May 25, 2011

More selections from Tara Kane, part 5.

The approximate spot where Soapy Smith died.

In this selection from Tara Kane, authors George Markstein and Jacqui Lyons use Soapy's partner, John Clancy as a Judas character that secretly goes to the opposition, in this case the White Pass & Yukon Railway, and agrees to spy on Soapy. Once again, the authors had no idea of the facts about Clancy,  Soapy's partner in Jeff Smith's Parlor and other saloons in Skagway who was exonerated by the vigilantes after Soapy's death, as not knowing anything about Soapy's crooked side. Needless to say this is absolutely ridiculous as Soapy would not have gone into business with someone  who would not back his sort of enterprises. My family has suspected for decades that Clancy made some sort of deal with the opposition in order to remain free of harm or jail.

In Tara Kane, Tara witnesses John Clancy meeting with the railroad men and reports it to Soapy.

“You know the hotel’s full of railmen? Well, I saw Clancy there.”
Suddenly Smith was very alert.

“He seems to have gone up in the world,” she went on. “He’s got new clothes. He was smoking a fat cigar. And he had a meeting with Tancrede, after I left. He seemed pretty much at home.”

“Well!” He examined the tip of his cheroot. He was almost talking to himself. “That explains a lot. It sort of looks as if our friend Clancy has been bought. I wondered why he’s been avoiding me. Now it figures.”

He stood up and went to the window, staring out in silence.

“Jeff,” Tara said quietly.

He said nothing.

“You can’t fight the railroad. You can’t blackmail them either. They’re too big.”

He swung around. “Nobody’s too big for Jeff Smith in Skagway. I mean to have myself a piece of that railroad, any way I can.”

“They won’t have you, Jeff. They won’t let you get a look-in.”

“You’d be surprised what can go wrong when you build a railroad. Accidents. Landslides. Explosions.” He smiled. “Believe me, Tara, a few armed men and a load of dynamite, they might find it cheaper my way.”

Tara recalled the cold, calculated eyes of Tancrede. “Jeff, if you try to stop themthey’ll kill you. They’ll hire somebody, and”

More to come

May 18, 2011
May 3, 2011 
April 29, 2011 
April 28, 2011

Jeff Smith


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