Six-Gun Gorilla -  - ebook

Six-Gun Gorilla ebook

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Six-Gun Gorilla is one of the most fun and exciting comics in recent years. This book is a fusion of past and present. The plot of this book is fascinating and unusual: the action takes place in the 22nd century. People who want to die will be sent to the war zone, and their death will be transmitted on screens as a reality show. But this time everything happens differently.

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Liczba stron: 402

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Contents

I. MASTERS DECIDES TO QUIT

II. O'NEIL'S VENGEANCE VOW

III. STRAWHAN'S TERRIBLE TRACKER

IV. THE STAMPEDE OF TERROR

V. O'NEIL TO THE RESCUE!

VI. SIX SINISTER STICKS

VII. TERROR ON THE ROOF

VIII. THE RED RAIDERS POUNCE

IX. CAUGHT IN THE DEATH COACH

X. SAFETY—IN JAIL!

XI. THE CORDON IS BROKEN

XII. THE ESCAPE FROM CRIPPLE CREEK

XIII. TUTT STRAWHAN'S BOAST

XIV. "STRING 'EM UP!"

XV. THE TERROR ON THE TRACK

XVI. STRAWHAN'S PEPPER PLOT

XVII. THE BATTLE IN THE STORE

XVIII. O'NEIL CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM

XIX. MURDER ON THE MOUNTAINSIDE

XX. PRISONERS OF THE MINERS

XXI. THE CAPTURE OF O'NEIL

XXII. MENACE IN THE MINESHAFT

XXIII. THE HORROR AT THE WINDLASS

XXIV. TREETOP VENGEANCE

XXV. O'NEIL'S STRANGE HOLDUP

XXVI. THE GOLD-COACH HOLDUP

XXVII. THE MYSTERIOUS STRANGLER

XXVIII. THE ATTACK ON THE MINE

XXIX. TUTT STRAWHAN SURRENDERS

XXX. THE SEARCH FOR THE SLAYER

XXXI. THE BLOCKADED MINE

XXXII. WILL THE TAR TRICK O'NEIL?

XXXIII. THE MAN WHO REFUSED TO BE RESCUED

XXXIV. THE LURE OF THE MUSIC

XXXV. TUTT STRAWHAN: HERO

XXXVI. THE MYSTERY RESCUER

XXXVII. THE SCALP THAT COULDN'T BE TAKEN

XXXVIII. MENACE IN THE WAGON

XXXIX. "KING OF THE PALEFACES"

XL. THE LIMPING PURSUER

XLI. THE BATTLE OF THE GIANTS

XLII. THE DAWN VISITOR

XLIII. O'NEIL GETS HIS MAN

XLIV. THE LIVING WALL OF DEATH

XLV. STRAWHAN'S LAST REFUGE

XLVI. O'NEIL FIRES HIS LAST SHOT

I. MASTERS DECIDES TO QUIT

Bart Masters threw down his pick with a grunt of relief. The sun had sunk so low in the sky that it was almost dark now at the bottom of the mineshaft.

Stretching his weary back, he muttered grimly–

“Gettin’ old, I reckon. Time I got out o’ this.”

It was not the first time lately that Bart Masters had thought of quitting the little gold mine in which he had worked for the past seven years. Sixty two years of age, bent and scarred by a lifetime of toil, if he was ever going to get any enjoyment from the gold which he had torn from the earth, he would soon have to head for more civilized parts.

He had all the gold he wanted, about ten thousand pounds worth, more than sufficient to set him up in comfort for the rest of his life.

In small leather sacks under the floor of his cabin this gold was hidden, stored ounce by ounce, grain by grain, as he had dug it from the ground. No one had ever worked harder than this lone miner in the Boulder Hills of Colorado.

Twice a year only did he visit the nearest township, for stores and clothing. For the rest of the year he stuck to his mine.

“I’ll get out tomorrow,” he said.

Dangling down the shaft from forty feet above was a stout rope, and on the end of this a large bucket. It had been used to haul hundreds of tons of earth and ore to the top. Now Bart Masters put one foot in it, gripped the rope above his head and bellowed, “Hoist her up, O’Neil!”

There was a clanking somewhere above and the rope began to be hauled in. Swiftly and steadily the bucket rose, almost as though it was attached to a winch.

In a few moments the head of the old miner came above the surface. He reached out to grasp a crosspiece and heaved himself to safety.

“Thanks, O’Neil!” he grunted.

He was not a bit surprised to see what had hauled him up. It was a gorilla, a tremendous creature, standing well over six feet high, with a vast sixty four inch chest, a shaggy red brown coat, and a face as hideous as a nightmare.

Standing astride the edge of the shaft, it had hauled the rope in hand over hand, and was now carefully coiling it for use on the morrow. It seemed to know exactly what was expected of it.

It was a strange place in which to find a gorilla. Gorillas came from Central Africa, and this was the wilds of Colorado, bit its surroundings did not seem to have affected its health. If ever there was a gorilla in the prime of condition, it was this one.

Turning, it came waddling towards its master, walking on its hind legs, its hands only occasionally touching the ground to steady it. Masters looked at it almost with affection, and handed over the leather poke in which he had packed that day’s find of gold.

“Here you are, O’Neil, this is the last,” he said. “Tomorrow we’re gettin’ out. What’ll you say to new surroundings, new faces, new food? I wonder how you’ll settle down in a town, or whether they’ll refuse to have you? Guess they’ll have to put up with you, pard, if I pay ‘em!”

