Anticipating the November 9 release of Walnut Street: Phantom Rider, I am continuing to share excerpts from two chapters every Thursday via my weekly News Blog at
As a preview of coming attractions this fall, here are some scenes from Chapters 5 and 6:
From Chapter 5, “Papa Mayfield’s Treasure Box”
A discussion of the ranch’s different kinds of horses occupied the lunch feast of barbecued-beef sandwiches, potato salad, green beans with bacon
bits, a huge homemade apple pie—compliments of neighboring ranchers and friends Mr. and Mrs. Hollister— vanilla ice cream, and all the milk the
kids could drink.
Catherine dug into her thick slice of pie, then touched Mrs. Mayfield’s arm and whispered, “I think I’m already getting to like it here.” The two exchanged big smiles.
After eating the last bite of pie on his plate, Lanny set his fork down and asked, “Mr. Mayfield, do you have any information here at the ranch about Papa Mayfield?”
“You must have read my mind, Lanny,” he replied. “Ben and I are planning to show you detectives Papa’s big treasure box as soon as you’re finished eating.”
From Chapter 6, “Horseback Ride to Cody”
[The six detectives] immediately spotted a beefy, middle-aged man in a cowboy hat sitting at a desk behind the big front counter. His nameplate
identified him as “Parker Wells, Assayer.”
“Well, hello, Ben and Gracie,” Mr. Wells said over the top of his newspaper as he rocked in his squeaky wooden chair. “What brings you kids in here
today? And who are your friends?”
“Hi, Mr. Wells,” Ben said with a wave.
He and Gracie introduced the detectives by their names but left out their detective titles. During their ride, Lanny had asked them not to draw attention to their case. “We have some questions
for you.” Ben looked at Lanny, who took his cue.
The boy got right to the point. “Mr. Wells, we’re wondering if you have a record of the claim for Papa Mayfield’s mine from the 1870s.”