Moonshiner's Gold

Smith's Sharks 12/4/13

Our story begins in the Panhandle of Texas circa 1926, and our main character is Riley McDaniels. Riley's father has just passed away and during the funeral Riley's mother noticed that her father was missing. She asked Riley to go into town and find him. When Riley went to one of the bars he saw his Grampy and started to walk up to him. Riley's Grandfather's name is Abner Dawson. Grampy was sitting at a table playing the fiddle when his friend noticed Riley coming in and asked "Shouldn't you be going to the funeral?" Abner said "Oh I forgot" and hoped up and went running out. He ran right into Riley and said "Your mother must be mad at me!" Riley agreed and they ran to the funeral. The next day while Riley was in school he noticed a wagon driven by some men going into the canyon. He wondered if they were the Texas Rangers or some bootleggers which were becoming common in those parts. During recess Riley got into trouble and was made to go and clean out the coal stove. During this cleaning session he found some gold coins hidden in the stove. (We find out later that one of the men hid some of the coins at the school for safe keeping.) Riley, being a curious kid, took one of the coins to show to his Grampy. After school Riley and his brother Coy went to the canyon and saw smoke coming out of it. They went to investigate and came across some moonshiners working on their still. One of the bootleggers noticed the boys and pulled a gun on them and told them to "Come out with your hands up!" They boys did as they were told. One of the moonshiners was named Charlie and the other was named Red. Red was the meanest of the two. He was the one who pulled the gun out on the boys. He wanted to get a knife and cut their ears off. While he was looking Charlie told the boys to run as fast as they could. Charlie was really trying to help them. The boys went straight home and told their Grampy about the moonshiners and about the gold coin Riley had found. Later that night there was a knock at the door. It was the police. They had an eviction notice for the family. Grampy took the letter and read that his sister Mattie Sparrow was the one who was evicting them. The next morning the family decided to go to see Mattie and ask for more time. When they got to her home they tried to explain to Mattie that the ranch was their home and they loved living there. She explained that her husband had recently died and she was not able to pay for her home and the ranch and so she must sell it. Grampy told Mattie about the bootleggers on her property and she asked could they help get them off. They family traveled back to the ranch so Grampy could have a talk with those men. Riley followed his Grampy to the canyon and was told he could stay as long as he hid way up high in the canyon. Riley said ok and brought alone his binoculars. Grampy went into the canyon and found two of the men. Riley saw Red but didn't recognize the other man. Grampy later said the mans name was Constable McGregor. He said he was the leading of the gang. Grampy asked to speak to Charlie thinking he would be better to talk to. McGregor said that Charlie was gone and that he was in charge. Grampy explained that they were not welcome on his sister's land and they must leave. McGregor laughed and pulled out his rifle and told Grampy that he better leave and take his family with him or he would kill them all. Grampy left as the man instructed. He gathered his family and went into town where they would be safe. While in town they met a shop keeper named Aaron. He overheard Grampy talking about McGregor and told him that he know of the man and they he was real bad. Aaron showed the family where the local motel was and helped them get a room for the night. The next day Riley and Grampy were out walking and were told by some of the towns folk that Aaron had been kidnapped. As they walked along the street they saw a secret jail called The Oasis. Riley recognized the men that were in the jail. It was Charlie and Aaron. They helped them escape and Charlie explained that he was undercover with the Texas Rangers and they were getting ready to bust Red and McGregor. They all went to Mattie's house to re group and decide what to do. McGregor saw them go and followed them. As the men were talking McGregor busted in the door. He grabbed Aaron. Mattie who was in bed saw what was happening and pulled out her shotgun and pointed at McGregor. He let Aaron go and Charlie tied him up. They then went to the canyon to capture Red. Charlie had contacted the Texas Rangers and they met them at the Canyon. Charlie was so impressed with Riley's bravery that he gave him a $2500.00 reward. Now they had enough money to help Mattie and to stay at the ranch.

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