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  1. "I inherited a piece of land but it's not worth a dime. Too dry, no water supply, not chance of farming it. Why my great uncle bought it, I don't know. I guess he was fooled." Aurelian frowned, "Oh that is bad luck. It happens though, I've heard of folks buying land sight unseen, never a smart thing to do. Least it didn't cost you anything. Also you might be able to dump it for dirt cheap and it's still a little profit." Clara was listening even as she had begun the meal preparations and mumbled, "There is always one idiot who will buy it. Your uncle proved that." Aurelian barely heard that but could only hope their guest hadn't caught it. His daughter did not varnish her opinions. "How much do you pay for a small farm around here?" (ooc: You would ask a question like that, lol, I have no idea.) Aurelian told the man what he paid for it then added, "But I have no idea what the going price for small farms is in general. Needless to say I stopped looking around after I bought this place." "Mind if I ask how you earn your dollars?" Again Clara muttered, "Sure asks a lot of questions." "Well, we grew corn and a whole mix of garden stuff - tomatoes, beans, squash, turnips, carrots, potatoes," Aurelian explained, "We sell or trade 'em in town. Also we do canning. Keep some for long term, sell some of that too. We are always on the lookout for jars it seems." He smiled.
  2. "I myself do not dwell on all the possibles and maybes in life. It is best to concentrate on the here and now and how you might positively affect the future," Clara sagely pointed out. Actually that last part she read somewhere but it did make sense. Sure enough Arabella was now freezing and chattering so much she SAID she was incapable of drying herself, it figured. She wrapped the towel about her emaciated frame. "You are not helpless, child. Especially since you seem to be old enough to have love affairs and like," Clare was not going to turn into a maid servant for this girl. “Clara! I forgot. I went pee-pee in the potty. Where should I empty it?” she looked round and met Clara’s brown eyes with her own blue, and then slowly turned her eyes to the water in the bath and then returned them to Clara’s, giving her a cheeky grin. "Not in the bathwater. I intend on using the bathwater so Wyatt can have a bath. We usually share the same bath water, many families do," Clara pointed out then added with a hint of disdain, "I will empty out your pot." The girl started drying herself off then but wanted to keep chatting - unfortunately. This time Arabella was curious about Clara's father and what was he like and how should she act around the man. "He does not like people who are too chatty," Clara answered, her assessment not really true but it might prove helpful. If she was being optimistic. “Clara” she whimpered, looking up at the slightly taller girl, her lips trembling and her blue eyes starting to well. “I’m sorry what I said before about hoping that feller’s wife had died, cause that’s like what happened to your Pappy. That might have made you sad, and you seem plenty sad already. My Aunt Rosie says I need to think more before I speak, but them words they just sort of bubble up inside me and sorta spurt out before I can stop ‘em, she says I, … I ‘wear my heart on my sleeve’. So, I’m sorry if I … made you sad.” Clara sighed, "You did not make me sad, again you were referring to something in the realm of possibility not facts. I have enough other things in my life to be concerned about. And for your information I am not sad right now, merely serious. It is how I am" "On the the other hand, your Aunt Rosie has a good point, you might wish to heed it more often," Clara decided to use the ammunition provided.
  3. "Hello, Mr. Ryker," Clara nodded, still studying him. "I offered your father my help with the horseshoes." "Oh, you did?" Clara glanced at her father hoping for some detail on that. "I bought two horseshoes and Mr. Ryker is a blacksmith so he offered to shoe the horse, free of charge. A kindly offer," Aurelian smiled. "Yes yes it is," Clara immediately was suspicious, she was not the most trusting soul. And sure enough... "So I made him a deal. He shoes the horse, we feed him a hot supper, only fair," Aurelian explained. "If you say so, Father," Clara sighed, more work for her and more food out of their stock. But it was so like her father and she did not fault him for it. "How long have you been living here?" Clara so wanted to answer the man that it was none of his business but her father was too quick. "Going on a year. We got a good deal on the place as the couple who had it before us had decided frontier life was not for them and were heading back East. They just wanted to get rid of it," Aurelian answered. "I felt bad for 'em. They were overwhelmed with the task at hand," he added. "I thought them lazy," Clara chimed in then moved past the man to begin working on tonight's meal with guest. Their guest asked if he could sit and naturally Aurelian consented, "Of course. Relax, we can have a nice talk." Aurelian pulled up another chair then and sat too.
