Two Captives Ch. 02byBlewWater69©
This is a fictional account.
Author's Note: Many of you loved the first story and thanks for the kind words/votes. I will keep developing this story line for you. Please be patient as I also try other things too. Some thought it was geared mostly to men and let me know that too. My apologies to those disappointed if it was not exactly what they were looking for in the first story. In this chapter, I will attempt to appeal to more tastes. I appreciate your feedback.
Sarah and Sally woke to the sounds of movement outside their tepee. Sarah threw back her buffalo hide blanket and crawled to the entrance flap. She pushed it open to look out upon the Arapaho village. She could see lots of activity. Several tepees were already pulled down and the many buffalo hide skin covers were stacked in piles along side another pile of long thin poles.
"What is going on?" Sally asked.
"It looks like the Arapaho are breaking camp," Sarah said. "Many of the tepees are down and people look to be packing up."
"Where are they going?" Sally asked.
"I don't know, Sally?" Sarah replied worried about what this meant for their fate.
"I have to pee," Sally said.
"Me too. Let's go see if we can find the leader's wife to take us," Sarah said.
"Okay," Sally said getting up.
The girls exited the tepee and immediately spotted the leader's wife. She too was busy breaking down her tepee and packing up. The leader was nowhere to be seen. The two brothers had already broken down their tepee and it was made into a travois for movement behind a horse. Sally had told Sarah that these were indeed the sons of the leader. From their younger sister, Sally had learned that they were eighteen and twenty years old.
When the two brothers spotted Sally and Sarah standing outside their tepee, they walked over to them. The older brother began talking to Sarah. He indicated they were going to dismantle her tepee next. She wasn't sure at first what he was saying but watching the younger brother begin removing the hides gave her all the clues she needed. Sarah smiled recognition of what he was saying to the tall older brother and he smiled back warmly. He then proceeded to help his brother.
Sarah and Sally walked to the old woman and tried to explain they had to pee. Sarah was struggling to get her message across when Sally stepped in and said one word to the older woman. That seemed to do the trick. Sarah was impressed that Sally was learning the language so quickly and she vowed she had better make an effort too.
The leader's wife pointed towards the same thicket of bushes they had used before and pushed them on indicating they could go themselves alone. The sisters walked along the stream following the well worn trail. Soon they reached the thicket and made their way to the split rock as they both had before. Sarah let Sally go first and then followed her. When they were done, Sally turned to leave but Sarah stopped her.
"Sally, we are finally alone together. We could make a run for it," Sarah said.
"You want to try an escape?" Sally asked. "You think we could?"
"I don't know," Sarah answered hesitatingly. "Maybe with the confusion of the move they will lose track of us for a while and we can escape."
"You think we can? Which way do we go?" Sally asked.
"I don't know which way and they might hurt us if we get caught," Sarah said.
"I don't want them to hurt us," Sally worried.
"I know, Sally...I know," Sarah said. "Let me think a minute."
"Well," Sally said after a couple minutes.
"I don't think we'll get a better chance," Sarah said. "We should try."
"But where will we go?" Sally asked.
"We'll have to try and make our way back towards our house," Sarah said.
"Okay," Sally said.
The sisters exited the thicket. No other Indians were nearby. They started out away from the village angling back towards the stream. When they were about a mile from the village they found a spot where an old tree lay across the stream and they used it to get to the other side.
Sarah had heard stories of what good trackers Indians were. So before they got to the end of the tree, she had Sally remove her shoes. Sarah did too and they dropped off the log into the water. They walked in the water along the bank trying to hide their tracks. When they had gone a few hundred yards, they climbed out of the water on another fallen log. They put their shoes back on.
"Sally, try to step on clumps of grass and avoid making tracks in the bare ground," Sarah said.
The girls preceded single file with Sally following Sarah and stepping where she did. It was early morning, so it was obvious which way was east. Sarah thought they had come northwest into the village, so they tried going back southeast.
