THE WOLF FOLK SERIES
REBUILDING A WORLD
A STORY OF AN UNCOMMON FAMILY
Charles W. Bird
Charles W. Bird
This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales is entirely coincidental. This story is protected by copyright and may not be reproduced by any means without the express, written permission of the author.
From Chapter 12: When you, Lord Keeper, Messenger of the Great Spirit, arrived, the Stone shone the Light of Forgiveness upon us, our centuries of sorrow fell from our shoulders and we again knew the Great Spirit's Companionship." He paused for a few moments and then began, "In the name of my People, I pledge our unending friendship with the folk of the Wolf, never again will we abandon you nor cause your young wolves hurt or fear. We are thy companions on this world for so long as the sun shines and the moon crosses the night sky. Should again, some of our youths ask to be made wolf, we shall not shun thee and abandon the trust between us, we shall bring them to you that they might be made wolf." The Eye of Scotland was shining like a great beacon on John's chest, the light was pure and clean and lit up even the dark corners of the room. Little Jeremiah Long Branch was seen whispering in his Papa's ear and his Papa nodded his head in a "yes", the child came up to Jeremiah and said, "Please Mr. King, may I be made a Wuff like yourself?"
AN AMERICAN INDIAN WUFF
Jeremiah scanned the child's mind and saw the raw determination behind the request, it was a force so strong, he dared not say anything except, "YES!" Jeremiah Long Branch stood triumphant before the Wolf King and bowed low, "My Lord King, COMMAND ME!"
The youngster had no fear of the Wolf Folk.
The Old Chief, Chief Wild Ox came and knelt beside the boy, "King Jeremiah, I knew thee when you were a boy, growing into your adulthood and becoming a wolf. You marked me then, by calling me to thee when you and your wolf companion met me in the deep forest. I have followed thee throughout your climb to sit on the Throne of the Wolves, I have met thee in Conclave and I have watched thee in war, I ask thee to grant my Great Grandson that which he asks. It is time that our two folk become one soul. Our Humans may remain Cherokee, but our hearts shall be WOLF! I ask that you grant an old man his most precious desire, that I may watch this child become Wolf Folk!"
Jeremiah stood and lifted the old man to his feet, "Chief Wild Ox of the Cherokee People, I invite thee to return with us to Wolf House, where you may take your ease and know thee art welcome to end thy days as our welcome guest. Thee shalt see this child become one of us, a thing none but Wolf Folk have ever witnessed before. Be Welcome Chief Wild Ox and know that thou art our Honored Guest. Thee, yourself, are not so aged that thy might join thy Great Grandson in his ascension to Wolfdom!"
A chair was brought for the old man to sit and the program continued for another hour. Little Jeremiah Long Branch was sitting contentedly on his Great Grandfather's lap.
Chief Wild Ox's mind was a swirl of jumbled thoughts and he finally decided to ask the advice of the Great Spirit.
As he sat there, he prayed deeply, "Oh Great Spirit, advise me, do I join my beloved Great Grandson or do I merely watch with my failing eyesight as he becomes one of the Wolf Folk. Send me a sign, Oh Great Spirit that I might know I have thy permission to do this thing."
The old man dozed off in the overheated room, while King Jeremiah finished up his visit with his adopted people.
While the elderly Chief slept, the Eye of Scotland began to glow on John's chest, soon, the entire room was lit up once more, in the power of the Eye. As everyone watched, a bright beam gathered and shot out from the stone, lighting up Chief Wild Ox as he dozed in his chair.
The child, Jeremiah Long Branch was sitting on his Great Grandfather's lap, the bright light startled the child and then a huge smile came over his face, the boy knew a secret and would be told by The Eye, when it was time to tell his Great Grandpapa.
With the festivities at an end, Jeremiah's Warriors gently carried a sleeping Chief Wild Ox out to the SUV and laid him in the space behind the last seat. They covered him with a soft, warm blanket and folded another blanket for his pillow.
The old man never woke up, the Wolf Warrior, Carter Just, noted that the old man looked more vital and vigorous than he did in the Youth Lodge. He mentioned it to King Jeremiah and Jeremiah just smiled and thanked the Warrior.
