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The Voyage South Part 6

Script By: Matthew Bissonnette
Historical fiction



Part 6 of the Voyage South.


Submitted:Oct 15, 2013    Reads: 1    Comments: 0    Likes: 0   


ext. river night

The widening river as it continues south, now vast flat fields of grass stretch out as far as the eye can see on either side beyond the muddy shore. It is really dark, but the faint image of the canoe moving south appears. Fletcher is in the back paddling, Louis lies in the front with his eyes closed and not snoring. He continues for awhile when he then shrugs.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Since you are awake Lafleur, if you want to speak I would not mind.

Louis scratches his beard.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

How did you know I was awake?

FLETCHER HARRISON

When you stopped snoring some hours ago, I figured you where awake. You always snore.

Louis opens his eyes and sits up in the canoe and look to the south behind him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We are nearing the end of the voyage to the southern lands. I will glad to be moving North again.

FLETCHER HARRISON

This will be the first time I rush North. I will seriously think twice about ever going more then ten miles in this direction once I'm home.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

That is a sentiment I wholly agree with.

FLETCHER HARRISON

But this has been a interesting voyage to say the least.

Louis looks back at Fletcher and frowns. He then glumly looks towards the water beside the canoe.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Interested in another test of skill, but not a skill of our trade but a skill of our character.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Sounds like a most intriguing test.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We will tell each other something that we have told no other man. I do not spend time in the company of men much Fletcher, this may be one of few chances I'll ever have.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I accept your test. You go first.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I had just spent eight months in the wilds North, it was my first time. I would have stayed longer but you by now can guess my weakness.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Eight months, but you have not said one time you have gone up there for less then a year.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I went to Montreal. I had heard from another trapper that they have the best brothels in the colonies.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I have never understood why you go there, a man with wit and charm like yourself should not have to pay for a night with a good woman.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have not met many men who can tolerate being around Louis Lafleur long, nor many women either.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I don't see why, I little rough at first, but after awhile I could see past your rather shallow exterior.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I went to the brothel where I would one day meet Nora many years later for the first time. Since I was new, I was to nervous to approach any of the women. But as I stood there I heard a voice, a very familiar voice. It took a moment before I knew who it was.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Who was it?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

My long departed father.

Fletcher stops rowing and stares at Louis.

Louis lafleur

I figured I would like to speak with him just for awhile. So I approached him. We looked much the same, though he was not a trapper the same beard was upon his face. He did not now who I was at first.

FLETCHER HARRISON

What did you he say to you Louis?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

That he had never wanted to see his bastard son Louis Lafleur again. Then he turned his back to me and laughed.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm sorry, sorry a great deal.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I then walked out of there and went North. I stayed there for almost two years. I did not trade in a single pelt. Just wandered through the wilderness surviving off the land.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I can see why you spend such long lonely nights in such foreboding lands.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have endured much pain up there, I have suffered far worse pain when am around others sometimes. But I came back because of that weakness, next time it was easier. And it helped ease some of torment.

FLETCHER HARRISON

You at first you seemed unable to take anything seriously. But the farther south we go I feel I have met a man more serious and I.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I do not encounter many men, I will admit that I like to jest. But after we had been together for awhile, I realized I was in the company of a man who was wise and may be of some help.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I have an idea Lafleur. When we get back, we'll put of seeing the women we care for and go on another voyage immediately.

Louis then looks at Fletcher and seems puzzled.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Are you serious?

FLETCHER HARRISON

We'll track down that your father. I don't think his pelt will get you much, but I think it may ease some of the demons that haunt you.

Louis lies back down and closes his eyes.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I would gladly go on another voyage with you Fletcher, but not that one. That pelt could be worth all the money in the world and it would not make it worth it to see him again.

There is silence for a moment.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Going back to sleep.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

No, I just want to think of something things. If you don't mind, can there be silence for the rest of the night.

Fletcher looks ahead and paddles. The canoe continues south.

ext. field dusk

A grassy field along the river south, to the east is a dense forest as the sun sets and darkness looms to the east. The canoe is in the center of the field near a roaring fire. Louis is in the distance throwing something at the water but he is so far away it can not be seen what he is doing exactly. Then Fletcher emerges from the forest and falls to the ground beside the fire, exhausted he lays on his back and closes his eyes. He breathes for awhile then Louis stands above him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You seem hungry Fletcher, we have not eaten in days.

