Canyon Diablo

Townswoman Heroically Saves Doctor from Rabid Animal

by Sarah Levine


It is the unfortunate duty of this paper to inform the town of our loss of its folk from time to time, and it is with sorrow that we have to report the death of Mary Jane Breen, companion of Doctor Hollowell, and general pleasant woman around town.

She was faced by a rapid wolf that had somehow slipped into town, and valiantly protected her beloved from the foul creature. Her cries roused the suspicion of dauntless Sheriff William Brandford and his stalwart posse. A rough and tumble altercation occured inside of the doctor's office with shotgun and pistol fire, and in the end Miss Breen's wounds were too grevious to live.

The wolf, affected by some manner of rabies-related contagion, was put down and subsequently burned to prevent the spread of the disease. Unfortunately, Ms. Breen's body also had to be swiftly engulfed for the good of the town. While this was against the family and Freedom Patterson's wishes, Mayor Sheridan was quick to back up Sheriff Brandford's assertion that the safety of the town was paramount. 

Services for the late Miss Breen will be held this Sunday, and offerings of solace can be brought to Doctor Hollowell's office on the Turn.

Parties in the Streets as Sheriff Disappears Mysteriously!

Parties in the Streets as Sheriff Disappears Mysteriously!
by Sarah Levine
No one much paid attention to the train from the North that arrived a month ago, though it carried one of Canyon Diablo's new law dogs – Marshal Randal Brandford, arrived from Massachusetts. The recently arrived Marshal took to the streets, collecting up deputies Morgan Welch and Jack Allen, and going to face the Sheriff von Kraag himself.

Warrantless, Marshal Brandford waited an acceptable time to speak with the sheriff, who did not emerge to either terrorize school children or dispense with the law, until he could suffer the German hermit's hiding no longer. With a stiff upper lip, Marshal Brandford boldly entered the home – braving the traps and the stink of Teutonic cooking alike – to find it deserted. Suffering only the lightest of wounds, Marshal Brandford heroically proclaimed that the old sheriff, iron-fist von Kraag, had skipped town, and for the affront of leaving the home booby trapped, and worse, his dereliction of duty in not keeping the town safe (thanks to tireless deputies Malin LeBeau, Jack Allen, and Morgan Welch for our shelter), the bold Marshal set a price of $300!

Immediately, a chord of celebration rang through the town as children knew it was safe to go out and play once more without fearing the old sheriff's tyranny, and virtuous men and women alike could once again go out without getting a staredown for trying to earn a living, or fearing the spray of the grey haired malefactor's gatling weaponry as he "dispensed justice." From Track Street to the Turn, the town’s jubilance could not be contained – one dance celebrating von Kraag's retirement party, the next celebrating the handsome new face of law in Canyon Diablo!

Among the partiers, deputy Malin LeBeau was handing out drinks, and boldly promised to buy von Kraag's abandoned home and all within it for a princely sum – no small amount fleeced from the lesser cardsharps that often visit our fair town – all to go to the Hass family's rebuilding of their livery which had been terrorized many a time by the former sheriff. When asked about the changing face of law in Canyon Diablo, deputy LeBeau praised Marshal Brandford's bold stance, though he admitted, "with le sheriff nouveau, no one knows if he will do le travail dangereux alone, or hire his own deputies. All I can say is that we are all in for quite a bit of change, pour le better!"

What the End of the Terrors of von Kraag Really Means for Canyon Diablo
What the End of the Terrors of von Kraag Really Means for Canyon Diablo
By Jonah Blackwell

By the time this goes to press, the parties will have ended, and the hangover will have set in – just what does von Kraag’s sudden disappearance mean for our fair city? 

While a change in law enforcement is a welcome variation, we cannot forget that while von Kraag was heavy-handed in his dispensation of justice, he did bring quite a bit of foreign funds and innovation. From the ice cream parlor to the gas lights, from the advanced machines in the rail yards to the increased security measures of the jail, and from the telegraph lines and machines to the printing presses that this very issue and those before it were printed on, we cannot forget that von Kraag left a more positive mark on this town than we’d remember in recent history. His absence will be keenly felt whenever this town reaches for innovation.

In addition, despite his dementia, von Kraag was one of the best chances this town had for being a real gateway by finishing the bridge across the Colorado river. With his sudden disappearance, we are a vessel tossed and turned about in a storm with no rudder to guide us. While I have heard of a new engineer by the name of Cave Johnson in our fair town, reports of progress have been too few and far between. Instead, Mr. Johnson has been cited wandering away from town, and some rumors have gone so far to reach my ears that Mr. Johnson has been spending time spelunking – time that could be spent building bridges to a more profitable future for all of us!

