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Ariel Anderssen
Ariel - Strangers in the Valley

She didn't even know who her parents had been, only that she had been adopted as a baby. That there was something different about her was plain to see- the corn blonde hair, the deep blue eyes, the long legs... her adoptive father had always just said that they were strangers crossing their land on a wagon who didn't understand how to find water in the valley. And so they'd died, and the tribe had found her, and taken her in.

She was always grateful, but always curious about who they might have been, these fair-haired strangers crossing their land. Where were they from? Where had they been going? What were their names?

And so when she heard the leader of the riders say that more wagons had been sighted, she knew she had to slip out and go see for herself. She loped easily along the ridge, just below the crest, knowing enough to shadow the wagon train without a tell-tale silhouette on the skyline. Her bare feet swiftly devoured the miles as she ran alongside them. She decided that they must be heading for the West water-hole. Maybe she could meet them there and talk? That was where the tribe always parlayed with their neighbors, it was a meeting place and there was a powerful taboo about fighting there.

But of course the settlers saw only a barefoot savage clad in buckskins, and knew nothing of taboos and meeting places- nor even how to use the water in the watering hole wisely. She was appalled to see their animals pissing and crapping right by the waterhole! They'd soil the well! She had to stop them!


Hywel's Note: it is always a bit tricky knowing how to deal with real-world issues on the site. That the West was "won" largely by slaughtering the native American peoples who already lived there is a a horrific tragedy of all-too-recent history whose effects are still playing out for the descendents of who were left standing. (If you've not read it, I recommend Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown).

So, as with other sensitive subjects with real-world origins, we have a dilemma to know how to play these things, and whether to even try to film them. We've always drawn the line at stuff which gives us a personal "ick", which usually seems to correspond to how recent it is, and whether there are likely to be any people around with personal memories of the time. So world war two concentration camps are right out, along with schoolgirls (even with the obligatory disclaimers of "18+" it still hits my personal ick button I'm afraid). Whereas a kidnapping in Medieval Burgundy or slavery in Ancient Rome are on much safer ground because there are unlikely to be any people around who can remember the events in question.

On the other hand, like many people I played cowboys and indians as a kid, and innocently watched TV shows like the Lone Ranger where damsels frequently got tied up and menaced by fizzing sticks of dynamite in the old mine, only to be rescued in the nick of time. So these are some of my earliest bondage-related memories, and I've always wanted to capture something of the innocent wide-eyed drama of those early memories.

Maybe we worry about this sort of thing too much because this site is only a bit of light-hearted fun and Ariel certainly doesn't look much like a native American (there were few six foot one blue eyed blondes in zip-up Leg Avenue outfits, after all). Especially as most of our Western videos have turned out to be comedy. We're trying to capture the innocent thrill of cowboys-and-indians, not mock or belittle the real world suffering in any way. And maybe now some people will get offended by childhood games being sexualized, but for me at least cowboys-and-indians always WAS sexualized, I was just too young to know exactly what that meant! ;-) I guess the main thing is that we've given it all due consideration and done our best to separate the light-hearted fantasies from the grim realities.

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