The three months went by quickly and I was happy with purchasing the trading post.
Jake and Asharlie left for their gold stream.
Spring was here and it's a busy time so I employed Ashley Farrell the son of Bruce the blacksmith.
He was fifteen and strong, moving goods and stacking shelves was no problem for him.
Two weeks into spring saw new arrivals and with them came the governor.
I had not seen Mike in over three years he had aged and didn't look well we had a great talk over lunch.
He said that this was my last visit here I have a heart condition and doc Langdon said I must back off.
I am resigning as governor and this is my last official duty I will be naming the town at a ceremony in a few days it will be then known as Settletown.
I said what a great name for a new town it has made me settle down and certainly feel like home.
A lot of people have settled on the outskirts of the town now and we have a dairy farm a pig and poultry farm.
Mike said he was keeping track of the town's progress and thought that naming the town would be a fitting end to his duties as governor.
I asked him what he intends to do now and he said that's up to the doc.
It was a great success the naming ceremony and well attended by people from all over.
I attended a dinner at the hotel that evening to honour the governor he retired to his room early in the night and was found dead in his bed the next morning.
What a great man and friend he was he did so much for his country and helped countless people in many ways.
He may have just held on to name this town which was created by him.
Three weeks later Daisy came to me and said Neil went out hunting two days ago.
He hasn't returned she said that she didn't know where he went and he was alone he only took that old bow with him.
I said that I would put a crew together and start a search at first light a twelve-man crew searched for five days without finding any sign of him.
I was exhausted when I returned to town as I pushed myself through my arthritis pain every daylight hour to find my long-time friend. Daisy was devastated so I said we will have to find Jake he knows some Indian trackers.
I will rest tomorrow then try to find Jake Daisy said do you know where he is I said not really all I know is that he's at a stream up in the hills. I can try to contact him with smoke signals.
I went searching for Jake and Brice came with me after two days along the river trail I started sending SOS smoke signals.
The following day Jake found us after hearing the news he said to go back to town I will meet you there in a couple of days with the trackers. It felt like a week but Jake and two trackers arrived in town after three days Jake questioned Daisy but she wasn't much help so Jake just assumed that Neil would go to his best hunting spots.
Jake saw me limping and said that I would only slow them down and told me to stay behind he said that the trackers have the best chance on foot at their own pace.
It was going to be difficult because Neil was such a great stalker and walked carefully not breaking twigs as he went.
Two weeks passed and Daisy still clung on to the hope that she would see Neil again.
She said he had been missing now for over three weeks but if anyone can survive out there it's him.
I had to agree as I recalled all the tough times we all went through together.
Jake returned with Neil set up in a sling attached to his horse with two poles he was in a bad way had both legs and a wrist broken. He was in a lot of pain and drifting in and out of consciousness.
Daisy finally broke down and found it difficult to deal with what happened she said did he get attacked by a bear.
Jake said no he fell fifty feet down a hole I think it was a volcanic vent he shot an elk in the side of the neck and was chasing it and they both feel down the hole.
The elk must have broken its back in the fall but lived so Neil survived by drinking a little bit of its blood each day.
He said he dragged himself on top of the elk then removed the arrow from its neck drank some blood then plugged the hole with his thumb then lying on top of the elk also kept him warm until it died four days ago.