Sarah led them through an open field but then she realized they should probably stick to the forest to avoid being easily spotted. They had walked for an hour staying as much as they could to the forest. Sarah tried to judge the right direction as the sun moved higher in the sky. Fortunately, it was a warm summer day and would probably be a pleasant night. Neither of them had anything but the buckskin clothes on their backs.
"I'm hungry," Sally said after a little while.
"Me too," Sarah said. "But we can't stop, Sally. Look for berries while we walk."
"Okay, but berries are not going to fill us up," Sally said.
They walked about another hour but found nothing to eat. It looked to be close to noon then by the position of the sun.
"I'm thirsty," Sally said.
"I know...me too," Sarah said. "We should hit a stream or something soon."
They walked further and Sally started to complain about being tired. She wanted to rest. Sarah explained they had to keep moving or they would get caught. The forest started to get thicker and deeper. They were having trouble making any time as they had to go around dense brush and large rocks. Sarah lost track of the sun many times as it was obscured by the thick canopy of trees. Finally, they found a small stream and stopped briefly to drink.
"Do you think we got way from the Indians?" Sally asked.
"No...we are not safe until we are back near our house or neighbors," Sarah said.
"We weren't too safe at our house before," Sally said smartly.
"Yes, that's true but it is all we can do," Sarah said. "I wish we had one of those water bladders."
The girls crossed the brook to the bank on the other side. They fought their way through the tall reeds and once again entered the deeper woods. After about a half hour they came to a small clearing. They left the more secure forest for the openness of the field trying to cover more ground quickly. As they crossed the field and once again approached the forest, Sarah spotted some raspberry bushes.
"Sally, look these look like edible berries," Sarah said as she picked one.
Sally too picked one and they both tried them together. They both recognized the sweet tartness of raspberries and they proceeded to pick and eat more. They were so busy picking berries and eating them, they did not see the black bear enter the field and head across.
The girls had picked many of the berries in front of them and moved around and squatted to reach more. It was then Sally spotted movement out of her left eye and turned her head to see the bear only five feet away. Sally screamed! Sarah wheeled around to practically face the bear head on. Sarah too screamed and the bear rose up on its hind legs reacting to the noise. The bear growled and snorted at the two creatures standing before it and in front of the berries.
Sarah grabbed Sally and they struggled to find an opening in the raspberry bushes to allow them to run from the bear. The bear began to come toward them with its front paws leading the way. The bear's two inch claws were mere feet from the girls now.
The girls could not find a break in the dense brush. Sally was clinging to Sarah as the bear approached. The bear stood six feet tall on its hind legs. Its huge teeth were clearly visible as it approached the girls growling.
Sarah tried to move Sally behind her and she screamed at the bear hoping it would retreat. Just as it seemed the bear would reach them and attack, it reeled around. Stuck fast into its back were two arrows. The bear roared in pain and aggression only to get hit by two more arrows in quick succession. The bear dropped to its feet and started to run off. Two more arrows plunged deep into its side and it reeled from the pain. It roared but then seemed to choke as it lumbered a few more feet in an attempt to get away. Its wounds were fatal though and after only a few more weak steps it crashed to the ground with a blood-spraying snort.
The girls' eyes turned from the dying bear to the field to see the two Indian brothers ride up on their ponies. They seemed quite pleased with themselves for killing the bear. The older brother led the way. He dropped from his horse and approached them. Once again Sarah tried to shield Sally behind her.
Sarah raised her fists as if she planned to fight the much bigger male Indian. He laughed at her as she tried to fend him off. He spoke to her in an amused voice.
"He says you are brave," Sally told Sarah.
"Tell him to leave us alone," Sarah said to Sally.
"I don't know how to say that," Sally said.
All she could think off was the Arapaho word for run, which she learned playing horses with the little girl. When Sally said it to the two Indians, they laughed more and indicated they should try.
Sarah glanced quickly about, looking for an exit strategy but still could not see an easy way around the thick brush. She started to slide Sally down the brush line but the younger brother moved his horse quickly to block their movements.
