The next morning the crucified cardinal is gone. He has disappeared. No remnant of his raptor feast remains, nothing at all on the dusty dirt path save one tiny fluff of blood-red cardinal feather-down. On that same midday the juvenile red-tail is still perched above his cozy killing field. Later that afternoon he is joined by a second hawk. The two hunters stand mere inches apart, their heads twirling from side to side silently, their eyes surveying the wide fields beyond the trees, out off toward the northern mountain ridge and the sunset western distance.