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Bloody Jack Asher Comes to Town


Guest Chistery
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Guest Chistery

Mature Content: Not sure yet

With: Jack Asher, Matilda Devereau, Ralph Flandry, Other Saloon Patrons
Location: Kalispell, Belle-St. Regis, Stardust Saloon
When: September 1875
Time of Day: Late Afternoon/Early Evening

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It was mid afternoon when Jack Asher, Pinkerton Detective, rode into town. By the time he'd ridden into town, his main mount, his spare mount, and his pack horse were all pretty tired. It was a warmish September afternoon and Jack had doffed his coat a while back. His practically brand new 1875 Remington .44-40 Revolvers, a gift from Allan Pinkerton himself, a reward for a job done really well, could be seen in their shoulder holsters, butts forward, worn that way so he could draw either one with either hand easily. And quickly. Jack had been taught to shoot when he was 11 years old, nearly a quarter century ago, and had taken up the way of the gun at 14. In that time he'd learned to draw fast, but more importantly smooth, to move his body in a way that pulled the holsters away from the pistols at the same time he was pulling the pistols from the holsters, and to place the pistol in such a way that he hardly had to aim to hit his target, long as that target was a person and within near pistol shot.

His trousers were tucked into his boots and protruding from the top of the right boot, outboard of the leg, was the handle of a fair-sized Bowie knife. In a sheath on one side of his saddle was a 10-gauge coach gun, in a sheath on the other side was an 1873 Winchester carbine, in .44-40 like the pistols so he could carry the same ammunition for both. There was even a spot for his Blackthorn shillelagh, which he kept around in case heads needed busting.

Jack wanted to get a drink, but he figured his horses had been decent enough to carry his carcass and his gear all the way up from New Mexico, the least he could do was get them seen to before he took care of himself. He found boarding house and a boy there saw to his horse and tack. Jack paid for a bath and the owners made arrangement to launder his dirty clothing after he had bathed and shaved and changed into his spare clothes. He'd get a haircut later. First he wanted food and drink. It was early evening by the time he walked through the doors to the Stardust Saloon, pistols under his armpits, knife in his boot. His other weapons were locked away in his room. He walked up to the bar and took a seat. He audibly set down a dollar coin on the bar.

"Whiskey, when you got a minute," Jack said. "And a beer, and I could do with a meal, too, if there's food to be had."

 

TAG Devereau, Flanders

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A normal enough afternoon for the saloon, a few customers were scattered between the long bar and the assorted tables. One card game was going on among four men, the stakes were cheap and the game friendly.  Ralph was manning the bar by himself though this evening. Didn't look like it was going to be real crowded this night.  He noticed the newcomer come in of course but waited til the man seemed ready to make an order.

 

"Sure nuff, one whiskey comin' up," he nodded even as he reached for a bottle of the cheap stuff. If customers wanted the good stuff (which of course cost more), they needed to ask for it.

 

The man also desired a beer and inquired about some food. Both requests reasonable enough.

 

Ralph poured a shot glass to the brim as he added, "Get that beer for ya in a minute. We do have beef stew. Most folks who've tried it say it's damn good stew. Thick n' meaty."

 

He then set the shot glass in the front of the fellow, "That'll be a nickel."

 

@Chistery

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Guest Chistery

Jack lay a nickle on the bar. He'd take the cheap stuff for now, depending on how cheap. Truth was, he didn't really like whisky or beer for that matter. But getting applejack and hard cider wasn't always easy and sometimes drew some strange looks if he asked for them. So cheap or expensive, as long as it cut the trail dust, it was fine with him.

 

"I'll take the stew," Jack said. He sipped his whiskey and suppressed a grimace. "I saw as I rode in I saw this town has itself a marshal's office. You got a marshal to go with it?"

 

@Flandry

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Ralph slid the nickel along the bar until it dropped into his second hand and then popped it into his bartender's apron pockets. He was already moving to fulfill the man's request for a beer.  He tapped it from a big keg then set the glass down in front of the man.

 

"Here ya go, I can go get you a big bowl of the stew then," he nodded but the man had a question that had nothing to do with saloon products. Ralph listened then answered.

 

"Well, we got one alright. But I think the old one retired recently. Think they got a new one but I'll be damned if I know his name. I don't much pay attention to politics and the local law, not my concern," Ralph did his best to explain.

 

@Chistery

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Jack frowned. How does the owner of a saloon not pay attention to local law? What lawman worth his salt doesn't acquaint himself with the local saloon so as to make sure there's no trouble? Sounded like the town marshal might be useless. Jack decided he'd make a point of not frequenting the saloon very much. A saloon that the local law doesn't visit is bound to be somewhere there would be trouble. Jack could handle trouble, but his solutions to those kinds of problems tended to be a bit... permanent. His status as a Pinkerton detective usually protected him from running afoul of the law when that happened, but there had been some close calls. Might be he'd be taking his meals somewhere else from now on. He'd have to stop in a see the man and see just what kind of town this was.