Little Jeremiah Long Branch sat on his namesake's lap all the way back to Cashiers. When they arrived, the King himself carried the boy into Wolf House and laid him on a cot the Warriors had set up in the King's own bedroom.
Jeremiah looked down at the youth, sleeping soundly, without a care in the world. He envied Little Jeremiah his innocence and sent a plea to The Lord of Wolves, Above Us All that the child be allowed to retain his innocence for as long as possible.
The next day was a busy schedule for Jeremiah and his staff, he had a meeting with the American President and Vice President, there was a delegation from a small Wolf Pack in Uruguay, and his adopted son in the Far North of Canada had sent him a large chest, under guard by twelve Wolf Warriors.
The American President and Vice President would be arriving momentarily, they all, the Vice President, Edgar Meese, the father of Prince James Meese Tate and Jeremiah, were friends of long standing.
The President, he did not know as well as the other two, but he seemed to be governing well and most of the problems within the United States had been quelled.
James escorted his Father and the American President into Jeremiah's office and closed the door. He stood guard inside the room at Parade Rest throughout the meeting.
The President began the meeting by saying, "Sir, at the end of my term, I must withdraw from running for a second term, my physician tells me that I have about six months left, I have cancer and it has spread throughout my body. My fervent wish is for Edgar, here, to run for my office and he has agreed to do so. Our choice for his running mate, however, is much more difficult. Would it be possible for your Son, Lord Tosco, to serve as Vice President of the United States?"
Jeremiah reminded them that Tosco was not a born American Citizen.
The President slapped his own head and said, "I had forgotten that."
Jeremiah was staring at Prince James and James was frantically waving his hands in a gesture that meant, not only no, but HELL NO!
Jeremiah smiled and said, "I have just the individual you need and he is also my Adopted Son, James Edgar Meese Tate is your man for this job!"
James sat in a chair, holding his head in his hands, thinking, "Why me, Lord of Wolves Above Us All, why me?"
Both the President and the Vice President thought it over and both said nearly the same thing, "Hell, why not!"
The news got out rapidly, it was a first for the country that a Father and Son team were running for the two highest offices in the nation. The New York Times dug up the fact that James Meese Tate was also Lord Prince James, Commander of all the Wolf Warriors in the world!
Someone had a picture of him in full regalia taken as he stood at the accommodation ladder of the Red Wolf when King Jeremiah visited Scotland.
The newspaper ran the front page in full color, James stood half a page height on the front page of the largest newspapers in the country!
The newspaper reminded its readers that the Wolf Folk had been on the American Continent as long as the American Indians had been here, nobody could accuse James Edgar Meese Tate of not being a native born American Citizen!
James Meese Tate was a Warrior in all he did, running for political office was no different, he put his all into the race. His Wolf stamina sustained him in a brutal campaign, all those who wanted the wolves gone, got behind the opposition candidates and funneled campaign funds to them, illegal or not!
James and his Father, Edgar campaigned all over the country, Jeremiah loaned them the Golden Wolf, he charged them a hundred dollars a mile, to prevent anyone from saying he had given it to them free of charge.
Of course, The Wolf PAC, paid the hundred dollar a mile fee to Jeremiah's Treasury. It was merely a transfer of funds from one account to the other.
Lord Prince Jonal took over the Captaincy of All Wolf Warriors and it was he, who discovered Little Jeremiah Long Branch beaten nearly unto death in the field behind the school.
The perpetrators were never discovered, although many felt it was connected to the four dead humans who were discovered in a burned out automobile near Charlotte. There was little time, the child was near death and the doctors knew they could not save the child's life!
King Jeremiah was called and he made an instantaneous decision, he would change the boy that day. Jeremiah walked into Chief Wild Ox's room and told him what had taken place and what he proposed to do about it.
Jeremiah then looked straight at the old man and said, "It is time, also for thee, old friend, I would change thee at the same time as the child and thee make thy emergence together with thy Great Grand Child!"
The old chief was shaking like a leaf, but he nodded to Jeremiah and followed him out of the room.
As they headed down the hall to the infirmary, the Wolf Folk began gathering, the tolling of the Great Bell had called to them.
They lined the hall in which the two were walking. None said a single word, it was totally silent, they only bowed their heads as the two passed by.
