Oak Openings eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 515 pages of information about Oak Openings.
more remote from the stream, than the filled.  The latter had held together until it went over the low rocky precipice, already mentioned, and was stove at its base, within two yards of the torrent, which received all its fragments and swept them away, including most of the liquor itself; but not until the last had been spilled.  Now, the odorous spot which had attracted the noses of the savages, and near which they had built their fire, was that where the smallest quantity of the whiskey had fallen.  Le Bourdon reasoned on these circumstances in this wise:—­if half a barrel of the liquor can produce so strong a scent, a barrel filled ought to produce one still stronger; and I will manifest my medicine-character, by disregarding for the present moment the spot on the hill-side, and proceed at once to that at the foot of the rocks.  To this latter point, therefore, did he direct all the ceremony, as well as his own footsteps, when he yielded to the solicitations of the Pottawattamies, and undertook to point out the position of the whiskey spring.

The bee-hunter understood the Indian character too well to forget to embellish his work with a proper amount of jugglery and acting.  Luckily, he had left in the canoe a sort of frock of mottled colors that he had made himself, to wear in the woods in the autumn as a hunting-dress, under the notion that such a covering would conceal his approach from his game, by blending its hues with those of the autumn leaf.  This dress he now assumed, extorting a good deal of half-suppressed admiration from the younger warriors, by the gay appearance he made.  Then he drew out his spy-glass to its greatest length, making various mysterious signs and gestures as he did so.  This glass proved to be a great auxiliary, and possibly alone kept the doubters in awe.  Le Bourdon saw at once that it was entirely new, even to the oldest chief, and he felt how much it might be made to assist him.  Beckoning to Cloud, and adjusting the focus, he directed the small end of his glass to the fire, and placed the large end to that Indian’s eye.  A solitary savage, who loved the scent of whiskey too much to tear himself away from the spot, was lingering within the influence of the rays, and of course was seen by the chief, with his person diminished to that of a dwarf, and his form thrown to a seeming distance.

An eloquent exclamation followed this exhibition of the medicine-man’s power; and each of the chiefs, and most of the other warriors, were gratified with looks through the glass.

“What dat mean?” demanded Cloud, earnestly.  “See Wolfeye well ’nough—­why he so little?—­why he so far off, he?”

“That is to show you what a medicine-man of the pale-faces can do, when he is so minded.  That Indian is named Wolfseye, and he loves whiskey too well.  That I know, as well as I know his name.”

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Oak Openings from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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