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Twilight was now setting in, and the posse was now formed. This was the calm before the finally show down. As the wagon train pulled out of town and left the small militia behind on the Sheriff’s office porch steps, Enos couldn’t help but think about what lay ahead. MaryAnne and Sheriff Rosco kept the order and law in Hazzard. He was always proud to call Hazzard home and see the families that lived and worked in and around the town, come and go into town for supplies, the children walking to school, and Sunday morning church services followed by a lazy day. To watch the faces of the mothers, sons, and daughters pass by leaving the comfort and security of the town he so loved, became depressing.

A chord was struck inside when he seen a wagon pass by with a small sandy haired little girl that looked too young to go to school yet drop her rag doll in the dirt. She started to cry and leaned out the back of the wagon, “My dolly! Susie! Daddy, we can’t leave Susie!â€

Her mother pulled her back inside the wagon and tried to explain and comfort her daughter, telling her they had to leave the dolly behind. The wagon train couldn’t wait for a child’s toy. In any minute Blackjack and his gang would come storming in, guns a blazing and ravage the town. Enos swallowed hard at the mental image of his home being burned to the ground. After the group of civilians moved out of the street and were almost to the edge of town, the male deputy walked out to the dirt road and picked up the little rag doll. He brought it back to his horse and opened his saddle bag, slipping the doll inside whispering to the doll, “Don’t worry Susie… I’ll make sure you get back home and your little owner does too.â€

Valerie came up to her brother’s side and squeezed his shoulder gently, “That’s Jeb Arron’s little girl’s doll.â€

He nodded solemnly recognizing the local’s name.

“You alright?†Val asked calmly.

“If that yellow bellied cur thinks robbing, raping and ravaging a town is a way to prove he a man, he should spend a day farming in the fields or earning an honest day’s wage.†Snapping lightly as he spoke infuriated at the very thought of the villain.

Valerie knew her brother’s frustration, “That’s why we’re doing this… so he won’t rob, rape, and ravage this town. So his rein of terror comes to an end and we all can sleep at night.â€

“Val, this isn’t how I expected you to spend your visit to Hazzard. I wish you and I had time to relax and talk. It’s been a while since you joined Buffalo Bill Cody’s travelin’ show.†Enos regretfully explained.

“Blame it on Blackjack, don’t blame yourself.†Valerie smiled then gave her brother a wink, “Besides, who says it’s just a visit?â€

His eyes lit up at the possibility of his sister staying home, “But what about the rodeo show?â€

She shrugged, “I traveled my share. I think I’m ready to settle down now.â€

The elated look in Enos’s eyes gave Valerie a warm feeling of confidence. “Look, I won’t be staying anywhere if we don’t get it together Enos. We got a town to defend.â€

He knew his sister was right. As he was about to answer her, the sound of horse hooves coming closer could be heard in the distance. A couple of silhouettes of riders and horses could be seen on the darkening horizon entering town.

“Is that….?†He swallowed afraid that the time for battle was now.

(Cue Bo or Luke Duke)

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Galloping hooves kicked up a dust cloud as the Duke cousins came flying into town with no time to waste and little care for the town rules on speed. Nostrils wide, Luke's gray gelding threw his head up as he was reined in nearly to a sliding stop in front of the sherriff's office. His equally tired but determined rider swung down and gave the sweaty neck a stroke of thanks, flipping a coin to one of the remaining young men who came running to take and walk the gelding, then tucked his gloves in his belt and slapped the dust out of his hat before stepping up to the porch, glancing over his shoulder.

Bo pulled up alongside Luke, bringing the gelding to a dust spitting stop in front of the sheriff's office. Swinging lightly out of the saddle, he got the young man's attention and flipped him another coin to take care of his own mount. Stepping up to his cousin he gazed at the assembled men and women, nodding to the men, tipping his hat to the women-folk, not in the least surprised with their presence...glad of it in fact, knowing Val, Min and Daisy, at least, were all good shots...as good as any man.

"Afternoon, gentlefolk," Luke half drawled, tipping the edge of his hat slighly with two dusty fingers. He glanced around, honestly relieved. "Looks like y'all are already set for war. Who's in charge?"

(Cue whoever's in town to answer!)

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Lingering smoke exhaled through Chets nostrils as he leaned against the railing of the board walk. He looked out into the coming darkness and the drum of horses hooves echoed until his uncle and father reined up. The younger Duke stepped back from the railing, pressing his cigarette between his lips and watching the older Dukes with a cast of wary mismatched eyes.

He leaned against the side of the building and dragged on his cigarette, staying quiet and out of the way. The stable boy quickly took both horses and lead them away to be walked, watered, fed and rubbed down.

A side ways smirk cast onto Chet lips around his smoke, it was true that the board walk consisted of mostly “gentle folkâ€, you didn’t include him. A small snort and chuckle escaped his throat and nose in amusement, it didn’t surprise him that his own kin had over looked him.

“Aw your too kind Luke, I’ve never been regarded so kindly.†Chet laughed lowly, a sly smirk in his expression. “Gee I can’t imagine whos in charge, do ya suppose it could be old Abe himself?†His laughter continued in its vile tone.

(Cue Luke or anyone.)

