About your Book:
The story of the way west in the early nineteenth century was often a tale of danger, death and unspeakable suffering. The early trappers and mountain men forged the trails westward for the pioneers that followed and became part of the legend of the American West. Of this hardy breed of early venturers one name stands out above the rest: Kit Carson. Many stories of his bravery, often wildly exaggerated filled eastern bookshelves of the day.
How much of what was written was true and how much was fantasy? Cavalry officer Captain Tom Adams vowed to seek the truth behind the legend and along the way faced near shipwrecks, attempted assassinations, Indian massacres, murder, and torture in an odyssey that he never believed would have been possible.
Targeted Age Group: 30+
Genre: Western Adventure
The Book Excerpt:
Excerpted from Chapter Two: The Protector of Mexico:
“Well Joshua, what say you and your associate to a bit of lunch at the Rite Spot Saloon about now? It is lunch time and I could use some company.”
Adams guessed that Clemens and the Emperor must be close friends as Clemens called him by what must be his Christian name, Joshua.
Norton’s affect brightened.
“Splendid idea Sam. Colonel Adams here will be joining us with your gracious permission.”
“Of course he shall and Adolphus may even spare a scrap or two for your mastiffs.”
Adams thought he detected a twinkle in Clemens’ eye when he turned to the former captain—now colonel—and spoke:
“The Rite Spot is a block or so east on Merchant, and we’d better get going if we are to find a seat. They are quite busy this time of day.”
The three men and two ‘mastiffs’ exited the Herald and began walking up Merchant Street. Norton and his dogs led the way with Adams and Clemens following a half dozen paces or so behind.
Adams spoke to Clemens in a low voice.
“I am astounded that almost everyone that we have encountered this morning—except for that tailor—has been so exceptionally kind toward the Emperor and have been gracious enough not to point out that he is obviously delusional. I find that to be a most generous display of human kindness and tolerance. After what I have seen for the past four years this acceptance of Norton’s hallucination is a welcome sight.”
“Yep. The folks here are of a live and let live frame of mind for the most part. Occasionally you may run into a carbuncle like Costa. I assume that he is the tailor that you speak of, the greasy little worm.”
Arriving at their destination, Clemens moved ahead and opened the door to the saloon.
“Here’s the Rite Spot. After you, gentlemen.”
Norton was the first to enter, gesturing grandly to the bartender and patrons followed by Adams, Clemens and the two dogs.
“Greetings Adolphus. We desire a table for lunch if you please. If there may be a scrap or two extra from the kitchen we are certain that Lazarus and Bummer would be more than grateful.”
“Afternoon Emperor.” Adolphus gave a half hearted salute.
“Lemme clear off a table in the back.”
The bartender, holding a disreputable looking bar cloth in his hand walked from behind the bar sporting an apron that had more than likely not seen soap and water since the shelling of Fort Sumter and ushered the Emperor’s party to a table in the back, pulling out a chair for the Emperor to seat himself. Norton nodded in appreciation and handed the man a fifty cent promissory note.
“Thank you Adolphus, our friend and loyal subject.”
“Thanks to yerself, sir.” Adolphus turned and headed back toward the bar.
Norton I, Emperor of the United States of America and Protector of Mexico had arrived with his entourage for his afternoon meal.
Adolphus returned shortly with three schooners of beer.
“Fish stew terday, yer worship. I’ll get ’er right up.”
“Thank you, good sir,” came the reply from Norton, who then turned to Adams and spoke in sotto voce:
“It’s fish stew near every day, Colonel. But no matter as it is a hearty and filling broth.”