Justice in a Lawless Land (Preview)

Chapter One


Kasey marched her way up the street toward the sheriff’s office. 

Outside, the night was silent save for the calling of an owl off in the distance, and the singing of crickets in the tall grass. The sound of her boots hitting the boardwalk added a rhythmic thump thump thump to the song of the night, but she paid no attention to that. 

Her mind was on other things. 

Mostly, she was angry. She’d worked hard over the past couple years to make her saloon a reputable place to be. That wasn’t easy for a saloon, let alone a saloon owned by a woman. But after her husband died and left her the place, Kasey had had one thing on her mind—and that was business. 

She missed her husband dearly. No one had expected things to go wrong when he had gone with some of their friends to harvest ice out of the lake for their icehouse. It had been late in the season, yes, but her husband had been certain there was still time to get one more haul before the ice was too thin. 

Unfortunately, he was wrong. 

The ice cracked beneath him, and not only did she lose her husband that frigid morning, but their horse, too. It was a blow that had left her reeling, but even at just nineteen at the time, she had been able to dig her heels in and move forward with life. 

That accident had taken place five years ago, and now, at twenty-four, she was a strong woman who knew what she wanted in life. And she didn’t take any lip from anyone. 

She had no interest in anything but making sure the place continued to grow and thrive. After her husband passed, she was able to mold the saloon into what she wanted it to be. There wouldn’t be any room for soiled doves in her establishment. She didn’t care how much business they brought into the place. 

The saloon girls who did work for her were restricted to being in the dining room of the saloon or back in the kitchen—certainly nowhere else. She wasn’t running a brothel, as she often said to the men who passed through town and asked how much it would be for one of the women to spend some personal time with them. 

Additionally, Kasey ensured her saloon wasn’t a place for fighting. Games were played and bets were made, but it wasn’t a place to draw your firearm if you lost your money over a hand of cards. You were welcome to drink your sorrows away, but if the alcohol made you too surly, you were expected to leave. 

Jester, her bartender, saw to that. He didn’t put up with any sort of riotous behavior in the saloon. He was a strong, stout man with thick black hair and a thick mustache, too. Kasey had never asked him his age, but she guessed he was in his forties or fifties, even. She had witnessed him throwing out men who had drank too much on more than one occasion. 

For the most part, it was an upstanding place to be. For a saloon, that is. She kept the doors open well into the night, and many of the people in town became regulars. Her saloon was recommended across the territory to those who were passing through, as well, and with good reason. 

“Sheriff! Sheriff Taylor! Wake up!” Kasey shouted at the window above the sheriff’s office. 

The sheriff had an apartment to himself above his office. This allowed him to keep an eye on the jail when there were prisoners, as well as made him openly available and easy to find when he was needed. And that tended to happen often in this small town. 

Sutton was known for its good people in general, but there were always those who liked to cause fights and throw their weight around when they could. The sheriff never found himself out of work for very long. 

“Sheriff Archie Taylor! Are you in there?” Kasey called out again, this time picking up a small pebble and throwing it up at the window. Being the no-nonsense kind of woman she was, along with her history of knowing how to handle herself, Kasey had good aim. 

The pebble bounced off the glass pane, and she followed the first one with three more. “I say, Sheriff, you’d best get up and get down here before I have to bring out the shotgun and take care of business myself.” 

The bottom of the window slid up, and Sheriff Archie poked his head out into the night. It was dark in his room, making it impossible for Kasey to detect any of his features. But of course, it was him—he lived alone in the apartment. She wasted no time in repeating herself. 

“What’s going on?” he called out.

“Get yourself down here and you’ll find out,” she replied before she turned on her heel and marched back in the direction of her saloon. She called over her shoulder, “I sent someone to fetch Barney, too. Hopefully it won’t take long.” 

Now that Archie was awake, she knew he would be ready and by her side within minutes. Barney was the sheriff’s deputy. He was loyal and meant well, though he was about ten years younger than the sheriff, who was young himself at barely thirty years old. 

Archie was a good sheriff, always at the ready whenever he was needed no matter what time it was. Day or night, she’d never known him to not be available, and she didn’t want to leave her saloon unsupervised for too long. Not with the trouble that was being caused there. 

Kasey would have handled things herself—in fact, she’d tried to reason with the men involved—but either they had had too much whiskey, or they simply didn’t care enough to show her the respect she required in her saloon. She wasn’t about to put up with them behaving that way, and she meant to have them thrown out. 

But with Jester out for the night, her only option at this point was to fetch the sheriff. 

She heard him running up the street behind her, but she didn’t slow her pace. There were places they had to be, and she’d explain on the way.

“Justice in a Lawless Land” is an Amazon Best-Selling novel, check it out here!

Archie Taylor thought he had seen it all until he became sheriff in the notorious town of Dry Creek. The town is rife with crime, and keeping the peace is a constant challenge. However, when the brother of a powerful ranch owner is mysteriously murdered in the jail cell, Archie realizes that he’s dealing with something more sinister than he’s ever encountered before.

What dark secrets will Archie uncover as he seeks to solve this complex case?

As the investigation unfolds, Archie discovers that there’s more to the murder than he originally thought. The deeper he digs, the more he realizes that corruption and deceit run rampant in the town. Archie must tread carefully, for the political landscape is a minefield, and the wrong move could ignite a powder keg…

Will Archie be able to uncover the truth and bring justice to Dry Creek, or will he fall victim to the treacherous political machinations of the town’s power players?

Along the way, Archie discovers that he has some unlikely allies in the town. With the help of a feisty saloon girl and a loyal deputy, the Sheriff must solve the mystery before it’s too late, and confront the true source of the town’s troubles. Will he be able to bring the killer to justice, or will the danger finally catch up to him? What sacrifices will Archie have to make to see justice served?

“Justice in a Lawless Land” is a historical adventure novel of approximately 60,000 words. No cliffhangers, only pure unadulterated action.

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