Even after regaining consciousness, Baxter had no idea of where the pickup was headed. It was obviously being driven on primitive roads, or cross country, for his body ached all over from bouncing around against the hard bed of the pickup.
After what seemed to be a very long time, the truck stopped. He felt the weight of the tarps being removed, then the handcuffs being released from the tie down loops. Without a word being spoken, a strong pair of hands dumped him out the back of the truck, and left him laying there for a few minutes.
When his blindfold was finally removed, he saw that they were in a part of the reservation that he was completely unfamiliar with. There were no buildings. There was not even a road.
When his eyes finally found his enemy, he was stunned. If it were not for the pain he felt, Tony Baxter would have believed that it was all a dream. Standing in front of him, was something straight out of the nineteenth century. Before him stood a tall, muscular Blackfoot warrior in full native dress, his large stoic face painted for war. As he looked into the fierce dark eyes of this warrior, Baxter's body involuntarily trembled for a second or two.
Without a word, the Indian pulled a knife and slashed the ropes around Baxter's feet. He pulled him to his feet, and walked him to a dark brown pony. The warrior motioned for him to climb into the saddle. Once there, his hands were tied to the saddle horn, and his legs bound to the stirrups.
The Blackfoot warrior's horse was an Appaloosa stud. Like his rider, he had been painted for war. The Indian grabbed the pony's reins and led them off across country. They rode deeper and deeper into wild country, stopping only to rest and water the horses occasionally. As the sun rose higher in the sky, the warrior stopped.
To Baxter, nothing about this spot seemed any different from all the rest of the country they had crossed. There seemed to be no particular reason for stopping at this place. Were they going to be met by someone? Had some of his enemies paid this Indian to capture and deliver him?
As he pondered those questions and tried to anticipate what might be in store for him, the Indian released his hands from the saddle horn and untied the ropes that bound his legs to the stirrups. He then grabbed Baxter by the shirt, and threw him off the pony, watching silently as Baxter fell awkwardly to the ground. He was then pulled by his collar to a spot in the clearing, and his wrists tied to his ankles. As Baxter struggled to get into some semblance of a sitting position, the warrior walked over and sat down under a shade tree. He sat in cross legged fashion, quietly staring at his prisoner. For an hour or more, the only movements in the warrior's body were when he took a breath, and an occasional blink of the eye. He stared unrelentingly at Baxter, his cold dark eyes totally void of emotion. Then for seemingly no reason, he stood, walked over to his prisoner, and kicked him in the face, rendering him unconscious.