That night I cried for the first time since that whole, sad, sordid, tragic set of events began (125) David Hayden lives in a small town in Montana. His house keeper Marie Little Soldier one day dies unexpectedly in their house. David questions the true value of family and law, when one of his family members is the suspects. Sometimes the people you don’t expect, cant hurt you the most.
Gail during the novel has expectations from Wes, but when these events occur the character is affected. Wes never fitted into her ideal occupation and happiness. Her reason is as a sheriff, Wes is expected with dangerous events which can possibly risk his life. Gail wants her family to move from Bentrock because she wants Wes to be himself and not a Hayden. “My mother fervently believed that my father indeed, all of us would be happier if he practiced law, and if we did not live in Montana” (19). Gail had this idea of her husband being in a established job could maintain her family, but since Grandpa Julian has been a dominating man in the sheriffs office with Len McAuley, he had to retire due to his age and his obsequious son, Wes will become sheriff. Gail is concerned of her sons value if they stay in the small town. Of course as a mother would civilize their children because no one will do it for them. Gail has these expectations from Wes of being a lawyer instead of being a police, I think if Wes were to be a lawyer she wouldn’t be unhappy were they are now. Not only the concern of her husband, but her son, David living in a small town, will change his values. Wes and Gail must have had their discussions where David will grow up, whether a small town or in North Dakota. She has expectations of Wes, but if he doesn ‘t decide to do a fast action he will jeopardize their marriage which affects both.
Losing a friend lead her to question her husbands duty as husband and sheriff. She lost a companion who helped her within the house. Marie Little Soldier was their housekeeper, but when she is sick with phenomena she acts hysterically when Gail suggest a doctor. When Frank came to examine her, Marie is shouting to Gail she doesn ‘t want to be checked. After Frank has examined her with Gail in the room, she is left alone with Marie. Marie told her the reason she didn’t want Frank Hayden in the room. She finds out Frank molests Indian girls during their examinations in the reservation. Gail begs her husband also sheriff, to do something about the case. Wes doesn’t believe Gail as what he is telling her what Marie claimed. This would be the start of conflict in married couples. “I told you. When he examines Indians girls he does things to them” (47). Wes tells her Doctor Snow would examine him and he would be fine, in conclusion he thinks Marie is lying. As a husband he should listen to her, but instead he back fired at her by telling her Frank examines people as a doctor should do. Gail one afternoon, found Marie lying dead on her bed. She couldn’t seem to take the news. Losing a friend and having conflicts with her husband about Frank has made her realize will Wes do the right or wrong and listen to her or her brother.
Children have an idea of who their idol is when they grow up with the people they love the, but when the true person comes out, it questions David with Uncle Frank and Julian. David knew Uncle Frank as the handsome man who is a doctor. He gave David expensive gifts for Christmas, what kid would not love their uncle, but when David finds out Uncle Frank murdered Marie. He couldn’t seem to get the fact, his uncle is a murder. “He was Uncle Frank, who tried to teach me how to throw a curve ball, who gave me expensive gifts for my birthday and Christmas, who made bad jokes all though my grandma Thanksgiving and Easter dinner, who every year went up to Canada to buy the best fireworks for our Fourth of July celebration. Who married Aunt Gloria, beautiful Aunt Gloria, Who murdered my beloved Marie” (144). David couldn’t seem to take the news, finding out his most beloved uncle has murdered his friend who cared for him. Usually David parents are in work, and as work comes the children are invisible to the adults. Marie has been their for David making him not feel lonely, but she also is someone he can talk to. Being in David`s position he felt deception of the reality of his uncle.
In addition, as any other kid, David thought his grandfather would do something about Franks. The Hayden family gets together at grandfather Julian`s house. David adores the house, due the amount of space. He felt the tensions when his father asked grandpa Julian where Franks was and asking his dad about something. David is accustomed to listen to conversations near the doors, since he found out about Uncle Frank. Frank being in trouble, David believed his grandpa would teach him a lesson. “Yes tell, him, I thought, Tell Grandfather. Tell him, and he`ll take care of everything” (71). Wes tried to tell his father, but his own dad told Wes, Frank always loved the red meat, which didn’t surprise Julian. David felt anger inside, the person he loves also turned him down. He show his anger by squeezing the trigger of the lighter over and over again. With the lighter flicking, David is trying to forget the murder of Marie and the family members reacting to Franks assassination, by each fire flick, it meant he tried to burn those memories.
He believed his two family members would not do such thing of denying. Children have an idol when they grow up, but after David found out what Frank did, he was delusional of his uncle.
As a brother, son, and sheriff of the county, Wes chooses a decision which cost him his relationships. Frank and Wes grew up together and a brother to brother bond is a true value. When Gail told Wes Indians from the reservations are getting molested. He cant seemed to bare the truth, especially when David saw Frank in the house. “He could have been looking in on her. Checking on a patient. Doctors look in on their patient. She was fine when he left her” (99). As brother of Frank, he tried to deny the possible evidence his brother left at his house. Wes tries to find excuses of reasons why Frank left his truck and when he checked upon Marie, she was fine. Gail tries to snap Wes from his excuses, but as a brother, he would try to deny his brother`s guilt because he knows him for a long time. Wes knows Frank as a doctor, his fathers favorite son. When Wes arrested Frank and put him in the basement, David saw his father with red eyes.
Furthermore, Wes is trying to get justice to those girls, but his least expected was involved in Franks arrest. Three days after Marie`s death, Wes brought his brother to his house, as David saw his dad he wasn’t happy. After putting his own brother in the basement as a punishment, he drinks whiskey to ease the pain of letting someone down. When Gail came from work Wes told her he arrested his own brother. He felt emotional for putting his brother in jail, he had no choice. Having Frank in the basement, made the Hayden ‘s come to Wes`s house. Grandfather demanded Wes to left Frank out, what he was doing was absurd. Wes tries to explain to his father this a legal matter in which his father ignore the truth. Even his own mom denied a girl can mistaken a doctors procedure. Julian exclaims Wes to bring Frank out with his point of view of the murder. “Ever since war, ever since Frank came home in a uniform and you stayed here, you`ve been jealous” (119). Wes is hurt from his fathers own belief of him. His father keeps insisting Wes he locked up his own brother, a son and a hero. Wes defends himself by telling his father, what the law is. His father leaves after Wes claims Frank is a murder. David found his father lying on Gail ‘s lap, he is crying to the fact his own father chose Frank over what justice is meant. He is affected emotionally having to decide these decisions. As a brother, son, and sheriff he had no choice, but to the right even if he lost his fathers relationship his brother life.
Sometimes the people you don’t expect, can hurt you the most. Wes is trying to the best for justice even if it meant his own brothers death and the cost of his dad relationship. Comparing to society, certain people would do anything to save their family members name from being stained as bad. People especially, a father or a mother would try their best to change the point of views from others how their children are. As when Grandfather Julian demanded Wes to let go of Frank, Wes couldn’t, this reminds me of when I was an 8th graders, when my brother was a high schooler he got in a car accident under the influence of alcohol. I recall my mother trying to lie to the sheriff. She want to blame herself or my father of the accident, but my brother clearly was the one who cause this accident. He was in my dad car, I can tell by my mom eyes she didn’t want his own son to be in jail, but he had to pay for the consequences of going to a party and getting drunk. I realized my brother unexpectedly hurt my mother and father, because they thought he was a good kid, he is, but we never expected this.