…with the results of AICN’s BRISCO COUNTY DVD giveaway. If you don’t recall the details of this contest, you can read more about it HERE.
Before we go any further, I’d like to thank everyone who took the time to submit stories. We received over 80 entries, and I’m amazed at the ingenuity and creativity of the entries.
They were wildly diverse. Some were grounded firmly in the “universe” of BRISCO COUNTY, while others traveled through time and space (one adventure found Brisco on alongside Quint on the deck of the Orca). Many featured historical figures (the Lumiere brothers and Thomas Edison for example). Some were mighty long, others were mighty short. Most were quite well written. The AICN staff was brutally murdered in a variety of ways (I was used as a human shield in one submission, and was apparently quite effective), and a surprising number of entries involved Harry and bestiality (poor, poor Comet). In a similar vein, Moriarty appeared in one saga as an…untrustworthy…stable boy. All of it was crazy stuff…all of it was fun stuff. Every entry was considered.
Here are the four submissions that ended up on the top of the list. Their authors have been notified via e-mail, and their sets will be dispatched imminently. ‘Tis a very nicely done package; tons of extras (episode commentaries with Bruce Campbell and Executive Producer Carlton Cuse (LOST), “Brisco’s Book of Coming Things” – which tracks the series’ references to forthcoming items and ideas, liner notes by Bruce Campbell, etc. This set was a long time coming, and is rather nicely done. Highly recommended.
Without further delay…
Brisco County Jr. rode into town on his horse. He tied up his horse and walked into Sheriff Herc's office.
Sheriff Herc greeted him. Brisco nodded back to him and sat down. "Let's not waste any time," Brisco said.
"What am I here for?" Herc enthusiastically said "There is a wanted man I want you to bring in."
Brisco raised his eyebrow and asked "Who?".
Herc said "His name is Whedon. Joss Whedon."
"What do you want with him?" Brisco asked.
Herc shifted uncomfortably and said "It's personal."
"This sounds mighty queer to me," Brisco added.
Herc got a little angry and shouted " I'm paying you quite handsomely to do the job. I don't want any questions asked."
Brisco nodded and stated "Whatever floats your boat."
Herc threw a wad of cash on the table. Brisco stuffed the cash into his pocket and went on his way.
Two weeks later, Brisco rode back into town. He had Whedon tied up on his horse.
Brisco tied up the horse and pulled Whedon off the horse. They both walked into Sheriff Herc's office. "Here he is," Brisco County said.
"It's you. It's really you. I have waited for this day for years," Herc whispered gleefully.
Whedon swallowed nervously and said "What do you want with me? Why am I here? I'm not a wanted man!"
"You are wanted by me," Herc secreted. A big, creepy grin spread across Herc's face. Brisco looked horrified at Herc's reaction. "I best be on my way" Brisco said.
"Thank you so much Brisco. I owe you," Herc exclaimed.
Herc turned his attention to Whedon and said "We have a lot to do."
As Brisco walked out of the office, the screams of Whedon were audible. "Brisco! Help me! Noooo!" Brisco ran back to his horse and rode out of town.
Whedon had not been heard from since.
Brisco painfully opened his eyes and looked around the room. The light was dim, but he could make out row upon row of shelves crowded with what appeared to be tiny statues. Many of them were enclosed in some kind of clear box, while the rest were posed in unnatural sexual positions.
He shook his head to clear the cobwebs, and tried vainly to remember how he had gotten here. He and Lord Bowler had made camp for the night… someone had ridden up… and…
He tried to grasp more of the details, but they proved elusive. Had he been drinking? Was there a woman involved? He attempted to stand, but realized he had been tightly bound.
Ah, he thought, definitely a woman.
“Thank God you’re awake,” a voice behind him said.
He whipped his head around to look at the speaker. Wearing a blue robe with what appeared to be dozens of little red S’s on it, was a chunky red haired man with the all-too familiar gleam of insanity in his eyes.
“I was afraid for a minute that it wasn’t going to work,” the man continued.
Knowing full well that it was best to keep a crazy person talking, Brisco decided to play along. “Well, ummm… it did. It worked great.” Try to be nonchalant. “So, uh… where the hell are we?” Smooth.
The man spread his arms. “This… is my Bat Cave. My Fortress of Solitude. My Shire. My Endor. My Skull Island.” He smiled broadly. “Home.” Brisco nodded as if the man had just said that the sky was blue, or that Socrates had a stick up his ass. “Well it’s quite a nice place you have here. Yep. Real nice. And how did we get here?”
The gleam in his eye got brighter. “Magic,” he replied. “The strongest kind. A geek’s magic. Because nobody believes more.”
“You don’t say,” Brisco said as he started to work at the knots that held him. “Well that’s quite an accomplishment.”
“Yes!” the geek exclaimed. “Mori didn’t even think it was going to work the first time. And then when I said we should do it again, he wanted to stop me. So I… well, I had to stop him.” With a vaguely sad expression, he turned his shaggy red head toward the far corner of the room.
