Western Short Stories
Johnston McCulley

Buckskin Santa Claus 

Johnston McCulley

COLD wind stung Tim Reilly as he kicked at his pony’s ribs with the heels of his moccasins and urged the mount up the hill through the snow sprinkled brush.

Winding along the base of the hill was the frozen creek. On this side was a level clearing of quite some extent where the wagon train could be corralled, a position that could be defended easily. On the opposite side, where the bank was about ten feet high, was a growth of thick, stunted trees which would furnish good cover for enemies. Read the rest of Buckskin Santa Claus HERE>>

Marshal of Tadpole Gulch 

Johnston McCulley

THE roan pony Dave Hewson was riding loped around the shoulder of a hill and began an easy descent where the trail dipped, and Hewson saw he was within a short distance of the desert village men called Tadpole Gulch.

In that semiarid country seamed with dry watercourses and generously freckled with clumps of dry brush, a gulch was to be expected. But it didn’t look like tadpole country. Read the rest of Marshal of Tadpole Gulch HERE>>

His Kind of Hellion

Johnston McCulley

Early that morning a rider strange to the locality emerged from the swirls of mist lifting over the wasteland, loped into the sleepy little community known as Desert Edge. Nobody showed along the town’s one street, and the hitchrails were empty. Old Pop Hopper, always an early riser, was just opening the front door of his store.

Pop glanced up quickly when he heard the sound of hoofbeats. He squinted at the rider over the tops of his steel-rimmed spectacles, giving him a swift but keen appraisal. In Desert Edge, strangers were few and generally of the same sort. And it was Pop’s quick guess that this one would follow the usual pattern. Read the rest of His Kind of Hellion HERE>>

Advertised in Advance

Johnstone McCulley

In the little town of Rock Castle, at the edge of the desert country, the recognized social center was known as Hank’s Place, though it was as much Ike’s as Hank’s, since Ike Cumway and Hank Redlan were partners.

Ike and Hank had come to Rock Castle when there was no indication of a town except a few tents and a mining boom. The boom passed on, but the tents changed into shacks and remained. Read the rest of Advertised in Advance HERE>>