11 Injun Fighters II
[Go read "10 Injun Fighters" before reading this]
You may recall that Clyde had the theory that grandma Ruth, the Injun Fighter, had taken a shot at her Lurker and accidentally killed the neighbor's horse. Well, more information came in the form of a 1950 Studebaker car that came clattering up to to the homestead.
You kids probably don't know about Studebakers. Probably sounds pretty weird to you, maybe exotic, but let me tell you, they rattled and clunked and burped, and were just as clunky a piece of junk as all the rest of the cars back then. It sure was strange to see one operating at all. Clyde calls them Studewhangers. This here Studewhanger was driven by a genuine Bannock Indian, coming up from Fort Hall, some three hundred miles away where the reservation is.
Seems that Mr. Indian was on a nostalgia trip. He was following the old migration route and checking up on a family story about an ancestor who had stolen a horse around here somewhere. Really clever work it was. This ancestor was so stealthy the dogs didn't detect him (Indians love it when they can sneak around guard dogs). Yet Mr. Injun's Ancestor got too careless and took the horse for a joy ride, so to speak. He had stupidly begun poking around at another homestead and some lady popped open the door and shot his new horse dead! That's how Mr. Ancestor got his Indian name, Smart Man No Horse. The whole tribe has been laughing about it for a couple of generations.
Clyde had to go through a lot of mental adjustments. He guesses that grandma Ruth actually did shoot at an Indian. He guesses he can't claim his narkleupsy was influenced by hereditary factors from Ruth's side of the family.
They sat there on the porch, not talking, while Clyde was thinking about all this. Then Mr. Indian, with elaborate casualness, commented that Adobe, the watchdog over there, looked like he wouldn't wake up if a train ran over him. This made Clyde suspicious.
Clyde said, "I don't like the way you are looking at my EDSel car. Say! Where did you get that thang you're driving anyway?"
Mr. Indian says, "Hee hee. It must be hereditary!" I guess that means that the traditional tribal pastime had changed from the clever theft of horses to cars. Makes sense. Modern times and all.
=============== Later, that night =========
Having a narcoleptic watchdog makes better sense than you would think. Adobe may sleep a lot, most dogs do that anyway, but Adobe seldom sleeps deeply. He wakes up often, for no reason at all. He checks for Lurkers. That night, Adobe indicated to Clyde that there was something wrong out there (again). I know you suspect it was that Indian again, and you are right. Any intelligent Indian should have known that ya couldn't sneak up on a dead cow while driving a Studewhanger. Clyde got up, went through the routine about getting dressed - sheepskin coat, C'boy hat, make-em-tall boots and he went on out there. Right away he saw something. He sent a warning shot but it got a bit off course. It scared off the intruder alright but plugged a 1950 Studebaker right through the "radd-iater" and somehow the shrapnel took out a tire.
Later, some questions were posed by the authorities. Like howscome Clyde has possession of a stolen Studebaker with a brang new bullet hole in the radd-iator? Clyde, feeling half humorous and half disgusted, told the sheriff that he had been fighting Indians. He shouldn't a put it just that way because word gets around.
We don't know that Injun's name but Clyde calls him Smart Man No Studewhanger.
Clyde went over to Michaels Bar and Grill. The bartender says, "Hello there, Mr. Injun Fighter! "
Clyde grumbles, "It's hereditary."
Bartender says "Huh?"
Reporting from Fort Mudge, Idaho
11 Injun Fighters Ii
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