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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

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Mature Content: No

With: Sarah Thornton-Carlton and Matt Wentworth
Location: Belle-St. Regis Hotel
When: Late September 1875
Time of Day: Morning

 

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Sarah stretched a little before making the attempt to get out of bed.  The sun had already been out for a while but she was in no hurry to get up.  The trip here had taken more out of her then she realised and except for a trip to the ladies bathroom to get a much needed bath, she had spent most of yesterday in her room.  Thankfully, the hotel did have some sort of room service so that she could have her meals without having to go downstairs.

 

There was a lot to do today with the most important task of getting word out to Lost Lake Ranch and her cousin to tell him about her arrival.  She needed to find someone who was reliable and trustworthy enough to pay to go out there or better still if one of the ranch hands.  The preference was to find a ranch hand and considering the size of Lost Lake, there should be at least one coming into town on a daily basis to get supplies or the mail.

 

After getting dressed, she sat down to write her note to Shade.  When that was done, she wrote out a list of what she needed to do in town.  The first thing was to find a dressmaker so that she could have some suitable clothes to last out the winter.  The air was already starting to feel cool indicating that winter may be early.  Besides, she was hoping to stay for a while so that she could get to know Shade again.

 

Standing up, she went over to the mirror to make sure everything was good.  She probably missed breakfast but had heard that there was a good cafe that had a peculiar name, where she could get something to eat.  Once she made sure that the note to Shade was on its way, she would have to time to go there and explore the town as well.

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After making her way downstairs to the hotel lobby, Sarah went over to the front desk.  The clerk, who she had found was called Walter Simpson was busy with another guest.

 

When he had finished he turned to Sarah, "Good morning Mrs. Thornton-Carlton."

 

"Good morning," she said as she stepped closer to the desk, "Could you please tell me how I can go about getting a letter out to Lost Lake Ranch?"

 

Walter nodded, "Yes, Mr. Wentworth asked me to send you right in when you came down."

 

Sarah frowned a little, "Mr. Wentworth?"

 

"Yes...it seems that he has made some inquiries on your behalf."  Walter smiled, "Part of the service we give at the Belle.  If you ever wish me to help you on any matter just let me know."

 

"I will, " Sarah answered cautiously.  She wasn't quite enthralled by the way Mr. Simpson had subtlety hinted that he would also give to the same depth of service has Mr. Wentworth obviously had.

 

She asked Walter to let Mr. Wentworth know that she was there.  He came back about a minute later and told her that she could go in.

 

TBC

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As Sarah entered his office, Matt smiled.  She looked well-rested and was dressed very smartly.  He went over to her, "Mrs. Thornton-Carlton, it is nice to see you again.  I do hope that you have found everything to your liking.  At the Belle, we pride ourselves on giving our guests the best service we can."

 

Sarah answered his question saying that she was pleased with the service.  She then directed her attention to finding out the reason why he wanted to see her.

 

Matt admired her straightforwardness in wanting to get down to the purpose of his request to see her.  He offered her a seat, which she politely declined.  "Mr. Wentworth, I do appreciate your offer but I do have urgent business that I need to see to."

 

"Yes, I know and what I wanted to tell you that it has already been taken care off."  He paused to gauge her reaction before going on, "I was able to send a message out to Lost Lake on your behalf.  I know a couple of the ranch hands, and one happened to be in town yesterday getting the mail and some supplies.  I expect your cousin will be here either today or tomorrow."

 

TBC

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A frown appeared on Sarah's face.  She hadn't expected anyone to act on her behalf to contact Shade and she wasn't sure what to think of it.  Maybe it was part of the service the hotel gave but the owner should have had at least told her what he done and not spring it on her like this.  Here she was thinking she would have another day or two to prepare and now it could happen today.  The long-crafted letter she had in her hand now felt odd.

 

"i suppose I should thank for your help," she said solemnly, "So, I will say thank you but in the future, I would like to be advise of your intentions."

 

Matt sighed heavily, "You're right I should have told you and I did intend to but..."

 

"I know you were distracted by other things,"  By now she was getting a little bit vexed at what had occurred. "I hope you don't make a habit of interfering with all of your guests' personal business."

 

Before he answer, she held up her in a stopping motion, "It's not that I appreciate your help, it's more the fact that you did not ask me if you could.  I have never liked men making assumptions about me or for me."

 

Sarah turned to leave, "When my cousin arrives could you direct him to my room.  If I'm not there could you please ask him to wait. I will probably out shopping, so I won't be long gone."

 

With that, she walked out of the office.

 

@Stormwolfe (OOC: Ready to have Shade turn up :) )

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Shade walked out of the White Rose Inn and Cafe, pausing on the sidewalk for a moment. He had ridden in early after receiving a short missive informing him of his cousin's presence at the Belle-St. Regis. He honestly did not remember her too clearly, but he was concerned that she had shown up so soon after Chance's death. There had never been much in the way of contact between the various members of the Thornton family that he could recall. Of course, Shade had been gone for many years. Things could have changed during that time. He just hoped that Sarah Thornton-Carlton did not plan on trying to make trouble regarding his niece and nephew's inheritance.


While those thoughts meandered through his head, Shade continued walking along the boardwalk in the direction of Kalispell's hotel. It made a grand statement, but surprisingly, it was also doing very well. Shade guessed that even the frontier needed a touch of class and elegance from time to time.


After stepping through the doors of the Belle, Shade wondered if he looked as out of place as he felt. He removed his hat and brushed a hand through his dark hair as he walked to the front desk to ask for his cousin. He offered a smile for the man behind the desk, "I received a message that Mrs. Sarah Thornton-Carlton was a guest here. Can you get word to her that her cousin, Shade, is here to see her?"

