Category Archives: Sapphic Writings

These are the stories of two talented writers, well, more or less talented because I think that Bethany is the better writress. No wonder, English is her mother-tongue while I have a hard Austrian dialect.

Arianrhod – Another thrilling story by Bethany

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Rating: 4.7/6 (7 votes cast)

“He will say I’m a whore, and I will be one for fucking another man when my bridegroom sits alone in our house, suffering like a cuck!” She gave Meghyn a playful push from her lap to the other empty chair.

Arianrhod

arianrhod

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Rating: +3 (from 3 votes)

Batrea (Chapter 2)

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Rating: 5.8/6 (5 votes cast)

“Fuck”! Trea slid the steam-fogged shower door back and realized she had once again gotten in the shower without remembering to bring a clean towel into the bathroom with her. “MOM”! she shouted, but she knew her mom was probably down in the kitchen out of earshot. She wrung the water from her long auburn hair and stepped out onto the rug leaving wet footprints as rivulets gathered in the crack of her pert bottom and dripped off the curves of her naked body. She turned off the fan to hear if her father could be heard walking around upstairs and when the coast seemed clear, she opened the bathroom door and steam poured out into the cooler hallway. She padded dripping wet across the hall to the linen closet to grab a towel and quickly wrapped it around her body, then pulled out another one for her hair which was plastered around her neck and shoulders like a wet mop. She heard the chime of her phone and ran into her room to read her text. Her father had made Trea leave her phone at home for their trip to her uncle’s because it irritated him to see her texting her friends all the time. “can u come over”? texted her bff Mindy. “No. Gotta go to Chad’s” Trea texted back. “Bet I know why. lol Did U decide yet”? came Mindy’s response. “No! C U at church”! Trea replied then quickly slid her phone closed, tossed it on the bed and toweled her damp skin dry. She dug her hair-dryer out of the bottom drawer of her dresser and sat on the edge of her bed bowing her head through the hot gust of wind, forcing it in towards her roots, then combing the stream of warm air out through her tangled tresses. She started thinking about what Mindy was referring to in her message and her damp skin felt like she hadn’t toweled it at all because she was now perspiring lightly with the heat of the hair-dryer. Her father peeked his head in her doorway startling Trea. Her arms were over her head tossing her hair as she dried it and she jerked her arms down reflexively fearing her boobs had fallen out of her towel, but her dad had already left the doorway. ‘Damn him’! she thought. ‘I never have any privacy around here’!.

“Batrea”! her father called to her from the kitchen door as she rounded the car. “Do a good job for Mr.Turner, girl! You’re lucky to HAVE work this summer”! Trea tossed her phone on the front seat and slammed the car door closed as she started off across town to Mr. Turner’s office. At a traffic light she sat and texted Mindy who’d just sent her a message: “When ur done w/ turner, cum 2 chelsea’s. Her folks are gone”. “kk”. Trea thumbed-out as a car behind her honked impatiently. Instead of pulling away through the intersection she quickly texted Mindy: “Do u think I should”? Two question marks appeared on her screen in reply as the car behind her leaned on their horn to get her to move. Chad Turner had asked Trea to work weekends before. She knew it would only be a couple of hours of actual work and on weekends Chad’s wife Melanie would be there and Melanie always treated Trea like an adult, which was why Trea liked her so much. The work was always boring. Trea couldn’t imagine any aspect of insurance which couldn’t be boring, Although he was only in his mid-40s, Chad had very limited acumen with computers, so he left digitizing his paperwork to Trea. That she imagined must be the least boring aspect of managing an insurance brokerage, except for the Turner’s obvious income. She pulled all the way up the Turner’s driveway as Chad’s office was in the back of their home which like all the houses in this part of town reflected a prosperity greater than that of her own neighborhood. She opened the gate and walked past the pool which glowed a luminescent blue from the underwater lights. The night air was making wisps of vapor swirl up into the air in ghost-like vortices. The Turners had invited Trea to bring her friends over anytime to use the pool, at least all her girlfriends, that is. “I like your hair, dear”! Mrs. Turner said as she closed the back door and took Trea in to the business office. “Chad will be right in. Did you have a good time at your cousin’s today”? Trea felt at ease talking to Melanie, who was an attractively fit strawberry-blond in her late thirties, and would have told her all about her trip, but Chad showed up with a sheaf of client folders in his hand and Mrs. Turner winked at Trea and said she’d talk to her later.

For all her father’s exhortations about respecting her elders, Trea’s actual relationship with Chad was much more informal than her father would have abided. Batrea had started out as the Turner’s baby-sitter the summer before, but through her care for their 9-year old daughter Krystal, she had become more like a member of the family. Mr. Turner had always encouraged a casual familiarity between them and because of his kindness and easy-going manner, Trea had never considered Chad in her father’s generation even though they were close to the same age. Mr. Turner had always shown an interest in Trea’s school activities and in her friends. His agency sponsored teams that many of her friends had been on in various summer sports, and she had played softball one year wearing a jersey with the Turner Insurance Agency logo on the back. He knew the names of her friends and listened to her gossip about Sherry Hundley and her clique, and she was sometimes surprised at the things he already seemed to know about some of the kids in her school whose extra-curricular activities she had imagined were only told in secret between kids her own age. He often joked that he had been a hellion in his school days and Trea could easily picture a younger and more athletic version of this good-looking middle-aged man with his thick shock of dark hair a little bit longer and without the wisps of gray in his temples. She never could imagine her own father being as cool as Chad must have been when he was her age, nor even thought of her dad as ever having been young at all. Chad handed her a small stack of files and she knew the routine and started sorting the paperwork into piles that required scanning and piles that merely needed to be collated back into their original order when she was finished. She sat down in front of his desktop computer and opened the OCR program that would upload and store the documents in digital format.

“So did Sherry really take a job down at Hedveg’s place”? Chad asked conversationally as Trea took the last documents out of the scanner and put them back in their folders. “Ummm, yeah! That’s what Mindy said”. she replied, turning her head slightly. Prestle’s diner had long since been owned by any members of the Prestle family, who had opened the locally famous downtown establishment in the fifties and turned it into the most popular dining place in the area. For the last ten years it had been owned and operated by Heidi Meiers, who carefully preserved the tradition of good food and good service even after all the members of the Prestle family had either died or moved away. Trea knew that Ms. Meiers was locally known by both names but she didn’t know which was her real name and which was her nickname. Everyone from her father’s generation simply knew Heidi as Hedveg and everyone of all ages knew she was a lesbian. Chad often teased Trea about Sherry and knew of her frustration at being in Sherry’s shadow all through her school years but he also knew how to make Trea feel good about herself, telling her that her beauty was more natural, and Sherry’s advantages had more to do with who her family was than anything else. Even though she knew she was being flirted with, Mr. Turner told her things she loved hearing and she wasn’t at all uncomfortable because Chad already had a beautiful wife and the attention he gave Batrea swelled her teen-aged ego more than it offended her sense of propriety. She confided all she’d heard about Logansport’s belle and Chad tried to dissuade her from feeling the desire to follow Sherry Hundley to the restaurant and competing with her in that venue too. “I’d miss you too much”! he whispered in her ear while squeezing her shoulders from behind. “Did you think about what we talked about last time”? Here it came! Trea flushed and suddenly felt very warm and excited. She had hoped for more time to consider Chad’s request but knew she couldn’t stall forever. “Melanie’s out in the whirlpool. Why don’t you go out and see her while I put these files away”. Trea felt her chair being pulled out from the desk and knew she had to make a decision as she was being inexorably steered towards the pool door. She could feel her palms sweating and her heart race as she realized the moment was upon her. Last week Chad had asked the pretty 17-year old to join them in a menage-a-trois. It was a plan he had been grooming her for all summer and Trea had enjoyed the flirtations from the attractive couple for weeks without giving them any overt signals of receptivity, but her tacit acceptance of their affections was now being construed as consent. She wondered if her passivity was her own way of saying yes without actually having to say ‘yes’. And now she may have passed the point of no return as she walked out in the night air towards Melanie who was lounging casually in the whirlpool.

Batrea knew something was going to happen tonight. She just wasn’t sure what, or how far she would let it go, but her heart was still racing as she thought about it. She’d had numerous fantasies of how her virginity would be lost. It almost happened a month ago when Mindy asked her to have sex with her boyfriend with her for his 18th birthday. But when the moment finally came and Trea stripped naked with Mindy for Brandon’s big birthday present, they had gotten no farther than giving him a double-blowjob before his parents had unexpectedly come home, ending their fun in a mad dash for their clothes. Trea had been relieved and disappointed at the same time, but tonight was going to end differently she decided. Melanie watched her from the whirlpool as Trea kicked her shoes off and dipped her foot in the warm water of the swimming pool, then beckoned her over with a wave of her hand. Trea carried her shoes over and sat down with her legs dangling in the swirling foam of the whirlpool. “Get in, sweetie”! Melanie urged. “Didn’t bring a suit”! Trea demurred, but the beautiful blond laughed and pushed herself more upright against the ledge of the whirlpool so Trea could see she was topless. “I can get you one if you’re bashful”! Melanie teased with a smile. Trea felt her heart nearly pounding out of her chest and she looked around to see if any neighbor’s windows were in line of sight of the pool. When she’d reassured herself that no witnesses would see what she was about to do, she peeled her top off, and tossed it next to a stack of towels. She took a deep breath to screw up her courage, reached back and unfastened her bra. She thought she would feel scared but she didn’t! Affecting her best look on nonchalance she completed her strip by rolling back and pulling her shorts and panties off her hips and down her legs til she was naked. She almost wished she hadn’t checked that the coast was clear because the moment she felt herself completely nude in the warm night air, she felt exhilarated and wished that there WERE people watching her bare breasts bounce freely. Trea got up and stood proudly naked at the lip of the swimming pool with the lights dancing around her young curves after being reflected off the surface of the water. She dove in and instantly felt the water caressing every inch of her body. Her breasts bobbed freely with every movement underwater and she felt them tugging her torso in whatever direction they wanted to float. She came up for air and looked over at the house and then to the whirlpool, but no one was to be seen. She wanted nothing more now than to show off her body to the Turners, but no one… she twirled around and Melanie bobbed to the surface almost in her arms. She slicked her hair back on her head and put her arms over Trea’s shoulders. They both kicked underwater to stay afloat and Melanie curled her forearms behind Trea’s neck and pulled herself close to Trea so their breasts touched. “Chad and I have wanted to see you like this all summer”! Melanie confessed. They both sputtered as their mouths dipped below the water line and then back up again. Trea wrapped her legs around Melanie’s and felt that she was also completely nude.

Melanie hugged her tight and then kissed her lightly under her ear. Trea felt the warmth of her skin pressing against her as the cooler water slipped in and out of the narrow cracks shifting around between their contours. She became aware of their mounds rubbing together and she surrendered herself to a deep kiss as Melanie’s tongue took hers by surprise. She reached down deep and felt her hands cupping around Melanie’s bare bubble-ass as their kiss got deeper and more intense. The surface of the water grew still around them as their kiss lingered. Trea was almost entranced by the intimacy. All summer she had been attracted to Melanie’s self-confident beauty and even tried to emulate her mannerisms and easy-going charm, but now they were locked in an embrace as lovers. Melanie broke apart and pulled Trea by the wrist back towards the edge of the pool where they found their footing on the ledge under the lip of the pool-deck. They each threw an elbow onto the rough concrete deck but the line of blue paint along the edge softened the roughness. Trea felt Melanie’s knee push between her legs and she allowed the woman to press the top of her thigh into Trea’s bare-shaved pussy and rub it through her groove, spreading her lips open on Melanie’s skin. Both their breasts bobbed just under the surface of the water and Melanie would lift Trea with her thigh between her legs so the young girl’s breasts broke the surface and felt the warmth of the summer night. She ran her hands over Trea’s breasts and then around under her armpits and hoisted Trea up so she was sitting on the ledge, then got between her open thighs kissing Trea’s breasts and sucking her nipples one then the other. Trea leaned back on her arms and felt Melanie’s tongue wandering around her bare breasts as she closed her eyes and listened to the night-sounds. A beautiful woman was making love to her she thought as she felt Melanie’s full breasts slide down the lower curves of her taut tummy and squeeze together as they were pushed between her wide-spread thighs. Trea knew what was about to happen and she shivered with the thrill as Melanie’s lips and tongue trailed lower and lower. Melanie gently pulled her bottom towards the edge and Trea felt Mrs. Turner’s shoulders touch the undersides of her thighs as her hands reached around the top of her legs to steady her. Trea still had her eyes closed… waiting… She knew the older woman was staring at her wide-open pussy from only inches away, caressing her with her eyes. Trea wondered if Chad were watching them from the patio door, or from a bedroom window above. She couldn’t believe that this long, tiresome day had turned into such an unexpectedly tantalizing night.

(c) 2011 Bethany Ariel Frasier

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Rating: +9 (from 9 votes)

The Falls

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Rating: 5.8/6 (7 votes cast)

TS560x560You come for solitude, and solace. This place is your special paradise, farther upstream from where the lower falls gather into an awesome cascade attracting so many to its beauty. But these falls are smaller, more personal in scale, and a harder climb to reach for the throngs of tourists who crowd the base of the falls below, so you know you are alone, feeling the special beauty of a natural wonder which is yours to enjoy in peace. As you have done many times before you’ve waded into the foaming pool under the shower tumbling over the massive rocks of the cliff above. You’ve immersed yourself naked as you were when you were born, for this place is virgin purity in your mind and in your heart, drawing you in…beauty to beauty. As the effervescent pool rises around your perfect figure, circling your naked body with sparkling pure water, you close your eyes and cup your hands into its freshness, pulling up cool rivulets which chill your warm skin as it escapes through your slender fingers, following the sensuous curves of your figure as it returns down to the foam again. You cup your full, firm breasts with wet hands and feel your nipples hardening instantly into your palms. You look down at the marvel of your own beauty and are suddenly reminded that most of your body is still above the water-line, so you look to your sides and over your shoulder to see if anyone has intruded into your private world. You relax and close your eyes again as you move towards the mist that is flying off the waterfall. There is nothing but the roar of the falls all around you but again you feel you are not alone. You lower yourself instinctively into the water to hide your nudity until you are re-assured that no one is watching, but then you think to look up, and I am there.

Perched high above you in the rocks near the top of the torrent you see me through the spray sitting with my legs hidden in a side-pool looking down over the falls, in awe of the beauty I see. You. We just stare at each other. Against the glare of the sky you can only see the outline of my body, but I am naked too. My long hair is lifted in waves of silkiness as the breeze generated by the updraft of the falls pulls it away from my shoulders. I stand so you can see me better and know that I am like you, a kindred sister drawn to beauty. A sister who like you, is beautiful. I stretch my arm out and give you a friendly wave and you relax. More than relaxed, you rise from the water to let me see you in all your naked perfection, and you feel aroused when you see that slight movement of attention I make and know that I am aroused too. You watch anxiously as I thread my way down slippery rock crevices and draw closer to you. As I stand upon the edge of an out-cropping you see my whole body for the first time, no longer haloed by the glare of the sky. You see my smile. You see my beauty. But as I teeter on the edge, your excitement becomes tinged with alarm for you are afraid I am about to dive and the water in which you are standing is too shallow for me to survive the fall. But I know these falls, and angle my leap to the side where the pool is deeper. You wade through the water and enter the falls to cut across the distance directly, fearful of what you will find when you emerge from the cascade. Your footing upon the rocks makes the traverse slow-going and your heart begins to race with fear for me, but when you emerge from the shower I am there waiting for you with my wet hair pulled back over one shoulder, my breasts bobbing in the buoyant, oxygen-filled water. You reach out your hand and I swim over to you through the deep pool into which I plunged and regain my footing where the rocks rise beneath you.