Moreover, all of von Kraag's assets being seized by the local government means that Mayor Sheridan has a lot of property on his hands and, I daresay not the manpower to properly keep it running nor the know how to properly invest in it. This is a time of upheaval, and we’ll be watching the Mayor’s office to see if Sheridan knows when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em.


Sheriff Driven From Town Amid Disaster!

Deputee Jack Allen lies convalescing, and Deputees Morgan Welch and Malin Lebeau have left town on another investigation, all the while the child murderer of Canyon Diablo still roams the streets. And at such a dangerous time when Sheriff von Kraag's manpower is at its lowest, the mayor is calling him out of town on what the doctor calls a special investigation.

While this paper recognizes the power of the mayor as an elected official, is Thomas Sheridan turning the well respected (and downright deadly!) Sheriff von Kraag into a toothless tiger? Days have gone by since Black Bart was broken out of jail, and even more since the bodies of Guillermo Elias and Carlo Corta were both found in deputee Daniel West's home. While it is understandable that sending Sheriff Von Kraag and Deputee West out of town on assignment may lure the killer that has been preying about the young of Canyon Diablo, but with the rest of his force either on seperate investigations or incapacitated, how can the mayor think now is a good time to leave the town defenseless?

Then again, our fair town may not be as defenseless as it may seem. The new Catholic father de Falco has been seen walking about town with a pair of gatling pistols which make Sheriff von Kraag green with envy. Father Patterson's calming influence has all but shut down the usual violence on sin alley. And quiet widow Maria Bolet has been seen with Sheriff von Kraag and his deputees, dressed like a daring heroine from a dime novel. Whether they've been working together or not, the town's been more peaceful in the past few days than it has been in years.

Still – is that enough to stop another attack by the Cannon Peak gang?

Respects can be paid to the convalescing Jack Allen at the von Kraag residence, upper First Street.

Hoosegow Blast Frees Black Bart
Bandit rides away under hail of gunfire

In a daring Sunday morning raid, a dozen members of the Cannon Peak gang broke into the Canyon Diablo jailhouse and freed Mr. Bartholomew McClusky who was being imprisoned there. Taking advantage of the quiet streets, gang members set and exploded dynamite destroying a wall of the jail, allowing the bandit to escape. They then fled on horseback.

The sound of the blast alerted Doktor Sheriff Reinhardt von Kraag and his deputies, who gave chase. The Sheriff himself was seen commandeering a wagon and horses from Canyon Diablo Livery and Stable owner Mr. Jethro Haas in front of a crowd of the faithful leaving Pastor Freedom Patterson’s revival. The wagon, carrying the Sheriff and accused murderer Pastor Daniel West, appeared to veer out of control soon after, threatening the local ice cream parlor. The heroic efforts of Mr. Jack Allen brought the wagon under control. They joined deputies Mr. Morgan Welch and Mr. Malin LeBeau who were already pursuing the bandits on horseback.

An intense gunfight ensued near the jail, leaving one deputy seriously wounded and killing several gang members. One witness described the sounds “like a giant tearing canvas and chain lightning all rolled up with a war.” Mr. McClusky and the rest of the gang managed to escape. “Zis effrontery vill not be tolerated! Ze Canyon Pete Gang has gone too far! I am soon to be mountingk an expedition to root zese bandits out of zeir hole und bringk zem to justice! Zat red-headed madvoman is but ze first of ze gangk to pay ze price for daringk to oppose me,” Dr. von Kraag said after the gunfight.

The wounded deputy, Mr. Welch, is described as resting in good condition.

Gazette Gossip
All the News That's Not Fit for Print!

All the News That’s Not Fit for Print!
Gathered by Suzie Q, your eyes and ears in Canyon Diablo!

In case you haven’t seen the signs up by the church, Freedom Patterson comes to town this Sunday to bring the Call of Destiny Revival to Canyon Diablo! Come forth to have your sins washed away, or at least your wallet, and Chicago Annie’s is having a celebration to welcome in Reverend Patterson! Third drink is on the house Saturday night – when the morning comes you can crawl out of the gutter and get your salvation!

