Read The Sapphire Gun Online

Authors: J. R. Roberts

The Sapphire Gun

Table of Contents
 
 
One Winner
The Spaniard snapped his hand toward his holster and pulled the .44. Clint's arm moved in a similar flicker of motion as his hand wrapped around his modified Colt.
Both weapons cleared leather at the same time, but Clint was able to aim and pull his trigger before Franco's hammer could drop. The Colt barked once and sent a bullet through Franco's heart. The .44 roared as well but only after a twitching reflex of Franco's finger.
The Spaniard had a surprised look on his face as the fire in his eyes slowly dwindled away . . . and Franco's body landed facedown in the dirt.
DON'T MISS THESE ALL-ACTION WESTERN SERIES FROM THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
THE GUNSMITH by J. R. Roberts
Clint Adams was a legend among lawmen, outlaws, and ladies. They called him . . . the Gunsmith.
 
LONGARM by Tabor Evans
The popular long-running series about Deputy U.S. Marshal Long—his life, his loves, his fight for justice.
 
SLOCUM by Jake Logan
Today's longest-running action Western. John Slocum rides a deadly trail of hot blood and cold steel.
 
BUSHWHACKERS by B. J. Lanagan
An action-packed series by the creators of Longarm! The rousing adventures of the most brutal gang of cutthroats ever assembled—Quantrill's Raiders.
 
DIAMONDBACK by Guy Brewer
Dex Yancey is Diamondback, a Southern gentleman turned con man when his brother cheats him out of the family fortune. Ladies love him. Gamblers hate him. But nobody pulls one over on Dex . . .
 
WILDGUN by Jack Hanson
The blazing adventures of mountain man Will Barlow—from the creators of Longarm!
 
TEXAS TRACKER by Tom Calhoun
Meet J.T. Law: the most relentless—and dangerous—man-hunter in all Texas. Where sheriffs and posses fail, he's the best man to bring in the most vicious outlaws—for a price.
THE BERKLEY PUBLISHING GROUP
Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, USA
Penguin Group (Canada), 90 Eglinton Avenue East, Suite 700, Toronto, Ontario M4P 2Y3, Canada
(a division of Pearson Penguin Canada Inc.)
Penguin Books Ltd., 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
Penguin Group Ireland, 25 St. Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, Ireland (a division of Penguin Books Ltd.)
Penguin Group (Australia), 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia
(a division of Pearson Australia Group Pty. Ltd.)
Penguin Books India Pvt. Ltd., 11 Community Centre, Panchsheel Park, New Delhi—110 017, India
Penguin Group (NZ), 67 Apollo Drive, Mairangi Bay, Auckland 1311, New Zealand
(a division of Pearson New Zealand Ltd.)
Penguin Books (South Africa) (Pty.) Ltd., 24 Sturdee Avenue, Rosebank, Johannesburg 2196,
South Africa
 
Penguin Books Ltd., Registered Offices: 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England
 
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
 
THE SAPPHIRE GUN
 
A Jove Book / published by arrangement with the author
 
PRINTING HISTORY
Jove edition / May 2007
 
Copyright © 2007 by Robert J. Randisi.
 
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form
without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in
violation of the author's rights. Purchase only authorized editions.
For information, address: The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.
eISBN : 978-0-515-14301-0
 
JOVE®
Jove Books are published by The Berkley Publishing Group,
a division of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.,
375 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014.
JOVE is a registered trademark of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
The “J” design is a trademark belonging to Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
 
 