Fletcher speaks with his eyes closed.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I set set the trap, I'll check it tomorrow.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Would you not like some fish partner?

Fletcher opens his eyes and see that Louis holds a large stick in both hands which has been sharpened at one end, several large fish are impaled on it. Fletcher sits up as Louis walks to the fire and kneels. He pulls out his knife and begins to gut the fish.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Where did you learn to do that?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

My second month north the first time. I was not catching much, in fact nothing in the trap I brought. I wandered through the those forsaken lands lost, almost starving.

FLETCHER HARRISON

So you figured out how to spear fish?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

It never occurred to the wise Fletcher to sharpen a stick and use it to spear fish. I thought your wise father would have taught you that one.

FLETCHER HARRISON

No, but he did show me how to use a fishing pole. Why did you wait till now to use this talent.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I only resort to this skill when I am in need, since it only reminds me of my incompetence in the beginning. But you seem like you need to eat.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Thank you Lafleur.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

The tale I told you last night has never been told and will never been told again. You carry one of Louis Lafleur most tragic tales and it is good that now someone knows of it.

While Louis's back is to him, Fletcher looks at him and seems saddened.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I would like to tell you my tale that has never been told to anyone, not even Emily.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I would greatly appreciate this tale.

Fletcher now looks to the south then glares at the grass on the ground.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I know what it is like to grow up without a father Lafleur.

Louis looks back at him and seems moved yet puzzled.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

But it sounds like you spent much time with him and he taught you everything he knew.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I told you he was a trapper like us, your sharp wit did not deduce that he was not around much.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Why much did you see your father Fletcher?

FLETCHER HARRISON

We would spend every waking minute together for about a month, every three years.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have heard of no trapper who can brave the wilds for so much time.

FLETCHER HARRISON

As soon as I was old enough to understand, one of the things he taught me was that the Harrison men had been in this trade for many generations and we where the best.

Louis then looks at the ground before him and continues to gut the fish.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We are so different yet are the same in some ways.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I would spend three years at my mothers home not far from where I live know. I always knew what day he was coming back and the time passed very slow.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You must have loved him Fletcher, at least you saw him and he told molded you into a good man.

FLETCHER HARRISON

That month every three years, he would show the skills of the Harrison trade and give me advice.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

But it is wise advice.

FLETCHER HARRISON

He wanted me to do what he did. He expected me to grow up and ram those wilds for three years at least before coming home. His advice was mostly about how you should treat others, but I knew even then when I grew up I would be alone for most of my life in those lands. I really did not want to be like him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Your father sounds like a trapper that I could greatly respect, but why be like him if you did not want to.

FLETCHER HARRISON

That job at the trade store was not my only job. I had many jobs when I was young, none lasted a week. I quickly realized that my father was right, we Harrison's have no other choice then to be trappers. But I was a lonely young man like you, the thought of being lost in those lands alone seemed like a hell which was waiting for me as a grew.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Perhaps you should tell me how Emily fits into this story, I think she may brighten it a little.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I loved her for a long time, but I did not want to be her husband. I knew she would alone for at least three years at a time. I could not do that to here.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Fletcher, I never expected you tail of hardship to be harder to bare then mine.

FLETCHER HARRISON

My father was on his death bed. He was a good trapper, and those long trips had made him a fortune. Enough to live a long time on. But I had a brother.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I am some what reluctant to know why you have not told me you had a brother.

FLETCHER HARRISON

He was older, and my father would never spend any time with him as we grew up. He was training me to carry on the the Harrison legacy. The day before he died, I went to his bedside. I begged him to give me the money to just be with Emily for many years. I told him if he loved me, then he would do it.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Your father said no.

FLETCHER HARRISON

He told me that Harrison's can't afford to love because it makes them weak, makes it harder to be up there so long. I was just his successor, my mother just meant to bear him the next Harrison. Then he gave me this knife.

Fletcher pulls the knife out from the sheath in his belt.

FLETCHER HARRISON

That son of a bitch left ever dime to my brother so he could live comfortably far away. He just gave me his knife as well as the other tools of the Harrison trade because I knew I could never be anything else and he knew by leaving me with nothing I would have no choice to live up in those lands. He was trapping me up there.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I am puzzled why you have spoken of him so kindly if he has imprisoned you in a life you hate.

