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  1. Meanwhile, Reeve had found Caroline and Bridget. If he had been expecting to find the two ladies sitting in armchairs sedately sipping tea and eating cucumber sandwiches or deep in prayerful mourning, he was in for a surprise; they were both on the floor playing dollies. Bridget could be very persuasive and insistent when she wanted to do something and, despite not having had dollies herself as a kid, and perhaps not knowing quite what to do with them, Caroline had been accommodating. Reeve looked from one to the other: all he knew about this Bridget person was that she was a simple-minded cripple. Maybe it was the old trope about dumb blondes which swayed his judgement, but he looked at straight at Caroline and said "Miss Monahan, I presume?" @Wayfarer
  2. She turned to Arabella and nodded. Whatever she had to say might have relevance to Bridget, so she decided to listen to it, "All right, Arabella does it concern last night's incident?" Arabella screwed up her face and let out a rather ungainly "Uh?!" She shook her head and got all secretive again. "No, it's about him!" she hissed, and shuffled closer to Mrs Wentworth so that she was within conspiring-distance. They were quite clearly alone now, but as the young Virginian whispered, her eyes kept darting about, lest her words be overheard. "Listen, see, you better watch out fer that Mr. Reeve. Me and Jemima Wigfall worked out that he's... well, let's put it this way, we all thought that he was all sweet and spoony over Anæsthesia Orr or at least sweet and spoony over her money, but she went over there the other day to 'range some spiritualist stuff with Mrs Orr and guess what? Well, I'll tell you what, she caught him and MISSUS Orr in what you might call a compromising combination, that's what the French call In Frangranty Derelicto!" There was more. "... and then the other day I bumped into him at the store, like the general store, and there was that there pretty new girl there what's called Anna Albrick, but he was just plain old ignorin' her and pitching woo at ol' Mrs Thingumyjig in there, the owner's wife and she's sixty if she's a day, and looks it too. You see what I'm gettin' at, Mrs Dubble-yuh? This feller likes his chicken well done! I mean, he goes fer the more experienced woman, even if she's married!!" She had finished at last, and stood back a little. "I don't want you to think I'm just a gossip monger, Mrs Wentworth, just, well, us girls has gotta look out fer each other is all. You'd better watch yerself with that feller, pretty looking lady in her forties like yerself. I reckon he's a homewrecker!" @JulieS
  3. Charlie sighed. "Well what you sighin' like that for?!!" Arabella queried a little crossly. "My friend's been shot dead or stabbed or something, least you can do is tell me what happened!" she nagged "You ain't tellin' me all that there blood came off of a shavin' cut?!" "I'm sorry, but I can't say much as there will probably be a Coroner's Inquest." He paused as he readjusted his grip on the stretcher. Since he was carrying the end where the top half of the body and most of the weight was, it was heavier than it looked. Maybe ol' Lorenzo was carrying a few more pounds than what could be seen. Arabella frowned at the lack of information; she supposed it didn't matter too much in the long run. Lorenzo was dead, no coming back from that. And she had to admit one thing, the responsibility of being a Marshall's Deputy had certainly wrought a change in Charlie's disposition for the better: he was more decisive and commanding now than he had been wont to be, certainly enough so that she did not press him any further for details of the tragedy. "However, if you find out anything from Bridget about the incident, it would be wise to go the Marshall and let him know." "Well, it's nice to know that she's still alive!" Arabella grumped. Then, to herself as much to Charlie, she hummed "I'd better tell Brendan about this, and Caroline..." @JulieS
  4. Javia


    SOMETIME LATER The group of cavalry soldiers and the two rescued women were now heading back to the camp. The two seriously wounded men were on travois. It was dark now and it was all anyone could do to stop their horses tripping in the dogholes as the small band traversed the seemingly limitless prairie. Then there was a holler from ahead. @MD
  5. Jess was predicably surprised that his younger cousin was married and that they were expecting a kid already. "A baby?" He couldn't help but smile in joy for his cousin, slapping his hand on his shoulder. "Can't believe you're gonna be a Pa." Jacob gave a bashful smile and refrained from mentioning that the conception of the baby came a little before, and was one of the catalysts to, the marriage. Not that mattered: he was married to the woman he loved, no matter what the complications. Baby Arabella Blank was just an added bonus. Jacob did feel a slight urge to assure Jess that they would name the baby after the bereaved son's recently deceased mother, if it was a girl, but he was sensible enough never to promise anything Clara might not approve of. "You'll make a good one." He nudged him some the smile leaving his face. "I hope so." nodded Jake, and he meant that. Of course, 'making a good father' in those days meant something a little different than centuries later: putting food on the table, clothes on backs and setting a good moral example and making sure that children grew up well mannered, useful