It takes a writer of talent to be able to write anything—and that’s the challenge William H. Joiner was given when he was asked to cut into his busy schedule and write a Mountain Man adventure. Joiner, never scared, ran out and plotted a tale that readers will agree will be one of the finest Mountain Man adventures of today. The name of this novel? “Jack Flint: Mountain Man.” You’ll be able to pre-order your copy soon—don’t worry I’ll let you know when it’s ready to go. Right now, feast your eyes on this morsel from the story…
Jack began the grim task of burying Kit. When Jack gingerly turned Kit on his side, Jack’s heart jumped with the low moan from his friend. Jack gently laid Kit back on his stomach. Jack knew he was going to have to cut the arrows out. He was afraid that Kit would not survive the removal of the arrows. After building a fire that would cauterize his knife blade, Jack began the delicate task of cutting out the arrows without killing Kit.
An hour later sweat was dripping from Jack’s brow as he laid the second arrow by the first. Jack bound up Kit’s wounds with moss from a nearby rock crevice. Jack sighed, “That’s all I know to do, Kit…The rest is up to you.” Three days later Kit regained consciousness, “What are you trying to do? Kill me by starving me to death? Rustle up some grub!” Jack grinned. He knew if Kit felt well enough to complain, he was going to be alright.
Two days passed until Kit was sitting upright. He asked, “So you’re telling me that you killed three Crow warriors all by your lonesome?” Jack pointed to the three scalps hanging on a tree limb, “You forget I was an Apache warrior.” Kit conceded, “Well…I guess…But you ain’t much more than a snot-nose kid.”
A week after he had been shot, Kit declared, “We gotta be going. Them Crow you dusted has to have been missed by now. They got braves out searching for them. We’re lucky they ain’t found us already! It’s a good thing you were smart enough to hobble their ponies before they high-tailed it back to the village. I’ll ride one. You ride the other. The third one will take Jenny’s place. I know of some rocky ground that them injuns can’t track us across.” Jack snorted, “I could track you.” Kit retorted, “You can’t do no such thing!” Jack grinned as he nodded, “Even though I was young, I was the best tracker in my tribe. I learned from my father, Great Hawk. All the Apache said he was the best tracker who ever lived. One day Great Hawk told the village that I had become better than him. He called it a gift from the Great Spirit.” Looking at the doubt that showed in Kit’s face, Jack suggested, “Why don’t we have a test? I will give you an hour’s head start. You go across your “untrackable” ground. I will come and find you.” Kit shrugged, “Okay, but I know I’m going to have to come back looking for you.”
Kit rode two miles up a rocky creek before exiting on a bed of loose shale. He chuckled out loud, “Okay, young Jack, unless you can smell like a wolf, good luck on sniffing me out!” Kit continued up a steep climb to the top of a box canyon. He marveled as he patted his horse, “I got to admit them Crow know horses. You’re a good ‘un.” Kit tied off his pony and tore off a plug of tobacco. He savored the taste with a sigh, “When I get my fill of this here tobaccey, I reckon I’ll start back to find my wandering boy.”
Mountain men learn to grab rest when they can. Kit momentarily closed his eyelids. The sixth sense that helped keep Kit alive all these years alerting him to Indians and predators trying to kill him, sent a warning spiking through his brain. He searched with his eyes never moving his head. Slowly Kit tilted his head downward locating the sound that disrupted his rest. Kit grinned as he saw Jack picking his way up the steep slope, riding one Indian pony while pulling the other. He spat, “Well, I’ll be a suck-egg mule! That boy done it!”
Kit never acknowledged him as Jack slid off the horse. Finally Kit looked at Jack, “Took you long enough. I figured you’d been scalped or et by a bear by now…You know it ain’t easy looking through bear shit trying to figure if a man was in there someplace!” Jack smiled, “That’ll be the day.”