Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Story of Christmas, 2011

We sit here, all of us looking into the fire and listening to the wind blow against the flap of the Tee-Pee. It's quiet. Another Christmas in the wilderness. Made it through the year, not sure how. I stopped writing some time back because I realized as I looked back and read it, that I suffered severe anxiety and trauma from those events, and writing about it all only increased my panic attacks later...

Actually, I had lost my Survival Journal down by the creek and Winter Hawk found it again today. So here we are, Christmas Eve and suddenly, Winter Hawk jumps up and claps excitedly.

"Whoop, whoop, jingle, jingle, click, click, lip pop?!"
I draw a long breath and Crazy Elk smacks his own forehead.

"Yes, Winter Hawk, For the umpteenth time, Santa will be coming tonight!" I shout.

He claps again wildly, dancing around in place, humming 'Deck the Halls' then stops and looks at us. "Whistle, click, whistle" he says, nodding his head with a serious look on his face, his eyes cut to Crazy Elk"

"I not been naughty!" yells Crazy Elk. Winter Hawk looks up with a "tsk, tsk" sound...And as suddenly as he stopped before, he started again. He claps and leans in close now, "Cheek flip, click, lip pop, whistle"

"Aw, Big bear, we have to hear again? Him do this every night since Thanksgiving!" moans Crazy Elk.

Heck, all I want is silence, but that isn't going to happen. "Let him tell it. It keeps him occupied and we don't have to worry about putting out a fire, rebuilding the tee-pee or stitching something or someone closed....Namely me"

Winter Hawk claps some more, giggling now with excitement as he starts to act out and tell the story. I will spare you the clicks and whistles...

"Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there was a town in the North Pole. I'm not sure how they got a whole town inside that pole, but they did!...I think it was a pretty big pole and a pretty small town...So there was Santa and Mrs. Santa and a bunch of Elves working on toys, and building houses and ironing and making sandwiches and stuff...And there was one little Elf named Jake. Jake had a speech impediment, so he couldn't say Santa, he just called him Thanta...Jake was Thanta's, I mean, Santa's favorite elf, and the other elves knew it, so they didn't like Jake, and he always had to clean the reindeer stalls....One time, Santa asked, 'Where's Jake?' and another elf said, 'He is in the barn giving Blitzen a laxative!' Blitzen had gotten all stopped up from eating all those Christmas cookies...Anyways, every year, Santa has the elves polish his sleigh up real shiny, make sure the reindeer have been for a walk and done their business and then he loads his toys in his big red bag to deliver to everyone...except Crazy Elk...but one year, Jake got his coat caught on the sleigh when Santa took off. He was yelling "THANTA THANTA!!!", But Thanta, I mean Santa, couldn't hear him over the ZZ Top playing on the 8 track tape deck in the sleigh. The end"

Winter Hawk claps excitedly and sits down, rocking back and forth with a huge grin.

"That not same story you tell yesterday. Story change every day since Thanksgiving! And Crazy Elk do get gifts!" Yells Crazy Elk, now completely frustrated. "And what about Jake?!? You not even tell complete story! You insane!"

Winter Hawk shrugs, "Click, whistle"

"Him still work at stables?!?" Crazy Elk just shakes his head in disbelief and grumbles to himself.

"Wait..." I finally say. "What about the baby Jesus"

"Lip pop, click, whistle, click, Martinez" replies Winter Hawk.

"No, he does not live in Mexico and his last name is not Cortez!...Jesus, not JESUS!" I say loudly.

"" says Winter Hawk. "Click, whistle, lip smack, whistle, click"

"Well...That does makes sense. What are babies doing at the North Pole and they really are too young to understand about reindeer poop...But I am talking about the REAL meaning of Christmas here" I reply.

So I stand, and I tell them the greatest story ever told...

"Two thousand years ago, on a night that was probably as cold as tonight, a man and his wife arrived in the little town of Bethlehem. The Governor was taking a census, to see who all was in the land, and Bethlehem was where Joseph, the husband was from. but there were a lot of people in town for the same reason, and when they tried to get a room at the inn, the inn keeper told them they did not have any left. he felt bad for them though and told them if they wanted, they could stay in the stable with the animals..."

"Click, Whistle!" yells Winter Hawk

"No, not like Jake! now be quiet and let me finish!"

"...So it was there that the woman, whose name was Mary, was ready to have a child. but this was no ordinary child...This baby was the Son of God. And when it was time, she delivered the child and Angels spoke to shepherds who were watching their flocks of sheep in the fields, and told them that the baby had been born and that they would find him laying in the manger in Bethlehem. The Angels told them this was no ordinary child, too. That this baby was the Savior of the world. So they went to see the child and worshiped him, and went about telling all that they had seen. This is why we celebrate Christmas. To remember the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ that night so long ago."

I sit down now, pleased with myself at the telling of the story. I look over and Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk are silent now. I imagine they are pondering the story to themselves.

Winter Hawk jumps up, grabs a stick and runs outside. I yell after him, somewhat startled for a moment, "What are you doing?"

"Click, click, whistle, click, lip pop, whistle!" came the reply from outside.

Crazy Elk chuckles and I smile at him and he at me. I guess re-writing your Christmas message to Santa, in the dirt, so he can take your gifts to the baby Jesus...and give Jake a pay raise, is a very nice thought on Christmas Eve.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

DAY 27

 "Click, click, whoop, lip, click"

"A sweet tooth? Not much you can do about it, we don't have an candy" I say.

Winter Hawk grins, wide eyed as he claps excitedly. "Click, click, cheek flip, click, whistle!"

"Honey? like bee honey? Oh no, we aren't going through this again!" I exclaim.

"Hmm. Winter Hawk have good idea." says Crazy Elk as he sits in the corner sharpening his knife blade, looking at it while speaks. "Research show evidence of honey medical benefits. Benefits not stop at satisfying palate...Honey incredible antiseptic, antioxidant and cleansing properties for body, health, beauty and skin care, and amazing healing properties, have head-to-toe remedy, from eye conjunctivitis to athlete foot. It boosts powerful healing used thousands of years and help healing for cuts, cure ailments, disease, and correct health disorders. Makura honey not only fight infection and aid healing but also reduce inflammation and scarring. It often used for digestive problems like diarrhea, indigestion, stomach ulcers and gastroenteritis."

We both just stare at Crazy Elk now in silent shock.

