The fighters fell to the ground under the force of Cornstalk’s initial blow.
Raven Wing countered with repeated blow to his wiry opponent's back as they rolled closer to the fire.
There was nothing Timpoochee could do to stop it.
Raven Wing threw Cornstalk from on top of him and leaped back to his feet in time to defend himself against another attack. As Cornstalk lunged again Raven Wing stepped aside kicking the skinny boy in the butt as he slid past him.
The others around Timpoochee shouted their approval at the action as the shadow of Yufala covered the fighters.
Cornstalk slid head first into the chief’s stout legs as if he’d hit a wall.
Yufala looked down at the pair, fury in his face.
“Our town lies in ruins,” he shouted, grabbing Cornstalk’s arm and nearly twisting it off.
“Some of our people are dead, including Old Hunter, and yet here are the students of the Medicine brawling like dogs!”
Panic gripped Timpoochee’s heart at hearing of the old man’s death.
In tears, he ran from the council house to the chungke yard.
A heap of broken bones and trampled flesh lay just beside the chungke mound in a pile of drying blood.
Timpoochee gazed silently at the bruised, scarred remains of the old man as Yufala moved slowly to his side.
“A frightened and confused bear took Old Hunter’s life,” Yufala whispered as he placed his right hand on Timpoochee’s shoulder. “It was a life scarred many years ago by not know the Medicine well enough.
“Know the Medicine, my son. All of it. And all its lessons in the winds so your people will not also become victims. It is our only defense.”