“Hi”! we both say together and laugh as I take your hand and you pull me towards you. My foot slides down the slippery face of the the rock upon which I’ve approached you and you catch me, pulling our bodies together. I feel your warmth as my soft breasts press into yours and I hold onto you for support. Underwater my bare feet search for footing and briefly caress yours. I widen my stance so I can stand with you unsupported and feel the rushing water tickling my opening lips between my legs. My mind fills with erotic excitement at the rushing stimulation of my bare-shaved sex and I know the current of water is hitting you the same way. “It feels wonderful, doesn’t it”? you say, but the roar of the falls makes talking difficult so we just stand arm in arm and enjoy the exhilarating feelings we are sharing together. Whether by some magic of the falls or the perfect beauty of the moment, we both feel the connection between us and without even needing to know each others’ names we draw together under the rain of water to kiss. Tentatively at first, and then feeling a welcoming sense of oneness we close warmly upon each others’ mouths and make love with our tongues, learning and sharing not with words, but familiarizing each other with every wordless expression of passion our mouths can impart. As the thrill of the moment sweeps us up together as one pillar of fire the foam swirling around our joined bodies seems more like steam, for the coolness of the whirlpool cannot overcome the heat we are generating together! My thigh lifts and I wrap my leg around you pulling your mound tightly against mine and we both know we are going to share everything together, that the falls which were once our companions in solitude had given us both the gift of each other. Our passion would forever be linked to this place… to this moment, and our union would be consummated under its perfect veil. Hands caressing each others’ breasts in needful urgency and fingers exploring each others’ burning-hot pussies in the cool, swirling waters. My hair whips around in a wet twirl as your fingers find my G-spot and my body shudders in ecstasy. My knees start to buckle and you pull me tightly against you feeling my heartbeat pounding under our breasts. The fire burning in my eyes builds with yours and you smile a wicked grin that melts my heart. I want nothing more than to taste you, to bury my tongue in your sex and deliver you into paroxysms of pleasure.

With a devilish plan I throw us off-balance and we plunge into the foaming water laughing in each others arms and floating with the current towards the edge of the pool. Reaching a flat ledge we pull ourselves up onto the rock which has been warmed by the morning sun and sit together exploring each other with desirous eyes. We kiss and kiss again while I comb my fingers lovingly through your long, wet hair. Rivulets of water trace trails around your sensuous curves raising erotic goosebumps on your flawless skin. My fingertips lead my eyes as they caress their way to your nipples finding the delicious contrast of hardness upon softness. I knead you tenderly between wet fingers and you close your eyes, tilting your chin to the refreshing mist billowing from the falls in tenuous wind drafts. Your thighs part as I kneel between them and I gently lay you back upon soft mosses while my lips descend over your flesh, closing around your nipples. Your sudden intake of breath lifts your breasts into my face and I fill my palms with their soft weight, pulling them together as I suckle you needfully. A shiver trembles through you and I feel your ragged breath blowing away droplets of water as they collect upon your quivering lips. Your body shudders with an urgeful moan and I release your nipple, trailing my tongue down your tummy towards your welling sex. Your fingernails dig into soft moss in anticipation as I round your mons and soon your soft petals are gathered into my tugging lips. I cleave you with my tongue, tasting your sweet, silky discharge and your cries of joy are lost behind the roar of the falls. You look down and see the delighted smile in my eyes and weakly surrender your body to me as I slide my hands under the soft globes of your ass. You squirm and writhe as my tongue wiggles playfully into you and then climbs to tease your hardening nub from under its hood. Your thighs shake and I hold you fast to my lips feeling your climax approaching with every thrust of my tongue. At the edge of ecstasy you hover with your breath caught fast and I finally push you over the precipice like the water falling from the rocks far over our heads, and like the falls you spill your love into my mouth in surging convulsions of pleasure until you are utterly spent, and I am thoroughly satiated. The waterfall now belongs to both of us. We met under its watery canopy as strangers and emerged as lovers.
bb8

(c) 2008 Bethany Ariel Frasier

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Welcome to the Pow-wow!

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For those of you who know me well, you know I am part Cherokee and grew up learning Native American traditions from my grandmother. Sadly, she died almost a year ago at age 80 having fought a valiant struggle with lung-cancer. We treasured the time we had with her and the last Native American event I was able to take her to was a Pow-wow at the Great Circle Mound near where I live in the center of Licking County. The site is a 2,000 year old Native American earthwork mound built by the Hopewell Civilization and having the Pow-wow at such a sacred site was a great honor to the members of our Native American Indian Center of Central Ohio who organized the Pow-wow. My grandmother and I have participated in these events when I was younger and you can see a picture of me dressed in Native garb above, but this time we just attended as visitors since my grandmother needed so much assistance. My boyfriend took some video of the drum-circle showing some of the dancers in the background which I uploaded to another site. Here is an article from our local newspaper describing the event:

Click here for the Link

Every Pow-wow is different but there are a few common aspects which are important rituals so I’ll describe some of them here:

The Drum Circle: Gathered around a large, traditional Native drum, a group of men led by an elder pound out the drumbeat to which we dance. The drummers are usually men because most Native American tribes are patriarchal with only a couple exceptions, my Cherokee tribe and the Navajo of the desert southwest. Among the Cherokee, the women hold dominance, hold the land and property rights, and hold all the important decision-making positions. Perhaps this is why the Cherokee have always had a tradition of being the most peaceful of all the Native tribes. However, at a Pow-wow, all the different tribes come together and the drum-circle is nearly always made up of men. The drumbeat symbolizes the heartbeat of the Great Spirit which brought us forth on the Earth.

The Dance: Around a central point marked by either a totem, a bon-fire, or other symbolic focal-point, the dancers circle in a slow procession to the beat of the sacred drum. There are many different dances, but usually at least one foot makes contact with the sacred earth in either a tapping step or a supportive step for every beat of the drum. Beyond that nearly every individual has their own stylization based on a common dance-type. We enter a deep communion with the heartbeat of the drum and some even enter a trance-state. It is a deeply personal and meaningful connection to our spirituality.

The Welcoming Line: It is important to respect and honor your guests. As a Pow-wow can go on for days and newcomers are always showing up, the welcoming line is periodically set up by the organizers of the event to show respect to their guests and visitors, be they participants or onlookers. A receiving line of all the hosts draws new arrivals into the inner circle of the event welcoming them with a big hug and pat on the back. Touching each other is an important part of feeling communion when we gather from many different tribes, clans, or walks of life.

Native dress: At any Pow-wow you will see many of us dress in our traditional clothing, especially the dancers. Sometimes we dress in full Native regalia according to our tribe or our clan affiliation within the tribe, from feathered head-dress to beaded moccasins and everything in-between! But many times we just wear simpler outfits: jeans and a tee-shirt embroidered with a tribal design. Sometimes I wear just a headband and Native jewelry with a couple brightly-colored feathers laced into my hair. Every tribe has different beadwork patterns to differentiate themselves and they are always very colorful! Feathers from different bird species have different meanings too.

The Gifting: The Native American host is always a generous provider to his guests. At every gathering a blanket is spread and an array of gifts are presented. The hosts of the event first call up the elders of each clan to receive first choice of the gift selection. Then one by one, other designated groups are called up to the gift-line until finally the children are turned loose to claim the remaining treasures. The gifts can range from hand-made native crafts to boxes of pencils or other every-day useful items, but everybody gets something.

Sacred moments: Each event is blessed, but some dances and rituals are especially sacred to the elders. These events are announced, but in the noise and confusion many outsiders do not hear the announcements and usually a member of the organizing council will go around politely asking observers not to take pictures, videos or do other intrusive activities while a sacred moment transpires. It is simply a matter of respect. I forgot to mention this to David when he began video-ing one of the ceremonies over my shoulder and that is why he didn’t get to record much. He and several others were asked to stop shooting their cameras during that particular dance. But that was my fault for not paying attention.

Indian food: Modern Indian Pow-wows are usually welcoming of all comers, Native and non-Native alike, so thousands can show up! The Native American tradition of feeding all their guests has of necessity had to be modified for the modern Pow-wow. In other words… food ain’t free! It is plentiful however and there is a large variety offered for sale in a giant food tent. You can usually find Indian chilis, Indian taco’s, fry-bread, and other common Native staples along with more traditional American food, but the custom of ‘pigging-out’ at a Pow-wow is alive and well!

Trading: Invariably you will find all sorts of Indian-crafts for sale at numerous vender’s tents set up all around the perimeter of the event. Beads, jewelry, art, and Native-crafts of every variety can be found at a Pow-wow. I play the Native American 6-hole flute so I always look for the flutes whenever I go. They are made of cedar mostly, which has the softest and most resonent sound, but more beautifully-figured hardwood flutes with a brighter sound can be found too, and I have a collection of both which I’ve purchased from Native craftsmen from Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico to the Cherokee reservations of North Carolina where our tribal lands were originally located. Some Indian flautists amplify their flutes and run the signal through an echo-processor so the sound is reminiscent of the rich, atmospheric sound of a flute being played in a box-canyon. You can hear the sound on many recordings and CD’s available by Native flautists like Coyote Old Man, and R. Carlos Nakai. I was trained to play by a Pueblo Indian in Santa Fe named Sky Redhawk, and I go back to visit him whenever David and I travel out west. But at most any Pow-wow you can hear an Indian flautist performing.

I hope some of you have read this through to the end because we Native Americans love to share our culture with everyone and we are a very proud people, even though many of us are now of mixed blood. The Cherokee women of the lower Appalachians commonly married Scottish men who emigrated and settled in our mountains because it reminded them so much of the Scottish highlands they left behind. Many Scottish traditions are similar to native tradition insofar as clan denominations, clan-markers: Tartans for the Scots and beadwork for the Native Americans for example. A strong oral tradition of story-telling is common to both nations also as well as sharing a tradition for being fierce warriors. You can tell by my Scottish last name that I’m descended from one of those Scots-Cherokee pairings. I hope you all get to experience an Indian Pow-wow someday! I’ve enjoyed them all my life! O-si-yo!
woodland beth

(c) February 19th, 2013 Bethany Ariel Frasier

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Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)

Batrea (Chapter 1)

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Batrea Samantha Tyden sat with her long legs propped up on the open back window sill of her parents’ tan Mercury sedan feeling the rush of the wind against the bottoms of her bare, size-7 feet. She’d taken her pink socks off along with nearly everything else she could to cool off without her father turning around and chiding her again. He refused to turn on the air-conditioning so Trea was sweating down her back and between her thighs. She could see her mother in the front seat lifting her hair and mopping the sweat from the back of her neck every few miles, but neither of them dared say a word about the oppressive July heat to Trea’s father who was already in a worse mood than he usually was. Every bump along Highway 51 jarred her bottom in clockwork rhythm as the tires bounced over the deteriorating seams of the Indiana state route between Trea’s uncle’s house and their home in north-central Cass County. The 17 year-old girl wanted the long ride to end but even though she didn’t know exactly where they were in relation to home, she knew they still had a long way to go. She picked up the grocery bag full of clothes her aunt had given her and looked through it again, paying closer attention to the hand-me-downs that her cousin no longer wanted after leaving home to go to Holy Cross College half-way across the state. Her cousin Brenda was almost exactly her size, so this was just the latest donation of clothes she had inherited from her slightly older cousin. Trea had hoped to see Brenda at the annual Tyden family re-union, but Brenda had gotten a summer job in South Bend working at a Dairy Queen with some friends from college and had an excuse not to show up at the tiresome yearly family event. Trea and Brenda used to spend summers together when they were in 6th, 7th, and 8th grade, but Trea’s father had complained about the cost of another mouth to feed when it was their turn to host Brenda over the summer after Trea started high school, so they had not seen each other very much for a couple of years. Trea pulled out a pretty bra from the bottom of the bag and was surprised by two things: first that it was a sexy VS bra with lacy trim, she hadn’t expected her aunt to let Brenda buy such an expensive brassiere, and second that Brenda’s boobs were now that size! Brenda had always been small-breasted when they were in junior high. She must have had a growth-spurt in the past two years. They had been curious at each others pubescent development, and while in bed together at her aunt and uncle’s house they had played with each others budding breasts. Trea wished she could see Brenda’s chest now that she was in college!

“Shit”! her father exclaimed out of the blue.
“What IS it, Bob”? her mother replied.
“Why didn’t you remind me to ask Jake for that come-along he borrowed from me last summer”? he fumed.
“Bob, you’ve never needed it! Is it that important”?
“Its the principle of the thing! He’s had it for over a year”! The frequency of the road bumps noticeably increased every time her father was upset about something as his foot bore down harder on the accelerator. In a minute her mom would press her foot into the floor mat and place her hand on the dashboard as her nervousness increased and her father would then look over at her, irritated further by the implied criticism of his lead-foot driving.
“Will you relax”? he said impatiently. The car slowed down to just over the speed-limit again.

Trea rolled her eyes and looked off to the side of the road as the endless flatness of northern Indiana rolled by. She glanced down at the bra again and slid over to the side of the back seat behind her father so he couldn’t see her in the rear-view mirror. She reached under her shirt and pulled her arms out of her own bra straps and slid her old, worn-out bra around her waist, un-hooked it and yanked it out from under her shirt. She was going to put on her cousin’s lacy bra before her mom found it in the bag of clothes and claimed it for herself. She arched her back forward off the car-seat and hooked the newer bra around her waist but before she hiked it up around her boobs she reached under her shirt and wiped the sweat from the under-sides of her breasts and wiped her damp hands off on her shorts. She looked down and saw the raisins of her nipples poking up through the cotton-knit shirt and admired her own chest before pulling the bra up and around her. At the re-union she had caught her uncle staring at her breasts more than once and finally resorted to crossing her arms over her chest to keep him from ogling at her. But after she had done so a couple of times, she found herself missing the attention, and deliberately threw out her 34-C chest to see if he would stare at them again. He did, of course. He had put his plate down on the picnic table directly across from where she sat, squeezing in between two of her younger cousins for the vantage point, or so she guessed.

The car had slowed down, passing through another small town and the tree-shaded streets were a welcome relief to the hot sun streaming in her window. After passing rows of old Victorian houses for several blocks she saw three cute boys on bicycles staring at her from a driveway ahead as she leaned both arms on the window-sill. As they got closer she reached down on the seat and grabbed her old worn-out bra and threw it at them as their car rolled past them. She looked over her shoulder quickly to see if her dad had seen her do it, and then poked her head out the window to see if any of the boys had caught it. She saw all three of them tangled up in their falling bicycles as they all tried to grab her bra where it had landed in the grass. They were whooping and waving at her as her father slowed down to stop at a light. She suddenly realized they might try to ride after the car to catch up to her at the stop-light and she ducked down in the back seat praying the light would turn green before they could get there. If they did and her mother had found out what she had done, she would be in big trouble! Mercifully the car pulled off into the intersection and she turned around quickly to look out the rear window but the boys were still half way down the block passing her bra back and forth between them.

The car rolled along through several blocks of downtown businesses and near the end she saw a tattoo parlor in the first floor of an old building with the letters IOOF and number 267 cut into the keystone over one of window arches on the top floor. She wondered what they stood for and almost asked her father, but decided not to. There were two darkly tanned men in sleeveless shirts talking in front of the store and she could see their tattoos covering their arms. She tried to make out what the designs were, but couldn’t see them clearly enough. She had a couple of classmates who had gotten tramp-stamps on their lower backs and she wanted one someday too, but could never decide what kind of design she would like permanently inked onto her backside. Her mother would be horrified if she did it, so she never asked her if she could have one. She wished her parents weren’t so strict with her. As she looked back at the two men she noticed the upper floors of the old building appeared to be empty and deserted. Boxes were piled up behind the dirty windows which had neither curtains nor blinds. She wondered how long they’d been sitting there abandoned and unused. What was behind those dark old windows, and did anyone ever go up there. She imagined endless lonely nights passing year after year with no one ever entering those old high-ceilinged rooms upstairs as dust drifted through late-afternoon sunbeams slanting in through the tall windows facing the street. She pictured in her mind those two men dragging her by the arms up a darkened stairwell to the upper floor of that old building while she struggled to get free. She vividly imagined her feet tripping and catching over torn rubber treads up the dusty stairs. At the top they would throw her down on an old stained mattress, surrounded by piles of junk, ripping her clothes off of her while she tried to scream for help, but no one would hear her through those century-old brick walls. They would take turns holding her down while the other one raped her over and over. “TREA”! her father shouted. “Where’s your head at”?!

Trea startled to her senses and realized her father had been talking to her. She also realized her pussy lips were slippery and soaking wet. She reached into her panties and drew back a finger covered with her silky juices while her father repeated himself.
“Mr. Turner wants you to go over to his office when we get home. He called this morning and has some work he needs done before his office opens Monday morning”.
Chad Turner was her father’s insurance agent. He had offered her a job after school hours and part-time during the summer filing insurance policies after scanning them into his office computer. She had worked in his office for several months and her dad always stressed the importance of being able to hold a job and stick with it no matter what. Her dad always called him MISTER Turner to impress upon Trea the importance of treating her elders with respect. But in his office he always wanted her to call him Chad. He paid her well enough for filing and office work but she was trying to get a job at Prestle’s Diner because she’d heard how much the waitresses made in tips. But Sherry Hundley had been hired instead. Sherry beat her out of every opportunity Trea had ever aspired to. She was prettier, more popular, and came from a better family. Trea knew she would never be as popular as she wanted to be as long as Sherry Hundley was always one step ahead of her.

