The knock came at the door around 3:00 am. It was the Tosguna. This Tosguna was a young woman who had been in the police force for only a couple years.

She was somewhat flustered from being on the radio the whole evening and she was as polite as she could be when he let her in.

“Sinagha” she addressed him. (Even though he was her uncle she always addressed him as her brother.)

“The RCMP asked for our help finding a lost teenager. He is from the city and they said he has some emotional problems. My supervisor asked me to come out here and ask you for help tracking her down in the valley.”

“Alright… I’ll come to the station as soon as I get ready.”

He thought of the time when he was hunting and sat and waited overlooking an opening. All was quiet except for his breathing. A bobcat ambled along seemingly oblivious to seeing him sitting there. Eyes searching all over as he carefully put one foot down and then the other and have his back feet replace where the first footsteps had been. His whiskers sensing the air for anything out of the ordinary. He was in hunter mode and he had not eaten in a few days. Even a small mouse would be a good light snack. He moved slowly across the opening only to pick up a scent to the left and just as quietly disappeared into the bush, but not before stopping and looking back and showing what seemed like a smirk.

“I knew you were there all along…”

The RCMP and City Police were at the station with the Tosguna and there was movement all along as they all obeyed their chains of command and talked into radios that broke the morning air.

It was still dark and there was a desperation in the air. The young Tosguna woman nodded her head as the male RCMP in command tried to boss her and the others around, he knew better than these locals is what he threw out into the air.

“Where is this “Indian tracker’ you were talking about? Maybe he is too lazy to get out of bed or hung over. If we “Still” had authority out here I would have had proven trackers and dogs out here and we wouldn’t be standing around while that young girl is out there.”

“Well how many days have you been looking for her before you even asked for permission to come out here?” the Young Tosguna woman answered. “4,… 5 days? We even offered to help but you just said you are handling it. So who is the lazy one here?”

The RCMP was about to raise his voice when she called out beyond him.

“Sinaugha! Come over and have a coffee”

The RCMP turned around quickly and saw Sinagha standing there just outside the light of the office. His face turned red as he wondered if his words were heard by him. All the police stopped their chatter and for a brief minute the radios went quiet. They looked at a middle aged man who wore an old tattered canvas coat pulled up close to his neck and woolen pants. His moccasins made his walk even more quieter as he brushed past the RCMP leader to a warm cup of coffee. His hair was starting to get grey on the side under his hat and his backpack was well used. Held together with leather where there used to be buttons and buckles. His knife and belt wrapped around his jacket and his 30/30 rifle held in his free hand.

Normally the sight of a man carrying a gun would have everyone jumping around and orders to drop his gun and “Raise your hands!” would have been yelled out. However this time all the police just watched as this unassuming man stood and joked with the other Tosguna in their language. The Tosguna would steal glances at the other police and chuckle as Sinagha spoke. The Tosguna felt at ease and much more confident with him around because he commanded a solemn respect and the other police noticed that.


Shall we carry continue with the plans the Boss RCMP sheepishly interrupted. The Tosguna and Sinagha casually turned towards him and he smiled and said sure.

The noise resumed once again but this time there was a different attitude and it was more about the business of setting up search patterns and grids. They all gathered around a table and worked over maps that laid around. The boss RCMP would give his instruction and then glance at Sinagha as if he was asking permission to continue. Drinking his coffee he seemed disinterested in what was being said and this made the other police even more cautious about what they were doing. He was asked what he thought about things so far.

“This young girl has been touched by the spirits hasn’t she?”

“What do you mean?” replied the city police.

“She has some mental challenges ennit?” he asked.

Again they paused…

“Yes she does,… how do you know that?”

“The winter birds said so yesterday when they flew around.”

The other Tosguna just nodded in agreement while the other police looked at each other.

He must have heard it on the radio or something they murmured to themselves. Even it was never released to the public at the request of the parents…

Both parents were there trying to be calm but all the time worried about their daughter. Beside them was their two other children. A brother and sister. Older than her. Both were in university or business by the way they were dressed. They looked haggard from lack of sleep and some of their own friends were around but were sitting in their cars trying to stay warm.

“She was a good girl…” they kept saying.

“Her friends made her do crazy things,” the sister said. A look of anger came across her face as she thought about who her sisters friends were.

The mother said that her friends just kept encouraging her to try drugs when she was only 11 years old. She didn’t want to lose her friends so she did as they made her and she just got use to that life.

“She would go downtown and run away time after time whenever the police found her and tried to bring her home. She liked that craziness,” her mom told Sinagha.

“One day she took some really bad drugs we were told and she almost died.”

When she got released she was not really the same. She ran away for a few weeks with a man who promised her nice things. After some time she came back but then another man did the same thing and she just stayed away.

“I miss my baby so much!!!!”… the father finally broke down and cried.

“Why didn’t she just try harder? I should not have ignored her so much but I thought she would grow out of it.”

“What did she like when she was a little girl?” Sinagha asked.

“She had a small Smurfette doll that she always carried with her,” the brother replied.

“Here it is.” and he produced a small stuffed doll about the size of his palm.

“Can I take it for the day?”… he asked him.

“Please find her for me,” sobbed the father.

“She’s my baby and I don’t know what I would do without her. Her brother and sister are losing their minds with worry”

So thats the plan! the boss RCMP finally said. Your tribal police will provide security while we go in from the east side and begin our sweeps. I think we will have this all wrapped up by the end of the day if not sooner. The Tribal Police didn’t like the plan at all but they were a small Police force and they had limited support. Their chief was not much help either. It’s just a white person anyways they are looking for. Let them handle it for themselves is what they were told.

This didn’t sit well with the Tosguna but they ended up having to accept what was laid out in plans for them.

“Where is your tracker?” The boss RCMP asked.

It occurred to him that he hadn’t seen or heard from him in about 5 minutes. He disappeared as quietly as he appeared.

“Oh he left a little while ago when you were talking.”

He said to not let the RCMP and City Police shoot themselves in the foot. They are kinda crazy…

The sky was just starting to get light by the time he made his way into the bush and sat just outside a valley meadow watching the day grow up. He had long since walked a couple miles from his car to where he wanted to start. He wanted to be as far away as he could from the RCMP and City Police.

The first snow of the fall happened. It was a chilly and wet day and he laid hidden.

He remained motionless as the wet snow ran down off his hat and on to the barrel of his gun that laid across his legs.Though he was well-camouflaged he barely moved.

He thought about the girl that was lost. Its been 5 days now and the chances are not good that she is alive. Still he felt that he had to help.

There was an approaching rustling off to the side but he didn’t look. Not even daring to move his eyes from across the small clearing. The rustling got closer and he tried a slight slow glance. They were Bohemian waxwings and they were in search of their food. Flitting from branch to branch. Getting closer and closer not much paying attention to him until they flocked all around him wondering what he was. They should be scared but they were not. They just perched around him and carried on with their business of finding food.

One flew right up to a twig that was right in front of his face and studied him for a few seconds. Turning his head one way and then the other. The bird captured his attention and started to speak to him in a language he understood. He hadn’t heard it spoken for a very long time but he know what was being said.

“We always look after our families. Even when one is sick we will help to feed them.”

“Your long ago dreams were not dreams at all my son,” spoke the bird.

“We have always been around you watching and guiding”.

“She is not doing well. And she does not have that long to live. Don’t stay here too long.”

The family of Mazini (wolves) are howling out about hunting her down.

Eventually they moved on and he could breathe once again.

……………To be continued……….

(Feb 24, 2015)

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