"You get much trouble in here?" he asked. "What with the marshal not making his presence known in your establishment, I mean. A saloon the town law don't set foot in... seems to me people might decide they could act with impunity."

 

@Wayfarer

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"It's a saloon. On occasion there has been some trouble. But I've been in saloons since the war and I know how to handle myself. My partner is the same.  We got no complaints. As for the law, they'd come if we needed them I reckon," Ralph smirked.

 

"There was one big brawl not that long ago. The town was having it's summer festival and we'd set up a beer tent on the festival grounds. Things were going smoothly and then some girl came waltzin' in looking for a couple of cowpokes.  There was quite the argument, that little miss wouldn't back down. One of the men punched her right to the ground. Well, that set it all off. Matilda and me managed to save most of our glasses though in the mayhem. No gunplay."

 

"Oh yeah, the deputy marshal is a woman and she was in there punching with the rest of 'em. It was really quite entertaining. You shoulda seen it," he grinned at the memories.

 

@Chistery

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Jack gave a slight smile. "I've always believed women to be as tough as men," he said. "Tougher if you think about it, considering the way the world treats 'em and such. I'll have to stop in and see at least that deputy tonight or tomorrow. Always like to be on friendly terms with local law, in case I have settle any kind of misunderstanding with some one who thinks I'm an easy mark or weak target. I'm less likely to get tossed in jail or worse, shot, if the law in town knows who I am," Jack held out his hand. "Jack Asher." he said, by way of introducing himself.

 

@Wayfarer

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large.Santee.jpg.65fa471a3d5e69037dc731adbec0a8dc.jpglarge.Bannister.jpg.3d67264177c1d3b22854174d44c1f1ac.jpg

With Miss Leah back at the hotel until dinner, Bannister and Santee decided to have a drink and while they were at it see what information might be had in the Stardust Saloon. Saloons were more than a pace to have drinks and maybe something to eat, they were a clearing house for information, range conditions, current temperament of the Indians, politics, to stage schedules, anything of interest to most anyone.

 

The two men pushed through the bat wings into the room. The full doors were not yet in use as the temperature was still moderate. The walked up to the bar, missing nothing, a handful of  men were at the tables, a friendly looking card game in the corner, and a man seated at the bar.

 

Both men were known in Kalispel as they were often seen with Missus Steelgrave, or, as they were now with Miss Steelgrave. It was Bannister that spoke up; "Evenin' Flandry, couple whiskeys  if you please." Santee laid four bits on the bar.

 

Tag @Wayfarer@Chistery

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"Have to agree with you about the wimmenfolk. You should see the co-owner of this place. Smart as a whip and don't scare none either," the bartender then extended his hand to shake with the newcomer.

 

"Jack.....I'm Ralph, Ralph Flandry," they exchanged a vigorous handshake.

 

Two new customers came in about then, Ralph knew them to be cowpokes for the Steelgraves though rumor had it many of his so-called ranch hands might be better described as gun hands. These two sure looked like it. However it was none of his business, long as they didn't make trouble in the saloon.

 

"Couple a whiskeys comin' up," Ralph took his attention off Jack for an instant to address the latest customer request.

 

"Lemme get these two gents their drinks then I'll go in the back and get you that beef stew," he went back to talking to Jack.

 

Just then a feminine voice called out from in back, "Don't bother, Ralph. I can bring it out long as I'm here."

 

Ralph then served the Evergreen men their drinks while less than a minute later a petite blonde woman in a fancy back East dress emerged from the back carrying a tray with a bowl and spoon upon it. She eyed Asher and correctly guessed this was the man with the order so placed it right in front of him.

 

"There you go, mister. Enjoy it. If you need some salt, I can bring you some too, better taste it first," Matilda declared with a warm grin.

 

@Chistery@Flip

 

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Jack covertly assessed the nature of the two newcomers without looking directly at them, a skill he'd picked up as a Pinkerton Detective. To Jack, it was absolutely clear the two were more hired gun than cowpoke. He said nothing to them for the time being. A person could learn a lot just by listening to other folks talk. Usually, if you gave a someone even freedom to flap their jaws, they'd give up what you wanted to know before they even knew you wanted to know it.

Besides, there was an attractive woman to devote a bit of his attention to. When Matilda came back with his stew, Jack met her eyes and smiled at her. "Thank you, Miss," he said. "This smells real good. Bet it tastes better." The Pinkerton detective held out his hand to Matilda. "Jonathan Jacob Asher. Call me Jack."

 

@Wayfarer @Flip

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