  4. From inside the bunkhouse, Brendan probably heard a few gripes and cursewords from a few of the hands who might have awakened from the door slamming like that. But most slept right thu it, when you work as hard as a typical cowhand you get tired and it takes a lot to disturb one's sleep. The newcomer was wrong though in his assumption everyone had been asleep. As Connelly sat there pondering, the cowhands' outhouse door creaked open and out came one of the cowpokes. Billy was buttoning his trousers, the lone item of clothing he had on, he was also barefoot. But then it was August and certainly wasn't about to sleep in the long underwear he wore during colder times. He had gotten up a bit earlier than Brendan but had been more quiet about it. He had learned not to irritate some of the hands, a wise habit considering his youth compared to the other men. Billy was eighteen but didn't even look that, he still hadn't even needed to shave thus far. Which didn't bother him none, seemed like a mess of effort. And Billy had always been a bit on the lazy side. As he then padded back toward the bunkhouse, he couldn't help but notice the jasper sitting there on the front steps. The newest hand....he had heard the foreman mention the guy's name but in all honesty forgot what it was. Nonplussed though, for Billy was - especially for Evergreen cowhands - a good natured friendly sort, he lifted one hand in a 'hi' gesture. "Mornin', gonna be another scorcher I reckon, still beats to hell a Montana winter don't it?" he grinned. (ooc: Ignore the blood trickle, best pic I could find that fit. He's in fine health
  5. Clara was in her room, sewing... well patching up one of her brother's pants where there had a hole at the knee. Wyatt was so hard on clothing, a combination of his endless activity and annoying clumsiness. New trousers ,or any clothing for that matter, were an unwanted expense so it was up to her to extend the life of their wardrobe. She heard the front door open of course, her father and brother were expected home so that was her assumption. "Nice place, you have here, sir. Quaint and solid....that barn outside needs some fixing though. Heavy snowfall?" A man's voice and totally unfamiliar too? She stood up regretting instantly she had no firearm in the room. Then she heard her father's voice though and relaxed. "We think so, but yes, the people who had this farm before us had done a poor job on the roof and we got that confirmed when part of it fell in from too much snow. At least the whole roof didn't crash in on top of our stock. Besides the two horses, we got us a milk cow in the barn," Aurelian explained. Clara now emerged from her room to take a gander at this newcomer. No, she did not recognize the man at all. Not likely a local in her mind. And what was he here for? "Father," she greeted them. Aurelian grinned, "Daughter of mine." He turned to Jay, "Mr. Ryker, this is my daughter, Clara. And Clara, this here is Mr. Jay Ryker." "Good day, sir," Clara nodded without a hint of a smile but eyed him with a measure of suspicion.
  6. “No, no! He ain’t thirty years older than me, silly billy! That’d make him…” there was an embarrassingly long pause before she could work it out “… add the … why, that’d make him Fifty years old or summit!" Arabella chuckled. Clara did not share that amusement for one thing, the child was off on her arithmetic. "You are fourteen and if he would be thirty years older that would be forty-four not fifty," she helpfully corrected. This girl was as bad at numbers as Wyatt, sad really. “Now, I don’t know his name, but I reckon I can track that handsome devil down. I got clues: he was with lots of folks, and they all knowed him and did what he said, so I reckon he’s a … oh NO!!!” "Now what?" Clara braced herself for the next spate of dramatics. “Oh Clara, what if he’s married, or already got a gal?!” she put her hand to her lips in horror. “Oh, Clara, if he’s already wed, why, I…. I’ll just DIE!” she groaned and fell back dramatically swooning into the bath with a splash. "Tragic," Clara fairly dripped with sarcasm, "Not the you dying part but if he has a woman in his life. By that age they usually do. Trust me." Arabella then asked, “Kin I get out now? This here baths gettin’ cold.” "Most certainly, you have been in there long enough and spilled enough of it to wet my entire bedroom floor. Stand up then, let me get a towel," Clara informed her. The efficient housekeeper that she was, Clara had one sitting close on a shelf and held it out to the girl. "Here, I trust you can dry yourself off?" She almost added 'without drama' but that would setting expectations way too high!
  7. "Poor lad, it is very Christian of you and those others to help care for the boy though," Aurelian commented, "the benefits of a small town perhaps. In Philadelphia there were too many street urchins forced to make due on their own. There were a few orphanages but they were overwhelmed and the less said about some of their practices and methods the better." "I will ask Wyatt about Weedy, the boys might know each other. That is if Weedy goes to school? Wyatt does. Clara refuses though saying she is past whatever could be taught in a one room schoolhouse and to be honest, I think she is right. Besides, getting Clara to do something she doesn't want to - well, I would as soon engage in a tug of war with a full size bull," he chuckled.
