There Comes a Reckoning

Pox Walker & Meeting with Mr Bear Claw

Eliza's Journal Excerpt

The group fractures as certain members attend to business they have. I offer to stay with Mr. Cerney, but he politely declines, parting ways agreeing to meet again in half an hour. I go to the bank and relieve myself of the majority of my purse. I take a breath leaving the bank, knowing my funds are secure. This town is a bit more rough and tumble then I had expected. I have managed to become engrossed in my pocket bible and am just slightly startled when Mr. Cerney clears his throat to gain my attention. Joseph is with him. He suggests we gather the rest of the group ahead of the meeting. We set about our way and hear a number of gunshots. The two gentlemen take off at their top speed. I make haste, but at a more gentile pace. Picking through the crowd to avoid being knocked down whilst also keeping an eye to the origin of the kerfuffle.

It seems the issue is an Indian fellow attacking citizens. After a bit it smacks me that he is quite emaciated and covered in boils. So very… deceased looking. I wrack my brain for a reason for this. The ichor smells of ammonia and puss. Glancing around a bit I notice one of the victims with an arrow in him has some unusual afflictions for such a wound. His eyes are puffy and he just seems bloated in general. I go examine the shaft of the arrow and do not notice a thing. I grab the hem of my skirts incase the ichor dries clear and pull the arrow from the corpse. Sure enough I notice a bit of the goo on the arrow head. Someone mentions there are 6 riders on the way and are indians. I take a quick peek around for a spot of concealment and find the tents are the my best bet. I take my leave, failing to notify my compatriots as time is quite the factor.

The group arrives and speaks among themselves. I hear a voice I am pretty sure is Cyrus’ answer in their language. I don’t speak the language and fear even if I could I wouldn’t hear the whole exchange. I eventually tire of hiding, they don’t seem to be searching for a thing apart from the boil inflicted indians. They have gathered the bodies and Mr. Cerney is relieving the contents of a lamp onto the bodies and kindling. An Indian strikes a flint a few times and the pyre goes up. It grows as expected for a moment then flares. I start to become a bit worried but just as I think to flee it seems to extinguish of its own accord. This appears to be clearing so I head to the Office of Indian Affairs. I am a wee bit late and make apologies, letting them know Mr. Cerney will be arriving momentarily. The lackey directs me to some seating and I take a seat, reading my pocket bible again.

Our meeting begins and Mr Cerney takes the lead. It is going poorly. I do not know what Mr Cerney is all about. He is discussing growing trees, buying praire land… I am befuddled. Mr Bear Claw looks to me, I fear I failed his test as I am quite flummoxed. Mr Bear Claw stands and tells us we have “Wasted his time”. My mouth gapes open and closed like a guppy. I am so very confused. Mr Cerney says he would like to compensate him for his time. He lays $200 on the table. Mr Bear Claw says he has 5 minutes. Mr Cerney continues to talk mostly in riddles. Mr Bear Claw is quite perturbed at this point. He turns to me and says he will continue to talk with me, if only Mr Cerney leaves as he has grown tired of being insulted. Still a bit confused by the situation I tell him I have no issue with this. Mr Cerney lays another $100 on the table on his way out.
I forget the exact details of the exchange now as I was heady with the rush of negotiations. However Mr Bear Claw tells me he was educated back east. I play on this. Appealing to his ego, a weakness prevalent in men of all shades. This helps convey my message that it benefits Deadwood with commerce and consolidating power for itself. Mr Bear Claw offers to talk to the council about permissions and fees that would be associated with the endeavor. I thank him kindly and tell him I am at his disposal if I can be of assistance. Mr Cerney is waiting outside and I inform him about what happened after his exit. We leave the building and the rest of the group is waiting as well as Ms Frost. Cyrus is making inquiries about a “Calamity Jane”. It seems she is the town drunk. This seems quite the accomplishment in a town such as this.


I always enjoy reading Eliza’s perspective. You do such a good job of creating her voice.


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