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       Wildcat Kitty and the Cyclone Kid, p.1
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           Franklin D. Lincoln
Wildcat Kitty and the Cyclone Kid


  WILDCAT KITTY AND THE CYCLONE KID

  by

  Franklin D.Lincoln

  ****

  PUBLISHED BY:

  Copyright © 2012 by Franklin D. Lincoln

  All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form, or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise) without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book.

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, brands, media, and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. The author acknowledges the trademarked status and trademark owners of various products referenced in this work of fiction, which have been used without permission. The publication/use of these trademarks is not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners.

  ****

  The Legend

  This is a story about one of the most notorious outlaw gangs to ride across the pages of western history. No, it is not the James gang. Nor is it about the Daltons, the Youngers nor the Doolins. It is not even about the famous Hole in the Wall gang, led by Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. This is about the Wildcat gang, who blazed a trail of vengeance and retribution throughout the west and became a legend and a beacon of hope to the poor and the oppressed.

  The unlikely leader of this gang put together a following of legendary gunmen. Most notable of these and co-leader of the gang was a man whose exploits had been heralded as tales around campfires and in dime novels. He had become a legend in his own time. His name was The Cyclone Kid.

  “Come out of there and face me, Cyclone,” Black Billy shouted from out in the street.

  The Cyclone Kid straightened and put his half empty glass of milk on the bar. He was a tall man with broad shoulders and women thought he was handsome. He wore a high crowned white ten gallon hat pinched in at the top. Its broad brim shaded his ruggedly tanned face. He wore bull hide chaps and a calfskin vest. A polka dot bandana encircled his strong neck. He wore two walnut handled six guns, resting in shiny black holsters affixed to a studded Buscadero gunbelt.

  He glanced to his faithful Indian companion, Chief Two Owls, who stood next to him. Cyclone said, “You stay here. This is my fight.” He hitched up his gunbelt, picked up his Winchester from the top of the bar, and strode out of the saloon.

  When he stepped through the batwing doors onto the porch, he could see Black Billy in the middle of the street to his left. The Kid left the porch and walked into the center of the dusty street and turned to face his enemy; putting his back to the setting sun.

  Black Billy had almost a dozen gunmen behind him. They were all hard cases and had their guns ready.

  “Alright, Black Billy,” The Kid said evenly. “It’s your play.”

  He saw the twitch in Black Billy’s eyes signaling the start.

  Before any man could open fire, The Cyclone Kid tossed his rifle spinning high into the air. At the same, time, his two pistols leaped from their holsters and fired so fast that the shots sounded almost as one as The Kid emptied both guns into the crowd. Guns flew from his opponents’ hands as he disarmed then all. The outlaws turned to run for their lives.

  The Kid’s pistols were just as quick to return to the holsters as the spinning rifle fell from the air into his hands. He worked the lever in lightning speed, driving bullets into the dirt at the heels of the fleeing outlaws as they fled on foot down the street and out of town in a cloud of dust.

  “Cyclone! Cyclone! Are you all right?” Little Nell the school m’arm cried as she raced up behind him.

  The Kid turned and she rushed up into his arms.

  “Oh Cyclone,” she whispered. “You…you were wonderful.”

  “Yes, little darlin’,” he said. “I was.”

  They walked off arm and arm into the setting sun.

  The End

  Kathryn Carlin closed the dime novel. She turned it over and gazed at the gaudy front cover. There was a full color drawing of the two gun Cyclone Kid. A pistol was in one fist. Red flame was spouting from the gun muzzle. The Kid’s left arm encircled the waist of a voluptuous woman.

  She sighed and said to herself, “What a man. If only I could find a man like him.”

  Kathryn was sitting behind her desk in the little schoolhouse at the north end of town. Although she was not much like the school m’arm in the dime novel, she was Thimble Creek’s only school teacher. She was young, in her mid twenties and very attractive with her auburn hair and green eyes, although she never admitted it to herself. She always thought she was much less capable and alluring than the heroines she read about in the novels.

  She had dismissed school almost an hour and a half earlier and had stayed to read her novel. Far be it for her to let either the parents or her students know that she read such material that was often considered trash and tripe. She did find them entertaining and it gave her a chance to dream.

  Again she sighed and again she thought to herself. “If I could only find a man like The Cyclone Kid.” She had found a man, but he was certainly no hero. She splayed her left hand out on the desk before her and felt a twinge of sorrow as she looked at the naked third finger. The ring that Andrew Wharton had given her was no longer there.

  Andrew had been to Harvard. He was educated and cultured. He was a lawyer and had opened up his office in Thimble Creek. Everyone, including Kathryn’s father said the young man was a good catch and when Andrew proposed to her, she accepted. Yes, she liked the boy, but something about him disturbed her. There was nothing exciting about him, but she told herself that it wasn’t important. Considering her options and the security he could provide, she told herself she was a lucky girl.

  She could fool herself only so far and one day she had broken off the engagement and given the ring back.

  Andrew had become the lawyer for Simon Price. Price owned the largest cattle ranch around. The Big Dollar. The brand was a dollar sign. Over the years, smaller ranchers had sold out to Price and his spread covered almost the entire valley and bordered the Circle C which was owned by Kathryn’s father Tom Carlin. Price was also the mayor of Thimble Creek and the local town judge, as well as the town banker and owned most of the town’s other major establishments, including the Four Bit Saloon, the Silver Dollar Hotel, the mercantile, the stage line and the express company. He also had holdings in various businesses throughout the state. He owned a silver mine in Colorado that was run by Conrad, one of his two sons. His other son, Rafe, had no interest in his father’s business and had been in trouble with the law several times. He was a big disappointment to Simon Price and had not been home in years.

