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Lethal Six-Gun

Lethal Six-Gun
Vickie T. — 11 Oct 1998, 9:31 PM

I hadn't intended to write another Voyager City story, but the kids are monopolizing the TV (it's Guts and Glory Night on the History Channel), I should be balancing my checkbook (depressing), and this idea just came to me. So, here it is.

This story takes place abut 2 1/2 years after Tom and B'Elanna returned to the Delta Q with their newborn daughter.

Tom gave one last tug on the lashing straps across the bay gelding's loaded pack saddle, looked up and grinned. "Looks like we're ready to go." He then turned and held out his arms. "Come 'ere, you, and give your Daddy a good-bye hug."

Kathryn and Chakotay, standing arm and arm on the Delta Q's front porch, smiled proudly as their granddaughter leaped into her father's arms.

"What about Momma?," B'Elanna asked, pretending to pout. Tom reached out and pulled B'Elanna into a wiggling, giggling, three-person hug, with kisses exchanged all around.

It had long been Chakotay's custom to inspect the Delta Q's distant line camps twice a year, spring and fall. He chose to make this a solitary task, using the time alone to think, meditate and confer with his spirit guide. However, three trips ago, he invited Tom to accompany him, and Tom, with some apprehension, accepted the invitation. Kathryn and B'Elanna paced the ranch house floors in poorly disguised anxiety for much of the two weeks the men were gone. The women were much relieved when their husbands returned, to all appearances, in fine shape. Close, albeit surreptitious, inspection revealed no evidence of black eyes, split lips, or other indications of a reawakening of the animosity once shared by the two men. After that first trip, it was accepted by all that the semi-annual inspection trip would now be a two-man operation.

After one last round of good-bye hugs and kisses, most of which went to a certain sassy little girl, Tom and Chakotay mounted their horses and set out toward the south, headed for Line Cabin #1, located mid-way along the boundary between the Delta Q and the Nistrum Ranch. The two men rode for several hours in companionable silence, when Tom spotted what looked like a covered wagon against the horizon. Tom and Chakotay altered their course somewhat in order to investigate. Soon they were close enough to see that it was indeed a covered wagon. The sight of the wagon's inhabitants, however, was enough to bring the two men to a dead halt, jaws dropping open and eyes wide with amazement.

Lethal Six-Gun, Part 2
Vickie T. — 11 Oct 1998, 9:35 PM

Tom and Chakotay blinked their eyes, closed their mouths (with some effort), and glanced quickly at one another before turning their gaze back to the wagon, or, to be more accurate, back to the scene around the wagon. Lolling in the shade of the covered wagon were 6 women, all in various stages of dress, or perhaps one should say undress. Two of the ladies wore nothing but high-heeled boots, long stockings, knee-length bloomers and camisole tops covered by tightly laced corsets.

As the two men approached the wagon, one of the women spoke, in a soft, whispery voice. "Howdy, gents, sure is hot out today, ain't it?" At her words, the man bent over the wagon's broken rear wheel straightened and turned. Once again, Tom and Chakotay exchanged glances before Chakotay nodded and said, "Howdy, Reverend Windes. Having a little trouble this afternoon, I see."

Both men dismounted from their horses. "Oh, Chakotay and Tom. I am so glad to see you. I'm having the very devil of a time getting this wheel back on the wagon. We broke some spokes when we hit that rut over there. I've managed to repair the spokes, but I can't get the wheel back on the axle." By the time Reverend Windes finished his explanation, two of the women had managed to drape themselves around Tom while a third stood behind him, running her hands through his hair. Chakotay found himself in similar condition and while both of his hands were occupied with removing one of the women who had attached herself to his right side, another woman had somehow managed to slip a hand through the front of his shirt to caress his chest.

"Hey!" "Hold on...." "What the...!" "No." "Stop!" " Reverend?" "Reverend!?!?!

"Ladies, ladies, ladies!," the Reverend Windes pleaded with the women. "This is neither the time, nor the place for such behavior! Please, control yourselves." The women rather reluctantly disengaged themselves from their activities, although not before one lovely young woman smacked Tom on the seat and gave him an inviting wink.

"I apologize, Chakotay, Tom," said the Reverend. "I am taking these ladies to Voyager City. You may have heard of my latest endeavor - The Voyager City Lamb of God Home and School for Wayward Women. These ladies have been forced, by painful circumstance, to live lives of ill repute. At the Voyager City Lamb of God Home and School for Wayward Women, they will learn valuable skills such as needlework and cooking so that they can live honest, God-fearing lives."

Tom and Chakotay exchanged skeptical looks as the ladies in question elbowed each other and giggled behind their hands. Under his breath Tom murmured to Chakotay, "I'll bet you next week's pay that by Saturday night every one of them women will be working the crowd at Quark's or Miss Maxine's place."

With 6 strong hands at work, the wagon's wheel was back in place in no time at all. Reverend Windes thanked Tom and Chakotay, hustled the women into the wagon and set out toward Voyager City. As the wagon pulled away, the women leaned out the back and waved good-bye to the two men. "Come and see us sometime, Sugar," shouted one. "Yes," called a second one, "We want to repay you for helping us out today."

Tom and Chakotay sighed with relief, wiped the sweat from their brows, and mounted their horses. As they continued on toward Line Cabin #1, Tom spoke. "I used to know a traveling salesman fellow. He once told me that the traveling salesman's rule was 'What happens on the road, stays on the road.'" "Ummm," Chakotay replied, "sounds like a good rule to me."

Well, they're not home yet, so I hope to continue, as time permits.