Jamie To You, But To Others – ‘Devil’s Spawn’

Well, James Douglas MacLean—or Jamie—it’s time to introduce you. From your baleful look, you’re tired of waiting your turn. Patience has never been one of your virtues, nor was it Kathryn’s.

You were born in Scotland during a dangerous period in its history, witnessing man’s inhumanity to man first hand on the Battlefield of Culloden. With the destruction of the Clan system your family fled to the American Colonies with other Highlanders—a difficult transition for a boy of eight. But to add ‘insult to injury’, your mother soon gave birth to a girl rather than the brother you had wished for. What good was a girl?

You taunted and teased her unmercifully, even pinched her painfully when your parents were out of sight. Yet Kathryn never tattled on you. For as she matured, she understood the huge duties delegated to you as the only son. Managing the farm was to be your obligation, a heavy burden for a young man as eager to share the freedom of unlimited adventure that you had instilled in your sister. She rode as well as you, handled a dirk and tomahawk as well as you, and damn her, was your equal in shooting ability.

What if your father had not died suddenly? What if you hadn’t married a woman you loved more than life itself who died soon after your last child’s birth, leaving you the additional burden of four young children to raise? You leaned heavily on Kathryn …who stayed by your side and held you close when grief overwhelmed you. Kathryn: your ‘rock’, your sanity.

But as time moved on, Kathryn asserted her right to be free to seek her own path. With a wave of her hand and a quick: “It’s time, Jamie,” she flung herself onto her mare’s back and galloped towards the woods. Who knew if, or when, she might return? You constantly interfered in her life, and when she was home you fought like cats and dogs. Yet every time she rode out, endless loneliness engulfed you … and constantly simmering jealousy reared its ugly head.

By the time the Revolutionary War turned its focus on the South, you had already formed a fearless group of well-trained militia—a group that unanimously chose you as their leader. English supply wagons were headed in your direction and your men—armed and eager to ride.

When you bragged to your sister of your accomplishment, expecting a show of respect, she laughed. Quickly leaping onto her mare’s back, she galloped towards the woods leaving you fuming. On that fateful day, neither of you could have possibly envisioned the unthinkable life-changing destinies awaiting each of you.

Jamie: for your constant attacks on English supply wagons you will come to be known as the Devil’s Spawn’, cursed through clenched British teeth as the intolerable bane of their existence.

And Kathryn? What you two shared growing up was a contentious sibling rivalry at best. However, what the future holds for both of you will make those youthful years seem to have been nothing more than a temporary spat.