Jump to content

Announcements

  • Recently Browsing

    No registered users viewing this page.


  • Recently Used Characters

  • Posts

    • "It's just to your right.  Would you like some help?"  There!  An offer, but Frances' choice.   Miss Grimes flicked her stick to the right and struck the package, bending down to retrieve it. "Oh, thank you, Mrs Pike, I have it." she smiled picking up the package and feeling it over for tears. "I hope none of it is peeping out, it is some undergarments and an old dress that needed repairs. I can sew but it's a laborious process for me, and we will be on our way to Kalispell tomorrow."   She managed to bundle up everything in one arm, packages, stick, and stuck out the other to somewhere near Emeline again.   "Goodbye, I hope to see you in Kalispell when you return" she did not shy away from using the 'S' word "And I shall certainly look up Mrs Connolly at the Diner."   @Bongo 
    • "Oh..."  Emeline gasped as the girl dropped her package, and started to bend down to get it, but then hesitated, wondering if perhaps she even wanted help, or might feel insulted at the offer, that it would imply that she couldn't do for herself.   "It's just to your right.  Would you like some help?"  There!  An offer, but Frances' choice.   @Javia        
    • He took Frances' hand and gently shook it, "It's a pleasure to meet you, Miss Grimes."   "And you, Mr. Simons." she smiled sweetly.   "If you are interested in joining the ladies group my aunt Rebecca Wentworth will be running, I can get her to send you an invitation or she can personally come to see you."   "Oh, that sounds wonderful, I shall have to see if, er..." stammered the blind girl, and Crabbe could guess why.    "And it doesn't cost anything to join, does it, Ben?" Lorenzo put in.   "It sounds absolutely wonderful Mr. Simons" said Frances, now much more firmly "Please, just an invitation, I mean, just knowing when and when your Aunt would be holding the meetings would be all I need. I shall find it with no problem. What a kind thought, thank you, Mr. Simons."   At the sound of Ben munching, she decided that she had probably outstayed her welcome at his tableside and said "I shall leave you to your repast, Mr Simons, thank you again."   @JulieS    
    • "First off, proper grammar, it is 'like a blind person' not people," Clara pointed out , "And secondly we are here in this kitchen to cook proper meals for paying customers. That is a responsibility I take most seriously. Kindly be more....adult."   "Ain't it funny, Clara, I'm always makin' mistakes like that when I talk in my regular voice, but when I do 'personations of folk, I can speak right if I needs to. Listen to this:..." the gangly, scruffy teenager suddenly stood up ramrod straight at the frying pan and repositioned the spachelor in her hand like she was holding a dainty quill, then started to speak in a refined, maybe even pretentious voice, very unlike her own, with no trace of a southern accent:   "Arabella, would you please desist from precipitating those most distastful and less that utilitarian anecdotal confabulations. I find them most distressing!" All right, the words might not make sense, but anyone who knew Clara would have recognised the rhythm and tone of her voice.   @Wayfarer
    • "There ain't no 'we', Ara, this is between me n' the cowpoke here. You did not knock and I did not say you could come in," Caroline now pointed out as calmly as she could.   "I know..." replied Arabella sadly "An' I know I promised to do all them things but..." she shook her head a little "when I heard all them terrible horrible rotten things what happened to you, I was just so shocked and sad and angry that some low down bastard could do that to my sweet, pretty, lovely little Caroline, I just... well my soul kinda flew out to you, and my big ol' feet foller'd right along behind it."   She reached across and hugged her again and kissed her on top of her head again. Brendan then put in his two cents' worth.   From there, he looked down at Caroline. "Hey. What I was tryin' to say...goin' to say...is that...I understand."   "Good ta know, hon. Just wait a minute and we can continue this conversation once Ara leaves the room, shuts the door, and assures me she won't be listening in anymore. Got that?" Caroline eyed the teenager.   Arabella nodded compliantly enough, but then twisted in the bed so she was face to face with Brendan, whom she stared straight in the eye.   "But before I go, Brendan Connolly, you gotta tell me that you forgive me for all them silly things I said before and all them silly things I did cause even Caroline's forgiven me and she's the one I did and said them things to and we gettin' on all right now and I found out some stuff which made me change and I'm a better person now and it just ain't fair that you're still treatin' me so mean and, and..." she gulped down a sob and a lone tear appeared in the corner of her eye.   "... I really want you to be my friend again..." she wiped away the tear "... please."   @Bailey @Wayfarer
Richard Orr

The Long Awaited Town Council Meeting 2

Recommended Posts

Two Days Later (not to interfere with the current plot)

The paper was out, and had been for a couple of days. The Governor and most of his party had left town, except for the two Territorial Marshals. No rocks had been thrown through his font window, so Phinn made his way to the Post Office to interview one Richard Orr, Postmaster and one time lawyer, about what has transpired at the meeting from the mans point of view.

 

Yes, Phinn had scalded him in the last edition, now it was time to allow the man equal time to rebut what had been printed. He thought that if he could allow a retraction for the ever annoying Arabella Mudd, he could certainly grant Orr an interview.

