Deadwood Dick's Doom; or, Calamity Jane's Last Adventure
A THWARTED DESIGN.
POOR Mrs. Morris again burst into tears on learning her daughter's
fate from the Unknown's lips.
"Oh! what shall I do -- what can I do toward rescuing my poor
child?" she cried, nearly frantic with her loss.
"You can do literally nothing, my dear madam, at present," the
Unknown answered. "It will require a strong, shrewd man to pick the
culprit's trail and discover his hidingplace."
"But, it may not have been this Dwarf you speak of, who has done
this terrible work. Might not Carrol Carner have discovered this place,
and carried off poor Myrtle, after killing Nick?"
"I judge not. Come? I will show you the way back to the town."
"What! not without my making an attempt to discover my poor lost child?"
"Humph! you'd have poor success, as I before intimated. The best
thing for you is to return to town and get accommodations at the tavern.
All that can be done toward finding and rescuing your daughter I will
attend to in person, with as much interest as though she were my own
"Oh! thank you, Sir, thank you! You are a good and noble man!"
The Unknown laughed, darkly.
"Far from that, I am afraid," he said, with a grim smile. "Still
I am not so bad a man as I might be, you see. Come! let us go."
They accordingly left the solitary camp and walked back to Death
Notch, through the moonlight.
The Unknown accompanied Mrs. Morris nearly to the tavern and then
took leave of her, promising that he would devote his earnest efforts to
the recovery of her daughter.
Mrs. Morris then returned to the hotel, and to her room which she
had engaged earlier in the evening.
It was a severe blow, this second disappearance of Myrtle, to the
poor mother, whose expectancy had been so wrought up by the words of the
Unknown, concerning her safety.
The following day was a gloomy one. The sky was black with
ominous banks of clouds, and a steady unceasing rain poured down, from
early dawn till dark.
Yet within the cabin of the old chief, Red Hatchet, a cheery fire
burned upon the hearth, and the chief and his daughter sat before it,
the former seeking solace from his pipe, and the latter engaged on some
"It is a wild day," the chief grunted gloom; "such a day it was
that Red Hatchet was driven from his town, and nearly all his braves
slaughtered. The thought causes the blood to boil in Red Hatchet's
veins, and his spirit thirsts for revenge upon the pale-face usurpers,
more than ever before!"
"Then why does not Red Hatchet go forward and claim his property?
Was it not deeded to him by the Government, in exchange for lands in the
Colorado valley, which the Government wanted, because of their golden
"True! who speaks?" and the old warrior turned about in surprise,
for it was not Siska, who had spoken.
A young Indian, in full paint and regalia of a war-chief, stood
upon the threshold -- a strong, stalwart brave of straight build, and great
muscular beauty, but whose every feature and style of dress proclaimed
him to be of a different race of red-men than Red Hatchet, who was of a
tribe fast becoming extinct -- the Pawnees.
The stranger was further from the south and his features
indicated him to be an Apache.
"Who is the brave whose face is covered with war-paint?" Red
Hatchet repeated, rising to his feet.
"Dancing Plume is no common brave but a great chief of the Apache
nation," was the haughty reply. "He comes from the and lands of Arizona
into the north, with his band of braves, to seek a home in the land of
game and gold, and also a wife for his wigwam. He hears of the wrongs
that the pale-faces have inflicted upon Red Hatchet, and comes to offer
"The Apache and the Pawnees have ever been enemies; why does
Dancing Plume then come and seek conciliation with Red Hatchet?"
"Because Red Hatchet is alone and unprotected, because his spirit
cries for revenge upon the pale-face -- usurpers of his rights, and
Dancing Plume can avenge the Pawnee's wrongs. His warriors are all
young, brave and strong; they would call it but a play-spell, to clear
away the pale-faces."
"Your words sound well, but Red Hatchet is not blind. The Apache
had an object in thus coming to the aid of a foe of his race."
"Which Dancing Plume does not deny. Red Hatchet has a pretty
daughter, whose beauty and goodness, is known widely. Dancing Plume
needs a princess for his wigwam. Red Hatchet is getting old and needs
some one to hunt his game. Dancing Plume would take the Pawnee maiden as
his wife, win back the town of Sequoy and with Red Hatchet dwell there
in peace and prosperity."
Red Hatchet was silent few moments; then he turned to Siska.
"What does my child say to the proposition of the Apache chief?"
he asked, his eyes gleaming at the satisfaction afforded him by the
younger chief's prospectus.
"Siska has nothing to say. It was Red Hatchet who gave her to the
Dwarf; it is for him to say whether he will break his treaty with the
Dwarf, and give Siska to Dancing Plume," was the reply.
"Ah! Then another claims the Pawnee maiden." the Apache said.
"A pale-face Dwarf, to whom Red Hatchet promised Siska, if he
would carry out Red Hatchet's vengeance, as Dancing Plume has offered to
do," the old chief explained.
"Show him to me and it shall be a struggle for the victory!" was
the young chief's demand. "If Dancing Plume falls, his braves shall win
back the town and present it to Red Hatchet. Shall it be as the Apache
has proposed? Let the Pawnee speak!"
"Red Hatchet agrees, but Dancing Plume must settle the difference
with his rival!"
"Wagh! Dancing Plume courts battle! Why should he fear a
pale-face dog, when from boyhood he has led at the head of his tribe! The
tomahawk shall be dug up; Dancing Plume will go for his braves, and ere
another sunrise after the morrow, the war-whoop of the Apache shall echo
through these valleys and mountains. Dancing Plume has said it, and he
Then, kissing his hand to Siska, he turned and left the cabin,
with a firm, stately stride.
