The Glory of Revenge

From the Wagon Train Diaries





The band of Opium traders did exactly as they said. Ten miles out they left the abducted children outside a small town called Union Pointe Pass. That small town consisted of one long street that ran parallel to the mountains. Both sides of the street were lined with buildings that looked like they were hugging each other. Some of those buildings were created from scrap lumber from old wagons.

There was a small shack that passed for a general store, and there were at least two dozen saloons. At the end of the street were four, oversized wagons hitched up together and without wheels used by the prostitutes while they practiced their calling.

The children were now safe and placed with Audrey Reynolds. She was a teacher on the wagon train. She was charged with finding homes and families for the orphaned children. Her job was going to be very difficult, but the Wagon Master Alastar Brown had all the confidence in her abilities to help the children.

When the wagon train scout White Deer came back to the train he had a disturbing conversation with an Indian Chief name Dark Bear. He was told by Dark Bear that they had intercepted the Opium traders right before the great mountains. He had heard of the strange medicine they carried called Opium and he wanted it. They put up a valiant effort, but were slaughtered in the end. He hadn’t realized that the Opium traders consisted of not only men, but women and children as well. They fought like true warriors. He also learned that the leader of these drug bandits had escaped to the mountains on foot. Chief Dark Bear did not give chase because of the big storm that was filling the sky.

“The old man, you think he’ll make it?” asked Alastar.

“This big storm heading our way will put and end to that old man,” White Deer replied. “However, if he found a decent cave to weather the storm, he may just live.”

Alastar grimaced.

“What I can’t understand is why that old man allowed children and women to fight against Dark Bear’s tribe. He knew they wouldn’t have a chance. Why couldn’t he just give up half of the Opium to save his clan?”

“Greed my friend, it’s called greed.”

“Well Alastar, his greed caused so many losses of lives,” said the scout somberly. “The priest, the children’s parents, his own clan, and still he remain alive.”

“I hate to wish death on anyone, but damn it, wouldn’t his death be sweet?”

The scout nodded slowly.


Hungry, lost and tired, he hung there in the shifting winds. Clouds writhing behind him like a monstrous shadow in terrible torment. The thunder rumbled and the wind howled and moaned. The moon would track his progress from its place up in the sky. Playing that hide and seek game with the dark clouds.

The old man would test his faith in the face of danger, as a hungry wolf came down from one of the mountain tops. It barked loudly as it reared and clawed at the air. The old man tried to avoid the beast; he tried to give the wolf all the space it needed. After all, cornered animals were always the most dangerous kind.

The wolf pawed the wet ground and there was a growl trapped deep in its throat. The old man eyed the beast as it rose up on hind legs for about fifteen seconds. He vowed that he will show no fear. He raised his right hand as if to strike, but that wasn’t necessary, because of a large crack in the sky and a lightning bolt struck a pile of rocks causing them to crumble on top of the wolf.

The wolf couldn’t move, but it was still very much alive. Its eyes were drawn to the old man instantly, like lighting drawn to an iron rod. The old man’s heart was beating like a drum, even harder and louder than the thunder that followed.

Even after the old man discovered that the wolf was incapacitated, he still smashed and stomped at the beast. He refused to let up, refused to stop pounding at the wolf. He was replacing savagery with even greater savagery.

The wolf was the only one who bled and fell after the lightning struck the rocks, but then to be crushed under the boots of its enemy was just overkill. The old man could smell the sweat and the scent of blood, feel the numbing impact on his foot as he kept stomping away. He kept picturing the face of Chief Dark Bear beneath every stomp. This was what it felt like to be invincible, to pit strength and fury against strength and fury.

The old man couldn’t just let the wolf be washed away by the rains. His kill would also be best served hot on a blazing flame. To the victor go the spoils. He dragged the wolf into a near by cave, with a smile on his face he nodded approvingly.

Only one would live, and the other would become a meal. While in the cave he found a sharp edged rock and used it to decapitate his kill. As the wolf’s head rolled away from the body, it became tangled briefly under the paws of a pack leader. The old man turned around and shock shook him to the core. Eleven hungry wolves surrounded him as the smell of blood invaded their noses.

The old man reflected on the uncanny accuracy of faith. An eye for and eye was the last thought that ran through his mind.

That night sky, packed tightly with low, brooding clouds, rumbled softly, as if to let the Wagon Master know that the Opium trader has been neutralized. The rains came harder as death echoed from cloud to cloud.

In White Deer’s ears, there could have been no more rewarding sound then the spirits wrapping themselves up in the glory of revenge.






