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    • "Maybe, fer this special occasion," Addy suggested, "we can try a little'a each?  That way, we can get a taste'a everything, so next time, we know what our favorite is."  It was a plan that appealed to her, so she didn't have to decide which she wanted!   "Never turn down help," she declared, "but seems ta me yer th' one needs help brushin' them horses down."  She glanced at Weedy and Josh, considering for a moment if it was safe to let the boy go up into the loft, but then, his father could stop him, and, after all, he was a Chappel!  He'd grown up around horses, and was of hardy stock!   With them all working together, it wouldn't take too long to get the horses settled, and then they could be on the way to treats!   @MD
    • "We'll get on."  Addy was determined, and once she grabbed hold of the crude rope halter, she had control of the animal.  "Here..."  Cupping her hands, she made a step for Caroline, to give her a boost up.  "Just grab his mane."   TBC   @Wayfarer                    
    • Mature Content: Doubt it With: Tyrell Garret Thornton Location: Add specific location information here. When: Mid-July 1876 Time of Day: Encompasses a couple of days     Place holder
    • Anæsthesia wasn't exactly convinced by all these homilies about falling out of trees, breaking arms, and sleeping in the mud: she smiled politely, if a little tightly. Truth to tell, she felt a little bit 'got at' - the snobby girl was getting a taste of her own medicine in the form of the inverted-snobbery of these rough frontier folk.    She suddenly blurted, rather defensively "I have learned to shoot a gun!"   "I have a 1858 model Lefaucheux double action revolver, and really am rather a good shot with it." she said proudly. Now maybe they'd stop telling her that she needed to fall out of a tree to be able to claim that her life had any meaning.    Of course, the hypocrisy was that she was quite willing to tell others what they should be doing with their lives: like learning to read.      @Bongo @MD
    • Mr McVey was chattering away as Arabella grabbed her non-packable items: two dresses, spare bonnet, basket and three large round circles made of bamboo. These were very hard to carry and to manoeuvre through the doorway.    "You and I disagree on a number of things, yet, we agree on others. Mister Reeve is certainly one to keep an eye on. And I would say, he is dangerous in another way, to the political atmosphere in Kalispell. He is an odd fellow, yet, so is Mister Pettigrew. Perhaps the goal of him running is to slit the vote? I'm not exactly confident on that assumption."   "Now don't you be mean about Mr Pettigrew, Mr McVey, he's been right nice to me: teachin' me all about how to speak proper and act like a lady." she objected. Pettigrew had taught her something else, too, something more important than those surface embellishments, something at her very core.    He hoisted the trunk that was surprising lighter than he would have expected. "As time moves on, we'll have a better idea of Pettigrew's purpose in the grand scheme of the elections this fall." He added, then, "I'm following you, Arabella."   "Hold on, I'm all tangled up!" she yelped, the three bamboo circles seemed to have minds of their own and were doing their darndest to stop her getting through the doorway. "I'm takin' these hoops with me, in case crinolines come back in!" she informed him.    Eventually she got herself through the door and down the stairs, with a shout of "I'm goin' now, I'll be back at seven!" at Caroline's door. When the two of them reached the bar, there was a ragged cheer from some of the rounders who were regulars "Don't worry, I'll be back at seven, boys!" she assured them.   "Oh damn!" one of them joked.    "You movin' in with him?!" another joshed. Arabella laughed and didn't say yes and didn't say no: well, Phin had said he didn't care if people talked!   @Flip

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Mature Content: No

Author: Jonah 

With: Leah Steelgrave, Jonah Danforth
Location: Hotel Dining
When: Mid July / 1876
Time of Day: Evening

 

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Jonah made good use of his time, and fortunately, Mrs. Tillery's eggs were well-known to the local bakers, so he'd been able to strike a good bargain with the chef at the Belle-St.Regis, so dinner was taken care of, and now there was a good deal of room in his larder for more 'payments' from his patients!

 

Wearing his best suit -- black trousers and frock coat, as well as a gold-brocade waistcoat -- he made his way back to the Belle-St. Regis, where Leah was going to meet him.  He was looking forward to supper, and conversation that would have a positive, optimistic tone to it for a change!

 

@Flip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This was the happiest she had been in quite sometime, perhaps since the moment she had secured the final right of way, and considered what that would mean to the town, and to her plans for the hospital and the orphanage.

