The old man turned off the truck. The only sound was the Ford’s engine ticking as it cooled.

“Well,” said Cole. “Guess I better get started.”

“Guess you better,” said the old man.

Cole opened the door and stepped onto the rocky ground. The old man got out and came around to stand next to him. He lit a cigarette. They watched the dawn in silence. The sky went from purple to pink to pale blue as the sun crested the hill.

The old man got into the truck. He  started the engine.

“See you in four days,” he said.


Friday Fictioneers

A Native American person will undertake Hanbleceya, a vision quest, in an isolated area. In the Lakota tradition, the seeker will go four days without food, water, or contact with another human being.  A successful vision quest will put the seeker in contact with a spirit helper or guide. The vision often comes in the form of an animal, a dream, or a song. This guide’ s presence is often signaled by a visionary experience or contact with an animal. Traditionally, a Wičasa Wakan – Holy Man – will advise the seeker and interpret the vision.



Add Yours
  1. rochellewisoff

    Dear Josh,

    You captured Cole’s anticipation of what’s to come. Your explanation after the story saved me Googling Hanbleceya. ;) Well done as I’ve come to expect.



  2. EagleAye

    Most cool. I’ve heard about vision quests for years. This is a great characterization of one. I still haven’t discovered my spirit animal, though I note I’m especially drawn to Otters.

  3. Christine Goodnough

    A well told tale and bit of native history. a person wonders if any young men were swallowed up by the elements and never came back to tell what they’d seen? (However, this was their land and they were physically prepared.)

  4. granonine

    I loved this. I’ve done a good bit of reading about Native American practices. I knew pretty quickly what was happening here, but still appreciated the explanatory note.

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