The leaves rustled in the breeze and the Georgian
sniffed the crisp night air. He loved living in Texas. The golden
grass, blue skies, untamed wilderness, all wonderful. A hard life
at times to be sure, but all the misfortunes were a minor
consequence to living in such beauty.
Tonight was a good night to be out, with countless
stars twinkling brightly in the Milky Way. It was good night for an
Indian raid. He shivered in fear. The only reason he was out here
instead of his cabin was to raise the alarm if the Comanche struck
again. They had lighted fire to the barn and tried to burn the
The damage to the barn was repairable, by all means,
but it would take time to rebuild half the barn and to gather more
cotton from the fields. He'd have all his slaves working the fields
tomorrow, he decided with a slight nod to himself as he shifted
position on the log. Maybe his wife would cook a fresh, steaming
loaf of bread and they would eat it with butter from his
cow tomorrow. Her bread was delicious.
The farmer felt tired, but it was still another
three hours or so before his watch ended. Maybe, maybe he'd close
his eyes for a bit. Yeah, just for a little while. His chin began
to lower to his chest and his eyelids were slowly beginning to
droop. It would be a short rest, then he'd be more... alert.
His head whipped up toward the direction of the
sound but his senses were still fogged with sleep. He blinked and
tried to focus. When a bush suddenly rustled---whether it was by
the wind or something else, he wasn't sure---adrenaline began to
course through his blood, sharpening his senses.
The man stood, ready to face the threat, but the
shadows cast around in the bushes hid whatever had broken the twig.
He began to regret building his house among the trees. Just as he
was about to return his thoughts towards tomorrow's plans, he saw a
flash of silver down on his right and stood, facing in that
direction, when leaves were suddenly scuffed to his left. He felt
sweat bead on his forehead as he wheeled around on his heel, the
hairs on the back of his neck stood on end as another stick snapped
directly in front of him, but nothing was in sight. The man
nervously clutched the handle of the ten-inch Bowie Knife he always
kept with him. It had been given to him as a gift from a friend
that had bought it from James Black himself a few years back. The
blade's tempered steel whispered as it slid smoothly from its
Something shifted underneath a large bush and the
usually mild-mannered Georgian slashed in the direction of the
movement wildly, attacking the bush as he screamed an unbroken
chain of profanity at nothing in particular until he was gasping
for breath, his throat sore. The bush was no longer a bush.
He laughed softly at himself, feeling humbled by his
foolishness when he saw a deer's silhouette as it bounded
erratically away, sticks snapping occasionally under its hooves. A
raccoon tail caught his eye as it disappeared behind a tree. That
was all it was, some dumb animals. And he had thought they were
Comanches. It was amazing what the imagination could do the mind
during the dark of night.
This will be an interesting story to tell the
boys, he thought, as he slid the Bowie Knife back into its
sheath and glanced around mildly, wondering if his wife heard
"John, are you there? John?" His wife was yelled
frantically for him.
John sighed, irritated, and turned towards the
cabin, cupped his hands over his mouth and yelled, "It's alright
Mary, just a coon is all. You an' the boys can go back to sleep
John turned back towards the woods when a large
shape unexpectedly exploded towards him from the mangled bush and
tackled him. Desperately, he jabbed his elbow back randomly behind
him and was rewarded by the clack of teeth striking against each
other and a muffled grunt. His victory was sort-lived, however, as
gravity brought them into contact with the ground. His
assailant---a Comanche---managed to gain the advantage almost
instantly, with fatal consequences. The merciless Indian bought his
arm around the farmer's neck before he could yell out a warning and
cleanly slit John's throat below the larynx, assuring a silent
death and stopping him from raising the alarm.
The Comanches then moved on to set flame to the
cabin and the ill-omened white inhabitants within. They calmly
walked away as a woman began to scream. She won't be able to escape
the cabin, the fire had spread and was already engulfing the house.
White man will not be permitted to encroach upon their sacred lands
any longer and will regret their mistakes. They will teach white
man a lesson not to be forgotten.