Wednesday, September 5, 2012
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Episode Nineteen concluded with:
Of course, all the Indians could see Dehner. That fact didn’t bother the detective. The Indians now cared nothing about the people in the cabin. Their only concern was the money which Bret Carson held in his hands along with another threatening match stick.
Rance advanced slowly toward the front door. He didn’t want a loose board to betray him. He paused briefly at the door, then barged inside.
A double barreled shotgun pointed at him. Dehner hit the floor and fired. One of the Macklin brothers went down. Dehner turned toward the sound of advancing footsteps. Rip Gowdy was almost standing over him, gun in hand. Dehner kicked the crooked lawman’s ankle. Gowdy yelled, stumbled and fell to the floor, firing a bullet into the ceiling. Dehner buoyed to his feet grabbed the Deputy’s six gun and stuck it in his belt.
The detective quickly surveyed the area. Both Macklin brothers were lying on the floor. One of them had obviously been felled by Dehner’s earlier shot when he returned fire. The Macklin that Dehner had just shot was moaning loudly. The other lay quiet. The detective didn’t know if he was alive or not and didn’t have time to find out. He grabbed the shotgun, the rifle, and a Remington pistol that were on the floor and tossed them out the door along with Gowdy’s six gun.
“Okay, deputy,” Dehner poured sarcasm on the word “deputy.” “You and I are stepping outside. One false move and I’ll kill you just like you butchered Paul Edwards and those other five men.
“The Injuns did that!”
“Yeah. I bet when the bullets get dug out of the bodies, we’ll find that they all came from a .44, like the one you carry and maybe a few from the Remington you probably borrowed from the moonshiners. I’ll bet all of those men were shot in the back, except maybe the few who had time to turn around before you ambushed them.”
Gowdy said nothing.
“Outside, now!” Dehner ordered.
As the two men stepped out of the cabin, Dehner saw that the remaining nine of the Indians had advanced half way down the hill. The conversation with Akando, Reverend Nate and Bret Carson seemed to be getting increasingly hostile.
Dehner yelled in a loud, mocking voice. “Hey Akando, I’ve got your boss. He may have some new instructions for you!”
Akando’s guard, Enyeto, looked both curious and interested. From what Dehner could tell, so did the rest of the Indians a little further up the hill.
The detective pushed his reluctant prisoner forward and continued to talk. “Yeah, this man, Rip Gowdy, has been the boss all along. Gowdy knew when Marshal Carson was busy with his duties and gave orders to Akando about moving the moonshine, using Tully as a go-between. That’s why only some of Akando’s braves have rifles. This crooked lawman took most of the money, while the Indians did all his dirty work.”
Enyeto angrily yelled something at Akando in a language Dehner didn’t understand. Akando replied in kind. Rance saw Reverend Nate’s body react as if a shock had passed through it. The pastor knew something bad was about to happen.
Enyeto raised his rifle and sent a red flame into Akando, knocking him onto the ground where his body began to convulse. As Enyeto turned toward Gowdy, Reverend Nate fired. Enyeto threw his rifle into the air as he collapsed. The gun twirled upward, then came down, landing on Enyeto’s corpse.
Reverend Nate turned to the Indians on the hill and shouted something to them in their own language. For a few moments the Indians did nothing, then they quietly returned to their horses and rode off.
The clergyman remained silent until the Indians had gone. By that time, Carson had handcuffed Rip Gowdy and Tully Jones was on his feet. “There are only nine of them now,” Nate said. “And we have two of their rifles. They have become a pretty sad bunch.”
“What do you think they’ll do next?” Dehner asked.
“Many will try to return to their tribes,” Nate replied. “For most of them, that will work out all right. Others will become outlaws. You’ll probably meet up with them again, Rance.”
Tomorrow: Episode Twenty-One, the conclusion of Ultimatum