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Chaordia - A Novel of Transformation Ch. 7

Because of climate change a man wants to transform an old farm into a new colony

While we made our way down the other side of the hill through the much thicker woods and no path, we stopped a few times, uncertain which way to go. "I think it’s this way," I said, pointing in one direction and Alice said, "No, I think we came from that direction."

"Maybe we should have let Sun Dancer bring us back," I said.

"Maybe," Alice responded, looking around. "We’ll find our way back. Let’s go that way," she said pointing.

"I don’t know," I said, looking at a large tree that had fallen but was being held up by several other trees. "I think I remember that tree. I think we should go that way."

I looked up through the trees and saw the sun was no longer where I remembered it earlier and tried to figure out which way was east and which way was west. "That must be north," I said, pointing. "I remember the sun was over there this morning. That was the East."

"So what if that’s the North," Alice said. "How does that help us know which way to go to the farm?"

Alice then turned around to look in the direction I thought must be south. "Let’s go that way," I said. "I have a feeling that’s the way we came."

She agreed and we continued in that direction. We climbed over fallen trees, pushing aside branches. Alice was a few steps behind me. I heard her stop.

"Wait a minute," she said.

When I turned around she was taking the plastic container of water from her backpack, took a big gulp then handed me the water. "We’ll find our way back," she said. "I think we’re going in the right direction."

"I do too. I bet the stone wall is just ahead."

"I hope Glenn is willing to come back with us to meet White Elk," Alice said. "We don’t have a lot of time, if we have to leave this afternoon."

"Right, he may not think it’s worth it. I wonder what my dad will think."

"What if Glenn refuses? Then what?"

"I don’t know." I shrugged my shoulders, then took another drink and handed the container back to Alice. "We’ll find out."

When we continued walking down the hill, I saw an opening ahead of us through the trees and knew we were close to the bottom of the hill. "I bet the stone wall is not too far," I said.

"Let’s hurry." Alice moved ahead of me. "I can't wait to tell the others what happened."

We couldn’t run, but we were walking faster, weaving our way through the trees, stepping over broken limbs and came to the stone wall. When we climbed over the rocks and reached the pasture, we ran through the high grass past the crooked posts and dangling remnants of wire fencing, glad to see the apple trees and the barn and stonewall. Tammy was putting her sleeping bag into Glenn’s bus and my dad sat on a rock by the smoldering fire, drawing in his sketch book. His sleeping bag and backpack were by his feet. Glenn came out of the barn carrying the blue ice chest when he saw us.

My dad looked up." You guys were away a long time," my dad said. "We’ll be leaving soon."

"We can’t leave yet," Alice said, swallowing deep breaths. "Something really important happened."

"Important. What are you talking about?"

Tammy came over. "We were getting worried we’d have to come looking for you. Why were you gone so long?"

"Wait 'till you hear this," Alice said, just as Glenn came closer, carrying the chest from the barn. "We were just with the Indians."

"You were," my dad said, his eyes widening.

"Yes, we met Sun Dancer and he took us to meet his grandfather, White Elk. He’s the Chief and real old." Alice turned to Glenn. "He said it’s important that you come to him. He wants to talk to you."

"We can’t," Glenn said. "We have to get on the road."

"He said it’s important."

Glenn shook his head, obviously irritated. "It’s not their land regardless of what they think."

"Well, they believe it is," I said. "He said its been their land for thousands of years."

“I know what they believe,” Glenn said.

My dad closed his sketchbook. "I can’t believe you met with their Chief. What else did he say?"

"He said they don’t believe in war and said it’s important that we meet with him."

"I don’t believe in war either," Glenn said. "But I don’t see the point in talking to him about this. What good would that do? And I want to get on the road."

"I don’t know what he wants to talk about," Alice said, "but we went to find out about the old ways. Sun Dancer told us last night that his grandfather told him stories about the old ways, and I wanted to know if he knew anything about Atlantis," Alice said.

"What’s all this talk about Atlantis?" Glenn asked. "You keep bringing Atlantis up."

"I told you, we read these books about Atlantis and it’s all about the old ways and how people lived before it was taken over by the Bendula."

"Bendula? What are you talking about?"

"You were talking about Atlantis the other night when we were at Charley’s," my dad said.

"Right and then we met this woman at the library the other night and we heard her say 'Bendula' while she was listening, but she never read the books."

"I don’t understand," my dad said.

