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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: Clara, Charlie
Location: Mainstreet boardwalk, Kalispell
When: Early July
Time of Day: Morning

 

 

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Clara had just emerged from the general store carrying a basket of goods she had purchased for the Lick Skillet.The basket was full but with nothing too heavy excepting the flour bag or too delicate, excepting the dozen eggs nestled on top, wouldn't want those to break. All necessities for baking though but she was used to this errand and had never dropped a basket before.

 

Married life was settling in for her, she felt. Some things had changed but others remained routine such as her job in the diner, which she still loved. Though Jacob had a farm background like her and originally she told him he should continue to be a farmer, she now had ambivalent feelings about farm life. She liked being in town maybe being a farmer's wife was not for her. 

 

But it was not all smooth. On occasion she would notice local ladies seeing her and then whispering among themselves. In fact one busybody actually stopped to tell her that she had been much too young to marry so early. And the woman had ended with a cryptic  "you don't fool anyone you know" before walking off nose in the air. Clara had been very unlike her natural self that time merely taking it silently and continuing on her way. It had taken all her self control not to snap back with some choice comments of her own. Still that would only have made it all worse.

 

And then, who should be coming toward her then on the same side of the boardwalk, but Charlie. Wait.....was he wearing a badge?  A lawman's badge? No, that couldn't be. Who in their right mind would hire a young man like Charlie for such a vital and , yes, dangerous job? 

 

There was no avoiding him now, not that she should have to avoid him anyhow. It was her life and she could live it like she wished. Guess same went for him too of course.

 

"Hello, Charlie."

 

@JulieS

 

 

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After a tour of the Marshall's office and the rest of the municipal buildings, one of the first things he had to do was get to know the lay of the town better.  Marshall Guyer had told him that he needed to know what was what and where was where, especially side streets and the alleys.  If there was a disturbance at a certain store he needed to know where it was and not waste precious time trying to find it.

 

So, it was on his first day as a deputy, he found himself walking down main street and smack dab right into Clara.  He couldn't avoid by crossing the street as she had probably seen him already and so he continued to make his way towards her.

 

"Hello, Charlie."

 

Charlie tipped his hat, "Ma'am."

 

Since she was now a married woman, he couldn't call her by her first name anymore, which made him sad.  Their relationship, for what it was, could never be the same again and the less time he spent her company the better.  In the month or so, since she hadn't gotten married, he had been slowly coming to terms with the fact that what he had felt for her was a one-way street.  Even if she felt something for him more than friendship, it didn't matter any longer.

 

However, as a deputy, he supposed he would have to make some sort of conversation with her, even if it was just to foster some goodwill.  "I hear that you're running the Lick Skillet in Mrs. Pike's absence.  I hope all is well there."

 

@Wayfarer

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Ma'am? Clara had not expected that! They had been on a first name basis even back on the ranch and at the dance too.

 

"I am still Clara," she pointed out softly.

 

At least he stopped and was not simply going to saunter on past her, that was something.

 

  "I hear that you're running the Lick Skillet in Mrs. Pike's absence.  I hope all is well there."

 

"Oh yes, I am but Eme....Mrs. Pike still is the owner. No one could replace her. But yes, things are going as well as could be expected," she nodded.

 

"I take it you know then that I am married now? To Jacob Lutz," she announced, it was a small town and news traveled fast plus it was indeed in the local newspaper.

 

Then she couldn't hold it in any longer, "Nice badge. Is that not a deputy's badge?"

 

@JulieS

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"I take it you know then that I am married now? To Jacob Lutz," she announced, it was a small town and news traveled fast plus it was indeed in the local newspaper.

 

"I know," Charlie answered solemnly and left it at that.

 

Then she couldn't hold it in any longer, "Nice badge. Is that not a deputy's badge?"

 

"Yes, it is.  In fact it's my first day today.  Marshall Guyer has decided to give me a chance and teach me what he knows," he paused for a moment to remember that Clara knew about his drinking problem.  "And before you ask, yes he does know about my vices.  About a month ago, I made a promise to myself and a few other people to give up drinking for good.  I don't intend to go back on this promise, not for you or anybody else."

 

@Wayfarer

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Well then, it wasn't just for show. It seemed the sheriff had went and hired on Charlie to be a deputy. Surprising to say the least. Guess he didn't like being a cowboy on the Lost Lake ranch?

 

"Well congratulations then, Charlie," Clara really did wish him well. And it wasn't the most safe of jobs.

 

"And before you ask, yes he does know about my vices.  About a month ago, I made a promise to myself and a few other people to give up drinking for good.  I don't intend to go back on this promise, not for you or anybody else."

 

Clara frowned, what was that supposed to mean?

 

"Excuse me? Go back on your promise for me? What do I have to do with either your drinking or your keeping your word? Surely you are not implying I was the cause of your ...vice?"

 

Why did he always do this? Say something to rile her up?

