Doc Ch. 08bykingkey©
When I awoke, I was still disoriented. Had what I seen in the sweat lodge been right, or was I just dreaming? I'm not religious, but whatever it was I had seen, it seemed to answer most of my questions about what I was doing here. I went to find Grandpa and found him sitting with Red Cloud.
I approached them and asked, "Uncle Henry, can we walk and talk some?"
Getting up, he followed me down by the river. I tried to ask him about what I had seen in the sweat lodge and found that I couldn't say anything about it. Puzzled as he saw me apparently fumble for words, he asked, "What's wrong?"
I replied, "I was going to ask about the things I saw in my dream, but somehow I can't ask anything."
"There's something about spirit dreams. They are personal and can't be shared. To each person they are described to, the images mean different things. Now, without telling me what was actually in the dream, describe to me what you think it means to you."
"What I understood is that I was brought here to help both the Indians and the white man with my medicine, and by bringing justice, using my law enforcement background. I also gathered that I don't need to worry about changing the future because as we make changes, reality will branch and leave the future I came from safe.''
Grandpa looked thoughtful. "Hmmm ... We weren't so far off after all. Based on what we already talked about, that sounds about right."
I would have liked to talk about it in more detail, but about that time we heard a commotion back in camp and went to see what was going on. When we got there we saw that a fairly large group of about 35 warriors had ridden up in front of Red Cloud. Somehow, I just knew their leader was Crazy Horse.
We were moving closer to see what was going on when some of the braves noticed us and started to advance toward us menacingly.
Red Cloud shouted, "STOP! You don't treat a guest that way!"
Crazy Horse replied, "Guest? Since when is the white eyes the guest of the Lakota? I see Hawk, but who is this other white eyes you call guest?"
Red Cloud explained, "That is Dirty Hand. You played with him as a boy."
Crazy Horse replied, "That was a long time ago. He is not a boy now. Where has he been?"
"He has been in army and now is white man's medicine man. He helped Running Deer when she broke her arm."
"What is he still doing here?"
"He is marrying Running Deer and Little Doe today."
This caused quite a commotion amongst the new arrivals and one brave suddenly ran off, away from the others. In a few minutes I saw him dragging Little Doe away from the lodge she shared with Running Deer.
Angered that he would treat any woman like that, and especially one of mine, I didn't think, I just reacted. I ran over to him and spun him to the ground. As he fell he released Little Doe, allowing her to scamper to safety.
My new enemy jumped back up and pulled a knife on me, but I was ready for him. I waited for his first lunge then batted it away, and stepped inside his reach. Following through, I hit him straight in the nose, breaking it. The resulting blurring of his vision made it hard for him to see. Then, still holding his knife arm, I levered it forcing him to either drop the knife or I would break that arm.
He dropped the knife, but I kept the hold on him, only releasing it, and him, when a visibly angry Red Cloud shouted, "ENOUGH!"
Speaking directly to the brave, he demanded, "Why you dishonor my camp this way?"
"Little Doe belong to me. Want her for my wife."
"Little Doe don't want to marry you. She tell you no many times.
"Little Doe and Running Deer belong to Dirty Hand. Him traded fair for them and take as true wives today."
"I fight for them."
"Did fight. Lost."
"Not let her marry white eyes. Will die first. We fight for her!"
Red Cloud was obviously very angry, but after a slight pause where I could almost see the wheels turning, he frowned and nodded. I suddenly realized there was more politics to being a Chief than most people ever imagined.
I was pretty sure I understood what was happening, but I looked at Grandpa for an explanation anyway.
He shrugged and said, "Looks like you're going to have to fight him. He has already lost face so he has to try to kill you. See if you can't give him a sound whipping without killing him, but remember – he will be trying his best to kill you – so, if you have to kill him to stay alive, do it – no one here will hold it against you, and actually expect it."
Without any further discussion, the two of us were manhandled unceremoniously to a large area where we were surrounded by all the braves in camp, their bodies acting as the barriers of our 'ring'. We were prepared for our fight by having our left arms joined by a 6-foot piece of rawhide leather tied to our wrists. Then we were each handed a knife.
I quickly checked the balance and 'feel' of the knife in my hand and settled into a 'ready' position, prepared to fight for my life. My opponent did likewise.
