Savage Dawn

Savage Dawn by Cassie Edwards

Book: Savage Dawn by Cassie Edwards Read Free Book Online
Authors: Cassie Edwards
Tags: Fiction
lovingly up at him. “The disease that made me so ill, and killed my wife, was not smallpox, but instead a white man’s disease called measles. I survived. I am well. I will now resume my duties as your chief.”
    “What is this thing called measles?” one of his warriors asked as he stepped closer to Eagle Wolf. His eyes moved slowly over his chief, taking in the fading red spots on his body. “How do you know of it?”
    “A woman found me when I was feverish and stopped to care for me,” Eagle Wolf said, purposely not telling them that this woman waswhite, or that she had found her way inside his heart. “She explained to me that the red spots were measles, not smallpox.”
    “What woman?” another warrior asked. “Where is she now?”
    Although it was not his habit to ignore questions asked him by his people, Eagle Wolf did not want to talk about Nicole Tyler. He did not want to reveal to his people that she was white.
    “Is it not enough that I am with you again, and that I am well?” Eagle Wolf asked.
    There was a strange sort of silence brought on by his obvious reluctance to speak any more of this mysterious woman. To break the awkward moment, he turned and gazed at the large, new tepee.
    “This is a very fine lodge,” he said, lifting the entrance flap and looking around inside before entering.
    What he saw made his eyes widen. He had not expected to see any belongings in the lodge since everything he had owned had been burned.
    But what he saw had nothing to do with him at all. Although there were only a few items, he recognized them as the possessions of his brother and his wife.
    He turned and looked questioningly at the warrior closest to his side.
    “Your brother and wife were moving their belongings today into the tepee that was built for you, my chief,” Three Bears said uncomfortably.“No one questioned him because he was at that time acting chief.”
    Three Bears looked over at the tepee where Spirit Wolf had gone, and then at Eagle Wolf again. “His lodge still stands, yet it would have not been his by evening. By then all of his belongings would have been in the tepee that was built for your return.”
    “He did not expect my recovery,” Eagle Wolf said thickly.
    “Seems not,” Three Bears said. “I believe he prayed that you would not return. He is a brother who should no longer be called a brother. He never should have had the title of chief, not even for a short while. Chiefs are chosen for wisdom and high character, and Spirit Wolf has neither.”
    Eagle Wolf listened to those words with an aching heart. He loved his younger brother, but was not proud of him.
    He nodded at Three Bears, to let him know that he had heard him and respected his feelings, but Eagle Wolf needed time alone now, for he had much to think about.
    After stepping into his new lodge, he again looked slowly around at his brother’s belongings. He knew that there was only one thing to do. He began by taking one item and then another and tossing them outside on the ground, as his people watched, silent.
    As each thing was thrown from his lodge, Eagle Wolf became angrier and angrier at SpiritWolf. His brother had proved his disloyalty and lack of love.
    Eagle Wolf was disappointed, but glad that he knew of his brother’s betrayal. No longer would he be made a fool of by a brother who felt nothing but jealousy toward him.
    When everything had finally been cleared from his lodge, Eagle Wolf went inside, alone.
    He was dispirited as he sat on a mat before the freshly made fire. The firelight now shone brightly on a face that revealed his shock over the truth of his brother’s feelings toward him. He felt a disappointment in Spirit Wolf that would surely stay with Eagle Wolf until death.
    Suddenly his thoughts were interrupted. One by one, his people came to him, speaking his name outside his lodge.
    And when he went and held the entrance flap aside, he saw each one’s arms heavy-laden with gifts for him.

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