Fletcher Harrison

All the advice I've been giving you about people I learned from him. It is all mine. He had advice about people all right, about how they make a liability and that they make you weak. Harrison's are meant to be alone for most of their lives.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Why do you say the advice is from him.

Fletcher HARRISON

Because I wanted a son badly. I did not want him he to know he has come from many generations of men who care more about a hellish legacy then their own children.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

When we left those weeks ago, I never suspected I met a man who carried a pain worst then mine.

Fletcher HARRISON

I built the house for Emily and lied and told her my father said it was how it was done. It was because I loved her. But even as I built it, I knew she would be alone in it most of her life, just like me. I go at most ten months, I'm good at our shared trade so I can make money quickly. My father would have spit in my face had he known I could not spend even a year up there. I hate him, but we are the same man. That is why I talk of him so much, because even he is dead I can't get away from him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You are nothing like this father who suddenly I feel is not so wise, a good trapper, but a father worse then mine. My father did what he did because he was a fool. Yours new what he was doing. I guess he was a cruel man. You are not like him because you are capable of great feats Fletcher that make even Louis Lafleur look like a novice, and it is only because you love your wife.

Fletcher then lays down on his side and looks away from him.

Fletcher HARRISON

Louis, I need to be alone with my thoughts.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Hope they are of your dear wife.

Louis continues to gut a fish as Fletcher closes his eyes.

ext. field night

The field along the river. Both Fletcher and Louis sit around the campfire. They both eat strips of meat from the cooked fist. The night is very dark as the eat in silence. Fletcher stops and looks at Louis.

Fletcher HARRISON

So who won the tail of our haunted pasts Lafleur.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You have won hands down. I never would have suspected such pain torments you Fletcher.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I spent a every waking minute of a few months as a boy being told that pain makes you weak.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have some advice partner.

Fletcher HARRISON

What is your advice.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Anytime you tell you wise advice Fletcher, be it to me or Emily, give credit to a good man and not a very cruel father. I prefer the advice of Fletcher anyways.

Fletcher HARRISON

When I get back home, I think I'm going to keep my mouth shut most of the time.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I admit my sharp wit misjudged the situation when we first met.

FLETCHER HARRISON

How is that?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

By the end of the first day, even a man with an imbecile brain could tell that in almost all respects you and I where very different men. I thought this was not going to work out.

FLETCHER HARRISON

We are not that different Lafleur. We both are men who are use to long months solitude in lands few tread.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

True. But for me that solitude is a blessing which eases my pain. I never would have guessed that solitude was such a torturous experience for you. I quickly realized those wilds held no wonder for you as they do me, but I never new it was such a prison.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm never going back that far North. No matter what it takes,

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You know the advice of a good man, who I'm sure will one day be a father himself a create a better family legacy was that what do all the women in the world mean if you let the right one get away. At first I thought it was just talk, but by now I see that love is the one thing that makes more tortured existence bearable. I still don't know what love is, but I am finding out.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm no fool, you do love this Nora. You really are going to give her your entire reward.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I intend to do that.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Why are you with so many women?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Well since this leg of the journey involves the revealing of lies, I guess I should be honest to.

FLETCHER HARRISON

What is it?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have not been with another woman since I was with Nora the first time.

Fletcher looks at Louis.

FLETCHER HARRISON

You have been lying this whole time. For what is gods name for?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I can spend no more then a few weeks out of the Northern wilds, have I asked her to marry me she would have to go North. I like solitude Fletcher, but few can bare it which I'm learning during this trip. I would have taken her North, but I know she would be even more unhappy there then where she is now.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Why did you go on with this charade about all these women. What was the point of it?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

It is a lie I believe myself. It is easier to be a unwholesome man then to admit that you are to much of a coward to be around people.

FLETCHER HARRISON

If you love her, then why don't you spend every night with her in Montreal?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Because she loves me to. We both know about the cruelty of others, but had I let her known I loved her she would find out I was not strong enough to not hide in those wilderness to be with her.

Fletcher then finishes the fish and lies down on his side and looks away.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Maybe the commander got the best to trappers for this job, but we are two strange men you and I.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You'll brave anything for the woman you love. I will not for mine.

Fletcher then closes his eyes.

FLETCHER HARRISON

If you don't mind, can we save some devastating secrets for tomorrow.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

They cannot get any worse.

