The Saga of Miles Forrest

It was good to finally be back home.  It was past midnight when the train pulled into the station due to delays along the way.  I was hoping it would be in on time for I was aching to see Molly and it would have been nice for her to greet me at the station.  It was very disappointing when I arrived at the cabin to find that she was not there.  I began to think all sorts of thoughts, then looked by the coffeepot and seeing a note picked it up.
    “Staying with Marta, will explain when I see you.”
    The next morning I rushed down to the restaurant.  Bursting through the door, I startled Marta making her jump.  “Senor Miles!  Don’t do that!” then she called down coming to me.  “It’s sure good to have you back.”
    Then the voice I was longing to hear sounded from the kitchen.  “Miles.”  We hurried toward each other meeting in about the center of the eating area.  She threw herself in my arms.  Lifting her I twirled her around a couple of times before letting her down.
    After giving her a kiss, I smiled and asked, “Did you happen to make a pie for my homecomin’?”
    “I have so much to tell you, and all you can ask for is pie.  Let’s go sit,” she admonished.
    Heading for the table, I checked the pot sitting on the stove.  Cold.  I looked over at Molly with a frown.  What I received for my efforts was the shaking of her head, but then a smile crossed her face.  “Marta, will you bring some coffee and pie out, please?”
    Molly was giving me the once over.  Her eyes moving over my body.  “You look tired,” she finally said.  “No injuries?”
    My hand went to the back of my neck.  “Just a little singe, but nothing else,” I responded.
    She pulled my collar back to examine the crease the bullet had made which was already scabbing over.  “Oh, Miles, another inch,” she stated and left it at that.
    I shrugged, “Molly, we’ve been through all of this.”
    A grim look came across her face, then she took a sip of coffee and put those thoughts behind it.  “Is Marshal Blasco all right?”
    “He’ll be fine,” I replied then proceeded to tell her about what happened in Raton.  
    She was shaking her head.  “So much evil out there,” she replied in almost a whisper.  She put her hand on my arm.  “I’m glad there are good men like you to counter it.”
    Marta came by with a coffee refill.  “Have you told him about McCall?”
    Looking over at Molly, I asked, “What about McCall?”
    She was hesitant in answering, so Marta piped up.  “Go ahead, tell him!”
    “Tell me what?  Molly?”
    “It seems as if our wondrous town marshal has started an extortion racket.  He wanted twenty-five dollars a month for insurance payment,” she informed me then dropped her head.
    I was getting ready to ask her more when Charlie Gold stepped through the doorway.  He walked to the table, reached out his hand to shake mine.
    “What’s this I hear about McCall?” I asked looking at him then back at Molly.
    Marta was getting flustered.  “Go ahead, Molly.  Tell him the rest.”
    She lifted her eyes to meet mine.  “I pulled a gun on him.  Miles, I would have shot him.”
    “What?  Why?” I stammered.
    “He said he would take my payment in kisses.”
    He threw up his hands.  “Honest, Miles, I didn’t know until last night.”
    I stood up, grabbed the Greener.  “Let’s go!”  Charlie fell in behind me as we headed up the street.  “Where might he be?”
    “Most likely Olson’s saloon.  It’s sort of like his second office.”
    “Back me, Charlie,” I ordered, then stopped before entering to take the shells out of the shotgun.  
    Entering the saloon, I saw the bartender behind the bar, then Olson sitting at a back table with another man which I presumed was McCall.  As I started for them Olson almost fell trying to get out of his chair.
    “Extortion is against the law, McCall,” I stated.  “So you’re under arrest.”
    “And you are?” he inquired moving his hand toward his gun.  I cocked the Greener.
    “Deputy U.S. Marshal Miles Forrest,” I barked.  “Let’s go.”
    A smirk appeared on his face which made me want to slap the barrel of the Greener across it.  “That’s not a federal offense, why don’t you allow the sheriff to handle it?” he asked, then the smirk widened.  “Oh, Forrest, don’t believe every thing your wife tells you.”
    “I requested permission from Sheriff Gold to personally take you in.”
    The smirk turned into a sneer.  “Big man with a cocked 12-gauge.”
    Releasing the hammer I threw it to Olson then kicked the table as hard as I could.  The table slid catching McCall in the chest flipping over and causing him to fall over backward.  Rushing to him, I stepped on his hand as it was reaching to pull his pistol hearing the bones crack.
    Then came the sound, two hammers being pulled back on the Greener. I recognized it easily having heard it enough…