|Posted by Mandy Baggot on March 17, 2015 at 3:00 AM|
I'm so excited! It's my turn on Written Fireside this week and my first attempt at writing a proper historical western!
If you want to catch up on the story from the very beginning, here are all the links you need to the previous parts:-
Part One - Lori Connelly
Part Two - Paty Jager
Part Three - Julie Lence
Part Four - Susan Horsnell
Part Five - Aileen Harkwood
Part Six - AJ Nuest
And here is my part, Part Seven...
‘Don’t you move another damn inch, Montgomery Anderson.’
Fannie’s tone was threatening but Daniel picked up on the slight tremble of fear. He watched her settle her feet down into the dirt, her arms raising the shotgun, her eye trained down the barrel.
‘You ain’t gonna shoot me,’ Montgomery stated. He waved his weapon in challenge.
The man swaggered forward, his boots kicking up dust, his tan pants already licked with dirt. He looked weathered, his long hair underneath his Stetson, greying and limp. But he was still pointing a handgun at them.
‘Please… we’re sorry,’ Will said, big frightened eyes directed at Montgomery.
Marigold was still in Daniel’s arms, her eyes flickering shut, her wound still bleeding, he shifted his eyes to Fannie and set his voice low. ‘You know this man?’
‘Yes, I know him. The whole town knows him. For all the wrong reasons.’ Fannie made no move to lower the weapon.
‘It isn’t like you think, Miss, not really,’ Will spluttered.
Montgomery continued to slowly pace toward them. If he got any closer Daniel suspected Fannie wouldn’t hold off from firing. He had to do something.
‘You, boy, get over here,’ Montgomery barked at Will.
‘You stay right here,’ Fannie responded.
The boy looked flustered, not knowing which way to turn.
‘Give me the girl,’ Montgomery snarled.
‘She’s hurt.’ Fannie held fast to her aim. ‘And she’s not your property.’
The man laughed then, throwing his head back and dropping his gun a little. Fannie seized her opportunity and fired. BANG!
The shot hit the dirt just half an inch from Montgomery Anderson’s right foot. He creased his face into a snarl and took aim with his pistol.
‘Drop your weapon, sir, I’m from the marshal’s office,’ Daniel tensed every muscle he possessed, layering his words with conviction.
Montgomery noisily hocked back a mouthful of saliva and spat it to the ground. ‘I don’t care if you’re God himself.’ He thinned out his lips. ‘Give me the girl.’
The whimper came from Marigold and Daniel straightaway looked down into those emerald eyes. ‘It’s going to be just fine, sweetheart.’
‘Is she gonna be alright?’ Will asked, fear in his voice.
‘Take her inside,’ Fannie ordered, not moving her eyes from Montgomery.
‘You don’t move an inch,’ Montgomery warned, his gun poised. ‘I’ve looked after that girl and those boys since their parents passed and I don’t intend on stopping now.’
Daniel saw what that statement had done to Fannie’s composure. The shotgun was wavering now as she stared at the man, trying to take in what he’d just said.
‘You took them in?’ Fannie asked. She momentarily looked to Will before turning back.
Montgomery didn’t reply but held her gaze. Daniel couldn’t move. He didn’t want to leave Fannie with this unsavoury character. He feared for her, despite Doc’s assurances about her crack shot capabilities.
‘Why would you do that?’
‘They had no one else.’ The reply was short and sweet.
Daniel watched something like understanding cross over Fannie’s features and she nodded.
‘You didn’t do it for them, did you? You did it for yourself.’ She took a firm grip on the gun again. ‘Just what have you been getting them to do for you?’
‘Please, Miss, don’t hurt him,’ Will begged.
‘It’s none of your business,’ Montgomery said, his teeth bared. ‘That’s the trouble with you teacher types. You just can’t help yourself from sticking your nose into things that don’t concern you.’
There was malice laced around his words and Daniel mentally put Montgomery Anderson at the top of his list of suspects for every single bit of trouble in Cold Spring.
‘Please…’ Marigold gasped again. ‘I’m so cold.’
Daniel looked down at the girl in his arms. Her dress was now fully coated in thick, red blood.
Check out Kathleen Rice Adam's website next week for Part 8!