Journey of the Heart, Chapter Eight, ...
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|Thu, 03-20-2003 - 2:23pm|
Journey of the Heart, Chapter Eight, Part One
I did this for you and rewrote this next scene in HIS pov! And you know what? It’s SO MUCH BETTER! lol! So, thanks for mentioning your "dying" to be in White Eagle’s head. I really like this scene a lot more now.
Okay, here it is: (links are below).
CHAPTER EIGHT, PART ONE
Birds chirped above White Eagle’s head as he and Kathryn rode through the beautiful Rocky Mountains. The horse’s hooves fell on the ground, while sounds of crunching pine cones and small branches hung in the quiet air.
Aspen trees bore leaves the size of silver dollars, and their white bark made it seem like they were in an enchanted forest.
Kathryn’s quiet gasps interrupted the silence as she gazed with parted lips at the beauty and wonder of their surroundings.
Despite his lack of sleep, these were the best days of his life. He shook the thoughts from his head. Had he lost his mind? He was attracted to a white woman! A woman who knew nothing of his race. Yet the feel of her soft body and her gold hair brushing against his chest erased all reservations and filled his being with intoxicating lust.
It took all the will power he had to keep from touching her these past nights. But he had been a gentlemen and kept his hands to himself. He almost felt sorry he had given her his word not to touch her and return her to Denver. But suppose his people frightened her? He could never take a woman who couldn’t accept his culture. He was nothing but a savage to her, and there was little doubt that she, an Easterner, would ever accept his people.
"Look there." He pointed across a steep ravine to a high bluff. A ledge protruded from the bluff’s edge with a gathering of branches. "It’s an eagle’s nest." He glanced down at her. Those blue eyes seemed to soak in all that he showed her. He longed to be in her mind, to know what she was thinking. He couldn’t help but notice how captivated she became by all the that they had seen. It encouraged him to show her more, to impress her.
"Eagle’s mate for life," he said, staring at her, wondering what she might think of that.
Her eyes fluttered in his direction but immediately glanced away. She straightened in obvious discomfort.
"If a human ever touches an eagle’s eggs, the mother will abandon the nest," he said, trying to make her comfortable again, but smiling inwardly. He then eased the horse closer to the edge of the cliff.
Just then, an eagle flew through the deep ravine and landed on its perch high on the rocky bluff. He watched her eyes as they traced the bluff and gazed into the blue, cloudless sky, then down into the ravine where a river roared at its base.
The sounds of birds, of the river far below, and of the wind blowing through the trees surrounded them.
"A mother bear and her cubs." He motioned toward the raging river.
She peered down at a bear stretching its paw into the water.
"She’s teaching her cubs how to fish," he said.
The baby cubs leaped playfully on the river bank, not paying any attention to their mother.
"They’re so sweet and cuddly!" She gasped. "I’d love to hold one of them."
"No, you wouldn’t." He chuckled, intrigued by her innocence and fondness for the cubs. "A mother bear’s wrath is deadly."
White Eagle turned the horse away from the ravine, and they entered the woods once again. They wove between more trees and worked their way deep into the forest. He stretched out his arm and pushed branches away from her face, then they came to an opening between the trees and found themselves at the edge of a meadow.
Majestic mountains surrounded a beautiful pasture.
Her quiet gasp told him she was captivated by its beauty. Colorful flowers bloomed on every hill and in the distant valleys. Pine trees cascaded down the snowcapped mountainsides.
"If only I could fly. It’s like heaven on earth," she said as they entered the clearing.
"Hold on." White Eagle urged his mount into a trot. He put his arm around her to steady her balance; a good excuse to touch her.
Trotting was always more comfortable and much smother than when the horse was walking.
He tightened his arm around her waist, recalling how she looked in her wet chemise. He gritted his teeth, trying to fight off his thoughts, then urged the horse into a gallop.
She relaxed into the movements of the animal. He hoped to dispel all her fears of falling.
The beast’s strength and power surged through his legs, and the mountains towered above them on every side.
Her hair, bound in his clip, whipped behind her. The fresh fragrance of the air filled his lungs, and laughter escaped her lips.
"Catch the wind," he said.
They practically flew between the majestic landscape surrounding them.
"Like this." He took her soft hands in his own, intertwining his fingers with hers.
She leaned against him, and his breath caught in his throat.
He slowly held out her arms and rested his cheek against hers as the horse continued its pace.
"Catch the wind," he said again.
They soared on the wind like a bird.
"I’m flying!" she said.
He then grasped her waist.
"Imagine floating over the clouds," he whispered in her ear. "Nothing can stop you. You’re flying towards freedom with no one to hold you back."
The wind whipped up her hair, brushing its yellow strands against his cheek, enticing him. Without her noticing, he seized the locks in his fist and buried his face in her mane. He then wrapped the thick mass around his neck, satisfying the ache he had from the moment he had her in his arms to feel it around him.
An eagle soared past them and swooped down, its wingspan magnificent. It caught a rabbit in its claws and flew to the other side of the clearing.
When they came to the other end of the meadow, he slowed the horse to a canter, then to a gait.
"I’ve never experienced anything so wonderful," she said, short of breath as if she had been running. Laughing out loud, she whirled around and looked at him.
Her eyes sparkled, then fell on her yellow mane of hair still wrapped around his neck and dangling over his chest.
She covered her mouth and giggled at the sight.
* * *
That afternoon, they met up with Dancing Cloud and his warriors. Elizabeth had a contented smile on her face and seemed as fascinated with the beautiful Rocky Mountains as was Kathryn.
She turned to Kathryn, and a surprised look washed over her face.
Kathryn smiled, but wondered what had surprised her friend. Then Kathryn’s face went warm when she recalled that the Indians had seen her by the stream. She tried to avoid their eyes to hide her embarrassment yet couldn’t help noticing their frowns.