 

He stepped into the post office, closing the door behind him. At the counter was Assistant Postmaster Nolan Ashworth. "Ah, Mister Ashworth,  could I trouble you to ask Mister Orr if he might have a few minutes for an interview?"

 

Ashworth studied McVay a long moment. "Of course, I be right back." And he took the required two steps, knocked on the door, stepped inside and repeated the request.

large.433456171_NolanAshworth.jpg.27a0d0f12280663e7b905af017724fad.jpg

@Javia

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post

Ashworth let Orr know that McVay was here, asking for an interview. Orr was not alone, he was deep in conversation with two men: one of them smartly dressed, the other somewhat scruffy. Still, he indicated that his Assistant, who actually ran the Office on a day to day basis, should show the scribbler in. The two other men left as McVay entered. One, Lorenzo Crabbe, greeted him in his usual smarmy way as he left, with a nod of his head and a "Mr. McVay" as he passed through the doorway. The other, the scruffy one, was a lounger called Grimes: known about town for nothing good. He merely gave the reporter a look of amused disrespect as they passed.

 

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ3D_Tbs2tGMeQ_ryWIS-f4562-20819.jpg

 

"McVay, come in!" hailed Orr, sitting back in his round-backed Captain's chair. He was in full, jolly, hail-fellow-well-met mode. "Take a seat!" he boomed, as he opened a smart looking cigar box and turned it toward the entering editor. He was already puffing on one himself.

 

"Whiskey?" he asked. He had a decanter and clean glasses on his desk along with the two used ones from Crabbe and Grimes' visit.

 

"You know, I've got a bone to pick with you Mr VcVay." he announced, puffing away at his stogie.

 

@Flip

 

Share this post


Link to post

"McVay gave Crabbe an odd look of disdain at the man's greeting, and the fact it was well known fact that Crabbe was a charlatan, though seldom spoken of in that context.

 

"McVay, come in!" hailed Orr, sitting back in his round-backed Captain's chair. He was in full, jolly, hail-fellow-well-met mode. "Take a seat!" he boomed, as he opened a smart looking cigar box and turned it toward the entering editor. He was already puffing on one himself.

 

"Don't mind if I do, thank you Dick."  Phinn acknowledged, taking on of the offered cigars an fishing out a match to light it with several puffs to get it going good.

 

"Whiskey?" he asked. He had a decanter and clean glasses on his desk along with the two used ones from Crabbe and Grimes' visit.

 

Phinn simply nodded that he would as he blew out the smoke.

 

"You know, I've got a bone to pick with you Mr VcVay." he announced, puffing away at his stogie.

 

"Yes Dick, I imagine you do. And, I'm here to hear your views on the hospital project, all this talk of a hospital commission that had not been mentioned before." He began, "Seems to me that perhaps you're not actually in favor of something that the town council doesn't control, but, I want to hear your side to all of this. As for publishing what you have to say? let me be frank, though the community at large has a right to know what's going on in the name of their town, it could be too explosive to print, that is, if you are forthright in what you have to say." He smiled. "Perhaps some could reach my readers, and some not. As i said, it all depends." there was a pause.

 

And you know dick, bullshit is just that, bullshit."

@Javia

  • Like 1
  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Orr's welcome was cordial enough, and the veteran reporter accepted his hospitality politely. 

 

"You know, I've got a bone to pick with you Mr VcVay." he announced, puffing away at his stogie.

 

"Yes Dick, I imagine you do. And, I'm here to hear your views on the hospital project, all this talk of a hospital commission that had not been mentioned before." He began.

 

Orr's laugh boomed out like a Mephistophelian Santa Claus. "Oh, that little matter!" he reached for the newspaper on his desk. "Yes, I read all about it in your paper. 'Town Council Loses!' Catchy headline, but the rest of the article... seems a little biased against me!" 

 

"Seems to me that perhaps you're not actually in favor of something that the town council doesn't control, but, I want to hear your side to all of this. As for publishing what you have to say? let me be frank, though the community at large has a right to know what's going on in the name of their town, it could be too explosive to print, that is, if you are forthright in what you have to say." He smiled. "Perhaps some could reach my readers, and some not. As I said, it all depends." there was a pause.

"And you know dick, bullshit is just that, bullshit."

 

The big bearded man listened to McVay with the attentive but relaxed air of a man at peace with the world, puffing appreciatively at his cigar, occasionally blowing a smoke ring that wobbled through the air before evaporating into nothingness.

 

"Well, Phinn..."  he looked almost quizzically at the ceiling as he leaned back in his chair "You can put me down as 'No Comment'." he nodded to himself "Even your compositor should be able to manage that without too many typographical errors."

 

He dropped back forward in his chair so he was facing McVay full in the face. He pointed his cigar at him in a rather accusatory way. "You know, you have rather upset my daughter, Mr McVay. You failed to mention in your report her rather pathetic little tableaux and her silly little poem in favor of the hospital and my order to have her arrested. Why, she even accused me of bribing you not to write about it in your piece! Can you imagine that?!"