Sarah had taken her eyes momentarily off the older brother and he was on her in an instant. He grabbed Sarah's clenched fists and pulled her forward so hard she fell to her knees. He pulled a long leather string from his pants and wound it tightly around Sarah's wrists. Then he grabbed her like a sack of wheat and carried her over to the dead bear. He set Sarah down next to the bear. The younger brother chased Sally over too while leading the horses as well.
When Sarah sat up, Sally knelt next to her. The girls glanced at the dead bear and back to the older brother. He pulled a long knife from his boot and stepped forward. Sarah and Sally screamed thinking he was coming for them. Instead he knelt by the bear and rolled it over on its back. He then cut the bear open from the throat to the tail. Blood flowed everywhere. When the girls saw the guts of the bear spill out of the chest cavity they both got sick almost simultaneously. The few berries they had managed to eat came back out as they both heaved from the sight of the gutted bear.
It took a while for the brothers to dress out the bear and get it ready for travel. They removed their arrows saving the arrowheads if the shafts were broken. The older brother finished preparing the bear as the younger went for wood for a travois. He soon returned with two freshly cut and stripped poles of equal length. The brothers tied them together and then secured the bear to the poles. In another ten minutes they were all ready to go with the bear secured behind the younger brother's pony.
Sally rode behind the younger brother and Sarah sat behind the older brother with her hands now untied. All the fight left the girls after they threw up and watched the bear being dressed.
Sarah was surprised to see that the small party did not return the way they had come. They crossed the small field and entered the forest on the other side. After nearly two hours of making their way through the forest, they rode into an open plain. The sight before Sarah nearly took her breath away. In the distance she could see the whole Arapaho nation on the move.
As the small party moved at an angle to intersect the main formation, the girls watched the long line of ponies and Indians crossing the plain. A cloud of dust trailed the long line as it advanced. Children ran around playing as they moved forward. Many Indians rode horses but many more walked. The travois were numerous and strapped to the horses. Some older women and a few older men rode on the travois along with their belongings. Young warriors galloped outside the formation as if they were herding sheep.
It took a good half hour to cross the plain separating the small party from the main advance. Once they reached the procession they maneuvered their way through to where the leader's family was. Sarah could see the leader proudly sitting tall on his horse. The sons caught up to him and he greeted them with smiles. He frowned at Sarah to show his discontent.
They traveled the rest of the day but stopped before dusk. The Indians set up camp but did not unpack the tepees. They would sleep under the stars tonight. It was a pleasant night for it.
Sarah and Sally unpacked their buffalo hide blankets from their travois and prepared a spot to sleep on the opposite side of the fire from the leader and his wife. They had a dinner of bear meat and some kind of biscuits or cakes. For once as Sarah sat on her buffalo hide, her stomach did not ache. She looked out over the Arapaho nation settling in for the night. Hundreds of fires burned as the stars twinkled in the clear sky above. The leader had them on a small hill overlooking the whole nation. It must have been one of his privileges or rites to command such a prominent position. Other chiefs had similar hill spots for their families.
At one point, Sarah noticed the older son talking to his father. She watched as the conversation unfolded. She could not understand them but by the tone of their voices it was a lively discussion. As she watched though it seemed to get more animated and the men's voices grew louder. Sarah looked over at the wife and she too was watching the exchange. They shared a momentary look at each other before turning back to the men. The conversation came to an abrupt end as the leader turned and walked back to his wife and fire. The older son seemed distraught as he joined his brother at their fire.
Sarah wondered what the talk had been about and where they were headed as she looked back out over the sleepy camp. Sally was already asleep next to her, exhausted from the day's ordeal. So far, they had not been punished for the attempted escape. Sarah grew tired and curled up with Sally on their hides.
Sarah awoke to someone shaking her. Sitting up she realized it was the young daughter of the leader. Sally was already awake and rubbing the sleep from her eyes. Sally had to pee and indicated so to the little Indian girl. She took Sally's hand and they walked off obviously to find a spot.