Dreading what he knew he would see, Brisco looked at what had captured the geek’s attention. Lying on the floor was the body of a man in a black suit. He wasn’t sure what was more disturbing: the fact that a good part of the man’s head was missing, or that he was wearing bright pink slippers. He looked at the ruined face a little more closely. It didn’t look like a gunshot wound. It looked like… chewed?
“Sweet Jesus!” Brisco yelled. “Did you try to eat his head?”
The geek looked mildly ashamed. “Well, a little. But then I did skip lunch.” Brisco could only stare. “But never mind that. Look what I’ve got for you,” he said gesturing at a round object covered by a sheet.
Even before the geek pulled the sheet, Brisco knew from the size it could only be one thing. The Orb.
With a flourish, he pulled the sheet away, the spiky gold surface of the orb gleaming even in the dim light. “That’s right, it’s the real deal. No cheap plastic reproduction, this is the actual prop! And look, the batteries even still work!” He pulled one of the rods partway out of the orb, and grinned hideously as it began to glow.
Panic flared in Brisco’s mind. He had seen what those damn things could do. With one ferocious effort the last knot gave way and Brisco jumped to his feet. The geek jumped back in surprise. “Now listen. Red,” Brisco grunted as he picked up the heavy orb, “these things are dangerous. I’m taking it and getting the hell out of here.” He began edging towards the closest door.
“NO! Not that door!” the geek screamed. But it was too late. Brisco swung the door open and gasped with surprise as another man, bound the same way as he had been, came tumbling out. He wore a three cornered hat, a black mask over his eyes, a burgundy cloak… and nothing else. A red ball with straps wrapping around his head had been forced into his mouth. Seething, Brisco went to the man and pulled the ball out. He then pulled the mask off and froze.
The man had the same face as Brisco.
His eyes fluttered open weakly. “Please…” he croaked, “kill me. No more. He…” and then the light faded from his eyes forever.
Brisco looked from the man to the geek, his mind spinning. “He’s… he’s me.”
“No, that’s Jack Stiles,” the geek replied. “I mean yeah, it’s you… but different show.”
Brisco stood, looking at his dead twin. “So is that what you had in mind for me, tubby?” He asked as he advanced.
The geek held up his hands. “Now look, I wanted to stop. I really did. But he was all used up and I was hoping to bring Ash in too and...”
“Enough!” Brisco yelled as he lunged forward. He grabbed hold of him, but the geek twisted violently, slipping out of the robe and jumping away.
Brisco gaped at the sight of the man, greased skin glistening, wearing only a tiny white pair of britches with the strange word “GOONIES” written on them. He then noticed the foul smell coming from the robe and threw it down in disgust. It reminded him of the time a farmer had invited Brisco to share in a pig he had just slaughtered. The problem was, the concept of “just” seemed to be relative. The smell of bad ham had haunted him for weeks. But he had thought he had finally forgotten it… until now. With deliberate slowness, he picked up the orb and aimed it.
“Ha!” the geek yelled as he scampered from side to side. “If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a…”
The orb crashed into his face, crushing his skull. Then everything went black.
Brisco opened his eyes and found himself lying on a prairie looking up a Bowler and a Cherokee shaman. Bowler chuckled. “I told you those Cherokee ceremonies are nothing to mess with. I was starting to wonder if you were ever going to come ‘round.” His face turned serious. “So did you have any visions?”
Brisco sighed. “You could say that.”
The shaman grinned and clapped Brisco on the shoulder. He said a few words in Cherokee, and then went back to his horse.
“What did he say?” Bowler asked.
Brisco smiled. “He called me by my tribal name. Chin That Kills.” Sleepily, he began to rub his eyes, but then abruptly stopped, staring at his hand.
Brisco sniffed at his hand and grimaced. “Ugh. Bad ham.”
BEN TRI'S "THE TAXMAN COMETH"
Across the sun-baked landscape rode the rider on his swift horse. He was determined to accomplish his mission just as the two men behind him were determined to stop him. Merrick (as he was known to his victims) rounded a bend in the dry riverbed he had been following, but an old collapse in the bed walls stopped him short.
The two riders quickly overtook Merrick’s horse, but he had already reached the top of the 30 foot embankment – where he was promptly knocked unconscious by the largest legal text Socrates Poole had been carrying. Socrates looked down as Brisco County, Jr. and Lord Bowler both laughed and grimaced as they watched the mousy attorney stand over Merrick - and realized they had to split the reward.
“Well, Percy, looks like you’ve robbed your last bank. Did you honestly believe that Socrates was a woman bank teller? He has terrible fashion sense,” said Brisco, leading Merrick on a tether to the county jail.
“What kind of fool name is Socrates?” scowled Merrick.
“It’s the name of a philosopher and scholar,” replied Socrates proudly. “What kind of ‘fool name’ is Percy?”
“The last person to call me Percy died a quick death, and when I ever find my pa I’m gonna kill him too fer givin’ me that name!” Merrick growled.