  One day Andrew had driven his one horse buggy out to the Circle C. Tom Carlin greeted the young man cordially. “Good to see you, Andrew my boy,” Carlin said smiling broadly. “I’ll call Kathryn for you. Tell her you’re here.”

  “No sir,” Andrew said coldly. “I’m not here to see Kathryn today. I’m here on official business.” He handed a paper to Tom Carlin. It was a notice of foreclosure. Simon Price held a mortgage on the Circle C and he was now calling it due. Times had been bad for Tom Carlin. Cattle had been rustled and his herd diminished. He didn’t have enough for a trail drive this year and cash flow was tight.

  As Simon Price’s attorney, Andrew delivered the news and the legal document coldly and very businesslike.

  Kathryn was shocked that Andrew would be part of taking the Circle C away from them and she called off the engagement. Andrew didn’t seem to understand and didn’t allow himself t
o believe that he had lost her forever. He was convinced that once she got over her initial anger, she would come to her senses and understand that he was merely fulfilling the responsibilities of his profession A profession that would provide a life of prosperity and security; especially being in the employ of such a powerful man as Simon Price.

  “Don’t be foolish, Kitty,” her father had urged. “You can’t blame the boy for doing his job. Don’t worry about me. I’ll work things out. I won’t be here forever. You‘ve got think about your future.”

  Tom Carlin was right. He wasn’t going to be around forever. Three weeks later he had still not given up his home. One night he went out on the range after rustlers and never came back. He was found dead the next morning.

  Simon Price and Andrew wasted no time in taking possession of the ranch. Andrew told Kathryn that they could get married right away and she and her brother Jeremy and mother Abigail, who was sick and frail and had been ailing for quite some time, could move in with him. He had been provided a nice house on the outskirts of Thimble Creek by Simon Price

  Kathryn .was enraged and refused vehemently, telling Andrew that she could not marry a man who would sell his soul to the Devil himself. She blamed Simon Price for the death of her father. After all, Price did employ gunmen. His foreman, Peso Martin was a hard case who wore two guns and was more of a strong arm man than a manager of cowhands and hostelry. Kathryn vowed that someday she would make Simon Price pay for what he had done to her and her family.

  Paco Menendez had worked for Tom Carlin for many years and was like family. He was old now and was currently serving as cook, general handyman and primary caregiver for Abigail.

  Kathryn confided in Paco about her desire to fight back at Simon Price and how she wished she had gunmen to help her as Simon Price had.

  It was at this time that Paco decided tell Kathryn about Tom Carlin’s father, Kitty’s grandfather. Tom and Abigail and Tom’s mother and father Cyrus had come to Thimble Creek years ago. Paco was with them, even then. They had built the Circle C from scratch, fought bandits and Indians and had carved a nice home out of the wilderness. When Tom’s mother passed away, Tom’s father, Cyrus Carlin lost interest in the ranch. One day he just rode off without a word and never returned. Tom was terribly hurt and angered. He would never again talk about his father or let anyone else ever mention his name, even though the name of Cy Carlin became very prominent in newspaper accounts. He had acquired a reputation as a gunfighter and his exploits began to be the subject of campfire tales and dime novels. .Writers had slurred the name of Cy Carlin into Cyclone and soon he became a legend in his own time known throughout the west as The Cyclone Kid.

  “Then, The Cyclone Kid is real?” Kitty was shocked. She thought he was just character in a book, much less real and even more so to be her grandfather. “I could really use his help now, Paco. Do you have any idea where I could find him?”

  “No,” Paco shook his head sadly. “I don’t even know if he is still alive. If so, he would be an old man by now. I doubt that he could help you now.”

  “Isn’t there anyone I could go to, who might be able to help me find him?”

  Paco told her about The Kid’s friend Chief Henry Two Owls, who she had also read about. The dime novels had stretched the truth considerably and Chief Two Owls was not really an Indian. His name was actually Henry Tolliver. The writers had slurred Tolliver into Two Owls. Paco had heard that Cy’s friend had last been seen working with a traveling medicine show in the Big Bend area.

  Kathryn scraped up enough money to send her mother off to a home in St. Louis. She sent Paco with her to care for her. As soon as Paco and Abigail Carlin left for St. Louis, Kitty and Jeremy set off on their quest to find Chief Two Owls. They were surprised at how easily they had found him. The chief led Kitty and her brother to Sonora where Cyrus Carlin was being held in a Mexican jail.

  They broke the old man out of jail along with another down on his luck ex gunfighter known as Arapahoe Brown. He was somewhat younger than The Cyclone Kid but his best days were already far behind him.

  Now with her gang formed including herself, The Cyclone Kid, Chief Henry, Arapaho Brown and Jeremy; the five of them rode hard and fast against Simon Price and his gunfighters. They wreaked their wrath on Simon Price. They robbed banks, stagecoaches and mines owned by him. They wreaked total havoc and Simon Price eventually dubbed Kathryn, Wildcat Kitty and the gang became known as The Wildcat Gang.

  Simon Price also controlled the law in Thimble Creek. The sheriff, Harvey Trask, was nothing more than another hired gunman dancing to Price’s tune. He had been ineffectual in capturing the Wildcat gang, so Simon Price appealed to The United States Marshal’s office asking for help.

  A young deputy named Matthew Starr arrived and set out on a quest to bring the Wildcat Gang to justice. He came very close many times and one time, he even captured the elusive Wildcat Kitty herself.

  While taking her back to Thimble Creek, they camped on the trail one night. As the campfire embers burned low Kitty escaped and stole off into the night. But she had stolen something else that night. She had stolen Matt Starr’s heart. From that time on, with a heavy heart, he knew it was his duty and responsibility to track down the woman he loved and bring her to justice

  Chapter One

 
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