Louis then lies on his back beside the fire and looks up.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm going to sleep in till noon if you don't mind. After I'll go many days without sleep.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

As will I.

Then they both fall asleep.

ext. road morning

It is morning during an overcast day as rain drizzles down from the sky. A cobblestone road runs from North to South and is surrounded on either side by dense forests. Two American soldiers are walking down road towards they south. They are two young, men, Private Collins and Private David. They walk down the road with their muskets slung across their walks.

Private Collins

I can not wait until we finally declare war.

Private David

I can.

PRIVATE COLLINS

We are soldiers. It is what we do.

PRIVATE DAVID

My father lost all his brothers in the revolutionary war as well as two uncles.

PRIVATE COLLINS

We should be in town soon. It might be the last time we are anywhere near home for awhile.

Private David then suddenly stops and Private Collins looks back at him.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Is something wrong?

Private David starts walking towards the forest to one side of the road.

PRIVATE DAVID

I need to relieve myself. I will be right back.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Be quick. I would like to get out of this rain.

Private David enters the woods.

ext. forest moments later

A part of the thick woods where the trees thin out a little and the ground is brown dirt. The two trapper's single trap lays on the ground. Private David then appears in the distance. He seems to be getting ready to unbutton the pants of his uniform when he starts looking around. When he see's the trap he stop unbuttoning his pants and quickly walks to the trap until he stands above it looking down. He then calls out.

Private David

Collins! Get over here!

Private David waits for awhile when Private Collins appears from the tree's beside him runs up to Private David and looks at him.

PRIVATE COLLINS

What is it?

Private David points towards the trap on the other ground looks at it then looks at the other man.

PRIVATE COLLINS

A trap, so what?

PRIVATE DAVID

A rider came into town a few days ago from the North. He said that two men from the colonies where headed south. There canoe and supplies had been captured but vanished. It think the rider said they had two traps.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Do you think it belongs to them?

PRIVATE DAVID

I think they might be fur trappers.

PRIVATE COLLINS

What?

PRIVATE DAVID

I dad used to tell me about these men you could spend months, even years in the farthermost regions North America. If this is their trap, they will be along to check it today.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Well let us go get help.

PRIVATE DAVID

They might return, retrieve their trap and get away. We will wait for them.

PRIVATE COLLINS

One of us should go get more soldiers.

PRIVATE DAVID

If these guys are trappers, my dad said they where some of the toughest men out there. I think we'll need to both be here. So we'll wait nearby, and when they come to get their trap, we'll have them.

Private David then walks towards some trees and Private Collins looks at him and frowns.

PRIVATE COLLINS

I wish it was not raining.

ext. field noon

It is still drizzling in the field, forest to one side and the river to the other. The campfire has been extinguished by the rain. Fletcher is standing near the snoring Louis, Fletcher is looking south. He sighs then looks down and Louis.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Lafleur, wake up. We must be going.

Louis stops snoring and sits up. He stretches out his arms and yawns then gets to his feet. He then stands beside Fletcher and looks towards the south to. There are silent for a moment until Fletcher speaks.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I have to thank you again, not the first time on this trip I had to do this.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Why are you thanking me Fletcher?

Fletcher lowers his head and looks at the ground.

FLETCHER HARRISON

It is nice that finally someone knows who Fletcher Harrison really is. I guess it is the first time in a long time where someone knows who I really am.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

There we are the same. You are the first man who knows that Louis Lafleur is not some great lover, just a coward who tells people untruths.

Fletcher HARRISON

When we left the colonies. For the first time portion of our voyage I thought Louis Lafleur an insufferable, self centered and foolish man. I also thought they had found someone who was posing as a trapper.

Louis looks at him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

You doubted my mastery of the skills of our trade?

FLETCHER Harrison

Not anymore. The Lafleur's could have been just as great as the Harrison's at what we do. Though you should leave the paddling to me.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

When we left partner, I thought I had been sent on this voyage with a humorless, serious but very brave man who I resented somewhat at first because you seemed like you had many things I wanted but could never have. I never would have thought the demons which haunt you where even more painful then mine.

Fletcher Harrison

Funny we ended up on this trip together. We both where men who misrepresented themselves.

Louis lafleur

I think we where meant to be on this voyage together.