 

"You don't have daughters, do you, McVay?" he asked rhetorically, standing and starting to pace the room, puffing on his cigar "They're the damnedest creatures to deal with: one minute they're Daddy's little girl, want to be just like you; then they go through this rebellious stage: seem to want to attack you, hurt you, work against you. But you always know that in their heart of hearts, they're just wanting your attention, your approval, and that one day, they will be back on your side. The part in between is the Dickens to deal with though." he ruminated, talking about Anaesthesia.

 

Or was he, perhaps, talking about Leah Steelgrave? 

 

@Flip

Edited by Javia (see edit history)
  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

The big bearded man listened to McVay with the attentive but relaxed air of a man at peace with the world, puffing appreciatively at his cigar, occasionally blowing a smoke ring that wobbled through the air before evaporating into nothingness.

 

"Well, Phinn..."  he looked almost quizzically at the ceiling as he leaned back in his chair "You can put me down as 'No Comment'." he nodded to himself "Even your compositor should be able to manage that without too many typographical errors."

 

Phin smiled at the snide remark. "Yes sir i'm sure of that. And you flattery will of course, only get you so far. I came to get your side in all of this."

 

He dropped back forward in his chair so he was facing McVay full in the face. He pointed his cigar at him in a rather accusatory way. "You know, you have rather upset my daughter, Mr McVay. You failed to mention in your report her rather pathetic little tableaux and her silly little poem in favor of the hospital and my order to have her arrested. Why, she even accused me of bribing you not to write about it in your piece! Can you imagine that?!"


"Well Dick," Phinn began, "none of that actually concerned the issue at hand, which was the approval of the project Miss Steelgrave has presented over the past months." Before he could continue, Orr cut him off.

 

"You don't have daughters, do you, McVay?" he asked rhetorically, standing and starting to pace the room, puffing on his cigar "They're the damnedest creatures to deal with: one minute they're Daddy's little girl, want to be just like you; then they go through this rebellious stage: seem to want to attack you, hurt you, work against you. But you always know that in their heart of hearts, they're just wanting your attention, your approval, and that one day, they will be back on your side. The part in between is the Dickens to deal with though." he ruminated, talking about Anaesthesia.

 

Phinn's brow wrinkled as Orr went on shaming his daughters presentation before the Town Council.

 

Or was he, perhaps, talking about Leah Steelgrave? 

 

"No Dick, I have never married, and my dalliances have not produced any progeny that I am aware of, either male or female. And are you aiming your little tale at Miss Steelgrave? Suggesting that she is merely being rebellious at her age, like some adolescent when she is a full grown woman? And yes, your daughter present a fine living picture and he poem, lovely. But not a part of what I witnessed from the rostrum. Not at all." He shook his head.

 

"Really Dick, your demand that she be arrested need not find it's way in print, by now the whole town knows what few actually witnessed. There is of course the matter of the property that should be allotted for the hospital and orphanage in exchange for the right of ways which will benefit the town in the near future. How will that proceed without Mayor Scott Cory, should he remain unavailable?"

@Javia

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post

"No Dick, I have never married, and my dalliances have not produced any progeny that I am aware of, either male or female. And are you aiming your little tale at Miss Steelgrave? Suggesting that she is merely being rebellious at her age, like some adolescent when she is a full grown woman? And yes, your daughter present a fine living picture and he poem, lovely. But not a part of what I witnessed from the rostrum. Not at all." He shook his head.

 

"Miss Steelgrave?" Dick Orr chuckled "The thought never entered my head. You seem to be obsessed with her!" he said shaking his head. "Of course, I don't particularly want my daughter's near incarceration to be in your paper, but my she herself is very keen on the idea. These young females, you see, they crave the drama!"

 

"Really Dick, your demand that she be arrested need not find it's way in print, by now the whole town knows what few actually witnessed. There is of course the matter of the property that should be allotted for the hospital and orphanage in exchange for the right of ways which will benefit the town in the near future. How will that proceed without Mayor Scott Cory, should he remain unavailable?"

 

Orr continued pacing and puffing, puffing and pasting. Eventually he stopped and looked down a the still seated McVay. "You're keen as mustard on all this aren't you, McVay? Listen, can I tell you something off the record? Something that might put your mind at rest about Miss Steelgrave and her precious hospital?!" he said. 

 

"You need to swear to me on something sacred: I need you to promise me you won't print a word to this as a fellow former member of the Army of Northern Virginia!"

 

@Flip

Edited by Javia (see edit history)
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post

Phinn had been denying his marriage since h3r passing in '72. People, no matter how well meaning, continue to bring back the pain of the loss. So, as was his custom, he said nothing in regard to his late wife.

 

Orr continued pacing and puffing, puffing and pasting. Eventually he stopped and looked down a the still seated McVay. "You're keen as mustard on all this aren't you, McVay? Listen, can I tell you something off the record? Something that might put your mind at rest about Miss Steelgrave and her precious hospital?!" he said

 

McVay looked at him a bit taken by this offer of divulging a secret regarding whole matter of the hospital. They say, 'curiosity killed the cat,' only to be followed by 'satisfaction brought him back.' This, was that moment. But something suggested he be wary of whatever he was going to learn.

