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Welcome to Purgatory

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APRIL, 1887 - "Whoa, Smoke," Daniel Thorn said, pulling gently on the reigns.  He gazed out on the land before him.  This part of Arizona wasn't all sandy desert, but there still wasn't much.  A mud hole of a river snaked across the rocky sand, dotted with a few shrubs and gnarled trees on the banks.  Mountains and smooth buttes were visible on the horizon in the orange morning sun.  And a mile down the creek was a town, as dusty and rugged as the Mojave Desert.  It wasn't a big town, but it was larger than some of the ghosted boom towns Thorn had seen before.  It looked unremarkable, all in all.  But there was something to interest Daniel: a job.  Thorn spurred his gray-haired mare onward.

The swing doors of Gaver's Cantina creaked open and in walked a tall man with a gray hat.  The bar, the largest in town, was sparsely populated, not unusual for being early as it was.  Only Jim Dillard sat at the counter, a glass of cheap whiskey in his hand.  Tom Gaver sat behind the counter cleaning glasses.  The tall man's spurs clinked against the roughshod wooden floor as he walked.  He pulled up a stool to Jim's right.  Jim hardly noticed, concerned mostly with his drink.  "Water," the man said hoarsely.  Tom nodded and went to a barrel.  Jim turned.
"Ain't seen you before," Jim said as friendly as he could.
The man nodded.  "First time here."  Jim looked him over.  The butt of a pistol was visible on his right side, and what looked like a shotgun was slung in a pouch on his back.  Tom placed a glass of brown water before him.  The man picked it up with a gloved hand and tossed it back like a shot.
Jim raised his glass to his lips.  "And what brings you to Purgatory, Mister..."
"Thorn," he rasped.  "Dan Thorn.  And I'm here for you."
Jim paused and lowered his glass.  "'Scuse me?"
Thorn turned.  "You Jim Dillard, right?"  Jim gave a short nod.  There was no sense in denying it; the man clearly knew who he was.  "You're wanted in Texas for murder.  I'm gonna bring you in."
Jim's eyes narrowed.  "Now hold on," he said, trying to stay calm.  "Maybe we can work somethin' out.  I got plenty o' money here."
Thorn shook his head.  "Your bounty's higher anything you got.  Fact, you'd be dead right now if you wasn't worth more alive than not."
Jim opened his mouth to reply, but was cut short by the sound of the door opening again.  Four men entered, laughing among themselves.  One of the spotted Jim, pointed to him, and the four headed over.  One of them, a broad-shouldered rough with a long moustache, leaned on Jim's chair.  "Mornin', Jim," the man said loudly, flashing a yellowed smile.  He took Jim's whiskey and tossed it back, slamming the empty glass on the counter.  "What's new?"
Jim gave a relieved sigh.  "Isaac, am I glad to see you," he said, letting out a laugh.  "This dude here says he's gonna take me back to Texas."
Isaac Wheeler's thick eyebrows shot up.  "Is that right?  Who is this guy, anyway?"
"Says his name's Dan Thorn."  Tom Gaver watched them carefully, standing at the other end of the counter.
Isaac leaned over toward Thorn.  "So," his lips turned in a cruel lopsided grin, "You wanna bring my friend Jim here back to Texas?  Why's that?"
Thorn didn't bother to turn to face him.  "He killed three men in Amarillo.  Governor wants him back for a hangin'."
Wheeler leaned back, his expression shifting to a caracitured confusion.  "Three men?  Why he just killed two Chinee and a Mexican.  Ain't right callin' 'em men."  His comrades chuckled.
Thorn didn't.  He turned and faced Wheeler.  "I don't much care for the legalities of it," he said.  "But I do intended to bring Jim Dillard in."
Jim shifted uncomfortably in his seat, sweat condensing on his brow.  Wheeler took a step back, a low laugh coming from his throat.  "Well I have a problem with that, Mr. Thorn," he said lightly.  "Jim here's a friend o' mine.  The thought of him away from Purgatory - well, it brings a tear to my eye."  His cronies laughed again.  Thorn's hand slowly reached for his iron.  Wheeler's, however, already had it drawn.  He cocked back the hammer on the Colt.  "So I suggest you drop the matter."
"N-now hold on, boys," a voice stammered.  Tom Gaver stepped cautiously toward them, his hands held piously in the air.  "I don't want no trouble in my bar."
Wheeler snorted, his grin widening.  "Oh, ain't gonna be no trouble, Mr. Gaver.  Unless Dan Thorn here makes some."
"Well, now, way I sees it, trouble's a two way street," Tom said shakily.  "An' I know you and your boys seem to find trouble right frequently.  Now my cook Josephus has a Winchester rifle trained on your head right now, an' I gotta tell ya," he said with a chuckle, "he a d**ned good shot, too.  Ain't that right, Joe?"
From the kitchen window behind the counter, a black man stood with rifle aimed squarely at Isaac Wheeler.  "Oh, yessuh, they teach you to shoot real good in the Army," he said evenly.
"Well that's right, Joe was in the Army," Tom nodded.  "S-so why don't we just put up them irons and keep trouble outta my bar?"
Wheeler froze, his eyes moving from Tom to Joe to Thorn.  Jim felt a jab in his side.  Thorn's own Smith & Wesson was pressed against his ribs.  Thorn's gaze stayed on Wheeler.  "I thought you said I was worth more alive than dead," Jim whispered hoarsely.
"Not by much," Thorn replied, staring unblinkingly at Wheeler.  Slowly, the aggressor lowered his pistol.  Dan slowly pulled his gun out of Dillard's side, and Josephus dropped the rifle from his trained eye, though it was still pointed in their direction.
Wheeler snorted.  "Like I said, Tom, no trouble."  He jerked his head toward the door.  "C'mon, boys, we gotta better things to do."  His cronies, along with Jim, sauntered toward the door.  Wheeler followed behind them, but stopped in the doorway.  "Oh, and Thorn?" he said.  "You better get your hide outta this town."  With that, he exited.
Dan sighed.  He turned to Tom.  "Thanks," he said simply.
Tom eyed him.  "Everybody gets one," he muttered.  He nodded to Joe, who lowered the rifle and disappeared back into the recesses of the kitchen.
Dan Thorn finished off the rest of his water.  Maybe Purgatory had more in store than he thought.