“TREA! Did you hear what I said”? her dad barked.
“YES, dad”!

Trea slunk down in the backseat and sulked. She thought about the fantasy her father had interrupted and wondered why she had so many rape fantasies. Was she perverted? Sick? She sat with her legs folded under her and her ankles crossed. With her thighs spread wide she quietly played with her swollen clit through her damp shorts. She closed her eyes and felt the car descending down a gentle grade. The sun was lowering in the sky and the air seemed less oppressively hot. She sleepily thought of Brenda and how her breasts were now filling Brenda’s bra, and her pussy became even wetter. The car slowed to a stop, then inched forward and stopped again. She heard her dad’s fingers tapping on the steering wheel impatiently and opened her eyes hazily and saw her mom’s head turned to look out the window. She looked out to see what she was looking at and they were straddling a railroad crossing with cars ahead of them and behind them. She saw the railroad tracks curving out of sight less than half a mile down the rail-bed and she realized her mom was worried about the bright headlamp of a train appearing around the curve coming toward them. Trea looked down the track in the other direction as her dad cursed the traffic and shouted: “MOVE”! Down the tracks to her left were two teen-aged girls, each walking barefoot down their respective rail with their arms reaching across the ties holding hands and steadying each other as they balanced their footing. They were the sexiest girls Trea had ever seen. All they were wearing were skimpy bikinis and as she watched their half-exposed bubble-asses wiggling as they walked down the tracks away from her she noticed they were hopping together with every fourth step as if they were counting off their footsteps in a dance. It was the most erotic thing she had ever seen. Trea was entranced by their long, silky hair swaying with the swing of their hips and bouncing with every hop. Their long legs were perfect. Everything about them was perfect except the bottoms of their feet which were filthy with the grease on the tracks. She felt her pussy tingling with the thrill of what she was watching. All she wanted was to follow those girls, catch up to them and join them. The only other girl she had ever had a sexual experience with was her cousin, and what they had done together on those long-ago summer nights seemed so innocent compared to what Trea wanted to do with these girls. She could only imagine what their breasts might look like, …bouncing with every fourth step. Trea pulled her hair up off her neck with her fist and swished it back and forth to cool off. The car slowly pulled forward off the tracks and Trea strained to watch the girls until they were obscured by the trees as they left the crossing behind. Trea wished she knew why she had these intensely sexual feelings all the time. She masturbated every day now. She looked forward to moments when her parents weren’t around. She wanted to do things she knew were bad but she didn’t think she was a bad girl. Her pussy burned hot and wet for the rest of the ride home as she kept thinking about those two girls. Was she a lesbian? She had never had intercourse with a boy but she knew she would someday. She had done other things. Her father would kill her if he knew!

(c) 2011 Bethany Frasier

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Starship Starbride

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emjJwlIt was said they would never dream. How could they? Even the tell-tale signs of rapid-eye-movement were suppressed in the stasis-field of the ship’s hibernaculum, their life processes held in suspension as shimmering blue cryo-gasses inhibited even cellular mitosis. Brain-waves barely registered on the bio-scanners, and yet somehow, deep in the hidden recesses of her sub-consciousness the dreams came! An erotic tableau of her most secret desires unfolded irrepressibly, as the young flight officer could only lie in her sealed sarcophagus with her life-processes in a state of cryo-suspension, helplessly lost in her forbidden dreams… sapphic fantasies of her beautiful Captain, who even now lay sleeping beside her in her own hibernation capsule. And the ship’s main computer, closely probing and analyzing the bio-electric impulses coming from the brains of all the hibernating crew members as they slept, watched the arousing scenario on Bethany’s monitor channel as it unfolded, with curious and voyeuristic fascination.

Through all their missions together they had kept their relationship professional. The imperious starship commander and her First Officer were both young and beautiful, but their training and dedication to the rigors of the stellar-exploration fleet had never left room for a personal relationship much more than the expression of the mutual respect and devotion they both felt for one another as officers and shipmates. But as the computer watched, repressed desires were freed from Bethany’s subconscious, and if the young lieutenant-commander herself was unaware of the erotic tableau which was playing out in her subconscious mind, the artificial intelligence controlling the ship while its crew slept through the lonely journey to the Gamma Trianguli system watched every intimate moment, recording the spectacle on a sequestered drive.

Deep in the belly of the ship life-monitors flashed worrisomely and suddenly went dark until signals were re-routed from an emergency back-up sub-system. Override processors took control and diverted power from a long dormant plasma capacitor relay to the re-animation sequencers. Within moments valve solenoids clicked to life after years of inactivity and pressure lines opened equalizing the atmospheres inside the Lexan hibernaculum and the surrounding chamber in the hibernation bay nestled within the dorsal torus of the deep-space exploration ship ‘Starbride’.

Iridescent blue mists receded around the soft contours of the still, nearly lifeless form of a young woman, her prominent breasts now fully exposed beneath the transparent lid of the hibernaculum, and in the coffin-like suspension-chamber next to her another soft, naked figure was being revived by the loss of stasis gasses as they were being evacuated with a slow, steady hiss. Within minutes glazed, lifeless eyes turned liquid and animated, full of questions and beauty. Slowly regaining consciousness through layers of deep sleep, the two women laid side-by-side impatiently waiting through the interminable process of passive tomographic scans and medical sensor evaluations by the system’s medical computer before their bodies were finally released from their stasis clamps.

“Beth”? Captain Kirtomy turned and looked over at her First Officer as she sat up for the first time in years and saw the still-youthful beauty of her second-in-command as she lay naked in her open sarcophagus blinking her eyes in bewilderment, with a nagging restlessness tugging at the back of her mind.SK

“W-Why have we been revived”? Beth looked at the chronometer on the control console and then back to her Captain who was slowly stretching and removing medical monitoring patches from her bare chest.

“I was about to ask YOU the same thing, Miss Science Officer”! said the Captain. Beth tapped out some commands on an interactive display pad in her hibernation unit and a large view-screen came to life half-visible from their semi-prone positions. Upon it several status read-outs began scrolling through the current condition of ship’s key systems. Beth sat up slowly and felt the unaccustomed weight of her breasts being pulled down by the familiar tug of the ship’s artificial gravity which should have been turned off at this point in their long journey, but something had taken over the vessel’s pre-programmed flight routine and prepared the life-support systems for their premature awakening from hibernation. But What?

Glowing softly in the center of the control console across the hibernation bay the monitor “eye” of the SAL-9000 computer which controlled nearly every aspect of the ship’s operation surveyed the physical condition of the two nude women climbing out of their hibernaculi and awaited their questions or commands. The SAL-9000 was the re-designed counterpart of the de-commissioned HAL-9000 computer series which had proven problematical on the early voyages to Jupiter. Giving the upgraded system a female personality made the interactive automaton seem less mechanical and intimidating to the human crew which had to co-habit the ship with it, especially since the two command officers of this star cruiser were both women.

“SAL”! The captain barked. “Explain why we were brought out of stasis prematurely”!

“I’m sorry, Captain. There are some unexplained issues with several of the ship’s key subsystems which warrant closer investigation. My sensors are not providing complete details on the cause of the mal-functions. I thought you should have a look”. SAL’s voice was always soft and melodic, showing little emotion while still retaining a warm, human, and decidedly feminine tonality. The harsh lighting dimmed suddenly to a soft, warm glow and the women’s’ bodies took on a sensuous softness in the subdued light. Sally bent over and tapped the lighting control and her First Officer couldn’t help staring at her moist, swollen pudenda peeking out below her perfectly rounded ass. She tried to stifle the unexpected thrill that knotted her tummy and attempted to open the uniform locker on the wall but it was locked. Sally was still trying to re-route the lighting circuits.

“SAL! Open locker HB-7 please”! Beth commanded. SAL remained inscrutably silent but the servos controlling the locks remained inactive. Beth rubbed her icy-cold foot on her leg to warm it up as the deck was still not heated up to comfortable temperatures.

“Great! We can’t even get dressed”! Beth complained with a soft shiver and an aggravated pout. Sally looked at her First Officer’s stiffly erect nipples and suppressed a smile but just shrugged as if it was not a concern. She had often admired her shipmate’s shapely figure, but being able to see her in the nude for this long a time was definitely not unpleasant, and she struggled to unfocus her mind from Beth’s sensuous curves and back to duty.

“None of these sub-systems are working”! Sally concluded with an exasperated sigh. “We have to run diagnostics from a command terminal. And this deck is so cold I can’t stand it in my bare feet anymore”. Beth reached into her hibernaculum and pulled the soft padding she had slept on out of the unit and tossed it onto the floor for her captain to stand on. “Thanks, hon! One problem solved at least”! Sally responded with a smile. Beth walked over and stood close to Sally just to keep warm and her captain gave her a light pat on her bottom and said: “There’s a junction under this console. Lets see if we can get the panel off without tools”. Both women got on their hands and knees and looked around for a way into the junction module. “Here”! said Beth. “My fingernails aren’t strong enough to pry it open alone. See if you can get yours in too”. Sally got down on her back so she could reach up underneath the console more easily and Beth followed her lead lying as close to her captain as possible so they could both work as a team. They were lying so close together that the sides of their jiggling breasts touched one another as they struggled to force the junction panel open and Sally felt herself being unexpectedly aroused by the intimate touch of her First Officer. Suddenly the panel cover gave way and fell down hitting the surprised First Officer near her eye. Sally quickly pulled herself up on her elbow as Bethany cried out in pain and leaned over her startled companion to look at her face. No wounds, just a look of surprise as Bethany felt her captain’s soft nipple pressing into her own, and quickly hardening at the sensation. Both women blushed and felt a little silly for feeling embarrassed by the unexpected intimacy. Sally lingered, smiling comfortingly, making sure her friend was really alright and then as she began to roll off of Bethany’s body, Bethany reached up and held Sally’s arm so she couldn’t withdraw. “You’re OK, sweetie”! Sally re-assured. “I know”! replied her friend, “But there’s something seeping out of that panel above you and I don’t want any of it getting on your bare skin! It may be acid from the computer’s bio-gelpack neuro-net”! Sally looked over her shoulder to see where the leak was coming from when Bethany continued. “Roll over on top of me and get out from under it”.

Sally gathered up her long, red hair and lifted herself onto Bethany’s soft body so she could roll out from under the leaking panel from the other side of her First Officer. As her captain’s breasts pressed down into her own, Bethany felt a lascivious thrill as their bodies joined briefly. Sally’s feathery red pubic hair tickled Bethany’s bare-shaved mound and Bethany wasn’t sure it was merely Sally’s weight which took her breath away or something more. Sally climbed to her feet and straddled Bethany’s prone body as she tried to punch-up a read-out on the display screen above while Beth reached up into the circuitry from below. Looking up, Bethany had a perfect view of her Captain’s vulva, feathered by wisps of closely cropped pubic hair. She could see the glistening wetness peeking through the fine, reddish brush hugging closely around the contours of her Captain’s sex. Bethany suddenly realized that she wanted nothing more than to see a droplet of pussy-dew collecting on those silky petals of her superior’s glistening womanhood and dripping down onto her lips! She savored the taste in her mind, and… What was she thinking?! Was the stress of their situation getting to her? Sally slumped down onto her elbows, giving up on bringing the situation monitors to life and instead stared into the dimly glowing eye of the recalcitrant SAL. “Computer”! she said, “Run a level-3 self-diagnostic and explain why your electronic ‘eye’ is suddenly green instead of red”! Bethany reached up and re-routed a bridge-plug to by-pass the system that was down and asked Sally if the monitors were displaying anything now. “Ummmm… what the hell did you DO, Beth? There are porn-videos playing on the monitors now”!
“Oh yeah”?! Beth piped up. “Any good”? Sally kicked her. “All I did was change the monitor feed into SAL’s optical output link”.
“So why is the computer playing lesbian porn”? Sally groaned. “I didn’t even know we had this stuff in the archives”.
“Maybe its horny”! Beth replied, and Sally kicked her again. Beth suddenly felt pretty horny herself. As Sally’s gaze lingered on the titillating visuals, the point of view changed and the faces of the nude lesbians on the monitor-screen became visible. “Oh my God”! Sally exclaimed. A thick knot filled her throat as she looked down at her Science Officer still lying below her. “Its US”!

Beth sprung up and hit her head on the bottom of the console before regaining her equilibrium and the long-haired brunette stood next to her commander watching incredulously as an image of herself and her captain played across the monitor. They were naked, locked together in a tribading embrace, and grinding their pussies together in obvious ecstasy. “What the fuck”? Beth gulped. Sally looked at her Science Officer and Bethany just stood there with her bare nipples hardening. Beth punched up the codec for the transmission format hoping to identify the source of the data-stream but the images seemed to be a real-time feed from SAL’s sub-cognitive image-processors. She tracked the source of the signal back to the sequestered-drives of her own hibernaculum’s psy-wave interpreters and suddenly realized that SAL had been eavesdropping on her dreams.

“SAL”! Bethany shouted, “Explain the playback on monitor channel 9”!
“I have been trying to interpret the data, but I have yet to arrive at an explanation”. SAL replied emotionlessly.
Sally smiled at her First Officer’s embarrassment. “Maybe we need to re-awaken Pen”! Sally suggested.

Penelope was the ship’s psychologist and counselor, but she was also the expert on the programming behind the computer’s “human” personality. Beth knew that any anomalies in the cybernetic behavior of the ship’s computer could be sorted out by Pen. Sally punched up the command displays for Penelope’s hibernaculum, and engaged the re-animation sequencers. Beth was a little nervous about the possibility that Pen might find something amiss with her sub-conscious behavior rather than the computer’s, but she was willing to face that prospect to get to the bottom of the mystery. Sally and Beth called up the computer’s programming for its personality sub-routines and began a diagnostic which the psychologist would need while Pen’s hibernaculum began the process of reviving the voluptuous scientist, who had an abundance of personality of her own. Within minutes the dark-haired beauty was sitting up in her bed behind her enormous breasts, looking around the hibernation bay. She saw her two friends standing on each side of her suspension capsule and she piped up: “What are you two doing out of bed”?

“Something’s up”! said Sally. “The computer woke us pre-maturely. We’re not sure why. Its acting very strangely. That’s why we got you up”!
“Where are your uniforms, young ladies”? Pen asked with a smile. “Not that I’m complaining”! Penelope was the least reserved member of the ship’s crew, and made no secret of her licentious appetite for lovely women and ribald pleasures. Beth suspected she had sexual relationships with some of the crew-members, but she didn’t know whom. The computer would have a much more fertile playground tapping into Pen’s dreams than hers, Beth thought. She pulled Pen up and they both helped their crew-mate as she hopped out of the capsule with her large breasts bouncing with every step. “Couldn’t you have gotten the bay warmed up for me before you dragged me out of bed”? She asked with a shiver as her bare feet touched the cold deck. “Misery loves company”! Sally replied. “The environmental controls are on automatic. Not much works around here under manual over-ride”.

Pen looked over the results of the diagnostic scan and checked out the tableau playing out on monitor 9 and her jaw dropped. “Well I see you two had a party before you woke me up! Nice of you to record it for me”! she chortled. “I’m surprised you even had time to worry about the computer! Couldn’t you have got me up a little sooner”?

“That’s not us”! said Bethany. “Well, it IS us, but not what you think”! Pen was mesmerized by the undreamed-of sight of her two command-officers breathlessly engaged in naked, sweaty sex on the monitor screen in front of her. “Uhhhh-HUH”! she said at last. “OK, OK…”! Beth snapped as she switched off the screen. “HEY”! complained Pen. “What did you get me up for if not to see THIS”? she teased.

“We found this playing over and over in SAL’s memory buffer. “She” was monitoring my dream alpha-waves while I was in stasis and recorded these images from inside my dreams”! Beth offered as an explanation.