 

@JulieS

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Charlie frowned.  He hadn't meant to say that she was part of the problem.  Almost every time he saw Clara, he had a habit of blurting out what he was really thinking or feeling.  "Look I'm sorry if I implied that you're the cause of my vice.  My vice started long before I met you.  It's just that you...well it's just that you..."

 

He stopped not knowing what else to say.  However, a question came to the front of his mind that he now wanted to know the answer to.  "Why Lutz?"

 

@Wayfarer

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So there he was yet again, apologizing for something he said to her. That was all well and good, but it might help if he actually learned his lesson and didn't do it anymore. But he couldn't quite finish this one.

 

"My vice started long before I met you.  It's just that you...well it's just that you..."

 

"I what?" Clara prodded, he was apparently undermining his own apology with something new?

 

"Why Lutz?"

 

"Why as in why did I marry him?" Clara thought the question a mite too general but was still more than willing to answer.

 

"Because right from the very first time I met  Jacob he was the perfect gentleman, he was kind to me, he did not criticize, he had only compliments. And I knew it...from the start I just knew he was sincere, genuine. We just hit it off," she tried her best to explain but then some things weren't logical anyhow.

 

"Yes, we were undoubtedly impetuous but when he asked me to marry him, I did not have the slightest hesitation. I just knew. He was the one."

 

 

 

 

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Charlie slowly shook his head.  "To me, you were someone who deserved to be courted properly so that you would have time to get used to it.  I never thought that you were the type to jump straight into something without thinking long and hard about it. What you did was impetuous, and I hope that in years to come you won't regret it."

 

Feeling the need to clarify more, Charlie went on, "What I mean to say is that you're only sixteen. You've never really had the chance to do all the things you should have and now you never will.  Despite the arguments we always seem to get into, I really do care for you, Clara and I wanted to...well I just wanted to."

 

@Wayfarer

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Clara gave him the courtesy of hearing him out but that didn't mean she agreed with what he said.

 

"I already admitted I was impetuous but I do not agree with you that I did not think it out. Frankly you have no idea what I considered or did not consider," she countered.

 

"And the way you talked to me when we did converse those few times, I had absolutely no idea you had any ideas about courting me. Though once I met Jacob, it would not have mattered," she added.

 

He went on, "Despite the arguments we always seem to get into, I really do care for you, Clara and I wanted to...well I just wanted to."

 

"You know, Charlie, IF you really do care for me like you say you do, then you would wish me the best in my future and be happy for me that I have found someone I love. Just as I now am going to wish you the best of luck in your deputy job and hope and pray you stay safe because I do not wish anything bad happen to you."

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Charlie was now at a point of not knowing quite what to say.  The way she talked about Lutz made him sound like he was a knight in shining armour.  He wondered how Clara would handle it when the chinks started to show.  In the month or so since their wedding, he had heard a few stories about Jacob Lutz and most of them weren't very favourable.

 

Still, there was nothing he could do now and the last thing he wanted to do was to make out that he was happy about her union.  He sighed heavily, "I'm sorry Clara.  Maybe I should have made my intentions more clearer but I thought you were and are still too young.  To say that I am pleased about your marriage would be a lie."

 

He lowered his head slightly,  "The only thing I can offer you is that I hope that your husband will do his best when the future comes and that you won't suffer if he doesn't."

 

@Wayfarer

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"I'm sorry Clara.  Maybe I should have made my intentions more clearer but I thought you were and are still too young.  To say that I am pleased about your marriage would be a lie."

 

Clara frowned but that soon turned into a glare. And after she had just told him she wished for the very best for his new law career.

 

"The only thing I can offer you is that I hope that your husband will do his best when the future comes and that you won't suffer if he doesn't."

 

She was not going to stand here and be hurt like this. Oh, she wanted to say more but what good would it do and what difference would it make? None.

 

"We are done here. I will never make the same mistake again of trying to talk to you. We have nothing further to say. Good day to you, Deputy," she said thru gritted teeth then stepped to one side of him and kept on walking.

 

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Charlie frowned and then shook his head slightly as Clara walked off.  Part of him regretted not being more tactful but a part of him wasn't sorry.  It was best that they parted the way they did.  Anything more friendlier and that might have given him cause to hope that if anything happened to her husband, he would have a chance.  A chance was the last thing he wanted now that she was another man's wife.

 

From now on, whenever he encountered her it would be in his official capacity as deputy and she would be treated the same as any other married woman in the community.  However, deep down he knew that if she ever got into trouble, he would be the first to rush to her side and from what he knew of Jacob Lutz, that was a distinct possibility.  Considering how young both of them were, they had a lot of growing up to do.

 

A small smile appeared on Charlie's face.  Maybe sometime in the future, he and Clara could be friends again, when he could look at her without feeling that he missed out on something.  In the meantime, he had a lot of growing up to do himself.  With that thought in mind, he continued his rounds of the town.

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ooc: End thread?   As usual it ends badly between them 😋

 

Edit: Yep...a good or is a bad place to end ;)

 

 

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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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