by Gary Leon Zimmer

Meet Harry Stone

Harry Stone leads a comfortable life in the small town of Intrepid, Texas. He is a gifted gambler. His success is attributed to clandestine manipulation of the cards. He is famous throughout the Southwest. He has money, women and stature.

He is heralded as a hero by the local citizens of Intrepid.

Kitty Leroy, part owner of the Mint Saloon in Deadwood, South Dakota, travels to Intrepid determined to unravel the mystery of Harry Stone’s winning ways. Stone accepts her challenge but in truth he would rather the trim and pretty Leroy simply sit on his lap. But Kitty comes to town armed to the teeth with a six-gun on each hip and a Bowie knife threaded onto her belt. Stone thought playing poker against her might be safer.

Kitty’s fate becomes known and a new triumvirate of poker luminaries begin to make their way to Intrepid. Alice Ivers, better known as Poker Alice alights from a stage in Intrepid determined to expose  Harry Stone for the cheat that he is! Just prior to Poker Alice stepping down from the stage a magnificent rumor begins to spread. Had Poker Alice been preceded by the most famous lawman, gunfighter and gambler the West had ever known? His fame for gambling, gun fighting and enforcing the law in the frontier towns of Dodge City and Tombstone had made his name a household word; a name both feared and respected throughout the West!

Was Wyatt Earp present in the Palladium Poker Palace awaiting a game with Harry Stone? Would Poker Alice be a third player in the game? Harry Stone, Poker Alice and Wyatt Earp?

And then another whisper suddenly became a reality. Lottie Deno?

Carlotta Thompkins was on a stagecoach just one day behind Poker Alice! Carlotta was better known as Lottie Deno.

Lottie was the poker playing queen of lawless Fort Griffin, Texas. Bank robbers, stagecoach robbers and cattle rustlers used Fort Griffin as a refuge from law enforcement. Lottie was respected in the saloons of Fort Griffin. She was always armed and was comfortable among the tough and tumble types of the town.

She was now Lottie Deno! She’d won so much money from the bank robbers and cattle rustlers of Fort Griffin they had begun to call her Lottie Dinero. She shortened it to Lottie Deno and had it changed legally.

Surely, either Alice, Wyatt or Lottie would leave Harry Stone bereft of his money and naked on the main street of Intrepid!

But there were four other actors on the stage and each would play into the finality of Harry Stone’s fate.

Yes, Harry Stone’s fate!