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    • James smiled back, forgetting again that she could not see it.  Truthfully he would be hard pressed to stop himself from doing such things even in her presence but for those who had sight, they would struggle to imagine how she lived as well as she did without it.  It was as ingrained in him as it was for her doing without.  Because he’d been raised at all-male boarding schools, the young British man had very limited experience with the fairer sex, this was simply a fact, one that James had no trouble acknowledging.   When she joked with the Marshall regarding being weighed down with metal coins, James chuckled at her jest, stopping suddenly as something occurred to him.  “I say!”  He exclaimed, then rushed on, “Have you ever given thought to folding each kind of bill in a different way so that you can tell which is which?”  He caught his breath then, waiting to see what she or the Marshall thought of his latest idea.  If she needed his assistance in the folding, he'd be happy to help her.   As she suspected, James was obvious to the fact that she was gently flirting with him, taking everything at face value, his inexperience with the fairer sex once again rearing it’s head.  He caught something of the heat that colored her cheeks, and the errant thought passed through his mind that she might be falling ill.  Not uncommon so soon after the passing of a loved one.
    • He tried to make it sound important enough that she should be interested in local politics but really what good did being interested do her? She could not change anything. She could not vote so to hell with it. The people she lived with, worked with were what was important to her. But she wasn't going to argue with him about it.   "Sure, I reckon," Caroline shrugged.   Then handsome young soldier...correction, officer now launched into a nice long tale of his family roots. It was fascinating really he knew all that much about his family history and those who came before. She didn't know a damn thing about such things in her own life. She was pretty damn sure the woman she called Ma had been the one to give birth to her but she was not positive. And there was even more doubt about her father or step father. No matter, they had been a family and stuck together til two out of three died. So now it was just her. Well, her and her saloon family.   "Interestin'," she nodded, enjoying the way he told the story as much as the actual story.   "So you see, in a hundred years time... the president of the United States will be tracing his roots back to a beautiful saloon singer in old Kalispell and a tramp in the street'll be vaguely aware that he is descended from the once great Greenes of Vermont." He shrugged. "Who cares, rich man, poor man, beggar man thief." he looked into the depths of her blue eyes "... or lady, baby, gypsy, queen."   "Not gonna happen that way. I'm never gonna get married and I ain't gonna have any children so no one is descendin' from me, hon. But I liked yer tellin' of it," she liked him, this dinner date had turned out better than she had figured it would.          
    • "Ah yeah, the mayor's election. Why should I care who wins? I can't even vote in it, "Caroline waved it off. Oh she would clap for and cheer on Mr. Priest whom her boss was pushing to win but she personally did not give a damn.   Greene shrugged. "Maybe not, but the person who's elected could make your life a lot better or a whole lot worse. You ever hear of a abomination that goes by the name of a 'dry county'? The poor b... er, denizens of a place like that probably didn't realise until too late what they were voting in." he laughed, although it was no laughing matter: reformers and prohibitionists were even in these early decades starting to make their voices heard.    He then mentioned being interested in listening to her and Ara perform.   "Please do. I don't want to sound like I'm braggin' but most folks say I've got a real nice singing voice. I admit my dancing is not that special but I just show them a little leg.......or more than a little...and they clap alright," she informed him.   "I can imagine!" he smiled. But it was a nice smile. A friendly smile. Not the sort of lascivious smile that indicated that he already had been imagining... frequently.    They talked of the famous Dance.   "Yeah, must have been before I arrived in town. No local dances for me yet...besides I got a feelin' my sort would not be welcomed at any such town affair. Those things are for proper folks."   Greene frowned. He didn't like to think of this beautiful woman being denigrated in any way: though he was not unaware of the snobby often hypocritical attitude of those who felt them selves a cut above the type of folks who worked in certain professions, including soldiers - at least the non-commissioned kind. Sometimes with good reason, often times not.   "You know, one of my aunts once had our family tree drawn up, just like the noble families of Europe. The fellow who did it even drew it like a tree, leaves, and apples, and all. We're real Vermont blue-bloods, you see, despite the green name. Aunt Mary-Anne expected our forefathers to have come across on the Mayflower, or with Captain Smith to Jamestown."   He smiled happily at the memory of it.   "Imagine her delight when the feller delivered our family tree and revealed that the first Greene to set foot on American soil was an indentured servant, a virtual slave, who'd been transported here for, get this, stealing apples from some rich lord's orchard!"    He enjoyed the memory of his snobby aunt's discomfort for a moment then returned to the present.   "So you see, in a hundred years time... the president of the United States will be tracing his roots back to a beautiful saloon singer in old Kalispell and a tramp in the street'll be vaguely aware that he is descended from the once great Greenes of Vermont." He shrugged. "Who cares, rich man, poor man, beggar man thief." he looked into the depths of her blue eyes "... or lady, baby, gypsy, queen."   @Wayfarer        
    • "Debate, you dumb bitch, it's called a debate," Caroline mumbled under her breath but the woman figured it out just then too.   Priest wasn't going to be rushed though. He would reveal all later was all he would promise. In that way the man was a true politician, promises a whole lot, she'd see if he actually delivered on anything. The politicians in Chicago had been crooked, the mayor of Helena had been well meaning but a bumbling fool, and the one here in Kalispell was ......well, she didn't even know who the hell that was, he was pretty much invisible. The town seemingly had been run by that one council member before he lit himself on fire.   Just then they got themselves a trio of new customers, rough looking lot but a customer was a customer. Fortner invited them to have a drink and they promptly bellied up to the bar. Of course Ralph was there, waiting to hear what they'd like.   "Three whiskies," one of the men said, after reaching into his coat and putting down some coinage.   "Sure nuff, comin' right up," Ralph nodded and reached for one of the cheap bottles, he was a pretty good judge of customers' taste and proclivities. He poured three shots of the powerful liquor.   Caroline swung into saloon girl mode too, sashaying up to the one lined up at the bar closest to her, gifting him with a bright smile, "Welcome! Have a long ride, did ya, hon?"    
    • He gazed up at the domed ceiling and was awe struck at it's beauty. He was taken aback by the obvious talent that it took to create such a beautiful thing. "Dang near as pretty as you, Em." was his comment. "Took 'em a while to get that done. Never seen the like."   And that was a fact. There had been nothing that he had seen before to compare to the glass domed ceiling, nothing. He suddenly felt out of place, something odd for him to feel, at any time, in any place, but it struck him here in this place. The sheer beauty of it touched him. What man could accomplish given the opportunity   "Now 'at's somethin'. Best we see what other marvels they got in this place. May not have time ta see everything." He pointed out. @Bongo
Henry S. Guyer II

