Howdy, folks, my name is Johnathon Quartermaine, but nowadays, most people call me Johny Quick. This here story is how I got ta be the dangerous bastard that people say I am. I don't think of myself that way, but y'all know how folks like a good story, particularly ifen there's a little dirt in it.
Back afore I was born, my pa and ma came over from Cornwall in the hold of one of them tubs that wuz laughingly called a passenger ship. They landed in Savanna in the spring of 1794 an' started lookin' fer a place fer a farm. They share-cropped fer two years 'til they learned the lay of the land. That's when I was born, 1797, the oldest of the crop.
Pa realized that there weren't no good land left fer po' folks like us, so he packed us up in a wagon pulled by our mule, Andrew, an' set out fer the West. He bought a farm from a land speculator who wuz selling land that wuzn't his ta sell. When we got ta our land, Pa found it was already settled by a gent what had bought the property from the same speculator the year previous. Well, Pa was shore ticked off, so he went back ta visit that speculator.
The speculator, at first, didn't want ta have nothin' ta do with Pa, but Pa convinced the bastard to return his money, all $12 of it, an' left him a keepsake. Pa cut the man's gizzard out (that's local vernacular fer cutting from crotch ta breast bone an' from one side ta the other). Nobody raised a stink 'bout it, since they had been expecting this sort of thin' ta happen any time; the bastard had a reputation fer cheatin', an' he was bound ta git caught one of these days.
That still left us without a farm, an' it wuz gittin' late in the year. There was nothin' left fer it, but Pa hired the ferry ta haul us across the Chattahoochee River inta Alabama Territory. A' course, it weren't called Alabama Territory back then, it had some sort of Injun name, Creek or Choctaw, I think. Anyways, we traveled through a skeeter infested swamp fer a while 'til we came to some dry land that nobody else wuz usin' an' what looked pretty good. So Pa claimed it an' put up a cabin.
He started farmin' the place an' had several good years. By the time I was 12, in 1809, we wuz doin' right well. A' course, by then, I was puttin in a full day's work on the farm, plus huntin' as I had time. Pa had an old musket that I don't know wuz how old, but it weren't good fer nothin' but show. Pa was real good with his hands and right smart at smithin', so he made me a crossbow fer hunting. It had a steel bow and steel bowstring, so there weren't no chance that I would break it. When he first give it ta me, I could hardly cock it, so I learned to hit my target with the first shot. The bolts he made had what he called a broadhead design, so they stayed burried in whatever they hit an' had ta be dug out. That wuzn't so much of a problem when I shot a deer, but I once made the mistake of shootin' a skunk. Ma wouldn't let me inta the house fer four days afterwards.
As I said, we wuz doin' right well with the farm, up 'til the Creeks got restless 'bout so many Whites comin' inta their territory. By 1813, when I was 16, an' a full grown man (I thought), the Creek Redsticks wuz makin' all kinds of troubles fer the Whites in eastern Alabama. They wuz called Redsticks because they painted their warclubs red, I guess to symbolize all of the blood they wuz goin' ta cover 'em with.
One summer day, the crops wuz all planted an' work was kinda slack, so I took off fer a little huntin'. It wuz early in the day, so all my brothers an' sisters still had chores ta do. Pa was goin' ta do some blacksmithin' and Ma had her usual things ta do, so I wuz able to escape without one of the kids follerin' along behind me. I found a nice deer and killed it; it wuz near noon by the time I had it field dressed an' ready ta haul back home. It wuz a pretty big one, so I had ta make me a travois to use fer haulin' it back ta the cabin.
When I dragged the deer up ta the cabin door, I wuz 'sprised that nobody ran out to meet me. I was a little pissed at that, because it weren't often that I brought back a deer as nice as this one. I was horrified by what I found inside the cabin, my ma an' both of my sisters were lyin' on the floor, dead. They had all been raped, an' from the blood, it looked like it had been many times. My three brothers were lyin' about with their heads smashed in, and there was no sign of my pa. He wuzn't nowhere inside the house, so I looked around fer him. I found him at his forge, all beat up and dead. He must of put up a fight from the signs, but it didn't save his life.
