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Quick and the Dead

By Genevieve Kelly

Action / Drama

Chapter 1

Quick and the Dead

Chapter One

"Look out, on your right!" Ezra shouted as he saw one of the outlaws try to sneak up behind the Seven's leader, who was quickly able to deflect the attack when he fired his peacemaker, killing the man instantly as its bullet entered his chest.

"Vin, we could use a bit more of an advantage down here!" Larabee called out to their sharpshooter, who had finally reached the top of the tallest building in their small town and swiftly began to shoot down the killers that attacked Four Corners in hope of destroying the seven lawmen that had come to be legends throughout the West.

Buck kept firing from his cover while keeping his eye on the youngest member of their group squatting beside him as he too fought to bring these men down, then J.D. noticed that the battle was almost won and called out, "We've got them on the run!"

The ladies man cried out, "I know kid, but don't get all cocky on me now! Stay focused and for crying out loud, would you keep your head down? You're going to get your head blown off one day!"

"I'm getting really sick of you reminding me that, Buck," the kid responded in frustration, before a bullet suddenly shot off the bowler hat J.D. wore, causing him to duck down lower to the ground.

"Ah, but it appears Mr. Wilmington here must keep doing so, if only to make sure you remain among the living," the Southern gambler quickly answered after shooting the man who tried to kill J.D. the moment before with the small derringer he wore beneath his right hand sleeve. "It appears the battle is won."

Nathan walked out into the street once the firing stopped and it appeared that all of the assailants were either dead or unconscious, then began to check the men over, and said, "We were all lucky that none of us were hurt this time."

Josiah stepped away from his place outside of the livery, running his fingers along a small wound in his arm, then replied, "Though not all of us came out of this fight completely unscathed."

"How bad is it?" Chris asked as he, Vin, and Nathan joined the preacher, followed by Buck and J.D. once they finished checking to make sure that all threats to them were down.

"It's nothing," Josiah responded quickly as he tried to protest the healer's administrations. "Only a scratch."

Nathan grabbed the big man's arm before he could stop him and stated, "You'll let me be the judge of that."

After a minute, Nathan spoke again saying, "Actually, you're right. It is nothing more than a scratch. It looks like the bullet just grazed your arm."

"Great, now that that's settled, who were these guys?" Buck asked angrily as he kicked one of the men, who slowly had begun to come to.

"What we really ought to be concerned with is who contracted these men to try to eradicate us," Ezra answered as he bent down over the man who appeared to be in charge of their attackers and pulled out a piece of paper, then began to read. "It appears someone has offered a reward of $7,000.00 for anyone who is successful in this endeavor."

Buck reached down and pulled the poster from his comrade's hands as he replied, "Woo wee! $7,000.00! That's $1,000.00 for each of us."

Chris took the paper from his oldest friend's hand as Buck had done, then responded, "This is a lot of money."

"Someone wants us dead real bad," Vin answered sullenly. "And I'm guessing that when whoever placed the hit on us learns that these men failed, someone else will take their place."

"I have no doubt that the reward will increase," Chris replied. "Josiah, Nathan, and Buck, take the men who are still alive to the jail and see if anyone can tell us something about who hired them. If they're not in the mood to talk, give them a motivation to do so. Someone is desperate enough to hire men like these to kill seven lawmen. I want to know who."

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