This was a momentous session. It started when Zeke Houston found a half-dead hobo on the border of his farmland. He'd been lassoed and dragged near death. He recovered, however, and it turned out that he wasn't actually just a drifter; he was the son of the second-biggest cattle baron of Oklahoma. A couple of former Pinkertons had come down to Dodge looking for him. And when the young man didn't want to press charges, the PCs started getting the idea that he was planning to use his dad's men to exact his own revenge on the ranchers of the Square-Q, who had done this to him.
Meanwhile, Miller was struggling to keep up with married life now that he was newly-wed to Doris (formerly the Widow McKnee). It started to become obvious how the sexagenarian had outlived her last four husbands! While she was looking younger and more vibrant by the day, Miller was looking more worn and tired and haggard. The PCs were starting to suspect she might be a vampire-succubus.
Kid Taylor's sister Lily had been dating Ed Masterson, the mild-mannered brother of Bat Masterson.
But this was not proceeding fast enough for Lily, and definitely not fast enough for Kid Taylor, who was trying to manage the fine line between not inviting Ed to stain his sister's honor and desperately trying to hurry him up into marrying her to get her off his back. Kid was busy with his nascent dental practice, and he'd come up with a sideline: he told Dirty Dave Rudabaugh to spread the word that he was also available for doctor's services- "no questions asked" - to anyone who wanted to avoid seeing Doc Baker, for reasons of avoiding the law.
Then all kinds of hell broke loose. Through some convoluted events, Kid Taylor ended up implying something to Mrs. Miller about Cooter, the sheriff's jailor. He suggested Cooter had insulted her honor (this wasn't true, Taylor was saying it to try to get out of another lie he'd told). Mrs. Miller was of course incensed at Cooter, and ran off in search of her husband, who'd taken to hiding away from her just to get some sleep. Deputy Young told her that he was probably sleeping in the stables with his horse, Brimstone. And indeed he was.
She ran into the stables, gesticulating and speaking loudly while Miller was asleep, and Brimstone kicked her in the head, killing her instantly.
Everyone was utterly stunned by this totally unexpected tragedy, from a crazy turn of events. Miller was in shock. He'd never actually wanted to marry Doris (though he didn't really want her dead), but he had another big fear: Doris Miller (formerly McKnee, formerly Williamson, formerly Diaz, formerly Jackson, originally Holliday) was the aunt of the deadliest gunfighter in the world: John Henry "Doc" Holliday. Miller figured that the second Doc Holliday found out, Miller might end up with a bullet in his chest. Mind you, Holliday isn't in Dodge, and who knows how long it might be before he even hears of his aunt's death.
Meanwhile the townsfolk thought Brimstone was a public menace and were literally threatening to go to the stables with torches and pitchforks to kill Miller's beloved horse. Miller asked the only man he knew besides himself that could ride Brimstone: the sociopathic John Joshua Webb. He asked Webb to take Brimstone, and to find some other horse and fake Brimstone's death. The telegraph operator, Martin, was there, and agreed to help.
They couldn't just buy a sacrificial horse in Dodge, so Martin suggested that they try to steal one from the Square-Q, which Martin was heading toward to warn them about the Pinkertons.
Webb agreed, and the two set off there, but as usual with Webb, things escalated. While Martin talked to the ranchers, Webb stole a horse, set fire to the stables and to the cowhand's barracks. 7 men and a dozen horses died in the fire.
Luckily for Martin, none of the Square-Q men knew Webb was with him (or there at all). But of course, they're likely to suspect he had something to do with it, seeing as it all happened while he was there.
Just when everyone thought the action was over, on a drizzly night the next evening, Ed Masterson was shot dead by a pair of Texans he'd been trying to arrest for messing up the Fort Bar. Bat Masterson was nearby and shot one of the two Texans dead, injuring the other, but he fled.
He fled right to Kid Taylor's office, since he'd been told Taylor did under-the-table medical work, no questions asked. Of course, Kid Taylor wanted nothing to do with a situation this hot, and the Texan had just killed his sister's beau. He tried to turn him away, but the Texan drew a gun on him. Kid Taylor drew back, and shot first, and blew half the Texan's brain out. As usual, he made up a lie to cover the reason why the Texan came to his dental office and not the doc's medical office in the first place.
Currently Smoking: Neerup Cutty + C&D's Crowley's Best