"What?" He says looking up with a shrug. "Me Air Force Airman. Me learn this"

We just continue to stare for a few moments longer. Finally I speak up. "I'm not going to look for honey. No Sir! You two want to go find it, knock yourselves out, I'm staying right here!" I lay down on the furs and curl up. "Nope. not happening"

"Whistle, click, click" says Winter Hawk. "Me thought bears liked honey, too. Big Bear just scared of bees" chimes in Crazy Elk. I sit up now, irritated. "No, I am not scared of bees, I am respectful of bees and I intend to keep it that way!"

"Click, long whistle, click"
"Yep. Him scaredy Bear"

"Now look!" I say, standing up and pointing at both of them. "Every time we have went out to do something, I have been bitten, clawed, scratched, drenched, nearly drowned, pushed, thrown, flipped, rolled, dropped and stomped! You two, on the other hand, have walked away unscathed, completely untouched! Look at this, look!" I point to my head "My ear is crooked on me head!!! My nose is sideways, my eyes have been continually blackened, I have stitches across my head and in at least a half dozen places on my body!!! What will it take to satisfy your desire to finally kill me?!?! WHAT?!?!" I scream.

They both look at me now, saying nothing, then they look at each other.

"Click, whistle" says Winter Hawk smiling again.
"Yep. We go get honey" says Crazy Elk.

"Fine! You go! Go! And this time, you two can suffer the after effects yourselves! I am staying...Right...Here!!!"

"Okay, Fraidy bear, you not have to go."

Winter Hawk kneels down be side me a draws a long sigh, placing his hand on my shoulder and patting me lightly. "Whistle, click, click, whistle, click"

"Oh yeah? Well, you don't have to feel sorry for me, Winter Hawk!"

He shakes his head, looking down at me sadly now.

"It fine. Him stay here, watch out for Badger. Found tracks last night around camp" says Crazy Elk gathering his things.

"Wha..? Wait...What tracks?"


As we walk through the forest, we hear the birds singing. A sign of spring coming I thought to myself. Apparently, Winter Hawk was thinking it to, as he stopped in the middle of the trail and looked up. "Click, click, lip pop, click"

"Eggs? Are you serious right now?"
He turns and looks at me now. ""
"Him serious right now" adds Crazy Elk.

Winter Hawk starts peeling off the furs and looking up in the trees to find a nest. He points and claps wildly, then points again, laughing like a crazy man as he grabs the tree trunk and starts to climb. I shake my head as I watch him shimmy up the tree like a spider monkey. "Him climb good" says Crazy Elk. I have to agree. He looked like a minature Tarzan going from limb to limb and branch to branch.

Finally he arrives at the birds nest and looks inside. "Whistle, click, click!" he yells down. Crazy Elk raises an eyebrow. "Catch eggs? Down here? Him nuts!!!" I must have have been tuned into some other thought for a moment, because I only caught the "Him nuts" part, and as I turn to look at Crazy Elk to see what he was talking about, the egg hits me in the head. I close my eyes, realizing at that point just what he had said moments ago. I open my eyes slowly as the egg oozes down my head and into my face. Crazy Elk just stares at me, mouth open, wide eyed. Angry now, I start to speak as the second egg hits me and I feel the egg instantly shatter on my cranium. I look up, yelling, "STOP THROWING THE FREA...!!!" This time in the forehead. I just stop and look back at Crazy Elk who still has the goofy look as egg slides down my face now.

Winter Hawk came down the tree almost as fast as he went up. Smacking his hands together to get the loose bark and debris off, he starts over to where we are with a wide grin on his face and then stops walking when he looks up and sees me, the smile fading quickly, not unlike the way Crazy Elk has been staring at me this whole time. I stare back and he finally speaks, "Lip pop, click, click, whistle click?"

That was the last straw. As I rush forward, grabbing him around the neck and started choking him, shaking him hard as he flails around wildly, he lets out a scream of terror. I am yelling now. "WHY DIDN'T I CATCH THE EGSS?!?! I CAUGHT THE EGGS!!! I CAUGHT ALL THE EGGS!!!" Crazy Elk Is now pulling at me as Winter Hawk screams more, sounding like a cat who's tail is caught in a blender. Yeah, i had pretty much lost it.

I did not see Crazy Elk grab the tree limb from the ground, Nor did I hear the swishing sound as it cut through the air only to make contact with my head. I felt the thud, and heard the crack, as the limb snapped in half. I let go of Winter Hawk and grab my head, eyes clenched shut in pain now. "OWWWWWW!!!!" Crazy Elk drops the broken limb on the ground as I look back at him with one eye open now, even angrier than before. I start for him, and the look of panic crosses his face. He screams louder than Winter Hawk had been a few seconds before. the scream, sounding identical to a terrified woman echoes through the forest as he turns to run. "WHACK!" I felt the hit and then I hit the ground. Dazed, I roll over on my back and look up, as I float in and out of darkness. I see both guilty parties creep up cautiously and look down at me.

"Click, click, click, whistle, lip smack, click whistle" Winter Hawk states, shaking his head slowly.
"Yep. Him lose it. Him had too much. Pretty sure him crazy now" says Crazy Elk.
"Long whistle, click!"
"Might be good idea. Him off rocker right now"

I start to raise my hand in protest, try to say the word "No". I can hear the word in my mind, but it never makes it to my mouth in time. "WHACK!" The third blow clinches the deal and off I go to dream land.


I wake up, hearing the fire crackling. I try to sit up, but feel the pounding in my head now, and then realize I can't move my head. I feel with both hands slowly. A piece of tree bark has been tied around my neck in a makeshift neck brace. I must have moaned, because the flap of the Tee-Pee flies open and Crazy Elk looks inside. "Him awake!" I clinch my eyes closed as his yell rolls through my head like thunder, causing even more pain. "Don't yell" I whisper in a raspy voice. Winter Hawk's head pops through the entrance now and he smiles, giving a thumbs up. I moan again.

"We thought you lost mind. Had to drag you back. We not mean to hit you so hard". explains Crazy Elk as Winter Hawk shakes his head in agreement, an unconvincing sad look on his face. "Can I have something to drink?" I ask through parched lips. Winter Hawk starts clapping and runs outside the flap. A moment later, he returns with some sort of herbal tea mixture, bends down and gives me a sip. It was actually good, sweet even. I look at him. "Sweet?" I ask puzzled. He sits the cup down and claps excitedly again. "Him make with honey." says Crazy Elk. I look at them now. "Where did you find the honey?"