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Luke turned slowly to face the young man that had sneered out his opinion, his own blue eyes sharply focusing on the mismatched dark. A muscle tightened along his jaw and shoulders straightened a bit more. “Very funny Chet,†came the dry, yet sarcastic reply, stance and tone both shifting just a bit too casual. “My only question, y’know, is just why you’re standin’ there instead of ridin’ with your buddies. But don’t worry. We’ll handle y’all later.†Visibly dismissing the younger man from his attention, Luke turned to scan across the faces of Min, Valerie, Enos, Chance, Daisy... trusted all, but none the central source of information he sought. “Has anyone heard from MaryAnne or Rosco?â€

(cue Val, Doc, MaryAnne, etc…)

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  • 3 weeks later...

"We're right here..." MaryAnne said as she and Rosco walked out of the Sheriff's office. "To answer your question, Luke, Chet offered to help us against an old enemy, who nearly put both Chet and myself in the ground when I was escortin' Chet here outta town. The outlaw's name is BlackJack Dakota. About six months ago I gunned down his brother at the Boar's Nest Saloon. Ol' Domino made the drunken mistake of challenging a deputy to a gunfight. Anyway, apparently BlackJack's looking to settle scores." MaryAnne looked back and forth between the Duke cousins. "We could use a couple more guns...."

(cue Lukas or anyone! We're still rollin', rollin', rollin'... Khee!)

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"Boy're we glad to see you." Luke looked across his shoulder to Bo with a relieved smile, then reached out to shake Rosco's hand, then clasped both hands around one of MaryAnne's briefly before easing out of the way to let Bo perform his own handshaking. "We've heard varied reports on where and how you two were, and it's good to see ya alive and well with our own eyes. As for a couple more guns, well, that's what we're here for." He nodded to Bo, and the blond man nodded back, lips pressing together as he tugged down the brim of his hat slightly.

"That's right, ma'am... an' actually there's a third gun that'd be willin' out there somewhere," dark blue eyes glanced toward the nearby hills, "if your cousin got enough of a pardon. He's worried about ya you know, but says he'd be killed for comin' into town."

"I think he's still out there somewhere near, though." Luke paused, giving his cousin, then the hillside, a thoughtful look. "I wonder... maybe he could be help even out there, Bo."

"How d'ya mean?" The dusty blond head tilted.

The oldest Duke nodded to the hill where the pair had last seen Brian Coltrane, speaking more to his cousin than to the law at this point. "If we could maybe get him on advance sentry detail..." He paused... then slowly began to smile, blue eyes taking on a fierce glint. "Y'all..." he began slowly. "I just might have an idea..."

(cue anyone)

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  • 3 weeks later...

Min too had heard the approaching horses. Though with MaryAnne, Rosco, Chet, Doc and the Strate twins, they were more than ready if that was BlackJack and his gang of men. Her knees shook a little and she glanced around the room wanting her long rifle and quickly snatched it up. She held the stock so tightly her knuckles were white, waiting for whoever it was to make their appearance.

When the dusty form of first Luke and then Bo appeared in the office, she closed her eyes and sighed audibly in relief. Once again placing her rifle on the Sheriff's desk, she listened to what her cousin had to say and took a cautious step towards the door. Gazing up at the hills she imagined Brian atop his black horse and a small smile came to her face.

Luke mentioning he had an idea brought her attention back from lingering thoughts of the black clad outlaw to the trouble at hand, BlackJack and his men.

Min gazed at her dark haired cousin. Whatever idea he had, she hoped it wouldnt involve something dangerous for the Brian. Though a tough outlaw, he still was recovering from a bullet wound in his side.

"Sentry duty? You mean you want Brian to go combing the woods for BlackJack or did you have something else in mind?"

(Cue Luke or anyone!)

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I see what you mean. This is good stuff.

Great story huh? Brian and I had the best time, and some of the best stuff we ever wrote together is in this round robin. I think it would be really great to finish, even though some people that were in it aren't around that much anymore. Glad you're enjoying it Roger...

Alex

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Alas, there are many unfinished stories. Over the years so many people have moved on and had major life changes that the old writing crowd is busted up.

Been gone for a few months myself. Feel like a ghost here, haunting the place with my return. I'd love to see Buckshot completed, even if we have to do it offline. I wouldn't suggest getting into it now because there's a pending Forums upgrade. Wouldn't be a bad idea to create a backup copy of this one Alex, if you haven't already.

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Alas, there are many unfinished stories. Over the years so many people have moved on and had major life changes that the old writing crowd is busted up.

Been gone for a few months myself. Feel like a ghost here, haunting the place with my return. I'd love to see Buckshot completed, even if we have to do it offline. I wouldn't suggest getting into it now because there's a pending Forums upgrade. Wouldn't be a bad idea to create a backup copy of this one Alex, if you haven't already.

Hey hey Brian!

Good to see you again pal. I do have a hard copy of Buckshot and its over 300 pages! I think we do need to finish it even if people arent around anymore... offline might be the best option.

Alex

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300 pages! GAAAAAH!!

Wow, the kind of time we had back then, eh?

Ya know funny enough, I got ahold of Chet tonight, or vise versa, so maybe this thing aint' totally in the dust. Keep yer fingers crossed.

Yeah over 300! I think the last time I saw the file it was like 370 something. So Chet lives huh? Well if he's willing maybe we can finish this RR after all.

Alex

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Ohhh Im alive and well thank you very much. I would have to freshin up my memory on the current events of this story as I too have been away for a time. It was a fantastic story and tons of fun to write, it would be cool to finish it.

*Tips my stetson.* Count me in.

To quote Dr. McCoy from Star Trek...

Oh... JOY!....

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