white wolf - part 17

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Their 4 horses were tethered loosely near them and a splendid looking appaloosa mare was with the other horses. John thought he could possibly nail all 4 with his bow but there was a good chance one might escape. So he waited with infinite patience, lying on the ice cold ground until darkness. This high up in the mountains, night came quickly so the wait was short.  He tried to keep his limbs warm by flexing them. The 4 warriors built up their fire and it crackled loudly giving John a chance to slowly retrace his steps. John relaxed under a tree and ate a sparse meal. He made Snowy stay near the horse while he moved carefully back towards the men. He left the rifle behind, instead carrying the tomahawk and bow. Once the fire died down to just embers and the men stopped moving, he crept closer. It was freezing now, the sort of cold that seeps into your bones but John was immune to the icy conditions. He kept rubbing and tensing his arms and legs to keep the blood flowing. As he got to within a dozen paces of the men, he removed the thick gloves and grabbed the tomahawk. Remaining crouched in the darkness, he studied the men to ensure they were asleep.

The rage was building inside him but at the moment it was controlled. It was a strange primeval feeling, a lust for blood that he'd never experienced before. Every single bit of energy and concentration was focussed on the closest man as he readied himself and let the rage rise. He moved with blinding speed reaching the warrior without making a sound. The double bladed weapon glittered at the apex of its arc then came flashing down to bury itself in the man's throat. Without pausing John swept the tomahawk into the next victim, splitting his head open. The final two men never knew what hit them as John moved silently but with deadly efficiency despatching them in the blink of an eye. The wild rage erupted to the surface and he continued to swing the razor sharp blade in a sustained burst of fury. Then he held the dripping weapon aloft and howled with anger. The terrible sound made Snowy spring to his feet expecting an enraged wolf to come rushing through the night at any moment.

John collected his mare and released the other ponies then found a small box canyon to hide his two horses in. He and the wolf clambered up to a lofty ledge and waited. From this high vantage point he could see far into the distance and it was close enough to the dead men to allow an easy shot. When the other warriors came looking for their missing friends, John would see them long before they arrived so he lay back and waited.

Rain Bird woke with a start, he sat up and wiped the sweat from his brow then looked around his tepee. It was nearly dawn as he tried to fathom this strange dream or vision. He had seen his friend White Wolf transform into a savage wolf and slaughter the sleeping men in a frenzied attack which made Rain Bird shiver. He was a hardened warrior and had seen a lot in battle but this vision scared him. To see his good friend smashing those warriors to pieces was a truly frightening thing as he wasn't sure John was still human. This dream came so soon after his other vision a few nights ago, where he saw Morning Light and the children floating up through the air and beginning their journey to the Great Spirit land. He sat alone in his medicine tepee replaying the dreams in his head. The one thing he was certain of was his friend and family were either dead or in serious trouble.

Later in the morning Rain Bird went to speak to Standing Bear to tell him of the visions. He hoped his friend might know what to make of the dreams and whether they should tell the chief about them. Standing Bear was as troubled as Rain Bird about the dreams especially since he respected the medicine man's accuracy with these sorts of things. Many times in the past Rain Bird had been proven correct with his prophesies and people said it was a sign of someone who was close to the Great Spirit.

They went together to see Two Moons first and his reaction was similar to Standing Bear's, he also knew the skill of the medicine man and it was with great sadness they approached Little Wolf. The Chief could tell from their stern faces he was about to hear bad news. However the news still shocked him and he felt a massive loss, it was like a physical blow and it took a while before he gained some semblance of calm. He thanked the men and simply said "I hope you are wrong this time Rain Bird." In his heart though he suspected the vision was probably correct so he went to find his wife and tell her the bad news.

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