The Escape from the Isle of the Aweful
The day was November 17th, 1871. Dusk was falling upon the Isle of the Awful. Ships were coming in from the coast of England which was only 4 km away. The wind had finally died down for the first time in 3 weeks and the only thing to be heard was the boats rocking and the pitter patter of rain. There was only one last ship to set sail for the day and that was the S.S. Lil’ Rocky. The S.S Lil’ Rocky was heading towards Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and all the crew had to do was lower the sails and load up the last few shipments of wheat, suddenly, a little girl zoomed across the boardwalk up towards the Waylard Orphanage. She was carrying a small package. Inside this package was a small lizard that was to be cooked for dinner at the orphanage, but this young girl had different plans.
8-year-old Alisson brown burst through the front doors of the Waylard Orphanage. All of the other children looked over to see her brown head and purple pinafore dress were soaked. Her pale, wet skin shined in the moonlight above and she was carrying an equally soaking lizard package. Alisson gave the package to the nearest child and said “Give this to Ms. Helga. I’m going to clean up and dry off before she sees me” and she stormed off.
Once Alisson was fully dressed in a clean, navy pinafore and grey shirt, she heard a knock on her door. “Alisson! Come out this instant!” shouted a deep, gravelly, voice. It was Ms. Helga, the owner of the orphanage and the meanest person Alisson knew.
“I’m coming,” Alisson said, “Let me just put on my stockings.” She put on black stockings and came down the stairs.
“You got a yellow tailed lizard. Those taste like bugs meat! I ordered you to find me a newt and instead you bring me this piece of garbage?”
“I didn’t mean it,” Alisson exclaimed, “It’s very hard to see out there in the rain!”
“I don’t tolerate such nonsense. I can see perfectly clear out there. Since you’ve proven to me that you can’t catch a good supper, you shall go straight to bed without anything to eat!” and with that, Alisson’s plan was in effect.
It was now 8:00 p.m. Alisson was still in her pinafore dress. She groped around for a lantern and matches. Once she found them, she lit up the room to see 12 other young, sleeping girls. Alisson had to be as quiet as she possibly could. If she made too much noise, the alarms would go off and she would have to spend a month in solitary. Alisson had already been there 3 times, so she had no plans of going back anytime soon. She slipped on her shoes as quietly as she could, grabbed her lizard parcel and slipped out into the foyer of the orphanage. Moonlight and her lantern were the only things lighting the spooky hall, making the whole room look blue. Alisson tip-toed to the front door, was almost running to open it to make her grand escape when suddenly, she tripped on something. As Alisson looked down at the floor, she saw a tripwire that was broken. She triggered the alarm system, but she was determined not to get caught this time. Forgetting about solitary completely, Alisson broke into a full-on run down the cobblestone path leading to the harbor town on the bottom of the island. She could already to hear the barks of large hounds and the screams of Ms. Helga approaching quickly behind her.
“Get back hear you nasty child!” Ms. Helga shouted. Alisson began to run faster. She couldn’t let Ms. Helga get to her. Alisson couldn’t remember a time in her life that she wasn’t at that terrible orphanage. Her entire life was spent cleaning the place with dirty water, cooking lizards to eat for dinner, and showering once a month. Alisson was sick of it and wanted to live the life of a normal child. Alisson was feeling tired now. Not having eaten, she didn’t have the energy to out run the fast hounds. Luckily, she was small enough to fit behind a normal sized barrel without being noticed, and there was a bunch of barrels in a crevice waiting to be loaded onto the S.S. Lil’ Rocky. Alisson quickly ducked behind the barrels as the hounds and Ms. Helga passed. Giving a sigh of relief, Alisson stood up and looked at her surroundings. She was at the docking station of the S.S. Lil’ Rocky. One of the crew members noticed her and asked, “Can you help me with those crates? We were supposed to leave an hour ago, but some of the deliveries were late.”
“Sure,” Alisson said, “Can I ride with you?”
“I’m pretty sure our ship is not ok with stowaways. I’m sorry kid.” and he turned around and said, “Are we ready to set sail?”
“Almost captain Ulrich.” said another man.
“Why can’t we set sail now?” the captain spoke with anguish in his voice.
“We lost the cook for the ship, and none of us learned how!” the man stated. Captain Ulrich turned to look at Alisson and gave a heavy sigh.
“Do you know how to cook, kid?”
“Yes! I’ve been cooking at the orphanage for all my life,” she started to hear Ms. Helga and the dogs approaching, “Please make your decision quick!”
“Alright, let me help you up.” the captain helped Alisson up and shouted “We found a cook, now lower the sails and head for America!”
“Aye-aye captain!” shouted the rest of the crew, the ship set sail for Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
A Town is Born
2 years have passed since Alisson’s great escape. She became good friends with the crew and she named her lizard Albert. Many of the crew members treated her as if she was their own daughter. Alisson’s closest friend, John, taught her how to lower the sails, fish for food and fire a gun safely. He even gave her a nickname, Ally. Alisson became the best chef there and she prepared the meals every day. Her favorite dish to make was scalloped fish with extra cheese. On May 14th she celebrated her 10th birthday up in the rafters. The rafters were her favorite place to watch the sunrise and sunset and the only way to get down, was to swing on a rope, which she learned how to do cool tricks off of. She was eating some of her scalloped fish when Captain Ulrich came up and join her. “You know, our ship’s docking tomorrow.”
“Yah, I know”
“Well, this was supposed to be the last time this crew would set sail.”
“What are you getting at Ulrich?” Alisson asked.
