A Foreign World
November, 1862. A last battle is held in Lexington, Kentucky, cornering the Union army against the Appalachian Mountains. A surrender is filed and the Civil War ends. Now it is the middle of the month, and reconstruction has begun...
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writingbythepower
Nodding, he said, "Very good. Well, I'll be sure that he gets plenty of rest. We may need something other then whiskey for the pain, but if not I suppose that will do." Jackson nodded again, stepped over and patted Wesley on the shoulder.
2/28/2010 #331
SnowClaw of Windclan
Shannon nodded, leaving the room as Wesley made a small sound in his sleep when Jackson touched his shoulder, stirring vaguely. He dreamed of his mother, the same dream that he had been allowed every time he slipped into his sleep, as he laid there, held close and safe in his mother's arms. The dreams, if nothing else, were enough for him to continue forward on.
2/28/2010 #332
writingbythepower
Jackson could watched him stir in his bed, wondered what he could be dreaming. Whatever it was, Jackson hoped that it was comforting and that it would help Wesley strive through this. Half the battle was in the mind, and he felt that Wesley could go through that half. He hoped, at least.
2/28/2010 #333
SnowClaw of Windclan
The sound that rose from his throat was a quiet, contented one as he burrowed deeper into the now-forming nest around him, alseep on his good side with his knees unconsciously bent as far as they would go without hurting him, so that Wesley was curled up in a near-ball shape.
3/1/2010 #334
writingbythepower
Jackson smiled, knew that Wesley was comfortable, or as comfortable as he could be. Going back to his chair, he sat down and watched Wesley, specifically watching the wound. He was still concerned about that, very concerned. However, with the words of Shannon and his own thoughts, he felt good to know that Wesley would be alright.
3/1/2010 #335
SnowClaw of Windclan
The wound had--for the most part--made a vague attempt at healing itself. It was swollen, to the point where it ended within him--although draining the wound had in the long run helped relieve the pain of the infection; now all that was left to do was wait. Wesley turned his head but not his body, watching the general watching him. "Hnnh....Something wrong...?"
3/1/2010 #336
writingbythepower
"No, Wesley. Everything is very, very good." He smiled, leaned back. Everything was good. Wesley was going to be fine, his wife was on her way, his brigade was on its way... Everything was going very well indeed.
3/1/2010 #337
SnowClaw of Windclan
He nodded slightly, but still bent his head towards the infection starting at his side and moving forth until it was settled deep within his body. Perfectly polite, the damn thing, making itself right at home inside of him. I don't need my body, Infection, go on ahead and slowly kill me, I don't mind! Wesley grimaced, laid his head back down. There was no energy for frustration.
3/1/2010 #338
writingbythepower
Jackson looked at him for a moment, concerned. "Are you alright, Wesley?" Standing, he walked over to the cot where Wesley lay and looked over him.
3/1/2010 #339
SnowClaw of Windclan
Wesley frowned at his concern, closing his eyes for a moment. "Just frustrated," he breathed, "...I'm out of control, everywhere...and it's upsetting," he went on to explain to Jackson quietly, as if it took more effort for him than most would assume. All he wanted was to be back on his feet.
3/1/2010 #340
writingbythepower
Jackson nodded. Although he did not truly understand, since he had never been in this situation, he did feel sorry for Wesley. "I know, Wesley. But you've got to get through this. The sooner you rest and accept that you need to rest, the sooner you can get back on your feet."
3/1/2010 #341
SnowClaw of Windclan
Three days passed, and in that time, Wesley slowly regained his strength. Before he knew it it was November 29th, and he was on his feet again, albeit with a little pain.

It was morning now, and Riley awoke to the chill winds of November tugging at the sides of his tent. They had even touched the wild state of Texas now, and for what felt like the first time it was beginning to feel like winter.

Dressing, he sought out Jackson, found him fairly quickly. He was the only man with a full beard in the camp; the most facial hair of all ofthem was possessed by Shannon, the owner of a whiskery brown goatee. "We're going on a patrol."

3/2/2010 #342
writingbythepower
Jackson looked up from where he was, had been reading his Bible. He felt it was necessary, even in a place where was plenty of important things to do, to get a dialy worship in. Looking back down at the Bible, he thought, I better go. Anyone who can should do a job. Setting the book down by his bed spread, he smiled, "Alright. I'll go get Little Sorrel."
3/3/2010 #343
SnowClaw of Windclan
Riley nodded, standing there and chewing his tobacco for a moment before heading back over to where the White Face, tacked and ready to be mounted, was tied. The stallion, although broken, had terribly poor manners and bit at him as he mounted and untied him. As Riley waited for Jackson, he looked over at Wesley, who flanked him with a certain expression, as if he had lost confidence around the natives since the wounding. Riley forced a smile.
3/3/2010 #344
writingbythepower
Jackson mounted Little Sorrel, rode the horse over to Riley. He sat there for a moment, looked at the White Face for a moment. A beautiful, and now slightly tame creature. Then he looked up at Wesley, smiled. A list of things had happened in the short time that he had been here in Texas, but it all seemed to overwhelm him slightly.
3/3/2010 #345
SnowClaw of Windclan
Riley leaned back in the saddle, putting most of his weight farther back, and held the leather reins in his left hand as he chewed his tobacco. "We're going to be crossing the stream towards the camp," he stated, making a gesture with his free hand. Wesley and the other men nodded, and Riley spurred the White Face, honestly still not knowing his reaction. Chewing and tugging on the bit with the occasional toss of his head, the stallion started at a rough, jolting trot with too much weight on his hindquarters.
3/3/2010 #346
writingbythepower
Jackson simply nodded, followed. He didn't say anything, rode silently staring off into the distant space. It was their usual adventure, nothing out of the ordinary. Now, he began to feel the same way about all of this. No different thing the military, then Mexico or Virginia.
3/3/2010 #347
SnowClaw of Windclan
Riley continued to push his mount forward. They reached the creek, where the horse promptly decided that he did not intend on crossing. Wesley watched the area beyond with tentative eyes, silently moving a hand to his side, where the arrow had pierced his midsection. It was still sore, and troubling him now and then, but for the most part it had recovered.