"Don’t you remember that old woman in the front row. She knows about the Bendula and we went to visit her and she said she has memories of Atlantis."

"You’re not making sense," he said. "You went and visited her? Why?"

"Dad, something really weird is going on."

"That’s why I wanted to find Sun Dancer," Alice said. "He didn’t know about Atlantis, but he said he heard stories about where his people came from a long time ago and learned how to live the old ways. That’s why I wanted to know about those stories he was told by his grandfather."

Glenn picked up the ice chest. "You two should go and get your things from the cabin, we will be leaving soon."

"Dad, I think you and Glenn should talk to White Elk before we leave."

"It’s Glenn’s call," my dad said. "I don’t know what to say."

Alice ran over to Glenn just as he started walking towards the bus with the ice chest. She stood in front of him. "Remember when I told you not to worry. Everything would be alright."

"Yes, I heard you say that."

"I can’t explain it, but I really think it’s important that you meet White Elk."

"Why do you think it’s so important?"

"I don’t know why for sure, but I just feel you should talk to him. Please. Listen to me."

Her voice was so emphatic. Her manner surprised me, and again, she had that look when she told Glenn not to worry, like she knew something.

Glenn swallowed and seemed stunned by how she spoke. He looked at my dad and at Tammy, then back at Alice. "I don’t know why you think it’s so important. He’s only going to tell me what I already know. He thinks my farm is Abeneki land and we will disagree." He took a deep breath. "It’s a waste of time and we have to get on the road."

"I think you should listen to Alice," my dad said. "We should go and meet White Elk. So what if we leave later."

I was glad my dad said that. A smile flickered on Alice lips before she turned back to Glenn. "Please. I just have a feeling it’s important."

"Okay, okay." He sighed and walked past Alice and put the blue ice chest in the rear of the bus. "Okay, but how about getting your things from the cabin and putting them in the bus and we’ll go meet White Elk." He looked up at the sky, "But it’s getting late."

Alice and I led the way through the pasture, over the stone wall and through the thick woods. My dad was behind us, followed by Glenn and Tammy. We could see thin, broken branches where we had walked before. We climbed over fallen trees and broken limbs that crisscrossed everywhere. I looked back a few times and saw Tammy brushing leaves from her hair. Glenn was just behind my dad holding branches aside for Tammy. Finally, we were at the top of the hill where the trees were thinning and found the path we had taken before. We stopped a moment and could see the smoke rising in the distance.

"It’s just around that bend," I said, pointing.

Glenn took out his cell phone and glanced at it, "It’s already one-thirty," he announced. "I hope we can get on the road soon."

"What do you think White Elk wants to tell us?" my dad asked.

"I don’t have a clue," I said, "but he told Alice she knows something we don’t."

"Really, that’s strange," my dad said, looking at Alice.

"I have no idea what he’s talking about," Alice said.

I didn’t know what he meant either, but then I remembered how strange it was when she told Glenn not to worry and how she said, "awesome" the moment we got out of the bus.

We made our way down the narrow path through the trees, then waded through the waist high grass on both sides. The sky was blue without a cloud. Looking up, a large bird glided high above us. I didn’t know what it was, but when I pointed to it, Glenn said it was either an eagle or a hawk, he wasn’t sure. My dad thought it was an eagle. Tammy looked up, shielding her eyes with her hand."It’s so high I can hardly see it."

In the distance, the spiral of smoke rose above the trees that lined the meadow. When we turned the bend and saw the circle of wigwams, my dad made that low grunt he makes when he has an insight or sees something that excites him.

"Hmmmm, that’s interesting," he said.

I hadn’t seen what he was sketching, so I had no idea what he meant, but my thoughts were interrupted when a large flock of crows suddenly flew out of the grass. Their beating wings and loud, shrill cawing startled me. I gasped and watched them flying low over the grass before soaring higher into the woods on the other side of the field.

"What was that?" Tammy shouted.

"Crows!" Glenn answered.

We were all stunned while we watched at least a dozen flying away. After a moment, Alice and I continued leading the way through the high grass. When we got closer, Sun Dancer started coming towards us with a woman slightly behind him wearing a long, tan, leather dress that came below her knees. Dark hair, tied in two braided strands, fell over her shoulders. When we greeted each other, Sun Dancer said, "Welcome."