Prince Lewis and Prince John stood at the door to the Infirmary, The Eye of Scotland was glowing brightly upon John's Chest and he held the Sword of Truth high, sparks were flashing from its tip.
Something told Chief Wild Ox to stop and stand before the Sword of Truth, John lowered it and touched the Chief on each shoulder. The great Bell in the Tower again began to toll and Chief Wild Ox would later swear that he felt years younger when John touched him with the Sword.
Jeremiah led the Chief into the treatment room, where Little Jeremiah Long Branch lay, near death.
Tears were flowing down the Chief's face, he picked up the child and knelt before King Jeremiah, "Lord King of Wolves, I beg thee to save my Great Grandson, he deserves not this awful death."
Jeremiah replied, "Chief Wild Ox, my dear friend and companion of my youth I will save thee AND the child, come, we shall begin!"
The Eye of Scotland blasted out a ray of pure red light, so intense, all those nearby were temporarily blinded.
Jeremiah led the old Chief, still carrying his Great Grandson in his arms, to a special room at the back of the Infirmary, a door that once locked, could only be opened from the inside.
Jeremiah led the two inside the room and closed the door, it locked automatically and John and Lewis would stand guard outside the door until the King, the boy and the old man came back out of the room.
The entire time, the full seven days, the two young Warriors stood before the door, taking only water, no food at all.
At the end of the allotted time, the Eye of Scotland began glowing bright green and the Sword of Truth began to vibrate until it let out a tone that would last until the door was opened from the inside by the King.
On the morning of the eighth day, the door began to crack open, the King stood there, looking wane and tired. The Great Bell was tolling a slow count and could not be stopped.
Two Indians also stood there, one a youth and the other a young adult.
As they exited the chamber, the bell began a frantic tolling. The Eye blasted out a green beam of light and the Sword of Truth finally fell silent, its vibrations had ceased.
Everyone looked at Chief Wild Ox, but the man they had known was gone and wearing his clothing, despite their tight fit, stood a young adult Indian man full of youth and vitality. Holding his hand tightly was an Indian Teen. The Teen had a birthmark on his forehead, when folk looked closely, it clearly was the outline of The Sword of Truth!
Jeremiah sighed and said, "Never again shall I transform two at the same time!" He went straight to his quarters and slept for the next two days!
The Tower Bell fell silent, then resumed its slow tolling for the next twenty-four hours before quiet was resumed.
The Indian Youth stepped forward and said loudly, "I am Prince of Wolves Jeremiah Long Branch Tate, Squire to the Folk of the Cherokee. Through Me shall our folk be regenerated, through Me shall issue Cherokee Wolf Warriors! I come, not to rule, but rather to LEAD as we take our place beside our Wolf Brothers, together, we shall protect this land and, indeed, all the lands of this world. We shall help all the folk grow and turn their lands into a place where all of us may live in peace and harmony. None shall hurt our children nor shall they die before their time. Those that would harm even a single hair on a child's head shall die a quick and cruel death. THIS I SWEAR BY THE GREAT SPIRIT AND BY THE LORD OF WOLVES, ABOVE US ALL!"
He continued, "NOW, GREET THE LORD OF THE CHEROKEE WOLF FOLK, SHAMAN WILD OX!"
The young adult Indian was obviously the former Chief Wild Ox, he stepped to the front and said, "I, SHAMAN WILD OX, SPIRITIAL LEADER OF THE CHEROKEE FOLK, SWEAR BY THE GREAT SPIRIT AND BY THE LORD OF WOLVES, ABOVE US ALL, THAT I SHALL ABIDE BY THE COMMANDS GIVEN ME AND WILL LEAD OUR FOLK IN FULFILLING THEIR DESTINY. TOGETHER WITH OUR BROTHER WOLVES, WE SHALL ALLOW NO HURT TO COME TO OUR PEOPLE, OUR CHILDREN AND ALL THOSE WITH WHOM WE CLAIM BROTHERHOOD. THIS I HAVE SAID, SO IT SHALL BE!"
A DREAM FULFILLED
The Cherokee People had long dreamed that their people would grow and become totally self-sufficient. Despite all that happened in the last years, they remained dependent upon handouts from the Government.