“What I’m getting at is that our crew will be dispersing as we dock tomorrow morning. And everyone here already has families that can’t take you in.”
“Not even John?” she said, tears forming in her eyes.
“Not even John, but we can set you up with a family in the Arizona territory. We will have a covered wagon waiting for you at the docks to take you there. I promise that you’ll be going to a good home. The people taking care of you are his sister and brother-in-law, so I know you’re in good hands!”
“Okay, I’ll miss you guys though.”
“We’ll miss you too, Alisson.” And with that, Captain Ulrich grabbed the rope, and swung down to have a drink with the crew. Alisson spent her last few moments on the ship, watching her final sunset on the rafters.
As the sun rose, Alisson rang a bell, “Rise and shine! Breakfast is ready!” The muffled groans of the tired crew members came out from the cabins below. John came swinging down from the rafters and he landed right in front of Alisson’s breakfast table.
“Morning Ally! What delicious meal have you prepared for us today?” John said, a cheerful tone in his voice.
“Scrambled eggs,” Alisson said with a heavy sigh, “I wish I could stay with you. You were my best friend here and you taught me so much. How can I let this adventure go?”
John gave a small chuckle, “Oh Ally, you don’t have to let any of this go, you just have to hold on to the good memories! How about this, once you get to your new home in Arizona, you can start sending me letters. That way, we can stay in touch.”
“That’s a good idea. Thanks John!” and with that, Alisson started to enjoy her last few hours with the crew,
At 10:17 am, the S.S. Lil’ Rocky docked at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Alisson hugged her friend’s goodbye and got Johns address to send letters. It was very hard to say goodbye to all of her friends, but eventually Alisson shrugged off her tears and got into the covered wagon to leave for Arizona.
The paroles trip took 5 years. Alisson was taken in by the Smith family. There was Charles (dad), Elaine (mom), Emily (7), and Nicolas (3). Alisson had to learn how to hunt for food and make clothes. One time, on her 13th birthday, Indians approached the family’s campsite. The chief explained that they were in their territory, so if they didn’t move the site, the Indians would use them as blankets. Being the oldest child there, Alisson had to help the Smiths find a new place to sleep for the night by watching for predators, preparing to fight them off, and protecting Emily and Nicolas. Another time, a pack of wolves showed up at their campsite, so the family threw stones and screamed at them to scare them away, and thankfully it worked. On one fateful day, Alison was eating her 15th birthday biscuit with Emily and Nicolas who were now 12 and 8. Nicolas looked up and shouted, “Ma, Pa, We’re here! We’re here!”
“We are?” Alisson asked with excitement, “Oh my goodness! I can’t believe we made it! The first thing I’m going to do once I’m moved in is write my first letter to John. And then I’ll introduce myself to everyone who lives here!”
“Hold your horses Alisson,” Charles said, “I know you’re exited to live here, but we have to unpack everything first, and that means furnishing our new house. Are you going to help us, or will you go straight to the Jellytown bar and grab yourself a root beer?”
“I’ll help you guys put the house together. After all, I’m a part of your family, right?” Alisson said
“Yes you are, and you will be responsible for finding something to eat.” Elaine said.
“Awesome!” Alisson squealed with delight. She grabbed her one bag and leaped out into the street and yelled, “I am Alisson Smith Brown, and we are your newest residents!”
Chaos at the Jellytown Saloon
It was 9 am on a Tuesday. Alisson now works at the Jellytown bar and is cleaning the counters. Sally, the bar owner’s daughter came in with a crate of new shipment of beers and other alcoholic and non- alcoholic beverages. The bar had a warm atmosphere this morning. The brown tables and chairs were bathed in sunlight while the dark brown floorboards creaked when someone shifted their weight. “It’s a lovely morning, ain’ it?” Sally said as she set her crate down on the countertop.
“It is quite nice. You know, your father hasn’t been coming here lately. Is he okay?”
“Yah,” Sally said with a sigh, “He’s fine. He’ hasn’t been feeling too great after ma left to take care of her ma last week”
“I’m so sorry! I just hope your grandma is okay.” Said Alisson.
Sally chuckled, “Don’t be so sorry! My Pa just gets depressed easy. She should be back on the 5th of December, which is only 1 week away. After that, he should be as happy as a sailor!”
“Oh my goodness! Thank you for reminding me. I haven’t written my weekly letter to John yet! I’ll do that after my shift here.” And Alisson wrote something on a napkin and stuffed it into her boot.
“Alright, I think we’re ready to open up! Shall we?” Sally asked.
“Absolutely.” And with that, the girls pushed the doors open and shouted, “The Jellytown bar is now open for the day!” pretty much everyone set their things down and rushed towards the bar to grab a morning drink.
It was now 11:00 am, and around 30 people had come by the bar that day, which was pretty good for a morning. Alisson had talked to almost everybody there. Sally was busy in the back preparing the drinks for customers and counting how many bad puns Alisson made that day. Alisson was currently talking to Mayor Dewy, the mayor of Tombstone. “I predict that we will still be thriving in the 19 hundreds! Yes, we’ll be the capital of this territory and people will flock to come and see shows at the bird cage theater and everyone will want to come grab a drink at the Jellytown saloon!”
“Well we can only hope so, Mr. Mayor. Now you’ve been here for 3 hours and haven’t ordered anything yet.” Said Alisson.
“Oh yes! I completely forgot. I was spending so much time talking to the citizens, ordering a drink slipped my mind! I think I’ll have ginger ale, thank you!” Mayor Dewy said with a chortle. Alisson wrote the order down and slid it over to Sally who was making drinks. “You know, I feel today is going to be great. Like one of those days that can’t possibly go wrong.” The mayor said with a twinkle in his eye.