to society and good Christians was about the sum of it. Jess told Jacob how he felt about his woeful family situation. "I just wish I could change everything. Wish I coulda gotten back in time and wish I could change Pa and Zenobia..." and then what hurt him possibly most of all besides his mothers death.... "and Raymond would hardly even speak to me. I just know all this would hurt Ma something terrible." Jacob shrugged. "Zenobia's just Zenobia, I guess." Well, that was the extent of his philosophical evaluation of his stormy petrel of a cousin. "Ray'll come round, he's just piggy in the middle right now." he offered. Of his Uncle Abraham he offered no mitigating remarks. He lifted his head and looked at his cousin. "I'm not sittin' with 'em tomorrow at the funeral. I'm gettin' there early and sittin' in the back." He wanted someone to know and he knew he'd tell his Aunt Nellie later when he got to her house. Jacob nodded glumly. He wasn't exactly looking forward to the funeral anyway, of course, the thought that a fight might break out made it even more of a potential ordeal: the diabolical chemical combination of Abraham, Jess, Zenobia, and granny Nellie was an almost terrifying prospect when he thought that his pregnant wife and his sickly sister Leonora would both be present. Then the alluring Miss Mundee started to compliment him on the birth of Baby Arabella, damn!, Baby Blank. Some crossed wires. "Ralph, I'll take my usual, thanks. And hey, don't charge young Mr. Lutz this one. It's on the house in honor of his newborn babe. Hope she's doin' well," Caroline offered. "Sure thing," Ralph of course poured a whisky from Caroline's special bottle under the shelf, colored water, "Congrats, kid." "Oh! No! Er... the baby's still inside the, erm... tummy." he said lamely. "She's not coming out until, er, well, it's quite a space. And, erm, Arabella thinks we're gonna call her after her but, well, I reckon there's only one Arabella!" he grinned sheepishly. Funnily enough, the madcap Arabella they both knew was a million miles from the sensitive Miss Mudd who had just helped Jess with the difficult duty of visiting his mother's body. @Wayfarer @MD
  6. After looking briefly up the stairs, he turned to Raymond, "I don't think Miss Monahan would be capable of understanding what's going on. Besides, Miss Mundee is still up there talking with Mr. Connelly and I'm sure that they both understand that the body will be taken to the funeral parlour. I'll help you carry him over there. I can come back if need be." Raymond listened to Charlie carefully and saw him in a totally new light: until now he, like most of the town, had considered the youngest of the Wentworth clan something of an irresponsible scamp, but his words were wise and spoken with authority: maybe it was the magical tin badge that had wrought this miraculous change, either in Charlie's manner or the way he was perceived. Either way, they were soon off along the short walk from the defunct old funeral parlour to the newer alive and kicking business, Jolly leading the way, like Phlegyas leading the dead across the River Styx, then Charlie at the head of the mobile bier, and, finally, Raymond following behind. Halfway down the street, a scream pierced the dark and what looked, in the gloaming, like a little old widow lady dressed in black with bonnet and shawl came running over. It was Lorenzo's sometime 'business associate' in his photography business, Arabella Mudd. After a sad sigh of "Oh, Lorenzo!" and a kiss to his cold forehead as he lay on the stretcher, for once she stowed the histrionics and instead asked a number of reasonably sensible questions. "Was he shot?" "Who did it?" "What happened?" "Is Bridget all right?" "Do you want a hand?" Jolly answered the final one: "Aye Lass, come along, the poor man'll need washing before we put him in his shroud." The old Scot left the rest of the questions for John Law, in the form of Deputy Wentworth to answer as they trooped along, now a throng of five, including the corpse. @JulieS
  7. Frances heard the distinctive tap of Caroline's heels as she approached and lowered the volume of her playing so she could speak with her in the hubbub of the saloon. "It was nice of you to stick up for me." she smiled up at where she imagined the singer was standing. "I'm used to it, though. What is it they say? 'Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me.'" She smiled gently again, displaying those funny cleated teeth as her eyes rolled in her head behind those green tinted glasses. "I can't imagine anybody's ever rude about you, Caroline. The customers here seem to admire you universally: but if anybody ever did say anything, I hope I would be brave enough to tell them off like you just did to those newcomers." she said "Of course, I'd probably berate totally the wrong person! But it would be the thought that counted." Frances had a gentle sense of humour and was in no way above laughing at herself a little, sometimes. @Wayfarer
