Winter 1814 – Riding on a Wind of Screams

Billy’s face remained pale. “Captain Fury sails with the British,” he said. “The Mourning Dove trails their fleet. They may not know it but it, but he is there.”

Father refilled Billy’s beer. “We beat him once. We can beat him again.”

Billy looked at his feet. “We didn’t beat him, Red. We survived him. I’m an old man now. I’ve no wish to tempt fate twice.”

Spring 1814 – Inviting Devils to Dance

In the firelight Sissy had a stature never evidenced during the day. Under the sun, she was a little creature, of polite manners and raised carriage, a prim bird not to be mocked. This night, under this moon, Sissy Le Bon filled space like a tiger and moved like flame. 

“Come Rose,” she laughed, “put down the weight of your hammer! Join the circle!”

Spring 1812 – Mrs. Kindersley Has Guests for Tea


Mrs. Kindersley carefully refilled each cup upon the table. She smiled at me. “Miss Rose? Are you not tired of this place? Are you not weary of the heat and the wet and the smell? Would you not like to see better parts of this world?”

I politely sipped my tea. “I hope to visit more of the world, Ma’am, than I have as yet. I thank you for your offer but I am not ready to leave home just yet. And I am not willing to leave without my family and companions.” 

Mrs. Kindersley’s face hardened. “That is sad,” she hissed. 

Summer 1810 – A Bloody Cotillion


It was not difficult to determine from the creature had come. Her footprints were larger than Aunt Annie’s and she left a clearer trail of mayhem than even a very drunk Annie would have managed. Smashed windows, staved in sidewalks, overturned wagons, even a dead horse, its head twisted nearly off, marked the path. It ended at the house of the late Jacques Bertrand. 

Summer 1810 – Bull Tanner Makes a Mistake


“My father did not lay your brother down,” I said, “I gave him what he deserved.”

The river bully sneered. “Is Red such a coward he hides behind little girls?”

I picked up my hammer. “Are you so deaf you can’t understand what I tell you?”