“I feel the same way, Mr. Mayor” Alisson smiled.
“Oh please, don’t be so formal. I know you’re from England, but manors aren’t as important as friendships here in Tombstone. Call me Dewy!” and the mayor gave a little wink to Alisson. “Who wanted the ginger ale?” Sally’s voice shouted from the back of the room.
“That would be me!” the mayor said. Sally slid the foaming glass of ginger ale towards the mayor and he gave Alisson a 5 dollar bill. “Thanks!” Alisson said, and she put the bill in the cash register. A couple jokes and ginger ales later, Mayor Dewy got up and said, “Well, I believe I must attend to some business. Have a wonderful business day.”
“You too!” said Alisson and Sally, then they both giggled.
It was now 6 pm and the girls were getting ready for a burst of people to storm in. the work day was just about over and most of the townsfolk stop by for a drink. A lot of the people had already come in for their drink before supper, but pretty much of all of the town came in after 6. This time Alisson was making the drinks and Sally was taking orders. Suddenly Mathew, the one that always gets into trouble, burst into the bar. “The mayor’s missing!” every head in the bar turned.
“What?” Alisson said, anguish in her voice.
“The mayor has gone missing! There was a note at his seat at town hall. I have it in my pocket, if I can find it.” Mathew dug around in his brown satchel and pulled out a lot of butterscotch wrappers before grabbing a crumpled piece of paper and handed it to Alisson. She was taken aback, why would anyone hand her something for the sheriff to handle? Well, Alisson didn’t have much of a choice, the sheriff wasn’t here so she opened up the letter and began to read.
You have been lucky enough to find this letter at all. You probably haven’t seen the mayor of your town in a few hours. Usually he roams around the town all day, and when he’s not doing that, you know he probably has a meeting at the town hall, where you found this. I believe you’re precious Mayor Dewy has been found passed out in front of the town hall and he unfortunately has been taken from your grasps. He wants your town to thrive and prosper, I want it to crumble and collapse, and that can’t happen if he’s around, now can it? I wish you best of luck finding him, and whoever finds this note, give it to the person who you think was in close relations with the mayor.
Eduardo Esteban III”
Everyone stared at Alisson, a look of pure horror and shock on their faces. The silence of the people standing around her was almost deafening, and she couldn’t take it anymore. “We have to do something!”
Everything was black. He couldn’t see anything but black. The air around smelled like old carpet and dusty spurs. The Mayor was certain that he was taken to the old mill, that hadn’t been dusted since 1877. He felt something being tied around his wrists and ankles, then something was lifted off of his head. Mayor Dewey could now see around the old mill. Patches of sunlight covered the floor and walls, but there was a certain spot where no sunlight could possibly reach and in this spot, a figure stood. The Mayor squinted to see the character in more detail, but He just couldn’t. Suddenly, from those very shadows, a deep voice spoke, “Well, well Mr. Mayor. You were able to show up to our little show. I’m so happy you came. You proved to be a real struggle, but we eventually captured you!”
“We?” the Mayor said with confusion. He only saw one figure, so why was this person saying that there was more people. As the mayor was thinking of this, the mysterious man stepped out into the light. He was wearing a green overcoat with brown pants and boots. Two gun holsters were at his sides and he wore a gold ring on his middle finger. Then another man stepped out next to the first. This one had blonde hair and was wearing a plum poncho that had little yellow tassels at the end. The mayor looked up at the two men to see them grinning wickedly. “Who are you?” Mayor Dewy asked.
“I’m Eduardo and this is my comrade Antonio.” The man in the green overcoat said.
“Hello Mr. Mayor” the man in the plum poncho said with a thick Spanish accent.
“Our third member has been busy making sure the townsfolk aren’t suspicious. He is the bravest man of us all,” Eduardo and Antonio held their hats to their hearts for a couple of seconds, “you’ll meet him in due time, but for now, you will be stuck here.”
“Well, I know for a fact that the sheriff will come to my rescue. That’s what he’s payed to do!” Mayor Dewey said with pride.
Antonio snickered, “Maybe that’s what we want Mr. Mayor. You are just the bait for the little sheriff. The town loves you. They look up to you. You’re the one that keeps the town peaceful. Without you, it will collapse, so they’re bound to look for you to restore order. And once the sheriff comes.” He drew his finger across his neck, and then laughed like he just told a really funny joke.
“Why do you always laugh at that? It’s not a funny thing. Remember we’re the bad guys! We don’t laugh at stuff!” Eduardo exclaimed.
“Well don’t you think it’s evil to laugh at other people’s pain?”
“I guess you’re right. You think differently than I do, amigo.”
“What are you going to do with me while we wait?” the Mayor said, a nervous tone in his voice.
“We are going to torcher you!” Eduardo growled.
“With food!” And Antonio pulled a table full of pastries and sweets in front of the chair that Mayor Dewey sat in. Chocolate gnash was falling from a fountain, bowls full of candy were overflowing, and cakes were covered in delicious buttercream with 3 layers. “It looks so good!” Antonio said with hunger in his eyes.
“We cannot eat this food. It’s the only torcher device we have right now. We’re still waiting on the savory table to come in, but somebody is too lazy to actually pick it up and bring it to our base!” and Eduardo gave Antonio the death stare. A gasp came over from the chair. Mayor Dewey’s eyes were sparkling and his mouth was watering. Food was Mayor Dewey’s favorite thing right next to his town, so to have a table full of pastries and candies just out of his reach is torcher, and it’s also what Eduardo and Antonio wanted. All the mayor could think about was getting that food, but it was just out of his reach. Sadness overcame him and he became limp. “You won’t get away with this! The sheriff will come to my rescue and get rid of you guys so I can eat all of that food!”
