The doors of the passenger car flew open and two gas canisters were tossed down the aisle. As they rolled they released a gas that knocked out all the passengers except for Streve who was sitting toward the back of the car. His force field filter blocked the gas from getting through. But he pretended to fall asleep like all the other passengers just in case someone responsible for the gas attack came in to check on the occupants.
Three anxious minutes later, a man dressed in black wearing a leather gas mask entered the car at the back and slowly walked up the aisle. He intently stared at each passenger and didn’t detect anything but snoozing people blissfully unaware of what was going on except for the man from Newgate, New York that was fully aware of everything even with his eyes shut. The man picked up the canisters and placed them in a burlap bag.
“They’re dead to the world,” said the man to two of his partners at the door of the front of the car.
“At least we won’t need to climb onto the top of the cars,” said one of the men. “The boss is a genius. I wish he had sent these things to us years ago. They would have made train robbery a whole lot easier.”
The three men left the car and headed to the front of the train. Streve knew they were after the gold coins in the vaults in the baggage car. He briefly read the mind of the man who passed by him and knew down the line there was a freight wagon waiting to unload nearly two tons of vaults and $20 and $50 gold pieces freshly minted in Denver. Keeping over $1 million in gold safe was a huge responsibility for the newest security agent for the Union Pacific on his first day.
After waiting a few minutes, Streve pulled his folded transporter out of its holder and flicked it open into a rectangular portal that he set on the floor. He reached into an inside pocket of his jacket and pulled out a transporter control. He wanted to be precise so as not to alert the train robbers he was a threat. So he turned on the screen of the controller and set it for the distance to the front of the coal car where he figured at least two of the robbers would be telling the engineer and fireman what to do.
The image of the backs of the robbers was clear as a bell. He had the drop on them. But he didn’t want to shoot them and alert the others he was awake. So as he stepped through the portal and was teleported to the coal car as the fireman was shoveling in another load of coal, he reached out to the robbers and stunned them thanks to his force field. They dropped to the floor of the locomotive like dead men.
The two men in the locomotive that ran the train stared at Streve. The engineer asked, “Are they dead?”
“No, they’re just stunned. A hundred thousand volts can do that to you. I’ll shove them off the train.”
Streve turned off his force field and picked the men up and tossed them off of the train. They rolled harmlessly down the embankment near the rails without making a sound that could be heard by the other robbers.
“Who are you?” asked the engineer.
“I’m Streve Fondulon from Newgate, New York. I’m the new security agent Jay Gould hired for the Union Pacific last night. Were you told what is in the baggage car?”
“They don’t tell us nothin’,” said the fireman.
“It’s better that way. The less you know the safer you two are. Did they tell you anything?”
“They told us to watch for a guy with a lantern about ten miles ahead. That will give us time to slow down for a freight wagon about four miles further on. I guess they want to unload what they’re taking from the train onto it,” said the engineer. “You’ve got around 15 minutes to do what you need to do.”
“Plenty of time.”
“How in the world did you get here?” asked the fireman. “I saw what looked like the inside of a passenger car through that thing that collapsed behind you.”
“It’s called a transporter. Once I arrive at my destination it folds itself up and teleports itself to its case that is also a transporter.”
“Never heard of it,” said the engineer. “Is it a newfangled gadget from back East?”
“You could say that. I’ve used one for years in Newgate. I rarely leave home without it. The same with my personal force field and shooting irons.”
The fireman stared at the handles of the pistols that were rectangular and not curved like a normal pistol butt. He asked, “How many rounds do they hold and where are they stored? I don’t see cylinders.”
“The projectiles are stored in the handles. A clip holds a dozen 45 caliber steel projectiles.”
“Ain’t that somethin’. I don’t see no hammers.”
“They’re electromagnetic discharge pistols.”
“Electric guns. Now I’ve heard everything,” said the engineer. “Good luck.”
“Thanks. See you two later.”
“Send us a signal if you get the drop on those guys back there,” the engineer requested.
“Act like the robbers are in control of the train. I don’t want the guys up ahead to know what’s happening.”
Streve didn’t know where all the robbers were located, so he decided not to teleport to the baggage car. He climbed onto the mountain of coal and carefully crawled on top of the passenger car that was between the coal car and the baggage car to make as little noise as possible.
Streve was a few feet from the back of the car when he saw a man standing guard in front of the door of the baggage car.Seconds later, the man raised his rifle and fired at Streve. Instead of vaporizing when it came in contact with the force field, the slug glanced off of the energy barrier. Streve unholstered his right pistol and shot the man through the heart. The projectile penetrated the door and buried itself into something inside.
The baggage car door swung open and two men fired upon Streve who was crawling toward the rear of the car he was on. Their slugs vaporized when they came in contact with Streve’s force field. The projectiles from both of Streve’s pistols penetrated the walls of the car that the robbers thought would protect him. They were dropped and replaced by two more robbers that were armed with rifles like the one first used against Streve.
