Angelina slept with one eye open.
The Comanches had conducted some deadly raids on the little settlement lately. The Mexicans had invaded again and took hostage the city of San Antonio, only seventy miles to the south. Mountain lions and bears were depleting the already meager supply of livestock. Half the population had fled.
These things alone would have caused consternation for Angelina, but there was something else in the works that had her at wit’s end. Twice-widowed, she lay alone on a hard bed in her otherwise empty shotgun-style boarding house, tossing and turning.
The President lived there as a guest for a while but had returned to Washington-on-the-Brazos for an emergency session. It was on this event that her troubled mind focused. She suspected that what came out of that meeting of the Seventh Congress could mean the end of her life on the frontier. It permeated her dreams and she found herself waking several times a night, her heart pounding in her throat.
When she awoke on this night though, December 29th, 1842, it was not from a dream. It was from the real sound of wagon-wheels and horses.
She leapt from her bed and rushed outside, barefooted and still in her night-clothes. Pulling away from the General Land Office were three wagons and twenty men on horseback.
“They’re here!” she screamed, running through the streets, “the scoundrels are here!”
When she reached the cannon at town-center, she turned it towards the fleeing party and struck the flint. An orange fireball lit up the night and the wall behind the group exploded in rubble.
The next morning, after an eighteen mile chase, the official archives of the Republic of Texas were retrieved.
Thanks to the vigilant alertness of Angelina Eberly, Austin would remain the capital of Texas.