Feather in the Wind

*HIATUS* For years, Feather has lived on her Wind Tribe Cherokee reserve. She lived with her mother and little sister, River. But then, the legendary "Palefaces" come to choose some natives to go to the Unknown Land. Feather is forced to leave her old life and ways to learn the knew ways of the Unknown Land's people. See what happens as Feather desperately tries to hold on to her old life.

[Rated yellow for romance.]

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2. Visit of the Palefaces

 

It was a normal mild tempered day. I was twelve years then and so was my best friend Luna. We had just finished schooling. "So, what are your plans for tonight?" she asks me. I shrug. "I haven't really made any yet. I will start probably by doing schoolwork at home and then go outside and hunt." I reply in one breath. Luna nods and sighs at the same time. She still couldn't believe I was able to convince Chief Nightsong to let me go hunting in the woods at all considering that women in our tribe weren't allowed. You see, women and men have specific roles that they have to do. Men go hunting, go to tribe meetings, make sure that the tribe is being fed properly, and look out for our tribe from enemies or intruders such as the Palefaces. Women could either stay at home and cook, clean, and take care of the kids, or she could train and become a tribe healer. If she chooses this, she cannot take care of kids properly and has to give them up because her main focus has to be healing our ill and wounded.

"I am not really sure either. I guess I am a persuasive person, huh?" I answer as we both laugh. She nods and says "Yeah. I guess you are." Then, that was when the warning bells went off. Luna and I said rushed goodbyes and hurried home to our teepees.

"Mama, what's happening?" I ask in a panic. She turns around quickly to the sound of my voice. "Feather, my child, our tribe is about to be visited once again by them." she responds. "Who's them?" I ask. She gives me a look like I already knew. Oh no. It couldn't be. The Palefaces were coming once again.

~1~

After 5 minutes of preparation for the Paleface's visit, I head outside our teepee with mama and see all of the other Wind Cherokee Indians. A little further behind our tribe, I see Luna and her family which includes her mother, father, and two younger brothers. As for me, my family includes my mother, me, and my younger sister. Our father passed away from murder when I was six years and my sister, River, was five years. Both River and my mother look terrified. I was about to say something to calm them down when the Palefaces arrived.

~Paleface's POV~

I am sickened by these people. Living like savages with no technology. Don't they see the great benefits of living like us? They wouldn't have to hunt or starve when food is gone or wouldn't get sick as often as they do because they would have the proper medicine. I don't really care. Today, we were going to take five savages between 8-16 years to come with us to show them what they are missing out on. I just hope they will cooperate so we don't have to use force like last time.

~Feather's POV~

The Palefaces are pacing up and down the line made up of our tribe. Then, a man screams and instructs. "Now listen up savages because I am only going to say this once. Five of you between the ages of 8-16 are going to be coming back with us so we can show you the wonders of technology and what not. We expect you to cooperate fully so there will be no trouble. But, if I have to resort to violence like last time, then I will without hesitation." the head Paleface commands. I lower my head. It was him. The head Paleface was the one who killed one of us because he refused to let his son go with them. The head Paleface killed my father.

5 years ago…

It was a tense day and a tense moment. Cherokee Wind Tribe leader, Eagle, was fighting the Palefaces to keep his son from being taken to the Unknown Land by them. "Look, don't make this harder than it has to be. Just let us take the boy and no one gets hurt." commands the head Paleface. Eagle sighs. "I will not let you take one of us to the wretched land of yours. This is our home and our lifestyle. If you do not agree with it, that's fine, but please leave here now." Eagle asks calmly. Eagle's eleven year son, Hawk, was looking terrified. The Paleface lost control of his emotions. "Look here savage, if you do not hand the boy over to us, then we will take him by force!" he screams. Then the Paleface quickly pulls out a silver weapon that Eagle quickly recognizes. He pushes Hawk out of the way and, as he does that, all that is heard is a loud crack noise and yell of pain.

Within 5 minutes of the yell of pain, Eagle is on the ground. Bloody and dead.

Even today, the pain is too hard to handle. I was there and I saw everything. My people screamed and cried while the Paleface grabbed my brother Hawk and stormed off with four other members. Before he passed, I kneeled down next to my father who was taking his last breaths of life. "Father! Please don't leave! We need you!" I request with tears streaming down my eyes like a smooth flowing river. "Daughter…" he begins as he slowly reaches up to touch my cheek. "You are strong, brave, and a leader. You may only be five years, but you have already grown into a wonderful young woman. I am proud of you and everything you have done. You will lead this tribe well and will take wonderful care of your sister, mother, future husband and kids. I love you and will miss you dearly. We will meet again one day, my daughter." Then he takes one last breath and slowly passes on to the other side as he closes his eyes and stops breathing.

I don't know how I handled that day. It was depressing. I will never forgive this man for as long as I live. He took away one of the most important people in my life. How could I forgive him?

It is now time for the Palefaces to choose their prey. I had my bow and quiver ready in case they tried anything funny. I was the top marksman in my tribe when it came to archery and hunting. Which is crazy because not many women actually hunt with bows and arrows. Everyone in line was dead quiet. The Palefaces already chose a 16 year named Riverstone, a girl I knew from schooling. Then they chose two young children, they were eight year twins, and the mother was hysteric. Next, they chose a 12 year boy whose name was White Hawk and his father was pleading for them not to take him. Lastly, they picked someone that I thought would never be chosen. My 11 year sister River.

I couldn't let her go. She would leave and never come back, just like my older brother Hawk. I had to do something. But what?

My sister was in tears and my mother was holding her for a moment telling her everything would be okay and that they would see each other again soon. But any Wind Tribe Cherokee with a child gone in the Unknown Land knows that children who leave…don't come back. That was when the Palefaces pried my sister off of my mother who fell to her knees sobbing. I caught myself weeping hysterically too. Then I thought back on my father's demise. I knew what I had to do for the sake of the tribe.

"Take me! Take me instead of them!" I yell to the Palefaces.

In a instant, all seven Palefaces turn and look at me. "What?" asks the head Paleface. I sigh and repeat "Take me in place for all five of them." The tribe gasps and so does the Paleface's prey. My sister begins to cry again and shakes her head no telling not to do what I was about to do.

"Why? You're saying you will go in place for all five of these savages? Why do you do that?" he asks once more getting on my nerves. I sigh again and answer; "First of all, they're not savages. They're my people and my tribe members. Yes I will go in place for all five of them and because it is my duty as the tribe leader's daughter." I say in one breath. The Paleface smirks. "We killed your foolish father because he wouldn't give up your precious brother. You're not the leader's daughter." he babbles. I clench my fists but remain calm. "Yes, my father is deceased, but my uncle is the leader now. So I am the tribe leader's niece. Are you happy now?" I ask. He chuckles and responds "Okay. You can go. The five of you can go back." the Paleface instructs. Everyone runs back, including my sister to our mama. She is now weeping hysterically into mama's shawl. I request a moment with her before I leave. "River," I start. She stops crying and looks behind her at me. "It's going to be okay. I will be alright and I promise I will come back and see you and mama. Be strong for me, okay? Here, take this to remember me by." I hand her a white swan feather from my headdress and finish up. "I love you so much and we will see each other again. I promise." I finally finish. River tears up at the sight of the feather and gives me a huge hug. "I love you too, mewee " she answers. I hug her tightly back. Then, without delay, I leave with the Palefaces to the Unknown Land, leaving everything I ever known and loved, behind.

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