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Here is a collection of my South Tipp Today newspaper Short stories from 1996-2002.

 

Part One


Deep in the old wild west is where we once found the sparsely populated town, Brandsville, not particularly a town where a lot happened, mind you bit a town with a mythical story in its shadows. The town’s important people called together a small private meeting early in the spring of 1854 to confront the lingering problem of ridding the town of the menacing Brown Brothers. Hours of long exhausting talks saw day turn into night. Finally an agreement was reached.
“ I believe, gentlemen, the advised solution is to hire us a trained gunfighter who will dispose Brandsville of the brown Brothers.” announced  Major Caine.
Nobody was willing to help out until one night a confident gunfighter strolled into town. The character seemed tall in appearance from afar and beared two guns and, surprisingly, looked on foot rather than horseback. Making their way inside the nearest bar there was a less than warm welcome.
“ Would you look what just breezed in , I don’t know whether to fear her or marry her.” sniggered a local.
“Why don’t you drown yourself in your whiskey, partner, and maybe someone with a courteous tongue in their head can tell me where Sheriff Lone is? “ demanded the less than amused mysterious lady. Sitting at the long oak bar the overweight sheriff spoke.
“ I’m here, Missy. What can I do for you? “
“ I hear Brandsville needs a mercenary gunfighter, well I guess I’m your girl.” replied the mysterious lady.
 
Part Two


Trying to keep a straight face, Sheriff Lone replied “ Now listen to reason, Missy, a little dame like yourself couldn’t bring in a fly dead or alive, never mind three tough bad mean outlaws.” Buzzing across the bar the skilful lady shot down a fly straight out of the air in the blink of an eye.
“ Now that fly looks pretty dead to me, Sheriff. Is there a job open here or not? “ exclaimed the mysterious lady. Amazed at her sharp shooting the Sheriff softly whispered “ $500 a man seem reasonable to you? “
Meanwhile the Brown brothers were causing havoc in another town close by. They had ridden into Foxford, guns blazing, to rescue their brother Beck from jail and in doing so burnt the poor misfortunate town down to the ground. Full of pride, reunited, it was time to go home to Brandsville to inflict more trouble.
“ What do you mean you gave the job to a lady? “ yelled the mayor. When the sheriff told him who he had given the assignment to.
“ Well Major, she is more than suitable for the job.” answered Sheriff Lone.
“ I’ll have your badge for this, Lone. You’d better hope this lady is all you say she is cracked up to be.” shouted the furious Mayor.
Early the next morning the bright lady heard hammering at her hotel room door.
“ Miss, Miss! The Brown Brothers are robbing the bank, come fast.” cried the exhausted messenger. The focused lady prepared for combat and made her way to the First National bank. She stood within shooting range of the bank’s entrance with the sun falling on her shoulders. She wanted to open fire.
 

Part Three


Scorching temperature staged the scene for a bitter shoot out. The unfazed lady stood composed and focused as the shuffling of feet was to be heard from within. In an instant, the Brown Brothers stormed out guns blazing as they were renowned for doing. Bullets whizzed through the air. Without warning the mysterious lady was shot in the leg but she managed to hit one of the brothers as she returned fire.
“ Doug! Beck’s been shot.” cried Ike Brown.
“ We’ll be back, Brandville.” yelled Doug.
“ Wait fellow! Come back, ye hear?” shouted Beck.
Afterwards the townspeople appeared from there hiding places as the dust settled.
“ Easy partner and don’t even think about picking up your gun.” growled the gunslinger.
“ I’m dying! I’m dying! Help me.” sobbed beck brown.
“ You ain’t going to die. You’re just going to jail.” replied the mysterious lady.
Sheriff Lone looked up and smiled at Mayor Caine who leaned lazily over the balcony of the local Town Hall, overlooking the street.
 

Part Four


Brandville erupted into celebration later that night. It was as if the mysterious lady had bagged all three of the Brown Brothers, but nonetheless there had been a fine achievement on the day of the capture of Beck Brown.
“ I knew you could prove us all wrong Ma’am. Who would never have believed you could apprehend one of those professional gunfighters.” said a local proudly.
The mysterious lady replied by nodding as he continued to talk. She had a load on her mind and knew for a fact the celebrations were likely to be short lived. Across the state, the remaining brothers planned their revenge. After riding for everlasting hours, they had eventually reached their cousin’s ranch. Here lived a mean, feared desperado who rejected danger. He was capable of gunning down a good or bad man without giving the matter a second matter. As the shadows of the brown brothers crept closer to the ranch, he eyed them bleakly to make sure that it wasn’t any lawmen coming to try and arrest him yet again. When he realised who it was, he left his shotgun resting across his shoulder and smiled.
“ I nearly blew you boys away.” laughed cousin Red.
“ Red, you old son of a gun, you always did know how to welcome family.” returned Doug Brown.


 
Part Five


Sheriff Lone staggered back to the jail after drinking to his capacity in the early hours of the next morning. Stumbling across the dusty street, he fell into the clutches of Ike Brown who grabbed him tightly around the neck as he sat on horseback.
“ Where’s the girl, Lone? “ snarled Ike.
“ I don’t know.” stuttered Sheriff Lone.
Pressing a shotgun against Sheriff Lone’s forehead, he asked again.
“ Phil’s Hotel “ cried Sheriff Lone.
“ You’re pushing my patience, Lone. What’s the room number? “ shouted Ike.
“ Room 10 “ returned Sheriff Lone.
Ike struck Sheriff Lone on the back of the head and then stole the keys of the prison cell to release his brother Beck. Straight away Red and the Brown Brothers marched into the hotel. The owner hid behind the reception desk when he saw the group coming. Rushing up the narrow twisting staircase, they swarmed around the pine door of room 10. Red kicked down the door with aggression and they shot at what they believed to be the mysterious lady lying peacefully asleep in bed. Beck lifts up the sheets to discover they had shot a bunch of pillows.
“ She’s not here, fellows.” cried Beck.
Just then from absolutely nowhere, a bullet disarmed Beck and his gun went hurling out the window.
 
Part Six


“ Ye looking for me, boys.” taunted the mysterious lady as she walked into sight.
“ Famous last words. Open fire, boys.” replied Red.
Drawing both guns from her holster at lightening fast speed, the mysterious lady disarmed Red, Ike and Doug in the blink of an eye. Red dived through the window behind to escape her accurate shooting. However, the brown Brothers stood their ground.
“ Shoot, lady.” yelled Doug.
“ Not today, partner. Hand to hand combat will be a better way of settling this.” replied the mysterious lady.
“ She’s lost her mind. Kill her! “ shouted Ike.
Beck attacked from the left hand side and the strong woman elbowed him firmly into the nose. Ike next got involved in the action, throwing furious punches at her and for his trouble, he received a devastating uppercut to the chin. Doug was now the only brother standing. He fired an oak chair at the mysterious lady. It missed her only just and smashed against Ike as he was trying to pick up a gun alongside the window.
“ I guess you have no more cards to deal, my friend.” exclaimed the mysterious lady.
With a dazzling kick, Doug was thrown onto the floor.
“ Stay just where you are, lady” snarled Red re-entering the room with another gun in his hand.
“ Drop your gun, Red.” smiled Sheriff Lone, who had tracked him down.
After everything had died down and the Brown brothers and cousin Red were in jail, the mysterious lady thanked Sheriff Lone and he thanked her. Before the mysterious lady left Brandsville Sheriff Lone had one question to ask.
“ I never did know your name, Missy.” he quizzed.
“ Only people six feet under could answer that question for you. Farewell, Sheriff.” replied the still mysterious lady.
 

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