Don’t Drop The Ball: The Heaven’s Gate Fan Fiction Prequel

Heaven's Gate

My name is Miguel Cauldwell. My father, Claud Cauldwell, was the greatest juggler on the east coast. Bowling pins, top hats, infants – you name it, he juggled it. I remember as a child being endlessly entertained by his juggling, even when I was one of the objects being tossed into the air.

But all that fun ended after a freak accident involving a meat cleaver. No, he wasn’t juggling knives. Rather, he was at the butcher’s purchasing a hunk of prime rib to celebrate his mother’s 73rd birthday when he slipped on a wet tile and slid into the counter. He was fine, actually – his hands weren’t broken – so he got up and tried to laugh off his clumsiness, turning his palms upward in that “what can you do?” gesture. That’s when a meat cleaver fell off the wall and chopped off his left hand.

From that day forward, my father forced me to become the most famous juggler on the east coast. I resisted, naturally. Children never like their parents to tell them what to do. Still, I practiced every day. Apples, at first, and only later graduating to tomatoes. Life in the 19th century was pretty boring, so my only real source of entertainment was juggling.

I eventually got tired of my father waving his left hook at me, telling me to “Juggle harder!”, so when I was 34 I packed up and headed west. I was determined to become the best juggler on the west coast – a title at the time held by Josephine Reekes of Casper, Wyoming. I knew that the only way to become the best juggler on the west coast was a good ol’ fashioned juggle-off. So when I arrived in Casper, I set to work. I needed to practice. I needed to be at the top my game to topple Josephine. I found a tiny one-bedroom apartment facing some sort of bar/cockfight arena/community center where a bunch of eastern European immigrants seemed to be having a hard time. I didn’t have time for their woes – I had my own struggles to deal with. So while they were organizing, I was doing the one thing I could do better than anything else: I was juggling.

Hudson Hawk 2: The Fan Fiction Sequel

Hudson Hawk Fan Fiction


The Hawk glided coolly into the coffee shop, his signature trench coat flapping behind him like a tuft of unruffled feathers. It had been one year since that ugly business in Italy with the Mayflowers, the CIA, and Leonardo Davinci; and he was flying high. He and Andy McDowell were engaged to be married and, though she had to quit being a nun, he was sure the big guy would forgive him if it were true love.

“Tommy,” Hawk bellowed, dropping his trademark fedora on the bar. “Get me a cappuccino. Extra foam.”

Coming right up, buddy O-Mine,” Tommy called. Within minutes the steaming hot drink was in front of Hudson. He took a pause to enjoy the aroma and, after tasting the drink, Hawk spit it out.

“What’s this?” he asked. “Nuts and chocolate?”

“It’s the new house special. The Davinci Code. What do you think?

“What do I think? What do I think?”  Hawk blustered. “I think you should get this Baby Ruth outta here and get me a cappuccino.”

As Tommy turned around to make the correct drink, Hudson felt a warm breath on his neck and a cold gun barrel in his back.

“It’s a shame that name is already taken, Mr. Hawk.”

“Is that a gun in my back or are you just happy to see me?”

“A gun. A Magnum. The same gun my father once used.”

“So you’re not happy to see me?”

The mysterious man put his hand on Hawk’s shoulder and turned him around. As the men faced each other, Tommy returned with the cappuccino, spotted the gun and let the cup fall to the floor.

“No,” Hawk whined. “Not my cappuccino.”

“I’m sorry,” Tommy blustered. “He’s got a gun. I got startled.”

“Startled? Startled? It’s just a gun.”

“A gun leveled at your head, Mr. Hawk.” the stranger whispered, pointing the gun higher.

“Do I know you, pal?” Hawk asked.

“Not yet. But you knew my father,” the stranger hissed. “James Coburn.”

“Father? That lunatic had a kid?” Tommy asked.

“Don’t be rude, fat bartender,” the mystery man said. “I only really need him.”

“Sorry, I’m retired,” Hawk chimed in.

“You killed my father, destroyed my team, ruined my life,” the stranger said. “You’re not retired until I retire you.”

“Team? You weren’t one of those candy bar fruit cakes, were you?”

“The candy bars were my compatriots.”

“Who were you?” Hawked asked. “Nuts for nuts?”

While you were dicking around in Vatican City, I was serving time in a Russian gulag. While you were murdering my friends, I was plotting my escape. And while you’ve been planning your wedding, Mr. Hawk, I’ve been planning my revenge.”

“So was your code name chocco talk-o?”

“Baby Ruth, at your service.”

“Huh, because you’re nutty?” Hawk quipped.

“Because I always hit it out of the park,” the stranger said. “And speaking of parks, you are going to help me liberate some gold from Gorsky Park.”

“Sorry, not looking for a hat trick,” Hawk said, slyly removing his fedora from the bar and slipping it on is head.

“Funny, but when I picked up your blushing bride,” the stranger said, smiling. “She might have been out of the habit;  but she was very interested in the hat trick of survival.”