When I asked him if had seen me, too, you know, because of our fated paths and because of my nickname which is pretty "Stormy," he told me in his deadpanned Hollywood-movie-Indian-monotone-voice he resurrects everytime he tries to be funny, "You know, leetle girl,* it not always bout you."
"Oh, Nokosee, you're no fun," I said.
"Oh, daddy, you're no fun," Haalpate echoed.
Daddy almost laughed so I pressed on to see if I could make him.
"You mean you didn't see me at the end of the rainbow?"
"No, Holatte-Sutv Turwv. But I did see you at the lightning strike. Your mo was on fire and you were smokin'."
"Yeah, smokin hot."
"Yeah, smokin hot," Haalpate replied.
Nokosee and I both turned to our baby girl, now three, born in the Everglades with fire and death all around as the New Seminole fought for their lives. We looked at each other. He wanted to laugh. I did
But he did smile. Proudly.
*Leetle girl was what his dad Busimanolotome Osceola, founder of the New Seminole, use to call me when he wanted to put me down. Later it became a term of affection.