 

She dressed in her favorite gown, as this was a special occasion for her, and Jonah as well. Actually, it was a special occasion for Kalispell, a signal it was moving forward as the Territorial county seat. Given to it as the largest town in the county. Montana was laying the groundwork for statehood, with counties, and the required seat for said county. Though she was unaware of counties appointing or electing and county commissioners, or other county designates, other than Sheriffs to serve those counties.

 

Once dressed and ready she stepped out into the evening, as the three men across the street got to their feet and then followed her into town at a respectable distance, and to the hotel where they stopped as she entered. They would sequester themselves across the street. There was no immediate need for them to be inside.

 

"Good evening Jonah. My don't you look dapper this evening?" She observed. "I am famished!" She announced offering her arm.

@Bongo

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"Dapper?" Jonah chuckled, taking her arm as he ushered her inside.  "I suppose for this back-water town, but I have no intention of going anywhere more modern, so this will do!" 

 

He chuckled, then returned the compliment.  "And you are stunning, even if this was St. Louis or Boston, you would turn heads!"

 

They were escorted to a corner table near the front window, and Jonah sat opposite her after holding her chair for her.  "It's going to be nice to have a positive conversation, to be able to move forward and know the future of things!"

 

The whole dynamic could shift now, and they could start talking about the actual logistics.  "You say you have the materials?  Does that mean there are plans as well?"

 

@Flip

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"Flattery, Doctor, will get you anywhere." Leah stated. "I do so like the window seat with the slipping away. The colors are so beautiful this time of day."

 

They were escorted to a corner table near the front window, and Jonah sat opposite her after holding her chair for her.  "It's going to be nice to have a positive conversation, to be able to move forward and know the future of things!"

 

"Oh isn't it ever!" A statement more than a question, "It seems that for so long it's just been one setback after another, but no more. Tomorrow I will wire for the men and materials to come ahead."

 

The whole dynamic could shift now, and they could start talking about the actual logistics.  "You say you have the materials?  Does that mean there are plans as well?"

 

"Oh yes. I have men and materials standing ready, and yes, there are plans for the hospital. Oh my! It has just taken so long to reach this point, I intend to enjoy every single moment of this!" She was beaming as she spoke. "It will take perhaps a couple of weeks for them to arrive, oh wait, they should be in Polson, down at the base of Flathead Lake, so sooner than that."

@Bongo

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"That's good to hear," Jonah agreed with a smile, "you'll be able to get things started well before the bad weather sets in."  He assumed that she knew of builders, and who could clear the land, and...well, now that he thought about it, there were a lot of details to building something as large as a hospital that he'd never even considered before.  Of course, it wasn't his problem, he would be looking at a totally different aspect of the operation.

 

"I'll have to find out how long it's expected to take, so I can figure out when to order equipment."  He sort of had a list of the major equipment, and some of the lesser things, but it was still 'sort of'.  "I'll have to get with Dr. Boone to see what he suggests."  It dawned on him that this was really going to happen, and his headaches were about to start!

 

The waiter came by and Jonah ordered champagne.  "We're celebrating!"  Then he waited for Leah to order what she wanted to eat.

 

@Flip

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Leah actually giggled, "Oh Jonah, let's not get in a panic, I shouldn't think this will be completed for months yet, possibly next June, if everything goes as planned." She said. "Oh, I'm sorry," she said to the waiter, "Perhaps a steak, medium rare, no, just medium will be fine. And whatever comes with it aside from beans." She looked at the young man and smiled.

 

"So, Jonah, here's the problem, the men I that I retained are the best at what they do from clearing the land to the actual construction. My family has used them before and were quite satisfied. They build the Evergreen in a matter of months. But they began at the end of May and finished in early September. We won't have that luxury, I'm afraid."

@Bongo

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"Perhaps Mother Nature will smile on your project and hold off the worst of her wrath for a few weeks?"  It would be hard to have to wait with the project half-done, and he could easily imagine the damage that could be done to the partly-built building just sitting there.

 

"I suppose we'll see, at least get as far into it as possible." 

 

He paused as the waiter returned with champagne, pouring a small amount into a flute for him to taste, and after he nodded approval, two flutes were filled.

