“I’ve come to barter for a woman.” It wasn’t a lie. Charlie Wolf McCallister did want a woman. And that was more explainable than the need to see Lozen, the woman of magic who had sensed their presence while the Apache sentries had not.
She laughed then. It was a husky, rich sound that floated through the night and the men of three tribes laughed too.
She pointed at Robert, the tall, red-haired McCallister, already bigger than most men, white or Indian. “And you, do you seek an Apache woman too?”
Robert had been sparking Annie Ross, and his honesty wouldn’t stand for a lie. “No ma’am. Reckon I just followed Charlie Wolf to make sure he’d keep his hair while he was bartering for a bride.”
Lozen held his gaze, studying his face a long time.
Then her smile froze as her eyes met those of the third youth. “And you? Did you come for a woman, or do you protect your friend too?”
Younger than the other two, the third McCallister flashed an easy smile that made his handsome face almost angelic in its perfection. His light grey eyes were the silver of moonlight on water, and just as unfathomable.
“Heard you were magic,” he answered her laconically. “Thought you might be able to make me smart as the wolf,” he motioned his head toward Charlie, “or pure of spirit,” his nod credited Robert with this.
Black Hawk, the Arapaho young blood who’d followed the Indian seer's orders to capture them, claimed the honor of killing them. Chief Nana stayed his hand, looking at Lozen for direction. The three McCallisters watched her too.