Sarah looked around. The brothers were up and, along with their father, were tending the horses. The leader's wife was fixing the morning meal. Sarah thought she would try to help and moved around the fire to sit by the older woman. Sarah tried to offer to help and the older woman grasped what she was trying to say. She showed Sarah how to mix the grains with water to make the dough for biscuits. When they were done they cooked them on flat smooth rocks by the fire. The cakes and more bear meat would be their morning meal.
When the food was ready they gave some to the two returning little girls. Sarah walked to the leader and the brothers and indicated as best she could it was time to eat. They got the message and finished their work. The older brother smiled at her before she walked back to the fire.
After everyone ate, Sarah observed that the other families were finishing up eating too. It was amazing to Sarah how each family independently worked towards being ready to travel at exactly the same time. While Sally and the daughter played with toy horses, Sarah helped the wife clean up and prepare to leave.
About an hour later the whole nation was ready to move. The precession started out slowly at first but quickly formed up in a similar fashion to the day before and began to travel.
Sarah walked alongside the wife while Sally and the daughter rode on one of the travois and continued playing. The youngest son was off working the perimeter of the formation with many other braves. The leader rode ahead constantly examining the formation and its progress. The older son was in charge of the horses and travois and had ropes tying everything together so he could lead the first horse and the rest would follow.
As they walked along Sarah tried to communicate with the wife. She learned several Indian names for things like horse, clothes, and moccasins. Sarah told the wife her name and Sally's. The wife gave the names of each of the members of the family. The leader's name was Gray Cloud. The sons were Red Fox and Two Bears. Two Bears was the oldest. The daughter was White Flower and her name was Water Running. It took the wife quite a while to tell Sarah each of the Indian names and then describe it to the point Sarah got the translation.
The formation reached a river at just after noon. The Arapaho nation rested while riders were dispatched to find the best crossing point. The Arapaho Indians knew this river well but the shallows changed constantly from year to year with the floods of spring and fallen trees. The best place to cross one year might be not so good the next.
Water Running and Sarah built a quick fire and cooked strips of the bear meat on sticks. When the riders returned an hour later each of the family members had eaten a piece or two of the cooked bear meat.
The formation moved west for about a mile and found a spot where the river was quite wide. The width of the river bed spread the water out and made it much shallower. Only one small area dropped to two feet of depth. It was elected they would cross here. Water Running told Sarah to get up on her travois as they entered the river.
Gray Cloud and Two Bears led the family and horses across and they made it easily. The only things that got wet were the horse's legs and a few of the bottom hides.
Everyone filled their water bladders in the river before the formation began to move again. The Arapaho nation moved forward on the plain toward their eventual goal. Sarah reasoned they had to be covering over twenty miles a day. That night was basically a repeat of the night before. They were blessed with no rain so far, though the heat seemed to be more intense out on the open plains.
The tribe traveled like this for three more days. Eventually, they reached another river. This time they set up camp more permanently along its banks. The tepees were set up much as before and the village seemed to return to normal in this new place.
At several times, Sarah had opportunities to talk with the family members during the trip. She learned many more Arapaho words and so did Sally. Sally seemed to have a natural knack for the language. Sarah had talked to Two Bears several times and they had laughed and smiled at each other as they tried to communicate.
Sally continued to sleep with Sarah but played most of the day with White Flower. The girls did have some minor tasks to do each day but they usually finished quickly. Sarah had taken to working with Water Running most of the time. Water Running seemed to appreciate the help more and more as each day went by. Sarah was also beginning to learn the routines and workings of the family and village. This meant she could anticipate some tasks and do them without needing to be told.
Life with the Indians and their new family was beginning to become bearable for Sally and Sarah. Sarah had not been made to perform oral sex on anyone since they left the old camp. She didn't know why but she was relieved. Occasionally she would walk by the tepee of the old woman and the young girl she had been brought to on that first day. Sarah would always see plenty of the fur covered corn cobs drying in the sun. Sarah believed this meant that the girl must still be servicing many of the men of the village.