http://us.penguingroup.com

ONE
Johnny Blevin's place wasn't much, but it was comfortable and it was nestled on a fine piece of California property. He was a short ride from the mountains, the ocean, or even Mexico. That made it easy for him to spread word to plenty of friends about the party he meant to throw to celebrate a recent bout of good fortune.
Word of the party spread like wildfire. It spread so quickly, in fact, that the number of people to show up was actually more than double the number of people he'd invited. Johnny took the additional arrivals in stride. Of course, that was easy to do since most of the uninvited guests brought food or drink along with them.
It had been a while since the town had seen a celebration that big. If Johnny had to put up with a few strangers to be the host, then so be it. He was just happy that one guest in particular could make it.
“Someone get a beer for my friend, here!” Johnny shouted as he spotted another new arrival and rushed over to greet him. Johnny was a short man with enough extra weight around his middle to make him look almost perfectly cylindrical. His wiry dark hair and protruding front teeth made him look like an overgrown beaver. At the moment, he looked like a very happy beaver.
Clint smirked and extended a hand to the approaching man. Johnny brushed right past that arm so he could wrap both of his around Clint in a brotherly hug. Clint couldn't help but laugh as he felt himself get nearly lifted off his feet.
“Good to see you, too, Johnny,” Clint said. Even though he didn't know most of the people at the party, Clint quickly became uncomfortable as more and more of them stared in his direction. “All right. That's enough.”
“Sorry about that,” Johnny said. “I'm just glad to see you made it.”
“Doesn't look like attendance is much of a problem for this event.”
Turning to take in the scene, Johnny nodded as if he were seeing it for the first time.
The property was five acres of mostly flat grassland, bordered on three sides by steep hills. A small, three-room house was in the middle of those three acres and was surrounded by a crooked wooden fence. A wandering trickle of a stream snaked its way behind the house and a small barn was situated nearby.
Just looking at the land by itself, a man could imagine quiet sunrises or even the beginnings of a modest farm. Some pigs could be raised on the property. Maybe a few cows or sheep could be penned in. There was definitely room for horses. Currently, however, there was barely enough room for Johnny and Clint.
Four tables were pushed together to form a single row. On those tables, there was a collection of all the food and drink that had been brought to the party. A few men played loudly upon banjos and guitars, and one of them even beat a rhythm upon an upended bucket. Some folks were dancing. Some were playing games. Here and there, some were fighting. All of them appeared to be having the time of their lives.
“I guess things did get a bit out of hand.” Johnny sighed.
“How long has this been going on?” Clint asked. “The letter I got said this was all to start on Sunday. I thought I was going to miss it.”
“It did start on Sunday. It's been going steady ever since.”
“For three days?” Clint let out a whistle. “You might have a hell of time getting these folks to leave.”
Although Johnny winced, he quickly waved it off and said, “To hell with it. I may just hand all of this over to 'em when I leave.”
“You're leaving? The last time I checked, you were settling in for good after getting that shipping business up and running.”
“And I've still got you to thank for that, Clint,” Johnny said as he draped one arm over Clint's shoulder and squeezed. Every breath he let out smelled as if it had been soaked in liquor. “Hey, everyone!” Johnny shouted. “This here's the man who made me the man I am today!”
Although a few of the revelers looked over in Johnny's direction, none of them seemed to be as happy as he was about Clint's arrival. In fact, one of them shouted back, “Who the hell are you two?”
Clint patted Johnny's back. “How about you just point me to something I can eat?”
“Right over this way,” Johnny replied. “I'll show you.”
“Have you been drinking this whole time? You smell like whiskey.”
“Not really. I had a bit, but most of what you smell is what was spilled on me.”
The more times Clint was bumped and jostled by drunks, the more he regretted riding in from the coast to put in an appearance at Johnny's shindig. Once he saw all the food on the table, however, his good spirits quickly returned. Grabbing a plate and piling some food onto it, Clint asked, “So what's the reason behind this feast?”
“Didn't I put it in the letter?”
“Nope. All you said was that you wanted me to get here and that you'd tell me about it when I arrived.”
Johnny squinted as he thought back to writing the letter he'd sent to Clint. Once that became too difficult, he shook his head and let out a breath. “I thought I wrote it all out.” Suddenly, Johnny snapped his fingers. “I remember now! I wrote all of it in the letter I sent to West Texas! Rick Hartman wrote back to me, and I was just barely able to scribble something out and send it to where he thought you'd be. Now that I think about it, I'm even more surprised you made it here at all.”
“Jesus, how long have you been planning this affair?”
“Ever since I heard the news.”
“What news?”
Johnny straightened up, lifted his chin, and held onto his lapel as if he was posing for a painter. “The news that I'm gonna be so rich that I won't have to work another day in my life.”
TWO
At first, Clint thought it was just the liquor in Johnny's system talking. But after studying the other man for a few moments, he saw that Johnny wasn't so unsteady that he should be written off just yet. In fact, Johnny looked more proud than delirious.

Other books

Shooting On the Strip by Selena Cooper
A Mile in My Flip-Flops by Melody Carlson
Game by Walter Dean Myers
Questions for a Soldier by Scalzi, John
PS02 - Without Regret by R.L. Mathewson
Justice by Gillian Zane
Georgia by Dawn Tripp
Dear Rival by Robin White


readsbookonline.com Copyright 2016 - 2021