 

"You need to swear to me on something sacred: I need you to promise me you won't print a word to this as a fellow former member of the Army of Northern Virginia!"

 

"Of course Dick, on my oath to Nathan Bedford Forrest, the soldier, his recent politic leaves much to be desired. But you have my word." He promised

Share this post


Link to post

"You need to swear to me on something sacred: I need you to promise me you won't print a word to this as a fellow former member of the Army of Northern Virginia!"

 

"Of course Dick, on my oath to Nathan Bedford Forrest, the soldier, his recent politic leaves much to be desired. But you have my word." He promised.

 

Orr took this rhetoric with a pinch of salt: sure, Forrest the post-war politician had been instrumental in setting up the Ku Klux Klan; but Forrest the Soldier, the Wizard of the Saddle, had committed acts of atrocity against unarmed prisoners of war: especially negro troops and Southern Loyalists at Fort Pillow. Ironically, Forrest was these days advocating for black rights! Dick wasn't sure if that was what McVay was referring to or his previous conduct in the 60s. 

 

Either way, an old soldier swearing on his commander's name was about the most cast iron promise any man could make.

 

"All right" Orr nodded "Number One: I've never actually been against the hospital, it's just been materially useful to me to prevaricate until now. Now it is going ahead, I'm putting everything behind building it."

 

"Number Two: Corey's days are numbered and I'm going to stand for Mayor come the Fall, or before if necessary." The implication was that Corey might not make it until his term of office was up.

 

"Number Three: And I'd value your opinion on this... I'm considering starting a rival newspaper to your own. Well, what do you think of that?!" he asked, his eyes twinkling.

 

@Flip

Edited by Javia (see edit history)
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post

Either way, an old soldier swearing on his commander's name was about the most cast iron promise any man could make.

 

"All right" Orr nodded "Number One: I've never actually been against the hospital, it's just been materially useful to me to prevaricate until now. Now it is going ahead, I'm putting everything behind building it."

 

"You've hood winked most in this town then, Dick. There's not a person to believe otherwise. Most believe that you are against the hospital and, would do whatever it took to rest control of it away from Miss Steelgrave. But do continue, please."

 

"Number Two: Corey's days are numbered and I'm going to stand for Mayor come the Fall, or before if necessary." The implication was that Corey might not make it until his term of office was up.

 

"Most everyone believes that its the position you've been after for a while now. You have some information on the condition of Mayor Corey to suggest he's too ill to continue? Is that what you're saying Dick?"

 

"Number Three: And I'd value your opinion on this... I'm considering starting a rival newspaper to you own. Well, what do you think of that?!" he asked, his eyes twinkling.

 

"Hell, this burgh is hardly big enough for the one paper. I"d like the competition if there was a good reason for it, which I find hard to believe. But you go ahead, Dick, start your paper. Most folks I believe will see it for what it is, an outlet for your version of what is going on, not the news. Controlling what people read, what they know, and a heavy dose of what to think isn't healthy, but sure Dick, you start your paper. I'll not say a word." Phin responded. Controlling the news was as old as politics itself. He smiled, "Tho you still haven't said anything that would put anyone's mind at ease about the hospital project 

Edited by Flip (see edit history)
  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Orr had shrugged off McVay's comments about his first two points, they were done deeds as far as he was concerned, but the third project, still in its early planning stages was clearly the one that excited him and brought him back to his chair, where he sat facing McVay and talking excitedly between puffs of his cigar.

 

"Hell, this burgh is hardly big enough for the one paper."

 

"Yet." interjected Orr, but otherwise let McVay ramble on.

 

"I"d like the competition if there was a good reason for it, which I find hard to believe. But you go ahead, Dick, start your paper. Most folks I believe will see it for what it is, an outlet for your version of what is going on, not the news. Controlling what people read, what they know, and a heavy dose of what to think isn't healthy, but sure Dick, you start your paper. I'll not say a word." Phin responded. Controlling the news was as old as politics itself."

 

Again, Orr had to chuckle to himself at McVay's hypocrisy, as if the Union didn't express its editor's 'version of what is going on' - but no matter. Orr wanted to talk hard business.

 

"Well, it's not so much a matter of me starting a second newspaper, I was thinking more along the lines of us starting a second newspaper." He immediately waved his hands "Don't say 'no' right away, Phinn!" he implored "Go away and think about it: two newspapers with different editorial teams, using the same printshop and news-sources, co-operating to produce two completely different rags: oh, sure, you can keep the Union as it is, it's your paper, it expresses your view of things and your politics: its rival will express the polar opposite, whatever that may be. Between them, both papers will manage to 'scratch the itch' of all of Kalispell's potential readers. And where the Union is a bastion of scrupulous truthfulness and moral integrity, its little sister will, shall we say, not be adverse to stooping to the methods of the yellow press of the coastal cities."

 

He smiled, "Tho you still haven't said anything that would put anyone's mind at ease about the hospital project."

 

"Oh that again!" Orr yawned, and opened a desk draw, from which he drew some plans - the ones supplied to the Council many moons ago. But these had been altered, scribbled upon in pencil and ruled lines, calculations dotted the map.