“Whatever, Percy. Maybe you can start a letter writing campaign to find him from prison,” quipped Bowler.
As they arrived at the local jail, they were greeted by the sheriff and a man none of them had seen before, but who’s attire screamed federal agent.
“Another good job you two,” said the sheriff. “Appears Percy took up robbing in the wrong county.”
“Don’t call me Percy!” yelled Merrick.
“Shutup Percy,” replied Brisco, Bowler, and Socrates in unison.
“Also, Socrates helped,” said Brisco.
“Brisco, Up until you said that, we had a two-way split,” remarked Bowler, as Socrates gave him a glare.
“Uh, Brisco, Bowler,” said the sheriff, scratching his head sheepishly, “this here man is from the federal government. He has something to discuss with you.”
“Hello, gentlemen. My name is Agent Harry Knowles of the Office of the Commissioner of Revenue. As you may or may not have heard, Congress passed a new income tax on August 28th, 1894, which has brought you two to my attention.”
“How so?” asked Bowler.
“Well,” replied Agent Knowles, “you two exceeded your income tax bracket, and you came up short on your duties to the government.”
“Tax – bracket?” Pondered Bowler. “Sounds more like some kind of racket. What do you take us for?”
“I assure you, I’m quite serious, and I am here to collect,” replied Agent Knowles.
“Okay, that’s quite enough,” interjected Brisco. “Bowler, Socrates, let’s go and leave this clown on the stoop. Sheriff, we’ll be back later for the reward.” Brisco handed Merrick’s reins over to the sheriff.
“To leave would be a mistake. I always get my man, or in this case, men,” said the agent.
The trio chose to ignore this comment, and rode back towards home.
“Guverment. Always trying to mess something up. Heck, if we had a decent guverment, we wouldn’t have to catch all the bad guys for ‘em!” remarked Bowler.
“Still, we should have stayed and listened to what he had to say,” replied Socrates.
Brisco was about to break into the argument when Comet whinnied and turned him around. Off in the distance, they saw a rider closing fast. “Uh, boys. Looks like Mr. Knowles didn’t take no for an answer,” said Brisco. “We better speed it up.” As they increased their pace, they shot the occasional glance backwards. Agent Knowles was still closing on them.
“Guys, why don’t we just stop and talk this out with him?” asked Socrates.
Both Brisco and Bowler ignored him, steeling themselves and staring ahead, willing their horses to go faster. Suddenly, Socrates’ face brightened. “Why I am I even running? I’m not the one who broke federal laws,” and with that, Socrates abruptly slowed down to a comfortable trot. The agent barely looked aside as he rode on by.
“Comet,” Brisco yelled at the horse, “are you going to let some government horse beat you?”
With that, Comet put on a burst of speed, with Bowler close behind. The agent however, still closed in. Paying so much attention to the man following them caused them to lose focus on where they were going, and they ended up in the same dry wash that had boxed Merrick in earlier. They stopped and left the horses to climb the side.
“They are NOT getting my hard-earned money,” grumbled Bowler as they climbed.
“I’m with you on this one, Bowler,” said Brisco. “Heck, that new law sounds practically unconstitutional.”
Suddenly, both men were encircled with rope, and pulled backwards. They ended face-up looking at the agent’s downturned gaze. “Gentlemen, the government would like its money now,” Knowles declared.
Just as Brisco and Bowler were about to tell Agent Knowles exactly what orifice to get his money from, another rider came upon the scene. “Agent Knowles?” he asked.
“Yes, I’m him.”
“Telegram,” said the rider, handing him the letter.
Knowles read it over, “Hmm, I see. Gentlemen, it appears the Supreme Court has declared the income tax law of last year unconstitutional.”
“I told you!” Brisco said to Bowler.
“Looks like the Court just saved you both a quarter,” said Knowles.
“A quarter?” mouthed Brisco and Bowler, looking at each other incredulously.
“Good day gentlemen,” replied Knowles, mounting his horse and riding off.
The message boy waited as Brisco and Bowler shrugged off the rope and stood up. “Yea, whattaywant?” said Brisco defiantly.
“Well, somebody needs to pay me for the telegram. It’s fifty cents.”
Brisco and Bowler gave each other a grimace, reached into their pockets, and each gave the boy a quarter. The boy thanked them, mounted up, and rode back to town.
“Lousy guverment! Lousy telegraph company!” yelled Bowler to the sky.
“You know, that really echoes,” remarked Socrates, cleaning his ears above them on the top of the bank. “Now, if you both don’t mind, could we go? It seems like we were just here, and I have a book with a broken spine to prove it.”
As they rode off, Brisco commented, “You know, they should really tighten up that bureaucracy. Internalize the department or something.”
“Yea, like some kind of internal revenue service,” replied Bowler.
“Yes, exactly!” said Brisco. Socrates simply rolled his eyes as they rode back to town.
As the dust blew
He heard Harry spew,
"You SUCKED in Evil Dead Part 2".
Lord Bowler did too.
Brisco said, "Thanks for the review."