Having a hot Colt pistol barrel put to his temple, wasn’t Throckmorton’s idea of fun. His body tensed and he gasp for breath. I don’t believe the pain from his injuries held a candle to the possibility of being executed on the spot.
He tried to say something, but I pushed the Colt barrel harder into his temple and growled, “Shut up.”
Neither of us moved. I believe we knew the identity of the riders we could hear in the distance predicated our fates.
I let out a deep breath that I didn’t know I was holding when Major Murphy at the head of about sixteen troopers rounded the bend.
Throckmorton’s body sagged like a balloon with a fast leak.
I pushed Throckmorton forward and jammed my Colt back in my belt. Throckmorton squealed in pain as he staggered forward.
Major Murphy brought his troop to a halt and I saluted. He returned my salute and said, “Well Jim, I see ya already got ‘im.”
I answered, “Yes, but we need to get him to a place where we can protect him from getting shot like some of his partners. Would ya take him to yar garrison and hold him there for further action?”
Major Murphy beamed from ear to ear. “It would be my privilege to incarcerate this treasonous dog.”
I chuckled and said, “Well take him right now because I don’t know when another Yank patrol will appear in tha area.”
Major Murphy replied, “I understand.” The Major indicated to one of his troopers to dismount and mount Throckmorton on his horse. He told the dismounted trooper to ride double with the Troop’s corporal.
While his orders were being carried out, I added, “Major, please write in yar report that ya received my sergeant’s telegraph about rendezvousing with me as planned south of Williamsport. My report will deal with tha chase and capture of Throckmorton, as well as the turnover of his person to ya.”
The Major nodded his agreement. We saluted each other and he and his contingent immediately started for his garrison near Martinsburg.
By this time, the carriage in which Throckmorton had been sitting had turned around and returned to the scene of the spy’s untimely ejection. For some reason I pulled my Colt with my right hand and held it alongside my right leg as the vehicle pulled to a stop beside me. I wasn’t totally surprised to see that the lone passenger was the snobbish young woman that had been visiting the lieutenant at the Confederate outpost in Martinsburg a while back.
As usual, the harpy had a snarl on her face as she demanded, “I’ll dare ya shoot at our carriage and frighten my horses.”
I looked up at the driver, who was staring straight ahead. To make sure he didn’t have a weapon on his person, I said, “Ya, driver, get down.”
The driver turned to look at me with a fearful expression. Then he looked at the young woman, who looked at me and said, “I dare ya to talk to my driver like that.
I looked at her with a grimace and pointed the Colt at the driver. Without taking my eyes off the woman I said, “Ya have harbored a traitor and spy for tha Union in yar carriage. I will talk to ya anyway I please.”
This brought a gasp from the woman, who put one hand to her mouth as if to stifle a scream and the other hand to her chest as if she could have a heart attack any minute.
The driver got down off the carriage in a jiffy and the woman cowered as I looked at her without one ounce of respect or pity.