 

"Here" he thrust the architectural drawings toward Phinn. "I had a architect look them over as soon as the Steelgrave girl submitted them "I then put in a tender to the Council to supply the building materials should the project go ahead... oh, it was about the time of the Whitefish crisis. Believe me Phinn, times like that, you can push just about anything through at the beginning of a meeting." he told the newspaperman, candidly. "I stand to make a good deal of money on the construction of the Hospital. That should be enough to convince you that I'm serious about pushing ahead with all possible speed."

 

@Flip

 

Edited by Flip (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post

He smiled, "Tho you still haven't said anything that would put anyone's mind at ease about the hospital project."

 

"Oh that again!" Orr yawned, and opened a desk draw, from which he drew some plans - the ones supplied to the Council many moons ago. But these had been altered, scribbled upon in pencil and ruled lines, calculations dotted the map.

 

"Yes Dick, that again."

 

"Here" he thrust the architectural drawings toward Phinn. "I had a architect look them over as soon as the Steelgrave girl submitted them "I then put in a tender to the Council to supply the building materials should the project go ahead... oh, it was about the time of the Whitefish crisis. Believe me Phinn, times like that, you can push just about anything through at the beginning of a meeting." he told the newspaperman, candidly. "I stand to make a good deal of money on the construction of the Hospital. That should be enough to convince you that I'm serious about pushing ahead with all possible speed."

 

""So I gather all that was required was for Miss Steelgrave to submit her plans, you hijack them, make a couple changes, and claim them for yourself. And therein lies your problem Dick, Leah Steelgrave has the men, building materials, and supplies waiting for the word to start. Or, had you missed that part. There is no profit to be made, which I realize goes against the grain with you." Phinn began. "All that was, is, or ever will be requested of the Town Council  was the trade for the land. The simple swap of parcels that get a hospital built at no cost to Kalispell or it's citizens."

 

He shook his head, "So I am bound not to talk about this plan of yours. Your plan to bankrupt the town for your profit. You should get together with her father, maybe learn a thing or two from him because you damn sure have nothing to teach. You are simply a charlatan, sir. Willing to kill a community off with a cheaply built, third rate structure that will likely not last out the winter! You are a sham, sir, a pitiful excuse for a human being." He got to his feet and tossed the cigar onto the plans where the ash fell off and the burning end of it began to smoulder before bursting into flames.

Edited by Flip (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post

""So I gather all that was required was for Miss Steelgrave to submit her plans, you hijack them, make a couple changes, and claim them for yourself. And therein lies your problem Dick, Leah Steelgrave has the men, building materials, and supplies waiting for the word to start. Or, had you missed that part. There is no profit to be made, which I realize goes against the grain with you." Phinn began. "All that was, is, or ever will be requested of the Town Council  was the trade for the land. The simple swap of parcels that get a hospital built at no cost to Kalispell or it's citizens."

 

"Curses!" bellowed the tall bearded crooked official: once again the gallant, intelligent and beautiful Miss Steelgrave and her many powerful friends had outfoxed him!

 

He shook his head, "So I am bound not to talk about this plan of yours. Your plan to bankrupt the town for your profit. You should get together with her father, maybe learn a thing or two from him because you damn sure have nothing to teach. You are simply a charlatan, sir. Willing to kill a community off with a cheaply built, third rate structure that will likely not last out the winter! You are a sham, sir, a pitiful excuse for a human being." He got to his feet and tossed the cigar onto the plans where the ash fell off and the burning end of it began to smoulder before bursting into flames.

 

"No! My plans!!" yelled the outsmarted Orr and grabbed for the container of water used to mix with the whiskey: unfortunately for him, in the excitement he reached for the decanter of powerful cask strength whiskey and threw that on the increasing conflagration on his desk instead. Realising his horrible mistake, as the flames increased instead of dampened, he pulled back the decanter, depositing a good deal of the flammable liquid onto his sleeve. 

 

Maybe it was that, or the expensive and powerful cologne his wife had sprayed him with that morning, but as he tried to put out the flames fast engulfing the myriad papers on his desk, the flames caught and streaked up his sleeve. "ARRRGGHHH!!!" he yelled as his stumbled back, his clothes quickly catching light and sending an oil lamp on the desk tumbling, adding its fuel to the quickly spreading conflagration. 

 

As Orr flapped about trying to douse the flames about his person, he crashed into a tall bookcase near the window. There was now a horrible smell of burning human hair in the office, as well as smoke, as the flames reached his magnificent beard and oiled moustache, the flailing human torch grasped onto the bookcase in his agony and it toppled over on top of him: scads of books and documents falling off adding yet more kindling to the fire further whilst also crushing the screaming form of Richard Orr beneath it. Black smoke was now coming from the fire and forming a dense pall in the upper reaches of the high office, each second becoming more and more intense and lower in its choking reach.

 

@Flip

Edited by Javia (see edit history)
  • Wow! 1

Share this post


Link to post

"No! My plans!!" yelled the outsmarted Orr and grabbed for the container of water used to mix with the whiskey: unfortunately for him, in the excitement he reached for the decanter of powerful cask strength whiskey and threw that on the increasing conflagration on his desk instead. Realising his horrible mistake, as the flames increased instead of dampened, he pulled back the decanter, depositing a good deal of the flammable liquid onto his sleeve. 