A bad outlook was there for the town of Death Notch-a worse fate
was promised those who had driven the Pawnees from their village, which
an unscrupulous Indian agent had illegally assigned to them!
Carrol Carner prided himself on being a villain, and he had often
said it, that the man who could conceive more efficient and novel
schemes of rascality than he, was hard to find.
The following day -- the same that witnessed Dancing Plume's visit
to Red Hatchet -- in the hight of the storm, the Mormon left the town,
carrying with him in a bundle a few articles which he calculated he
No one paid any attention to his departure except Calamity Jane,
and she concluded that he had decided to quit the place before any
About the middle of the afternoon a stranger rode into the
settlement, through the pouring rain, on the back of a scrawny looking
mule, and dismounting in front of the Poker House entered the bar-room.
He was a medium sized man with bushy red beard and hair, and
He'd not recently visited a clothier, evidently, for his lower
limbs were clad in dirty, patched overalls, thrust into the tops of a
stogy pair of boots. The trowsers were in turn met by a greasy red
shirt, open at the throat, with accompaniment of a beltful of revolvers
at the waist, and a slouch hat crammed down onto the head, until it
almost hid from view the eyes.
And dripping with the rain through which he had come, this sandy-
complexioned gent walked into the bar-room and up to the bar, and gasped
out "whisky," in a wheezy tone, as if he had not lubricated his internal
machinery very recently.
Nor did he begin to stop at a mere glass, for no sooner had Poker
Jack set the bottle upon the counter, than he grabbed it up and allowed
the contents to gurgle down his throat!
When he had drained it to the last drop, he returned the empty
bottle to the astonished bartender with a grateful sigh, at the same
time planking a ten-dollar piece upon the bar.
"Stranger, thet war
powerful bad ile -- that arn't a hornet nor even a wassup in et, ter give
et life," he said, in the same wheezy voice, "But when a teller's
machinery ain't iled et won't run, an' so I had to submit to the
"Well, I should allow et didn't cost you much of an effort," Jack
grinned, "fer ye did it right gracefully, and et'll cost ye jest V."
"Take ther saw-buck, pard-take et freely, fer I should hev given
twenty ef thar hed only been jest one good hornets' nest in et."
Then wiping his mouth, he turned gravely to survey the crowd
which the pouring rain had driven into the house.
It was a motley assemblage of rough-shod humanity, evil,
sinister, and not pleasant to contemplate.
For several moments he surveyed them, as if making an inventory
of their different natures then he mounted a table, cleared his throat,
an struck an attitude, as if about to deliver a stump oration.
"Gents-pilgrims-galoots in general, I wan ter ask ye, do I luk
like a cuss who would tell a lie?" he began, in oratorical tones. "Do I
luk ary a bit less than a second George Washington?"
A silence among the crowd was his answer. They had not yet got an
inkling of what be we driving at, and preferred to keep mum.
"Brethren," the brick-bearded bullwhacker continued, after a
pause, "et doeth me dolorous to note thet ye hev yet received no
inspiration from the honest reflection of my countenance. But sech is
fate. Bear et in mind ever hence, beauties benign, thet a man who kin
juggle down a quarto' Death Notch petroleum wi'out ary a bumblebee in
et, is an honest man. More over, feller-citizens, never look adversely
upon one o' yer sex because he is han'sum. Et aire a phenomena pecooliar
tew the male race o' whites. I was once jest as humbly as ary galoot
present but alas I've hed trouble, b'yees -- dire trouble and my benign and
saintly resignation ter ther inevitable hes added luster and glorious
angelic beauty to my physiognomy, despite all efforts of mine to the
contrary. But I'm no saint, pilgrims; not a golden ha'r ner ther sprout
uv a wing is thar about me. No sir-ee! I'm a warrior, I am on ther war-path,
yearnin' fer gore! Shell I tell you why, my disciples? Ay! I will,
tho' et shall wring tears from this heart o' min as large as
"Ter begin wi', picter yerself a pleasant home of a well-ter-do
merchant -- who never took over seven drinks a day in which war a wife and
sunny-haired child. Ther devil comes inter thet house, in ther figger of
a man. His oily tongue tempts the wife; she attempts ter flee with her
tempter, but her child clings ter her skirts an' begs her not ter go. In
a passion the woman smites her own flesh an' blood to the floor, an
flies with ther devil. The child is found by ther fond father, in a
dying condishun, an' with her departin' breath, he sw'ars for vengeance.
Years pass, but at last it draweth near. Pards, hyar before ye stands
thet merchant; do ye wonder be yearns fer bug-juice ter satiate his
"Go'r a'mightly, no!" declared Shakespeare.
"B'ilin' full cl'ar ter my larynx would I be, ef I'd been thru
"On course ye would, an' ef I war ter assert ter ye thet, after
years of search I've trailed my faithless wife hyar ter this very house,
you'd be willin' ter lend a helpin' hand ter boost her up ter a limb o'
ther furst convenient tree, wouldn't ye?"
"Ef evyer fabled monster
quoth the poet, with a caper. "For lordy's sake man, ef thar's ary show
fer a neck-tie party', issue yer invitations to us, ter oncet."
Did perch upon er roost -
Then we're ther very pilgrims
W'at'll lend our hands-to boost!"
"Then know that ther murderess is in this hyar house, in the
guise of a Mrs. Morris, an' I her desarted husband seek revenge," the
stranger cried, fiercely. "Hurrah! give her the rope wi'out parley."
"Don't!" a voice cried, "don't dare to disturb that innocent
woman. Se! this man is an impostor!" and while speaking, Calamity Jane
bounded forward from the hall where she had been listening, and tore a
false beard from the "honest" man's face.
And there, exposed to the gaze of those he had cleverly deceived
stood Carrol Carner, the Mormon!