MacCallister: The Eagles Legacy: The Killing

MacCallister: The Eagles Legacy: The Killing by William W. Johnstone, J. A. Johnstone

Book: MacCallister: The Eagles Legacy: The Killing by William W. Johnstone, J. A. Johnstone Read Free Book Online
Authors: William W. Johnstone, J. A. Johnstone
Tags: Fiction, General, Westerns
eighty cows and twenty bulls.”
    “That’s quite an order. Let me see what that would cost,” Conn said. He walked over to the ticker-tape machine, a glass half-globe that enclosed the device itself. It made a constant clicking sound, all the while spitting out a long, narrow strip of paper. Conn picked up the paper and ran it through his hands as he looked at the symbols printed thereon.
    “Ah, here it is,” he said. “The latest price is twenty-seven dollars and fifty cents a head for mature cattle. You want five hundred head. Let’s see, that would be ...” he paused for a moment as he figured the cost, “thirteen thousand seven hundred and fifty dollars. Then, of course, there is the fifteen percent handling and service fee.” Conn put a pencil to paper and did some figuring. “That will bring it to fifteen thousand, eight hundred twelve dollars and fifty cents. I’d advise you to make arrangements with your own bank for the loan, as the Cattle Exchange cannot extend credit.”
    “Aye, so I have been told,” Duff replied.
    “Now, what do you say we get your order written up?” Conn said. He sat at his desk and took out a pre-printed form. “And what is your name, sir?”
    “MacCallister. Duff MacCallister.”
    “MacCallister? Of course, I read about you in the Cheyenne Leader this morning. You are the one they were writing about, are you not?” Conn asked.
    “Aye, ’tis me. I had no idea ’twould be the stuff of newspapers.”
    Conn chuckled. “The stuff of newspapers? My good man, it is stories like this that become the stuff of legends.”
    “I’ve no wish to be a legend, I wish only to be a rancher.”
    “Well, with this,” Conn held up the order document, “it would seem you have made a favorable start.”
    “Aye,” Duff said. “Would that my trip had been only to tend to business for my ranch, and none of the other.”
    “It is obvious that you saved the young lady’s life by what you did, Mr. MacCallister. There is no need for you to feel remorse over it.”
    “It had to be done, that is true.”
    “The young woman who was killed ... will you be going to her funeral?” Conn asked.
    “I have been asked to do so by her friends at the Tivoli,” Duff said. “I feel that I must.”
    “From what I’ve been hearing, the whole town will be turning out for it,” Conn said. “It is to be held in St. Mark’s Episcopal Church. That’s a large enough church, but I don’t know if it has enough room for all who wish to attend. You’ll need to get there early if you want a place to sit.”
    Saloons, cheap hotels, and restaurants lined Fifteenth Street along the two blocks west of the Union Pacific Depot. It was not an area that genteel women frequented, though there was no shortage of women for the soiled doves did business in the saloons, hotels, and even in small cribs that they maintained in the alley behind the buildings.
    Between the Western Hotel and Lambert’s Café was a whitewashed building with a high false front. The name of the establishment, painted in large black letters, was Eagle Saloon. Unlike the Tivoli, which had a fine mahogany bar and gleaming electric chandeliers, the Eagle was illuminated by kerosene lanterns and candles.
    Dingus, Lee and Marvin, having returned from Laramie on the next train, were now in the Eagle, sitting at a table near the back, close to one of the two coal stoves that heated the building from early October to late May. Although the stove was cold, the smell of coal still hung around it, and the floor immediately around the stove was stained black with ground-in coal dust.
    “He should’a gone with us when we asked him,” Dingus said. “If he had gone with us, he’d still be alive now.”
    “When are you buryin’ ’im?” Lee Mosley asked.
    “I talked to the undertaker this mornin’. I told him to go ahead and bury Tyler today. May as well get it over with, ain’t much sense in letting him just lie around ’til he starts

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