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In The Promised Land

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This story is No. 6 in the series "I Want YOU For the New Council!". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: Another “I Want YOU For The New Council!” story. Xander had to wait for the last day of April in order to have any chance of completing his latest recruiting attempt.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Miscellaneous > Myths & Legends(Current Donor)ManchesterFR131813023,52830 Apr 1130 Apr 11Yes
Disclaimer: I own nothing. All Buffy the Vampire Slayer characters and the song presented herein are the property of their original owners. The person depicted in the below story is not the real individual who bravely perished, but the mythic character created by his truly courageous act.

Knowing there were just seconds left, a desperate Xander Harris shouted, “This is the only chance you’ll ever get! There’s no other dimension where this is possible, including my own! In all the other realities, you get killed there, just like here! But if you agree, then everything comes together in the spell -- the exact date I had to match to jump here, the power of the myth you created, and the transfer of your loyalty from the company to the Council -- and you’ll come back with me!”

At the controls, an equally desperate man shouted back, “What about my family--?!”

Feeling hope burst inside his heart intermixed with the terror in his mind as Xander looked outside their transportation to see the disaster coming inexorably nearer, the New Council recruiter hastily reassured his companion, “Them, too! The song actually mentions your wife and kids, so they’ll get included in the spell! Now, will you make up your damn mind?!”

Glancing out to the front of his machine from the cab, the man in his coal-stained uniform had his face turn chalk-white at seeing how close death was, but his expression was still utterly stubborn, as he roared back at his unexpected visitor, “I’m not gonna do it until the very last second! My passengers won’t survive otherwise, so put your hand on mine on the throttle, and when I tell you, do that magic stuff then!”

Staggering forward in the lurching cab, Xander wound up next to the determined man, and did as he’d been told, knowing that there was no other way to take home with him the train engineer known as Casey Jones.

Come all you rounders if you want to hear
A story 'bout a brave engineer,
Casey Jones was the rounder's name
"Twas on the Illinois Central that he won his fame.

Casey Jones, he loved a locomotive.
Casey Jones, a mighty man was he.
Casey Jones run his final locomotive
With the Cannonball Special on the old I.C.

Casey pulled into Memphis on Number Four,
The engine foreman met him at the roundhouse door;
Said, "Joe Lewis won't be able to make his run
So you'll have to double out on Number One."

If I can have Sim Webb, my fireman, my Engine 382,
Although I'm tired and weary, I'll take her through.
Put on my whistle that come in today
Cause I mean to keep her wailing as we ride and pray.

Casey Jones, mounted the cabin,
Casey Jones, with the orders in his hand.
Casey Jones, he mounted the cabin,
Started on his farewell journey to the promised land.

They pulled out of Memphis nearly two hours late,
Soon they were speeding at a terrible rate.
And the people knew by the whistle's moan.
That the man at the throttle was Casey Jones.

Need more coal there, fireman Sim,
Open that door and heave it in.
Give that shovel all you got
And we'll reach Canton on the dot

On April 30, 1900, that rainy morn,
Down in Mississippi near the town of Vaughan,
Sped the Cannonball Special only two minutes late
Traveling 70 miles an hour when they saw a freight.

The Caboose Number 83 was on the main line,
Casey's last words were "Jump, Sim, while you have the time."
At 3:52 that morning came the fateful end,
Casey took his farewell trip to the promised land.

Casey Jones, he died at the throttle,
With the whistle in his hand.
Casey Jones, he died at the throttle,
But we'll all see Casey in the promised land.

His wife and three children were left to mourn
The tragic death of Casey on that April morn.
May God through His goodness keep them by His grace
Till they all meet together in that heavenly place.

Casey's body lies buried in Jackson, Tennessee
Close beside the tracks of the old I.C.
May his spirit live forever throughout the land
As the greatest of all heroes of a railroad man.

Casey Jones, he died at the throttle,
Casey Jones, with the whistle in his hand.
Casey Jones, he died at the throttle,
But we'll all see Casey in the promised land.

Author’s Note: The following is from Wikipedia:

“John Luther ("Casey") Jones (March 14, 1863 – April 30, 1900) was an American railroad engineer from Jackson, Tennessee, who worked for the Illinois Central Railroad (IC). On April 30, 1900, he alone was killed when his passenger train, the "Cannonball Express," collided with a stalled freight train at Vaughan, Mississippi, on a foggy and rainy night.

His dramatic death, trying to stop his train and save lives, made him a hero; he was immortalized in a popular ballad sung by his friend Wallace Saunders, an African American engine wiper for the IC.”

As noted, the original ballad is attributed to Wallace Saunders, with T. Lawarence Seibert and Eddie Newton for the music and words in the 1902 published version above.

The End

You have reached the end of "In The Promised Land". This story is complete.

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