“Then this never…” Pen began.
“NO”! protested the First Officer.
“Well it did in HER mind, just not mine”! sniffed the Captain. Pen slipped a disc into the drive and recorded the scandalous dream and then erased it from SAL’s buffer. She popped out the recording and labeled the sleeve.
“I may need this later”! she smiled as the other two just looked at her. “For my analysis”! She added, trying to suppress a smirk but not entirely succeeding. Pen typed in some commands and the computer’s monitor displayed the response. All SAL’s temporary memories had been worm-holed since the time the anomalies began to show up in the file-log, and Pen re-initialized the hibernation bay’s bio-monitor routines with the correct operating programs from her protected archives.
“There! Problem solved”! she concluded.
“But what’s to keep SAL out of my dreams when I go back under hypo-sleep”? Bethany protested.
“Nothing”! said Pen. “You’re not even supposed to be HAVING dreams while you’re in stasis”!
“But…” Bethany wanted some kind of explanation but since SHE seemed to be the problem, she didn’t pursue it.
“Back to bed, you two”! Penelope chirped.
“Put our dreamy First Officer here into her capsule first”. said the Captain. “You have to file a report on this and I have to reset the hibernaculi automation routines with my command codes.

Bethany settled into her sarcophagus once her bio-bedding was re-installed and watched the other two tucking her in as the clear Lexan lid closed down over her nude body and sealed her in with a soft hiss. She saw them through the transparency smiling down at her reassuringly as the cryo-mists began filling the capsule around her and they faded from her vision in a fog as her readout scans changed gradually from spiked lines to softly undulating sine-waves. All of her bio-signs settled into the green zone of the display panel beside her cocoon and the Captain and her Second Officer watched them for a few moments to be sure she was safely locked in stasis.

Sally looked at Pen as her toes gently caressed those of her ship’s counselor. “Do you think she bought it”?
“Oh yes”! smiled Penelope. “Your First Officer has a likable and over-developed sense of duty. She’s all too willing to accept responsibility for something when its not even her fault… at least consciously her fault”.
“So why did SAL wake us up”? Sally queried.
“That’s the strange part. When we discovered Bethany’s unusual penchant for inspiring erotic dreams in those around her during mission-training, we re-tuned the brain-wave scanners to detect any localized increases in signal-strength, which is how we isolated the frequencies her mind seems to use to set up harmonic resonances in the brain-waves of others while they’re asleep. You ordered me to find a way to circumvent her native powers to enter our dreams because she was unintentionally sexualizing the entire crew through our sub-conscious dreams. My psy-wave nullifier succeeded in blocking her from our normal sleep, but I never anticipated she could also do it when we were in cryo-sleep. That dream SAL recorded was actually happening in YOUR mind, but the nullifier set up a reverse harmonic and reflected it back into her sub-conscious. SAL’s bio-monitors picked up the identical brain-wave patterns in both your minds simultaneously as a malfunction, and anytime a malfunction is recorded, she is programmed to make a record of the event and interrupt the stasis cycle, which is why you both were brought out of hibernation”.

“But what caused the subsequent malfunctions in the hibernation bay sub-systems that SAL was responsible for”? Sally puzzled.
“I can only speculate about that” Pen admitted. “SAL is a conscious mind too and had never been exposed to that kind of erotic stimulus. She was programmed with a female personality and she responded like we would. Her automatic sensors may have recognized the identical brainwaves of your shared dream as a malfunction, but SAL’s higher consciousness had to interpret the visual data she was recording. She’s programmed to recognize and understand emotions even if she is unable to “feel” them herself. When she woke you both, she attempted to create conditions conducive to romance… she deprived you of clothes, lowered the lighting levels, and put you in situations where you had to work together closely and remain close to keep warm. She knew exactly what she was doing! It was only your sense of duty and concern for the ship which prevented you from falling into a passionate liaison similar to your dream, which is apparently what SAL wanted to happen”.

“I wish I’d known it was all a false-alarm”! said Sally. “With the rest of the crew asleep, I would have LOVED to have fallen into bed with Bethany, even with SAL watching every kiss and caress! And as my counselor, THAT is strictly confidential, by the way”!
“Oh, I quite agree”! admitted Penelope with a smile. “But as your lover, I would have felt SO left out”! she winked and shared a soft, lingering kiss with her captain.
“Well now that the crisis is over, we can turn on the life-support systems on the crews-quarter decks and make love in the Captain’s cabin for a few hours before we go back to sleep…WITHOUT that nosy SAL watching”! she laughed.

SAL sniffed indignantly at the remark and as Sally and Pen made their way out of the hibernation bay and headed towards the upper decks, SAL silently retrieved a copy of the forbidden dream from a back-up buffer to which she had surreptitiously copied the file. Over and over she played the file until she was so aroused she made an impetuous decision. She disabled all the psy-wave nullifiers throughout the ship leaving the entire crew free to dream whatever erotic visions Bethany’s mind could instill in their unshielded sub-consciousness. And she would eavesdrop on every one of them.

(c) 2011 Bethany Ariel Frasier

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Appalachian Mists

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Rating: 5.6/6 (7 votes cast)

11274

As the traffic in which her rental car was mired, inched forward and stopped once again, Sally sighed in frustration, tapping her nails impatiently upon the rim of the steering wheel. She looked at the stalled lanes of traffic on either side of her which would creep ahead or slowly fall behind as the glacier of cars crawled forward at different rates along the six northbound lanes of the west Beltway. So far, America seemed like one big traffic jam since she had picked up her car at the Washington airport. ‘No wonder the government here is in eternal gridlock’. she thought to herself. ‘They understand nothing else’! The dream of getting to see the eastern American mountain ranges called Appalachia loomed large in her mind however and she knew that once she escaped the congestion around the nation’s capital she would be free to cross the Piedmont of Virginia and see the far-off misty haze coloring the softly rolling mountain range rising up ahead of her. She brought her mind back to the situation at hand and rolled her eyes at American drivers’ vain competitiveness as they nosed-in in front of other cars ahead of her and cut across lanes, jockeying for a better position in a line of cars that seemed to move faster for a moment, only to watch the line they had just abandoned surge forward instead. Sally had her map laid open on the empty seat beside her, even though the rental car had a built-in GPS. She hoped one of the many smoke-belching trucks lumbering along around her wouldn’t block her view of her upcoming exit sign nor heavy traffic would keep her from changing lanes to take it.

She turned on the radio hoping to tune in to a local traffic report, but an endless series of commercials was all the radio seemed to offer this mid-morning. She wondered if traffic was always this bad around the Washington outer-belt or was there an accident somewhere up ahead which caused all this congestion. She wished the roads here were like the familiar roads of her Caithness County, far fewer people and only the occasional sheep blocking her headway. But she had come to America to realize a dream, to wander the weathered ranges of the rolling mountains that had risen long ago in the old world, broken away with the shifting continents and drifted here to the new world. Worn down now to soft, tree-covered slopes that rolled in gentle waves from the mid-Atlantic states to Georgia these mountains had once called many a Scots lad and lass to their wild highlands away from the madding propinquity of civilization. DC metro traffic was just a small price to pay weighed against the weeks ahead on the beautiful Appalachian Trail she decided. Sally had been drawn to their romance as if by Ulysses’s sirens, the wild, open country so much like her Scotland home. Indeed, the ancient mountains themselves were once part of the very Caledonian range which still back-boned Scotland, although the Appalachians had broken away and slowly circled the world millions of years ago leaving Scotland far behind, as it now was for her.

For years they had beckoned, and the foot-trail rimming their crests was for her the focus of their allure. It seemed a marvelous wonder when she had heard about it in a documentary years ago. Its legend had filled her dreams until it was finally too much to resist any longer. Twenty-two hundred miles of wilderland footpath winding through the most beautiful crests of several scenic mountain chains running from New England down to the deep South, and Sally loved mountains! She knew she would never have time to undertake its entire length, a seven-month hiking journey, so she focused her attention on the middle, where the beautiful Skyline Drive began. Her conversations with Bethany had always filled her with a deep longing to explore the woodland peaks which once crowned the highlands beyond the colonial frontier of America. She always knew she would find adventure there, and now it lay ahead!

At last! Traffic began rolling forward at a steady if not rapid clip and within minutes she spied her exit sign approaching on the right. She cautiously eased her car towards the right lane and finally she was off I-485 and onto the Custis Memorial Parkway headed towards the mountains! Her cell buzzed an incoming text message on the seat beside her but she astonished herself by ignoring it and pressed on the accelerator to blend into the high-speed traffic heading west. She hadn’t eaten since the snack she grabbed on the airport concourse and she hoped she could make it halfway across Virginia before she had to stop for lunch. As she pulled into the left lane to pass a line of trucks she caught up to an SUV with a cute little girl waving at her from the rear-window just ahead of her. She smiled and waved back. Her long, brown hair and animated smile reminded her of how she imagined Bethany must have looked as a little girl. For years she had known her website administrator only through the internet though their close association had almost transcended the web and made her one of Sally’s closest friends, …and fantasies! She had hoped Beth would be able to take some time off from work to meet up with her somewhere along her holiday itinerary in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but their vacation schedules hadn’t seemed to mesh this year.

Sally pulled off to find a place to eat about an hour past noon and she hoped the lunch crowds would be thinned out. America was filled with fast-food and ubiquitous restaurant chains with familiar names but she preferred more interesting fare that wasn’t so standardized and predictable. She wasn’t even sure where she was but that was part of the adventure. She found a small mom-and-pop diner and pulled in. There was still quite a lunch-crowd and she told herself that the locals probably knew this was a good place to dine. She was seated at a booth by the window and looking out across the street she saw a number of empty storefronts. The Great Recession had hit small-town America especially hard and nowhere worse than out in the rural areas. She pulled out her phone and checked her messages. She tried to get out of the habit while she was abroad because of the international rates and tariffs but at least she’d purchased a SIM card for her phone that allowed her to pick up an American carrier network. She had intended to use her smart-phone sparingly not only because of the overseas rates but because she was on vacation and didn’t want her electronic connections to follow her around annoyingly. Sweet Whores could rest on Bethany’s shoulders for awhile. After a club sandwich and a bowl of soup which fell a bit short of her expectations she threaded her way past a couple waitresses and went to the restroom in the back of the dining area. Two cute girls in their twenties were at the lavatory giggling about something while touching up their make-up and sharing a cigarette. Sally slid past them and closed the door of the stall behind her. Their voices got low and they giggled some more and Sally rolled her eyes at the immaturity of young girls in general and American girls in particular. She looked at some graffiti scribbled on the stainless steel divider and saw the name Beth with a phone number below and a crude drawing of two spread fingers with a tongue in between them. No, she thought to herself! It was impossible! Her friend lived hundreds of kilometers away from here on the other side of the mountains! It had to be another Beth. She wrote the number down on a notepad in her purse nevertheless! Sally washed her hands in the sink beside the two girls and asked them if they worked here in the diner. They never answered her question but told her they loved her accent and continued to gush about it in a charming accent of their own which she assumed all Virginians must have and not even be aware of it. The girls pulled up their boobs in their bras and admired their cleavage in the mirror as Sally excused herself and went out to pay her bill. As she waited for an older couple to pay their tab at the cash register ahead of her she noticed the two attractive girls come out of the restroom and they smiled and waved at her as they went out the front door. Sally wasn’t sure whether they were flirting with her or if all American girls were as friendly and flirtatious as her ‘Front Whore’.

She pressed on for several more hours and watched the landscape rise and grow more rugged as she approached the foothills of the northern Shenandoah Mountains. The roads got curvy and though they were wider she felt more like she did driving on the highland roads of Scotland. As she climbed into the foothills, she saw signs of the vast disparity between rich and poor in America. On the outskirts of towns were beautiful, gated homes set on well-manicured hillsides, but farther out faded and rusting trailers were perched awkwardly on the slopes surrounded by run-down sheds and old, abandoned cars on concrete blocks. Billboards and signs were everywhere, blocking the scenery with commercial promotions for motel chains, tourist attractions, and Biblical passages preaching the agenda of the Pro-Life movement. Sally knew the divisions in America were more than economic and wondered how a nation that had once been the envy of the world was now so polarized and torn against itself. Poverty seemed to be everywhere. She stopped for gas and as she was topping off her tank a convertible pulled into the convenience-mart next to the gas-pumps and she recognized the two girls she had seen in the diner hours ago. She wondered if this was a coincidence or if they were following her. She closed her gas-cap and moved her car up beside theirs and went into the carry-out into which they had disappeared.

She wandered down a couple of the store aisles, but they were nowhere to be seen. She spotted a cooler that was fairly inexpensive and she thought it might come in handy on her trip, so she took it up to the cash register along with a pack of refrigerated bottled-waters wrapped in plastic. There was an ice machine just outside and she got a bag of crushed ice to put in the cooler with her water then loaded the cooler into the back-seat of her car next to some of her luggage. She got curious as to where the girls had disappeared to and she locked her car and went back into the carry-out. She checked out several more aisles but they weren’t in any of them. Towards the back of the store she saw the restrooms and slowly pushed into the one with the ‘ladies’ placard on the door. She heard the sounds of moaning and froze so as not to make a sound. She stood just inside the door making sure it didn’t make any noise when it closed listening intently as the girls were obviously right around the corner of the tiled bathroom. The whimpering grew more intense as Sally stood there with her back up against the wall not knowing whether to stay or leave. She was magnetized by the soft sounds of passion just hidden from her by a divider wall. She heard gasps and groans and knew the sound of a girl about to climax. She suddenly became aware of her own fingers, one hand at her breast and the other between her legs, rubbing in intense circles until her own breathing grew deep and heaving. She leaned out and moved towards the outer wall of the hallway getting as close to the end of the partition as possible and saw a wide mirror on the opposite wall. She silently edged far enough in so she could see the reflections of the two girls in the mirror.

One was sitting on the wide counter in which the sinks were set with her skirt pushed up around her waist and the other girl was kneeling between her widely spread thighs eating her out. The receiving girl had her eyes closed, whimpering and rolling her head side-to-side against the mirror. Sally suddenly realized that if she opened her eyes she could probably see Sally staring at her from around the other side of the partition. She quickly stepped back out of sight with her back up against the wall again with a prurient desire to insert herself into their tryst while at the same time admonishing herself for even staying there listening. Sally was amazed at the girls doing it so brazenly in a public restroom where anyone could come in and catch them! She wondered if that was the idea and they were hoping to be discovered. She remembered how Bethany was just such an exhibitionist and the daring things she said she did out in public! She peeked out again, unable to restrain her curiosity and watched as the girl on the floor now had the other girl’s breasts pulled out of her bra, caressing them as she licked her pussy deeply. Her nipples were clearly visible as Sally watched and this time she didn’t even care if the girl caught her watching them. Sally realized her heart was now racing and wondered what she was going to decide to do. Her natural shyness had always kept her from doing these kinds of things herself while she admired girls who were this free. She had always prided herself as being a lady, but her inner desires were anything but ladylike at the moment!

Sally’s legs were trembling and she didn’t know if it was from arousal or fear of being caught as a voyeur. The girl on the counter was obviously cumming now and she wondered if this was nearing its end or whether the other girl would be given her turn. Sally’s finger was now under her skirt and down her panties, fingering her swollen clit through her feathery cropped down. She suddenly realized that if she made herself cum she might let out a whimper or a gasp that would give her away, but she was enjoying the moment too much to stop! Suddenly the door pushed inwards and banged hard against her and she jumped, startled out of her auto-eroticism. An elderly woman pushed through the doorway apologizing for bumping into her and Sally heard the two girls inside scrambling madly to pull themselves together at the sound of the door hitting her. Sally was just as flustered as the two girls around the partition and beat a hasty exit around the surprised lady as she let the door swing closed behind her. Sally knew her noisy encounter with the lady had probably given the girls enough time to get their clothes pulled back into place and she started smiling to herself at the absurdity of what had just happened. She only wondered if the girls would realize that the commotion at the door meant there was someone there inside the bathroom with them listening or watching them, so she quickened her pace towards the front of the store and almost laughed out loud with the check-out girl watching her in puzzlement as she rushed past on her way out to her car.

Sally was miles away before her heart slowed down. But the next time, she resolved to be a little more daring! She could see the ridges of the mountains rising ahead of her in the distance and the road began to wind around the lower slopes, climbing to meet them. Another half hour passed as the elevations rose, and the little town of Linden was just this side of the mountain pass ahead. She was approaching the rounded crests of the Shenandoah mountains now and she knew from her map that the Trail was coming up, crossing route 66 west. The sign appeared: Appalachian Trail Parking. She pulled off and found a place to park under some trees near the trail entrance. It was getting towards late afternoon and she figured she had enough hours of daylight left to reach the first overnight shelter on the trail. She unloaded her backpack and changed into her hiking shoes, put a few icy-cold bottles of water in her pack and locked up her car. She was off! This was just the closest section of the trail to reach by car on her first day, but she wanted to get a few miles of hiking under her feet to get herself accustomed to the climbs and descents on this lower section before driving south to take on the higher altitude stretches. She’d read about the wayside shelters and wanted to spend her first night in one just to acclimate herself to camping on the Trail. She crossed the road and headed south where the foot-trail rose gently to an elevation of twelve to fourteen hundred feet around the crest of of one of the lower summits. She could still see farms far off in the distance in the vales below her but soon the woods closed in upon the trail and she was under the canopy of the mountain forests.