Winter Hawk jumps up and runs outside again. When he returns, he has a bee hive hanging from a stick and pushes it through the flap so I can see it. I can hear the buzzing loudly now. "No! NO! You need to..." And almost with perfect timing, the hive falls off the stick, hitting the ground and bursting open.

"Ohhh Snap!" "Ohhh Click!" both said at the same time.

I look up to see Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk glance at each other in surprise, jump up and run, pulling the flap closed from outside. "Wait..WAIT!!!" I scream after them.
The buzzing now at a fevered pitch as I lay there...Alone...Except for the bees, knowing bad had just gone to worse. What does one say at a time like this?

"Oh no..." Was all I could muster.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

DAY 26

Cold. Really cold. I look outside the flaps at the cloudy day as Crazy Elk stokes the fire. Winter Hawk would be bouncing off the walls if we had walls. Clicking and whistling mixed with claps and laughing as he dances around the inside of the Tee-Pee.

"What wrong with Winter Hawk, Big Bear? Him more crazy than usual"

"CLICK, CLICK, HO, HO, HO, WHISTLE, CLICK, LIP POP, CLICK!" *Clap, clap, clap* "WHISTLE CLICK!" More dancing and laughing as Crazy Elk just stares at Winter Hawk now, one eyebrow cocked up in question.

"He's just excited for Christmas is all. We promised to decorate the tree today" I reply, still looking at the sky outside.

"Hmm." say Crazy Elk, "It too cold. No decorate tree today"

Suddenly the laughing stops and I turn to see Winter Hawk standing motionless now, staring at Crazy Elk. All that could be heard is the crackling of the fire through the silence.

"" says Winter Hawk with almost a whisper. His eyes narrow, his breath deepens and becomes rapid now as his chest heaves from the pressure...And he begins to cry.

Moving to one side of the Tee=Pee away from us, he faces the wall and pulls his knees up, burying his face in his arms as he sobs now. I shoot a look at Crazy Elk who has a look of shock on his face that is probably a match for mine.

"Oh! Way to go, Crazy Jerk!" I yell.

"I not know he cry. I more worry he try scalping me!" said Crazy Elk, still looking confused by the entire situation.

I get up and walk over to the huddled form, putting my hand on Winter Hawks shoulder gently. "We will decorate the tree. We will do it today." I say softly.

I feel it before I hear it. He is laughing as he looks up at me. "Click, click, cheek flip, whistle!" He jumps up, grabs his furs and runs out of the tent. I stand there a moment, mouth open as look over at Crazy Elk. I run over to the entrance of the Tee-Pee, shouting after Winter Hawk. "WE ARE NOT SUCKERS!!!"


We have most of the tree finished now. Making pine cone ornaments, painting some with berry juice to add color some color, feathers from different birds placed randomly around the tree and then whole berries, and bones even, made into decorations. I stand back to get a better look and would have to say it didn't look bad for a makeshift wilderness Christmas tree.

We had decided to use vines taken from the forest to make garland, wrapping several around each other, braiding them together. As Crazy Elk worked on this, Winter Hawk excitedly clapped and wanted to go gather more of it. Apparently, he didn't think we had enough decorations. He returned later, walking back into camp, with little wreaths of vine he had made himself that he put around Petey and Chancey's necks. As we begin to unwind the rest of the vines he had brought, he was humming "It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas". I had to smile.

We continued to decorate, Winter hawk continued to hum, even if a bit off key from time to time, and about halfway through wrapping the last of the vines around the tree, Crazy Elk on the other side yells. "IT STUCK, BIG BEAR!"

'WHAT'S STUCK?" I ask loudly as the tree was quite big and he was on the opposite side.


I sigh deeply. Almost done and we hit a snag. "I'LL GET IT" I yell back.

I look around for something to reach the garland/vine with. We had been using sticks to put the garland around the tree, a time consuming process, but it had worked up to this point. Winter Hawk suddenly jumps up and down, clapping frantically, and whistles, then he runs around the back of the Tee-Pee. He returns a moment later with a homemade ladder. I just look at it a moment then at him. i shake my head, mostly in unbelief as Crazy Elk walks to our side of the tree.

"Where did that come from" I inquire.

"Click, click" says Winter Hawk, smiling as he hugs the ladder beside him like it is a Beauty Queen.

"You made it...How long ago did you make it?" I ask.

"Click, whistle" he says, still grinning as he runs his fingers up the wooden structure.

"Really. Our second day out here. And you are just letting us know now we had it?" the irritation in my voice coming through.

"Click" he grins.

"So let me get this straight...We had this ladder when I fell in the pit...We had this ladder when I was hanging upside down from a tree...WE HAD THIS LADDER?!?! THIS LADDER RIGHT HERE?!?!" I say, grabbing it from him now.

"...Click..." replies Winter hawk, just looking at me now.


He is quiet a moment, then replies calmly. "Whistle, lip pop, click"

Winter Hawk walks passed me to the tree and starts humming again as I stand there, the anger rising up in me as I consider choking him from behind.

Why had he not told me about the ladder? Because, he said, I had never asked about the ladder! Crazy Elk must have seen me start for him because before I even realized my feet were moving and my hands had started for Winter Hawks neck, he was between us, holding me back from the intended victim. I take a deep breath and shake it off, telling myself, "Just shake it off" over and over. It wasn't working.

I was livid by now. I grab the ladder and start for the tree.

"GET OUT OF THE WAY!" I growl.

I Put the ladder against the tree and somewhat steady it, now mumbling to myself...

"..Cause you didn't ask...What the crap?...Because I didn't ask?...I'm gonna kill him...I swear I'm gonna kill him..."

I begin to climb the ladder now, still mumbling, but I stop talking to myself to bark at the two Knotheads below me.

"HOLD THE LADDER!!!" I shout down at them.

I hear the whispers coming from below me now.

"Why you not tell him?"

"Whistle, lip pop, click"

"That no excuse"

"Click, click, whistle"

"It not matter if you would have asked"


"Shut up. You dumb"


"Shut up"

"BOTH OF YOU SHUT UP!" I finally shout down at them.

I get to the top of the ladder, reaching for the garland that is caught on the branch above me. That was when I heard it. I couldn't tell if it was me on the ladder or something else, but it sounded like...Scratching? I listen a moment and hear nothing else, then grab the garland working it loose from the branch it had been stuck on. I grip the ladder to start back down to the ground when I get struck in the side of the head by something hard.