  8. "Do you mind if I go through these before I sign them?, " Charles asked, "In the meantime, my wife will be happy to accompany you to check on Miss Monahan, so that she can better assess the situation and what needs to be done." "Of course, I think you will find everything in order, Sir." he stood and gave the documents to the Wentworth patriarch with a reverent bow. Rebecca nodded, "Yes. We're not quite prepared to have another person staying with us. Also she would need a few things, so knowing what she has will help me out tremendously." "Please, allow me to escort you, M'am." Reeve said, offering his arm courteously "I need to visit the place myself to make sure that what is in there matches what is manifested in the last will and testament". ---- They were met at the door of the Old Funeral Parlour by Arabella Mudd, who had the look of someone who had been running around like a chicken with its head cut off - which indeed she had. The immediate shock and sorrow of Lorenzo's death had been quickly replaced by fear: fear that all the photographs he had taken of herself principally, but also of Miriam Kaufmann in 'Historical Tableaux' might be found. She'd spent all morning looking though Crabbe's albums for prints and hiding them. It would be a longer job to check through the glass negatives. "Howdy, Mrs Wentworth, Howdy Mr Reeve." she beamed, "Come on in, I 'spect you're here to see Bridget and offer your condolences." she presumed, understandably enough. "I need to look around in a legal capacity, Miss Mudd, I'm Mr Crabbe's executor." "Well you're too late to execute him, he's already up and died!" Arabella replied. "I need to check everything is here that should be, that nothing's been removed." Arabella looked as guilty as sin. "Well, nobody's been hiding any of his photographs, if that's what you're saying!" she confirmed. Reeve shook his head. "Mrs Wentworth here would like to see Bridget, however." He turned to the gracious lady in question and stooped to take her hand. "Please let me know when you are leaving, Ma'am, and I will escort you back to the bank." he conjured her softly, his gaze lingering. When he had gone, and Rebecca was about to find her way to the newly bereft redhaired waif and stray, Arabella touched her on the arm. "Missus Dubble-yuh!" she gasped wide eyed "May I talk to you fer a second: woman to woman?!!" @JulieS
  9. Javia


    Greene felt the kick of the revolver and only just stopped himself taking a another shot. But he saw very quickly that there was no need. He just hoped there weren't anymore redskins around. He felt incredibly thirsty and pawed for the water canteen hanging from the horse furniture. He took a swig and looked down: he literally could not have dismounted the horse even if he'd tried. Fall off it, maybe, but not dismount. Not and get up again. He looked down, his head swimming. There was the dead Indian, of course, the fallen army scout, who was now a woman, of course, and Caroline with a pebble in her hand, of course (he would always later claim it was a pebble: 'bravest woman I ever met - took on an Arapahoe warrior armed with a pebble') . "Hello, Caroline. Better give your friend some water." he said, leaning forward as much as he dared to hand her the canteen. "Joseph? What the hell you doin' here?" Caroline stared as she dropped the now useless rock. "You know. Heroic things. Rescuing beautiful damsels... or being rescued by them. That sort of thing." It was all like a crazy dream. "I can't get off my horse" he told her a little woozily, pointing to his leg "I got shot." Addy seemed OK if a little dented. "Is that Miss Chappel?" he asked. Some more of his men were appearing nearby - they'd heard the pistol crack. @Bongo @Wayfarer
  10. Javia


    Joseph could later recall very little detail of what happened in the next few seconds on his so-called rescue of the two white women. In fact, from another point of view it could be said that they rescued him. For a start, in his dizzy and weakened state, he had lost all control of the crazed horse beneath him who darting froth into the thick bush, nearly unhorsed him as branches and brambles pulled at him. He held on for dear life using both hands, no thought of his revolver. Addy hissed, "Stay here." She gave Caroline a gentle push back down, then pulled out her small knife and and sprinted back toward the very man trying to find and kill them. He still hung on as a figure he presumed to be a man (was it one of their scouts?) grappled with the redskin in front of him in a whirl of knife play and gun stocks. It gave him the seconds he needed to paw at his unbuckled holster while his horse reared again and the warrior made his way past the flying hooves to get a blow in at himself. But he still didn't have the weapon loaded yet and had no choice now but to try and use it like a club against the waischu above him on the horse. Just maybe luck would be with him and the white man would freeze up or - as happened commonly enough - would forget he had to pull back the hammer of the Single Action revolver to fire the damn thing. It wasn't enough to just pull the trigger. This was exactly what happened, Greene, barely able to grip the revolver in his palsied grip, the long-haired white scout writhing on the ground, pointed the barrel of his handgun at the Indian without pulling the hammer back first. Bodawei must have praised his heathen Gods as the Cavalry officer pulled the trigger... and the double action Chamelot-Delvigne fired with a deafening BANG! at point-blank range. @Bongo @Wayfarer