Streve climbed down onto the back platform of the passenger car and was met by a slug that felt like a fist against his chest. He was thrown through the door of the car and landed flat on his back, stunned. He played dead to draw the men out.
The two gunmen cautiously entered the car and poked at Streve with the muzzles of their rifles. In a split second he grabbed the muzzles and pushed them aside as they discharged into the floor due to the energy of his field. He whipped out his pistols and shot the men in their legs. The projectiles shattered their leg bones. The sound of the discharge stunned them. Streve got to his feet and reached out to the men who were rolling in pain on the floor. They were instantly stunned.
Streve didn’t know how many robbers were left, so he approached the baggage car slowly.
“Is he dead?” asked a robber inside the baggage car.
“Yeah. He’s taken care of,” Streve said, hoping he could fool the remaining robbers.
Two more blasts came from inside the baggage car. The slugs shattered huge holes in the passenger car as Streve walked forward. He didn’t want to have one more slugs slam into his field, so he flipped open his force field and teleported to the car behind the baggage car.
Streve waited a minute before activating his transporter again. When he viewed the men from behind and saw them looking toward the front door of the baggage car expecting to see Streve enter that way, he raised his pistols and plugged two of the remaining five robbers in the back and shattered the right arms of two more robbers as they wheeled around to fire upon the security agent. Streve jumped through the portal and grabbed the remaining robber who was instantly stunned.
Streve opened the sliding baggage car door and shoved the robbers out. Minutes later, the train began to slow. Streve had shut the sliding door and waited to see what would happen next.
The train came to a stop and someone outside pounded on the door.
“Ready to open up?” he asked.
Streve quickly opened the door and pulled out his pistols. This took the men outside by surprise.
“Not today, guys. This train is going to reach Saint Louis tonight with its cargo intact.”
Streve slammed the door close and moments later the train picked up speed as it headed for Saint Louis. He flicked open his transporter and sent a pocket drone through the portal to have it locate the silver coin delivery train. The drone ascended to five miles above the ground and spotted the train nearly thirty miles behind the gold coin delivery train. He would have to handle the robbers quicker.
There were only two passenger cars, a dining car, and the baggage car. Streve saw only seven horses galloping behind the train. He decided to try a different strategy for taking on the robbers. He would use the element of surprise to take them on.
The passengers were asleep, so he knew there were no robbers in the car he was going to teleport to. By triangulation with the drone, Streve was able to teleport easier to the passenger car behind the baggage car where the robbers were located minus the two in the coal car.
Streve viewed the two robbers in the coal car through the portal, reached through, and grabbed them. His field stunned them instantly. After stepping through the portal, Streve pushed their unconscious bodies off of the train.
“Where did you come from?” asked the engineer.
“From the back passenger car. I’ve got five more robbers to handle. In a short while you’ll see a guy swinging a lantern.”
“I know. The two guys you tossed off of the train told me,” said the engineer.
“Act like the robbers have control of the train. I’ll take care of the rest of the guys.”
Streve walked through the portal to the passenger car to readjust the view. When he saw the remaining five robbers he reached through the portal and grabbed two of them. They dropped to the floor unconscious.
Streve transported to the passenger car in front of the baggage car and viewed the baggage car behind it. He grabbed two more robbers and dropped them like a couple sacks of potatoes. He jumped through the portal before the remaining robber could react. He grabbed him as he reached for his pistol and dropped him too.
Streve opened the sliding baggage car door and shoved the robbers out of the car seconds before the man with the lantern could see what the security agent had done. By the time the train came to a stop, the man outside that had pounded on the first baggage car door was a little more warry. He pounded on the door with a rifle butt.
“Is everything all right in there?” he asked.
Streve grabbed the handle of the door and slid it open quickly. He shot the right arm of the gunman off and forced the other man that was standing behind the freight wagon to drop his pistol.
After staring at Streve for a few moments the man asked, “Didn’t I see you on the gold coin delivery train? What are you; some kind of a phantom?”
“You bet I am. And I’m going to haunt you for the rest of your miserable life.”
Streve slid the baggage door close and the train slowly pulled away.
This is one possible chapter fragment for my upcoming book “The Phantom of the Union Pacific.” It takes place in 1880 when a man named Streve teleports from Newgate, New York to Kansas City where he catches a train for Denver where he intends on becoming a security agent for the Union Pacific. He has a force field, a transporter, a pair of electromagnetic discharge pistols, a small nuclear reactor, and a small replicator. He carries most of his things in a couple carpet bags and looks like everyone else on the train.
On the way to Denver he foils a train robbery which comes to the attention of Jay Gould who is running the Union Pacific from his office in Denver. He hires him shortly after he arrives in Denver.
I don’t know when I’ll write the book. But I intend on making it a blend of science fiction, a western, and a historical adventure book suitable for SyFy. And since Streve is from Newgate, New York, expect one chapter to have demon wolves. It seems like many people associated with Newgate, New York encounter demon wolves. It’s going to be a fun book full of action.