#

© 2013 Frank Atanacio

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Comments 40 comments

Gawth profile image

Gawth 3 years ago from Millboro, Virginia

A nice piece of writing. Thanks.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks Gawth


MsDora profile image

MsDora 3 years ago from The Caribbean

You really built us up for the kill. You do that exceptionally well. I also like the contrast of so many people at the start, with that one person you would have us focus on at the end. Good job!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much MsDora for reading my Diary


tobusiness profile image

tobusiness 3 years ago from Bedfordshire, U.K

Frank, what goes around, comes around. Nicely done. :)


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you tobusiness :)


MrsBrownsParlour profile image

MrsBrownsParlour 3 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

Dark and tragic twists and turns, very engaging!! The last line implies a spiritual justice/revenge, wrought between animal, storm and the native Americans against the criminal---intriguing! ~Lurana


btrbell profile image

btrbell 3 years ago from Mesa, AZ

Great story! I loved the last sentence!


Faith Reaper profile image

Faith Reaper 3 years ago from southern USA

Oh, wow, this is great! Very descriptive and excellent story, very gripping to say the least. Great ending.

Voted up +++ and sharing

God bless, Faith Reaper


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much MrsBrownsparlour for reading my wagon train diaries and thank you Faith for being faithful to the little series and thanks for visiting my page btrbell bless you all


wayne barrett profile image

wayne barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

Wow, you really carried me along with this episode, Frank. Just when I thought the old man was going to be a future threat...intro, wolves! Great job my friend. Voting up and sharing.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you wayne barrett for following the diaries :)


LaThing profile image

LaThing 3 years ago from From a World Within, USA

Very impressive and fascinating writing, Frank! Glad you are continuing this story, can't get enough of it :)

Thanks for sharing.....


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Lathing.. I started it I think twelve months ago and it went strong then thats why I brought it back.. glad you like it :)


Seeker7 profile image

Seeker7 3 years ago from Fife, Scotland

No matter how many stories you write the endings are always a most startling and pleasant shock! The wolf being one of my favourite animals I took great delight in this particular gruesome ending - a nice touch with the animals intertwined with karma and the spiritual! My friend you are awesome!


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

oh go on seeker7.. i mean it keep going on LOL thanks a bunch


BlossomSB profile image

BlossomSB 3 years ago from Victoria, Australia

A gripping story and I'm so glad it has not yet ended, although I cannot imagine a greater climax.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much blossoms :)


Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

Gypsy Rose Lee 3 years ago from Riga, Latvia

Voted up and awesome. Fascinating. I love these stories Frank. Enjoyed. Passing this on.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you Gypsy :)


Lisawilliamsj profile image

Lisawilliamsj 3 years ago

Frank, Wow talk about Karma! He definitely got what was coming to him! This is such a great story, I can't wait to read more.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks so much Lisa :)


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 3 years ago from Nepal

You reap, what you sowed. I enjoyed reading how retribution came.

Very enjoyable read.


Valleypoet 3 years ago

This was probably the best in the series yet Frank...a rather satisfying ending too!..an excellent read buddy :-))


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks Vin for stopping by and reading my revenge


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

And thank you too Valley Poet Junction for following my little Wagon Train Series.. im glad you liked it :)


Jackie Lynnley profile image

Jackie Lynnley 3 years ago from The Beautiful South

Very good, glad to see your writing expanding. You do have a real talent.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you :)


lovedoctor926 3 years ago

I've been enjoying your Wagon Train series. This story held my attention from start to finish.


Sueswan 3 years ago

Hi Frank

"The rains came harder as death echoed from cloud to cloud." Outstanding imagery. Awesome write my friend.

Voted up +++ and sharing.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 3 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Lovedoctor926 and you too Sueswan for visiting my Diaries :)


epigramman profile image

epigramman 3 years ago

Well you write, Frank, like the movie which was intended for viewing in my cinematic mind and I always take this opportunity to say you are one of my favorite writers anytime - anywhere - anyplace - always inspired when I arrive here.

Sending warm wishes from Colin and his pussycats at at lake erie time 2:24pm


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Epi :)


sujaya venkatesh profile image

sujaya venkatesh 2 years ago

very picturesque frnk


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thanks for stopping by s.v


Jane Arden 2 years ago

I always get caught up with the suspense of it all and you never let me down. I find reaching that crescendo of a tragic end quite hard to put into words, but you always find exactly the right things to say.


savvydating profile image

savvydating 2 years ago

Hubpages is lucky to have you Frank. Your stories are fascinating... always a lesson to be learned from them. A phrase comes to mind, "Vengeance is mine," saith the Lord. In other words, the man could have left well enough alone; fate had taken cares of things, however, given his anger at the Chief, it makes sense that Alasstar, who represents all of us, would likely have chosen to go in for the final kill. It was his greed that killed him.

Up & awesome.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you so much Jane and Savydating for visiting my page :)


ubanichijioke profile image

ubanichijioke 2 years ago from Lagos

Wow! I love the way you told of the kill. It made a sweet read! You are the great storyteller. Good job.


Frank Atanacio profile image

Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton Author

thank you uban :)

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