"Oww!" I yell out, looking in time to see the acorn fall to the ground. Acorn? What the...Wait a minute, I think to myself. Scratching again. My eyes narrow in thought as I push back a limb of the tree slowly, looking cautiously into branches.

In a blink, out pops the little furry head. Startled, I scream, and startled, it screamed, too. It must have been the shock of the moment, because as the squirrel panicked, it ran the wrong way...Or maybe it meant to run at me, I don't know, Maybe I had misinterpreted what I thought was the squirrels scream of terror and it was instead its battle cry. Either way, it latched onto my face like a hairy claw.

"AHHHHHH!!!!!!" I scream again.

"TACKATACKATACKATACKA!!!!" came the high pitched rattling off from the squirrel.

I instinctively pull away hoping to put distance between me and the squirrel, but I unintentionally begin falling backward. My weight and the momentum pulled the ladder away from the tree, standing us straight up in the air like a pair of stilts.

Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk had jumped back when the ruckus started, not knowing what was going on, just hearing me scream like I was dying. Winter Hawk had grabbed his bow and arrow and took aim, ready to release the arrow when Crazy Elk threw a hand up to stop him.

"You not shoot that! You hit Big Bear!" yells Crazy Elk.

"Click, click!!" says Winter Hawk with that 'Look' in his eyes.

Throwing down the bow and arrow, he looks around for something else.

Wobbling around, I hold onto the ladder, the squirrel tightening his grip on my face as the ladder tilts side to side, walking in circles with us at the top, spinning around with us on it.

*KAWHAP!!!* is what it sounded like. Almost exactly.

It felt like my head exploded, causing me to scream louder as my eyes shut tight from the pain and scaring the squirrel even more and almost making me lose consciousness.

Meanwhile, on the ground...

...Crazy Elk grabbed the sling shot away from Winter Hawk. "What you do?!? You hit Big bear!" he yells.

"click, click, whistle, lip pop, whistle" replies Winter Hawk with a wide grin and wild eyes.

"I no care how close you come, you not hit squirrel, you hit Big bear in head!"

"Click, click" retorts Winter Hawk as he holds his hand out.

"I not give back. You shoot it again!" says Crazy Elk, oblivious it would seem to the events still unfolding on the ladder.

Winter Hawk sucks his teeth. "".

Crazy Elk quickly recognized the look and took off. Winter Hawk, lets out a war yelp pulling his knife, taking off after him.

It didn't matter really, I doubt they could have done much to stop what was about to happen. As they ran by me, the ladder finally lost it's precarious balance and fell straight into the tree. As I hit the tree, hard, the ladder twisted out from under me in the limbs and branches, coming in on top of me. The squirrel seems to see it as the chance to save himself, but not before looking me square in the eye first.

"Tackatackatacka" it says, as it's little teeth lock down on my nose, causing me to scream again in pain, then it leaps to safety somewhere in the tree.

I must say, the bite did rouse me from my nearly unconscious state, quite painfully so, and the pain of the sling shot projectile still lingered in my head. Also on the downside of this situation, I was now wide awake to feel the entire fall through the boughs of the tree all the way to the ground.

Every limb of the tree, it seemed, twisted something the wrong way, every branch, it felt, smacked against me like Mark McGuire was at the plate. Luckily, the vines we had used as garland had wrapped around me during the fall, stopping the impact with the ground by mere inches, as I hung like there, a badly tangled marionette.

Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk walk over now slowly, having stopped their chase when the fall began. Winter Hawk crouches down and looks at me in the vines.

"Click, whistle?" he asks quietly now.

I moan.

"Hmm. Ladder be good idea" says Crazy Elk, looking at the ladder now.

I moan again.

Winter Hawk stands with a long sigh, shaking his head slowly. "Click, click..."

"Yes, we redecorate" says Crazy Elk, as he looks at the tree now.

I don't remember how they finally got me down or out of the tree. Mercy was somehow shown to me as I finally passed out. It may have been the combination of pain and hanging upside down that did it, but thank the Lord that it happened.

I awoke, once again, wrapped in the furs beside the fire in the Tee-Pee. The flap was pulled back and Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk sat side by side quietly at the fire outside, looking at the now decorated tree as the sun slowly sat on the horizon. I realized I couldn't move. Splints made of branches and wrapped around different parts of my aching body kept me held firm. Upon trying to move, I realized I didn't want to move much anyway. My eyes where almost completely shut from the swollen nose bite of the squirrel and some foul odor came from the herbal salve that was rubbed on it. I just lay there and tried to breathe, though it was short breaths, from what I could figure, must be some broken ribs.

I just lay there, looking outside now. Wondering why I was allowed to live while other so mercifully died from even lesser tragedies than had befallen me.

Although these thoughts ran through my head, I had to admit, it was a very pretty for a wilderness Christmas tree.

Monday, September 12, 2011

DAY 25

Woke up early to the pre-dawn light and to sleet and snow. It was cold, really cold, and Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk were still wrapped up in their furs, the fire in the center of the Tee-Pee warming the inside of the structure as the fire crackled from time to time. Chancey and Petey lay at their feet, curled up and warm as well.

I could hear the sleet bouncing off the hide that covered the Tee-Ppee as I looked out at the cloudy, overcast morning. Perhaps today would be different from every other day so far. My body was sore from the abuse and punishment I had endured, albeit unintentionally according to the two insane people in the Tee-Pee with me. I was think of the abuse I had endured at the hands of Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk, then I heard stirring behind me and a shutter of fear tingled up my spine at the thought of them waking up and what they could think of to do to me.

As I turn to look, Winter Hawk is sitting up, rubbing his eyes. "Click, click, whistle click" he says groggily. "Yes, there is snow on the ground, and sleet too." I answered, looking back out the opening.

"Whistle click, lip pop, Ho Ho Ho, click, click."

"No, I don't think Santa is out there yet." I reply. I hear the sigh escape his lips.

", whistle, click...Cheek flip, whistle, lip pop, click!"

"No, I think when he shows up, you better not shoot one of the reindeer!"

"Click, click, whistle, click, click"

"I don't care how much meat one has on it, you don't shoot Santa's Reindeer. That is just wrong on so many levels! What happens if you hit Rudolph, huh?"

He think a moment, rubbing his chin, then his eyes light up.