Fletcher looks at him and seems puzzled.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I am not sure I understand what you mean Lafleur.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Our reward will free you from the hell your father cast you into. My reward will free the only woman who ever really loved me from her sadness. But I think we never would have made it this far had we not been partners.

Fletcher looks south and nods.

FLETCHER HARRISON

If we get home.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

When we get home Fletcher.

FLETCHER HARRISON

When we get home, I suppose we will go our separate ways. But I will miss you Lafleur.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I am in total agreement Fletcher.

Fletcher begins walking towards the forest slowly and Louis watches.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm going to check the trap I laid. But do my a favor Lafleur?

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Anything Fletcher.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Keep your sharp wit and your sense of humor.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

As long as you still are kind enough to give others your wisdom.

Louis watches Fletcher enter the woods.

ext. forest later

The forest where the trap lays on the ground. It is raining harder and there is the sound of thunder far of in the distance. Fletcher then appears and walks slowly towards the trap. He stands over it, sighs then kneels down to pick it up. Then the two soldiers step out from some tree's and walk up behind Fletcher with there muskets pointed at him.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Hands up!

Fletcher looks behind him and and when he sees the two soldiers he puts his hands up and his expression is blank. He watches them approach.

PRIVATE DAVID

Where is the other man you where with?

FLETCHER HARRISON

I don't know what you mean.

The two soldiers look at each other and look back at Fletcher.

PRIVATE COLLINS

You sound like you hail from the north.

Private David puts the musket right into Fletchers's face.

PRIVATE DAVID

Where is your partner!

FLETCHER HARRISON

He drowned some way north. I am alone.

Private Collins then steps towards Fletcher and pulls the knife out from the sheath in his belt. He looks at it.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Big knife.

PRIVATE DAVID

OK, you are coming this us. Try to resist and will kill you.

Fletcher looks briefly towards the direction he came then at the soldiers.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I won't resist.

Then Private David walks around so he is behind Fletcher and pressed the musket into his back.

PRIVATE DAVID

Walk!

Then they all walk off in the direction of the road.

ext. field moments later

Louis stands by the river and looks to the north.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I hope Fletcher returns to soon. I would like to be off.

Then suddenly Louis looks towards the direction that Fletcher went into the forest and seems worried.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Strange, I am have a odd feeling.

Louis then starts to run towards the forest but speaks loudly as he approaches the forest.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

The same feeling I had the autumn morning that old trapper died.

He then runs into the forest.

ext. road moments later

The cobblestone road surrounded by forest. The rain has stopped but there are flashes of lightning which sporadically cover the land with light. The two American soldiers lead Fletcher south. Private David is behind him, musket still pressed to his back, Private Collins is walking in front of them musket slung around his back and Fletcher's knife in one of his hands. Fletcher seems expressionless.

PRIVATE COLLINS

So what do you think will happen to our prisoner?

PRIVATE DAVID

They will question him. And whether he talks or not, he will spend the rest of his life in a stockade.

Private Collins laughs.

PRIVATE COLLINS

If he is used to months alone in the wilderness, then he should have no problem spending the rest of his life alone in the stockade. Guess he'll never be going home.

Fletcher suddenly stops and Private David comes to a halt behind him. Private Collins then ceases walking and looks back.

PRIVATE DAVID

Keep walking now!

Fletcher then looks over his shoulder towards the horizon to the North and suddenly he begins to breath heavily. He looks south then at the stone of the road. Private David walks around Fletcher so that both soldiers are in front of him. When Fletcher looks at him, tears have begun to form in his eyes. He breathes harder and the tears begin to run down his face.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Sure this guy is some tough trapper, is is crying.

Then Fletcher, still crying, suddenly seems to become enraged. He then throws himself at the soldiers with such speed that he knocks them both to the ground with him on top of them. Private Collins then drops the knife to the stone of the road. Fletcher then grabs the collars of both their uniforms and begins to repeatedly hit their heads into the stone of the road. When the soldiers are momentarily dazed, Fletcher stands up and looks to the north of the road and speaks lowly.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I'm coming home Emily. Right now.

Fletcher then begins to run North down the road, knife still in one of his hands. The two American soldiers then get up and ready their muskets and aim them at Fletcher.

PRIVATE COLLINS

Stop or we'll fire!

