Readers may select from a range of plot alternatives that determine the course of the action in the story of an Indian child's struggle to end a drought by finding the rain gods.
It was to Henry a return rather than a removal. He almost fancied that in some far-off age he had seen all these things before. The forests and the mountains beckoned in friendly fashion; they had no terrors, for even their secrets lay open before him. He seemed to breathe a newer and keener air than that of the old land left behind, and his mind expanded with the thought of fresh pleasures to come. The veteran guide, Ross, alone observed how the boy learned, through intuition, ways of the wilderness that others achieved only by hard experience. They had met fair weather, an important item in such a journey, and there had been no illness, beyond trifling ailments quickly cured. As they traveled slowly and at their ease, it took them a long time to pass through the settled regions. This part of the journey did not interest Henry so much. He was eager for the forests and the great wilderness where his fancy had already gone before. He wanted to see deer and bears and buffaloes, trees bigger than any that grew in Maryland, and mountains and mighty rivers. But they left the settlements behind at last, and came to the unbroken forest. Here he found his hopes fulfilled. They were on the first slopes of the mountains that divide Virginia from Kentucky, and the bold, wild nature of the country pleased him. He had never seen mountains before, and he felt the dignity and grandeur of the peaks.
There was bad blood between Hoyt and the Bonnetts. He carried the bullet scar where Riley, a Texas Ranger, had almost killed him. Leaving one dead in the dusty streets of El Paso, Hoyt and his partner made a run for it. Miles away they stopped in the small town of Jacksboro and to Hoyt's good fortune, he became the sheriff. He devised a scheme where he could relieve the town of its bankroll and kill two more Bonnetts in the process, then retire to some remote area and live out his life in ease. But some men don't kill easy and the Bonnetts were men from a feuding clan. They had been up the creek and over the mountain and to them 'root hog or die' was a way of life.
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