The Shiloh Trilogy
Disgraced Federal officer James Harper must redeem his honor and face down his enemies if he intends to stay in the Union Army and avoid his scheduled court martial. Recruited by General Grant’s spymaster, Harper must prove that whore monger Franklin Bosley is a Confederate conspirator—a man who has no scruples, and will do anything it takes to see to his own “cause” above all else.
Harper realizes that Bosley and his men are a threat to the Union Army—but that’s not all. Maggie, the woman who has broken through Harper’s emotional walls, is also in immediate danger. Harper has to act fast or there will be more deaths on his conscience—and Maggie’s is one he couldn’t bear.
Meanwhile, indentured saloon girl Katie Malloy must find her own way to escape Bosley—or die. Finding solace in the arms of one of Harper’s men whom she has come to love, she realizes in one terrible moment that she cannot depend on him to rescue her—she must do that herself, even if it means murder.
Once at odds with Lieutenant Harper, Corporal Gustav Magnusson begins to understand that Harper will see this mission through or die trying. He’s going to need Magnusson’s help—but who can they trust? There may be just one way out alive—if they can both survive long enough to put their daring plan into action for HARPER’S RESCUE…
A small paddle-wheeler emerged from behind the far side of the wharf boats. It made its way along the outside of the blazing boats, taking care to stay at a safe distance. As more of the boat moved into view, the crew attacked the fires with water shot from nozzles the size of small cannons mounted on pedestals, far more powerful than those ashore. The paddle-wheeler used its side-paddles in combination to hold the craft in place against the river current. Its hoses doused the flames on the far side of each blazing craft.
The fiercest blazes rose where none of the hoses could reach, inside the deck houses of the two doomed craft. Before the fireboat reached the end of the wharf, flames burst through portholes and doors on the burning boats. These re-ignited the stores along the exterior decks. No one was organizing parties to fight the infernos inside their deckhouses. “I guess they’ll let the boats burn themselves out,” Harper said.
The two longboats had returned. They pulled alongside the fireboat. After a short conference, the crews on two of the hoses redirected their coverage to the foredeck of the leading inferno. Under cover of this spray, the longboat crew attached a hawser. Firefighters on the wharf braved the heat to cast off the lines and the two longboats worked in tandem to haul the blazing wreck into the channel, away from the town. Once clear of the wharf and the undamaged craft anchored nearby, the tow boats set the doomed vessel adrift.
“What will happen to the boat now, James?”
“I’m not a riverman, but I’d guess—”
A brilliant light flashed the entire scene into black-and-white silhouette. A second later:
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