After findin' all this, I kind of collapsed beside the forge an' cried. It was the first time in five years that I had cried, not since the pain from a broken leg, but I really felt pain this time an' it had ta go somewheres. I don't know how long I just sat there an' cried, but it had to be fer hours. Finally, I came ta myself an' started diggin' graves. We had a right good spade that Pa had made, and I used that ta dig the two holes, one fer Ma and Pa, an' one fer my brothers an' sisters. It wuz dark by the time I was finished with the buryin', an' I wuz hungry fer the first time that day.
I went inside an' fixed myself some deer steak an' herbal tea fer supper. When that wuz done, I looked around, wonderin' ifen I should clean up all of the spilled blood. I decided NO, I wuzn't gonna take the time ta do that, cuz I wanted to git on the trail of the bastards what had done this horror to me an' my family. I figured ta start out the next mornin' on their trail. I'm a right fair tracker, so I figured that I could find them Injun Redstick bastards pretty quick. I knew they wuz Redsticks cuz I found a broken red painted club near my Pa's body.
I had a hell of a time sleepin' that night, but I finally managed ta drop off. I woke up afore sunup the next mornin', rarin' ta go. I ate some breakfast an' gathered up some provisions, cuz I knew I wuz goin' ta be on the trail fer a couple of weeks. I counted six men in on the attack from their tracks. I knew that I needed ta be careful, but I figured that I could take care of that many by myself.
I gathered up my weapons, four throwing knives that Pa and I had made for a lark, a short sword that I was later told looked like a Roman gladius, an' a pig-sticker of a knife that had an 8-inch blade that was thin an' sharp on both edges, I think it was the kind called a stiletto, but I ain't shore. These, with my repeatin' crossbow, made up my armament. I wuz sure that they would be enough.
The throwin' knives had points on both ends, an' I was deadly with them up ta 'bout 25-30 feet. Pa an' I used ta have throwin' contests an' I regularly beat him, an' he wuz no slouch. The pig-sticker belonged ta Pa, an' I ain't got no idee where the sword came from. The repeatin' crossbow was my own invention. I could load it with 12 bolts and fire six ta eight aimed shots a minute. It was good up to 'bout 75 yards; it could kill farther than that, but it wuzn't accurate enough beyond 75 yards.
I didn't need no musket, since they wuz no more accurate than my crossbow, took a whole lot longer ta load, an' wuz way too noisy fer my taste.
I wuz off with the sun, now that I had enough light ta track. Them Redsticks must have thought they killed everybody cuz they made no effort ta hide their trail. It wuz almost like they wanted ta be followed. Well, I wuz 'bout ta oblige 'em, cuz I was off after 'em as fast as I could foller their trail. They wuz on foot jus' like I wuz, so I figured to cotch up in a day or so.
It was near mid-afternoon when I came up close ta some Injuns carrying red painted warclubs. I figured that they must be my quarry, but there wuz only three of them. I got a little closer an' saw that one of the bastards had a scalp with blond hair hangin' from his waist. I didn't know where he got that blond scalp, but I shore as hell knew that it didn't come from no Injun. They wuz amblin' along, laughin' an' jokin', so I knew that I didn't need ta hurry.
I hung close behind 'em, hopin' that the other three bastards would show up, but they never did. My patience finally wore out, so I unlimbered my crossbow an' took careful aim at the Injun with the blond scalp. I put a bolt right between his shoulder blades an' cut his spine in two. I didn't know ifen he was dead yet, but he couldn't last fer long. I had my second bolt on its way before his two companions fully had time ta react ta the death of the first one. They did start ta turn toward the dead man, who had been between the other two, so I dropped my aiming point a little an' put my second shot inta the left kidney of the man on the right. He screamed an' fell over, further distractin' the third man. He was turned enough that my third bolt went inta his gut; he screamed, too, as he fell.
Now, y'all gotta understand that I was new ta this Injun fightin', so I made a few mistakes this first time. My first mistake wuz in not keepin' an eye on my surroundin's. Only by the greatest sort of luck did I cotch a glimpse of the Injun runnin' up behind me. I dodged just in time as his warclub came whistlin' by my head. I was too close ta do anythin' with my crossbow, so I dropped it an' pulled out my short sword.
I can't say that I knew much 'bout usin' it, but I didn't have anythin' else handy. He was pretty close ta me, so I stabbed that Injun in the gut and jerked up on the sword. That must of been the right thing ta do, cuz his guts spilled out on the ground an' he fell dead.