 

Once the waiter moved away, Jonah raised his glass, smiling.  "To the Kalispell Hospital and Home for Children, and the continued success!"

 

@Flip

 

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She smiled at the toast, as it reflected her wishes exactly. She raised her glass and took sip. "We have a lot to look forward to. And yes, I too wish that we could have gotten started in the spring as I had hoped, but local politics and a certain amount of greed as well as prejudice have us where we are."

 

A bigger crew of workers might speed things up, something she would look into. If they could get the framing and walls up, and the roof on The rest could either be worked on over the winter months, or wait for spring. That was a good idea, but her knowledge of construction was limited, but she would check.

 

"I'm not sure what has come over Ben Robertson, it seemed like he was the sticking point with Richard Orr. No matter, I'm just thrilled that this is finally coming together, for all of us." She said with a bright smile.

@Bongo

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"I just hope they don't find a way to stop things," Jonah commented, immediately regretting even bringing that up...there was no sense in dredging up negative possibilities while they were celebrating victory.

 

"At least now the worrying will be over progress," he added, "and that will be far more pleasant than the process so far."  There would undoubtedly be set-backs, but at least those would be related more to circumstances and not stupid, petty people!

 

He smiled then, and said off-handedly, "And I understand you want to paint the building pink and orange, so it stands out?"  A means of lightening up the conversation!

 

@Flip

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"At least now the worrying will be over progress," he added, "and that will be far more pleasant than the process so far."  There it was, that feeling that no matter how good things seemed to be going, they could not be sure something or someone, wouldn't upset the apple cart. But rather than fall back into the doubt and fear, she smiled brightly. "Not a Chance, Jonah, not a chance. This will get done tomorrow morning, and we'll get on with it!"

 

She was too happy to allow anything to upset the evening. "At least now the worrying will be over progress," he added, "and that will be far more pleasant than the process so far." 

 

"Yes, but that is to be expected under the best of circumstances." She was aware of delays and such things, and that had to be an accepted part of such an undertaking It was he statement about her choice of colors for the place. "What? Jonah Danforth! Wherever did you get such a notion. It will be stark white as a hospital should be, with perhaps a suitable trim for a pop of color." Then she laughed, she had not even thought of paint.

@Bongo

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There it was, that spontaneous, unrestrained laugh, and Jonah couldn't help but laugh with her.  "I thought it would be rather fashionable, and certainly distinct!"  He took another sip of the champagne, letting the bubbles tickle the inside of his mouth for a second, then asked, "If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?"

 

Of course, it could be argued that she could go anywhere if she chose...she had the money, and there wasn't anything to tie her here, besides the hospital project, but before that...

 

"I'd go to Paris," he mused, "or maybe Constantinople."

 

@Flip

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"Oh. Paris, yes. And Rome perhaps, oh I don't know, Jonah, I'd never really thought of leaving the country. Kalispell, even Montana, yes, I have thought of San Francisco, or New York, even St. Louis or New Orleans. But now? I couldn't think of leaving here now, I mean, even if somehow the hospital situation forced a relocation to Columbia Falls, I couldn't dream of leaving until it's complete." She went from laughing to an earnest woman determined to see her project through.

 

But then she had invested so much of herself in the dreaming and planning for it, leaving, or just the thought of it, was out of the question. But when it was done, then she could do whatever she wanted, go wherever she wanted. That was till a ways off.

@Bongo

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"Of course you wouldn't leave," Jonah commented with a smile.  The question had been rhetorical, an attempt to get her talking about something else, but of course, she was passionate and excited about the hospital project.   Hopefully, it would be all she was imagining, and wouldn't be a let-down once there was no active project to do.  But then, he imagined that Miss Leah Steelgrave would find another passion, if she didn't already have one waiting for its time.

 

"If things go as planned, Kalispell will rival some of those towns, at least as far as it can be, considering that we're quite remote."  But maybe one day they'd have a proper opera house, a library, a school that was more than a small, single-room...

 

"It will grow, no doubt, because of the hospital.  Given a choice, people will want to live close to a hospital."  He chuckled and shrugged.  "You'd think the town council would be drooling over the potential taxes."

 

@Flip

 

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"Oh lord!" She exclaimed, "I hadn't thought of the tax money that would be available and maybe that is the plan, although who builds the thing is not who'll be tax liable. Hmm, food for thought as I'm sure Robertson has thought of the tax revenue that would be possible, not that there's a lot of taxation in Kalispell.

