Chapter One Hundred and Twenty five: The Long Trail

It was a few days later, and Belle had
driven out to pick up Charlie from outside Treesville, where he had
been canvassing for his last few signatures.

“I got them all.” He said. “We
have enough signatures for the Pleasantville City Council to be
forced to create a Chamber of Commerce. More than enough really. 107

“Well done!” Belle grinned. Charlie
just stared stonily forward. Belle sighed. “So what's next?”

“Webster will be out here tomorrow,
and then on Monday we take the case to Demon, with our approvals from
the Brisvegas Mega Council.” Charlie told her.

Belle nodded. They drove along silently
for a while. Silence wasn't usual between the pair, and Belle felt

“Do you feel confident?” She asked.

“Of getting a Chamber of Commerce?
Yes.” Charlie told her. “Of being the President? Nope.”

“It won't be Demon though. Not with
how public opinion is on him right now.” Belle pointed out.

Charlie growled. “Yeah, and it took
an innocent nurse dying to turn people against him.”

Belle watched the road, as she sped
along the highway back to Pleasantville. “Let's make her death not
be in vain then.”

They continued driving. Belle kept an
eye on her best friend. Of the two, Charlie was the one who felt
things more. Things affected him more than they affected Belle. He
would get himself caught up in his feelings and thoughts, getting
churned up to the point he acted rashly. That's why he ran away to
Awesomica after Joe died. That's why he'd dragged Giggles out of bed
to discover that the Death Valley Gang and the Mobsters of Misneach
had merged after his own grand-father Charles died. She knew she had
to keep an eye on him now. One rash move could undo everything.

Charlie meanwhile was going over the
signatures in his mind, thinking about what would happen in court on

“You can't lose your temper at him.”
Belle said suddenly, making him jump slightly. “You have to stick
to the facts, and not let him bait you. I'll be in the audience, but
I can't say or do anything. I can't stop you from doing anything.”

Charlie hissed. He thought about the
Pleasantville Riots, when he had charged at Demon with the Lions Claw
Blade, only stopped by Giggles and the Lucky Seven Gun.

“He's managed to get into both of our
heads at some point.” Belle continued. “But you can't let him
this time. There's too much at stake. I know you're the more
passionate of the two of us – you can afford to be, you don't have
a stupid violent gene like I do – but you have to keep it in check
on Monday.”

Charlie looked at his best friend.

“You can do it though. Even if you
have to somehow Improbability it.” Belle told him. She pulled up to
a red light and smiled at him. “You're gonna hit the first real
strike against the corruption in this city.”

“I couldn't have done it without you.
If you hadn't put the ideas in everyones heads, I couldn't do this.”
Charlie told her. “The protest and the PRO and the PCC might have
failed, but they set the stage for me.”

Belle smiled at Charlie. He smiled
back. The rest of the trip was filled with discussions about what
would happen on Monday…and lamenting that the Brisvegas Leos would
be facing the Crate Hill Falcons that weekend and would probably be
in for another loss!

“Oh will you STOP IT.” Judith
Jofrey snapped at the father of her unborn child. “Honestly, the
way you sulk, I don't know how you ever became the leader of a
crime-fighting group.”

“I'm NOT sulking!” Sulked Daniel.

“Sure you're not.” Judith lay back
in her hospital bed after another walk with Marion. “Everything
will be fine. I don't think that Crusader will be trying anything

“What makes you so sure about that?”
Daniel snapped.

“Watch your tone.” Judith narrowed
her eyes at him. “I'm sure about it, because the Crusader has
killed someone. That puts a target on your back. Especially if this
wasn't sanctioned by Roger.”

Daniel pouted.

“Has anyone been in contact with
Roger recently? Might pay to let him know he has a rogue agent.”
Judith pointed out. “That would keep that Crusader under control.”

“Or give Roger ideas.” Daniel said.

“You're insisting on being
disagreeable.” Judith sighed. “Have you apologised to Petunia

“I don't see why I should apologise
for anything!” Daniel snapped.

“She has been looking after me for
the past week with expert devotion and skill. She has made sure that
our child is still surviving. You have NO right to be angry at her
about anything.” Judith told him off.

Daniel continued to pout.