Red Cloud checked to ensure we were indeed both ready, then shouted, "Start!"
Almost by unspoken agreement, we each drew up some slack in our tether until we were just barely within arm's reach then we started to slowly circle each other, flicking our knives at each other, thrusting and parrying – testing – trying to feel out the other's weaknesses.
My opponent didn't just rush in, like last time – this was for keeps this time, and he was very aware of that fact. Neither of us wanted this to drag out, but neither did either of us want to make a fatal mistake by moving too quickly, either. With that in mind, hoping to use his arrogance against him, I suddenly took a quicker step, and faked a stumble.
In his conceit, thinking he was so much better than a mere 'White Eyes', the fool fell for it, and thinking to end me quickly, rushed in, trying to catch me while I was still off-balance. Surprise! He had done exactly as I wanted and expected, so I was prepared and waiting.
As he committed to his lunging attack, I countered by stepping to the side and sharply swung my elbow up hard into his nose. Already broken from our first encounter, it started to bleed profusely again, blurring his vision again. Trying to put a quick end to it, I then swung around behind him, using the mechanical advantage of the rawhide thong and secured us together by wrapping it tightly around his neck, cutting off his wind. I completed the move by bringing my knife to his throat, holding it there and drawing a thin trickle of blood to emphasize that he was thoroughly defeated.
I looked over to Red Cloud as he watched my antagonist's total defeat. He made a slashing motion across his throat and, obviously disgusted, declared, "Finish it!"
I held my prisoner for a minute then, as I moved my knife away from his exposed flesh, I said, "I give you back your life."
I cut the rawhide thong joining us from my wrist and turning, started to walk away. I had only taken a few steps when I heard the sound of footsteps running toward me, then a gun shot. When I stopped and turned around to look, I saw Crazy Horse standing there, holding a smoking rifle and the brave I had just fought lay dead on the ground.
I gave Crazy Horse a questioning look. He shrugged and said, "He coward with no honor. After surrender, he try to stab in back."
I thanked him but he just shrugged again and turned away. I understood that although he didn't like the white man he was still a man of honor, and expected his braves to also behave with honor.
I went over to join Grandpa and Red Cloud and asked if I could speak with all of them. Red Cloud beckoned Crazy Horse to join us, and when he had, I said, "I know what happened to Custer, and although he may have been a fool to lose his whole command the way he did in a great victory for the People, the White Man's government is still going to want revenge for what happened. They will not care if he might have been stupid or that Sitting Bull was acting in self defense."
Crazy Horse replied, "Then we fight them like we did Custer!"
"Crazy Horse, you have powerful medicine, but the White Government has many more soldiers than all the people in all the tribes of the Sioux. They will keep coming till there are no more Sioux."
"We must fight! White government give Paha Sapa to Sioux people! Now white eyes keep coming to look for yellow iron and trespass on Sacred Land."
"They will keep coming too. The yellow iron has great value to the white men. They will kill for it and will send the army to take Paha Sapa away from Sioux people. You need to run and let them chase you until they are not so bent on revenge.
Red Cloud complained, "What can do? Many are old or women. They cannot travel fast or far."
Grandpa offered, "Bring them to my place till some of this blows over. We will help them with food and help keep them safe. We can cut out a few head of cattle to help tide them over and Clay here can help them with any medicine they might need."
They sat and talked among themselves for a while. They decided they would leave a few braves to help watch over the women, children and old people at Grandpa's ranch while Crazy Horse and the rest led the army on a long wild goose chase. Meanwhile, Red Cloud would stay and speak for his people.
Regardless of the need to work out a strategy for dealing with the White Government in light of Custer's defeat, there were other important matters on the agenda – such as, a wedding! All too soon (for me, the reluctant groom, anyway), it was time to get ready for the wedding. Dove came and got me and Grandpa for us to cleanup and for me to change into a set of bleached white buckskins that were left for me but which I had no idea where or who they came from.
When she decided I was presentable, Dove, escorted by Grandpa, then led me to meet the twins. When I saw them, I was taken aback by their beauty, especially now, when they were all dolled up for our wedding. In short, they were absolutely ravishing, and I felt a lurch in my heart, and maybe some other places, too...
