MYSTERY OF THE MURDERED BADMAN [Hollywood Cowboy Detectives] by Darryle Purcell

Movie PR man Curly Woods has helped his friend cowboy star Ken Maynard save the world, now Curly has to help him save—Ken Maynard!

When Woods finds Maynard passed out behind the St. Francis Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard with a bloody bayonet in his hand, lying next to the lifeless body of Adrian Comstock, a hateful ham who specialized in playing bad guys and had been stabbed through the heart, the PR flack knew the he had to act fast. If not, the hot-tempered Maynard would quickly become the L.A.P.D.'s easiest pick for a fall guy.

With sirens approaching, Woods wipes the bayonet clean and drags Maynard to his car. To clear Maynard, the two Hollywood Cowboy Detectives have their work cut out for them. They must find out who really killed the veteran western-film villain, and why that person wants to frame Maynard for the murder. But to solve the case, they discover they need to solve the disappearance of silent-movie vamp, Viola Flag, who vanished just as she was scheduled to return to the screen in a big budget vampire film. For the key to the mystery of the badman's slaying lies in the past, and they must find it before Maynard finds himself in tomorrow's headlines, looking out at his public behind bars, branded a killer and worse.

This short story, "Mystery of the Murdered Badman" is another action filled, tongue-in-cheek, B-movie, pulp-magazine romp through the deadly streets of 1930s Hollywood.

Illustrated by the author, former newspaper editorial cartoonist Darryle Purcell.

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