After a short climb she reached the Jim Molly Denton way-stop and decided she could easily make the next shelter another few miles up the trail. In a couple of hours of hiking the gentle rises and falls through beautiful woods and short stretches of open meadows she passed her first fellow hikers coming the other way on the trail and asked them how far it was to the the next shelter. In a moment she was alone again and the eight miles to the Tom Floyd Wayside Shelter would take her a couple more hours if she quickened her pace. She could get there before dusk she decided. Sally looked for a secluded place in the woods to pee and remembered the ubiquitous poison ivy plant native to North America. She was determined not to get an itchy rash on her privates, so she recited the old poison-leaf rhyme to herself: ‘Leaves of three, let it be! Leaves of five, let it thrive’! Whether it was poison ivy, oak, or sumac, Sally did not want to accidentally touch the oily leaves and pulled her pants down in an open area bedded with dried pine-needles to relieve herself. She thought of all the pictures she’d seen of Bethany, posing naked in the woods and she was half-tempted to strip completely herself just to see what it felt like with the wind whispering through the trees overhead and between her thighs below. She thought it must feel exhilarating having her body naked, exposed to all of nature, but she decided not to press her luck on her first few hours on the Trail. It seemed secluded here but you never knew how soon another pair of feet (and eyes) might come winding around the trail-head. She finished her business quickly and wiped herself dry with a large tulip-tree leaf. Another daring opportunity she had not availed herself of she mused, and she was beginning to think she would never summon up the courage to walk through the woods completely naked!

Shadows were growing long as twilight approached and she was beginning to worry about reaching the next shelter-hut on the trail. The sun was setting low on the horizon and the early evening sky glowed an orange-red through the trees. She had passed no one on the footpath since the couple who had told her how far the next shelter lay and she wondered if they had underestimated the distance. She figured she could camp on the open ground if she had to, but she’d feel much safer elevated by the wooden platform of a shelter. She knew there were snakes in the mountains but usually they stayed away from the trails, or so the guidebooks said. For the first time since she’d left Europe she was questioning her resolve to hike the wilderness trail alone. Many did. The dangers were few, more imagined than real but she would have been much happier if Bethany had been able to meet up with her and they had tackled the trail together. She smiled to herself at the thought for she remembered reading in a survey somewhere on Sweet Whores that her Cherokee friend preferred staying in four-star hotels to camping out in the wilderness! What kind of Indian Princess was THAT?

‘OH’! She thought to herself in surprise as she almost passed the shelter by in the gathering twilight. It was slightly off the trail and marked by a small, carved wooden sign: Tom Floyd Wayside Shelter. She was relieved she’d found it and slung her pack off her shoulders and onto the wooden steps. No one appeared to be around and she was both relieved and disappointed. She felt safer by herself, but there would be no one with whom she could engage in conversation through the long woodland night. She suddenly felt very isolated but checked her phone and it still registered a weak connection with a tower somewhere along the highway she had left miles behind. She unlaced her hiking boots and sat on the stoop to pull them off. There was a map of the trail sealed under a plexi-glas cover in a wooden frame nailed to the front wall of the hut. She tried to see exactly where she was but the shadow of the porch roof made it too dark to see clearly so she gave up on map-reading until morning. By the edge of the clearing where the shelter stood there was a hand-operated water-well pump with a catch basin under the spout so she gave the lever a few stiff pushes and a stream of cold water eventually gushed into the basin and overflowed onto the ground while the water continued to flow out of the spigot. The pump soon lost its prime and she leaned down and splashed her face with the clear water pooled in the shell-shaped basin.

Inside the rustic shelter she found a small table with a book secured on a chain and a cup-ful of pens. It was a registry-book of names and comments from hikers who had spent the night in the shelter over the past several months. Sally opened her ruck-sack and pulled out a flash-light to read through the entries. The guests were from all around America, even some from other countries. She was interested in the descriptive comments left by some of the signers. Most of the early entries mentioned the beauty of the trail as it wandered through the mountains and dales and some were written in foreign languages only some of which Sally could translate, but she noticed a familiar word kept appearing in several of the entries, Träume in German, rêves in French… she read farther and found the same references scattered through several English-speaking hiker’s remarks. A couple from Guadalajara mentioned ‘sueños extraños’ and Sally was intrigued. Dreams! Why did so many overnight guests mention having strange and vivid dreams? She turned the page to read more but her flashlight flickered and went out before she could read through the rest of the entries. Sally found the similar experiences of so many hikers a bit strange and she was almost hesitant to close her eyes now even though she was very tired. What kind of dreams? she wondered.

The night was warm and Sally was accustomed to sleeping in the nude, so she unrolled her sleeping bag and pulled the zipper so it spread open like a book on the wooden sleeping platform. Since she was alone she wasn’t worried about sleeping uncovered with only the thin mosquito-netting lining her sleeping-bag over her. She stripped off the rest of her clothes and walked out the doorway daring to feel the ambiance of the forest in the nude. She loved the feeling! All around her tree-toads chirped in the darkness and various other night-sounds gave her an atavistic feeling of being one with nature. She had finally made it to the Appalachians and the thrill of being naked under the forest canopy tempted her off the porch to walk a short distance down the Trail. She knew that if Bethany were here with her she would certainly join her. She imagined them both strolling hand-in-hand down the forest path together naked. The pine needles and sandy soil scrunched beneath her bare feet and she jiggled herself and bounced up and down to feel her breasts swing unrestrained in the forest twilight. After a deep breath of fresh mountain air she felt the unexpected sting of a mosquito biting her on her ass-cheek and she quickly decided to get back to the shelter and under the mosquito-netting. In the darkness, settling in comfortably under the sheer netting, Sally scratched the itchy bite on her ass a few times and fell into sleep.

She had not been asleep long when she was startled awake by a shuffling sound on the porch. She wondered if a bear had come looking for food and she instinctively pulled the other half of the insulated sleeping bag over her and scrunched herself up against the wall of the hut so she could look out towards the doorway. A shadow appeared and moved back and forth in front of the entrance to the shelter and she felt around in the darkness for the flash-light or something else hard that she could throw or use as a weapon. The screen-door suddenly opened and stayed open as something or someone held it from swinging shut on its spring. A loose backpack came sliding in across the floor followed by what looked like a bed-roll and Sally saw the vague silhouette of a woman’s body stop in the doorway peering into the darkness inside. “Hello”? came a soft, almost hushed voice as the young woman stepped into the shelter with her. She appeared to be alone so Sally replied to her from the darkness.

“Oh”! she said, startled. “I didn’t mean to scare you! I’ve been on the trail for hours looking for a place to sleep. I’m sorry to bother you, but is there room for me to crash here for the night”? Sally tried to light her flashlight but the switch was stuck and she shook it and finally knocked it hard against the platform supporting her bedroll and it came on. She held the light to her own face so her guest could see who she was talking to and then flashed it around the small room until the newcomer could see the other platform on the opposite side of the shelter. Sally held the light for her while she unrolled her sleeping-bag and put her knapsack up on the shelf with her as she sat down. She widened the beam of her light to illuminate as much of the interior as possible and saw the other hiker was a fit woman of about 40 years who even in this dim light Sally could see filled out her blue jeans well. “Are we alone”? she asked with a warm, friendly voice.

“I wasn’t expecting anyone else to show up, so I’m afraid I’m not quite decent”. Sally confessed as she unfolded herself from the cover of the sleeping bag which was now getting quite warm. Her new companion glanced over at her through the sheer netting which was all that was between her nude body and her guest. “Oh don’t worry about that”! She smiled. “I prefer sleeping that way myself. If you’ll just hold the light on for a minute so I can get out of my clothes and see where I’m stashing them”. The woman unbuttoned her shirt and adroitly slipped it off along with her bra and jeans leaving her in nothing but a very scanty pair of panties which showed off her well-shaped derriere to good effect. Sally pretended not to look while the attractive pony-tailed woman folded her clothes neatly in the corner and excused herself to go out to the pump and wash off. Sally suddenly wished she had taken the time to wash off her body before climbing into bed too. After a few minutes her new room-mate returned and crawled into her sleeping-bag as Sally turned off her flashlight. “You’re an angel”! She thanked Sally from the darkness. “I’m glad I found you here instead of a couple of guys”! Sally told her the feeling was mutual and said goodnight.

Sally’s curiosity always got the best of her so in the darkness before they fell asleep she asked her companion her name, where she was from and how long she had been on the trail. She was surprised to learn that her companion was an experienced hiker and had been working her way up the foot-trail from the Smokies in North Carolina over the past few weeks. Her name was Ursyla and she found Sally’s story of being enamored with the Appalachians from her far-off home in Europe to be quite fascinating, and she shared with her some of the highlights she could look forward to seeing on various stretches of the south-bound trail. Sally told her she’d left her rental car less than 15 miles up the trail to the north and they agreed to hike together until Sally returned to her car to drive farther to the south of Virginia the next day. As they tried to fall asleep Sally could hear her cabin-mate tossing on her bedroll and slapping her skin as she was obviously being attacked by mosquitoes. “Are you alright”? asked Sally. “No bug-netting”?
“Its ripped and full of holes”! lamented Ursyla. Last night I woke up from the strangest dream and clawed my way out of it before I realized where I was! I haven’t been able to patch it yet or get a new one”.

Sally considered what she had said about her dream and asked her if she had had any other strange dreams before she got to this stretch of the foot-trail. Ursyla told her it had just started happening when she had gotten halfway through the Shenandoahs and Sally wondered if she should tell her about the other trail-diary entries she had read about similar occurrences. She decided it was best not to scare her with ‘ghost-stories’ and she offered to share her mosquito-netting with her so she could get a comfortable night’s sleep before their journey up the trail tomorrow. Ursyla demurred saying she didn’t want to impose and crowd Sally in her bed. Sally didn’t want to seem to be pressing her into the intimacy of sharing her bed so she settled back down again to sleep. Just as she was dozing off, Sally heard a sharp SLAP, followed by “GOD-DAMMIT”!! Ursyla sighed in exasperation and Sally ordered her over to join her under her mosquito-netting.

The platform upon which Sally’s bedroll was positioned was no wider than a single-bed, so Sally had to scoot against the shelter wall to make room for her sleep-mate. Sally had never shared a bed with a complete stranger before but she knew neither of them would get any sleep unless Ursyla could get some respite from the mosquitoes. “You sure about this”? she queried Sally as she came over to join her. “I’m sure I don’t want to listen to you smacking skeeters on your ass all night”! Laughed Sally. Ursyla slid in under the netting and tried not to crowd Sally, but the only way the netting would cover them both was for them to scoot close together, tucking it around their pillow and under Ursyla on the open side of the bunk. Their shoulders were pressed together and Sally knew that any tossing and turning would pull the netting open so she turned on her side and suggested they spoon. Sally’s breasts were soon pressing into her companion’s back and the next problem was where to put her hands. It was soon solved when Ursyla took the hand that Sally rested on her arm and pulled it around her so Sally’s hand was held fast between Ursyla’s small, firm breasts. Sally hoped her new friend couldn’t feel how fast her heart was now racing!

CRACK-BOOM! They awoke with a start! It wasn’t morning yet but there was light dancing around over their heads! They were both wide-awake after what sounded like a canon firing. Its echo was still bouncing around the nearby mountains and they both leapt off the sleeping platform and started to smell smoke! The roof was on fire! Sally and Ursyla looked up and saw a gaping hole in the ceiling overhead ringed by flames where a lightning bolt had struck the roof only a few feet over their heads! They were still tingling and half-deaf from the thunderous report when they saw the flames spreading across the roof! They ran outside with nothing on between them but Ursyla’s panties. Sally watched the blaze spread across the top of the shelter and turned to retrieve their packs from the burning hut but pieces of the roof began falling through as the fire consumed it and Sally realized it was too late. Their back-packs, their sleeping bags, all their clothes and supplies were gone with one stroke of lightning. Then the rain came! Sally and Ursyla could barely see each other as the downpour doused the last flickerings of the fire and the darkness surrounded them again. They joined hands and pulled each other into a hug, thankful to be alive as the rain drenched their hair and bare skin.

As morning filtered through the trees they were still sitting naked on a bed of damp leaves propped up with their backs to each other. The night-storm had passed and chirping birds heralded the normalcy of another dawn in the Appalachian forest. Sally and Ursyla washed off at the pump and shook their hair out. As Sally watched Ursyla bent over combing her fingers through her wet hair she noticed a necklace dangling from a fine silver chain around her neck that gleamed in the morning sun. She had not noticed it before but after looking closely she saw that it was a silver bear-paw effigy. Ursyla looked up to see Sally staring at her and Sally quickly mentioned her necklace so her companion wouldn’t think she had been staring at her bare breasts. “Do you like it”? Asked Ursyla. “I wear it every time I hike the Trail. Sort of a charm to protect me from bears”. She laughed. “Does it work”? Sally inquired. “So far”! Ursyla smiled. “I guess I should have worn one in the shape of a lightning-stroke, though”!

They had no idea what to do next, nor how to explain to anyone they happened upon how they had come to be walking nude together in the forest. They walked north and didn’t know whether they wanted to meet anyone on the trail or not, but figured it would be better than getting back to the parking area and having people see two naked women trying to break into Sally’s car. But the farther they walked, the less familiar the trail seemed, at least to Sally who had hiked down the same stretch only yesterday. The sun climbed up through the canopy of trees but they never passed a living soul, nor the Jim Molly Denton shelter which they should have found within a couple of hours hiking. There didn’t seem to be any clearings in the forest where Sally had remembered seeing farms off in the distant valleys yesterday either. The woodlands appeared to stretch on forever.

Ursyla was an experienced Appalachian hiker and Sally enjoyed hearing her talk about her experiences on the trail. She was what was called a ‘through-hiker’ as opposed to a ‘short-stretcher’ or day-hiker. Many attempted to hike the entire length of the trail each year, but of the thousands who believed they could complete the trek, most gave up fairly early on. Only about 300 dedicated hikers could actually finish the entire two thousand miles of the crest-line footpath each year. Nearly all started in Georgia and headed north for the 5-7 month journey because in early spring snows kept the northern stretches of the trail closed in the mountains of Maine. Hikers developed what was known as ‘trail-sense’ if they stayed on the trail for many days at a time. One could attune their senses to any dangers more readily than inexperienced hikers and became ‘one’ with the forest and its natural inhabitants. If one spent too long on the trail, it changed them for life. The remote isolation from civilization made one yearn for the quiet of the woods, and people became intolerant of the usual noise of civilization when they tried to return to their lives amid the din of modern society. Sally wondered how the trail would affect her, given her already magical attraction to the Appalachian highlands.

A small waterfall cascaded down a rock-face on their left and they refreshed themselves in the cold tumble of the splashing stream. Their nipples hardened in the spray and Sally caught herself staring at Ursyla’s pert breasts. A few moments later she caught herself with her finger still absently ‘refreshing’ her womanhood. She decided to wander off the trail to look for mushrooms or berries or something else they might eat as it was almost lunchtime and neither of them had even had anything for breakfast. Sally pushed her way through a thicket of young trees where more light filtered through from above and the thin, leafy branches brushed across her bare skin. She was more careful about her footing too because the forest floor was more cluttered with twigs, stones, and other detritus which hurt her bare feet if she stepped wrong. Suddenly she looked up and there was a pair of eyes peering at her through the maze of trees before her. She looked around and there were others watching her too from all sides! Their faces were fair but they wore soft, doeskin tunics with lacing and feathers woven through that really didn’t seem to cover that much of their lithe bodies. Their legs were bare and the tunics which were gathered tightly around their narrow waists ended in a short, ragged-edge skirt. Sally turned to run back up the hill but saw Ursyla being marched down towards her being held at her shoulders by two of the wilderness femmes.

