Thursday, November 15, 2012

Now Playing: Dangerous Calling 
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Dangerous Calling 1

Episode Seven of Dangerous Calling

Episode Six concluded with:

             After the meeting was over, Coogan remained inside the church talking with the various members of the congregation. After fifteen minutes or so, he began to leave the building along with everyone else. A figure emerged from a patch of woods immediately across from the church.  Moonlight cascaded over the figure and it became apparent that he was carrying a gun.
            “You the new preacher ever one has been jawin’ about?” he yelled at Coogan.
            “Yes, brother, I am.”
            The newcomer pulled back the hammer of the gun. “Well, I’m here to kill you!”

Episode Seven

The crowd huddled in front of the church was shocked. Several men instinctively began to reach for guns that weren’t there. Nobody carried a gun to church.
            Sheriff Len Swayze took a step toward the gunman, but Coogan placed a hand on the lawman’s chest. “Let me handle this, Sheriff. I think this man fits my calling more than yours.”
            Abner Coogan walked directly toward the gunman, placing himself between the barrel of the gun and the crowd behind him. Coogan was scared. Fargo was no actor and there was already the hint of a nervous grin on his face. Could his partner help him to pull off the charade?
            Fargo lifted the barrel of the gun, so it was aimed directly at Abner’s head. “You the one they call Reverend Coo…Reverend Goodman?”
            Abner grimaced. This wasn’t getting off to a good start. “Yes, brother, and what’s your name?”
            “Fargo.” Abner knew his partner couldn’t handle two fictional names.
            “Why do you want to kill me, Fargo?” The tension in Coogan’s voice was real. They were now at the hardest part of the act.
            “That God you preachers talk about so much,” the gun in Fargo’s hand began to shake as he spoke. Abner hoped the fool remembered to unload it.
            Fargo continued, “That God let my brother get killed in a accedent. Ruined my life--”
            Fargo was off script. The original plan called for him to talk about a sister who died of a disease. Abner cut in. He didn’t trust him to go much further.
            “You’re angry with God, aren’t you Fargo?”
            “God understands your anger, Fargo and you know what?”
            Even Fargo couldn’t mess up this line. “What?”
            “God isn’t angry with you, Fargo. Not one bit. The Lord loves you, jus’ as much as he loves ever one here.”
            Fargo looked down. With Coogan standing in front of him, it appeared to the people in front of the church that Fargo was crying.
            Abner placed a hand on his partner’s shoulder. “Why don’t you let me have that gun?”
            Fargo handed Coogan the six shooter. Abner kept his hand on Fargo’s shoulder as he turned to the people gathered in front of the church. “If you’ll excuse us, I think this brother and I need to go into the church and pray together for a spell.”
            There were a few grateful “ahhs” from several people in the congregation. Some folks shouted, “Good work, preacher” and other compliments as Abner and Fargo stepped into the church.
            Frank Dunning followed behind them. He relit two kerosene lamps that were attached to the walls directly beside the door. “Will that be enough light?” he asked in a quiet whisper.
            “Yes, Brother Frank, thanks.” Abner whispered back as he and Fargo settled into the back pew and folded their hands.
            The mayor left the church, talked with the folks outside for several minutes, and then got into his buggy. Placing his crutches on the seat beside him, Frank Dunning felt ashamed of himself. How could he have doubted that Reverend Jim Goodman was a genuine man of God? The pastor had boldly approached a deeply troubled man who was waving a gun and threatening to kill him!
            Dunning closed his eyes, “Lord forgive my doubt…” The prayer was short and intense. The mayor still felt ashamed as he drove off.

Tomorrow: Episode Eight of Dangerous Calling