Wednesday, April 18, 2012

T. E. Story #13

Today I spent good time with the young Lt., and I believe him to be
a good man.  His heart is in the right place, and he is completely
loyal to you Capt.  He is very tired however, he seemed to be covering
every detail that was his responsibility.  It was indeed interesting
to watch him do his paymaster duties.  At first he glanced out of the
corner of his eye to see if I was overly interested in the money.  He
was also very careful to bring only the money that he needed.  After this
was taken care of, I decided to take a walk around, and watch the men
dismantle the raft.  Several complained that it was too well built, and
hard to get apart.  Most however put their heart into it, and it is
all in appropriate stacks.  The Hemlock logs for the pilings and other
projects in the water applications are tied up out of sight in the
backwater.  My Dad always use Hemlock for this, and it lasted for
years.  Cookie put together a nice meal for supper, and I kept the
conversation going until almost dark.  After a late night, last night,
they drifted off to their sacks at dusk.  I suggested to the Lt. that
he might wish to double the night watch for a few nights.  He took my
suggestion, with a look of uncertainty but took care of it

 While he was doing this I asked the Crew Boss if he was up to
finishing our conversation of last night.   He smiled, and suggested
that we might include the Lt. in it.  I was pleased with this as I
would only have to chew my cabbage once.  We picked a spot overlooking
the river, and well out of earshot of the night watch, and camp.  I
had the Crew Boss review our conversation of last night, and than
asked the Lt to do the same. “ Put your cards on the table,” I said, “and
put all of them down clear.”  He had about the same concerns, however he was quite
upset that he felt that I was usurping his authority.  It was easy to
see that this really was a burr in his saddle.  I had a tough time to
keep a strait face, and peering over at the Crew Boss didn't help as
he had a grin a mile wide on his face.  At the same time the clouds
parted a bit, and I saw a small boat that appeared to be turning in
our direction, and the clouds closed in again.  I quietly instructed
them both to go fetch their weapons, and return to this spot.  I would
be right back.  Hurrying back I picked up my Henry, and cartridge
belt, and went to the night watch, and alerted them to be alert, and
absolutely quiet.  Getting back to the Crew Boss, and the Lt. I gave
them instructions as to what was taking place, and where to position
themselves.  If the chaps came ashore we would have them in a
crossfire if things did not go well.  I certainly hoped that my chaps
would do as I told them to do.  The Lt. was jumpy, and scared.  The
wind picked up, and the clouds opened up again.  There were two men in
the boat, and one had just stepped ashore.  He said something than
pushed the boat out, and the other man rowed away.  Getting his bearings
this tough looking grizzled hulk of a man slumped down, and started
walking up the trail towards me.

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