  8. "Glad to make your acquaintance, Mr. Ryker," Aurelian smiled, "Yep, we can wait." It didn't take long and the man was back ready to go. Aurelian mounted first then helped the boy clamber up with a one arm lift. It would be Wyatt's task to hold the reins on their plow horse, now temporary pack horse, following behind. "Very well, I can guarantee you we won't be setting much of a pace what with the snow and ol' Jimmy here, the farm plowhorse," Aurelian declared and the trio of riders headed out of town. *** They had ridden silently, Aurelian figuring conversation would be much easier once they were all inside the farmhouse. The party made good time really and soon enough they were in sight of the Redmond farm. It wasn't all that impressive to look at first glance but Aurelian was proud enough of it, it was his. He had had it a less than a year and while it still needed work, they had survived that first growing season and harvest, learned a lot about the local climate - what would work and what not so much. He was both confident and determined they'd do better this next growing season. There was a farmhouse, a cabin really tall enough that it had an attic if not a full size second floor. There was a barn too and if Jay looked carefully he could probably tell part of the roof had collapsed. That would need fixing. There was a well not that far from the house, always a good thing. There was also a creek about a couple of hundred yards back which they passed, but it was frozen over. On one side of the farm there was a good start to a rail fence. Though covered up by snowfall, no doubt the farm had fields on all sides of it. Just off the barn was a small shed of some sort, it wasn't that old and lacked a first coat of paint even. On one side of the house there were two clothes lines leading to a pole stuck in the ground. Be it ever so humble, there was no place like home. "Well, Mr. Ryker, here we are. If you want, I can have Wyatt take care of the horses, he's quite capable of it, and we can go inside, maybe have a cup of coffee to take the chill off," Aurelian offered.
  9. Wyatt listened to the man's place of origin then piped out eager to show his grasp of history (Clara pounded that kind of thing into him enough afterall), "Oh sure, the British. We beat you guys in the Revolution then in the ....umm, oh yeah, War of 1812." "It was a bit more complicated than that, son," Aurelian tutted. The man accepted the offer though which delighted Wyatt, who grinned, "Bully for you!" Anything new at the farm was exciting in his opinion. The man just need to get his horse and ask about tools. "Yes, I have some farrier's tools but no forge or bellows, nothing to make horseshoes, as you well know that's a lot more complicated," Aurelian answered. "You know we really should do introductions before we go any further. I'm Aurelian Redmond and I have a farm a few miles outside of town. This here is my son, Wyatt. And I also have a daughter back home, she is the cook I mentioned." He held out his hand for a shake then too. @Jack
  10. "Ahh, blacksmith from Whitefish, huh? Sorry for you folks, that was quite a disaster," Aurelian softened immediately. "Does everyone in Whitefish speak like you?" Wyatt was suddenly curious. Aurelian frowned, "Wyatt, do not be rude. Sorry, he normally knows better." Wyatt also had blurted out an idea of his for the newcomer to shoe the horse and before Aurelian could assure the man the boy was again out of place, he answered. "If you wanted me to, I could." Jay nodded hoping to please the farmer. "No charge, of course." Wyatt grinned, "See, Pa!" Aurelian paused before speaking, "Well, if I do agree, I do believe your work should be compensated somehow afterall. How about if you do the job, we feed you a nice dinner. I have a good cook, I assure you." "Yeah, not me!" Wyatt added with amusement. @Jack
  11. The child was adamant that she, Clara, was definitely pretty. Now that made Clara feel good though she had to take into account the holder of that opinion. It would certainly carry more weight if Arabella were instead an eligible young male. "Kind of you to think so, Arabella, I appreciate it," Clara was sincere. Arabella then gave her theory as to why someone like Clara was not asked to dance on that last occasion. A part of it did have a certain logic to it. Come to think of it, her father once recalled that when he first met his wife, Clara's mother, he had been almost too shy to approach such a beautiful woman. Still, under no circumstances would Clara equate herself to her mother in that category. She had been stunning. The girl moved on to assessing her own self and how despite falling short in some categories she was apparently much more successful with the menfolk. Like Clara could swallow that one! Arabella followed with advice for the next dance. "I have not even decided if I will be going. Seems like a waste of time and I always have so many things to do," Clara shrugged. Like she wanted to stand there like a wall flower while Shade cavorted about the dance floor with that Jezebel school marm? Hardly! Well the girl wanted her to ask who the child was in love with so to hopefully bring an end to this painfully long discussion, Clara asked. “Oh Clara, he is just so very, very wonderful, but I don’t even know his name! It’s the gentleman that saved my life when that there house fell on my head. He pulled me out of that snow so romantic-like and then carried me to safety in his big strong arms. He is a little older than me, I'll allow, maybe even…” she winced a little “… thirty?” "Wait! You do not even know his name? And he is thirty or thirty years older than you? Goodness!" Clara was aghast. Either was too old. Of course had she paused for some introspection, Shade was a good deal older than her. But that had been different. She was an adult even if most folks did not see it.
