thing that I am overcome by crazy notions. However, I could say that you out distance me in that department." She spoke through a genuine smile. The stories I've heard detailing your exploits for the law."
"When it comes to staying alive, and enforcing the law of the land, in this case the town of Kalispell, sometimes it is difficult to separate the risk from the reward." Speed admitted, knowing some situations were far more deadly than others in his line of work.
"Well then, without the law, what would we have? Surely not this fine town, nor would people be free to walk the streets safely." She rebutted. "It is a job that must be done, and done by those who would step into harms way for the good of the community. Somehow Henry, I just can't see you without the badge."
"I have a successful mining enterprise, funded by my partnership in the east, something I'm beginning to see the need to take a stronger hand in the day to day operation. Which, the job as Town Marshal affords me the freedom to do."
"Father has spoken of your business, he speaks highly of it. But, let me ask you this, would it, in and of itself, be satisfying enough if say you lost reelection?" She quizzed.
"It's been a rel pleasure, Addy. See you again, and soon!" She walked out with the teamster, watched her climb aboard the wagon, take up the reins and with a snap, she began to turn around for the trip back. She waved, then went back inside the cabin.
"Oh without a doubt, the railroad will do you you a world of good. All of us for that matter. And yes, people will be ordering more not just from back east, but anywhere the tack runs past, and some places it don't." Alice said. "Progress I guess is what they call it. Trains aren't new, not by a long shot, but trains running through Montana, that is new and Kalispell for one, will benefit from it."
"Now about this Speed Guyer, I'll be riding into town maybe tomorrow or the the day after and see just what he has to say for himself. Providing, of course nothing intervenes with that plan, and if so, you can bet your bottom dollar, he and I are about to have a conversation about he and I. No sense playing pretend about it." At that she smiled.
Alice smiled, " Is that what you think? That I wanted to hear that you remembered me?" She chided him. "Well we are here across from one another, a very intense conversation, wouldn't you say?" The she smiled again, the last part is what I wanted to hear, that you think of me often, because I think of you often as well. Fortuitous that we should both end up in Kalispell Montana."
"Alice Fletcher, you are certainly bold about your feelings and your thoughts. And what if I said that I had a girl? What would you say to that?"
"That you're a liar. That I know all about you and your stay here in Kalispell. I know that you have no girl, that you have no prospects of having a girl, well that none have outwardly expressed any interest in you, so in all modesty, Henry Speed Guyer, I'm you're best opportunity, seeings you think of me often. You no longer need to think, I'm here right, in front of you."
Speed exhaled briefly, "There's no subtlety in you at all is there? I mean, you just put it out there, simple as that."
"If you've a mind, when ya come ta town, I can find room fer ya for th' night. House ain't much, but its better than th' room at th' back'a th' barn I was usin'." Weedy had changed her needs, and she was now glad for the comfort of a real house.
"Well ow, that's mighty kind of you Addy. I believe I'll take you up on that. By gum, perhaps it is time I rode in to town and paid Marshal Guyer an impromptu visit. " She said suddenly.
To ride in, and to see him, perhaps even spend the night. That would solve several questions that she had about Mister Speed Guyer and their chances. And why she would think he might have feelings for her, played no part in her decision making.
Alice thought about that for a long moment. Perhaps that was how the man was, but she wasn't having any of that. "Well then, I guess it would be up to me to change that for him. I mean, there's simply no reason for a grown man to be running around loose now, is there?"
"But I do see what you mean about being set in one's ways, because all of us tend to be that way at one time or another, and left unattended, well, this could be a far larger task than I was prepared for, and, I need to know that I too have my own ways about all manner of things, which just might have to change as well." It was clear that it may be at the very least, a complicated transformation ahead.
Alice chuckled a bit, "I'm not sure i want to go in for the kill. I mean a dead man is of no use. But yes, I see what you mean, and I just may do that. I mean, going into town is innocent enough, what might happen after my arrival Well, I have no control over who I might run into, whether by accident, or on purpose."
It was a good plan of action. Simply ride into town, maybe even pick up a few thing while she was there, and then, quite innocently, put herself in Speed Guyers path. Whatever would develop after that moment would tell he everything she needed to know.
Yes. Speed had stirred something in her, something Arthur never could. But in the beginning Arthur had been stable, a good provider, and then it began to unravel. The drinking, gambling, and the loses that piled up. Somehow, the recollection of Speed had stayed with her over the years, and now, he was just a few miles away in Kalispell.
"It's a good plan, Addy, a really good plan. And in the end, I'll know all I need to know about him, and what the chances are." She said confidently.
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.
Connect With Us On
If you would like to join the Sagas' Discord server or are already a member, click the image to open the Discord web application.