Glenn shook his hand. Even though I knew Glenn was disturbed by the situation, when their eyes met, they both nodded with a slight, warm smile. My father stepped forward and shook Sun Dancer's hand and nodded, but didn’t say anything.

"This is my sister, Morning Star," Sun Dancer said.

Morning Star nodded and smiled her greeting. Though she smiled, her dark eyes looked at us with a probing intensity. She had high cheekbones and a long, slightly bent nose with smooth, much lighter skin than her brother, a color that reminded me of cinnamon. A red and green band with many blue and yellow beads circled her forehead and several beaded necklaces hung from her neck. Her skin had a radiant glow. I was intrigued by the way her eyes lingered on Alice when their gazes met. Why is she looking at Alice like that?

"Follow us," Sun Dancer said.

Morning Star's eyes also focused briefly on my dad before she turned to walk alongside of her brother.

Alice walked next to me, then turned around to see the others following, then faced me and without words we expressed our amazement at the mysterious, strange experience we were sharing. Ever since we had read the Atlantis books, then heard Elizabeth say Bendula at the library, then learned about her memories, and then finding out that Sun Dancer had heard stories about the old ways, we knew something important was happening to us. And now, after meeting White Elk, we were moments away from hearing why he wanted to meet with Glenn and my father.  

When we stood in front of the entrance, Sun Dancer held the flap and motioned for us to enter. Morning Star stood next to him. I glanced up at Sun Dancer, then looked at Morning Star and saw her again gazing at Alice. That's Strange, I thought as Alice and I bent over slightly to enter and saw a small fire surrounded by rocks. White Elk sat leaning against several cushions with his legs straight out covered by a red and green blanket, while a bright orange blanket draped over his shoulders. He held a clay cup in his hand from which he had been sipping. Next to him was Tall Tree, the medicine man, sitting with his legs crossed lotus style. On the ground, next to him was a small red bowl with white sage smoldering, smoke rising, the fragrant air filling the dark wigwam.

Sun Dancer and Morning Star entered the tent after Glenn, Tammy and my dad. Sun Dancer motioned for us to sit across from them on the other side of the fire. He and Morning Star sat next to Tall Tree. No one spoke until White Elk broke the silence.

"Welcome," he said, his narrow, dark eyes moving slowly as he looked at each of us. "Thank you for coming. The others will be here shortly."

I didn’t know what to expect when we sat across from White Elk. Is this really happening? Am I really in an Abeneki wigwarm speaking to a real Indian chief?

While White Elk looked at each of us, I could tell he was tired by the way he took deep breaths and then closed his eyes as if gathering his thoughts. He nodded at Tall Tree, who picked up the small clay bowl, holding it with both hands. He looked at us. "I will explain what I am doing so you will understand our ways. I am smudging and with the smoke, removing bad energy and bringing vision."

He then fanned the sage with his hand and blew into the bowl which made more fragrant smoke rise, then stretched his arms in front of him and moved the bowl in front of us, his eyes closed, as if saying a prayer. When Tall Tree put the bowl down, Glenn broke the silence.

"Why are we here? Why did you ask us to come?"

"To let you know my thoughts and to know yours," White Elk said, "To bring knowledge and hope."

"I believe I know your thoughts. And I believe you know my thoughts."

"How could you know my thoughts?" White Elk said. "I have not spoken my thoughts to you."

Glenn nodded. "That’s true, but I believe I know your thoughts and I’m sure Sun Dancer told you my plans." Glenn spoke softly, calmly. "I want you to know I respect your thoughts and feelings. I know you believe my farm is your land and has been returned to you."

"Yes, that is what we believe. For many years what you call your land has been empty of people. The grass has grown tall. The trees are taking back the hills and pasture. The deer feed from the apples, the rabbits, the squirrels, the fox are not afraid and we have been called back to the place given to us long before your people came, the place of our ancestors."

"I understand what you believe, but this is now a country of laws." Glenn spoke softly, nodding at White Elk’s words.

"Yes, but your laws are not our laws. Our laws come to us from our creator. Your laws are man made and ignore what nature teaches."

Suddenly, Sun Dancer spoke, "Your laws make wars."

"Please do not speak," White Elk said, turning to Sun Dancer and put up his hand, indicating he should be quiet.

Sun Dancer swallowed a deep breath and nodded.