A Gathering of Storm Clouds

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Mature Content: Probably not, maybe some lingo.

With: Marshalls McNue & Cook, possible others
Location: Add specific location information here.
When: Mid July 1876
Time of Day: Afternoon




Town Marshal Speed Guyer sat at his desk in his office ruminating about the new he had received from Hector Wigfall and from Jacob Lutz. Tom Love was just one man, and he knew nothing of him, or his abilities as a gunman, but Case Steelgrave was another matter altogether. He knew plenty about him and the crowd he ran with. The gang he ran was more like it. The town of Whitefish had allowed him to run them almost in the open. But with no County Sheriff, nothing was ever brought to trail about him or his men. The Storm of '75 ended that, wiping out Whitefish, his stronghold. And they had been on the move for the most part ever since.


True, they had had their chance to convict Case, but a big city lawyer had ended that hope winning an acquittal.  Would they come to Kalispell? The Evergreen? Their hideout? Anywhere else and any direction? The choices were all his, so combining to the two, Love and Steelgrave, well, that just made things all that much worse, and no Pronto Pike to stand with him.


He did not hear or see them ride up to the hitch rail in the front of the Municiple Building, and until the opened the front down and stated for the office he hadn't heard them, however their jingling spurs announced their arrival long before they opened the door and stepped inside..


"Whatcha cogitatin' on Guyer? Somepan got ya treed?" Cook asked.


"You boys ever hear of a Tom Love? Supposed to be a gun hand of some repute."


"Yep." McNue said flatly. "I ain't real sure how much of a gun hand he is, killed him a few, ain't too sure any was a stand up fight."


"Bad as that Wallace Oldham! Back shootin' son of a buck!" Cook was shaking his head. "Find him around the minin' camps over't Butte, Wise River, that area. Why?"