"....Whistle, click, click whoop, click!"

"No, you won't have deer meat and a new flashlight!"

Crazy Elk wakes up during the exchange and looks around a moment, a sleepy confused look on his face. "Cold out. Crazy Elk not like cold. Cold make Crazy Elk shiver like Badger make Big Bear shiver" he says.

"The Badger, for your information, does not make me shiver!" I retort.

Winter Hawk whistles as he rolls his eyes and whistles as he looks up.

"Hey! Nobody asked you!" I growl at him, then look back at Crazy Elk. "And you, LAZY ELK, was suppose to bring fire wood in last night, now it is wet and iced over outside"

"Hmm. You bring in now, and sit by fire so it dry." he says, turning over in the furs.


"Click, click..." says Winter Hawk as he pulls his knife, a sinister grin on his face, his eyes wide with an excited look..

"No, I don't want to use your knife to scalp him! Put that thing away!"

Crazy Elk looks over and stares at Winter Hawk as the latter sucks his teeth and puts the knife back in it's sheath.

"He nuts, Big Bear. He not talk, he just click. He get mad, he pull knife. He dangerous like Badger. No, he WORSE than Badger"

I start wrapping up to go outside. "Oh stop exaggerating. He isn't that dangerous."

I look up in time to see Winter Hawk pulling his finger across his neck slowly as he looks at Crazy Elk with a maniacal grin. "WINTER HAWK!" I yell. He looks at me quickly, dropping his hand, and replying with an innocent look, "Click?"

I step outside, pulling the furs around my head and looking around. Cold and grey. Ugh. I go back inside the Tee-Pee. "Forget it, I'm not going back out there."

"I not go, either" Says Crazy Elk.

"Click, click" Agrees Winter Hawk.

"Well" I say, throwing some wood that was in the Tee-Pee on the fire, "I suppose we will just stay in here today until the fire dies because someone didn't bring in wood like they were suppose to. May be a good thing, considering how many times the two of you have tried to kill me"

"Oh Big Bear..." Says Crazy Elk, sitting up now, placing his hand over his heart, "...That hurt Crazy Elk. We not try to kill Big Bear. Big Bear just in wrong place, wrong time"

"Click, whistle, click, lip pop, whistle" Nods Winter Hawk as he chews on a piece of jerky now, his cheeks pooched out and a grin on his face, half teeth, half jerky.

I settle back now, looking at the fire. I thnk Iwill change the subject for now. it makes m hurt just thinking about everything. "So, if we had Christmas, what would you guys want?"

Silence follows for a few moments as they get lost in their thoughts. Suddenly Winter Hawk jumps up, clapping excitedly, the piece of jerky hanging out one side of his mouth. "Click, click, whistle, click, jingle, jingle!"

"Huh?" I ask.

"Him say we need tree" says Crazy Elk, stretching now.

"I know what he said, I am just saying 'huh', as in, where would we put the tree?" They both look around the Tee-Pee now. "I say it would be better just to decorate one of the outside trees" They both nod in agreement. I add, "So in the morning, we are going to decorate the tree and you guys figure out what you want for Christmas...Well, As much of a Christmas as we can have out here"

"Click, whistle, click, click"

"No, we won't hang Crazy Elk from the top of the tree"

"Click, whistle"

"Oh, sorry, I misunderstood, and No, we will not stick Crazy Elk on top of the tree"

"Which worse?!?" Asks Crazy Elk incredulously.

Winter Hawk laughs as he starts to run around the small interior of the Tee-Pee. He then suddenly sits down, pulls out his knife and starts to sharpen it as he whistles a song. What song is that? Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer?

Tomorrow....We decorate the tree.

Monday, August 22, 2011

DAY 24

Thanksgiving Day in the wilderness. We sit around the campfire now, Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk actually not trying to figure out a new way to kill me today.

"So" I ask, "What are you two thankful for?"

They sit and think about it a few moments, then Winter Hawk's eyes grow wide as he claps wildly. "Click, click, whistle, lip pop, click!"

Crazy Elk looks at him now. "You can't be thankful for Great Turkey coming!"

"Click, whistle, click!"

"No, that dumb! There no Great Turkey!"

Winter Hawk narrows his eyes as he points at Crazy Elk now. "...Click...Whistle...Click..."

*There no Great Turkey. Him not bring gifts. Him not real!"

Winter Hawk whoops loudly as he jumps up and leaps across the fire onto Crazy Elk. They fall back and the punching, kicking, biting, scratching and hair pulling begins. I roll my eyes and sigh as they duke it out. After a few minutes I have had enough.

"STOP!" Get to your sides of the fire! This is Thanksgiving, we aren't going to be fighting!"

"Click, click, lip pop, whistle" mumbles Winter Hawk.

"No, that isn't what I think, that is what I know!"

"Why he so crazy, Big Bear? You hit him in head when little?" he asks, dusting himself off.

"Shut it, Crazy Elk. Just sit there and be quiet"


"No one asked you, Winter Hawk!" I shout.

As they settle back and the quiet returns, I continue. "Okay, today is Thanksgiving, and time to remember what is important. Our Pilgrim Fathers came to this land to escape religious persecution. To make a new start, a new life. Their first winter was horrible. Their provisions had ran low, a number of them were sick or already dead and the winter was much harsher than they had ever planned for. The Indians of the area saw the plight of those Pilgrims, and because of them and their aid, the Pilgrims where able to survive that first winter. The Indians taught them about the land. How to plant, how to harvest, how to hunt, how to do many things on their own. Together, in having survived the first year, they celebrated and gave thanks to God for his protection and his goodness. Now, that is the story of Thanksgiving. So, again, what are you two thankful for?"

Silence and dumbfounded looks. Then Winter Hawk shakes his head.

"Click, click, whistle, lip pop, click..."

Crazy Elk draws a long breath. "What I say already? There no Great Turkey"

"CLICK CLICK!!!" yells Winter Hawk.

"Okay, Winter Hawk. you so smart, you tell story of Thanksgiving"

Winter Hawk stands now, clearing his throat and begins. He Launches into a series of clicks, pops and whistles as he acts out the scenes he is describing. I will save you the clicks and whistles and interpret the story for you here.

In the words of Winter Hawk, This is the First Thanksgiving and The Great Turkey.

...." Many many years ago, the Pilgrims decided they needed to go on a cruise, but they couldn't drive a boat because their leader had a DUI and lost his license. So they found a skipper and a first mate with a funny hat to help them because they didn't really know much about boats anyway, except that they floated.