The gorilla growled in its throat. It was almost as though it understood what was being said.

Bart Masters had got into the habit of talking to it. It had helped him forget his loneliness, and he had to admit that no human partner would ever have served him as well as O’Neil, the gorilla.

Eight years ago he had purchased the gorilla, then a youngster, from a sailor in San Francisco. The young animal had then just arrived from Africa, and was both frightened and fierce.

The sailor had been glad to get rid of it. The gorilla had no name, but at the sailor had been called O’Neil, the gold miner had called it that. O’Neil it had remained ever since, and in the course of time it had become utterly devoted to the miner.

Up on the Dragonfly Mine, which Bart Masters had discovered and worked alone, the gorilla had been as good as a hired laborer to him. To train it and make a companion of it had been his only amusement. Not only did it regularly haul the buckets to the top of the shaft, but he had taught it to dig with pick and shovel.

Nearby was the shack where they lived.

Built of logs, with a stovepipe chimney in one corner, it was no different from a hundred other shacks dotted about Colorado.

To Bart Masters it was home. Followed by the shuffling gorilla, he entered the building and stoked up the fire.

“More firewood, O’Neil!” he said, and the great beast shuffled away to a nearby woodpile, returning with a load of branches and logs.

Some of the pieces were too large for the stove. The gorilla broke these in two with its powerful hands, or split them by inserting its fingertips and wrenching them apart. Just how strong O’Neil was his owner had never found out.

“Well, tonight’s the last night!” said the old miner, as he mixed flour and water for flapjacks. “Tomorrow we head south. In three days we’ll be in Colorado Springs, an’ a new life will have begun. Reckon you’ll have to carry the gold for me. It’ll be mighty heavy.”

The gorilla snorted, and squatted down in a corner like an old, old man, its knuckles resting on the floor. It knew full well that its supper would be served as soon as its master’s.

Before long they were eating their meal, and as they munched away the miner kept up a running fire of comments. He told O’Neil all his plans, his hopes, his fears, and the gorilla sensed that something unusual was going to happen. It watched him with bright, affectionate eyes.

Supper over, Bart Masters dragged back the heavy log table, pried up three planks which had been underneath is, and revealed a hole under the shack. It was his safe.

From it he lifted bag after bag of gold. Each of them was packed to the brim with the gold dust and nuggets which he had extracted from the mine.

The gorilla seemed to have gone to sleep. It kept its eyes closed. Bart Masters ranged his hoard upon the table, and looked around for some means of bundling it all together.

He decided that a doubled blanket would make a good carrier. He stacked the gold bags on this, in readiness to be rolled up in the morning.

By that time it was quite dark, and he had lighted two candles.

“Time we hit the blankets, O’Neil!” he muttered, and went to the corner where the giant gorilla dozed.

It raised no objection when he fastened a stout leather collar round its neck. To the collar was attached a chain which was embedded in the corner beam of the hut.

There was plenty of slack to the chain. It did not prevent O’Neil from curling up and sleeping. Bart Masters scarcely knew why he continued to chain the gorilla up at night. It was a relic of the old days, when he had not been quite certain of the way the gorilla would behave during the night.

“Good night, O’Neil. Tomorrow night we’ll be in camp, an’ before long maybe I’ll be able to buy ya some real fruit,” he said, as he climbed into his bunk.

The last thing he did was to reach up and assure himself that his gunbelt hung on the usual nail above his head, with his heavy six-gun ready loaded.

Worn out with the toil of the day, he was soon asleep. The gorilla snored heavily. A clock ticked on a shelf in the corner.

The moon came through a haze of cloud. It was not very bright, but enough to throw a faint shadow on the window when someone approached outside.

Another shadow followed, then another, and yet a forth. Four men were creeping towards the door of the shack.

The faces of these men were twisted viciously as they strained their eyes for the slightest sound of movement within. All of them were obviously tough characters and each was armed with two guns.

“The old un’s asleep!” hissed one fellow with a drooping moustache. “Wonder what’s happened to the gorilla?”

“Sleeping as well, I guess,” murmured one of the others. “He chains it up at nights. I’ve seen him call it in.”

The men were not strangers to the locality. For more than a week they had spied on Bart Masters, observing his every movement, trying to judge whether he was worth robbing or not.

In other parts of Colorado they were known as the Strawhan Gang, and they were wanted by the law for a score of murders and robberies. The north of Colorado had proved too hot for them, and they had come south. It was unlucky for Bart Masters that they had stumbled upon his retreat, and had seen him washing out some gold dust one night.

To them the temptation was irresistible. This was the night on which they had decided to rob him.

Tutt Strawhan, the man with the red moustache, lifted the latch of the door softly. It was not fastened in any way. Bart Masters never believed in locking himself in at night.

Inch by inch the door opened, and the evil face of the leader of the gang peered round the edge.

The moon from the window shone upon the figure in the bunk. The old miner was twitching in his sleep.

In the further corner of the room a dark blur marked the position of the gorilla. It did not stir. Its sleep was not disturbed.

Tutt Strawhan lifted a finger to his lips to warn his men to keep quiet. Softly he tiptoed forward.

Halfway across the shack he was when O’Neil opened his eyes, blinked at the intruder and lurched to his feet with a roar.

Crack-crack!

Strawhan had the name of being one of the quickest shots in the West. He wasted no time in firing twice at the infuriated gorilla. Even before it had come to the end of its chain one of the bullets had caught it on the head, and spun it round.

It collapsed on the floor, and lay still.

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