 

This had not been Phinn's idea to destroy the place, perhaps singe the plans, maybe even burn them, but this comedy of Orr's errors was turning the office into an inferno! Threatening the destruction of the entire building. He heard someone yelling "fire," soon the bucket brigade would spring into action and hopefully minimize the damage to just this one office.

 

Maybe it was that, or the expensive and powerful cologne his wife had sprayed him with that morning, but as he tried to put out the flames fast engulfing the myriad papers on his desk, the flames caught and streaked up his sleeve. "ARRRGGHHH!!!" he yelled as his stumbled back, his clothes quickly catching light and sending an oil lamp on the desk tumbling, adding its fuel to the quickly spreading conflagration. 

 

"Gawddamnit Orr, stand still!" Phinn screamed at the man, trying his best to get to him.

 

As Orr flapped about trying to douse the flames about his person, he crashed into a tall bookcase near the window. There was now a horrible smell of burning human hair in the office, as well as smoke, as the flames reached his magnificent beard and oiled moustache, the flailing human torch grasped onto the bookcase in his agony and it toppled over on top of him: scads of books and documents falling off adding yet more kindling to the fire further whilst also crushing the screaming form of Richard Orr beneath it. Black smoke was now coming from the fire and forming a dense pall in the upper reaches of the high office, each second becoming more and more intense and lower in its choking reach.

 

Phinn raced to him as fast he he could move through the flames. The bookcase would be unmovable filled with it's volumes, but empty  he grabbed a corner and jerked the case free of Orr, tossing it away from both of them and then hoisted the man on his shoulders and made a dash outside, as the people were responding to the call and forming the line necessary as the water started coming. Speed and Charley shouting encouragement, as they worked their way into the building and actually stepping inside as the first bucket reached them and the fight to save the courthouse was on.

 

Phinn got Orr away from the structure shouting for someone, anyone, to get Doc  Danforth.The the newspaper man raced back inside to check for anyone else who hadn't escape, but there was no one unaccounted for. He walked back out side to wait with the battered and singed Richard Orr, feeling sick about what had happened. Orr lay in the shade of the overhang waiting for the Doctor.

@Bongo@Wayfarer@ANY!

Edited by Flip (see edit history)
  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Graphic warning...

 

The call of 'Fire!' brought most everyone in to the alarm, after all, even a small fire could easily get out of control and be devastating to the town faster than one might imagine.  As he didn't have any patients at the time, Jonah dashed to the scene with the mass of townsfolk, tossing his jacket over a hitching rail before falling in line in the bucket brigade that had already formed. 

 

The building...city offices, was coughing flame, and black smoke billowed toward the sky, casting a shadowy pall over the street, but with persistence, they'd get a handle on it.

 

Then he noticed McVay dragging something outside and under a tree, and it even took the doctor a moment to realize that it was a human.  It was his duty, but he wasn't looking forward to it as he fell out of the brigade line and ran over to the news-man.

 

"Who is it?" he asked, kneeling beside the still-smoldering form, trying to block the acrid stench of burned flesh that he knew would linger in his nostrils for days.  It was impossible to tell, the flesh that wasn't blackened was...and the clothing that hadn't been completely incinerated had become one with the flesh and muscle it had once protected.  As for checking a pulse, there just wasn't a place anywhere he could do that, although it wasn't really necessary...the injury was too devastating to survive...

 

Except...

 

Where lips once formed words, below a gaping hole that had been a nose, small, bloody bubbles percolated slowly, showing that there was still breath, and breath meant heartbeat...

 

Cringing, Jonah looked up at McVay and shook his head.  It was just a matter of waiting a few moments, and the bubbles would stop...

 

@Flip; @Javia. @Wayfarer; anyone else

  • Wow! 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post

It was too late. The bubbles were merely air expelling out of the dead lungs. Richard Orr was elsewhere, examining the padlock on the Pearly Gates.

 

One of the men in the bucket line, and who was getting kinda tired of the work, to be honest, ran over to join the Doctor, the Newspaperman and the charred form on the ground.

 

"It's Dick Orr!" he yelped "Shit, I was with him but ten minutes ago!! I recognise his boots." Frank Grimes cried. He had come back after parting ways with Lorenzo Crabbe and seen the fracas breaking out.

 

"It was him, HIM!" he pointed a finger at Phineas. "It was him run in and tried to rescue the poor bastard. Jesus Christ, McVay, you're a God damn hero!" Soon people were murmuring, not just about the startling demise of the town's Postmaster, but also about the thrilling deeds of the local newspaper editor, running into a burning building to rescue the man he had so recently castigated in the pages of his editorials.

 

More people were arriving, coming out of stores and their homes on hearing the shouts and hullabaloo. On hearing what had happened, both Mrs Orr and Mrs Wigfall had fainted right there in the street and had to be carried to their homes to have the smelling salts presented to their noses.

