By Erik Hare, guest writer & author of the Barataria Blog
“I know where Duluth is, Marshal.”
“Good. I’ll let you know if I see him again.”
“OK, fine. Here’s my card. Call me if you see Bernhaven or the Trawler.”
“Call … yes, I will. Right away.”
The order was barked, the car doors were closed, and the engines roared into life. In a few moments, Danger Bay was calm again. Susie made her way to Silverthorn’s.
Trouble for Mayor Maggie?
When Susie walked into Silverthorn’s, there was silence. It wasn’t clear to her if the forced hush came when she walked in, or if it had been there before, but it was a deafening kind of silence. GotBob and Sarah at their usual places, with Lysa just paying her bill on the way out. They all looked at Susie as if she had just stepped in from the Twilight Zone.
“Has anyone seen Roscoe?”
“He left this morning, on the Tenstrike,” answered Sarah.
“Was he alone?”
“Yes, he was.”
“I’ll wait here for him to come back.”
“What makes you think he’ll come back?” GotBob asked.
“I just do.”
After a few hours measured out by coffeespoons, the call first came from Sarah. The Tenstrike was back! It was coming into the dock right now, with Roscoe at the helm!
Susie went down to the dock to confront Roscoe, who didn’t notice her at first. What he saw was the entire town walking down to the dock! Everyone knew by now that this was the answer to the mystery that involved all the special agents and large guns and talk of an armed takeover. Everything came down to this.
Roscoe was spooked, and immediately started unlashing the trawler as fast as he could. Susie called out, “It’s OK, I just want to talk! You’re in no trouble!” And he did stop. The whole town stopped, too, because they were pretty sure that he was in trouble and they were only there to find out what kind. Susie made her way to gentle talking distance as Roscoe stood there, shaking with cowardice.
“Its fine, you’re in no trouble with me. I just want to know the story.”
“It wasn’t my idea, you know!”
“You just came from Canada, didn’t you?”
“Yes, but I was only the hired Captain!”
“Is Simpson, ah, Big A with you?”
Just then, a big figure came out from below. It was Big A, the man who’d been missing! The crowd gasped as he stood up, sure that this is who Susie really wanted. But she addressed him calmly.
“You had a run-in with these Federals when you crossed?”
“A misunderstanding,” Big A was grinning as if he could charm her.
“This was your operation, wasn’t it?”
“We just went to see our neighbors, that’s all.”
“Why were those Federals so upset?”
“I dunno. They get that way, I think.”
It wasn’t going anywhere. It was time for the big question.
“Do you know where Mayor Maggie is?”
“I’m right here!” came the call from the hold.
Another gasp ruffled the crowd as she stood up. Mayor Maggie, looking a little pale, addressed everyone.
To be Continued…