"Well, while you two were out sight seeing, got word both are headed this way. Tom Love, Case Steelgrave, with maybe a dozen hard cases, with him. They ain't together."


"Oh, now we heard about Steelgrave and that crooked lawyer that got him off. Might make ya feel some better ta know  he was killed. Caught cheatin' at cards up in Helena. Sad thing that, he shoulda know'd better." McNue recited.


"Too bad. He was slick alright. So, now you've heard the bad news. And that would be plenty of it. Depends on where the Steelgrave outfit is headed and what plans he might have for this place. Tom Love? Can't say."


"You reckon Case'd throw in with his pa over this hospital fiasco?" Cook asked. It ell quiet for a moment.


"That? I don't know." Speed replied. "Count on you boys to stick around?"


McNue and Cook exchanged looks then both nodded that they would.


"Guess I best tell Miss Steelgrave, and her men." Speed informed them as he got to his feet, then he did something new for him, he opened the bottom desk drawer and took out a gun belt and holster, a left hand holster and strapped in on over his right hand rig,  Lastly he took out another Colt, four and three quarter inch barrel, front sight removed, and dropped it into the holster. "Man outta be prepared."


           Cook                   McNue


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As Speed left the office and headed for Leah Steelgraves residence on East Oregon Street the weight of the extra gun gave him pause to consider what may lie ahead. Tom Love was an unknown and that made him almost more dangerous than Case and his men. A dozen, if not more of the dregs of Montana. Warning her was the sensible thing to do, her and her men. It dawned on him, with Cook and McNue, that would be six against twelve or more.


At the office to two men sat a long moment, each with his ow thoughts about what might be coming when John Cook said, "Gettin' a mite long in the tooth for this sortta thing, but, I guess we got it to do, eh Bill.


McNue nodded as he looked at his long time partner. Been in some scrape, you an me, guess one more ain't gonna make much difference. Guyer, he just strapped on another iron, like it was all in a days work. Damn!"


"That cushy job in Helena sortta took us outta that day to day doins of bein' a lawman." Cook related.


"Hell John, this'll be fun. They don't know it's you an' me they're up agin. By doggies!" McNue stated.


They sat across the street where he would expect them to be. Bannister, McKinney and Santee, each nodded to him as he walked up to the door of the clapboard house, thinking how it really was not where one would expect to find her. He rapped lightly.


Leah, almost surprised at the knock rose from the settee and went to the door, opening it see Marshal Guyer, which gave her cause to smile. "Marshal, do come in." She offered. "A pleasant surprise, indeed. I have water on for tea if you'd like a cup."


"I'm afraid this isn't a social call, but yes that sounds fine." He replied almost hesitantly. "I'm afraid I've word that your brother, Case, is headed back this way and he has a number of men with him."


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"Is that so? Not that I doubt you Marshal, not at all, I guess it's just a reaction to here we go again." She remarked. "I wondered if he might decide at some point to come back this way. And he has his minions with him. How many, do you know?"


"I've been told a dozen, but I really can't say for sure, although I tend to believe the man who said he saw them." Speed commented, he was just going off of Jacob Lutz's story, which he had no reason to doubt. "He was described accurately."


"Well then I would assume he would be heading for the back country where he has a place. If the law is after him, well, with no State authorities, they can do very little. Have you heard anything from any other lawmen?"


"No, not to this point, there was something about Big Flat, a mining camp to the south where there was trouble, and your brother was there, but all of it is unclear and hearsay. Now, if there is anything that happens up here, I am authorized to assume the duties of the County Sheriff, and, I have two Marshals from the Governors service at my disposal." Speed detailed for her.


"And your man Pike, he's still away?" She asked.


"Yes, last I knew he was in San Francisco, a bit far to rush back here, and how do we know Case will try anything here? We don't."


"Ah, San Francisco, yes." Leah smiled. "He hates you Speed Guyer, hates you with a passion." Her tone was matter of fact. "He will want to kill you, but he will be the one that comes for you not any of his lackeys. It will be face to face, you can rely on that."


Speed, standing hat in hand also smiled. "I assumed it would be that way. It's what his men might decide to do that concerns me. Case and I, a matter of accuracy, when it comes to that. I doubt that will be the first thing he's planning."


"And you could be right. Let me get that tea, the water is boiling."



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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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