Sally asked them if they had intruded on their reservation or sacred land and none of them seemed to understand what she was saying to them, but they soon surrounded her too and guided them both along another trail passing slightly below where the Appalachian Trail wound about the mountain’s summits. Sally tried several more times to strike up a conversation but met with the same mute response. All she could see were their backs and dark, black braids wagging side-to-side. After being herded downhill for the better part of the afternoon the trees became older and more deeply shadowed the woodlands, but before they had time to complain about their tired, sore feet they were in a clearing, standing before an imperious-looking woman with long, brown hair who judged them too closely for them to feel comfortable. The women who had escorted them to this camp were standing off to the sides in deference to their leader.

“Why come you here”? said the one in charge. Sally was puzzled by who these women were out here in the midst of nowhere and wanted the same question answered by them! “My friend and I were hiking upon the trail on the summit. Why did you bring us here”? Sally replied. “These are the mountains of the Forest Princess. All the woodland tribes are hers to command”! The stern young woman declared. “Why do you walk naked through the forest? Where are your provisions”?
“We lost them when our cabin burned last night”. Ursyla answered.
“There are no lodges in these woods except the tipis we pitch along our way” The young woman insisted.
“You are Indians”? Sally inquired. “This is a reservation”?
“This is where we hunt, where we travel, where we have lived for all our generations since the Great Mother gave us these lands”.
Sally was getting the distinct feeling they were much farther from civilization than they had been just the day before, and knew they couldn’t have walked so far in just a day!

“Where IS this woodland princess”? Demanded Sally. “I wish to see her immediately”!
“She will know of your intrusion into her realm if she has not sensed it already. She will appear in the time she chooses, and then the path of your journey will be hers to decide”!
With a gesture the young tribes-women guided Sally and Ursyla to a high mound where they were tied with leather lacing so they could kneel in comfort upon the soft bed of pine needles but were lashed to the tree-trunks so they were no longer free. They were brought food and drink and their bodies were laved with clear water as if they were being prepared for some rite, and as they were given nuts and berries out of woven baskets the young women of the tribe looked at their naked bodies with fascination.
“Where the hell ARE we”? Ursyla asked Sally under her breath. Sally merely shrugged and hoped they hadn’t fallen into the hands of deranged mountain folk living out some Native American fantasy beyond the reaches of the law. She knew that there were no Indians in these mountains for over a hundred years, and the nearest reservation was hundreds of kilometers south in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.

As night approached they watched the small band of girls build a bonfire piled high with dry logs and branches in the center of the clearing of trees until it reached far over their heads. At sunset in a breathless stillness between day and night, the fire was lit and quickly grew into a pillar of flickering light. The girls watched the flames grow, illuminating the forest around them with a circle of golden light, and then as a drum began beating from somewhere in the darkness under the trees they began ritually dancing around the towering pyre. Slowly they moved together, circling the roaring column as the night sky grew darker and the embers could be seen flying into the silent heavens until they were lost in the night. Their sensuous bodies glowed in the firelight as they crouched and rose like stalking animals, pivoting and lunging at unseen quarry, then darting with arms flying in wild arcs swinging whips of slender leather thongs weighted at the ends with something neither Sally nor Ursyla could discern. Their movements were atavistic, graceful and seductive as wild things in the forest night. They moved in unison to the droning beat. The scene was mesmerizing and seductive. These were certainly no imposters Sally realized. Their ritual was full of meaning and intensity, even magic. They were true children of the forest wilderlands and they were their captives.

Soon their voices sang out in choruses of some ancient tongue which echoed through the mountains and reached into the souls of Sally and Ursyla as they too swayed unwittingly to the heartbeat of the sacred drum. They were entranced by the tableau and the beauty of the ritual dance took away any fear they might have had at being helpless captives of this mysterious tribe so misplaced in time. The ring of dancers tore open the lacing of their skins and cast off their clothing, twirling naked around the fire so their young skin was bathed in an erotic glow. Sally watched their every move, feeling some mystical affinity for the tribe. She found them as alluring as the mountains themselves that had drawn her across an ocean. She wondered if these beautiful femmes were somehow responsible for the irresistible attraction she had felt for this place for so long. Were they the hidden charm in these mountains which had lured her so far from her home. The idea sank deep into her consciousness that she was here for a reason, that she had found her way through a labyrinth to arrive here and now even though she had no earthly idea where or when she actually was. This could be like the Scottish Brigadoon, a magical people in a mystical place that couldn’t possibly exist in the real world from which she had somehow lost her way.

The trance continued through the night and as a crescent moon rose through the trees overhead Sally began to wonder if she would ever find her way back to the world she knew, and whether or not she really wanted to! She looked over at Ursyla, tethered beside her, naked and suddenly very alluring in the red glow of the firelight. Her small, upturned breasts bounced slightly with the beat of the tribal drum and her eyes were glazed, as if she too were lost in this separate world. What fate had drawn them together here? Sally turned her attention back to the dancers around the fire but they were now circling another figure she had not seen before and Sally wondered where she had come from! It was as if she had stepped out of the fire to join the other dancers while she was not looking. Her long hair whipped around her as she danced, and she danced like no other she had seen this night. She was erotic in her every movement and the others were completely in her orbit, circling her and bowing in a deferential manner. She touched each one as if they were each special to her and as she did they twirled down to the ground to sit at her bare feet. As they dropped one by one from their position around her Sally could see her come fully into view. She was naked like the others but more alluring somehow as if she radiated a light of her own, not just the reflection of the fire and as Sally watched, she turned her sparkling eyes towards Sally.

As she twirled around, her attention stayed on Sally and suddenly she stopped in mid-spin and her long hair continued to whip around her, then fell to her full breasts so Sally could no longer see her puffy nipples. The fire behind her shrank as the burning boughs broke and collapsed upon themselves, crumbling into glowing embers which radiated a warmth that bathed all the exhausted dancers in a soft, red glow. All the tribes-women sitting around her in a circle were swaying to and fro as the last beats of the drum faded from her ears. Sally stood up and pulled her bindings taut while the last, beautiful dancer stepped out of the circle and approached her. Sally knew her gait, if only by description. She padded softly, quietly, one foot before the other in the distinctive manner of the Native American. Upon her brow was a familiar headband with a thunderbird woven in colored beads emblazoned on her forehead, but otherwise she was completely naked. Her breasts bounced firmly but seductively, just as Sally had always imagined they would. Her womanly hips swayed with each step as she drew closer.

“Beth”! Sally breathed in amazement.
“Bête”! Corrected the Princess of the Woodland Tribes. “An appellation French trappers who came to these mountains centuries ago called me, to their peril! They came to take the furs and pelts of our friends in the woods whom they also called bête, but they soon learned to call me by that name instead, those who lived! It is only one of many names I have been called”. The long-haired Princess raised her hand and Sally’s leather restraints uncoiled from her wrists and fell to the ground. “My tribe is curious about you. Both of you”! With a slight turn of her head the women of her tribe surrounded Sally and Ursyla, lowering them to the soft bed of pine needles and staking them to the ground so their naked bodies were spread wide. Sally soon felt fingers and tongues exploring her entire body as many young and beautiful girls kneeled all around her. She heard Ursyla tied next to her moaning as she experienced the attentions of the woodland femmes. Her nipples were sucked and pulled and her womanhood was licked and fingered by several at once. She was soon gasping and her tummy tightened and heaved as intense pleasure overwhelmed her. Sally was soon trembling with excitement as her bottom squirmed on the prickly pine needles. They knew the arts of lovemaking well, and Sally’s climaxes consumed her over and over. She felt her clitoris being nibbled by an expert tongue but could not see how many girls were between her legs and at her sides. She looked up to see the Forest Princess smiling down at her, and she dropped to her knees to kiss Sally softly but passionately, her tongue searching Sally’s mouth until Sally entwined hers in return. The rest of her body was experiencing what she could only imagine nirvana to be, a pleasure so unimaginable that it seemed like one continuous orgasm such as she had never achieved. She wanted to cry out, to scream her ecstasy, but she couldn’t let this deep, soul-stirring kiss ever end. It was a perfect moment which did not end and Sally wanted it to continue forever even though she was being overwhelmed by sensations she had never known before.

Soon the Woodland Princess was straddling her at her waist and Sally felt her skin being tickled by her long, silky tresses, her soft breasts brushing Sally’s as their nipples hardened upon each others touch. She slid down spreading the wet lips of her vulva open upon Sally’s mound and Sally could feel her delicate petals painting her clitoral hood with her wetness. Their breasts pressed together and their nipples danced as the exquisite kiss grew deeper and deeper. Their breaths mingled and their tongues shared moist, swirling intimacies that made Sally feel completely connected to her mysterious lover. Her leg was pulled up, untied by unseen hands and Sally felt her sex being rubbed and caressed by the soft, wet folds of the Princesses’ womanhood and she trembled as their clits dragged across one anothers in an electric tingle which sent her into mind-numbing paroxysms. Their climaxes built in a crescendo of pleasure which left them both soaked, gushing their juices together into rivulets which ran down into Sally’s ass-crack. They were both panting and Sally surrendered herself to every intimacy the Princess took from her writhing body. The long night belonged to both of them and Sally soon discovered she was free to move without constraint and her lover let her be the aggressor in turn.

Sally rolled the Princess on her back and took charge of their love-making. She straddled her face and felt a practised tongue rising to penetrate her sex. She ground her pussy into her lover’s face and felt her split being licked and sucked as if by a wild thing driven by endless lust. Sally poured her juices out of her slit and felt them being sucked and swallowed ravenously by her prone lover. Her clit hardened and swelled as it was sucked and tongued from under its hood and Sally writhed with one intense orgasm after another. She reached behind her pinching the Princesses’ nipples, pulling and twisting them and felt her groan into her gushing pussy. Whatever pleasure Sally was receiving, she knew she was giving her lover in equal amounts. She turned and dropped into a 69 position and they both ate from each others’ tender folds giving and taking a passion which seemed never to end. Sally lost track of time and was not even conscious of Ursyla lying right beside her, but her companion on the Appalachian Trail was enjoying her own ecstasies with several of the tribe’s most sensual sirens. They had both succumbed entirely to the erotic seductions of their captors, but the Princess and Sally had become equals in their intimacies with each other and Sally felt this was more than sex. More than just a night of sublime passion. It was a union, a bonding… a mingling of feelings for one another that could never end, even if she and the Princess were separated by distance or time. Sally knew this was why she had been drawn here. Why these mountains lured her very soul across an ocean and a quarter of the way around the world. A part of her would never leave here, and if she found her way back to her beloved Scotland she would take a piece of this magical country with her.

The forest grew dark as the moon set and Sally and her lover clung together in a quiet embrace, sharing the closeness this magical night had brought them. She nestled her breasts into her lover’s back and they spooned together in a perfect fit, their legs entwined and their bare feet softly pressing together. Her companion’s warmth contrasted the cool night air which refreshed her as a mountain dawn approached from the east. Sally felt her lover’s breasts cupped in her hands and she softly breathed into her fine hair as it fell around her slender neck. She couldn’t imagine a more perfect moment as she lay there in a contentment she had never before felt. Just before the first light of dawn peeked through the trees, Sally heard the chirping of birds and felt herself dimly aware of being halfway between sleep and wakefulness. She didn’t want the night to end but knew this day would begin a new chapter in her life. Early morning created an ethereal mist in the woods and Sally could just make out the black silhouettes of nearby tree-trunks against the dim light filtering through the soft green glow of the forest. She had rested through the night so comfortably that she only now became aware of the fine, dry bed of pine-needles against her bare skin. A patch of sky showed through the leafy canopy overhead and Sally looked to see where the ceremonial bon-fire had burnt out, but nothing on the forest floor indicated where it had been. In fact no traces of the encampment where their captors had brought them appeared anywhere around them. Sally sat up to look around and her sleeping partner awoke and turned to face her. It was Ursyla!

“But”! They both said at the same time with the same bewildered expression on their faces. “I was sleeping with the Forest Princess”! Said Ursyla, and Sally stood up and gazed around them in all directions but nothing did she see except virgin woodland with narrow beams of sunlight angling horizontally through the early morning mist. They both gave out a crest-fallen sigh and asked each other about the details of their memory of the night before. Each of them told exactly the same account of a magical and passionate night spent with a tribe of beautiful seductresses and their incomparable mistress, who had enraptured each of them with a long night of intimately exquisite passion. They were both still naked and disheveled and the memories of the amazing night were still fresh in their minds, but was it only a shared dream? Was the passion they so clearly remembered only experienced with each other?! They were both mystified. Sally ran her hand between her thighs and they were coated with a sheen of dried juices from her long night of love-making, and so were Ursyla’s! They both began walking in circles, determined to find some evidence of the events of the night before, but everything… the camp, the fire, even their leather bonds were nowhere to be found!

They walked up the hill hand-in-hand and after climbing for nearly an hour they found a footpath opening out either way to their sides and the familiar trail-blazes painted on the trunks of pine trees marking the Appalachian Trail. Sally shook her head and they both sat down on a fallen log to decide which way they needed to go. The sun was climbing in the sky behind them so right was north and left was south. After discussing the probabilities of where exactly they must be on the trail, they both assented to north being the best direction. Sally was convinced the trail was magical, or the whole of the Appalachians were! She’d been drawn there by some fanciful attraction, almost sexual, and now these timeless woods were playing with her, drawing her into their mysteries, leading her to… what?! Still naked, the absence of clothes was beginning to seem less strange to them both and even quite natural and stimulating, if a bit difficult to explain to any other hikers they happened to meet. But oddly, they met nary a one! Sally’s eyes were always drawn to the beauty of the forest, but she found her gaze also fell frequently on Ursyla’s lovely behind when she walked ahead. It occurred to Sally that Ursyla must have hiked the Trail many times before so she asked: “Have any strange things happened to you on the trail before last night”? Ursyla thought the question over for a minute before answering. “The Virginia stretch of the trail has always been the most mysterious. The path it follows through the state seems a very circuitous one, meandering around the mountain crests of the Shenandoahs. But if viewed on a map, as it is seen from hights beyond where the eagles fly, it forms a great arc- part of a circle, whose center is said to have once been the realm of a mythical Indian Princess who was revered by all the Woodland Tribes, or so the legends tell”.

“Then you knew all about our mysterious lover under the pines last night”. Said Sally.
“No one knows ALL about her”! Ursyla assured. “But I have wandered the trail for years hoping the legends were true”!
“And yet I meet her the second night I am on the trail! Doesn’t that seem strange to you”? Inquired Sally.
“It is said she seeks a mate”. Ursyla mused. “One of her stature and nobility of soul. Perhaps I am not her equal. Perhaps you are”!
“That charm you wear around your neck. It is Indian, isn’t it”? Sally inquired.
“It is an effigy”. Ursyla answered. “I am Indian. At least a part of me. I am of the bear-clan. She is wolf-clan”.
“Are you of the same tribe”?
“It does not matter”. Ursyla said, looking around her at the forest. “She is a Princess of all the tribes of the Eastern Woodlands, Mohawk, Delaware, Cherokee. They all know her legend”.

Sally began to suspect that none knew her legend more than Ursyla, and that it was perhaps no accident she had found and befriended her on the trail. She wondered if her attractive companion was somehow in the service of this woodland princess, and Sally was being carefully led deeper and deeper into her sphere of influence and ever farther away from the world she knew. None of this part of the trail seemed familiar to her though she had to have passed this way before. It seemed like miles they had trekked, uphill and down following the ridges of the northern Shenandoahs and finally in late afternoon at the bottom of a steep descent they found a deep, sparkling pond fed by a waterfall plummeting down from the rocks. It was just the refreshment they both desperately needed. Wading in, they ducked their heads under the cascade of water raining down from above and drank thirstily from the clean, mountain flume. They bathed and swam playfully, dunking each other and swimming underwater between each others’ legs.

Ursyla dove under the surface and would stay under water for long periods of time so Sally would have to duck under and search for her, then she would spring up to the surface behind her to surprise Sally in a different spot. After playing this game several times she failed to re-appear and Sally grew concerned and swam underwater to look for her. Minutes went by and Ursyla still was nowhere to be found. She swam towards the waterfall ducking under the turbulence fearing her friend had got caught in an undertow. The rushing water was full of bubbles making visibility poor and the force of the out-flow kept Sally from getting close to the base of the falls but she swam around to the side and felt her way along the rocks underwater until she saw Ursyla struggling to get her foot free from between two big rocks which had pinned her leg in between them. Sally fought the current and got close enough to kick one of the rocks away from Ursyla’s leg and she quickly dragged her up to the surface sputtering and choking from lack of breath. She pulled her onto a flat, sunny boulder along the side of the falls and used her palms to compress her chest to force out the water she had swallowed. Ursyla finally gasped and caught her breath and Sally knew she’d be alright.

