Black Horse

Black Horse by Veronica Blake

Book: Black Horse by Veronica Blake Read Free Book Online
Authors: Veronica Blake
Tags: Fiction
with each passing second.A defeated sigh escaped from his parted lips. He shook with the realization that he was falling so completely in love with her that nothing else mattered. He cleared his throat loudly, but could not clear his confused thoughts.
    “Why were you looking for me to night?” Black Horse asked. His voice had dropped to barely more than a whisper now, and he trembled as he waited for her reply.
    Meadow drew in a quivering breath as she stared up at his face. “I—I came because…” Her mind groped for the right words to express the way she felt at this moment. “Because I cannot imagine waking up to another sunrise if I am not in your arms. I want nothing more than to be your wife and spend the rest of my life with you,” she said in a shaky voice.
    Black Horse remained silent and unmoving as though he was contemplating her words. His eyes never left her face as he said, “You must know that to be my woman—my wife—in every way means that you will have to deny your true heritage for as long as we are together, for as long as we live.”
    “I have proven my loyalty to the Sioux,” Meadow retorted. “White Buffalo has never kept me here against my will.”
    “When the last of the Sioux are dying of starvation and there is nowhere else to hide, will you still be so loyal?”
    The meaning of his question cut deep into Meadow’s pride. It pained her to think that he doubted her devotion to the Sioux in any way. She had never once considered returning to the whites if life here becametoo difficult. Somehow, she had to make Black Horse realize her true feelings if they were going to have a future together.
    “I have not forgotten that the Sioux killed my white family,” Meadow said with a slight quiver in her voice. “But I have also seen what the wasichu have done to the Indians. And like you,” she continued with a forceful tone as she brought her fist to her chest, “I will die for my people.” Her stance straightened in a proud manner as she added, “And the Sioux are my people now and forever!”
    He stared at her in silence for a moment. “As my woman,” he said in a hoarse voice, “you will have to understand that there are things that I must do.”
    “As your woman, I would make it my duty to understand and support whatever it is that you must do.” She imagined that he was referring to the raids that he had been conducting down in Montana on the ranchers’ and the American soldiers’ livestock and supplies. The thought of him leaving her for these dangerous escapades was not something she looked forward to, but she knew he would expect her to accept that this was his way of helping his people.
    “It’s more than killing the white man’s cattle or stealing his whiskey,” he said, as if he could read her thoughts. He added more forcefully, “I am not ready to admit defeat against the wasichu .”
    As his meaning became evident, a worried gasp escaped from Meadow. “But Sitting Bull has said that there is to be no more fighting with the whites.”
    Black Horse dropped his head down and stared at the ground. “I understand why Sitting Bull and the other chiefs have brought our people here to Canada.The old ones and the women and children are weak, and too tired to fight anymore.” His head rose up as he looked at her again. “But I will never understand their decision to give up completely.” Black Horse shook his head slowly. His voice was low and determined when he added, “I will never stop fighting for my people and the land that is rightfully ours. Never!”
    An icy chill whipped through Meadow. She knew Black Horse meant every word he said, and she had no doubts that he was prepared to face the consequences. If he went against Sitting Bull’s orders, he could be cast out of the tribe, and she along with him, if they were married.
    Letting his words settle in her mind, Meadow turned away from him and stared out at the calm waters of the river. Life here could be

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