At the same time, three men entered the wigwam and sat down on the other side of the fire next to Sun Dancer. Two of the men had hair tied in long pony tails with the sides of their heads shaved. The other man was older and wore his gray hair long like Sun Dancer. He limped when he entered and had a long, deep scar on one cheek. All three were dressed in jeans but wore long sleeved flannel shirts. One had a thin buckskin vest over his shirt. They also had necklaces with many small white bones. One of the men wore moccasins with a thin band of fur along the edge.

When they sat with their hands in their laps, they nodded at us but did not speak.

Tall Tree then reached in back of him and picked up the leather bag decorated with red, green, and yellow beads. He untied it and took out a long pipe with a small carved clay bowl at the end. I couldn't tell what the stem was made of because it was covered with leather and had three feathers hanging from it and a piece of fur just behind the bowl. He opened a pouch on his belt and filled the pipe and tapped it with his thumb. "This is Semah, our sacred tobacco, our medicine."

When he did that, White Elk removed the blanket from his legs. Though his stiffness made it difficult to move, he sat in the lotus position.

"It is with the smoke of our sacred tobacco that we send prayers to our creator. The spirits love the aroma and it clears the sacred space. It opens our spirit and allows us to receive the healing power. The smoke is our way of reaching the spirits of our ancestors and the creator. It is the eagle that takes our messages to the creator."

When he said that I remembered the eagle we had seen earlier soaring high above us.

White Elk continued, "When we smoke our Semah, we are calling for knowledge and guidance, so that all of us are open to the wisdom that comes to us."

Tall Tree passed the pipe to White Elk, who held it in his hand and closed his eyes as if praying, then Tall Tree picked up a thick bundle and placed one end in the fire, lighting it and moved the flame to the pipe while White Elk moved the pipe to his mouth and inhaled.

While lighting the pipe, Tall Tree said, "This is sweet grass and we braid it with three strands that represent love, kindness and honesty. Its aroma also pleases our creator."

White Elk took a deep puff of smoke, inhaling deeply, closing his eyes, holding his breath, then released smoke into the air. He opened his eyes and passed the pipe to Glenn who nodded as he accepted the pipe, and then he did the same. He took a deep puff, closed his eyes, then released the smoke, then passed it to Tammy, who looked at the bowl, as if admiring its beauty, then placed it in her mouth and inhaled. She coughed before passing it to my father.

Before taking a puff, my dad looked at White Elk, then at Sun Dancer and Morning Star. What's he thinking? I wondered. He closed his eyes, inhaled and held the smoke before releasing it. When he opened his eyes, he looked at Morning Star before handing me the pipe. Their eyes lingered and I sensed something was passing between them but did not know what.

When my father handed the pipe to me, the carvings on the red clay bowl fascinated me. I touched the soft leather that covered the stem and wondered if the feathers were from an eagle and what animal fur was at the end. I placed the tip of the pipe in my mouth and inhaled, feeling the harshness in my throat, then released the smoke into the air and passed the pipe to Alice, our eyes meeting as she placed it in her mouth. She closed her eyes, inhaled, then released the smoke and opened her eyes and watched it rise. She looked at Morning Star and, again, their gazes met, before she passed the pipe to the Indian next to her whose name we didn't know, but he nodded to her as if to say thank you. He inhaled and passed it along to the Indian with the scar on his cheek. He closed his eyes, drawing in the smoke, released it and then passed it to the Indian next to him. Tall Tree was the last to smoke it. When he finished, he held the pipe above his head with both hands and said words that I didn't understand, then lowered the pipe to his lap.

White Elk then took a deep breath before speaking. "We have shared our pipe and Semah with you, so that we can speak from our hearts. You have been told that our land has been returned to us. It is the land of our ancestors and has been given to us by our creator many years ago. We are a people of peace and have a simple way that honors all life. All creatures are our brothers and sisters, the trees, the grass, the sky, the stars are our family. We have suffered great loss when the white man came to our shores and we welcomed them just as we welcomed you. Our way is to forgive and to accept, but what has been done to our people has brought great pain to our hearts. We have suffered and we know what has been done to kill the Abeneki people. Still, we have always believed we would survive if we kept our way of life alive. We believed that one day we would rise if we kept our language, our prayers and our traditions."

While he spoke, his voice was low and gravely. He seemed tired but determined and it took great effort to speak. He looked at Sun Dancer and Morning Star before continuing.