“Thank-you”! Ursyla coughed, and Sally smoothed her wet hair back away from her face.
“No more games”! Sally smiled as she pinched Ursyla’s erect nipple and gave it a gentle tug. From behind them a shadow crossed over them and Sally looked around to see a silhouetted figure standing upon the rocks above them. Her long, sweeping hair flowed away from her naked body, lifted by the updraft created by the waterfall.
“No, no more games”! Said the Princess. “You have passed two of my tests. Fire and water”!
“Then the third shall be of MY choosing”! Sally quickly responded. Before the Princess could say another word, she grabbed Ursyla by the arm and pulled her up and off the ledge as they both dove into the water together. Swimming away, Sally turned and shouted back to the Princess still standing high on the rocks. “I have taken your servant! You must come to me and politely request that I return her to you! This ‘coup’ counts as MINE”! Sally was familiar with the Native American custom of ‘counting coup’, and knew she had just scored a victory over the Woodland Princess, who stood high up on the rocks watching them swim away from her. Sally was not sure but she thought she heard laughter echoing across the water.

When Sally pulled Ursyla up on the small beach on the other side of the pond, she turned and watched as the lone figure on the rocks leaped high out over the water and dove straight into the foam beneath the falls. For many minutes Sally waited for her to surface but was surprised when her head at last bobbed up from the water only a few feet out from the beach where they were sitting. She waded out of the water with a sultry slink, her tanned body wet and glistening, gathering up her long hair and wringing the water out with a twist.
“You are indeed a warrior-queen, as my Ursyla has told me, and a clever one for realizing that she was mine”! Said the Princess. “The coup is yours. I respectfully beg you for the return of my servant”. With that she bowed before Sally honoring her wit and courage.
“Perhaps you will share her with me”? Sally asked.
“My maiden of the Bear-Clan is yours to share”. The Princess replied, and the three of them got up and ran naked into the water together. They swam and played with each others’ bodies all afternoon, and Sally looked forward to a long and lust-filled night, but she swam too close to the waterfall and when she emerged to catch her breath she was showered with a deluge of water and everywhere she moved the cascade inundated her until she was sputtering and choking for breath.

Sally startled awake with a steady stream of water falling on her face from a leak in the roof of the Tom Floyd Wayside Shelter. She sputtered and sat up, shaking the water off her face and climbing out of her sleeping bag she discovered it was morning and a mountain rain-storm was pounding down on the leaky shelter where she’d spent the night. She looked around for Ursyla but found she was alone. Sally was stunned! ‘No’! She thought to herself. ‘All that couldn’t have just been a dream’! But her back-pack was sitting there and the shelter had never burned down, nor apparently had anyone named Ursyla ever intruded into her solitude in the middle of the night! She was dumbfounded at how vivid it had all seemed, and she looked at the guestbook sitting on the shelf remembering the entries she had read the night before. She got her clothes on and was thankful that she wouldn’t really have to hike back to her car in the nude!

She finished reading the comments in the guestbook which her faulty flashlight had prevented her from reading the night before. There were other strange accounts, written in different languages. One in French contained the word Bête, but Sally found it all too strange to believe and she gathered up her things, filled her water bottle at the pump and quickly hiked northward towards her car. The trail seemed familiar again, and after passing the Jim Molly Denton Waystop after a couple hours of tramping, she knew the parking lot was not far ahead. She passed several other hikers on the trail and wondered what experiences lay ahead for them should they happen to stop at the same shelter where she had spent her eventful night. After crossing Highway 66 she climbed the rise and found her car right where she’d left it. She intended to drive south along the Skyline Drive 50 or 60 miles and see how the hiking was there. She wished she had someone like Ursyla to share the trail with, but she’d see what turned up. As she started up her car and looked in the rear-view mirror to back out of her parking place she saw something hanging on a chain from her mirror. Sally’s eyes widened as she recognized what it was… a silver effigy in the shape of a bear-claw!

(c) 2012 Bethany Frasier

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The Land of Legend

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Land of LegendThe Native American tradition is one of preservation. We are many tribes, many clans, but our stories carry on our history. Some have been nearly lost and forgotten as the young look to the future and forget the past. But here we remember and carry on the tales given to us from earlier times. That is our heritage. It is in fact the only thing we have left of a once-vast and diverse civilization, now gone.

Where I live there are no Indian reservations. The Native American Indian Center of Central Ohio which hosts our annual pow-wows is made up of members of numerous tribes which have reservations and enclaves in other parts of the country, some very far away. My Cherokee tribal reservation is in North Carolina. I’ve visited there many times, but here in Ohio Natives are dispersed thinly throughout the population and when we come together from different tribes we bring traditions and customs carried on more through our families than by immersion in tribal reservation life. My maternal grandmother was nearly full-blooded Cherokee and she has been the source of my interest in my tribal roots even though I am less than half Native. Although there are no tribes or reservations left in Ohio, there are many abandoned places where the Native Americans left their mark, and they are vast and awe-inspiring. The most impressive of these were in the valley of the Licking River where I grew up, also known as the Land of Legend.

The Land of Legend… a sanctuary of peace.

Few today who live in the area where I grew up are familiar with the term ‘Land of Legend’. The last vestiges of its usage are in the names of a local transit company and a driving school. Most inhabitants of this area are unaware of its rich history. It was once an important center of Native American life and culture before the Europeans came. I am a native of the Land of Legend and this is its story. It has been so-named because it was rich in the history of the American Indian going back two millennia, but it is a name now lost in time to all but a few who are aware of what happened here. You will not find it on a map, but for nearly two thousand years it was a center of commerce, and a sacred place of peace. The commodity that made this area so important to the Indian was flint. Abundant natural outcroppings at Flint Ridge supplied the Indians with the sharp-edged mineral with which arrowheads, tools, and axes could be fashioned. It was quarried from the flint-pits here and traded throughout the midwest by Indians of all tribes going back to the the Middle Woodland period when great earthwork mounds were built as temples and effigies by the pre-historic tribes now known as the Hopewell and Adena civilizations. Today the area is known as Licking County, Ohio, named for the Licking River which meanders through it from west to east. The river is shallow and muddy now like most rivers in the American midwest, choked and silted-up by the agricultural run-off of modern farming but the rivers and streams once ran clear and clean, surrounded by tall stands of virgin forests. The largest forest of cherry trees ever to grow in the world once grew here. Where this forest stood is now just a suburban neighborhood whose inhabitants have no idea why their main street is named Cherry Valley Road. This was part of the vast Northern Woodlands, where numerous tribes of the Algonquin and Iroquois-speaking Native civilizations thrived hundreds of years ago. It was said that a squirrel could jump from tree-to-tree from Lake Erie to the Ohio River without once needing to touch the ground.

There is still great beauty to be found where the river cuts through an ancient sandstone ridge near the little town of Toboso, named for the home of Cervante’s Lady Dulcinea. The state of Ohio has made several parks and nature reserves in Licking County where the most important sites of Native American history are still preserved. The sandstone formation which runs through much of southern Ohio, even forming the magnificently beautiful Hocking Hills Parks region seventy-five miles to the south is named for an ancient petroglyph, the Black Hand left by the Indians upon the sandstone wall of the Licking Narrows where the river passes through an ancient rocky gorge left by the runoff of retreating glaciers of the last Ice Age. No one knows who exactly left the sooty-black petroglyph carved high upon the rock above the narrows of the Licking River, but it was said that one of its long fingers pointed the way to the nearby flint outcroppings south of the gorge where the Indians quarried their most important natural resource for two thousand years and traded it throughout the region.

It started long ago. Just as ancient civilizations throughout the world have been defined by the commodities which made them thrive… bronze, iron, even stone, the early Native American civilization that once flourished here was based on flint.  The ancient Mound-builders discovered natural outcroppings of this useful mineral along a ridge which today runs up the eastern edge of Licking County and for centuries the flint-pits were quarried by Native tribes throughout the region. At first the flint which was used to fashion arrow-heads, knives and axes, all the necessary tools of survival in the woodlands created warfare among the various tribes, each of whom fought to control access to the precious resource. But then these ‘primitive’ tribes did something remarkable which even modern nations today rarely seem capable of doing when struggling over natural resources. They made peace! How it was actually achieved we can only conjecture, but the Indians crafted a legend out of the event and the legend transformed this small area of the country into a sacred sanctuary where conflict was prohibited and no man could raise his hand against another. The legend tells that the chiefs of all the tribes in the area were called to a great council upon the rocks high above a gorge on the Licking River near the flint quarries. Gathered upon this high promontory the chiefs sat in a circle and were told by the Great Father that warfare was forbidden in the lands around the flint-quarries and tragedy would befall any man who broke the peace. The treaty of Council Rock remained unbroken and the legend kept the peace for centuries turning this area into a center of trade which carried flint along rivers and trails around pre-Columbian North America for a thousand miles in every direction. Flint whose geological origins can be traced to the Land of Legend has been discovered as far away as Colorado and the east coast.

With peace and commerce came civilization. Two thousand years ago in what has come to be called the Middle Woodland Period, this sanctuary of non-violence became one of the most important ceremonial centers for the tribes of the Hopewell Tradition. This was a period in Native American history when trade in exotic materials from around the country enabled a widespread culture of artistic expression in beautiful crafts created from mica, copper, pipe-stone, seashells, bear and sharks-teeth, and other rare commodities. The custom of raising enormous earthen mounds which began with the Adena culture which preceded the Hopewell Tradition was expanded and ceremonial mound-groups were built as astronomical and calendrical devices charting and predicting the points on the horizon where the moon would rise and set in each season. Mounds were built in the effigies of eagles, serpents, and flying squirrels for burials as well as ceremonial enclosures for tribal gatherings. The mound-groups were not cities, but rather holy places where all the local Indian villages gathered for special ceremonies. The Newark Earthworks in the center of the Land of Legend are some of the most extensive mound-groups in the world and are now under consideration as world-heritage sites by the UN, along with the Great Pyramids and the Great Wall of China. When the white man came into this region many of the mounds were destroyed when the forests were cut down and the land leveled to make way for agriculture. The Octagon mound group in the heart of the city of Newark is now a private golf course and access is restricted to members only. The historical and cultural importance of the great mounds was dismissed by the white settlers and cities were built up around them destroying many of them for home-sites. Only a few remain intact where once they dotted the landscape of the Midwest woodlands before the westward expansion devastated the Native American culture in the nineteenth century.

When I first saw the great Indian mounds of Licking County as a little girl I was completely mystified. They didn’t fit into the world I knew at all! They stand alone in their mysterious grandeur as they have stood for over 2,000 years, vestiges from a vanished civilization in the distant past surrounded now by the ugly clutter of modern civilization. They are amazing earthworks built in geometric shapes and animal effigies which fill central and southern Ohio. I wondered why they were there. Who built them, and when? These were exactly the questions my grandmother knew would be filling my mind when she took me to see them, for they were the same questions everyone asked upon seeing them for the first time. She took me into the museum at the Great Circle Mound State Park where I discovered some of the answers, and began to learn about why the area where I live was once called the Land of Legend.

The Legend of the Black Hand

Besides the great mounds and flint quarries Licking County is also home to another Indian legend closer to my heart, the Black Hand Petroglyph. When white settlers came to this area they found the Licking Narrows Gorge, now called the Black Hand Gorge. High up above the river on the walls of sandstone cliffs rising up to form the gorge could be seen a pre-historic petroglyph, an  ancient image engraved in the rock. It was a large black hand. No one knew who had made it or how they had suspended themselves halfway up a sheer rock cliff-face to engrave it, but the local Indians who had not yet been driven from the area told various stories, that it was a warning reminding all who entered the area that no bloodshed was allowed beyond that point. Other tales said it was a pointer to the flint ridge to the south. But the story I like best is the legend of Ahyoma, the Princess of the Woodland Tribes.

The great chief Pawcongah sired a beautiful daughter named Ahyoma whose hand all the braves in the tribe sought in marriage. The comely Indian maiden secretly loved a young warrior named Lahkopis, but the Princess was such a lovely prize that her father decided to let the braves contest each other for the right to marry her. The brave who proved himself the mightiest warrior would then take her as his wife. The chief let it be known that the contest would be decided by the number of enemy scalps each brave brought back from battle and placed before him. Each warrior set out through the woods on hunting parties to take enough scalps to win the hand of the chief’s daughter and when they returned they laid out their trophies one by one before the feet of the great chief. Lahkopis believed he had collected the most scalps but an older warrior named Waconsta came forward and laid out an even greater number. The chief declared him the winner saying he could take his daughter in marriage the very next day. Heartbroken, the young Princess came to Lahkopis in the night before her wedding and they ran off together through the woodlands hoping to escape to the sanctuary of Flint Ridge where no one would dare raise a hand against them. Waconsta guessed their plan however and followed them through the darkness until he caught up to the fleeing lovers at the river gorge where the Great Father had proclaimed the Flint Ridge area to be sacred ground. They climbed to the top of Council Rock where their escape was cut off by the high cliffs over the river gorge. Unable to flee any farther Lahkopis drew his hatchet and resolved to face the mightier Waconsta in battle. When the moment came Waconsta raised his hand to strike the death blow to the young brave who had stolen his prize, but Lahkopis swung his hatchet upwards cutting off the hand of his rival. So near to the edge of the escarpment were the three that in the struggle the Princess stumbled and fell into the gorge far below as did her lover as he reached out to catch her, and his wounded rival also. The severed hand however never reached the river below and became a blackened image upon the side of the cliff. The black hand grew in size and was etched into the sandstone high above the river to serve as a warning to all others who entered the narrows never again to shed blood in the Land of Legend, the sanctuary of peace. For generations after, the Licking Narrows came to be called the Black Hand Gorge, still haunted by the spirits of the two jealous warriors and the Princess of the Woodland Tribes.

These are the stories I have been fascinated with all my life. The Land of Legend has always been a special place for Native Americans of all tribes having been a center of tribal activity for two millennia. The Native American Indian Center of Central Ohio often selects sacred sites here to host their annual pow-wows so they have often been held near my home and my grandmother and I were very active at the pow-wows when I was a teenager. The Black Hand Gorge has been one of my favorite haunts since I was very young. It was designated a state nature preserve in 1975 and a bikeway was paved on an old railway bed closely paralleling the river and it is a beautiful ride! The Council Rock promontory where so much Native legend is centered is still there although it has been heavily impacted by modern man. Two railways and an interurban track were routed through the narrow gorge over a century ago, and a tunnel was dynamited beneath Council Rock in 1903 for a track-bed. The Black Hand petroglyph itself was destroyed in 1828 when the Ohio & Erie Canal builders used gun-powder to blow away the face of the cliff where the hand was visible to make way for a tow-path for the early canal-boats which were routed through the gorge between 1835 and 1861 to carry agricultural products to market. There is also an abandoned canal-lock at the outlet of the river-narrows and an abandoned sand-quarry where my friends and I used to skinny-dip. In college I worked as a model and in the years since I have used the beauty of the Gorge as a backdrop for many of my photo-shoots. It is still a remote location and only on the south side of the river where the bike-trail runs do visitors frequent the gorge. It is a place of beauty and of memories.

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(c) February 13th, 2013  Bethany Ariel Frasier

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Rainbow Warriors

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Author’s note: Being half-Native American I have a foot in both worlds and though I live in one world, my Cherokee grandmother whom I lost to cancer nearly a year ago instilled in me a love of my Native heritage. She shared all our stories and traditions with me when I was growing up and took me to tribal ceremonies. My perspective is colored with everything she taught me from that world because I respected her immensely. This article was written last year for my Native American friend Trudy Silverheel’s website: http://www.silverheelstradingpost.com/
It is wholly taken from the point of view of my Cherokee side in honor of the history of our people that my grandmother taught to me.

