Red Cloud
Fictional Character
Chicxulub Asteroid Missed
POD: 66 million years ago
Appearance(s): "Bonehunters"
Type of Appearance: Direct
Nationality: Unnamed
Species: Brownskin
Religion: Polytheist
Occupation: Monarch

Red Cloud was a king of brownskinned natives, ruling a domain that included land in the Black Hills.[1] He developed a good relationship with the greenskinned paleontologist Ontinil; Ontinil respected the brownskins, and was only interested in entering their land to dig for fossils, so Red Cloud trusted him.[2]

Ontinil's group arrived at the dig site, worked for the remainder of the day, and went to sleep. Red Cloud's fighters surrounded them at first light. Ontinil defused the situation by explaining why they were there, and Red Cloud himself arrived to greet the group. Red Cloud and his chieftains noticed that one of Ontinil's guides, a greenskin named Rekek, had a brownskin he'd dubbed Junior. Rekek explained to Red Cloud that he had raised Junior from when he was a hatchling. Red Cloud was impressed that a greenskin had actied mercifully when he was not obligated to do so.[3] The introductions complete, Ontinil then invited Red Cloud to view the dig, and the Rekeks joined in as well. Ontinil also gave a brief explanation of the scientific method. After a time, Red Cloud and his fellows went on their way.[4]

After a few days, Rekek set out on his own, and stumbled upon another greenskin bonehunter, Sterba, who worked for Trinka. Rekek confirmed that Sterba and Trinka did not have Red Cloud's permission to be there. When Sterba protested that they had permission from Fort Ironclaw, Rekek reminded Sterba how little that mattered, and that without Red Cloud's permission, Trinka's presence might start a war. Sterba said he'd share this with Trinka.[5] Rekek returned to camp and altered Ontinil, who was furious. While he initially didn't intend to tell Red Cloud, Red Cloud had already found out and confronted Ontinl, who confirmed Rekek's report.[6]

Rekek told Red Cloud about his contact with Sterba, and Ontinil pointedly reminded Red Cloud that he'd secured permission to dig, but that Trinka had not. Red Cloud commanded that Rekek and Junior accompany him the next day to confront Trinka, acting as witnesses.[7] The band, along with Rekeks, found Trinka and Sterba, and Red Cloud commanded Trinka to leave while his warriors all pointed their muskets at him.[8] They seized the bones Trinka's expedition had recovered, and gave them to Ontinil, and most of their firearms and ammunition. When Trinka protested, Red Cloud informed Trinka that if they protested, his men would kill the intruders. Trinka and his people returned to Fort Iron Claw before the day was over.[9]

Ontinil was pleased with the bounty, and pledged to tell the world of Red Cloud's role. Before he took his leave, Red Cloud spoke with the Rekeks, specifically to Junior. All agreed that Junior was better off remaining with Rekek than joining Red Cloud's people.[10]

Literary Comment[]

King Red Cloud is based on the Lakota leader Red Cloud (1822-1909).


  1. Analog, May/June 2019, Vol. CXXXIX, nos. 5 & 6, pg. 14.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid. pg. 18.
  4. Ibid., pgs. 18-19.
  5. Ibid., pgs. 20-21.
  6. Ibid. pg 21-22.
  7. Ibid., pg. 22.
  8. Ibid., pgs 23-24.
  9. Ibid., pgs. 24-25.
  10. Ibid., pg. 26.