Bodie would have argued that Jacob’s sweet Jesus was pictured in the Bible wearing a loincloth much like Hunting Wind’s. But Hunting Wind was not into the truth.
He was about taunting his former brother for his conversion and using Bodie to play it out. Besides, the sharp end of a brave’s spear gestured at Bodie’s bare belly when he hesitated spoke for itself.
Awkward Bodie’s hand unclasped his belt. With a deep breath to control his discomfort, he slipped the deerskin pants down over his hips. He wasn’t in the habit of exposing himself. Standing with his pants part way down his thighs made him feel more than uncomfortable.
He had bathed in rivers with other men on a roundup. But they were men he knew. He was surrounded by strangers here, he was inundated with enmity. And there had been nothing about this tribe of Sioux since his capture that assured him that they would not take his nakedness further. A gesture with the spear made him shove the pants down to his feet. Uncomfortable, he stepped out of them.
Women .. squaws .. staring at him. Without thinking his hand went to cover himself up. He didn’t wander about publicly with his clothes off in front of women. He didn’t offend the ladies with his nakedness. Then he caught a movement. And regretted his modesty in an instant. A brave had dug his elbow into his neighbour’s side. His head nodded at Bodie covering up his embarrassment. The pair of them sniggered.
Bodie knew his mistake. They’d managed to make him feel small. Wrong! A brave was supposed to ride above his captor’s efforts to rule over him. The captured brave was supposed to show the fearless man he was. Standing up to his captives .. not cringing because his cock was out.
Instantly Bodie corrected himself. His arms fell by his side. He lifted his head, stuck out a manly chin. This look defied this tribe .. for getting him like this. His broad muscled chest rose up proud and strong. Showing a man not intimidated by the enemy however they had him undressed.
Just in time. His upper arms were grabbed. A pair of braves dug their grips tight on his hard muscle and pushed him forward. They had spears in the free hand but Bodie was not going to be mad enough to put up a fight. He was surrounded. Armed braves all around. And Bodie would have to fight his way through the mob stood here to humiliate him. He’d not get far if he made a run for it. He had no choice. He was to be paraded around the village .. only a couple of paces away from the on-looking crowd. Imitating Jacob’s sweet Jesus being walked through the jeering crowds on the way to his cross.
Never had silence been so deafening. No jeering. No abuse. Silence. Walked by his escort, he was marched in front of the tribe, naked, humiliated. In unnerving silence. Not a murmur passed. Not a jeer, not even a cheer. Eyes cold with deep hate watched him as he passed only feet away from them. Their chilled hatred tore at his bare skin. Eerie. A tremor of unease shivered down Bodie’s spine. Almost wishing a woman would spit at his feet as he strode passed. Some sign of emotion. This calculating coldness that wafted over his nakedness as he walked close before them .. creepy. It knotted anxiety tight in his gut.
His escort suddenly grabbed his arms and made him stop. Halfway around the tribe his nakedness had been walked. Scary, though nothing had happened. His nerves had been jumpy. That intimidating silence had pre-occupied his mind. A mistake, he realised when the braves made him turn.
Halfway around the compound they had paraded him. Now, turned, Bodie was made to face the cross. At the other end, beneath it, stood Jacob, He had been made to stand in front of the symbol of his conversion. Next to him, seemingly dominant beside his former brother, there was Hunting Wind. But worryingly .. what had formed while Bodie had been pre-occupied with being paraded in his nakedness before the silent tribe .. Bodie saw two lines of warriors. They formed a tunnel .. the cross of torture at the far end. Two lines of warriors .. forming an escort for “sweet Jesu’s” walk to the cross. In mock re-enactment of the city turning out to mock Jacob’s saviour walked to his death. Silence around. Menace in front. Edgy Bodie took it in. Two lines of armed braves between him and Jacob’s blessed cross. Each brave held a long stick in the hand. Maybe a couple of dozen hostile warriors in either line, armed. Lines down which Bodie would be made to run.
A shiver passed down Bodie’s bare back. A tunnel of warriors. Bodie recognised the formation. He saw his task. Bodie’s goal was at the other end. Racing for the salvation of the cross. Between that and Bodie maybe twenty braves armed with sticks. Bodie would be made to run through them. To seek his salvation. Sweet Jesus!
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