 

"Land tax is almost non-existent. The big ranches don't pay anything that I'm aware of, and businesses, not all that much, some kind of sliding scale based on annual profits." She smiled. "You know, no matter how they will assess taxation on the hospital, it won't be a great deal, but to the town, it will be a boon!"

@Bongo

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"There will still be new businesses to support the hospital, new residents."  Grinning, Jonah shrugged.  "Politicians will find all manner of ways to raise revenue, and they are quite creative in that."

 

The food arrived and he thanked the waitress, then smiled.  "It smells good!"  Better than most of his daily fare, but then, his 'daily fare' was no different from most people, and it made a treat like this all the better!

 

"Regardless, the more 'civilized' institutions we have in the territory, the better the chances at statehood, so projects like this can only be beneficial."

 

@Flip

 

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"Exactly what Governor Houser said when I was i Helena last winter working towards this. And you are correct, the hospital will bring in new businesses and new homes. It will bring people, doctors, nurses, dare I say a higher class of citizens without sounding uppity about it. But Jonah, it is true." she replied as she looked over her supper appreciatively the smells of the food wafting up to tantalize her senses.

 

"You know, they say we eat with our eyes first, I'm thinking the noses come in a close second." She explained, "This is such a treat. I cannot wait for tomorrow and the end of this bickering over progress, and who gets to make it. The town can't afford to build it, and it it's not the Steelgrave's or the Thornton's to do it, then all of the work withers on the vine and Kalispell get nothing. Maybe that's how the Orr's and the Robertson's want it." Then she smiled. "But, that's not going to happen this time."

@Bongo

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"They have taken on a formidable opponent," Jonah observed, "and, because of your fair sex, I believe they have underestimated you, but that is their downfall."

 

So often, men tended to judge someone 'beneath' them, be it because of gender, race, social status, and think that they are incapable of doing anything well.  And that was a huge advantage for Leah, and even better, she knew that and embraced it.

 

He took a bite of the steak and smiled.  "For a back-water town, they surely know how to make a good steak!"  At least the evening was well-worth it, the food was an amazing treat, and the company even moreso!

 

"I think there are good things ahead for Kalispell, so long as it is managed properly."  Not that he was interested in managing anything!

 

@Flip

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Leah smiled at the idea of Kalispell being managed properly, not that with the right men was that not possible, but so far, at least in her estimation, the wrong people were at the helm, and heading for the rocks. "Perhaps, Jonah. perhaps. We'll have to wait and see. So far I'm not sure we'll get the right people in a position of authority to make good things possible for Kalispell, as much as I would like to see that happen. But things change, people change. All things are actually possible."

 

Yet to her all things meant good and bad, and even though the pendulum needed to swing in a different direction, she worried that it would be more of the same. "And yes, good things are on Kalispell's horizon, if only it could be let through. Perhaps that is in the future, even the immediate future, what with the railroad coming. That will be a great day for this town."
@Bongo

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Railroad, civilization, prim ladies forming society...as much as Leah was excited for Kalispell to grow, eventually it would be too big for Jonah and he'd have to move on.  Fortunately, that was a few years off, and maybe he'd feel differently by then...maybe circumstances will have changed by then.

 

"The railroad would certainly make getting equipment here more efficient," he commented, "as much as Miss Chappel is reliable, it takes much longer to have things shipped to Helena, then hauled in here.  Some of the equipment is rather delicate, and bouncing over these roads doesn't do it any good!"

 

Not to mention, if he ever had to go anywhere, he'd much rather take a train than a stage!

 

"I'm surprised those heathens on the town council aren't opposing the train, unless they happen to own  some coincidentally placed land."

 

@Flip

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Posted (edited)

The railroad would certainly make getting equipment here more efficient," he commented, "as much as Miss Chappel is reliable, it takes much longer to have things shipped to Helena, then hauled in here.  Some of the equipment is rather delicate, and bouncing over these roads doesn't do it any good!"

 

Not to mention, if he ever had to go anywhere, he'd much rather take a train than a stage!