[OOC: Please post in the starter thread before posting here.  The starter thread can be found here.  I'll respond to make sure your character fits in the setting, then you can go nuts.  Thank ye kindly. :D]

There was a man hidden in the shadows that had watched this whole spectacle.

John Aicrin was a lonely man. His parents were alchoholics so he was on the streets at about 13 because his they kicked him out. His parents weren't really parents any way, they just gave birth to him and kept on partyin' leaving John to fend for himself all his life. He never ate much and drank occasionally because his parents never fed him so he learned to go without food for very long. John took great interest in this stranger because rarely anybody came to Purgatory.

He walked up to the bar and said to the man "A bounty hunter eh'. Well it's about time we got a law inforcer in this town, even if he's a temporary one. This place is filled with crooks." John paused, "So your lookin' for Jim Dillard huh? Well if the stories I've heard about him are true, that scum deserves to be hung...... I can ya' help find im' if ya' want, I know every section of this town by heart and it just so happens that I know where he and his buddies like to hang out besides this place." John stopped and waited for a comment.

OOC: I hope you don't mind me jumping in Dozus.

[I don't mind at all, but please post a character in my starter thread first.  Thanks. :)]

OOC: Oops, sorry!

sign outside the Hot-As-Hell Saloon:

"Men wanted! Good pay! Free food! Get famous! Must be willing to travel long distances. Those interested, should ask Fat Joe for Colonel Samagriolla or his assistant, Jacopo. Drunks, excessive womanizers, and criminals need not apply!"

"Be a part of an exciting expedition, into the great unknown! None other than Colonel Salvatore Samagriolla, the world-famous explorer of darkest Africa and exotic India, beckons you to join his western crusade!"

some graffiti below that sign:

"No drunks, womanizers, or criminals? Aint no one left then Mister Sal Magrilla"


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