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  1. Mature Content: No With: Clara Redmond, Cody and Nettie Thornton Location: Lost Lake, water's edge (starts at the ranch house) When: Early September 1875 (same day as The New Guys thread) Time of Day: Afternoon After the Wentworth brothers took their leave, Shade made his way back to the terrace where Clara was with the twins. He walked over and leaned against the terrace railing, looking out over his home's spectacular landscape. It was a legacy worth protecting for the sake of his niece and nephew. Chance had made sure that legacy also included him. Movement down near the lake's edge caught his attention, and he watched as a huge beaver took to the water. Turning, he said to Clara, "Feel like a hike down to the lake's edge? It might be good for us all to stretch our legs a bit." @Wayfarer
  2. Shade made his way across the street and toward the White Rose Inn and Cafe. He was getting around better although still sporting a slight limp. Being confined to the ranch and ranch house had made him more than slightly stir crazy. Rather than suffer the further effects of cabin fever, Shade had volunteered to drive into town for the supplies Mary Miller needed at the lodge. He didn't even mind that it included a shopping list for herself and Sage. Entering the cafe, Shade looked around at the patrons. He nodded to a few people he knew, then spotted someone he had not seen in a while. The man had been a big help in the dust-up on Founder's Day. Walking over to the table, Shade nodded politely at the man, "Pronto...haven't seen you around in a bit. Then again, I haven't been in town lately either. Mind if I join you?" @Flip
  3. Hannah listened intently to what Matt was saying about his brothers. She liked his sense of family that he seemed to genuinely want to see and spend time with brothers instead of treating it as an onerous duty. She did not have siblings and had often wished she had had a sister to help her negotiate the pitfalls of being a woman. "I understand," Hannah said in response to Matt's telling her about his brothers. "Perhaps some other time..." She was getting used to his compliments but could not decide if Matt was serious or it was part of his charm. Hannah knew she was not ugly, yet when comparing herself to some of the women she saw around town or in the odd lady's magazine, she could see she was not a ravishing beauty either. Perhaps it was the dress she was wearing. Most folks around town were used to seeing her in men's garb as her father called it. Not that he objected to it when she was working. However, Hannah was a bit nonplussed when Matt reached for her hand and kissed it. That certainly sent sensations through her that she was not used to feeling. She managed a charming smile, "Why, Matt! You are going to make some of the town's ladies jealous," Hannah tapped his hand with her free one. "Thank you for the lovely compliments and for asking me to lunch. I can't say when I have enjoyed a meal or the company more." Hannah kept her voice slightly playful while keeping her words sincere. She put the feelings that she stirred in her down to a schoolgirl's crush brought about by receiving unexpected attention from such a handsome and debonair man. @JulieS
  4. While everyone was stirring about the wagons, Harriet rode over to the wagon with the one person she knew outside her own party. Lost Lake's two trail hands and Weems had settled nearby as well. They were loading spare weapons and preparing for a fight. Harriet wanted to talk to Quentin and take stock of where they stood and what was coming. She pulled her Winchester from its scabbard and dropped to the ground, and looped Spirit's reins through a loop on the wagon. Harriet kept one eye on Quentin as she began reloading her rifle. She was extremely grateful that he had not been harmed. At the same time, she tried to quash some of the other underlying feelings that had surfaced when he had put himself in harm's way for them. Practicality resurfaced. They needed to find a way to retrieve the scattered cattle and finish the short drive to the fort. They needed to fulfill the contract even though Harriet felt sure that Judge Wendell would take the Indian attack into account when he reviewed the ranch's records. It was also a matter of honor. Harriet suspected that Shade half expected them to fail. To her surprise, she knew the woman that Quentin had spoken to. Harriet's smoky gray eyes widened, "Addy!" Despite their circumstances, she smiled, "You are the last person I expected to run into out here." @Bongo @Longshot
  5. Hey! I want to thank everyone for their participation in this thread, ongoing discussions in Discord, and all of the wonderful historical assistance. I really do listen and take as much into consideration as I can while still keeping the RPG flowing. It is a balancing act to keep the feel of history and still blend the action and stories in the style of the old TV and movie westerns. With everyone's help, I think we are doing a superb job. With all of that in mind - here is my understanding of where we are going...some of it with creative license. Below is Longshot's plot idea regarding why so many local Indians came together and are willing to take on Fort Poison (real name: Fort Kilpatrick). Per @Wayfarer, the Plains tribes did not normally have such a cohesive response to anything. We might have to add another backstory layer to give them added incentive to want to free the Chief's son from captivity. Other Plot Points Major Brittles is on his way north to the Kalispell region to oversee the building of the new fort (Fort Lincoln) and take command of it. Colonel Crazy As Yet Unnamed may or may not be aware that Fort Kilpatrick (Fort Poison) is being decommissioned and he is being recalled / reassigned. Fort Kilpatrick was originally built