 

"Yes, that's true, and I'm afraid that for the foreseeable future that is how everything will arrive, jostled and bounced in the back of wagons. I'm afraid that the railroad is a ways off yet." Leah explained, suddenly realizing that it may be some time before the actual rails would be laid, but it would be coming through Kalispell in the near future, and the town had the right of ways, which she had mistakenly give to Judge Robertson

 

"I'm surprised those heathens on the town council aren't opposing the train, unless they happen to own  some coincidentally placed land."

 

"I can imagine, Jonah, that they are frothing to get there hands on the prime locations, and then, perhaps not. A station will be constructed which I'm told will house a warehouse for goods coming and going aside from the ticket office and waiting room." She said. "I want the hospital a ways from it and the noise it will bring." It was clear to her that the arrival of the rails would expand the town.

@Bongo

Edited by Flip (see edit history)

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"You are right on that, sick people have enough to deal with, they don't need all the noise and commotion."  Jonah grinned.  "And neither do I, not to mention the stress all the vibration would put on the equipment." 

 

Those were things that people didn't think about, until it was a done deal and too late to change.

 

"Do you know where they are planning to run the tracks?"  Or was that just speculation at this point?  There were so many politics involved, and land speculation, so people might try to make a good guess and buy up the property so they could sell it to the railroad at an outrageous profit. 

 

"Just our luck they'd decide to run it by the hospital, even if you put it in the middle of a river in a narrow canyon!"

 

@Flip

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No, no that is already laid out, surveyed sometime back they'll be out again, but the route is laid already. And, they wanted Kalispell as a stop, a regular stop, not just for passengers on or off, but for all manner of supplies.There is a plan for Kalispell to feed those supplies to the entire area." She explained. "Columbia Falls is out of the way, the road will head north after leaving town here and then west, although, there was talk of blasting though the mountains."

 

"Now, the plan for the hospital will be east of town proper for that very reason. I have spent a good deal of time looking since we did. East is open and a good place for it and the orphanage. Far enough  from town to help muffle the noise of the trains, which is what will wok the best. I did mean to get you to go with me, but I understood you were busy, and, you were involved with Miss Aoife Leane, I believe she was your nurse, and I didn't want to intrude."
@Bongo

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"I hired the young woman, yes," Jonah defended, "but that was the only involvement."  He wasn't really sure why he wanted to make that clear.  "She was a good worker, knowledgeable, it was a pity to lose her."  Not only losing her as a worker, but now, with a vacancy for a nurse, he was afraid that one Jemima Wigfall would get wind and want to 'help'.

 

"I'm sure you put in considerations in the location that I wouldn't have even thought about."  He grinned.  "I would have been smart enough not to put it in the middle of town, or next to the 'gentleman's club', otherwise, I would have just plopped it anywhere!"

 

Another advantage on the east side, was that it was closer to his home, so he wouldn't have so far to travel if he was called out in the middle of the night, but that was a ways off.

 

"Maybe tomorrow, after the deal is sealed, we should wire Dr. Boone and give him the news?"  Certainly, the man would be elated!

 

@Flip

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"A splendid thought! I'm sure he'll be glad to know about the progress. I only wish we could have him here, working with us." She paused, "But we'll get a staff you can count on, I'm sure of that. Nurses, other physicians. And locals that need employment in a range of positions. That will be costly, but I've prepared for that eventuality."

 

She smiled across at him, "Now, perhaps we'll find you another nurse as competent as she was, and another doctor as good as Josiah is, if he can't always be on hand here, what with his practice in Columbia Falls. Don't you think?"

@Bongo

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"I'd be happy for any help right now.  Mrs. Tillery does a good job keeping the clinic clean, and she's an amazing cook, but yes, a good nurse would take off some of the burden." 

 

He savored another bite of steak, then commented, "I'd love to lure Dr. Boone back, but even so, he's...well..." how to put it delicately? "of an age that he'll be wanting to slow down.  And besides, new blood will be helpful.  It's probably a good idea to start thinking about that sooner than later, so that those arrangements are in place before the building is ready."

 

Yes, there was a lot of planning still ahead, and Jonah didn't want to be caught behind, but there was no good way to not jump the gun and start the internal logistics too soon...

 

"I'm afraid I don't have much good experience with planning this sort of thing.  I suppose I'll have to learn."  If he didn't get spooked and light out before the hospital was done.

 

@Flip

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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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