So the Skipper and the First Mate took them out all on the cruise, a really big one with a bunch of boats, like a regatta or something. Three hours later, they were playing shuffleboard and having drinks with Gopher and Doc on the Promenade Deck when they hit bad weather. All the other boats on the cruise, except the Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria, Minnow, Edmund Fitzgerald and the Guadalupe sank...The Edmund Fitzgerald sank later at Pearl Harbor when it got bombed by the Germans...But they did picked up a chick floating on a trunk from one of the sunken boats. Her name was Rose. So anyway, they make it to America after the storm, but they didn't know where they were, so they stopped in at a convenience store and the store guy says, 'You're in Plymouth" and the Pilgrim says, 'No, I drive a Nissan, Bro!"' So they named the place Pilgrimland and built a clubhouse, which was cool because they had water slides.

So, that was when The Pilgrims met the Indians, at the 7-11, you know, when they asked where they were, and the Indian guy told them, and they became friends and the one Indian guy, his name was Karan, he says, "The Great Turkey will be coming tonight!" and the Pilgrims decorated the clubhouse and made cookies and knitted mittens and other stuff. So they all waited for the Great Turkey and drank eggnog and Captain Morgan.

So later that night, he shows up in a carriage made out of a pumpkin that was pulled by three blind mice and a Raccoon named Rusty. Wearing his red cape, the Great Turkey walks into the club house and jumps up on the table and pushes his viking helmet back, opening his velvet bag and pulling out pies, stuffing, mashed potatoes and a huge turkey with gravy and sets the table so they can eat. He also left everyone presents, fireworks, tequila and hid eggs around the clubhouse for them to find later. He table danced for a few minutes, but the Pilgrims didn't have any money because they spent it at the 7-11 with Karan, and so he jumped back in his pumpkin and says "Gobble, gobble, gobble!" and takes off. They all ran outside to wave goodbye and then they went to play football, but they didn't have a football so they had to use a baby, but it was okay because they just played touch football...And tag, they played freeze tag, too, mostly because it was really cold outside and they had no choice. Later, they drank all the tequila and it made them all get into fights, and that is why relatives still celebrate today by fighting on Thanksgiving during football! Every year since then, people have waited for the Great Turkey to come and bring gifts and hide eggs. The end"...

Winter Hawk sits down now and claps wildly again as he laughs wide-eyed to himself. "Whistle, click, click!!!"

We just sit there, dumbfounded. We stare at him, then at each other, then back at him.

"That most crazy story ever. That not happen" said Crazy Elk finally, throwing wood on the fire.

Winter Hawk stops laughing and looks over the fire at him. "Whistle, lip pop, click" he said.

"No, it is not true. you just dumb, like Beaver dumb." says Crazy Elk, poking the fire with a stick.

Winter Hawk grins as he pulls his knife out slowly. ""

In an instant, they are at it again, rolling around in the dirt. "Big Bear! He trying to scalp me again!...Big Bear!"

Needless to say, after pulling Winter Hawk off Crazy Elk, again, we decorated the camp, with pine cones, leaves and what we could find. Winter Hawk just chirps around with glee. Needless to say, we now "anxiously" await The Great Turkey.

Hey, we do that, or sleep with one eye open so Winter Hawk doesn't scalp us in our sleep.

Who knows, maybe, just maybe, The Great Turkey will show...

DAY 23

"Hmm. Need Turkey. Thanksgiving coming." says Crazy Elk.

I listen and just shake my head. We are stuck in the wilderness and Crazy Elk is talking about a thanksgiving and a turkey.

"Click, click, whistle" says Winter Hawk excitedly, licking his lips.

"How we get stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, candied yams, rolls and pumpkin pie out here?!?" ask Crazy Elk.

I just look at him.

"Hey, that what he say." he says, pointing at Winter Hawk.

Winter Hawk jumps up, runs behind the Tee-Pee, whooping and yelling like a crazy man and then back around to the fire, dragging his latest creation with him. He whistles and clicks excitedly as he shows us what he has made. Crazy Elk gets up and walks over smiling, running his fingers across the wood slowly.

"What is that?" I ask, almost too afraid to say it. Winter Hawk just stares at the wooden box, rubbing his hands together, the excited look still plastered to his face." Click, lip pop, whistle, gobble, gobble, click!" He says. I raise an eyebrow.

"A turkey trap? Really? And what kind of bait do you use to catch a turkey with?"

"Click, click?..."

"No, I don't think they eat Pie"

"Whistle, click, cheek flip, click!"

"No, they don't eat Pilgrims, either!"

He shrugs and looks at Crazy Elk, who is tapping his chin in thought. "Hmm. Turkey eat nuts. Acorn, chestnuts, berries, grasshoppers, worms. Turkey need pebbles, too. Help digest hard food..." We just stare at Crazy Elk now. "What? Me just know things."

Winter Hawk grabs some of the nuts and berries he had gathered and sticks them in his pocket. "Click, click!"

"We set this morning, give a day so turkey come." says Crazy Elk as he stands.

"Good luck guys" I say, warming my hands by the fire.

"You come, too, Big Bear"

"Click, whistle!"


"You help carry. Trap heavy."



"You not help? You not eat turkey."


"Nope. I'm not going. You aren't going to catch a turkey. you are going to catch something really, really bad, you always do, and I am going to wind up in the middle of it somehow, and it is going to hurt, and probably hurt a lot, and I ain't going!"

Winter Hawk draws a long breath, shaking his head as he bends down beside me. He pats me on the head, then looks at the fire as he speaks. "Click, lip pop, whistle, click...Whistle, click, click"

"What? I know it's okay to be scared sometimes, I....Wait, I'm not scared! I am just tired of being hurt!"

"Click, click whistle"

"No, no you don't feel my pain! You have yet to feel my pain! Let me say it again, I...AM...NOT...GOING!!!"

Now they both stare at me. Why are they looking at me like that?


"How do I get talked into these things" I mumble to myself as we half carry, half drag the trap through the woods. We climb up a small hill and come to a clearing in the forest. Sitting the trap down, we look around to find a good spot to set it up and bait it. Winter Hawk runs across the small field now, arms out, making airplane noises as he weaves back and forth. Crazy Elk goes to is look around the edges of the clearing, and me, I just sit down and wait.

