The shadowy road stretched out for what seemed to be a thousand miles. Each side of the road draped with dark ancient trees with long thick limbs that touched the edge of cement. Standing erectly as if they were solders standing at attention. The night fell over the countryside like a heavy blanket. Shawn stood in front of his car looking at the long road ahead and then back at the steam pouring out from the hood. Noises from the fields were creeping into his ears. The full moon lit only the long stretch of highway that lay in front of him.
The night before had been a long one. Shawn Smith had attended a sales conference that yielded great possibilities for his future. The twelve-hour days and the endless client meetings were eating away at everything in his life, but the feeling of infinite ambition in achieving the ultimate dream kept him always wanting more. He had rented a sport car thinking he could zip back to his office with very little delay. Now this quick little car was crippled and threatening a big appointment already set up for the next morning. His eyes searched the highway for headlights, there weren’t any.
There was only one thing he could do, start walking.
At first his stride seemed effortless. He would walk about ten steps and turn and look back at his car. The headlights were a beacon in the dark giving him a sense of security as a mariner feels when he scopes a lighthouse on a distant shore, but the beacon was getting further behind him. The noises from the fields were getting louder so he started to whistle in hopes of drowning them out, they only got louder……..
One of these noises, as the hair on the back of his neck stood straight up, bounced from his ear drum as a forlorn sound. Where had he heard this noise? He kept asking himself as he continued to look down at the highway wishing someone would be traveling this deserted god forgotten highway to save him from what seemed to be the longest loneliness night of his life.
The noise got louder and seemed to be getting closer to him. His steps got quicker. He could feel the burn in his thigh muscles. All of this had to be in his head, he hoped. His life and what he had wanted to accomplish kept rushing through his mind. His wife was threatening to leave him because of this endless quest to succeed. He hadn’t seen his mother in more than a year. This life that he had chosen was gaining on him. Thoughts of being a better person, a better son and a better husband were flowing through his mind.
He decided to whistle louder to drown out the noise, but the noise would grew louder as his whistling got louder. As the noise got closer his stride got faster until he was in a dead run. His heart was racing and his breath getting harder and harder to pull out of his lungs. The noise had reached the tree line and was getting even closer.
He turned for one last look at the safe harbor of his headlights, they were gone, then he felt a sharp stabbing pain in his head, stumbling and falling to the highway with a thump, he looked up to see a large dark figure towering over him, then blackness.
When he awoke his head felt like it had been split open. His eyes were crusted over with sand and dried blood. He felt bugs crawling on him. The sun felt like it was cooking him alive. He started brushing off the bugs looking around at the surroundings and noticed he hadn’t moved an inch. Someone had placed a makeshift pillow under his head. Trying to figure out what had happened and get to a standing position wasn't going to be easy. As he sat up his head pounding he noticed several huge footprints around him. The footprints were twice the size of his own. Trying to make sense of what happened he noticed dried blood all over the make shift pillow so he knew someone or something had hit him on the head and then put his head on a pillow he mumbled "What the hell?"
He stood up trying to gain his composure and fell back down. He glanced back towards where he had left his car, it was still there. He couldn’t believe what was happening to him. The sound of a car coming towards him gave way to feelings of relief. He started walking towards the approaching car and waved his hands “Please stop, I need help!” and he fell to his knees. The car pulled off to the shoulder and his life seemed to start over.
The driver got out and met him half way. Shawn noticed the driver wearing a hat with an Indian headband and had long gray hair. He looked like he had just walked off the Indian reservation. Shawn felt instant relief and remembered praying for someone to come by.
After discussing the incidents of the night before the driver consented to take him to the nearest town. While driving the two men were quiet. Then the man started to explain how there had been several bodies found on this same stretch of road and all of them had been dismembered. The authorities have not found the murderer and had no leads on who had done these unspeakable acts, but there had been evidence found at the sites that led police to think it was either a cult or some kind of an animal. The Indian went on to say that he’d lived in the area all his life and knew what had killed the people.
He asked Shawn his name and Shawn told him his name Shawn Smith but he went on to say "Smith isn't my actual last name, my father changed it to Smith when trying to find work, my actual last name is Sakee" The Indian replied “Yes, I thought you were part Indian. You need to know that you are the only person to survive this murderer and I’m sure it’s because you are part Indian. Did you know your last name is from the Sakoapa Indian tribe?” Shawn said he knew his father's family is Indian but he wasn't sure which type. Shawn went on to say "My mother left my father when I was three years old because my father couldn't find work and because he was crazy or at least that's what she always said. She got tired of him talking about evil spirits. I never saw him again."
The Indian said "My name is Running Bear" and he told Shawn about a legend in the hills. Shawn laid his head back on the seat thinking how crazy this guy was and how he was just like his father. Running Bear explained how he didn’t know what was killing all the people, but he did know it was a Nihasa a type of demon and this demon would kill again. “Nihasa is Satan and all he wants is to kill and torture.” Said Running Bear.
Running Bear also told Shawn about a great Indian known to the towns people as “Fire Eyes” and how Shawn had been saved because of Indian blood. He went on to tell him the story of “Fire Eyes” and that he lived in the caves and was supposed to be over a hundred years old with the body of an Indian warrior. He spoke of how this legend only came out during a full moon and that he had been a great chief at one time and his name was Black Crow.
He talked about the legend of Fire Eyes until they got to an old run down auto garage.
Shawn didn’t believe in legends, but he knew something had happened in the dark and some kind of way he had been given a second chance to live. He didn't tell Running Bear how just before being hit on the head he heard a man's voice yelling NIHASA over and over again and struggling noises. He could tell there was more than one thing and one of them wasn’t human. One of the things flew away and the other very large thing stood over him until Shawn passed out.
When Shawn got out of the car the driver said one last thing “Never forget what Fire Eyes did for you, because he will never forget you.” Shawn told the driver to please wait until he could find out if the people inside could help, but when he returned to thank him, the driver was gone.
When Shawn got back to his life in the big city, he was cleaning out his attic looking for the large box that his father's mother had left him before her death. When he opened the box and removed the Indian blanket in which was wrapped around a large framed photo. The photo was of an Indian chief in full dress. She had told him it was her grandfather. Shawn had never looked in the box. He had shoved it in the attic and forgot it. Being so busy he hadn’t taken the time to see what was in the box.
Under the photo there was a plaque that read:
“We will always be watching over you.” Chief Black Crow 1801
Sometimes it’s best not to ask why or what, but to remember there is only one life that you are given. Be sure to make the best of the life you are given while you can. P.C B
"The Indian survived our open
intention of wiping them out.
And since the tide turned they
have even weathered our good
intentions toward them, which
can be more deadly."
~ John Steinbeck......American and Americans ~
Soon there will come from the rising sun a different kind of man from any you have ever yet seen-Spokan Prophecy