When the members of the Youth Lodge saw Chief Wild Ox and the youngster, Jeremiah Long Branch as Wolf Folk, there was a stampede of young Cherokee Warriors and their sisters to Wolf House, all asking to be made wolf!
Before the river of requestors had slowed to a trickle, there were over two hundred new Cherokee Wolf Warriors and their mates!
Chief Wild Ox saw to it they were dressed as Wolf Warriors, instead of kilts, they wore tanned deer skin breeches and leggings and were armed with twelve foot spears as well as modern firearms. Instead of bagpipes, there were eight young warriors carrying drums. They all wore a single feather in their headband that looked like a small Sword of Truth.
As they practiced out on the football field, young Cherokee lads watched, their mouths drooling in envy. Chief Wild Ox had decreed that they must be twelve years old before they could join the Cherokee Wolf Warriors! More than a few Cherokee boys showed up at the Infirmary as the Clock Bell stroked midnight on the day they turned twelve!
Jeremiah joined the Chief in watching the Cherokee Wolf Warriors march and perform their maneuvers on the Football Field.
The Chief/Shaman turned to Jeremiah and said, "Lord King of Wolves, it is fitting that thy personal guards be of my folk, the Cherokee Wolf Warriors, as thee hath given us life, so we shall protect yours."
He gave out a sharp whistle and a huge Warrior, followed by twelve additional Warriors came trotting over and saluted their Chief and their King by pounding their right fist against their left breast.
The huge Warrior, Warrior Leader George Wild Water said, "My Lord King of Wolves, COMMAND ME!"
Jeremiah looked up at the huge man and then at his Warriors, they all towered over six feet, more, closer to seven feet!
Jeremiah found himself surrounded by Cherokee Wolf Folk, armed with traditional weapons, as well as modern firearms. He looked closely at their long spears, they were works of art, the shafts had been carved from hickory and bore the family talisman of the individual Warrior, along with a crowned wolf's head. Bands of beaten silver held the polished steel blade on the tip. As Jeremiah looked at his new bodyguard, he saw the Warrior's Wolves shimmering just below the surface, as if eager to come forth to protect their King!
Now that things had slowed somewhat (he hoped), Jeremiah was eager to delve into the box that had been sent to him from Alaska. When he opened it, he found it filled with old documents, looking closer, he had to catch the side of the trunk his to keep from falling, so great was his shock!
The chest of documents that had been sent to Jeremiah by his adopted sons, Paul and Joseph, was opened and examined. Many of the ancient documents were written on vellum and had been carried by the refugees on the Great Migration. The documents were more than ten thousand years old and they documented every family line of the Wolf Folk.
Paul and Joseph, Alpha Wolves of the Combined Yukon Clan had been rescued as youths by then Prince Alpha Jeremiah. He had adopted them both as his own sons and raised them to adulthood, while building up their folk on his own lands near Cashiers.
When the two had reached their majority, he led them in claiming their Clans as the Lords Alpha Wolves and returned them to the northlands of their birth. He assisted them in reclaiming their birthright and assisted them in establishing their folk on lands where they could live in peace and nurture their families.
They had told him of finding a stash of documents and that they were sending them to him, but he had no idea that there were so many and that they were so important to their folk.
Every family in Wolfdom was documented, where they had originated and how many had survived the centuries long trek to the New World!
Jeremiah set his librarians to cataloguing the documents and making copies that could be given to every Clan.
There were records of those Clans who had failed to muster and were left behind. He checked their names against the list he had made of those he had rescued coming through Asia and into China, he had found them all.
There were no clans left behind any longer! The Clan Dainispidal had been the last of the Lost Clans to return to the Fold of Wolfdom!
A CALL FOR HELP
Jeremiah was dressing for supper when he felt a tug to his mind, he gathered his strength and sent back, "This is Jeremiah, King of the Wolf Folk, who are you and what is your need?"
A mind, taxed to its extreme with the distance and shaded with fear replied, "Lord King, it is I, Roberto, partner of Antonio of Family Met. My love, Antonio, has been severely wounded and I fear for his life, My Lord." (*_see The Adventures of Jeremiah Tate, Chapter 14_)
Anger drove Jeremiah's mind to strengths he had not before known, "WHO HAS DONE THIS THING TO MY ADOPTED SON?"
