I am very busy these days and I’m afraid I haven’t had the time to write that I used to have. Fear not, I will update “Race Against Time” and likely the first two volumes as well between 2019 and 2021. It sounds far off, but, actually it is not.
Today I am writing about a character we all seem to love and hate at once. None other than The Big Baritone himself, Tracy Douglas Allen. He’s something else in lots of ways and most of them, well, are lousy. But, his lack of character and general spinelessness is not what I’m here to talk about right now. It’s something else.
I am not sure if this will come as a good or bad surprise, but I’m sending Mr. Allen into the realm of missing persons. Whether that’s permanent or not is up for grabs but as of now, I’m making that a part of my changes coming to “Race Against Time”.
Here’s what is going around in my head:
The rather plain, but amazingly strong, wife of the famed Tracy Douglas Allen, Anna, is now divorced from him, and happily married to another man. The couple live in The Dakota Territory (during the story it was not yet officially established but I’m giving reference to the area), and have added their own children, twin boys, to their family. All four of Anna’s children with Tracy are also with them, and frankly, none of them have any desire to see or hear from their father. Read more about Anna in my blog post about her.
But a problem about the divorce began to haunt Tracy day and night. He had not received the money he was granted. Not all of it.
How the divorce came about in the first place was completely Providential. Anna and the children had been situated on the sprawling ranch they owned in TDT for a few years, when severe weather conditions prevented Tracy from traveling there from New York to see them for a full 18 months. When he arrived, he was shocked to find Anna heavily pregnant. It seemed that ranch manager and Anna had formed a relationship, and naturally wanted to marry. That is what put Tracy in a powerful position when it came to negotiating the terms of the divorce. Anna, hoping to marry the father of her unborn child (or twins as it turned out to be), agreed to pay Tracy enough money to make him live a life of ease for the rest of his days.
However, even though there was a more than generous amount written into the divorce agreement, only a trickle of the money ever found its way to Tracy’s bank. He almost couldn’t believe it, but that little mouse of a girl he had married had turned into a conniving tigress.
Not allowing this to go unanswered, Tracy decides to venture out to TDT once again to speak in person to Anna, and apply to her honor. She had been a stand-up kind of lady all her life, and so if the money was delayed, he assumed there was an error somewhere. At least, that’s how he would put it to her.
This is where Tracy Douglas Allen goes off the map. He leaves Richmond, Virginia, on a train heading west. And that’s where his story ends. He was supposed to get off in Chicago, connect with another train and then finally a stage coach, but, he never reached the Chicago train station. His manservant, who arrived a few days ahead of him, waited and waited, then at last frantically contacted the local police.
But no answers were found.
On a rainy Spring day, The Big Baritone boarded a passenger train in Richmond, Virginia, bound for Chicago. He had a first-class, private compartment, with all the finest appointments. During the trip, waiters and other staff were in and out many times to ensure Tracy’s comfort. However, about an hour before reaching Chicago, a waiter entered the compartment and found that his well-heeled passenger was not there. After fifteen minutes he went back again, but still did not find him. Sensing something was wrong, he alerted his manager and a search was conducted.
But Tracy Douglas Allen, all 6ft. 5 inches, 240 pounds of him, had vanished into thin air – and it was aboard a moving train.
That’s where I will leave it. An unsolved mystery.
Thanks to all of you for your kind support of my work!