  12. The man suddenly set forth his opinion about the horseshoe and it's relative worth. As if he was some sort of expert? Aurelian noticed the accent but that had nothing to do with the issue at hand. "Too thick?" he examined the object himself, it's not like he had not dealt with such things before, why he had been in cavalry during the war. But that said, it still didn't make him an authority on their making and specifications. Looked alright to him though. "For this horse?" "Yes," Aurelian was beginning to get a bit defensive about all this but it took a lot to rile him up. Now the man was asking about the blacksmith and his work including whether there might be a possibility of him being hired, it seemed he was looking for work. "Well, I think you had better take it up with the blacksmith himself on that matter? I can hardly make such decisions for him. However it might be good for you to know that he has a son in his early twenties I believe who is his assistant and will probably end up inheriting the business," Aurelian smiled, he was confident about what he said because the smith told him all this himself in casual conversation. "Pa, he could put on our shoes though, right?" Wyatt suddenly blurted out, meaning the stranger of course.
  13. Before the boy could bend down to pick it up, a passer by beat him to it. Wyatt looked up at the tall bearded man who then promptly handed him the shoe. "Did you make that?" Wyatt didn't know if the man was actually serious? Him make a horseshoe? Why his Pa couldn't even make one! "No sir," he shook his head. Aurelian had no idea who the man was - certainly no local he had seen before though there were quite a few ex-Whitefish folk now in Kalispell. Besides, he didn't know everyone in the town, him spending most of his time on his farm. "We bought that from the blacksmith shop. Reasonable price too," he answered the man with a smile.
  14. Arabella now thought that she was missing out on life if indeed she had not yet fallen in love. It seemed the younger girl was quite the veteran at it. The child was certainly full of whims in Clara's opinion and also fond of exaggeration. "So you say," was all Clara would concede to. Now though Arabelle was certain this time it was the real thing. Of course it was, Clara just stood there eying her and letting her ramble on. Wait ... she was back to asking her another question. “Are you sure you never been in love?” she returned to the subject again. "Yes. As in I have not. Not been in love," Clara assured her. Whatever that had been with Shade, no, it was definitely not 'in love'. "Well, has any young gentleman ever been in love with you? You’re so sweet lookin’, I bet heaps of boys has been head over heels in love with you, Clara. Why, Melissa Cartlidge had scores o’ admirers and she weren’t half as pretty as you.” Clara paused then replied barely audibly, "So you think I am pretty. I look in the mirror and find I am quite plain." "Last festival we had a dance and only one person asked me to dance and that was an older man. No one my age even gave me a second look and I had a dress on I had sewed myself," she recalled, but no, she was not bitter. “Well, ain’t ya gonna ask me all about the feller I’m in love with?” Arabella practically demanded. Clara's first thought was to simply say 'no' but that would be unkind especially since the girl had complimented her just seconds earlier. "Very well, who are in in love with then?" she sighed.
  15. They certainly agreed that the town would no doubt approve of a library when that day finally came. It would be another sign of progress, successful towns needed such things. Emeline suddenly wondered about starting up a book exchange, an interesting concept. Then put forth none other than Clara to manage it. He had to chuckle. "Well, knowing Clara she will say yes because that's the way she is. Always being helpful but I'm not sure. Depends on how much work and time it will take? Afterall, she works hard everyday at home and now has this job here in town. I do not know how much I would be comfortable seeing on her plate. No offense though, ma'am," he decided to be honest with her about his thoughts on the matter. "As for Wyatt, I tend to keep him at home except for schooling of course. Clara has to take my horse into town to get here to work. But so far I have not allowed Wyatt to ride it alone. Something he is not happy about as you might imagine. But thank you for the kind offer," he smiled. "Weedy comes by almost every day, he really likes apple pie!" "How could he not," Aurelian chuckled, "I'm sorry but I don't know who this Weedy fellow is?"

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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