With the final spurring the stallion didn't cross but jumped, clearing the two foot gap easily. Riley watched him for a moment. "He's a strong fellow." He gave the horse a pat on the neck.

3/3/2010 #348
writingbythepower
Jackson didn't pay attention to Riley, was looking at Wesley. He saw Wesley touch his side, rode over to the young man. Looking at him for a moment, he asked, "Wesley, are you alright?" The feeling had been expressed by many returning from wounds, the thought of what happened the last time they saw combat. It scared them, shocked them, or made them enraged. Either way, it never went well.
3/3/2010 #349
SnowClaw of Windclan
"It..." Wesley hesitated, still looking over in the direction of the camp. "It hurts, General, and I know that they'll attack again..." Slouching, as using the needed muscles to sit up in the saddle was hurting him, he closed his eyes for a moment. Before this, he had never felt as lacking in self confidence as he did now...

From the other side of the creek, Riley watched his friend wordlessly. The man wanted to give words of comfort, to help him--but it was as if he was unable to do it, to do much more than touch his shoulder and tell him that he would be alright...

3/3/2010 #350
writingbythepower
"I know, Wesley, I know. But do not fear tomorrow, merely worry about today. You can do this, I believe that. God would not heal you if He did not wish for you to accomplish something. It will always hurt, sometimes worse then other times. But you must remember to keep going, otherwise the wound is not here," at this moment his gestured to Wesley's side, "but here." At that, he pointed to Wesley's head. His cold blue eyes stared at the boy, and the words came out with full confidence in them. He believed those words, lived by those words. He never feared death, knew that God would take him in His own good time.
3/3/2010 #351
SnowClaw of Windclan
Wesley was silent, watching him. For a long few minutes neither moved, even the horses seemed to stay still...And slowly his arm rose, formed a stiff salute, fell back to his side like a broken ragdoll. He sat there on his horse, the wind blowing in his hair before he turned back to cross the creek. Riley had turned and started towards the designated path.
3/3/2010 #352
writingbythepower
Jackson smiled, returned the salute. Following Wesley, he thought of how the young man had changed, how the wound had changed him. It was good to know that he was better, if not physically then psychological. A wound affects everything, especially a man's mind. And now, for the first time since the wound, Jackson saw determination and even confidence flicker into Wesley's eyes.
3/3/2010 #353
SnowClaw of Windclan
As they approached the camp Riley could see and smell the smoke from the fires wafting through the air. Stopping the White Face, he adressed the men in a low tone. "We're only seeing how large the camp is, and how many are in it. Stay hidden." Chewing his tobacco, he watched the designated area from under the shadow of the brim of his hat.
3/3/2010 #354
writingbythepower
Jackson nodded, understood the mission. He rode softly, keeping a close eye on everything. More specifically, he rode beside Wesley to make sure the man was careful and did not suddenly have a change of heart during the mission.
3/3/2010 #355
SnowClaw of Windclan
Riley led, spurring the White Face forward. The stallion snorted, but it wasn't audible to those in the camp. Already, he could hear the red-skinned peoples' language, nothing like the one that he spoke and not close at all. The smell of tobacco drifted from the camp as well. He stopped his stallion, looking through the branches that formed the barrier around the camp. A few young boys were playing some sort of game with sticks, a ball, and a net, laughing and shrieking.
3/3/2010 #356
writingbythepower
Riding close by, Jackson stared at the camp as well. It did not seem threatening at the moment, all he could see were children and such running around. However, he knew better then underestimate anyone or anything. His pistol was close by his side, just in case of something. Little Sorrel began to rustle, but he calmed him down. The horse was used to loud noises, sounds of the battlefield. A quiet mission was not something he truly knew of.
3/3/2010 #357
SnowClaw of Windclan
After about ten more minutes, Riley spurred his stallion forward, pulling the reins and with effort making him trot in his jolting way back to the creek, where most of the others were gathered. As they crossed, he noted, "Their warriors are probably recovering, something along those lines." He continued to chew his tobacco, watching Jackson for a moment.
3/3/2010 #358
writingbythepower
He nodded, continued to look on at the camp. Something didn't feel right. Maybe it was because he was used to seeing an enemy in front of himself, maybe because he felt it was too easy to spy on them, whatever it was it was making him uneasy. He looked at Riley, then over to Wesley. Thinking of anything to say, he instead leaned in and continued to stare at the camp.
3/4/2010 #359
SnowClaw of Windclan
Riley watched Jackson. "No matter how long you stare at them, they're not going to trot out of the camp and line up to be shot." Chewing his tobacco and leaning back in the saddle, he started back towards the camp with Wesley at his side. He could already smell the food that Sanchez was working on, and wondered, vaguely, if Wesley would be alright to eat. As they dismounted, Wesley seemed to answer his question on his own, looking distastefully at the beef that any other day he would have been the first one to choose their cut from. "I'm not hungry." He stated, starting towards the fire and sitting down awkwardly. When he was out of earshot, Riley sighed through his nose, untacking the mustang and putting him back in the corral before joining them.
3/4/2010 #360
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