The massive auto-gyro, complete with mended basket and fixed up motor, takes to the skies. Your contract is paid up for a return flight to Salt lake City, although Carter McCormick seems happy enough to renegotiate – $100 per passenger should buy you passage anywhere in the Northern states.
The auto-gyro first heads West, avoiding a suspicious cloud of what could be more Devil Bats. This takes you away from the Devil’s Tower along what appears to be a newly built railroad track. It seems someone has been granted permission to build railroad track through the Sioux lands – or is doing so without permission, although previous attempts at that simply resulted in scalped workers or other unsubtle warnings from Sitting Bull’s men. Given the location of the track, it would most likely belong to Iron Dragon, the notorious Chinese pirates from the West Coast. Perhaps this ties in with the Chinese guard seen outside the Devil’s Tower ? In any case, this would give Iron dragon a clear advantage in the Great Rail Wars – all that would remain once linked through the Indian territories would be to build the final link South from the Iron Dragon cities onto the City of Lost Angels
The gyro turns off the track and back South towards Utah. The weather feels warm and fresh, and you are reminded that for the first time since your encounters back in Lost Angels you may have time to relax. Although the small matter of your failure to recover the Heart of Darkness for Darius Hellstromme could cause a few small hiccups. Not to mention the vanishing of four members of the Agency sent to accompany you to “collect the heart of darkness”. So much for relaxation. Hopefully there should be enough time to buy a few, fast horses…
During the flight, the wind blows at your clothes, and a couple of times Carter catches sight of the strange implant now welded onto Trixabelle‘s arm. He says very little, but the look he gives shows that despite familiarity with Weird Science’s finest inventions, such an alien attachment is still quite unsettling. Zachariah rests in the basket for once, having a badly shot gut to restore. Prayers are mumbled, but to no avail. It seems Stone’s bullets are beyond the powers of the blessed even. Instead, Annie Appleseed applies a simple bandage, and natural healing begins it’s slow measured cycle of recovery. A good measure of whiskey assists with the healing too, the last of Felix and Carter’s combined stash. This doesn’t stop Felix from asking two or three times later if anyone has seen his bottle – a forgetfulness oft seen with inebriation seeming a much greater cause for concern when still present sober. The streak of white hair, like the stripe in a birds plumage, setting him a little further away from what most folk would call “common, decent people”. Li Fu calmly meditates through all of these scenes; his Chi power served him well in the struggles against Stone, and he hopes it’s flow will be just as uninhibited when destiny truly calls for it.