Although Ben Cartwright knew his brother Daniel was not easy to get along with, the passing years brought with them a nostalgic longing to reconnect with the family he’d left behind in Ohio. When word reaches Ben that Daniel has recently suffered difficult heartaches, he invites the man to spend the summer on the Ponderosa, never imagining the trouble Daniel’s presence will bring.
In addition to Daniel’s visit that soon has Ben recalling why he’d never been close to his eldest sibling, is trouble from a neighbor bent on revenge. A summer Ben had been looking forward to, quickly changes to one that contains nothing but challenges, disagreements, and worries for his youngest son’s safety.
~ ~ ~
“I’m not too tired, Pa. I. . . .uh. . .I. . .well Pa. . .I. . . ” Joe’s eyes flicked from his father to his brothers. He hated the thought of being a tattletale and not working this out for himself. Even more, he hated the thought of once again being perceived as the son and the little brother who always needed to be bailed out of trouble. But the hard truth of the matter was; he had no idea how to put a stop to Paul and Charlie’s pranks without his family’s help.
Joe’s eyes returned to his father. He worried his lower lip a moment. “It’s. . .it’s the Dunns, Pa.”
“The Dunns. Paul and Charlie. They’re the ones behind it.”
“Behind what, son?”
“Behind everything!” Joe knew he shouldn’t lose his temper, but he was tired, and his head still hurt, and he was sick of being kicked around by Paul and Charlie. “Behind me endin’ up in that hole today, and behind me takin’ that tumble off Cochise a while back, and then Cochise disappearing on me, and Adam’s lost hammer, and me gettin’ jumped by those boys in that alley--”
“What boys?” Pa asked. “When?”
“The day Uncle Daniel arrived. In the alley behind the Silver Dollar. A buncha miners’ kids. Paul and Charlie put ‘em up to it. Na. . .someone who knows it on good authority told me so.”
~ ~ ~
As summer begins to wane, seemingly innocent events bring increasing danger to Little Joe. Danger that lurks closer to home than Ben ever imagined.
“Sacrificial Lamb” is posted in 6 parts of approximately 50 pages each for ease of downloading.