Eduardo smiled menacingly, “Oh, Mr. Mayor, we already have.”
“No we haven’t! We haven’t even started part two of our plan, and don’t get me started on how we could still loose to the sheriff and-”
“Just shut up, Antonio!”
A Drink and a Conversation
The Jellytown saloon was just about to close up for the night. Alisson was on a break from work and was sipping on a root bear. The disappearance of Mayor Dewey was taking a toll on the town, even though he had only been gone for six hours. The town just seemed to be out of control. The bank along with some stores along the town were robbed, and there was an incident at the O.K corral, and stampedes of cattle and horses were happening every other hour. Alisson was already sick of hearing the people scream outside of the saloon. The door to the saloon swung open and a man in a blue overcoat stepped inside. He was currently the only other person in the saloon besides Alisson and Sally. The man sat down at the bar, slid $5 towards Sally, and said, “Whiskers on the rocks.” Sally took the money for the drink and silently started prepping the drink. Alisson hadn’t had someone to talk to since noon, so she said, “Crazy huh. The mayor just disappeared like that, and now the town is falling apart!”
“I know what you mean. I mean, the O.K corral situation took at least 2 hours to clean up. We lost some good people today.”
Alisson sighed“I’m just tired of hearing those people scream. Don’t you think that their voices would be gone now?”
“We’re just simple townsfolk trying to do our jobs, and many people worked at town hall. A good quarter of the population worked at town hall or for the mayor, and without him, a lot of our population doesn’t have a job.”
“And without a job, you can’t make money and that’s why the town’s freaking out!” Alisson realized
“Exactly” and as he said it, the man’s drink slid on the countertop to his seat, “Thank you”
“Your welcome.” Sally said with a huff, and she walked over to the back room and started counting stock. Then Alisson realized, “You know, you don’t even know my name yet, do you? I’m Alisson. Alisson Smith Brown. What’s your name?”
“I’m Oliver Jenkins, the new sheriff of this town. I know I’m supposed to be looking for the mayor right now, but the town is just too out of shape. I have to make sure that no more disasters happen in between now and the time that the mayor is rescued.”
“That’s so cool,” as Alisson’s face lit up, “If you need any help, I’d be willing to! Sally’s dad is going to be starting work again tomorrow, so he can cover my shifts for the period of time I’m helping you!”
“Sorry, but I don’t think a bar tender is qualified to maintain order in a town and go on a dangerous mission to rescue an important political figure from possible bandits who have guns that could kill you!” Jenkins put his right hand on the table to show that he was missing half his ring finger.
Alisson scoffed, “I think you’re underestimating this bartender. The first 8 years of my life, I spent trying to escape an orphanage that’s more like a high security prison. I spent 2 years of my life on a cargo ship, and on that trip I learned how to maintain the sails and fire a gun. I also spent 5 years of my life traveling across the country. I fended off wolves and Indians. Now I’m a bartender who occasionally has to break up a fight. I think I’m qualified to find the mayor and catch some bandits.” The sheriff blinked, then sighed.
“I’m sorry, but I can’t change the law. The mayor has to appoint a deputy for the sheriff, and nobody can appoint themselves.”
“First of all, the mayor isn’t here! He can’t appoint anyone unless he’s here, and second of all, you need help! Your deputy was lost in the O.K corral today, and no one can keep a town in order by themselves! Just except my help, please?” and with that, Alisson dawned her best puppy eyes. Sheriff Jenkins gave a sigh. “You seem qualified enough.” Alisson’s face lit up.
“Yay!” Alisson leaped out of her seat and hugged the sheriff.
“Report to me tomorrow at 8 am sharp.” And he took his drink and left the bar.
“You’re going to have to bring that glass back sir!” Sally’s voice came from the back.
Early Morning Cleanup
At precisely 7:30 am, Alisson woke up and ran down stairs to grab some breakfast. Charles was already at the breakfast table, for his job was cattle herding and it required early rises. “Morn’ Sweetheart! Have an early shift at the saloon today?”
“Not today. I got the day off work, so I’m going to train as a deputy!”
“What?” Charles said with shock.
“I met the sheriff yesterday and he needs help with finding the mayor, and his deputy was killed in the O.K. corral incident so he lost his help and he can’t hire a new deputy because the law requires the mayor to do that. So the sheriff is training me to be the deputy so that he can get this job done. Okay, bye!” Alisson grabbed a biscuit, slung her satchel over her back, and ran out the door.
“Wait, the mayor’s missing?”
When Alisson arrived at the sheriff’s office at 7:59 am. She set her stuff down an observed the room. It was a quaint office. The dusty brown room had two windows that had closed blinds, making just enough light to see the plants and desk. She sat in the opposing chair to the desk and waited for the Sheriff to come. As soon as 8:00 hit, the door burst open. Sheriff Jenkins walked into the room and looked at Alisson. “You ready to start your training?”
“I’m so ready! I barely got enough sleep last night because I was so excited to get started!”
“Too bad, Sleep is one of the first things you need to succeed at this job. Follow me to the ranch.” And with that he left the office. Alisson, feeling dejected, followed the sheriff to the ranch. On the way there, she realized that she will be seeing Charles. She started to feel better and ran to catch up to Sheriff Jenkins. “So what’s the first thing we’re going to do?”