Finally Crazy Elk comes back, Winter Hawk in tow, making the sound of an airplane landing. "We find spot, edge of hill. Turkey feathers up there." We pick up the trap and move to the spot. I walk over and look at the steep drop, then back away slowly. "This is a high place. It Drops into the woods and keeps going." I said. They are both oblivious to me as they set the trap up along the edge.

Winter Hawk pulls the berries from his pocket.

"Click, click, whooooo....Click, click"

"I not put berries in. This your trap. you set" says Crazy Elk, crossing his arms defiantly.

"Click, whistle, click" says Winter Hawk, narrowing his eyes at Crazy Elk.

"You build. You set trap!" He looks away, eyes closed, resigned, and refusing to take the berries from Winter Hawk.

Winter Hawk sits the berries and nuts on top of the trap and wipes his hands on his furs. He casually pulls out his knife, flicking the blade across his thumb before walking towards Crazy Elk. "Click, click, grrrr!" he says. I stand now. "STOP! You are not going to bait the trap with Crazy Elk!" Winter Hawk stops and looks at Crazy Elk, over to me, and back at Crazy Elk, eyes still narrowed. "Whistle, pop, click...." he growls low. "I don't care if you think he looks like he would be tasty for the turkeys! What is wrong with you?"

"Hmm. You look like turkey poop" says Crazy Elk, still not looking at Winter Hawk.

"Click, click, head smack, click!"

"I not look like bear butt, you look like bear butt"

"Click, click...!"

"Enough! Give me the stupid berries!" I yell. Both of them look at me now in silence.

I snatch the berries and nuts from the top of the trap, mumbling under my breath and completely frustrated with the entire affair now. Crawling through the door of the trap and inside, just fitting through the opening as I slowly make my way to the back. "Bear butt...You see my bear butt out there?!?...Big Bear butt... Always fighting...I have to do everything....Never in my..." I hear the trap door slide closed behind me. "...Life.." I finish saying quietly. "Did the door just close behind me?" I ask. I hear nothing for a few moments.

"You spring door with big bear butt. Now it locked" came the muffled reply from outside

"Well open it!" I shout.

"Click, click, click, lip pop" says Winter Hawk ad I hear knocking on the wood.

"What do you mean you can't open it?!"

"Whistle, click, click!"

"He say, turkey might open trap. They smart. He fix trap so when it close, it stay closed"

"I know what he said!!! Are you serious right now?!?"

I can feel them tugging on the door as the trap shifts around with each tug and slam against it. "How did you plan to get the turkey out if you caught one!!!" I yell. They stop. No movement. Just silence. "Click, click" comes the reply after a few moments. "Oh, nice, you didn't think that far ahead!!!"

They start pulling and pushing on the door again. That is when I feel a big shift to the side. "What are you doing?!" I ask. "I hear the strained reply. "We...Holding...Trap!!!" That doesn't sound right. "Huh? Holding trap?" That is when I remember the steep hillside we sit the trap on. "Oh no...No, no, no!!!"

That is when I hear the snap of wood, and the piece of the trap they were holding on to breaks and the trap slips sideways down the hill and begins to flip down the hill.

Over and over and over, down the side of the hill, occasionally catching air and hitting hard, to just keep rolling. Me in the box providing the heavy weight for the momentum. There was just enough room inside the trap for me to feel every single landing, every turn, every bump as his impacted the ground. It wasn't until it hit a tree on one corner, twisted in the air, landed and it begin to flip end over end, that it got really bad.

Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk just stood at the top of the hill I heard later, still holding the broken wood in their hands, a look of amazement on their faces as they watched the trap roll down the slope.

"This not good" says Crazy Elk.

"Click, click" Winter Hawk comments.

"I not break! Big Bear too big of bear. Should have had safe word"


"No, whiskey not good word...Oh! Hit tree. That gonna hurt!"

"Long whistle" says Winter hawk as he nods slowly.

When the trap hit the slick pine needles on the forest floor about half way down the hill, the wooden box went from a twisting, rolling death trap to a sliding one. Like a pinball being bounced around the forest, I slam into one tree then the next, parts of the trap begins breaking off and coming apart. I felt like the six million dollar man, but only the very beginning of the show that had the terrible accident he was involved in. I do remember some screaming and crying on my part before blacking out from the G-force, in conjunction with the impacts caused by the event. I also knew that sooner or later it had to end, probably more later than sooner given the past history of such events.

I was told when they found me, I was lodged between two trees near the foot of the hill, one forest and two rock facings later.

I woke, as I usually do, beside the fire. Well, I should say I opened my right eye beside the fire, my left eye swollen shut. I tried to talk, but my lips where too swollen to speak. I wanted to cry, but the sniffling hurt my swollen nose. I lay there, slowly moving my fingers and toes to make sure I still had all my digits and Dr. Frankenhawk had not sewn something back on wrong. Satisfied I had most of my parts still attached, I just lay there and breathed, which also hurt. Honestly, I thought, if they didn't know I was awake, it was less pain they could inflict on me.

I looked over to see Winter Hawk with a drumstick. From what I was told later, with smiles on their seemingly uncaring faces. At some point, they related, I had rolled over a turkey in the forest.

Well, I guess the trap worked after all...

Friday, July 22, 2011

DAY 22

"This it! This work big!" yells Crazy Elk.

"Whistle, cheek flip, click, whistle" came the reply of his Partner in crime.

I look from my lying position at the contraption Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk have put together and shake my head. "What exactly are you going to do with this thing?"

Crazy Elk points to the top of the hill behind our campsite. Winter Hawk laughs madly, eyes wide with excitement. "Click, click, whistle!!" as he makes all kinds of crazy motions too fast to follow with his hands, but I get the gist of it.

"Oh no! You aren't seriously thinking about trying to fly this thing? You just built it last night, and it is nothing but tree branches, some vines, a little rope and animal hide! Have you lost your ever loving minds?!?" I look at them now as they just stare blankly at me. "....Never mind" I say, shaking my head in disbelief.

"Lip pop, whistle, click, click?" Winter Hawk asks.

"No. I am not helping you carry it up the hill. I will have no part in the two of you killing yourselves with this stupid thing"


"Aw man! Don't look at me like that! This isn't going to work. I'm not falling for that look! No! That is my final answer!"

Then another voice chimes in, "You not believe in Crazy Elk. Crazy Elk Air Force man. Crazy Elk know how plane fly. Crazy Elk see plenty of planes"

"Look, none of that means you know how to build one! Or fly one for that matter!"