as a trading "fort". It has a low fence between some of the buildings to help contain livestock and the like. It is not a massive stockaded fort. Harriet and Quentin with 3 NPCs (not named except for wagon driver, Weems) were driving a herd of 25 cattle to the fort to fulfill a contract with Lost Lake Ranch when they were attacked by a band of Indians. They managed to escape during the melee and have made it to the meadow where Brittles, his men, and Addy are. Indians are in pursuit. ?? I am assuming we all need to get to Fort Poison, find out Colonel Crazy's plots and all of that. Fort Lincoln The original plan was that Brittles would scout out and secure land for the location of Fort Lincoln. While doing that, he and his men would set up camp in the Kalispell "Fairgrounds" (a large meadow west of town bordered by the fictional Chogun River. (I know! I need to work on maps). Again, the original plan was to locate the fort between Kalispell and Whitefish. However, after a bit of discussion, we decided that the Steelgraves would oppose that plan since having a large fort near their holdings might infringe on their nefarious dealings. Hence, I made a command decision to locate the fort where originally had it (before I decided to not deal with having a "Fort Kalispell"). Fort Lincoln will be a few miles south of Kalispell on a plateau surrounding by the mythical Chogun River and just to the north of Flathead Lake. Backstory The new Fort Lincoln will be built on the old site of a former trading fort called Fort Kalispell. Not lots of land prep involved, etc. This also means the new fort's residents will be close enough to Kalispell to be involved in lots of threads and storylines. I am sure I've forgotten things but this is why we have discussion threads in the forums as well as on Discord. Please let me know if I missed something. PS: We will do up a wiki page for Fort Lincoln with its current played characters and NPCs. @Players @Sr. Moderator @Members
  6. Continued from Cattle Drive [Part 2]... It felt as if she had been in the saddle and riding hard for hours when, in fact, it was only minutes...very long minutes. For whatever reason, the band of Indians had not left off their pursuit. That surprised Harriet. She had thought that once they had clear access to the cattle and horses, they would break off. Harriet was not an expert, but she knew that most tribes wanted no part of attacking an occupied fort. Poison's former trading fort was nothing grand, but it was well-armed. On top of that, it was fairly close to the settlement. It simply was not typical behavior for Indians. Spirit stumbled hard as he leaped into the middle of a narrow, fast-flowing stream, jarring Harriet's teeth and making her lurch in the saddle. She managed to stay on the horse and pushed him to leap up the far bank. Their pursuers were gaining ground on them and Harriet was exhausted. She clung grimly to the saddle horn and the reins, spurring the big paint forward. Driving the horse hard, she and her companions burst from a narrow copse of trees into a vast meadow. This time, she came close to falling as Spirit threw up his head and neighed loudly. Far across the expanse of thick grass was a number of men in uniform... Harriet tossed a quick look at Quentin and leaned low over her gelding's neck. Fortune had finally favored them.... Quentin blinked as he heard Harriet's horse, his eyes widening as he saw the soldiers across the meadow. The flood of relief was almost as quickly overcome by a wave of fear. It would be just their luck to be shot down in the exchange of fire between the soldiers and the Indians pursuing them. Quentin spared a quick glimpse behind them and then he spurred to the front of the small group, pointing the Winchester off to the left as he guided Paladin in a curving path to get out from in front of the carbine barrels that were coming up and the snapping rounds coming from behind them. "This way! Left! Left!" @Stormwolfe @Wayfarer @Glenn @Bongo
  7. Harriet felt her heart drop like a stone when Quentin whirled his horse around to face the hostiles. She only had a second to think on it though. She and Barnes, the younger of the two hands riding with them, had bought enough time for Weems to get sorted. He had given up trying to snag one of the second string. Instead, he'd unhooked the team from the wagon and vaulted onto the back of the wheeler. With the wagon driver safely mounted, Harriet and the two hands made a last charge, firing a few shots in the direction of the milling cattle. With loud and frantic bellows, the animals finally scattered, many of them running toward the group of Indians. It would buy them a little more time... Wheeling the big paint in next to Quentin as he caught up to them, Harriet turned long enough to fire off two more shots. She had been stingy with the ammunition in her Winchester. She had come a long way with her marksmanship since Quentin's first lessons, but she was a long way from being able to reload while on the back of a running horse. She had seen Shade do it, holding the reins in his teeth and managing his horse with his legs. There was no way they were going to make it all the way to the fort. Harriet knew from the previous night's conversation that there was a long expanse of brush on this side of the river, some low-lying hills, and a couple of large meadows between them and their approach to Fort Poison. She gritted her teeth and focused on managing her horse although she spared more than one thought for their scattered herd. When the crisis was over, perhaps they could round up most of the herd and make-up the shortfall later. Harriet refused to consider that the ranch would default on this contract. A bullet whizzing far too close to her head brought her rambling thoughts back to the immediate issue at hand... Continued in The Long March...