“You’re going to learn how to heard cattle. Ever since the stampede 12 hours ago, we’ve lost 13 cows and 2 horses. So you, Mr. Smith, and I are going to rally them up so that we can have more transportation for the townsfolk.” Jenkins gave a little smirk and took a swig from a canteen.
“Are you already drinking? It’s only 8:15 in the morn’!”
“It’s not alcohol, I just filled it with water. It’s the only water container I have and you should always have water with you to hydrate.”
“Good point.” And they continued walking in silence. After 30 more minutes of uncomfortable silence they arrived at the ranch. Alisson started running towards the stables. She could see Charles. She shouted, “Hey Charles!”
“Alisson? Hey cupcake! I thought you were training to be the new deputy, what happened?”
“I’m still doing that, but our first task is rounding up the horses and cattle that escaped yesterday!”
“Well, let’s get to it, we have more stuff to get under control.” Jenkins said, and he walked off towards the stables. Charles and Alisson looked at each other, then followed Jenkins.
Charles got three horses out for them to ride, “Alright you two. I’ve got your horses ready. I know you both know how to ride a horse, but only one of you knows how to heard cattle. Jenkins, you can go ahead and get started, I’ll stay here and teach my step daughter to do the same.”
Alisson’s face lit up with joy, “You called me your step daughter?!”
“I did, but don’t get too excited, we’ve got work to do.”
“All right… step dad!” Alisson nudged him and then gave up and got on her horse. This horse was her favorite and when she first came to the town, she had named the horse, Midnight, since he’s black. “Alright, Charles, how do I heard cattle?”
“Well, you start by moving in a zigzag movement to get them in a loose herd, working from the rear of the herd. Don't linger too long in an animal's blind spot though, otherwise it will turn around and look at you. Take your time, as you may need to make large movements according to how large the pasture is and how far out the cattle are spread out. This will take time and practice to get down but the more help we have today, the better we are off tomorrow. Now get out there and heard some cattle!”
“I’ll try my best!” Alisson exclaimed, and she rode off into the distance to find some cattle.
It was now 2:30 pm. Charles and Jenkins were sipping lemonade while waiting for Alisson to get back. She was supposed to be back an hour ago, but she still wasn’t back yet. “How many did you get?” Charles asked.
“I got the two horses and two cows.”
“I got 5 cows back.” Charles said a proud look on his face, “It’s a good thing cattle don’t roam very far, and otherwise we probably would’ve only caught one each.” Suddenly the sound of hoofs came very close. Alisson was back with 5 cattle! “Wow! Sweetie, I’m impressed with your work today!”
“I guess you’re better than I thought you’d be, Alisson.”
“Oh no, I was just lucky to find that these guys were all together. It took me all morning to find them.”
“We’re still proud of you.” Charles said with a sweet smile.
“Whelp, we’ve got more work to do helping the town get back in shape.” Sheriff Jenkins started to walk away when Charles said, “Thank you so much for your help today!”
“You’re welcome.” Jenkins said.
“See you at dinner, step dad!” Alisson said, then she ran to catch up with the sheriff to go get the town back in shape again.
Fizzy New Things
It was now 6 pm. Alisson and Jenkins had gotten the town all put together again, and the people were feeling safer now that they knew that the sheriff was going to find him. Since they fixed the town so fast, Sheriff Jenkins gave Alisson the rest of the day to help out at the Jellytown saloon. Sally and her dad, Kentucky, were over joyed to see her come to help out with the stock and bartending. Sally’s mom had come back that day and Sally was non-stop talking about her mother’s adventures to and from Colorado, where her grandma lived. “, And then, she escaped just before the Indians could burn her. She is so cool!”
“Yah, she sounds like a true adventurer. I bet if your dad didn’t get so bummed out every time she left, she would be a world famous adventurer!”
“Of course she would. My ma is the person you should talk to before your big adventure. She knows a lot when it comes to escaping deadly situations and also getting into them so she has an interesting story to tell us when she gets home. Oh, I forgot to mention, we are getting rid of the root barrel drink. No one wants it for some reason.”
“Can I try it before it goes?” Alisson asked. She loved root beer and she never tried the new drink. It also sounded like a different type of root beer.
“Only after all of our customers go home for dinner and we start to close up.” and Sally went back to work making the drinks. Alisson turned toward the front of the bar and saw her family walk in. “Charles, Elaine, Emily, Nicholas! You came to visit me?”
“Of course Ally! We just had to come and watch you do your job. Nicholas was especially excited. Besides we received John’s newest letter and it was addressed to all of us! So we decided to bring it here to read it with you!”
“Dear Smith Brown Family,
Since your last letter, I’ve gotten married! She’s a lovely lady named, Mary. I will be moving to Delaware because the housing there is cheaper and also her family lives there. I would love you to come to our wedding so we can see each other again. We’ll be having it in New Orleans between where we live and we so you can have an easier time getting to us, also my parents live there and they hate traveling with a passion. I really hope you can come. It’s been so long since I saw you all and I want to see the kids more grown up. They must look so different!
Alisson nearly fainted with excitement with the fact of seeing John, “We have to go! He was pretty much my pa on the ship, so to see him again would mean seeing my long lost father! Not to say I don’t love you, Charles. You’re awesome, but John taught me how to survive on sea. If it wasn’t for him, I’d probably be dead!”
Elaine chuckled sweetly, “Oh, Ally, of course we’re planning on going! He’s my brother, and if I missed it, I would lock myself up in the county jail!”
“Thank you so much! Sorry, but we’re closing now so I’ll see you at home, Okay?”