I wuz a little smarter this time an' looked around afore I did sumpthin' else stupid. I didn't see nobody around, so I used my huntin' knife ta cut out the bolts from the three Injuns what I had shot. I cleaned the blood off my weapons an' put them up. I still had two Injuns ta go, so I looked around fer any sign of the other two. Nothing, so I needed ta backtrack an' see where they left the group.
I had walked back along the trail fer 'bout 4 miles when I found where three men had turned away from the original group. Well, nothin' ta do but foller 'em ta see where they go. One of 'em wuz already dead, but I still had ta find the other two. They led me on a windin' path, an' I had no idee what they could have had in mind.
I'm pretty shore that they didn't know that it was here, but I came upon a cabin much like the one that had held my family. It appeared deserted, so I looked around ta see what I might find. What I found wuz two dead adults an' one dead child, a boy, inside the cabin. The woman had been raped several times, judging by the blood, afore she was killed. The cabin had not been looted, which 'sprised me a bit, but who can figure what Injuns will do?
This time, it looked like the party split up. One man left the other two, who seemed ta be herding a captive. I wuz ready ta bet that the captive was a girl 'bout my age that they planned ta rape an' torture tonight. With that in mind, I took off after them at my best trackin' speed. Fortunately, again, they were not tryin' to hide their trail, and the captive wuz not cooperating, so I had no trouble follerin' them at a trot.
I found them as they were settin' up their camp an' gittin' ready to deal with the girl they had tied to a tree. Her bodice was torn so that I could see her tits, but, except for some bruises, she looked ta be in 'sprisingly good shape. Obviously, they had not tried ta rape her, yet.
Creeks wear as many clothes as White folks, so they were takin' a few minutes ta git their clothes off. This looked like the perfect time, so I shot them both with my crossbow. In both cases, the bolts caught them in the gut. They were down, but not dead yet. Neither one was goin' anywhere with that bolt in the gut, so I ignored them an' went ta see about the girl.
She saw me comin' an' started ta act scared; I don't blame her one bit. I am kind of an imposin' character. I'm 6' 3" tall and weigh over 220 pounds. Ma used ta say that I was handsome an' wouldn't have no trouble findin' a willin' girl. I wasn't shore what she meant, but I didn't argue. I said to the girl, "Please don't be scared of me. I'm here ta he'p ya. My name is Johnny Quartermaine. What's yours?"
"Oh, praise the Lord! I thought shore that I was gonna die, an' painfully at that. I'm shore glad ta see ya, Mr. Quartermaine. My name is Cindy Brown."
"Pleased ta meet ya, Miss Brown. Give me a moment an' I'll have ya cut loose ... Here, let me help ya ta sit down. Ya lean against that there tree while I see 'bout them Injuns."
"Thank ya. What're ya gonna do ta them Injuns."
"Well, I shore ain't gonna try ta he'p them recover from their wounds. After they're dead, I need ta cut the bolts out of 'em so I can salvage them."
"They killed my ma and pa and my brother. Why wait 'til they're dead afore ya cut them?"
"OK, ya got a good point there. I'll cut out the bolts right now. That's shore ta finish 'em off."
"Good, I hope it's very painful for them. Please proceed, Mr. Quartermaine."
Neither Injun wuz dead when I started cuttin', but they both shore were by the time I finished.
She found me staring at her tits, an' we both were embarrassed. She pulled her bodice closed, an' I cut her a leather thong to tie the tear closed as best she could. She told me that she an her family were in the midst of the pre-meal prayer when the door burst open an' three Injuns rushed in. They killed her pa and brother right off, but raped her ma no tellin' how many times afore killin' her.
They held her, turn about, while the rape spree was goin' on. When the Injuns got tired, one of them smashed her ma's head in with his club, and they got ready ta leave. Two men took her away to this place while the other one went somewheres else, she had no idee where.
I told her of my adventure, an' she was glad ta hear that I had killed the other four Injuns and how I did it. She asked what I wuz goin' ta do, now that my folks were killed. I told her that I had made no plans beyond what I had accomplished today, an' I asked her what she would do.
Cindy said that she was betrothed to a man who lived on a farm about two miles from hers, an' she guessed that she should look him up. Now that her folks were dead, she did not want ta go back ta her old home. I could understand that, since I felt pretty much the same way. There weren't nothin' what could lure me back ta the scene of such pain.
We talked fer a while longer, then I found us some food an' heated it over the campfire the Injuns had started. We ate supper, an' I promised ta git her ta her betrothed's house tomorrow.