Roberto sent in return, "Lord Jeremiah, when you assisted us, we promised to reclaim that which had been stolen from us by the Peronistas, we came to Buenos Arias to evict those holding our properties. The government sent soldiers to drive us off, My Roberto has been shot!"
Jeremiah sent, "How badly is he hurt, is he in a hospital?"
Roberto replied, with more strength as he became used to sending such a long distance, "My Lord King, my Antonio is here in a small home we own, I fear to take him to a government hospital, the Presidente has sworn to jail us if she can find us!"
Jeremiah asked, "Can you hold on for two or three days?"
Roberto sent, "Hopefully, yes, My Lord. Antonio's wounds are beginning to fester, so, if you can help us, please hurry!"
Jerehiah sent, "OK, we will be there in two days or less, hang on, my son and take care of your Antonio!"
Jeremiah sent a blast for Jonal to come quick!
King's Squire Jeremiah Long Branch sent out a blast so powerful that he was heard as far away as Washington! James heard him and demanded to know the problem. As soon as he heard about Antonio, he set wheels in motion to accredit King Jeremiah as a Diplomat of the United States!
The Cherokee of The King's Own Warriors came running, and arrayed themselves in front of Jeremiah's doorway. Each Warrior had his Spear and their conventional weapons were hung about the uniforms. They were walking arsenals!
John Mustered the King's Forces and selected one thousand KING'S OWN WARRIORS to accompany them to Argentina.
Lewis was on the phone, rounding up their aircraft and getting sufficient supplies on board, Jeremiah had recently appointed him King's Armorer in addition to his duties as the WARRIOR KEEPER COMMANDER.
James' Squire, Daniel of Dainispidal, came rushing up, all out of breath as he had run all the way from the High School.
He bowed and said, "Warrior Knight of the Keepers, I am ready to serve you, I have your Dress Uniform and the Staff of the Keepers is mine to carry. I shall assist thee in donning thy garb of Ceremony and know you that Prince Lewis has assembled thy Warriors Keeper."
They assembled in front of Wolf House, Jeremiah was behind a screen of Cherokee Warriors and Jeremiah Long Branch was out in front, holding the Royal Staff, a polished silver pole topped with a golden wolf's head wearing a silver crown. His small companion, Doris Bright Water carried the Royal Pennant. It was almost more than she could handle, but Jeremiah Long Branch dared not even suggest she get another to carry it for her! Hell's Own Fury would not match the young Girl Wolf's temper!
In front of them was the entire company of Cherokee Wolf Warriors, led by Shaman Wild Ox.
Next were one thousand King's Warriors dressed in the Tate Tartan (this was a Family affair) and wearing blue caps with bright red ribbons. They all carried short swords and sufficient conventional weapons that each one of them could have started AND finished their own war!
Out in front, were the Warriors Keeper, Led by Royal Prince Keeper Lewis.
Leading the entire party were the Knight's Keeper and Knight Warrior Keeper, Prince John, holding the Great Sword of Truth aloft and the Eye of Scotland shining an angry red.
Leading the entire parade was Squire Daniel of Dainispidal, carrying a long silver staff, topped with a golden globe. The young Squire called out with a commanding voice that could hardly fit his small body, "PIPERS, SOUND TO BATTLE, FORWARD, QUICK STEP, MARCH. WE GO TO OUR BUSES TO TAKE US TO THE AIRPLANES!"
Tosco came running up, all out of breath and said to his Father, "My Lord King, the planes have been fueled and supplies are on board. I AM coming with you, Father, they will have to go through me to ever come near to thee. This is a Family matter!"
Jeremiah chuckled, "Son, you will have to fight all those in front of us, if you wish to be the first to strike a blow!"
Tosco replied, "Lord of Wolves, Above Us All, that woman President in Argentina has bit off more than she can chew! She cannot know what she has called down upon herself!"
Jeremiah was grim, he neither liked nor wanted war with Argentina or anyone else and he hoped to be able to negotiate a solution to their problem.
Will the authorities in Argentina accept negotiations? Should the young Lord Alpha Antonio die, there will be no holding back Wolf Warrior Antonio, nor would Jeremiah want to.