“Okay sweetie. See you in 30 minutes!” Charles picked up Nicholas and held Emily’s hand and the smiths walked out of the now empty Jellytown saloon. Alisson ran to the back to search for the root barrel drink she was promised. Like usual, no one ordered it that night, but she was too excited to think too much about it. She found the crate with the fizzy drinks and popped the lid off of one. Alisson took a long gulp and set the drink down hard on the counter, fizz spilling out of the top. Alisson started to feel strange, like her heart was beating faster and her vision was getting blurry. She couldn’t hear straight either. She heard someone call her name from the distance and she felt her head hit something soft. As her vision regained she saw she was back at home in her cozy bed. The whole Smith family, Sally, and her father were all standing over her bead with worried looks on their faces. She could hear footsteps coming from behind the small crowd but they were blocking her vision preventing her from seeing who was pacing. “Oh thank goodness you’re okay!” Sally said and she flopped on Alisson to give her a hug.
“Don’t squeeze her two hard. She didn’t fall too hard, but she probably still has a headache.” Elaine said reaching for a cold wash cloth.
“At least she’s okay,” said the voice of the man who was pacing behind the group, “Hopefully she’ll be better by tomorrow morning to start our investigation.” It was Officer Jenkins!
“Thank you all so much for looking after me, but I’m really confused though. I only took one gulp and it felt like I teleported here. How’d that happen?”
Sally’s father stepped up, “We checked the ingredients and found hypertholic caffeine. This is an ingredient that accelerates and amplifies the effects of the caffeine so that when you ingest it, the effects make you feel like a time traveler when in reality, you just passed out for an hour.”
Alisson sat up straighter and said, “Wait, wasn’t the mayor found passed out in front of the town hall when he was captured? That was the day we debuted the root barrel and he was the only person who ordered it!”
“So, you think he was poisoned in a way so it would be easy to capture him?” Sally asked.
“All of the evidence is right here in the note!” Alisson handed the note to Sally. Jenkins read the letter over her shoulder.
“She’s right,” the sheriff said, “Get some rest, Alisson, and we’ll start our investigation tomorrow morning at 8:00 sharp.” And he walked away down the stairs, his overcoat flowing behind him.
Just Off Target
At 8:00 in the morning Alisson arrived at the sheriff’s office. She was told to bring the bottle that she drank from and the note that Eduardo left. Sheriff Jenkins burst into the room and said to Alisson, “Meet me at the shooting range after you put the bottle and note in the evidence cabinet. Grab the potato gun when you leave. It’s on my desk.” Then he walked out leaving Alisson to do her business. She was now used to his habit of bursting into the room to give orders and just leaving. As soon as Alisson finished filing the evidence, she went to the shooting range just west of where she was now.
As soon as she got to the range, Alisson saw Jenkins loading his potato gun. She approached to where he was and said, “What’s the plan for today, Jenkins?”
“You’re going to learn how to fire one of these guys.” And he pulled the trigger. A potato flew out of the muzzle, almost hit Alisson’s ear, and splatted on the bullseye of the target. “You’ll also learn how to stay clear when someone is firing.” Jenkins said with a frown, and he put his gun away.
“Awesome! I already learned a lot of safety tips when I was out at sea, so I should be able to master this in under an hour!”
“Well, if you don’t know when to move out of the way when someone is firing, you’ve got a long way to go.” Alisson sighed and started to load her potato gun.
Sheriff Jenkins was pacing back and forth in front of Alisson, an unamused expression on his face. “The first thing you need to know about safety, always point the muzzle away from your non- targets, keep your finger off the trigger until ready to shoot, and no matter what, always act like the gun is always loaded, even if it isn’t.”
Alisson stood there looking confused. “First of all, that was more than one thing about potato gun safety, second of all, I told you that I’ve learned how to use one at sea, just in case a pirate ship attacked us.”
“Well, this is different. You were learning how to fire on rough seas. Uneven balance has an effect on your shooting, but you’re now on solid ground. You’ll start off rocky, but you’ll be great at the end of the day.”
“Okay, I’ll try it.” And Alisson picked up the spud pistol, cocked it, aimed at the target, and fired. The potato missed the target completely. From the distance she heard someone shout, “Ow, my knee! My favorite knee!”
“I told you.” Jenkins said. He loaded his potato gun and said, “You were aiming where the target would’ve been if you were sliding to the right on a boat, but right now, you have to aim for where the target is.” He took a sip from his canteen and fired 3 times. All three potatoes splatted onto the center of the bullseye, “Now you try.” And he handed his gun to Alisson and she took aim. Scarred, Alisson closed her eyes and turned her head to the side. She slowly pulled the trigger, and the potato plopped onto the ground. Jenkins sighed, “You have to apply force to the trigger pull. Otherwise, you waste a potato. Confidence is key to a successful potato shootout. Keep practicing, I’ll be getting us some lunch at Brenda’s Chuck Wagon. When I come back, you better be hitting the target.”
“Yes sir!” Alisson exclaimed.
Jenkins sighed, “Don’t call me sir.”
30 minutes later, Jenkins came back with 2 BBQ sandwiches to see that Alisson was loading both potato guns. As soon as she was done, she started firing at the target. Jenkins closed his eyes in fear of hearing that same person in the distance shout, “My other knee!” but instead, he heard 2 splats. He looked up and saw that Alisson had hit both potatoes on their respective targets. “Very impressive Alisson. You have improved so much since I’ve been gone, and it’s only been 30 minutes!”
“Well, I just got used to shooting on solid ground. That’s all!”
“Well, you did a good job. We’re going to go back to my office now and figure out where they took the mayor.