"Crazy Elk know!" he says, all hurt sounding now. "Crazy Elk watch! Crazy Elk not dumb!"

Winter Hawk claps and whistles wildly as he takes a run around the fire now, arms out like an airplane. Am I the only one here not insane?

.....We pull the makeshift glider/plane to the top of the hill. A steep overhang overlooks the forest beside our camp, and that is where we are headed. When we finally reach the top, Crazy Elk licks his finger and sticks it in the air, closing an eye with a look of concentration.

"Yeah, that is how all the pilots do it" I say sarcastically.

"Crazy Elk know it is" He replies, turning to find the breeze, completely missing the verbal jab I threw his way.

Winter Hawk starts to work tying ropes off to attach the hide to the glider. The more he ties, the more rope he has laying everywhere. "What are you doing?" I ask. "Click, click...long whistle, lip pop" he replies, looking over at me, still tying. "I'm just saying, that is a lot of rope. You going to use all of that?" I ask. He turns now, eyes narrowing as he stares. "...Click..." and he returns to his tying. "Fine, I won't ask anything else about it."

"Big Bear need hold this" says Crazy Elk as he lifts the bottom of the glider. "Why?" I ask. "Crazy Elk need to tie seat on. You hold while Crazy Elk tie." I walk over and hold the glider up and he begins to tie on the seat. I look around a moment, and glance over the side. "You know, that is a mighty steep drop off that ledge. I don't like you guys doing this at all. Someone is going to get seriously hurt."

Now, one thing that must always be kept in mind, especially at higher elevations, is the fact that wind gusts can occur very quickly and much more powerfully than at lower elevations...Much, much more quickly and powerful.

...The sudden gust of wind catches under the bottom of the glider, picking it up off the ground and pulling it toward the drop off. Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk jump back just in time, the seat still only half tied on. I realize the glider is taking off and I let it go of it, not wanting to go over the side with it. I jump away and to the side...Right into the tangle of ropes left by Winter Hawk.

I see the rope trailing behind the glider as it catches the air, then look down, then back at the glider, my mind piecing what is transpiring together. My mind didn't work fast enough. The rope tightens around my ankle as I look down again, then back up at the two responsible for this, their eyes wild with bewilderment, my eyes wide with fear.

As I am snatched upward I have time to hear a long whistle from Winter Hawk and the follow up words of Crazy Elk. "This not end well!!!"

My retort to such statements? "AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! OH MY GOD!!!!!!!!"

I didn't actually get snatched straight up, quite the contrary. The glider was still low enough that I was dragged mercilessly across the hilltop before being pulled off the ledge. As the wind grabbed the glider and it lifted upward, I hang upside down, hands full of grass and dirt from where I had clawed desperately to try and stop the inevitable. I hear screaming now, loud and frightening. Screams so horrifying that they would chill a grown man to his bones, then I realize they are coming from me.

I spin around underneath the glider, watching the hillside grow smaller below me as the Wright Brothers Wanna-Be's run down to the camp and into the woods, trying to follow me from the ground...Well, trying to follow the glider, because where it was going, I was going...I thought.

That was when I heard the ripping sound and looked up at the glider and saw the hide slowly tearing open across the frame. I scream louder now. The hide rips up the right side of the wood structure, and that, along with my weight pulling down on it, starts a steady and very fast circling descent into the woods below.

Everything was spinning now, and with my screaming, I sounded like a human siren, or that is what they told me later. Crazy Elk said because they couldn't see past the trees at times, it was the only way they could track me from the forest.

I should have been on the ground!!! That was the only thought running through my head Well, that and realizing I was going to probably die. Not long now, I will be on the ground again! I passed a flying crow so fast, all I heard was a loud "CAW!!" and I saw black feathers floating around behind me. Not sure where the crow went, I am guessing my reentry into the atmosphere may have burned him alive as I jetted by him to my doom.

I hit the canopy top of the forest and it did not take long to find the nearest set of branches to hit, then another, then some more. By this time, the glider has caught up with me in my fall and I get tangled up in the ropes and framework, falling... Yelling... Crying.

Then suddenly, I come to a stop, the framework and ropes now dangling me above the ground about 25 feet. This seems oddly familiar for some reason. I hear the rustling on the forest floor and look to see Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk tearing through the brush. They stop below me, looking up now.

"THAT... WAS... AWESOME!!!" yells Crazy Elk.

"Get me down!" I yell.

"Click, whistle!" says Winter Hawk as he makes a diving move with his hand and laughs excitedly and uncontrollably.

"GET ME DOWN!" I yell.

"Been better if seat fixed. We fix seat next time!" says Crazy Elk to him excitedly.

"GET ME DOWN!!! I yell louder.

"Cheek flip, click, whistle, lip pop, whistle!" Says Winter Hawk, still laughing.

"GET... ME... DOWN... NOW!!!!" I scream.

They look up at me now and i hear Crazy Elk. "I not know. Big bear look angry. Big Bear might kill Crazy Elk and Winter Hawk..." He squints his eyes now, cocking his head to the side as he looks up. "...Big Bear?...You have wet stain on fur?"

All was silent for a few moments as Winter Hawk raises an eyebrow looking at me now.

I start yelling again, and a few choice words later, Winter Hawk climbs the tree and crawls out onto the branch I am hanging from. He pulls his knife, flipping it around like a Ginsu Chef at Benihana's.

"No, NO! Don't cut the...!!!!" I shout.

Too late. I hit a few more branches on the way down and I land with a dull thud on the ground below. Crazy Elk walks over, looks down at me as I lay there, sucking for air. "Hmm. Big Bear Lucky. Branches broke fall good."

I grab for his leg, intent on biting into his Achilles tendon, but he moves... Just as Winter Hawk exits the tree, slipping on the last branch and falling himself...To land directly on top of me.

I groan now and cry a little more, unable to move from the pain as he stands up, dusting himself off with a quick whistle. Crazy Elk looks back. "That close, Winter Hawk. You could have died!" Winter Hawk nods his head quickly in agreement.

... I lay here in the camp now, realizing a full body cast is probably needed, but having to do with what Winter Hawk and Crazy Elk's sticks and bandages could do to hold me in together. Parts of me keep going numb. I don't think that is a good sign. The bright side of all this? I can't feel where they shot me anymore.