My sweeties (There I go again – where is it coming from?) were dressed in matching white doeskin dresses, trimmed with red and yellow beads. Those dresses, although not tight, were still quite form-fitting, showing off their very feminine curves to their best advantage without being trashy – the perfect advertisement of my blushing brides to their increasingly happy groom. And ... blushing brides they were, their sweet elfin faces a blaze of color as they tried unsuccessfully to hide their eager smiles while trying to look properly solemn.
Despite my earlier misgivings about getting married and my objections to Grandpa, when the time came, I felt as proud as could be, when we were led – me with an adorable twin on either arm – in front of Red Cloud to ask his permission for us to marry.
Looking Red Cloud directly in the eye, I made my case. "I, once known to the People as Dirty Hand, have traded fairly with Spotted Owl for his two daughters, and they are mine. Now, I ask permission of the tribe to take them as my True Wives."
Red Cloud regarded me seriously for a moment then smiled and said, "You have shown yourself to be a good friend of the Sioux, but Dirty Hand is a boy's name, not a man's. From this day forwards, the Sioux will know you as Two Lives, for while you have lived the Life of the white man but now will also live that of the Sioux. You may take these girls who are your women as your true wives to keep your lodge and bring you many strong sons."
Next, we were led to White Calf Woman. I said, "The Chief, Red Cloud, has given us the permission of the tribe for us to marry. I can provide well for my wives and ask that you bless our union." Then I presented her with the buffalo robes as proof that I could provide for my family.
White Calf Woman accepted the robes with a smile, and had the three of us join our right hands which she then tied together and intoned, "The Great Spirit is in all things, even in the air we breathe. The Great Spirit is our Father, but the Earth is our Mother. She nourishes us ... that which we put into the ground she returns to us. My Son, you are now flesh of our flesh and bone of our bone. By this ceremony, performed here this day, by taking these two as your True Wives, every drop of white blood has been washed from your veins and you have been taken into and become part of the Sioux Nation."
Wow! I just KNEW that now I was part of something huge and worthwhile! In my own time, I had often felt like a second-class citizen because of my Native American blood, and all the teasing I got over it. I had hated it so much that I denied it to myself, and refused to learn anything of my heritage.
Today, by marrying these two lovely sweethearts, and from what both Red Cloud and White Calf Woman had told me, I was no longer apart, and could now accept my heritage because it had accepted ME! I felt my spirit lift toward the sky and my heart felt like it might burst. Two Lives indeed! I would need both just to contain my happy spirit!
Thus, my sweeties and I were wed, and I had come into my heritage. After the ceremony there was a great feast with lots of food and dancing. As we sat and watched the festivities, other members of the tribe came to give their best wishes on our marriage.
The feasting and dancing went on till well after dark. Then, at some unknown signal it was over, and I was led to the wedding lodge by my two brides.
Upon entering, the three of us regarded each other nervously for a few seconds, then acting on some silent cue, we began to shyly undress. I managed to get my own rig off without too much fuss, seeing as how nervous I was. I had faced down gunmen and gone into battle, and never felt this nervous!
The girls helped each other. Running Deer especially needed help from Little Doe because of her cast. Regardless of the difficulty over Deer's cast, they put on an incredibly sensual and pleasing-to-the-eye display. As their wondrous charms were gradually revealed, I sat and marveled at my two lovely ladies. Finally, after all my whining and doubts, I had accepted and realized the full value of the treasures I had just won. And ... with that realization, I wondered, not for the last time, just what exactly I had done to be so lucky.
Quickly overcoming our mutual shyness, we came together in a group hug which evolved into passion as we started kissing and petting on each other. Our passion and desire for each other grew and fed upon itself until we reached the natural conclusion and we made love. Running Deer was the first to enthusiastically and noisily lose her virginity, then an equally loud and energetic Little Doe.
At first I was concerned about the noise but it didn't seem to bother them and in fact, it seemed like they were actually trying to outdo each other. Finally, after I don't know how long, fully sated and feeling our mutual love, we fell asleep in each others' arms. I felt like a king with my beautiful wives snuggled cozily on either side of me.
I would like to thank my great editors Eviltwin and Ice Wolf . They make my scribbling worth reading.