Storming the Hideout
They had finally arrived at the old mill. It was 2:33 pm and the sun was beating down like mad. Jenkins and Alisson both, were drenched in sweat. They needed a plan to get into the mill stealthy to avoid Eduardo and his “Amigo”. But Jenkins knee was out for the count. Alisson dug around in her horse’s saddle bag for paper and a pencil to plan out the break in. As she was making the map of the interior of the mill from memory, she started to feel choked up again. Tears started streaming down her face and onto the partially completed map. “I’m so sorry! I didn't mean to hurt you. I just wanted to help you, but instead I hurt you.”
“Yes you did. I'm disappointed in you for not thinking first, but it's time to move on. You can't be crying when we sneak in. That will blow our cover more than heavier footsteps, so please be quiet and draw the layout for us, please?”
“ okay.” Alisson wiped her tears away and went back to work on drawing.
Alisson had finished the map by 2:41 pm. Jenkins had found a stick on the ground and started to doodle. “Alright, I've drawn out the layout of the inside of the mill for you, now we just have to figure out how to get the Mayor out.”
“The note says that ‘we've got him tied up’ so that means that we'll have to have a cutting device nearby to free him. From what I can tell by your map, there is a ladder out on the south side that we can use to get onto the roof. From there we can access the panel on top, slide
open, tie the rope we brought to something on the roof, and you’ll help me slide down and then you'll slide down after me. Got it?
“Got it! Now after that, we’ll get a lay of the land and see where his chair is, hide behind that, cut the ropes off, and take him home through the main doors. The bandits should be focused on the empty chair, so that way we’ll make a clean getaway! Are you ready?” Alisson said, a big smile across her face.
“I'm-” but he was cut off with,
“Great! Let's head in!” And Alisson ran to the south side of the old mill.
Alisson had some trouble standing the ladder up quickly and quietly, but 15 minutes later, she finally had gotten it up to the right height. She hoisted the sheriff onto her back and started climbing. She slipped up a couple times and almost dropped Jenkins. But she caught him before he fell to the ground. As soon as Alisson reached the top of the roof she collapsed with exhaustion. Carrying someone on your back that's heavier than a small child is very tiring. After a long swig of water, Alisson started tying the rope on a latch on the top of the roof. Thankfully, Jenkins could still use his left leg and both arms, so he slid down the rope himself and gently la dead in a heap at the bottom of the floor. As soon as Jenkins crawled away Alisson slid down herself. They both crawled over to the backside of a barrel, and started looking for The chair that the mayor was tied to. The chair was in the left most corner, but as soon as they found it, Eduardo and Antonio busted through the front doors
“ our third member is stopping by today,” Eduardo said with an evil grin, “he is looking forward to seeing your face for the very first time.”
“ how are we going to get them away from the mayor so we can untie him?” Allison asked.
“we'll just have to wait it out. It looks like they are only coming by for a quick visit.” Jenkins assumed.
“ we will be waiting outside until he returns. Got it?” Antonio sneered
“ yes sir.” Mayor Dewy said with a heavy sigh. Eduardo and Antonio left maniacally and left the building. “Quick! Let’s go untie the mayor before it’s too late!” Allison said. They quietly crawled towards the back of the chair the mayor was tied up in. “It’s OK Mr. Mayor, we are going to get you out of here!” Sheriff Jenkins cut the rope open and they all started to crawl out when suddenly, Eduardo shouted from outside, “ not so fast.”
Don’t do crime if you can’t do time
Alisson, Jenkins, and the mayor all stood shaking in their boots. Granted, the mayor didn’t have boots, but he was still very afraid. They had gotten themselves caught within two seconds of freeing the mayor. They could all see a silhouette behind Eduardo and Antonio it looked like someone they knew, but no one could tell who it was. “Our third member is here with us today. Come here amigo, I think you know these people!” Eduardo said with a wicked grin. The figure stepped out into the light, “Matthew?” Allison, Jenkins, and the. Mayor guest at the same time.
“ that’s right!” Matthew said, “the bumbling idiot turns out to be the bad guy.”
“ but how could-how does-I don’t Understand! You were the one who told us that the mayor was missing. How is it possible that you were on their side?”
“ simple,” Matthew snickered. He started to pace around the rim, “I got the letter from my boss here, and pretended like I had found it in Town hall. After everyone had left I placed the bottle of root barrel next to the outside door of the Jellytown saloon. Apparently I wasn’t supposed to do that, oh well at least you guys found where we were hiding. Now,” Eduardo handed Matthew up at Cato gun. Allison, Jenkins, and the mayor grew horrified expressions on their faces, “ I’m finally going to finish you off, Jenkins!” Matthew fired the potato gun and Jenkins dogged it just before it hit his other knee. “We have to get out of here!” Allison cried
“Do you have your potato gun with you?” Mayor Dewey asked.
“ oh right!” Allison said with realization. She pulled the gun from her holster and grabbed a potato from her bag. She loaded it, cocked it, and, and fired right for Antonio’s face. With her practice from her time on the ship and at the shooting ranch, she managed to get Antonio right in between the eyes. “Yes!” Allison said With glee.
“You did it!” Jenkins said, a huge smile on his face, “ I’m so proud of you right now, but there are still two left. I’ll help as much as I can but since I’m injured you are going to half to get Matthew yourself. Do you think you can do it?”
“Of course I can, but please don’t hurt them too bad. They’re already devastated about Antonio, I don’t want to make their life’s too much worse.” And with that Allison stood up from behind the barrel that she was hiding behind why did the potato gun and fired. But she did not aim for their heads or knees, the potato head smeared all over the floor right where they had been. “I don’t want to hurt you more than you already have been emotionally, but what you did was wrong and unforgivable. If you try to make a move on me, you are the ones who are going to have a face full of potatoes.” Eduardo started to laugh maniacally.
