Shadow's Grasp - Parts 36 to 40

Author: MMW

Disclaimer: See index


With dusk yet two hours of
Goat spared his safety no second thought
For the men he’d left behind
His safe place surly they’d never find

And so the grove was nearly set
For the wedding of he and Millicent
But his reluctant bride he could not see
For nanny told him bad luck that ‘d be

The nanny stood in shadow dark
Still willing to play the part
Of trusted servant to the Goat
Until she could slit the woman’s throat

And then she could take the child
Who would grow up meek and mild
And love her as a child would
With all the ardor that he could

And right now since time was short
She gave to Goat a good report
She watched the madman walk away
Knowing in his place he’d stay

Within the room there could be found
A happy family and joyous sound
For hiding all her fear and doubt
Millicent laughed as Alan pretended to pout

But giggles soon did ensue
As Millicent commented Alan grew
As she lifted up her son
And the two engaged in fun

For rarely did the Goat permit
Mother and son to visit
So with each chance they did make
Joyous memories ‘e’er ‘twas too late

But the woman, had she known
That she was no more alone
Might have held the spark of hope
That faded as soon she’d marry Goat

But softly through the woods outside
Did six men duck and hide
For Vin had quickly done his part
And now rested in the cart

Chris and Nate did both survey
The land surrounding the field of play
And met back so they could discuss
What they could do and what they must

Buck with JD at his side
Along the house they both could hide
And find the woman whom they sought
While the others stood and fought

Chris and Nate would contain
the servants and the body main
By the stables where they stood
The others thought this plan was good

Josiah would go and seek out Goat
All his mind to that devote
Josiah nodded to agree
And looked forward Goat to see

For Ezra Chris had special plans
And signaled that he should stand
Walking ‘way just a little bit
Chris told Ezra where he fit

Ezra nodded he understood
Knowing he could do most good
Exactly where he’d been placed
As he slid behind his poker face

Then meeting up the six did know
It was time for them to go
As free these people from evil’s hand
And let light their lives command


Watching Nate and Chris make way
JD could think of ought to say
‘Good luck’ just did not seem right
For this battle they would fight

For he could feel the forces stir
And the past seemed but a blur
For time was slowing as his heart raced
And a dark creature they would face

Glancing up at his dear friend
JD prayed it soon would end
For Buck was sagging quickly now
And JD made a silent vow

He knew for Vin and for himself
Buck had to go and no one else
To rescue Millicent the fair
From her fate in darkness’ lair

But Buck would need his strength at hand
For Wilmington could barely stand
So JD would be his crutch
When the exertion became too much

And together his big bro’ and he
Would the woman and her son free
And bring them back and give them hope
Of pleasant a life free from Goat

But now they headed for the house
Hoping that no guards they’d roust
And that within they’d only view
The woman and her son anew

Sneaking round to the side
They found a place in which to hide
And wait until the time was right
To signal to commence the fight

For that had been a part of plan
That they would strike at one command
And from their vantage JD could sight
Each of the teams prepared to fight

And see when all were in position
To complete their noble mission
And strike a blow for righteous’ sake
And allow the Goat to meet his fate

For murder had the Goat committed
For as much he had admitted
And now Goat would fin’ly pay
For walking down dark, evil’s way

And to justice be brought to bear
And sit in the accused man’s chair
And Travis would just his crime
Sentencing Goat to do hard time

Of this JD had little doubt
For he knew all about
How Judge Travis ruled in court
And that the trial would be short

Then catching out of corner eye
Two of the forms he’d need to spy
He saw that Nate and Chris were set
But had not seen Josiah yet

Glancing off the other way
He was just about to say
That he wasn’t sure they’d got around
When he heard from Buck a quiet sound

And glancing o’er he saw Buck’s face
And followed the gaze to the place
Where Buck had seen a knife be drawn
And fear within the sight did spawn

Then seeing at last Josiah’s place
Was filled, JD did once more face
His mentor and his best friend
And then the signal did he lend


As two crept forth with knowing eyes
And stealth their size did belie
The man in black and the doc
Took cover safe behind a rock

And glancing at their prey below
Planned for the dangers that did show
And for potential problems too
That they would know what to do

For they had many to contain
That Josiah’s peace he could regain
And with but two to do the deed
Of clever plan they had great need

So caref’ly they developed one
That would not require death or gun
But just one well-placed blade
So Millicent, Buck could save

And shifting round to other side
Chris found a good place to hide
And view what Nate would have to do
To trap the men and women too

But should one try just to escape
Chris could not be too late
To stop the person’s panicked run
With careful usage of his gun

But that would be the last resort
As danger shots would surely court
By sounding out a call of fear
And chasing Goat away from here

So waiting on the former slave
Chris hoped Goat would see the grave
For what he’d done to Buck and Vin
To Chris had been a mortal sin

As Nathan waited for the time
That JD would send the sign
To start them on their latest fight
Nathan watched the coming night