Was all the smoke hiding the grisly murder of a young boy by one of the sheriff’s deputies? And was Daniel West falling to his knees in guilt, not grief? That’s what more than a couple church goers are curious about. A number of them have been waiting outside the jail for answers, and I’ve got a feeling the answers they want are in blood. And even still, there are mumbles like, “How much can we trust a sheriff the mayor hasn’t fully sworn in to serve justice to one of his own men?” Well, righteous boys and girls, we’ll just have to see!

There’s a new show coming to the Rialto in two weeks. Producer and theater owner Samuel Gates is awfully tight-lipped about it, but has let slip it’s a popular musical come all the way from Chicago. He’s even got the stagehands and ticket takers in the dark, but fear not readers – Suzie’s on the case!

It’s Canyon Pete’s 30th birthday and he’s throwing a huge party on Saturday! Music, dancing, and tres leche cake will abound! Stay late enough and the tequila’s sure to come out – Canyon Pete may make a safe, quiet living, but trust this humble lady: the man knows how to throw a party!

Doc Halliwell’s seat in the Road to Ruin’s starting to collect dust, and I’ve heard that it’s because of some little lady he’s taken a fancy to! Who would have ever imagined anyone would want something to do with that mountain of a man when he wasn’t paying or you weren’t bleeding to death? We’ll see how long this streak lasts, but I’ll be wondering where this little missy was back when he was helping to deliver my children through half a bottle of whiskey!

By accounts about town a gambler by the name of Edwin Ashford left Keno Harry’s with nearly $1,000 Monday night! And who says the house always wins? James Thorpe of the Gefroren Freud Ice Cream Emporium said he even got the shake Mr. Ashford’s hand and the gambler left a $50 tip for one cup of pistachio ice cream right before leaving town!

Despite being named as the company behind the attacks on the railworkers, a Bayou Vermillion train arrived in canyon Diablo today. What’s in it is unknown, but the boys down at the Silver palace said an angel of a woman came off the train and checked in – I even heard the waiters fighting over who got to bring her dinner up! I’m sure von Kraag’ll be on the case and ready to smoke the trouble (and the townfolk) out – and how many fires and false alarms will Dr. von Kraag be causing if we do elect such a scientific madman to public office?

Mayhem and Murder on lower Second Street!

by Sarah Levine

Lower second street housing was rocked by two separate incidents today when there was an unscheduled scientific test in the early afternoon that gave fright of widespread fires in the mostly wooden houses along lower Second Street, and again later that day when the body of a young boy was found in one of the homes.

The body of the boy, Guillermo Elias, was found by deputies in training Jack Allen, Morgan Welch, and Daniel West, after conducting a through searching of many of the homes along lower Second Street. The boy was found in the house being rented by Mr. West, though it is unknown whether or not this murder was sent as a message, or just to scare the deputies and sheriff away from the murderous Bayou Vermillion company. The boy's mother, Catalina Elias, spoke briefly: "it breaks my heart to know little Guillermo won't be coming home, but Dr. von Kraag's men were there when I needed them most and took my son's disappearance seriously. They did all they could, and got to the bottom of it faster than I had ever hoped. I know now he must be in a better place."

Earlier in the day, Mr. Allen had an unscheduled and unannounced testing of one of Dr. von Kraag's new inventions – a flare device for use to alert the town when the Cannon Peak gang attacks again. While it is an admirable plan, and one which will no doubt save lives the next time the villainous Cannon Peak gang comes in force (if it's working right by then!), the testing caused a huge gout of black smoke and sparks to rise from the device, which set the residents of Lower second street in a fearful tizzy. Luckily, campaign manager Malin LeBeau was on hand to both explain the device and apologize for the botched test, offering all residents of Lower Second Street free ice cream from Dr. von Kraag's Gefroren Freud Ice Cream Emporium. Residents grumbled that they were not a scientific testing ground, but were overjoyed at the offer of free pistachio ice cream. One resident commented, "It's mighty fine that von Kraag is working so hard for Canyon Diablo, designin' things and such, but he's got to realize Lower Second Street ain't no testing ground. Still, though, I'd be proud to have such an industrious man as my sheriff!"

Many people saw deputy Daniel West, of which little is known in comparison to sheriff spokesmen Malin LeBeau and Jack Allen, fall to his knees outside of the home in grief that a young life was lost. He did not resist arrest when Mr. Allen and Mr. Welch escorted him to the town jail for questioning, treating him as any other potential criminal as the body was found in his residence. Dr. von Kraag did not comment on his way to the town jail, but his face was solemn as he went to question one of his trusted men.