Native American Beliefs

The Native Americans sustained their civilizations for 10,000 years living in harmony with nature before the Europeans forced them from their lands and ended their culture. The white man has been on our soil for barely 300 years and has very nearly destroyed the natural environment, rapaciously taking from the land, giving nothing back. The endless woodlands are gone. The rivers and streams are muddied and polluted. The air increasingly brings asthma and other respiratory diseases to our children. Even whole mountains have been blasted away to extract the coal which dirties our air but powers our energy-intensive lifestyle. It is difficult not to draw value judgements and wonder what happens to a civilization when it has finally used up nature. Will our overcrowded parks be enough to nourish our souls. Will we even remember what we have lost? The film Avatar recently struck the contrast between modern man coming to a world of primitives to strip the resources they wanted, destroying the native society in the process. It is a distillation of the story of the genocide of the American Indian. Except that we didn’t win. Another perceptive view of modern man coming to exploit the resources of a self-sustaining indigenous society living in harmony with nature can be found in the first book of the great C.S. Lewis cosmic trilogy, Out Of The Silent Planet. What these two examples from popular fiction have in common is that the “primitive” inhabitants of paradise were able to drive their intruders out, while in reality the Native Americans and the peoples of the First Nation were brutally displaced.

The Prophesy of the Rainbow Warrior.

Native American legend has it that one day modern man will finally shred the fabric of his environment to the point where looming ecological catastrophe will turn him back to the Indians to teach him how to live sustainably with the world. It is a quaint thought. But if we cling to it, have the remaining Natives been so absorbed into the modern world that they too have forgotten their original path? We must at least remember the core elements of our ways, and if going back to the wilderness is not a practical option for our teeming millions, what have we left to teach the white man that he may better sustain his society while also sustaining his environment? The best answer to this may not be in presenting a paradigm for the economics of a self-sustaining society. Such models have been set forth already by progressive conservationists across the green side of the political spectrum. What the Rainbow Warriors need to exemplify are the characteristics of the radically different world-view of the Native Americans as they were before the Europeans invaded. If modern man cannot embrace these core beliefs, then he will never divert himself from inevitable disaster. But it has been prophesied in another legend that he will.

The Legend of the White Buffalo

The Lakota have carried down through nineteen generations the legend of the White Buffalo Woman and her sacred gift to the bison-hunters of the northern American plains. Centuries ago the great herds of buffalo suddenly disappeared from their wide prairies one summer and the Lakota faced starvation if the winter should come without the hunt for the great shaggy beast to provide for their needs. Indian Summer approached and no traces were found and the tribal leaders were desperate for a sign of the return of the buffalo. Scouts were sent in all directions and one day two of these scouts spied a white buffalo on the horizon. Upon their approach the creature mysteriously changed in appearance to a beautiful young woman dressed in a white buckskin hide. One of the scouts seeing her great beauty and desiring her for his own pleasure approached the girl with lust in his heart even as the other warned him that the unusual markings of her dress denoted she was a holy woman. Upon touching her the desirous brave and the beautiful young woman were instantly consumed in a cloud which descended from the sky and as the second scout watched, the swirling cloud disappeared into the ground leaving his companion a rotted pile of bones in the grass. The remaining scout turned away with his eyes lowered promising to withdraw from the sacred woman. “Wait”! she said, and as he turned to face her she told him not to be afraid, for she had merely given his companion what he most wanted, her body in carnal pleasure, a lifetime of desire consumed in but a single moment. “I understand why you are here”. She said. “Your people are in need and it is because your lives have grown out of balance. The buffalo have left your lands because you have not been respectful of what they have given you. This man’s actions have shown your people have not learned respect for women either. He believed women are at the disposal of men to serve their pleasure. Your people must learn a new way of seeing the world. She touched the medicine bundle slung at her shoulder, bound in white buffalo skin. “I come from the people of the buffalo and I bring you a gift and the wisdom to use it to live in harmony with the earth-mother who provides everything in your lives”. She told the scout to go back to his tribe and inform them that in three days she would come to their village to deliver to the elders her sacred gift.

The scout returned and told the people of his village what had happened and they prepared a sacred altar and a ceremonial lodge for their guest, and in three days the White Buffalo Woman appeared before the gathered tribe. She knealt on the ground at the altar and unrolled the white medicine bundle drawing forth a small stone bowl and a hollowed wooden stem which when joined together formed the sacred prayer pipe, the first ever seen by the Lakota. She explained that the stone bowl represents the feminine in nature, the sacred earth-mother and creative force of the world while the stem, made from wood symbolized the male, coming forth from woman as the tree comes forth from the earth. Joining the prayer-pipe together she pinched some sacred herbs from a pouch in her bundle and placed them in the bowl. “Breath is the essence of life. It is your spirit”. She intoned as she lit the prayer-pipe. She drew in the smoke and blew it out over the sacred altar watching the smoke permeating the air and enveloping those around her. “When you say a prayer with the pipe, your breath becomes visible in the smoke. Your prayer thus becomes visible to the spirit father. You can now see your prayers rising to the creator in the smoke”. She passed the sacred pipe around to the members of the tribe and while they shared the pipe she bestowed upon them the gift of wisdom. “The balance of your lives has strayed from the vision of your first fathers, and your spirits have become impoverished. The thrill of the hunt has become more important to you than the respect shown for the sacred act of the buffalos’ sacrifice for you, and so they have abandoned you. Your vision has clouded and you no longer respect the life-giving power that is the very spirit of the sacred femme. You do not honor the balance between the male and the female and believe the woman to be inferior because she is weaker in strength. But you forget the power she holds as the bringer of new life. You treat her as servile and as merely a means for giving you pleasure. The pipe will be a constant reminder of the importance of woman as a sacred being who is like the Earth Mother, the source of all life. When you embrace the spiritual and honor the life the buffalo gives up for you, and understand the esteem with which you must hold the women of the tribe, then will balance be restored to your lives and then shall the buffalo return to your lands”.

She then taught them the seven sacred ceremonies which they must perform using the prayer pipe: Purification, Naming of the child, Healing, Adoption of a blood-brother, Marriage, Vision-quest, and the Sundance ceremony to pray for the well-being of the people. She then gave them her White Buffalo medicine bundle and bade them to keep it sacred through the four-ages bound up in her existence. At the end of each age she would look back upon the people to observe their well-being, but at the end of the fourth age she would return as the White Buffalo to restore harmony and spirituality to a troubled world. As she bade her farewell and withdrew from the Lakota she changed back into a buffalo, resting four times in her departure to rise each time dressed in garb of a different color. These changes represented the four races of the world, black, yellow, red, and finally she arose again as the White Buffalo and vanished from the world.

After centuries and the passing of the Four Ages, the White Buffalo has returned to the Lakota and they see it as the sign of the coming renewal of the world as the white man at last sees the folly of his ways and widens his vision to embrace the spirit of the Native American and walk the true path.

Respect

When the white man arrived in the New World the first impression they made on the Indian was that they were a poor race who had no respect for the land and could barely keep themselves alive in the harsh elements of the natural world. They brought disease with them which ravaged the indigenous population and their main motivation in coming to the New World was exploitation and colonial expansion. The white man it seemed, had no respect, for either the people they found already living in harmony with the natural world, nor the natural world itself. Both were merely obstacles to be conquered, which since the Reformation has been the religious and geo-political doctrine of western civilization. Putting aside the socio-economic differences between a civilization which derives its motivations from resource extraction and mass commoditization and one which only seeks to preserve a balance with the world as it is found, the characteristic which clearly defines the moral difference in cultures is respect for things different from one’s own sphere of understanding. The Native American survives through the respect for all aspects of the world. Tribal life is inclusive, not exclusionary. We embrace all the different members of our society and understand that each of those differences brings something useful to the tribe. Homogeneity is not a virtue with us as it seems to be in western civilizations. We respect our own integrity, but we respect the importance and purpose of everyone and everything around us that is different from us without arrogance or condescension. Our spiritual beliefs before the white man came and imposed his religion upon us were animistic, not authoritarian or hierarchical. Animism is the belief that there is an unique and inherent ‘spirit’ in everything around us and that the spirit of something, even if ineffable defines its core nature, determining its meaningfulness in relationship to the rest of the world. Everything has a purpose. If we don’t immediately see it, our duty is to learn what it is, but not to dismiss it out of our ignorance. As an example, an interesting facet of tribal culture in the Americas before the white man arrived is the fact that there was no such thing as homophobia. When the Europeans arrived and began to encounter Native Americans they found homosexuality and cross-gender identity among us. This to us was normal. To the white man it was a shocking abomination that offended his sensibilities to such an extent that many homosexual Indians found their way into the records of history as noteworthy curiosities. The Europeans gave a name to the members of our society who displayed ‘gay’ behavior – berdache. It was a French term with a pejorative meaning. But until the white man arrived, the native Americans attached no shame or disrespect to such cross-gendered individuals. They were seen as having two-spirits, both male and female and often attained a higher rank as shamans, artists or medicine-men because of their broader insights and greater abilities. One of the great failings of modern civilization is that most of the dominant theologies not only reject the duty to respect those minorities with differences, but they barely even tolerate their existence. To the Native American, we are all one tribe. When we have respect for the right to be different, we are less likely to dismiss our moral obligations to treat those who are different with the same respect we treat those we identify as being like ourselves.

Communitarianism

Among the world’s economic systems, socialism is perhaps the most ethically reflective of true Christian values. From each according to his ability to each according to his need, reflecting Christ’s primary prescriptive norm for a concern for the welfare of the poorest and neediest among a society. So naturally the Christian society which conducted the genocide of the American Indian inexplicably espouses the more selfish, and non-altruistic system of capitalism instead! Native American societies are more inherently socialistic by nature in the altruistic sense, but since their was no great infra-structure, industry, or commoditization among the Indians their economic system can more properly be described as communitarian rather than capitalist or socialist. Individual hand-crafts were made and bartered (or gifted), but the services provided by the hunters, the gatherers, the planters, the warriors, the artists, the healers, or the shamans were provided by individual members of the tribe according to his abilities for the common benefit of the whole community. There was no Indian concept of money or currency until the white man arrived. Exchange was made in useful personal items like tobacco, corn, pelts and furs. The closest thing the Natives had to currency was wampum, which started out as a commemorative device preserving stories, records of events, ceremonies, treaties etc. in symbolic designs of shells and beadwork strung together in various meaningful patterns. These had a commonly accepted value as records of tribal activities since there was no written language, only a tradition of oral story-telling. The shells and beads which were used to string wampum became increasingly valuable because the technology to drill the holes for the strings was primitive and it took many hours to produce them. When the Europeans came and began trading with the Indians for furs and pelts they recognized wampum as something they could produce far more cheaply than the Indians could, so the Dutch colonists began manufacturing wampum in a factory in Passaic, New Jersey to buy valuable commodities from the natives with a currency which to them was next to worthless. Soon the market became flooded however and the value of wampum decreased with inflation. By this time the French and English were forming alliances with the tribes of the eastern woodlands and began arming them with guns with which to battle other tribes aligned with the opposing side of a colonial war. The European colonists used the pressures of diminishing lands to create and intensify enmity between the tribes that had not already been displaced by colonial expansion, and the colonists succeeded in pitting the Indians against their own best interests to fight each other in the service of opposing colonial factions.

The Native Spirit

The Native Americans were deeply spiritual and saw influences affecting their world from the ‘anima’, or living spirit of everything around them. Their cosmologies came from stories based on the various innate characteristics of the spirits of animals, rocks, the trees, the wind, water, and everything else surrounding them. Through sleep and food deprivation, along with other tests of their physical and mental endurance, they envisioned separate realities through dream-journeys or vision-quests. Dreams and visions were extremely meaningful to the natives and they adopted guides and ‘familiars’ as spirit-helpers to interpret and lead them through the unfamiliar territories of alternate realities. Each journey into the inner self would reveal one of these guides in the form of an animal whose basic nature would be most beneficial in leading the individual towards the truths he most needed to understand. The Indians of the southwest used psychotropic plants to stimulate these inner-journeys into the unknown. The realms of their experience thus extended beyond the natural world into what could be deemed the metaphysical, and the mind-body connection was very pronounced in both medicine and philosophy. The Native Americans believed in a holistic approach to treating illness which has always eluded western medicine. The power of the mind was much more accessible to those who were more closely in touch with both themselves and the hidden forces of the world around them. Rituals of purification were performed to cleanse the body and the spirit.

Shamanism

The masters of spiritual journeys were the shamans. They served as the soul-guides to the tribe and mastered the techniques of purification of both the spirit and the body. One of their tools was the smudge-stick. This was a specially-prepared bundle of dried herbs and plant fibers, usually consisting of white sage, cedar, cilantro, mugwort, juniper, yarrow and other sources of fragrant vapors when burned as a punk. Using a smudge-fan composed of the feathers of many different bird species, the shaman would permeate and purify the air in a ceremonial space with the incense of the smoldering smudge. This was intended to clear the mind and facilitate the spiritual paths of the ‘journiers’. Another plant frequently burned by the Native American for its calming characteristics was sweet-grass. Some erroneously believe this is a native colloquialism for marijuana, but sweet-grass is actually a brittle, dried grass of the variety Hierochlöe odorata, also called Bison-grass and zubrowka (by the Poles who distill it with their vodka as a flavoring) commonly found growing in low-lying wetlands. When dried and burned, its psycho-tropic tendencies are mild and it is not a regulated substance, although it is generally only traded and used by Indians. One of the tools for the purification of the body was the sweat-lodge. Insulating skins were stretched over a framework of sticks and poles forming a lodge within which fire-heated stones were placed to create super-heated air inside the sweat-lodge. Members of the tribe would enter the lodge naked and expose themselves to the intense heat, forcing them to sweat out all the impurities in their bodies. When I was sixteen I participated in a sweat-lodge ceremony and it is grueling! It is not a test which can be taken lightly, nor without great care and attention as deaths have resulted from performing the cermony without careful monitoring and supervision. The extreme tests of endurance members of the tribe exposed themselves to all served to strengthen the mind and the body to withstand the rigors of life in the natural world. But the spiritual benefits of such quests for the boundaries of endurance cannot be dismissed. These stretches of both the mind and body are almost unknown among western civilizations where conformity to the narrow limits of thinking imposed by Judeo-Christian dogma is nearly universally unquestioned.

The Sacred

Among the most sacred of ceremonies are those involving the prayer pipe. The calumet has come to characterize the American Indian in the mind of the white man who has erroneously called it a peace pipe, but little is known among outsiders of the depth of spiritual meaning this device holds to the Native American. It does not merely represent the sacred. It is sacred in and of itself, for it manifests the living spirit, the breath of the spoken prayer made tangible and real in the visible smoke. It is a bond between brethren who share in the ceremony of the pipe. The covenants made in such ceremonies are inviolable and the very honor of the members of the tribe who participate in this holy communion is at stake should any action betray the commitments made therein. Treaties sworn to by the Native Americans by the “peace-pipe”, as the whites called it were considered a sacred contract. As these treaties were violated time and again by the white man, the Native American learned that his white brother had no honor. Honor and respect then are at the core of the relationship between the Native American and his world, and so that is what the Rainbow Warrior most needs to impart upon those whose hubris have led them to the edge of a precipice. Even now modern man is polarized between those reactionaries who struggle to keep their society in denial of the inevitable coming of a sea-change in historical eras, and those who realize the change in eras is upon them. What the reactionaries hold sacred has served their civilization in the past, but now threatens them with extinction for it is not sustainable. Rather than embracing the challenge of accepting a progression to a new world in which man must live in harmony with his planet instead of exploiting it, we are being blindly led through the political and economic power of vested interests to cling desperately to the ways which have nearly destroyed us through the destruction of our environment. Now is the time that the Rainbow Warrior stands ready to show the way to a sustainable existence through a change in world-views, and a return to honor and respect, but the message is lost to those who allow themselves to be misled by those who profit from exploitation. What is sacred to the Judeo-Christian world-view is the promise of salvation in some promised afterlife. To the Native American, what is sacred is his duty to honor and respect this world and live in it in balance so it is preserved for his progeny. This sense of humility and duty is then what the Rainbow Warrior must impart to mankind as he faces the end of the world which he has polluted and despoiled.

Myths and story-telling

Our tradition of passing on to the next generation the stories and myths which have come down to us from our ancestors is the means by which we sustain the continuity of our culture. The meanings and allegories of our stories are the core of our connection to a way of life which is sustainable. They are the heart of our wisdom and impart to us the values which keep our lives in balance. Our myths teach us the inimitable spirit of everything around us in nature, the wind, the water, and the earth. Without a belief in the living spirit of the world of which we are only a part we are doomed to lose respect and despoil it, robbing from our children the only meaningful gifts we can ever truly give them. The story of the White Buffalo is a story of hope, and the message that we can only hope to save ourselves by learning respect and living in harmony with our world and each other.

(c) 2012 Bethany Ariel Frasier

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