They were back in the Cosmopolitan Hotel the next day. All men now. The women were gone. Wyatt and Doc and Warren. Texas Jack and Turkey Creek Jack and Sherman McMasters. They always had revolvers with them. They always carried long guns. Doc was at a table in the bar drinking whiskey when Wyatt came in. Wyatt leaned his Winchester against the table and sat down.

“Amazing,” Doc said, “how a few gunshots clear everything up.”

The barman brought Wyatt coffee.

“Now it’s all out in the open and aboveboard and right in front,” Doc said. “You against Behan. Earps against cowboys. Republicans against Democrats. The Epitaph against The Nugget. Now everybody wants to look can see what they want to see.”

Wyatt drank his coffee.

“You know Behan put Stilwell up to shooting Morgan, and you know it was because Morgan knocked him on his ass when he come bothering Josie. You know he’s in on them stage robberies, Wyatt. You know he’s getting a nice slice of the cattle rustling out of Mexico. You know him and Ringo and Curley Bill are tighter than the valve on a virgin.”

“Got a copy of the coroner’s report on Morgan,” Wyatt said.

He was holding the thick, white coffee mug in both hands and staring over the top of it through the saloon doors out at the little stretch of Allen Street that showed under them.

“Says Stilwell, Spence, Hank Swilling, Indian Charlie, and somebody named Fries are the main suspects for shooting Morgan. Gives Indian Charlie’s real name in there, Florentine Cruz. Never knew Charlie’s name was Florentine Cruz.”

“We knew the rest pretty much anyway, didn’t we?” Doc said.

He picked up the whiskey bottle and splashed a little more into his glass.

“I’m putting together a posse,” Wyatt said. “Heard that Spence and Indian Charlie are out at Spence’s wood camp.”

The steam from the coffee whispered up past his face.

“I’ll be in the street on horseback at nine this morning. I’d be pleased if you’d join me.”

“You promise me I can shoot one of ’em?” Doc said.

“ ’Less they shoot you first,” Wyatt said.

Doc drank off the newly poured whiskey. He smiled.

“No, Wyatt, I’ll shoot one of them unless they kill me first.”

“Nine o’clock,” Wyatt said. “Be ready to stay out awhile.”

At nine in the morning Wyatt was there on Allen Street up on the blue roan gelding with the sun at his back. He had a Colt.45 and a.45 Winchester rifle, and a lot of ammunition in the saddlebags. He had a blanket roll tied behind his saddle, and a pack mule on a lead. Warren was up beside him, smaller than Wyatt and dark. Doc was there mounted, as were McMasters and Turkey Creek Jack Johnson, looking too big for the small bay mare he rode. Texas Jack Vermilion had a rifle and a shotgun in saddle scabbards. Vermilion sported a flamboyant mustache.

Wyatt handed the pack mule lead line to McMasters.

“You can ride drag for a while, Sherm,” he said.

As McMasters led the mule to the back of the group, John Behan came up Allen Street. Billy Breakenridge was with him, and Dave Neagle. Wyatt nodded to Neagle.

“Morning, Dave,” Wyatt said.

Neagle nodded back at Wyatt.

“Dave don’t look so comfortable,” Warren murmured. “He scared?”

“Dave’s never scared,” Wyatt said. “Probably embarrassed at being with Johnny.”

“You fellas going someplace?” Behan said.

He was smiling. No one answered him.

“Anyplace special?” Behan said.

Breakenridge and Neagle stood on either side of him a few feet from him. Both wore deputy badges. Both wore Colts. Neagle’s eyes moved steadily as he looked at all five of the horsemen.

“Wyatt, I need to see you,” Behan said.

No one spoke. Wyatt looked at Behan. His gaze was heavy. It was as if Behan could feel the weight of it. He didn’t move, but he looked like he wished to back up. The silence lengthened awkwardly. Finally Wyatt broke it.

“About what?” Wyatt said.

“About killing Frank Stilwell,” Behan said.

“You are going to see me once too many times, Johnny,” he said.

Behind Wyatt his party began to spread out. Doc sidled his horse left, Warren right. The pack mule wouldn’t move sideways, so Vermilion stayed with it where he was. But McMasters and Turkey Creek Jack moved wider still so that the Earp party was now in a wedge-shaped phalanx.

“I will talk with Paul,” Wyatt said. “Next time I’m in Tucson.”

Behan didn’t say anything. Wyatt made a small clicking noise and tapped the roan with his knee. The roan moved forward and the rest of the horses moved after them. The pack mule had no objection to moving forward and joined the rest of the party as the horses walked on past Behan and his deputies. Wyatt lit a cigar carefully, turning it to get it right, then when it was going as he wanted it. He clicked to the roan again and the horses broke into a trot as they turned onto Third Street and out of sight, as Behan, watching them go, could see them no more.

“Who’s Paul?” Warren said.

“Bob Paul. Sheriff in Pima County.”

“Why’ll you talk to him?”

“Well,” Wyatt said, “it’s his jurisdiction…”

Wyatt drew on his cigar and let the smoke out slowly. The horses were eager in the early desert spring, tossing their heads and arching their necks to strain against the reins as the posse moved out of town.

“And,” Wyatt said, “he’s a real lawman.”

“Unlike Mr. Behan,” Doc said.

“He ain’t a real anything,” Warren said.

At the back, holding the pack mule, McMasters raised his voice.

“Why don’t we just plug him, Wyatt.”

“We won’t plug him,” Wyatt said.

They camped that night a few miles north of Tombstone, sleeping close to the fire in the still, cold night.

“Got the coroner’s report,” Wyatt said to no one in particular. “Says that most likely the people who killed Morgan are Frank Stilwell…”

“The late Frank Stilwell,” Doc said softly.

“… Peter Spence, Fries, Swilling and Florentine Cruz.”

“Cruz?” McMasters said.

“Indian Charlie,” Johnson said.

“That’s all,” Doc said.

“That’s all they named as suspects,” Wyatt said.

“You know Curley Bill was in it, and Ringo,” Doc said. “And you know that goddamned weasel Behan was behind it.”

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