Several of them said something to White Eagle. They raised their voices and motioned in her direction. He responded in turn. They argued with vengeance back and forth, raising the hairs on the back of her neck. Finally, Dancing Cloud interrupted the flow of words. Everyone fell silent.
White Eagle moved away from the others.
"What was that all about?" she asked in a whisper, not wanting to attract the attention of the unhappy warriors.
"You wear war paint."
She had completely forgotten about her incredible appearance. Her face became so hot, she wondered if it might melt away the paint. She wished it would. How dreadful! Without meaning to, she had offended the warriors.
Then her thoughts turned to more pressing matters of concern. "Did any of your friends see me by the stream?"
He didn’t answer.
She peered up at him and saw a look of amusement playing on his face. Her eyes widened, and she jerked her head toward to others.
He remained silent.
After stopping at a stream to wash the paint off of her face, they came to an open valley where teepees sprouted from a carpet of green. An Indian village surrounded an empty circle with a large opening toward the east, the direction from which they came. A small lake could be seen to the left of the village, horses grazed in the western field on a hill, and dogs roamed about.
"These are Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians," White Eagle said. "The majority here are Cheyenne. The rest of the tribe live on reservations."
"Cheyenne," Kathryn repeated, trying to recall what she knew about the name. She had mainly thought of it as the town that would take her to Denver, not as Indians. Then it hit her. When she was thirteen, just after the war, news about the Sand Creek Massacre had reached the east. Some minister and his men attacked a Cheyenne Indian village, despite the fact that a Union flag waved in the center as a sign for peace. The soldiers had shot, stabbed, and clubbed the Indian people, including children. When the news spread, the American people had been shocked.
Shivers crawled up Kathryn’s spine. That happened six years ago, but would these people want to avenge what happened then on her and Elizabeth today?
"Many of our people were forced to Indian Territory, but these few escaped into the mountains. We are plains Indians, but prefer to live here in the mountains, rather than move to lands forced upon us. Our people settled on the plains years ago, long before the White Man arrived. We shouldn’t have to leave."
She took a deep breath, her mind, plagued with worry.
"Will they hurt me and Elizabeth?"
She exhaled, long and deep.
"They won’t harm the one who is to become my wife."
Tingles went down her neck. To hear him use the word ‘wife’ made it more real. But he had said he wouldn’t touch her and would take her to Denver, and that Cheyenne law meant nothing to white people, so they wouldn’t officially be married. Yet, wasn’t he Cheyenne? Didn’t his own laws mean anything to him? Apparently not, since he was willing to take her to Denver. Why?
"The Cheyenne are good people," he said. "They won’t harm you."
As they neared the village, the children came to greet them first. Boys and girls alike had long, black hair, either braided or steaming loose down their backs. They stared without wavering.
One boy with a small bow and arrow in his hand, moved in for a closer look. Another girl had a doll tied to her back with a sash. She and a few other girls stepped near the boy, staring at Kathryn.
Soon, women and other men emerged from their teepees or stopped the work they were doing. Some of the men’s chests were bare, while others wore fringed shirts. Some had buckskin leggings with flaps and fringe below the knee. Most of their eyes focused on her and Elizabeth. They neither smiled nor frowned, sending a nervous tingle down Kathryn’s back.
White Eagle dismounted and helped Kathryn to her feet. He was strong and lifted her as if she weighed nothing. He had rarely smiled since joining with Dancing Cloud, but when she chanced a glance up at him, a look of pride shown on his face.
When her feet touched the ground, she leaned against him because of her sore ankle and to calm her nerves. He said they wouldn’t harm her. She should trust him. And if they tried anything, White Eagle was sure to protect her.
White Eagle spoke and nodded to the boys and girls. All at once, the children swarmed around her. Little hands, reached out and touched the ends of her hair. They babbled to one another with excitement as they stared in wonder. She couldn’t help but giggle.
She gazed at them in wonder, likely in the same way they stared at her. Their ears were pierced with loop earrings. Some wore beaded, silver necklaces and bracelets. Other ornaments were made of leather, and some had painted bones adorning the jewelry. Quilled designs covered some of their clothing, and colorful beads were sewn on their moccasins.
The girl with the doll on her back spoke to White Eagle. He said something in return.
"What did she say?" Kathryn asked.
"She would like a lock of your hair."
"Oh." Kathryn would have been happy to give her one, if all the children hadn’t been touching her hair. Suppose all of them wished for a lock? She’d be bald by the time she left for Denver.
White Eagle ran the back of his fingers across the girl’s cheek and said something to her. The little girl with big, brown eyes, smiled up at him. For a moment, a look passed between them that made Kathryn think they shared a special knowledge.
"This is Runs With Wind," White Eagle said.
Prologue Part One: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting46/6.html
Prologue Part Two: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting46/20/6.html
Prologue Part Three: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting46/29.html
Prologue Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting46/29/1.html
Chapter Two, First part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting47/48.html
Chapter Two, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting47/54.html
Chapter Three, Part One: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting48/17.html
Chapter Three, Part Two: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting48/26.html
Chapter Three, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting48/26/1.html
Chapter Four, Part One: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting48/38.html
Chapter Four, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting48/50.html
Chapter Five, Part One: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/8.html
Chapter Five, Part Two: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/8/1.html
Chapter Five, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/20.html
Chapter Six, First Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/31.html
Chapter Six, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/31/1.html
Chapter Seven, Part One: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting49/52.html
Chapter Seven, Part Two: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting50/7.html
Chapter Seven, Part Three: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting50/24.html
Chapter Seven, Last Part: http://boards1.ivillage.com/messages/get/bcromancewriting50/24/1.html