The war is over between the North and South, but the battles at home are just beginning.
Emma Hawkins is a dedicated doctor in the little town of Crooked Creek, Montana Territory. Casey Latimer is a wounded soldier in search of a new home and a new beginning. When Casey, battered and bruised, quite literally falls at Emma's feet, she is bound by duty to help him. What happens next is something Emma never expected.
"Emma of Crooked Creek" is the first introductory installment of the Crooked Creek series set in post-Civil War Montana.
"Emma of Crooked Creek," the first short story in this series, was originally written for a short story contest, but while writing it, I realized I had the makings of a new series I very much wanted to write. Set in post-Civil War Montana Territory, the characters, time period, and setting came alive, and I'm looking forward to adding to this collection over time. Most of the stories in this series will be short stories or novelettes, but there will be at least two full-length novels, one of which will be a Christmas novel, and another an exciting battle-and-romance-filled western adventure. You'll have a chance to meet many characters from this unique Montana town, but for now, I hope you enjoy this little glimpse into Crooked Creek.
Be well, be kind, and enjoy!
Available in E-Book and Paperback
western historical fiction, western short story, western fiction, historical western fiction, western historical short story, western series
Crooked Creek, Montana Territory—September 1865
THUNDER WOKE EMMA from the first decent night sleep she’d had in months. She looked around at the dark room. It wasn’t the crash of thunder or even that grizzly her neighbor swore she saw last week. The front door of the one-room cabin reverberated as the pounding continued.
Emma reached for her husband’s old Colt Navy Revolver, the only thing he’d left behind when he went to fight and die in the war. Her husband had taught her how to use the pistol on the long wagon ride out west, but only small critters ever saw the bullets from the well-oiled gun. She pulled back the lever and pushed away the heavy quilts.
On bare feet, she moved along the wall to the small window by the front door. The moon was high but dim, and all she could see was the outline of a man hunched over. She stepped back when the thunderous knock was accompanied by a plea.
“Anyone in there?”
Emma considered not responding. No lamps were lit, but the remnants of logs burned in the fire. The man would not believe the cabin was empty, and if he did, he might decide to come in anyway.
“Who are you?” Emma quelled her nervousness.
“Thank God. Casey Latimer, ma’am.”
Emma slowly lifted the bar blocking the door. She moved a few paces back. “Come on in but be warned. I’m armed.”
Excerpt © MK McClintock
"Emma's story begins with gut-wrenching action that keeps you tailspinning to the very end."
"This was a very good short story. Set in Crooked Creek, Montana--post Civil War era, widowed Dr. Emma Hawkins is still tending to the wounds of soldiers. Will the lovely doctor's wounded heart be tended to?? This story really grabbed at me and I so want to read more!!"
—S. Laughner, Amazon review
"I loved the air of mystery infused within this short story and the raw grit displayed by the characters in this story."
—Debbie Keith, Amazon review
"M.K. I love your short stories and books. I want to know more about your characters and what happened to them. Looking forward to your next Crooked Creek short story. Don't take too long."
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