Chief White Halfoat was out to revenge himself upon the white man. He could barely read or write and had been assigned to Captain Black as assistant intelligence officer.

“How could I learn to read or write?” Chief White Halfoat demanded with simulated belligerence, raising his voice again so that Doc Daneeka would hear. “Every place we pitched our tent, they sank an oil well. Every time they sank a well, they hit oil. And every time they hit oil, they made us pack up our tent and go someplace else. We were human diving rods. Our whole family had a natural affinity for petroleum deposits, and soon every oil company in the world had technicians chasing us around. We were always on the move. It was one hell of a way to bring up a child, I can tell you. I don’t think I ever spent more than a week in one place.”

His earliest memory was of a geologist.

*

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