Posted by Timothy on April 08, 2000 at 18:14:23:
We now have Seamus in our possession!!! You will not believe how this all happened, but I will attempt to tell you...
You will remember that Deux Chemises and I witnessed Seamus get himself recaptured by the Shawanese, and that we had heard movement in the woods coming up behind us. We hid ouselves in the leaves next to some old downed tree trunks and awaited the source of the sounds, poised ready to strike should we be discovered. To our relief we saw that it was Many Flags, ThreeTales and Sign Talker, and they had been following the same trail we were. I had never seen Flags nor Tales, but Deux Chemises knew Sign Talker, and by the smile on Deux Chemises face, I knew instantly who they were. Fortunately we were all far enough from the enemy camp that we were not seen by them. We immediately left the trail and went a distance away so we could make plans without interruption from any approaching war party. We decided to strike after dark and, hopefully,before other Shawanese arrived. After making our plan, we returned to where we could observe the goings-on in the Indian camp, and discovered that one of the other parties had returned. We still thought we could pull it off. About an hour later, just before dusk, the remaining party arrived in the company of M. du Ranck. We decided to wait until early morning to make our move....counting on grogginess from being awakened from a sound sleep to be an ally. However, it was not to be.
M. du Ranck was openly very hostile to Seamus, clubbing him with the butt of his fusil, and kicking him, while spouting venomous French expletives. He was a raging madman; we feared greatly that he would kill Seamus in his anger. The leader of the Shawanese tried to stop the cruelties to no avail, and the heathens allowed M. du Ranck to have his way. I believe they are afraid of him, Malcolm. I cannot imagine what hold he has over them, as they usually fear no one.
Finally, M. du Ranck had vented his anger and went to sit by himself. Several of the Shawanese went over to the stream to get water, and suddenly we hear "Baaaaahh!! Baaaaah!"" and several sheep appear in the clearing, running toward the Indians, followed by several more sheep, all crying loudly, "Baaaaaah! Baaaaah!!!", and an apparition....I cannot describe it as anything else.....calling, "Nephew Seamus!! I am here! Attack, my dearies!! Attack!!" The Shawanese are startled and suddenly scream and run away into the forest, yelling "Spirit People! Spirit People!" The sheep and the apparition pursue them, leaving M. du Ranck alone with Seamus. He looks across the clearing, and then roars like I have never heard before, and charges across at Seamus, who is sitting tied to a tree. As he closes the distance rapidly between them, the would-be assassin is wildly swinging his tomahawk through the air, making awful swishing sounds, and just as he is poised to drive his instrument of death through Seamus's skull, it happens. Without thinking or realizing it, I had mounted my longrifle and, touched the trigger, sending the ball crashing through M. du Ranck's head, dropping him on the spot, his tomahawk falling harmlessly next to him. We all ran to the clearing and released Seamus from his captivity, hugging and crying...all of us. We looked after Seamus's wounds as best we could, and decided we should start out toward the east and home. Since the moon would be full we could journey at night in relative safety, now that Uncle Angus had eliminated the Shawanese threat. Deux Chemises and Sign Talker were standing off by themselves, and before we left they came to me and bade me accompany them. They took me to the lifeless form of du Ranck, and with ceremony, they instructed me in the fine art of scalping. They said I was a warrior now, and painted my face with du Ranck's blood. Since Seamus had no weapons, we took the rifle-gun, bag and powder horn, and the knife from him, as well as the tomahawk which so nearly ended his life. Malcolm, these items I recognized as belonging to Ranger Kuhns and were taken when he was killed at Ostonwaken. We clothed Seamus in breeches, shirt and mocassins we found in du Ranck's pack and started on our way. Many Flags says we should head for Fort Loudon, as you will probably have left Fort Morris by the time we would arrive there. Because of Seamus's condition, it will likely take us more than a week to reach Fort Loudoun. I cannot tell you the joy that abounds in this camp! If at all possible, get word to Gloria and Nancy. I am sure they will want to know the good news!
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