"Many of our young had been taken away. Many of our young left and have tried to live in your country and have become educated in your schools. Some have survived. Many have not. Many of our young men joined your military and fought for your country in the many wars. They were brave and many gave their lives for your country. When they left for your military, they were given sacred tobacco to keep them safe and to remind them of their heritage. Even then, while fighting for your country and being loyal, their tobacco was taken from them and never returned. It was considered a drug, and it was never understood how sacred it was. Taking the sacred tobacco was another way of destroying our people. It was like taking your Bible. It was wrong to do that."

I listened, fascinated by what he was saying, but wondered why he was telling us this.

Again, he turned to Sun Dancer and Morning Star, their eyes meeting. "Now our children are returning to our ways. We are standing up to regain our land in Canada and our land here near the great lake where we once lived. We have come here because it is our sacred land, the land that has always been ours."

When he said that, Glenn's mouth tightened, he shook his head, obviously disturbed by what he was hearing. White Elk turned to him, "Do you hear what I am saying?"

"Yes, I hear what you’re saying. I don’t know what to say."

"Thank you for hearing. Now, you must tell me what you will do."

"After hearing you, I don’t know what to do. I want to live on the land my grandfather passed on to me. I want you to know, I respect what you have told me. I’m ashamed at what my country has done to the Native Americans. I understand our country has been built on genocide and slavery. We may have abolished slavery, but slavery still exists. Black people are still having a hard time. I see what is happening to our planet. I must confess I am now confused. What you have told me makes me even more upset because I came to my land to start over and create a colony that is independent of the government. I am aware of how insane America has become. I see everything falling apart. We’re living in an unsustainable way, and I see a huge collapse coming because of how we are living. I’m frightened and angry and that is why I have come to my land. I have a vision of something new, something beautiful. I want to create Chaordia."

"Chaordia?" White Elk repeated. "I do not know that word."

"It's a word my mother told me. She said it's a new word, a combination of chaos and order, dying and rebirth. She wants to help me create my vision here. She’s a professor of Classics in New York but will be retiring. Also, she’s not well. She grew up on her father's farm."

"I am sorry your mother is not well," White Elk said. "And your strange word may be new, but the meaning is not new. It is the way of nature. Our world has known many times of chaos and collapse. Where we are now was once covered with ice and nothing lived for many centuries when it was too cold for life. There was only ice, the sun, the moon and the stars. Nothing else lived."

"I know," Glenn said. "I also know how people lived before farming and the agricultural revolution. I have read that for thousands of years people lived the way your people do as hunter-and food gathers and everything was shared."

"Yes, our ways are old. That is how we live now."

"I have asked my friend, Eric to help me create new ways of building that will make it possible to live on the land as the climate changes."

White Elk narrowed his eyes when he looked at my dad, and then at Alice and me. He then faced Glenn. "When you first came to speak to me you said you knew my thoughts, but I said you could not know my thoughts because I hadn’t spoken."

"That’s true," Glenn said.

"I know what Sun Dancer told you and I know what you told him, but you do not know my thoughts. You do not know what I know."

"What do you know?" Glenn asked.

"What is happening to nature is happening to everyone, and though we are attempting to live the way we always have, we see our rivers rising and we see the changes in the wind. Dangerous and difficult times are ahead. We are aware that our Mother Earth is being wounded greatly by the drilling for oil, the pounding of the stones for gas, of poisoning the rivers and the air. For many centuries we have tried to live separately and keep our old ways, but I have been told by the Great Spirit, we must also change. I have heard the voice of our ancestors say we must change, or it will be hard for our people."

"Why? What do you mean?" my dad said. "What do you mean you must also change?"

"Once again, your way of life is making our way of life harder, and we will become victims again of your ways," White Elk said, then took a deep, weary breath and I could tell he was tired. He opened his mouth to speak, then closed his eyes and tried catching his breath. "I cannot speak more. I must rest."

Tall Tree handed him a leather container, "Drink this water," he said then turned to us, "No more talking."

When White Elk finished drinking and handed the container back to Tall Tree, he moved his wet lips against each other, tasting the wetness. "Be patient," he said in a low, tired voice. "Be patient."

Sun Dancer and Morning Star looked at White Elk and knew it was time to leave. They stood up and motioned for us to follow them. The other Indians stayed inside for a few minutes, then followed us out of the wigwam. Outside, we stood together in a circle for a few moments. I realized we hadn’t said a word to them and didn’t know their names.