 

Hector Wigfall had gone to attend to his mother, but his sister Jemima pushed through the crowd and stared down at the blackened body with a look of odd satisfaction on her usually placid face and was heard to give a dismissive sniff and then mutter "Huh! Well, guess that's him dead."

 

The next figure to push through, though, was a different kettle of fish:  Anæsthesia Orr threw herself bodily onto her father's charred remains, covering her fashionably tight white dress in blood and charred skin fragments before looking up and holding out an imprecating hand to Jonah.

 

"Oh Doctor Danforth! You must save him! Please!! Oh, poor father! We had quarrelled so! He cannot go like this!!" she wailed, tears streaming down her sooty face, making interesting white rivulets through the black grime. 

 

@ Anybody

Edited by Javia (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post

"Who is it?" he asked, kneeling beside the still-smoldering form, trying to block the acrid stench of burned flesh that he knew would linger in his nostrils for days.  It was impossible to tell, the flesh that wasn't blackened was...and the clothing that hadn't been completely incinerated had become one with the flesh and muscle it had once protected.  As for checking a pulse, there just wasn't a place anywhere he could do that, although it wasn't really necessary...the injury was too devastating to survive...

 

Except...

 

Where lips once formed words, below a gaping hole that had been a nose, small, bloody bubbles percolated slowly, showing that there was still breath, and breath meant heartbeat...

 

Cringing, Jonah looked up at McVay and shook his head.  It was just a matter of waiting a few moments, and the bubbles would stop...

 

"Dick Orr." McVay said quietly. "Damned fool! A tragic, tragic, comedy of errors, everything the man touched burst into flames, or made the fire worse. It started with the flame from a cigar ignited some plans on his desk, he panicked and reached for water but got his whiskey decanter by mistake. I'm yelling at him to hold still as he lights one thing after another, including himself, finally, the bookshelf falls on him, I get it off and haul him out here. I'll never forget the screaming, not ever." He plopped down, head hanging.

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Jonah nodded as Phineas told him that it was Dick Orr.  The only other being that could have been better, Jonah thought, was Elias Steelgrave, but he quickly shoved that uncharitable thought aside.

 

"Poor soul," he murmured, for burning to death surely had to be one of the worst ways to go.  At least, for what it was worth, the man had likely sucked fire into his lungs, quickly ending any conscious thought. 

 

Then his daughter rushed over in a flurry of stunned grief, begging him to do something, and he could only shake his head.  "I'm sorry, child, there's nothing to do."

 

Looking at the men around, he commented, "We need to cover him."  As horrible a person Orr may have been, there was no need to have his mortal remains on display for all to see.  And he silently thanked himself for taking off his coat earlier!

 

@Flip; @Wayfarer; @Javia; @JulieS

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Hector Wigfall reappeared with a blanket and informed his sister that their mother was recovering on the couch and that she should come home and look after her. Jemima merely shook her head, snatched the blanket and pointed to the hysterical Anæsthesia. Hector took the hint and led the sobbing, blood besmirched girl away with his arm around her... for support.

 

"Here you are Doctor Danforth." Jemima cooed in as tender a voice as she could muster, as she handed him the blanket, her calloused, wash-day-red hand accidentally brushing against the soft skin of his as she did so. She looked deeply into his dreamy brown eyes. She'd been getting some tips on talking to fellers from Arabella, of all people, and she'd said 'try and find something you've both got in common to talk about!' She tried to think of something.

 

"Oh, doctor." she said, her hand gripping his as she did so "I forgot to tell you, my cyst's healed up beautiful since you drained it. Do you think I should call round sometime, so you can double check it?" she asked, trying to execute a shy smile that looked more like a grimace of pain.

 

Sure, trying to pitch woo to the handsome doctor over a charred corpse wasn't ideal, but it was the first chance she had gotten to be near to him since he had caressed her bare back with his surprisingly warm hands over a month ago, and she wasn't about to waste it.

 

@ Anybody but especially @Bongo

Edited by Javia (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post

Once the bucket brigade had don the job, beating the flames down and saving the Municiple Center, Speed came out of the room into the hall thanking people for their efforts as he made his way to the street. Ever thankful that the flames had remained contained to what had been Orr's office, though it had simply been an office he commandeered from some poor clerk.Once outside he found his hat and gun hanging on the hitch rail, he put on his hat, slipped his arm through his gunbelt and started toward where Phinn, Doc Danforth, Jemima and Hector Wigfall, as well as the aggrieved family were.

 

The remains were covered by a blanket awaiting the undertaker.It had been said Phinn had saved Orr, though the man was already gone by the time he got him out. Speed could not think of a more gruesome way to leave this world than burning to death. He took a seat with the others who sat in silence, there was nothing to say, no words that could lighten the load his family would no have to bear. Certainly not one of the most well liked figures in town, but he was a man, a man that left a family behind, hopes, plans, schemes, and dreams. Incinerated in a matter in minutes.

 

He wanted to say something, but what was there to say, really? He saw the undertaker coming  driving his hearse, that meant  the family could get on with planning the coming funeral and whatever was to come afterwards for them.

