Bullet Joe Sawyer was the star goaltender for the Montreal Mounteds, see, but then he went to war and lost his nerve, as happens, and when he got back to guarding goals, it just wasn’t the same. With all those pucks piling up behind him, Montreal just had to let him go, which is how he ended up suiting up for their rivals, the Red Ants, in their big game against — yes, that’s right — the Mounteds.
Staggering to this feet, though he tottered and sagged against the goal post, Bullet Joe faced the surging forms in front. He tossed aside the stub of his hockey stick as useless, and extended gloved hands, spreading the fingers wide. A woman’s hysterical, high-pitched scream carried above the human battery of sound. “Stop them, Bullet Joe!”
Electrifying. I’ll let you guess how Harold Sherman’s novelette “Bullet Joe, Goalie” ends, and who gets the girl — yes, there’s a girl.
Hockey’s not your thing? In 1928, readers of Top-Notch Magazine could take their pick of torrid tales: also included in this mid-winter issue were stories of cowboys (“Blazing Six-Guns”) and canny courtroom stenographers (“All is Not Wasted That Leaks”). There’s even something for fans of big, striped-game hunting. I haven’t read that particular story all the way through, it’s true, but I like to think that the title suggests that this is a grasslands tale told from the point-of-view of the wily quarry as he outsmarts the bumbling human hunter, gets his gun, teaches him not to be such a bloodthirsty idiot. It’s called “Zebra Guile.”