For twilight’s shadows liked to play
And alter what was clear in day
And make a man’s eyes play a trick
And force him to act too quick

But with a look at Chris’ face
Nathan’s worry found its place
Far removed from the task before
And calm resumed its cloak once more

Pondering o’er their current state
Nathan wondered at what date
Josiah and Goat ‘d first met
For the whole story was not told yet

But the full knowledge could wait a while
As they traveled o’er the miles
To their home and humble town
Where someone each had settled down

And Buck and Vin then he would mend
And watch o’er his injured friends
And fight them with tooth and nail
That the Seven would not fail

Then glancing up at Chris again
He nodded once to his friend
And wondered at the look he saw
And the clenching of Chris’ jaw

But ‘e’re he could think it through
He knew what he had to do
For JD’s signal sounded loud
And Chris and he wold take the crow

And with a flick of arm and wrist
Through the air his knife did twist
And angle toward its tiny mark
That he and Chris could play their part


Quietly, through the brush
Did Ezra go but did not rush
For his mission did stealth require
To avoid Josiah’s determined ire

For Chris had given him the task
Of watching o’er the Preacher’s back
And making sure the man remembered
They need Goat to surrender

For Chris feared that Josiah would
For get his path of right an good
And take Goat’s life for what he’d done
And if he did, then Goat had won

Though the villain deserved to die
With them his death could not lie
For though Vengeance danced within
Chris wouldn’t tread that path again

Nor would the leader once allow
To travel down that path now
Any of his chosen men
And never ones who he called friend

So Ezra went to watch a back
Of one whose insight now did lack
Perspective on the current war
Because of what ’d gone on before

And though the men knew some of that
They did not have all the facts
To the story Josiah ‘d lived
Back when he had youth to give

So following did Ezra creep
Praying now for silent feet
That Josiah he could trail
And ensure the man did not fail

To capture goat but not to kill
Though that was all the Seven’s will
For scum like this should not live
But to the earth, their flesh should give

That some good might from them arise
And beauty grow from their lies
But that decision would Travis rule
Leaving them one thing to do

With caution and with great care
They would deliver the Goat there
To stand and pay for all his crimes
And have right prevail one more time

Finally did Ezra see
Josiah crouch behind a tree
And knew that they had reached their spot
And were standing where they ought

Now they would just need to wait
And hope JD would not be late
In giving off the signal soon
He would be sounding the madman’s doom

And all would then be over and done
‘E’re the resting of the sun
And then upon the following morn
With a hope and joy reborn

The seven men with the rest
Would do what all of them did best
And head back toward the dusty town
Where they had won their wide renown

So settling in to watch the Preacher
Ezra spotted a wild creature
And it was while it he did spy
That from Josiah he’d removed his eye

And just as he turned back he saw
His fellow member of the law
Heading off to see the Goat
‘E’re JD had sent the note


Josiah stood, his heart a flame
His eyes ahead, his soul in pain
For he knew the awful fate
That for Millicent did wait

Though Chris asked him to delay
He'd not allow Goat to play
And take the life of an innocent
By stealing life from Millicent

Josiah knew that he would win
Freedom so life could begin
And he would then be free at last
From the evil shadow's grasp

For too long it had haunted him
And dragged him down the path of sin
And allowed the dark to reign
In his life and in the main

But by removing Goat right now
He would be keeping the solemn vow
That he made so long ago
When innocent blood did freely flow

And as the anger welled within
And thoughts came of what had been
Josiah lost the thread of plan
And took off too soon to make his stand

He heard not Ezra walk behind
For he had but one thing in mind
To confront the awful Goat
And to slit that loathsome throat

So from the shelter of his tree
Josiah left to go and see
To the end of the fiend
But all was not as it seemed

For as he 'proached the wooden shack
He felt a hand fall on his back
And instantly he turned to strike
To overcome whate'er he might

Too late did Sanchez fin'ly see
Whom his target was to be
And as he struck Ezra's face
He saw the man drop in place

And laying senseless on the ground
As signal sounded all around
Josiah's eyes grew wide with shock
As he heard the door quickly unlock

Then turning 'round once more he saw
The one who'd displayed his fatal flaw
And watched Goat's eyes grow ever wide
As he tried once more inside to hide

But with a shout of angry pain
Josiah wished Goat already slain
But though the blood be on his hands
Here Josiah 'd make his stand

He watched as goat did close the door
And slide the bolt to lock once more
But didn't stop to think it through
Exactly what he had to do

His blood had reached the boiling point
And the shack would he anoint
With Evil's blood and murder's stain
For Goat's demise would be Good's gain

And with a fist of focused rage
The fire flared within the sage
And he beat upon the door
Until the timber was no more.

With heaving chest he stepped inside
Leaving Goat no place to hide
But Goat had a pointed knife
He would use to take 'siah's life

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Email: MMW