Monday, December 3, 2018

Andi's Journal - Yosemite, Here We Come! Part 5

This journal entry is turning into a novel. I can't even remember the date. I wrote late into the night. My fingers are flying with recording what happened. It's all coming back! 
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Chapter 5
Andi’s heart thrummed. Anger, despair, and a sick feeling in her stomach all swirled together. A hot flush worked its way up her neck.
How dare he?
Without thinking about the consequences, she doubled over and shrieked in false pain. The man pulled away the pistol. “What in tarnation’s wrong with you?”
By now, Shorty had been released. He smacked the man who’d tackled him and hurried over to the tall road agent’s side. “Confound idiots, that’s what they are.”
Andi didn’t respond to either of the two men’s words. At least not vocally.
She clasped her hands and elbowed the tall one in the stomach. When he clutched his belly, Andi reached up. She ripped off his mask and stepped back.
And gasped and stumbled back a step. “Troy!”

It couldn’t be, but it was. Her sister’s outlaw husband was at it again. How long had it been? Six years? Hadn’t the man learned anything?
Troy gaped at Andi. Then he swore and reached for his mask.
“Too late for that now, Big T,” Shorty muttered.
Breathing hard, Andi backstepped until she fell into Riley.
He closed her in a tight embrace. “Of all the ridiculous stunts,” he whispered. “You could’ve been killed.”
            Troy stood frozen. He seemed to have forgotten about his robbery. His brow was furrowed, his gun clasped tightly in one hand. But it was pointed at the ground.
“Yeah, it’s me, Andi,” he said.
“How could you?” Andi burst out. “When you rode off that day at the creek, you had the perfect chance to turn your life around. You could have gone back to Kate and the kids. I know they miss you. Why did you—”
“Shut up!”
Andi’s mouth snapped shut. 
Troy waved the gun around. “No more surprises. I’ve had me a bellyful of unwanted shocks. First, the gunshot. Now this.” He looked disgusted.
A moan suddenly came from the portly man on the ground.
He’s alive! Andi’s heart leaped. But probably not for long. Not here in the middle of nowhere.
“Look what you did, Troy!” Andi clenched her fists. “I never took you for a killer. A swindler and an outlaw, yes. But not”—Andi waved her hand toward the man—“this.”
Riley pulled Andi to him. “Getting hostile and yelling won’t help us out of this fix.”
“Have you any idea who this road agent is?” Andi snapped.
Riley shook his head.
“Troy Swanson.”
A look of realization dawned on Riley’s face. “Your brother-in-law.”
Former brother-in-law,” Andi corrected. “The Carters disowned him six years ago. I haven’t seen him in all that time.”
“If it were up to me, you wouldn’t be seeing me now, either,” glowered Troy.
“Does any of this matter?” the older gentleman stepped up. “Mr. Henry is in great agony. He needs attention before he bleeds to death. And he needs a doctor.”
The gentleman’s wife lowered herself next to Mr. Henry. She examined him briefly then faced Troy. “Please, sir. I was a nurse during the War. Let me help him.”
Troy and Shorty exchanged glances. Shorty shrugged.
“We’re about an hour’s ride from our destination. They have a doctor there,” the driver put in.
Troy chewed on his lower lip before speaking. “Here’s what you’re going to do,” he finally said. “You men load ol’ Mr. Henry into the stage. Then you go on your way. Take the fellow to Wawona. I don’t want to be hounded by the law for murder.”
Andi relaxed. Troy looked pale and uncertain.
“Thank you, Troy,” she said softly.
“Don’t thank me yet.” He pointed his pistol at Amber, the other young lady, and Andi. “The nurse can go along to tend Mr. Henry. Shorty and I’ll keep our eyes on these young ladies. By the time you get back, we’ll be gone, and they’ll be tired and cold . . . but still here.”
“Over my dead body,” the young dandy from the city yelled.
Troy slammed his face with the butt of his pistol.
That silenced him.
Andi looked at Riley. He was simmering in rage and fear. Fear for Andi’s safety.
“I’ll be all right,” she told him. “I know Troy. He won’t hurt us.” I hope.
When Riley didn’t answer, Andi urged him, “Hurry, before Mr. Henry dies. Then Troy will have no reason to keep us alive any longer, not if Mr. Henry dies and he’s marked a killer.”
Troy smirked. “Who is that fellow, anyway? You know him?”
Andi gave Troy a stiff nod but didn’t elaborate. “A friend.” It was none of his business.
Silence fell.
“Get going!” Troy burst out. “It’s getting late.”
Three men worked on hauling the limp and bleeding Mr. Henry into the carriage. They laid him out on the front bench. The older woman climbed up beside him. She was holding a cloth to a chest wound. Her lips moved in silent prayer.
The rest of the men joined her. The driver climbed up into his seat and gave the horses a brisk “Giddup.”
The last look Andi had of her new husband was his worried face peering out of the carriage. He waved. I love you. Stay safe.
Andi couldn’t hear his words, but she knew what he’d said. 
Her heart turned over. Will I ever see Riley again?

 

22 comments:

  1. This is great Mrs. Marlow! I can't wait till next week!

    -Patience🐎

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  2. Oh wow! At least we know she does see Riley again!

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  3. Wow! This awesome! Troy is back at it...I wonder what she told Kate about this..and how Kate reacted.

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  4. Savannah Musser 🌺December 3, 2018 at 9:05 AM

    Finally I guessed right! I was sure it was T.J.! I always wondered where he went after he ran away... It would be cool to see him lay down his life for Jesus!

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  5. That was very wise of Andi not to tell Troy who Riley was...definitely avoided unwanted complications for the moment. This is getting exciting!
    Emily

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  6. RRG! I knew it was Troy! He oughta learn by now that he can't go around lawlessly, killing other people and not getting consequences for it!

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  7. Yes! I finally guessed right! I new it was T.J! 😱 Can’t wait for more!

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    1. Savannah Musser 🌺December 4, 2018 at 11:49 AM

      Oops! I didn’t mean to say the same comment twice....🙊 Sorry about that guys!

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  8. LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  9. AHHHHh!!!! This is crazy! Can't believe it is T. J.!! You are so good at writing suspenseful endings Mrs. Marlow!
    -Alyssa

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  10. I love it!!! The only problem is that I'm getting all the fan fiction stories mixed up with the real ones........ I can't remember what happened to Troy!

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    1. This is not a fan fiction story. This is my story . . . so it will match anything that has already happened in the CC Adventures and/or Milestones. :-)
      Troy left in Family Secret and this is the first time he has returned.

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  11. Not the most romantic way to spend a honeymoon . . .

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  12. I'm glad everyone is enjoying it. I believe next Monday finishes the story.

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    1. Savannah Musser 🌺December 5, 2018 at 3:27 AM

      Can’t wait!

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    2. Yay! I can't wait Mrs. Marlow! This has been a really great story:)

      -Patience🐎

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    3. Aww! I'm gonna miss these Monday entries. . . thank you for them, Mrs. Marlow!

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    4. The Monday entries aren't going away. Just changing subjects, like now Andi's brief stint as a substitute teacher. Eeks!

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    5. Oh wow!! That will be hilarious =)
      -Alyssa

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  13. Oh, whew! Wait! Andi's a substitute teacher?!

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Let Andi know what you think!