Frank pointed to the bloodied lance and the brain covered balistice on the ground. “I’ve even brought you a horse.”

Gregson noticed Charlie’s girlfriend standing in the bushes for the first time.

“A fight to the death? To what end?” Gregson asked.

“Well… I can’t let you tell anyone about the murders, and it wouldn’t be good sport just to do you with this revolver.” Gregson noticed it for the first time. It poked out of Frank’s pocket with intent. “You’d better drop your gun in the grave. We can’t have modern weapons spoiling our honor.”

Gregson did as he was told.

“So, what weapon will it be?” Frank asked.

Gregson had pitched for the police softball team, so he reached for the balistice. Frank grabbed the lance. “I’ll meet you on the field of battle in 10 minutes and don’t try anything funny.”

Gregson laughed. He finally had memoires to write about.

Riding with a lance poking into your back can make a man uneasy and Tulip sensed Gregson’s dismay. They were nearing the main courtyard and his mind was racing. Should I just bolt for it? But he’d shoot me. And something deeper was stirring within him. It was a sense of honor. If he fought to the death and won, he could retire into his memoires, knowing that courage survived when heroes stayed alive.

“Ride to the first murder and stop!” Frank shouted.

And Gregson rode slowly to the first crime scene, thinking quickly. He had a plan.

“When I fire my revolver, we joist!”


On instinct, Tulip charged towards Charlie. Frank lowered his lance and Gregson swung his balistice.


Gregson landed on the ground, seeing stars. But he wasn’t knocked out and he wasn’t dead. He was looking at Orion until he saw a revolver pointed at his chest.

“Just to be sure!” Frank said. And he fired three bullets into him. He walked back to his horse, but before he got there, something peculiar happened. He heard whirring behind him, and three balls wrapped around his neck. It was lights out!

“Good shot!” A park officer cheered, “but how are you alive?”

Gregson examined the splintered wood in his chest and the three bullets that had burned through his shirt. He pulled a thick book from his coat and showed it to the officer.

Rituals and Reign?”

“Magic comes in handy if you know how to use it,” Gregson said.

4 thoughts on “Chapter 7 The Duel

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