Fletcher then stops, still with tears, and looks north. He begins to breath harder and turns around. He looks at the soldiers, appearing enraged again and starts to approach the two armed men, the knife in Fletcher's hand.

PRIVATE DAVID

They guy is crazy.

PRIVATE COLLINS

I think he wants us to shoot him. We'll give him what he wants.

Fletcher starts to start to run towards the two soldiers but comes to a stop when he sees that Louis is stealthily walking up behind them. Fletcher then throws the knife to the ground and looks at them.

PRIVATE DAVID

Smart move.

Louis is now right behind the two soldiers.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Friends.

The two soldiers turn around then Louis quickly head buts both of them who then fall to the stone of the road dropping their muskets on the road, both unconscious. Louis now seems to be having trouble standing up and is putting and hand to his head in pain. Fletcher is looking at Louis and seems in shock.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have bested many a man with a blow to the head with my own. But those two Americans had the hardest heads yet. Wished I would have just knocked them out with my breath.

Fletcher then picks up the knife and returns it to its sheath. He then slowly walks up to Louis and still is in tears. When they are standing in front of each other, Louis looks at Fletcher.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Oh, have you seen your brother Fletcher. The man I have made this journey with would never cry like a woman.

Fletcher puts a hand on Louis's shoulder.

FLETCHER HARRISON

For the rest of my days, I will always been in your debt Louis. I mean that.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Well, if I ever meet your dear Emily, I will not tell her that her big, brave husband was crying. I would not think she like that.

Fletcher then nods and regains his composure. He then goes to the two soldiers muskets and picks them up. He looks back at Louis and frowns.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Come on.

Fletcher then runs into the forest. Louis still seems phased.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Well, Louis Lafleur's sharp wit is a little more dull today.

He then runs into the forest after Fletcher.

ext. river later

Later in the after noon. The canoe is now partially in the water, and Fletcher stands beside it holding the soldiers muskets in each hand. Louis stands nearby and looks to the south and the sound of thunder echoes from the distance. Fletcher then throws the two muskets into the canoe then takes the empty ones they where given from the boat and throws them into the river. Fletcher then looks at Louis.

FLETCHER HARRISON

We better get going Louis.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We are almost at the end of our journey south.

Fletcher then looks to the north a sighs deeply.

FLETCHER HARRISON

We are not going south Louis.

Louis looks back at Fletcher.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

What do you mean?

Fletcher is unable to look at him.

FLETCHER HARRISON

You know where it is my fear drives me. I know now that if I continue south, I'm going to die Louis. I'm not coming back if I go any further.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

What about Emily having to spend most of her life without you Fletcher?

FLETCHER HARRISON

If I can make it back, then at least she will see me two months of every year for the rest of our lives. It is better then her never seeing me again.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We have come a long way partner, gone through much. Now to give up.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I can't finish this voyage. Guess I am a bigger coward then you.

Louis then looks to the south.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Then I guess this is when we end our partnership.

Fletcher turns and looks at him, he seems shocked.

FLETCHER HARRISON

If it is about the reward so you can give it to Nora, your death will probably make her grief worse.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Knowing that Nora would never escape her sadness would break my heart. But Louis Lafleur's heart has been broken many times.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Then why are you going on with this?

Louis looks back at him.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

If I where to go with you and we did make it back North. One day in many years, after I returned to those wild lands, I fear I would cross paths with a great trapper named Fletcher Harrison. And I would know that he would have to spend most of his life in a hell he was cruelly tricked into.

FLETCHER HARRISON

I appreciate it, but I learn accept it.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

Meeting that day would break my heart again, and that would be one time to many.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Don't do this Louis.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I will run south, do what we came to do, and will give you the reward you where promised.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Those two soldiers will tell others. The way south is going to be more dangerous then anything we have braved yet.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

I have no choice.

FLETCHER HARRISON

We are partners. I would like you to come with me.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

We where partners, but what is more is that you are my friend Fletcher, only the second I've ever had. I am in your debt more then you are in mine.

Louis then turns to run south.

LOUIS LAFLEUR

If we never meet again, the past weeks have been some of the best of my life. Goodbye Fletcher. Give my best to your wife.

Louis starts running south along the river as Fletcher watch's and yells.

FLETCHER HARRISON

Louis! Louis!

Fletcher then see's Louis run of into the distance. Fletcher then looks North and sighs heavily.





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