@Bongo@Wayfarer@JulieS@Javia

Share this post


Link to post

Ralph had been one of the first to respond to the cries of 'FIRE!' and did his fair share on the bucket brigade line. They were lucky it had been daylight and the response was amazingly fast from the locals, the building was saved, only one office had damage but.........one man was dead. Turned out it was Mr. Orr, well that was certainly convenient for Leah Steelgrave and her hospital plans as Orr had been the chief (maybe only) opposition. He noticed as they finished that Matilda and Caroline had made it out of the saloon to watch the excitement.

 

91e6713d9a721080f7ec52dd194db07e.jpg

 

"Ain't that the very man you said you hated, hon?" Caroline asked her boss.

 

"Well now, that would be a fairly long list but yes, I detested him. He didn't give a damn about this town's future or the health of it's folks," Matilda smirked, "I'm not gonna waste any tears on his passing."

 

Caroline shrugged, "Oh well, guess all the excitement's over. Sooo....boss, we gonna close the saloon on the day of his funeral?  Or throw a party?"

 

Matilda gave a chuckle, "Neither, it'll be business as usual. We got a living to make and let's face, he ain't gonna complain."

 

The two women turned to leave, Caroline giving a little wave to Ralph who nodded.

 

Matilda-again.jpg                              CMfor-Sagas.jpg

Share this post


Link to post

"Oh, um, thank you."  Jonah looked up at Jemima as she offered the blanket, giving her a smile, coincidentally as her fingers brushed across his skin, something he barely noticed and certainly didn't note, as he took the blanket and covered the corpse.

 

Sitting back on his heels, he looked up at her and shook his head.  "I don't think it's necessary to come back in.  I'm glad you are doing well, just keep it clean and don't pick at it."

 

He'd b more than happy when the undertaker showed up.  In the mean time...

 

"Marshal," he addressed Speed, "will you need me to do a more thorough examination?"

 

@Javia; @Flip

Share this post


Link to post

Charlie stood looking at the smoke coming out of the post office.  Thankfully, the fire hadn't spread any further and had been contained very quickly.  People were still milling around and he could hear them talking about it.  Looking over to where the body of Richard Orr was lying, he could see Doc Danforth and some others who had come over, including the Wigfall girl, who didn't seem all that eager to leave.

 

Seeing that Speed was headed over to the group, Charlie decided that it was best to follow.  When he had become deputy a few weeks ago, he didn't expect something like this but then again what had just happened was totally unexpected.  Orr had caused a ruckus a few days ago by holding an impromtu town council meeting and now he was dead.

 

"Marshal," he addressed Speed, "will you need me to do a more thorough examination?"

 

Charlie glanced over to see the undertaker approaching and waited to see what Speed had to say.

 

@Flip @Javia

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

Death had once again struck Kalispell. Death was his life; and no death, since that of his much younger wife some sixteen years ago, was not of some material advantage to him. Even the meanest pauper or beggar meant a fee from the Town Council for a makeshift deal coffin and a cursory funeral service at which he and his helper were very often the only witnesses. He had buried poor, rich, friends, enemies, he had buried them all. 

 

"Make way, please gentlemen. I ken you've a deceased gentleman here that requires my attentions" His accent was still unmistakably Scots, but it was softened by many years in the Royal Navy and then the States.

 

"Och! Is that Dicky Orr I see, burnt to a cinder! Pooooorrr man!" he shook his head knowingly, as if he had been predicting this grisly end to the man's career for years. His eerie glance flitted from man to man. "Marshall, Doctor, Mr Wentworth, McVay" he nodded to them all.  "Well what are your instructions, Gentlemen? Has the next of kin been informed? I trust there are no other casualties?" Not that he needed further deaths: Orr was rich, this funeral would be a nice little earner.

 

@Anyone

Edited by Javia (see edit history)
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

"I'd say the cause of death is plain, doubt there's any foul play or McVay wouldn't have drug him out here. He listened to the approaching undertaker, a man not well liked for his brusque manner, and his directness without thought to personal feelings of those 'left behind.'

 

The family was here a bit ago. They know, and unless Mister McVay's got burns to be treated, no other casualties." Speed said."Guess we can just say accidental fire was the cause. I'll look it over. see if there's anything the water didn't destroy that means anything. Sad day, like him or not, just not the way a body should perish." He looked around, "Well Charley, I think we're done here, head up to the Lickskillet give this some thought."

@Javia@JulieS

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post

"Mr. Jolly."  Standing, Jonah nodded to the man, glad that Speed had declared the matter settled on McVay's word, so that he was done with the incident.  And with the fire effectively extinguished, he could go home and clean up, then head to the Lickskillet for some pie.

 

Except...

 

There was Jemima Wigfall, gazing at him with those milky eyes, and he weighed his options.

 

"Mr. Jolly, let me help you with that.  We can wrap him in the blanket then get him to your office."  Where he could sneak out the back!

 

@Javia; @Flip

  • Love 1

Share this post


Link to post
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

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.

Connect With Us On

discord_white

If you would like to join the Sagas' Discord server or are already a member, click the image to open the Discord web application.

Site Credits

Founders: Stormwolfe & Longshot

Sagas' Rating

sagas-rating

×
×
  • Create New...