This incident leaves many questions, but we all can agree that lower Second Street has had more than enough excitement in one day.

Railworkers, Miners Urged Back to Work

by Sarah Levine, staff writer 

Railworkers and miners are being assured that their job is "as safe now as it ever was" by former A&P railworker-turned-deputy Jack Allen and Sheriff Campaign Manager Malin LeBeau, due to the work of Dr. von Kraag and his law dogs.

At the brink of full scale pandemonium in the rail yard over the recent murders of railworkers on the job, workers were promised that the killers and saboteurs had been brought to justice. With Mr. Allen's back up, Mr. LeBeau convincingly claimed that the attacks had been caused by an unnamed competing railroad company in the guise of monster attacks. These attacks had been brought to an end by Sheriff volunteer Dr. von Kraag and his crew, and the wool was torn from the eyes of the conflicted railworkers. Within hours, A&P rail agents were confirming the story and workers were smiling as they went out to do their jobs without fear of death and the encumbrances of armed guards.

This news could not have come at a better time, as it is widely rumored that representatives of both the Dixie Rails and the Black River Company are arriving in Canyon Diablo today to examine the progress and morale of A&P's steel driving, and to also examine Canyon Diablo's place as a bustling railtown eager to grow into a thriving rail city.

Dr. von Kraag did not address his sterling work in ending the terror haunting the rails, instead speaking of the wonders of the future and how he intends to lead Canyon Diablo into a technological utopia. Malin LeBeau was quick to answer questions and assure the author that Dr. von Kraag had the best interests of Canyon Diablo and the rail line in his heart in his pursuit of the office of Sheriff, and also pointed out the German doctor's many gifts to the town, from the brewery to the ice cream parlor.

In what is far from the least atrocious act in the Great Rail Wars, it is good to see citizens rising to the occasion and providing safety and peace of mind for their fellows. Dr. von Kraag has publicly spoken out against the Cannon Peak Gang repeatedly – hopefully they'll be next to face his Teutonic justice!

Shootout at Gefroren Freud

A raging gunfight erupted on the streets of Canyon Diablo yesterday, when notorious outlaw Black Bart McClusky called out local resident and inventor Dr. Reinhardt von Kraag at the Gefroren Freud Ice Cream Emporium.

Although dismissed by many residents as a “tinhorn,” the good Doctor responded to the the challenge with true Western gumption, striding manfully, if a bit slowly, onto Main Street to meet his antagonist. Patrons who remained inside the Ice Cream Emporium included the children of Widow Parson’s bible study class, and well-known gambler and raconteur Mr. Malin LeBeau, as well as employees Rupert Hennessy and Jimmy Dengler.

As soon as Dr. von Kraag stepped through the door, McClusky reached for his pistol, but despite all expectations the elderly Bavarian beat the veteran gunman to the draw and shot him with several rounds from his custom-made Gatling Pistol.

A general skirmish then erupted, as several other members of the Canon Peak Gang drew weapons and opened fire on the doctor. Von Kraag took cover behind a nearby dairy wagon, and in the end, his scientifically-developed weapon proved superior, leaving two of the bandits dead in the street, Black Bart badly wounded, and the rest of the gang in full flight. The only other casualties were a pair of milk jugs.

Once the dust had cleared, Doctor von Kraag nobly treated his opponent’s wounds before sending him off to a cell in the jailhouse. As the crowd gathered in the aftermath of the battle, von Kraag made a surprising announcement, declaring his intention to run for the post of Sheriff. The Sheriff’s office has been vacant since the murder of James Beacham, the last to wear the star.

Although a foreigner by birth, Doctor von Kraag embodies the American ideals of Progress, Determination, and Service. If his scientific weaponry can bring an end to the depredations of the Canon Peak Gang once and for all, then he deserves the support of the electorate of Diablo Canyon.

The Canyon Diablo Gazette
The Most-Read Newspaper in Canyon Diablo

These are articles posted in the Canyon Diablo Gazette.

Some typical columns are:

  • News articles.
  • Articles about the railroad buisness.
  • Articles about happenings in and around the local area.
  • Articles about the war.
  • Interviews with respectable folk in town.
  • Editorial Opinion Articles (often with special guests).
  • Gossip.
  • Advice.

If you’re going to “speak” with the voice of one of the NPCs around town, just run it through me first. I’m unlikely to say no, I just want to be apprised of the situation beforehand.

There’s likely to be a chip-based reward depending on the article.


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