"This is Cloud." Sun Dancer then turned to the man next to him. "This is Blue Lightning. He is the father of Strong Eagle, who you met last night."

Blue Lightning had graying hair tied in a braid with the sides of his head shaved. The third man with the long scar on his cheek stepped forward. "I am Grey Fox. I am White Elk’s half brother."

We did not shake hands but stood silently. uncertain what to do or say. Alice studied their faces and I wondered what she was thinking. Morning Star stood next to Sun Dancer.

"I don’t know what my grandfather is thinking," Sun Dancer said. "What he said seems strange. I have not heard him speak like that before."

No one responded to what Sun Dancer said.

I could see the sun getting lower in the sky on the other side of the hill. I had no idea what time it was, but knew it was late afternoon. If we were going to be leaving, we had to rush or it would soon be dark and impossible to find our way back to the farm.

"We have to get going," Glenn said to Sun Dancer and turned to us. "We should go."

Suddenly, Alice spoke to Sun Dancer, "What do you think White Elk meant when he said your people are victims of America but you must also change?"

"I don’t know for sure," Sun Dancer said. "I was surprised to hear what he said. I knew he was upset when I told him your plans."

"My brother is old and his mind is not what it was," Grey Fox said.

"I know he is old, but I believe his mind is clearer than ever," Sun Dancer said. "I have spent many hours with him, hearing his stories and learning from him. His mind is very clear."

"Perhaps you’re right," Grey Fox responded, "but I’m bothered by what he said. What he is saying is a mystery to me and strange. Why must we change our ways?"

"We have to be leaving," Glenn said. "Right now, we don’t have time to be patient. It’s getting dark. How will we find our way back and get on the road?"

My dad looked down at the ground and tugged on his beard, then looked around at the circle of wigwams, the garden, the fire in the center. I wondered what he was thinking.

Then Alice surprised me when she turned to Glenn. "I think we have to stay here and not leave yet. I think we have to listen to White Elk and be patient. Maybe we can meet again tomorrow."

"I don’t see how we can do that," Glenn said. "We don’t have much food left and don’t you and Alex have school tomorrow."

"We can bring you food," Morning Star said. "I agree, it is important that you stay."

I didn't know what to say or think and was surprised when my dad spoke."I’m curious about what White Elk meant when he said your people also have to change. That surprised me. He knows something. I agree we should stay."

"You must not make plans for that land," Grey Fox said. "I don’t know why White Elk spoke as he did, but we are the council and we must all agree what will be."

No one spoke when Grey Fox made that statement, but it was clear that he wasn’t happy with what White Elk said.

"Perhaps, we can meet again tomorrow when my grandfather is rested," Sun Dancer said.

"Yes, we can meet again," Grey Fox said, "but we must be careful with what is said."

"It’s important that we stay," Alice said to Glenn, interrupting Grey Fox. "We have to stay. We can’t leave yet."

I couldn’t believe my ears when she said that. What's going on with her?

"Why do you think it’s important," Glenn asked.

"I don’t know for sure," Alice said. "I just have this feeling something important is happening," she added, then faced Morning Star.

"I agree, you must stay one more day," Morning Star said. "Stay," she repeated, her eyes lingering on Alice’s eyes before facing Glenn.

"I don’t know what to do." Glenn turned to Tammy. "What do you think?"

"I think we should stay," Tammy said, "But we will need something to eat. We’re just about out of food except for one cookie and a bag of pretzels."

"We will share our food with you,” Morning Star said.

"I think Alice is right. It’s important to stay," my dad said again.

"If you stay, we will meet again when White Elk is rested," Grey Fox said, then looked at the two men behind him.

Glenn closed his eyes and took a deep breath, "Okay, we’ll stay."

Grey Fox looked at Glenn, then at Alice and me. “We shall see you soon and learn what White Elk is saying, even though it will do no good. The council must decide.” He then walked away, limping, and Cloud and Blue Lightning followed.

"Come with me," Morning Star said to Tammy and Alice. "I will give you food from our garden and I will bring more to you in the morning."

"It’s going to be dark soon," Glenn said. "I hope we can find our way back."

When Alice and Tammy followed Morning Star to the garden, Sun Dancer watched Grey Fox and the other two men walking towards the long house. His silence made me tense. What's he thinking? He then turned to Glenn.

"I will take you back to where you're camping. I know the way well,” he said. "Please, listen to my grandfather and try to be patient."

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