“You are such a child.” Judith
sighed. “I'm going to have a nap. Please leave me in peace, you're
ruining the vibe.”

“Vibe?” Daniel said incredulously.

“Yes. Marion bought me some healing
crystals, and they can't work properly with negativity around. Shoo!”
Judith snapped. Daniel couldn't help but chuckle as he gave her a
small kiss and let her rest.

He walked out into the waiting room,
where the rest of the Knights (sans Petunia, who had gone to do
paperwork) were waiting for him.

They all looked at him. He looked back
at them.

“Hey fellow Knights!” Suddenly
Webster burst in, Charlie behind him, looking happy to see everyone.
“Whoa….whoa….oh dear…” His reception quickly cooled as he
took stock of the tension in the room.

“Hey Webster.” Sammy tried to smile
at the former Noble Knight of the Last Order. “How are things?”

“About to get better. Once Charlie
gets this Chamber of Commerce up and running I'll be in a better
position to mount a case against Demon. I have a lot of evidence
already, I just need him voted out.” Webster told them. “And I
think the Chamber of Commerce will be a huge blow to him if he can't
get control of it.”

“A case against Demon?” Suddenly
everyone in the room was interested.

“If my evidence is correct, I can get
him put away for a very, VERY long time. Especially if Sunny includes
evidence of her child abuse.” Webster looked at Sunny, who dared to
look hopeful. “And if I can get Demon put away, then it's only a
matter of time before I take down the Mobsters of Misneach and the
Death Valley Gang. Including the corrupt Counsellors that let them
rule in the first place.”

Daniel tensed up. Everyone else

“There's no way to avoid it Dan. If
things are to get better, than everyone who is guilty needs to pay.”
Webster told him.

“And who made you judge, jury and
executioner?” Daniel growled. Charlie watched him as he said the
words, before shaking it off. Daniel couldn't be a killer.

“I just have evidence. Enough to put
a lot of people away.” Webster looked slightly frazzled.

“Hmph.” Daniel walked off. “I'm
getting myself a coffee.”

The group watched as he stalked off.

“I did warn you things were frosty.”
Charlie said as Webster tried to regain his composure.

“FROSTY? That was downright frozen
solid! What the heck HAPPENED?!” Webster squeaked. “I was no
where near as antsy when Tate was born, and she nearly died twice!”

“Yeah, but someone is actually trying
to murder Judith and by extension, the baby.” TJ said. “I can
understand that he's a bit on edge.”

“But hasn't he been on edge for a
while?” Webster looked at the door.

“It's been a hard road since you left
mate.” Sammy sighed.

“There's a long, long trail,
a-winding, into the land of my dreams.” Charlie sang.

“Old war songs Charlie? You're really
getting worn down!” Webster chuckled.

“Belle made me listen to it.
Sometimes it feels like a bit of a war.” Charlie said. “Anyway,
I'm gonna go finalize my speech for Monday. You all have fun

“Fun?!” The former Sir Hedgehog
squeaked as Charlie left.

Master Revolver didn't look his best.
Ever since the Death Valley Mobsters had lost power in Pleasantville
he hadn't been doing too well.

His biggest worry? Mobster Marion, and
her mental health. Thankfully, after Judith got pregnant, Marion
seemed to calm down a bit. That was good, but then there was the fact
that the Death Valley Gang and the Mobsters of Misneach had become
almost a non-entity in the grand scheme of things. Even the March
Hill Crusaders were more active.

He sighed, and looked at his reflection
in the mirror. Brown eyes looked back at him. The brown eyes of the
Masters clan. He knew full well that Belle Masters was the enigma
known as Giggles. He had known it from the first time he had seen her
use the Lucky Seven Gun. The Seven Weapons of the Seer could only be
used by those of extraordinary skill, or matching bloodline. The
Masters clan and the Begly clan were two such bloodlines, as was the
Misneach bloodline. So was the Lightheart clan, but as far as
Revolver knew they'd been wiped out in the Silent Lake massacre.

He knew the original mission of the
Death Valley Gang. He knew it had been lost by his grand-father, Toby
Masters, who had stylized himself as Lone Revolver. Knowing
everything that had happened, how everything was going…maybe it was
time to return to the Masters clan.

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