“What? Do you think I cared? Do you think I care that he’s gone? I’m a villain. I don’t care for Anyone!” And Eduardo fired at Alisson’s shoulder. She cried out in pain, because even though potatoes are the same as actual bullets, they still hurt a lot. Matthew turned his head from his heart friend over to the girl clutching her shoulder trying to hold back tears. His amigo done this to her, That was one step too far over his line.
“Hey, we had a below the torso policy. Why did you break it? I thought we had something!” Matthew said with anguish.
“Of course we do amigo, but someone is in our way of that something and we need to eliminate him and his accomplice.” But Matthew didn’t listen.
“If you are going to be my amigo, you are going to honor our policy. I’m sorry for doing this.” And with that, Matthew pulled the trigger of his potato gun and a potato flew out and hit Eduardo’s right kneecap.
“Ow, my knee! My favorite me!” Eduardo screamed in agony. Matthew gave a sly smile.
“If I had a cool one liner, I’d say it right about now. But now it’s time for me to put you behind bars.” Jenkins said. Allison headed to pairs of handcuffs from his bag and Jenkins cuffed up Antonio and Eduardo. “I didn’t think there was going to be a third, so you’re going to be tied up in the mayor’s excess rope.”
“But I saved you! If it wasn’t for me you’d all be seriously injured by potatoes! How come I have to be locked up?”
You were still part of their scheme, Matthew, you are just going to be in there for less time because of the good deed that you did. Thank you for that. Now, Allison, Bring me the access rope!” And Allison and Jenkins tied up Matthew.
It’s the end already?
It was a week since the mayor had been rescued. This was the most mayor Dewey had eaten in his entire life due to the lack of delicious food. When she was working her shift at the jelly town saloon, Alisson would tell the story of her bravery, rescuing the mayor, and Matthew being part of the bandit group of most wanted in the west all along. Nobody got tired of hearing the story, even Sally who usually got bored of Alisson’s stories after one day. But this one is more exciting than all of her other stories. This was an adventure worth cherishing! On this particular day to make your busted into the Jellytown saloon. “ Quick! Come to the front of the Town hall! Something very important is happening!” A confused look on her face, Alisson set down her cloth and glass and raced outside to see what was going on.
She saw a large crowd of people there including her family. The mayor was standing on top of a makeshift stage along with the sheriff. Alisson waved hello, and they both waved back. “Now it has come to my attention that we need to recognize some important figures in our town of tombstone. Our sheriff , sheriff Jenkins, Led to the case to come and find me. Even with an injured me he still managed to bring me home safe. So I would like to give this metal of honor to you, sheriff Jenkins! I know it’s made out of turquoise, but we couldn’t find any gold so this is what you’re getting.” Everyone was clapping including Alisson who felt somewhat forgotten. “ and we can’t forget the true heroine of this adventure, or she helped sheriff Jenkins with most of the case. She even brought one of the three banditos to their spudtastc misery! Of course I’m talking about Miss Alisson Brown!” Taken aback, she stepped up onto the makeshift stage, “to honor you the whole town is promoting you to deputy of tombstone!” Alisson jumped so high that she practically touched the sky. The excitement that she felt now was nothing compared to the excitement she felt when Jenkins excepted her as a deputy in training. She gladly excepted her turquoise badge and pinned it to her leather vest. She then turned to face the crowd a huge smile plastered across her face. “Nice job, kiddo! Now, being a deputy is a lot more serious than a one time case. Do you think you’re ready?” Jenkins asked.
“Of course I’m ready, sir!” Allison ran down the stage to greet her family, “Charles! Elaine! I’m so glad to see you!”
“Us too. Now you have to hurry up packing. John’s wedding is in a couple of weeks and we have to get a Head start!”
“Oh my goodness! You’re right. I better start packing. I can’t wait to see John again!” Alisson started to run off to her family’s home, but then paused and turn back around, “ hey, Elaine? Is it OK if I can bring Jenkins to? I think he would get along with John very well.”
“Of course that’s okay with us.” Elaine said, “you just have to make sure Jenkins is OK with that too, okay, sweetie?”
“I’m okay with it. On our journey to the Old mill, that was pretty much the only thing she would talk about, so I’m kind of interested in meeting this guy.” Alisson squeed, “But before we go, the deputy and I should probably visit our new prisoners.” So Allison and Jenkins went to the county jail to go visit the three banditos.
When they arrived Matthew was dragging his tin cup across the bars, Antonio was asleep, and Eduardo was watching him intently. When Eduardo heard the footsteps coming to his cell, he immediately turned around and ran up to the bars. “Good afternoon folks! We’re just checking in on you to see if you have come up with any plans to escape.”
“We haven’t yet. But we will! The three-“ Matthew looked at Eduardo with the stare of a thousand suns, “the two banditos Will break out of this dump! You’ll see! You all will see!” Eduardo said with crazed eyes.
"I think you guys just need some sleep. You look exhausted. You will feel less angry if you get some sleep, okay?” Alisson said softly
“I will not take orders from some puny deputy and her sheriff-”
“Listen to the girl and get sleep.” Intimidated by Jenkins glare, Eduardo backed away and found the most comfy corner closed his eyes. Chuckling, Alisson and Jenkins walked back in the direction of town to start packing for Jon’s wedding. As soon as they were out of sight, Eduardo opened one eye, and started laughing, “I’ll be back.”
Or is it?