  8. The entire experience had been surprisingly pleasant. The only man she had interacted with on a personal level was Ezra Hale's eldest son, Nick. She had enjoyed his company but not his wandering eye. It seemed that Nick thought of her more as a pal than a woman to be courted. The one and only time she had been in love had been in her teens...with Shade Thornton. He had left her waiting by the river on the night they were supposed to elope. Although she was starting to feel the womanly urge to have a home and family, Hannah was somewhat jaded on her prospects. The chance encounter with Matt Wentworth had proved fortuitous. He was a handsome and charming companion. Hannah also felt they might become friends. She had no illusions about anything else ever happening between them. Hannah smiled and indicated her dress, "I am thinking about changing, gathering my rod and reel and doing a little fishing. It would be nice to have fresh fried trout for dinner tonight. I want to make the most of my day off." She almost asked him about his plans, but stopped herself. He was a wealthy business owner. No doubt, he needed to return to work as soon as they were finished with lunch. @JulieS
  9. Although Harriet had no experience with hostiles, she easily recognized the sounds as the Indians broke from cover. She had barely gotten word to Weems and the other two men when it happened. Harriet reined Spirit in so hard that he slid to a halt on his haunches, rearing slightly and tossing his head. She turned in the saddle and a wave of relief swept over her as she saw Quentin riding hard in their direction. With some luck, the Indians were after the cattle although it was equally likely that they wanted the horses and weapons too. Whirling Spirit around again, Harriet sank spur and the big paint leaped forward toward the herd. The shouts, yelps, gunshots and screams were already making the cattle nervous. It took little effort to spook them entirely. Even a mob of only twenty-five cows could do a great deal of damage. Harriet rode to the outside of the herd, planning on turning them back toward the band of hostiles as a delaying tactic. The two hands intuited her plan and also circled to the outside. They needed the delay to allow Weems to mount one of the second string of horses they had brought with them. The wagon would be too slow even with a strong pair of horses pulling it. Hopefully, they could recover the wagon, the team, and most of the herd later. Right now, their lives were more important and the best way to stay alive was to get to the fort! @Longshot
  10. "I have to agree. This is one of the most enjoyable meals I've shared with anyone," Hannah agreed and returned the compliment. "I am off again on Sunday since I switch over to night duty on Monday. It's a tradition around here for people to go a-visitin' after church or Mass. Maybe we could make it to a couple of the ranches or some of the local business owners then?" @JulieS
  11. "I look forward to working with you when I am back in the saddle," Shade said, giving Mike's hand a firm, warm shake. "Charlie, we'll talk more about what you'll be doing around here then and how to carve out time for you to work with your brothers on the range." The rancher was pleased to have hired the brothers. He did not sense anything wrong about them and after years on the drift, Shade had a good nose for when people were just off. Now he needed to find Clara and the twins. Maybe they could go outside for a little while, take the easy trail down to the lake. He needed the exercise.
  12. Hannah grinned at Matt's question, "I love custard pies. I can't make one to save my life though." She dipped her head to inhale the intoxicating fragrance of the coffee. Hannah could feel her eyes wanting to glaze over in appreciation. Once she had completely indulged herself with a small sip of the heavenly brew, she turned her attention back to Matt. "With a meal shared and a tentative job offer in the wings, I feel we must be friends, Mr. Wentworth," Hannah tapped the table with a long finger. Her hands were scrupulously clean as were her slightly long, well-kept nails. She did not forsake all femininity for her job. "Perhaps, I can return the favor in some way? Give you a tour of the surrounding area, introduce you to folks that will bring good business to the hotel?" @JulieS
  13. Shade carefully got to his feet, managing not to put too much weight on the injured leg. Picking up the cane, he grimaced at the brothers, "I hope to be back in the saddle soon. Right now, we are working with a skeleton crew." As he slowly walked the Wentworths out, he continued, "Report here when your come in for work day after tomorrow...as early as you can. I'll have Sage Miller, our night foreman, hold over so he can get you settled and get you whatever gear you need. I'll also get your first month's pay." He paused at the door, "About getting paid upfront, it means if you leave the job or are let go, that's it. So far, paying in advance has never let us down. In fact, we've found our trust rewarded more than otherwise. The gear is yours to keep, as is a mount if one is needed." @JulieS
