A Ten Pound Bag
Chapter 102: Introductions All Around

Copyright© 2020 by Emmeran

Lunch was served as a walking meal, allowing everyone to eat when, and as, they chose. We’d sort out the village pantry in the days to come. I knew we had a storekeeper now.

I sent a runner off to Thomas and Martha. We were having a get-together tomorrow and they were invited. Amos and Holder were the emissaries for that mission and they left out at a quick pace; they’d easily make the round trip in an afternoon. If the invitation were accepted, Amos was to stay the night and guide them the next day, while Holder would return with the news. They took along two extra mounts to insure an easy trip for the family tomorrow.

Esther, along with one of the older boys who could sit a horse, was sent to watch the livestock. Everyone else was called together for formal introductions and our first census. Most of the folk were still squaring away their summertime living quarters. We called the families one at a time up to the table to meet and greet with my new “council.”

The council consisted of Michelle, Petalesharo, Captain Timmons and Mouse; of course, I was the head of the council. Sonya was the official ‘Town Clerk’ even if this was a village, at best. Many titles had been suggested for me over the last few days, almost none of which were acceptable in respectable society. In the end, I just remained Mr. Narrater for official records. Sonya consistently listed me as ‘the Narrater’ in all of the initial records. I resolved to avenge this intentional slight by assigning her all of the most annoying responsibilities.


The council all sat on one side of the table as each family in turn came up, introduced themselves and gave a brief background. We would then discuss their hopes and plans. We kept the time to less than thirty minutes per family but it still added up. We’d have to keep up the pace if we wanted to make it through the entire group by supper time.

Captain Timmons and his family went first. Sonya recorded the names, birth dates, and genders into her ledger. We’d pick up more detailed data points later, but time was important today. Each adult also discussed their intentions and their skills. Some wanted a homestead and others wanted a house and shop in the village. I let everyone know that there would be a village gathering tomorrow and that we would post the village rules and laws at that time. It was a long day.

The quick overview showed we had twelve families in our little village, plus two groups of men living as bachelors. The Pawnee scouts had two female slaves that had accompanied them to run those two tipis while the men hunted. That was going to cause a problem, but I felt confident that I’d be able to work a deal with Pete to emancipate them; somebody would get paid, but at least it wouldn’t be settled with blood. I’d aim for the British model, not the French/American disasters. Our other group of men were the boatmen, though that was a topic for another day.

All in all, it was a pretty sizeable population and rules needed to be laid out immediately. We’d work on the rules after supper. A general construction plan needed to be set also. We needed winter housing up by the end of October. The axes would start swinging tomorrow, at first light.

 
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