  11. "No need, boss, I'm right here. Be right with you, Frances, just gimme a minute," Caroline announced. Frances smiled and nodded in the direction Caroline's kind voice came from. She took off her bonnet and shawl, there was a coat hook near the door that the customers never used where she could hang them, and leaned her stick to the wall there, where it wouldn't be disturbed. Then she felt for her piano stool and made sure it was close enough to the keyboard before taking her seat there, quietly running her fingers over the keys. She couldn't help but hear the conversation about her, Caroline bravely confronting the man who had insulted her, the patronising apology, then the sibilant snake like voice of Mr Priest joining the conversation. She said nothing, but joined the conversation in her own way, softly playing a sad little Chopin etude to stretch her fingers. Not exactly Saloon fayre, by now Arabella would have been plink-plonking out The Yellow Rose of Texas, but it was quiet and innocuous, and took her mind off the disturbing conversation at the bar. @Wayfarer @Preston
  12. "I have met Miss Monahan, on a number of occasions, mostly in passing or when we happened to here at the same time," she replied, "I found her to be agreeable and maybe with the right help, she might overcome some of her disadvantages." That sounded positive to Reeve: from what little he knew of Crabbe's ward, that she was a grown up simple-minded cripple, she was not exactly an attractive prospect for a guardian. But Mrs Wentworth sounded like she was already planning the girl's new life. Looking back to Reeves, she smiled, "The least I can do for now is to check on the young lady to make sure that she is fine. However, I would like to know if you require me to start taking care of her immediately or do we he have to wait until the will is read?" Reeve produced the documents with an almost alarming rapidity. "Oh no, if Mr Wentworth were to sign the papers right now, er... you'll excuse the haste, I hope. Every minute Miss Monahan remains without a guardian she is in danger of being taken into the care of the county, probably put in an institution. I believe the Territorial Government is building such a hospital at Warm Springs and, well, even the most modern madhouse is still just that..." @JulieS
  13. Meanwhile, downstairs, the undertaker and his assistant had finished strapping Crabbe's lifeless corpse to the stretcher. The old Scotsman said something to the boy Raymond and the latter approached Charlie Wentworth, still standing somewhat pointlessly at the bottom of the stairs, up which, it seemed, half the town had ascended. Raymond Matthews worked a couple of jobs around town, so knew Deputy Charlie by sight. He'd also snuck into the barn and witnessed the young lawman's defeat in his boxing match with that Irish miner from out of town, Battling Bob Cullen. "Say Deputy, Mr Jolly says I need to inform the Next of Kin that we're moving the deceased. D'you think you'd better come up with me, seeing as it's a young lady? She might not be altogether, well, decent, and I don't want to be associated with any scandalous goings on!" he asked. Raymond was a bit of a prude about such things. "Then afterwards could you see your way clear to helping me with carrying the stretcher? Old Mr. Jolly, he's all right with children and females, but I think Mr Crabbe might be a bit heavy for him, I just strapped him up and he's carrying more timber than you'd think." he asked. Well, it was worth a try, rather than having to stop every few yards while his boss caught his breath. @JulieS
  14. Mrs Wigfall, Hector Wigfall, Jemima Wigfall, the sweet little old lady from Room 7, and the two boarders from the parlour all spilled out onto the street after them, some waving them off with their hands, some waving handkerchiefs, with generic and well meaning shouts of "Goodbye!" "Have a great time!" "Safe travels" and Hector's unmistakable sardonic voice warning cheekily "Don't do anything I wouldn't do!" Even a couple of passers-by stopped to pull out handkerchiefs and join in the waving. As mentioned, entertainment was a commodity hard to come by in Kalispell, in those far off days. "Oh don't they make a lovely couple!" beamed Mrs Wigfall, who had a great blow to her romantic life of late, and felt the resultant void deeply. "You can almost hear the wedding bells." "She's not right for him." replied Jemima flatly, jealousy writ large about her peevish features. @Bailey @Wayfarer [I guess my work here is done].
  15. Javia


    Trooper Johnson never saw the Indian, maybe heard the shot which struck him full in the chest but was unconscious by the time he toppled backwards out of his saddle to strike the ground hard. He would bleed out in just a couple minutes. Greene had been worried all day about making the wrong decisions, now he didn't worry or even think! The crack of the rifle ahead, Johnson biting the dust, himself unable to turn back out of sheer manly pride, unable to dismount and take cover, what with his roughly patched up leg wound, suddenly he was charging forward at a gallop toward the place the shot had come from. The horse beneath him wasn't his usual Daisy, it was the horse of one of the dead troopers, and later on, when trying to sort the events of the day in his own mind, he could not clearly recall whether he had spurred her forward or if she had just carried him with her, intend on some kind of equine revenge for her lost rider. Either way, he was on the redskin, smelt out by the mare while he was still clumsily trying to pull his revolver from its holster, and wondering exactly how many Indians were ambushing him in the fading light. He felt like a mere spectator as the frothing mount whinnied and reared over the dismounted Arapaho warrior. @Bongo @Wayfarer

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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