It was nice to hear a sound that symbolized a human reaction, a reasonable speak at her treat by him. Iron didn’t hope any illusions about it, not passing off as frighten cry or any over roughness on his part, mere an injury to her pride as he felt her fingers dig into for purchase likely from the abrupt shift. The pulled down was a dizzying experience and one he hoped would discourage her temper. Sadly not her cheek it seemed. Her chin up held and pouting, Melinda tried to look as prime and dignified as she could manage under the circumstances noted Iron. Her words gave him the alright, at least in his mind, to examine her ankle with his hand.
He fought the need to scuff at the last part of her comment and her reaction. It wouldn’t matter how smooth the ride was, the jarring of the horse’s motions were mere murder on broken let alone fractured bone of any type. His own experience spoke well about that. Iron focused more on the task at hand then the woman’s sassy nature at his treatment, feeling it was partly her fault for jumping off the horse in the first place and then insisting on aiding him back to Sundance using her hurt ankle as support. That threat of worsening it had forced his hand. It spread the poison farther but using guilt to bridle this wild high stepping mare into behaving wasn’t his way, at some point it would be seen to be vicious and far too jaded to be of use anymore.
He couldn’t blame her for being miserable, desperate, or rude. It was both her plight and up brings that fed this stick up her romp add that with a more distant reason of his own race and background, he quickly became use to this common trait around settlers thus he mere clenched his teeth though her words.
Still leaning down, he shifted to the side and placed the sticks upon the ground. Loosening his already limp fingers leaving them crisscrossed upon the ground, Iron’s eyes couldn’t help looked over the pale skin peering out from beneath with a neutral expression though his breath was held on the sight of it, his chest stilled and silent for a moment absorbing the shape and flesh, seeming like living perfect porcelain. Beautiful, the only word in his thoughts that seemed fitting. Muscles tensed and tightened, his free hand then took a hold of the back of her foot strongly before twisting his body and brought his knee underneath hers. It brought it closer and allowed him a better view of her foot. His fingers pulled at the laces, roughly and with much difficulty, until they came loose. Prying the curving flaps of dye cow leather as far from her ankle as possible, he gently pulled her foot upwards letting the footwear slip away.
Iron knew it would hurt, but it was the best he could do one handed.
The barrier off, his fingers touched the outer bump of the ankle feeling for more than the slight swollenness of being sprain. His touch moved to where it curved in and few inches higher, making sure the Achilles heel was intact with his palm wrapped about her slender leg. Breathing, his, was shallow and soft against the feeling of the concaves and swells in the ankle to skim over the slightest hint of a break. Slowly he once more took up the ankle in his hand. He pulled it slowly up, moving it about ever slowly to check its mobile ready to stop the instance Melinda gave a sign of unbearable pain. No matter how stubborn she was the pain would be enough to rip a small yell from her. Contented with his findings, Iron turned to his sticks and placed the foot back down to pick them back up then placing the long braided hide in his gripped teeth. His mouth occupied, Iron couldn’t answer Melinda right away as she stared off into the vast landscape towards where they were destined it seemed and spoke with confusion and pain he expected. Pinching her ankle between the sticks held by his gripping hand, the Native American leaned into her ankle taking a breath on his lean in. It was well practiced it seemed, like a past experience, that he had his forefinger reach and snag the dangling braid giving a signal for his teeth to toss it over her ankle top. Trying to make this moment as quickly as possible, he moved his head around brushing her leg, his hair bangs glided across her flesh, alongside his breath to press his cheek against the contours of the ankle just to grip the held portion.
Tedious work in the end that farther aroused him, his body feeling like a small fire filled him. Burning at parts it shouldn’t while it threatened to eat away at him. Iron never claimed to be a saint, just a man, and like all men he had lust and explored his fair share of women yet this. It was something he never experienced-at least on this level of desire- as he struggled to bite on the braid. Three times he missed despite his luck so far before it came to rest in his mouth with tightly clenched bite to keep it from running away from him, sinking into the deer hide leather dried by smoke and ample salt. Even then he could taste it, drying his tongue slightly while he refused to release it in his upward pull. Finally it was done as he held one end in his mouth and the other was pulled by his working hand to loop it through, holding the sticks in place.
It took much pausing and readjusting while he tied it, but once Iron was pleased with the secureness he pulled back. Meeting her eyes he spoke, his ass planting on ground while he pulled her leg to the side in an attempt to make it more comfortable and less awkward. He needed the rest.
“You might be stubborn enough to ignore your body and let it hurt, but I am not. The horse’s motions would’ve worsened it. Especially if it was a fracture, the up and down motions would’ve cracked the bone and drawing out pain along the trip’s course. The bone wouldn’t heal right then, crippling you,” Iron spoke with an even tone as if this to a child, since she was determined to act as one, he would talk to her like such,” This attitude proves it to me, that you would’ve bore through the pain until it was too late. Setting it now solves it for the future.”
He paused a bit before continuing to answer her question, “According to the legends, Jealousy will use that Wishing Stone to destroy everything and create it once more a new but he needs you, the woman of the story reborn, to do it. The only thing that isn’t said in the stories if that’s possible to destroy the world and recreate it. Your emotions- pull of attraction and the fear of his presence- was all left behind by what has happened before. The more I tell you the less believable it becomes, even I had a heck of a time in believing it when I was first told the story. In time, you will do things you can’t explain or even believe but only in time.”
Iron looked at the boot and then the splintered leg before pulling himself upwards, standing as he held his fingers to his lips after shifting the strings to his cradled hand. Making a high pitched whistle that echoed off the trees, gathering Sundance’s attention while her ears perked up in alert before her body moved towards them. She was paced lazy and slow, drawing out her time with each step until she came right up to Iron. Head tossed in boredom batting her mane and accepting his free hand petting and stroking her muzzle, bring her teeth to nibble at his shirt playfully. Once more he beckoned her to lower her body for them to mount looking sour at repeating the chore until the mare felt Iron’s weight settle in the saddle, he considered taking it off but the idea of leaving a trail wasn’t appealing.
Holding his hand out, Iron spoke gently to coax Melinda behind him,” Let’s head and while we travel, you ask the questions and I’ll answer them best I can. This way I’ll know what you’re ready to hear.”
Dark and cold eyes watched the pairing from the cover of trees. Its brown fur looked shabby and not kept allowing some patches of tanned skin to show through the creature’s pelt, with dappled light hitting its thick bulk making lighter spots on its flanks. Its black tarnished nose sniffed the air even as black lips pulled back revealing white teeth in a low, unheard growl. The nose scrunched up in disgust, scenting the man and hating what it scented. Its large paws sank into the ground making it’s thick legs tense and eager to rush them, separating the woman and the man while it tore into Iron’s sweet flesh and spill his blood upon the ground where it would vanish into.
Steady…. Came the icy chill of His voice, Steady… you only watch. Or you will suffer the same fate as the other one. Obey or suffer, simple yes? Obey.
Satisfied it seemed, the beast rein in its desire within the hollow shell of a great master of the forest, the large brown bear’s mind long gone seasons ago leaving only a tool to Him. It pulled back farther into the shade hiding its bulk letting the darkness swallow it up from sight, leaving no trace of its presence but a tuff of fur ripped from its hide on its retreat. Wait…watch…obey, the orders rushed through its simple mind at all times. For how long, it remains to be seen.