 

@JulieS

Edited by Stormwolfe (see edit history)

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After receiving Shade's request, Walter Simpson made his way quickly upstairs and back again.  "She'll be down in just a moment."

 

A few minutes later, Sarah came down the stairs.  She went over to Walter who pointed out Shade to her.  As she approached her cousin, she could see a family resemblance, especially to her younger brother, Harvey.  When she reached him, she held out her hand, "Hello, Shade.  It's been a while."

 

@Stormwolfe

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Shade took the offered hand and gave it a brief, warm squeeze while he regarded the woman facing him. She was tall and very pretty with dark hair, dark eyes and engaging features. "Sarah, it has been awhile," he agreed, offering a brief lopsided smile. "Would you like to go somewhere for coffee? Sit here in the lobby and talk?" He did not say it aloud, but Shade wanted to find out why she had shown up in Kalispell out of the blue like this. Coming so soon after their legal troubles over custody of the twins, he could not help but be suspicious.

 

@JulieS

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"We can have coffee here," she said pointing in the direction of the dining room, "There's a lot I want to ask you about, so the sooner we get started the better as I know that you're a busy man."

 

After finding a table at the far of end of the room, they ordered their coffees.  As they waited, Sarah began, "You're probably why I came here.  Well, first of all, circumstances arose that, well, made it necessary for me to leave San Francisco.  My father requested that I come here first to find out what happen to Chance.  He and Chance had been corresponding for some years after the death of your father.  When he hadn't received a reply to his last letter, he was worried."

 

She paused, looking for the right words to say, "I found out on the stage trip here that Chance had died.  I knew I had to get in touch with you as soon as I could so I could find out the details before writing my to father. It was sad to hear about Chance's death.  You both made a great impression on me and my brothers when we came to visit all those years ago.  If you don't want to go into details about what happen, I will understand but I would like to know."

 

@Stormwolfe

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Shade tried hard to remember how he and Chance could have made much of an impression on Sarah when her family had visited. He had been no more than twelve or thirteen at the time, and Chance would have been five years older than that and preparing for college. Perhaps it had been a combination of things. The grandeur of the ranch as well as meeting her two older cousins. It was hard to say. Shade seemed to recall a skinny little girl following him and Chance around as they did their chores. He had made time to take her riding, much more than that was a blur. Shade felt bad about that.


"Look, Sarah, I don't mind tellin' you what I know, which isn't much," Shade finally answered. "You need to know that it's not very pleasant. How much do you really want to know?"

 

"I suppose as much as you can or want to tell me.  Anything that would help ease the mind of my father.  I know that he and Chance had built up some sort of friendship even though they hadn't seen each in other in years.  Father liked keeping in touch with the family here even though he has never had the chance to come back."

 

Sarah smiled reassuringly, "And in a way I would like to pay my respects as well."

 

"Well, we were told that Chance and Regina along with their two oldest children and one of the twins were ambushed by a rogue band of Indians on their way back from Missoula in June. Everyone except Cody, the youngest, was killed and their bodies burned beyond recognition along with their wagon," Shade schooled his voice to sound neutral and as matter-of-fact as possible given the subject matter. "Cody was later found by a passing stage and brought back to Kalispell. The remains were recovered by the Marshal's office, cremated, and the ashes interred at the family mausoleum on the ranch."

 

"To be honest, Sarah, there's some question about who actually killed them. However, taking care of the twins and their inheritance has overshadowed any investigation into the matter." Shade blew out a sharp breath and leaned back in his seat, dark blue eyes shadowed.

 

@JulieS

Edited by Stormwolfe (see edit history)

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"Thank you for telling me about what happened.  I know that it must have been hard for you, having gone through a loss of my own."

 

Sarah sighed.  There wasn't much else she could say in regards to the matter of Chance's death.  She wanted to help out as much as she could but didn't quite know how to go about it.  There's was no way she could invite herself to go to the ranch - that would have to come from Shade and that would probably depend upon how comfortable he was with having a long-lost cousin come over and stay for a short time.  The best she could was to offer help and let him know that he was welcome to get in touch with her if he wanted to.

 

"I wish I could do or say something that could be of a comfort or a help to you at this time.  I'm not even sure what you think of me but if you're ever in a mind to stop by the hotel and talk or have a meal, I would like that."

 

"The hotel?" Shade raised his eyebrow. If pressed, he would admit that he was wary of a long-lost relative showing up out of the blue. However, there was also and old saying, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. It was doubtful that Sarah or anyone in her family had designs on the twins' inheritance, but he could learn more about why she was in town if she was nearby. "The distance in from the ranch might not suit you, but you are welcome at the lodge. It would be good for the twins to get to know family."

 

Smiling, Sarah replied, "Yes, I would like that a lot.  I have to admit that the few days I have been here already, I have been at a loss since I don't know many people.  It will be nice to get to know you again and to meet Chance's children.  If there is anything you would like me to do just let me know."

 

She stood up, "I expect that you would like to leave soon."  She reached into her reticule and pulled out some money.  "If you need to hire or buy a buggy to carry my luggage, this should cover it.  I'll go and get my things and wait for in the lobby."

 

With that she left, feeling a bit relieved that she wouldn't be spending the next few days on her own.

 

Shade rose, intending to hand her the money back, but she had already whisked herself away. He pocketed the money with a wry smile. He could always give it back to her later since they kept a spare conveyance at the livery for just such occasions. Grabbing his hat, he jammed it on his head and headed out to get the trip to the ranch sorted.

 

~ FINIS ~

 

Edited by Stormwolfe (see edit history)

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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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Founders: Stormwolfe & Longshot

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