  14. Location: Not too far from Fort Kilpatrick When: Early September 1875 Time of Day: Late morning, 4th day on the trail. Harriet reigned Spirit to a stop. She spent a moment looking around and smiled. She would never be a top-hand but after three days on the trail and with the help of the big medicine hat paint she was riding, Harriet felt that she was acquitting herself reasonably well. She was even adjusting to the long hours in the saddle. Well, she might be doing pretty good now, but the morning after their first full day on the trail, Harriet had barely been able to move. At the end of that second day, she had crept off alone to the nearby creek to wash up, sat there and had a good cry due to the amount of pain she was in. Today was the fourth day on the trail and she had been told that Fort Poison was a short distance beyond the nearest rise. Although the fort backed up on the lake, it was decided to go ahead and stop for their midday meal and water the stock at a wide creek. Spirit lowered his head to the water, lipping at it gently before snorting a bit. The ripples seemed to interest the horse which amused Harriet. She continued to relax and let him take a long drink. After a bit, she tugged his head up and deftly backed him up the shallow bank to wait for the signal to move the herd across. Spotting Quentin's tall figure mounted on his golden dun, Paladin, Harriet had to smile. Their squabbling and arguing had reached new heights during the journey. That was until the second night when Weems, the wagon driver, commented on the fact that they sounded like an old married couple. From that point forward, Harriet had restricted herself to the odd sarcastic comment aimed at Quentin. Spirit distracted her by tugging gently on the bit. The big gelding was anxious to get the herd moving again. @Longshot
  15. Shade leaned back and stared at the three men for a few moments. He liked the feel of them. Mike was forthright and respectful and his brothers indicated their own respect by accepting his leadership. The rancher felt he was making the right choice by hiring them. He expected that the older one would keep the other two in line since his reputation as a top-hand could take a hit if the younger brothers got up to too many hijinks. What concerned him now was how much to tell them? They were new to the region. In the end, Shade decided to be as truthful with them as they had with him. He waved a hand to signal the twins to come over, "Nettie, Cody - say hello to our new foreman, Mike Wentworth and his brothers, Sam and Charlie. Sam will be working for Mike on the range and Charlie will be helping out with the livestock and chores up here for a bit. My niece and nephew own the other half of the ranch." The twins shyly greeted the newcomers, then Nettie looked at her uncle, "Mrs. Mary made apple cake. Can we have some?" "If Mary says it's okay but eat it in the kitchen please," Shade told them although he signaled that Clara could remain if she wanted to. As the twins ran into the house calling for the housekeeper, he turned his attention back to the brothers, "I didn't want them to hear this. Cody still has night terrors." "Back in June, while on their way back from Missoula, my brother, Chance, and his wife, Regina were ambushed by raiders. They and their two oldest children were killed and burned beyond recognition. Cody survived by hiding in a nearby rock outcropping. The CO at Fort Kilpatrick insisted that the attackers were Indians. I have my doubts. My brother's will left me half the ranch, the other half to his and Regina's children, and some of their business investments to her brother, Quentin Cantrell. He and I were given custody of any of their minor children should something happen to them." Shade paused and sighed. He had not been able to help the note of pain in his voice as he relived the story of what had happened to Chance, Regina, and the children. "Quentin and I arrived in early July to take over here only to learn that someone had lodged a custody suit for the twins and disputed the will. Carson Tyndall, the man the lodged the dispute, was, once upon a time, my father's attorney. Chance fired him when he learned that Tyndall also worked for the Steelgrave family. I'm not sure if he is still there or not. The case was heard in court. Judge Oliver Wendell upheld the dissolution of the trust that mandated the ranch and all assets devolve to the eldest Thornton son only. However, he also stipulated that we needed for the ranch to show a six-percent increase quarterly to make sure the best interests of the heirs was being met. The ranch is in the black but with new folks moving to the area all the time, our profits might take a hit." "We want to guarantee Cody and Nettie's future. More important than that, though, is that they are safe and happy in their family home." There was another pause and Shade shook his head, "Not used to talkin' this much at one sitting..." "The biggest threat to the ranch, to the twins and their inheritance are the Steelgraves. There's a longstanding rivalry between them and the Thorntons that's spilled over into outright feuds in the past. You might as well know, I had to kill Calvin Steelgrave to protect Regina's honor some thirteen or fourteen years ago. Missoula's sheriff considered it a self-defense shooting but because of the bad blood, I left the area." Shade chose not to tell them that his father had pretty much disowned him and sent him away. "Lost Lake Ranch shares a portion of its northeastern border with Evergreen Ranch, the Steelgrave's property although old man Elias Steelgrave considers his place to be part of Whitefish and not Kalispell. You'll need to watch out if your work takes you to that area. Don't go alone. Can't promise there won't be trouble in town either. Steelgrave likes to send his hands into Kalispell just to stir things up." Shade decided not to bring up his own sometimes questionable past for now. That would come out in time. @JulieS

About Sagas

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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Founders: Stormwolfe & Longshot

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