The Pollock Family, 5 of 14: No Other Way

A pre-adolescent Indian child stepped into the firelight, hands over head. Thomas followed, his rifle pointed at the youngster’s back. Jessie hung behind, her eyes wide.

Sarah came forward. “You threatened her with the gun, Thomas?”

“There was no other way.” He leaned the rifle against the wagon and gestured at the child. “It looks like he’s been living on raw duck eggs and berries.”

“Poor thing.” She looked at the child, then at Thomas. “He?” she asked.

“He’s wearing breeches,” Thomas pointed out. “The long hair fooled you.”

Sarah crouched in front of the boy and reached up to gently pull down his left hand. “Hungry?” she asked.

He looked at her stoically. Jessie came forward with a piece of bread smeared with butter and jam. The boy lowered his right hand and took it cautiously. Sarah smiled and nodded, and he began to eat.

Copyright © 2015 Loretta Miles Tollefson

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