It is the spring of 1740. Less than a year ago, the British commander, General Oglethorpe, planned an attack on St. Augustine, in Spanish Florida. The plan was thwarted by Manuel Enriques, and his fiancee, Gabriella Deza. Their happiness is once more overshadowed with the threat of war. This time, it seems there is nothing they can do to stop it. Despite this, they are planning Gabriella’s birthday. Their dear friend, Sailfish, of the River People, is on his way to town for the celebration, when he meets the lovely, and mightily irritating, Meli Chausseur. Her green eyes and sharp wit ease his longing for Gabriella’s love, soothing the aching in his Savage Heart.
Sailfish woke at noon the next day, to find Meli lying next to him. Her green eyes held humor as she gazed at him. He sat up slowly, wondering what she found so humorous.
“You snore,” she giggled. “And talk in your sleep. Who is Gabriella? Is she the one you love?”
“What does it matter? She’s married to another man.”
“Ah. Was she your woman first?” Her green eyes sparkled merrily.
“So, did you try to steal her away from the other man?”
“Tell me what happened and I’ll quit asking you,” she teased.
“And what fun would that be for you?”
Sailfish said no more, setting about breaking their primitive camp. He kicked dirt over the coals of their fire, pouring water from the river onto the dirt.
“I’m better today, thank you,” she said by way of making conversation.
Sailfish ignored her, going about his business with a singularity of focus unmatched by many.
“Why, that’s very good to hear, Meli.” She lowered her voice, pretending to be him. “Do you think you can walk all right on your own?” She kept her voice low, standing in a manly fashion with her hands on her hips. She captured his cadence and movements well, including the casual toss of his head.
“Why yes,” she turned her body, taking a more feminine stance. She batted her eyelashes. “I believe I can walk just fine today.”
Despite himself, Sailfish laughed at her, unconsciously tossing his head. “I hear insane people are very popular in towns. Perhaps they will pay to see you talk to yourself.”
© 2018 Dellani Oakes