The hour has come that Makana has prepared for all her life. The day when she becomes Creator of Tribe Wahine. But why is her belly filled with dread? Every move she makes, she is shadowed by two guards, slaves who have not uttered one word to her. It is so different from how she was raised when all slaves were a part of the family tribe, not only servants.
But this is a necessary evil, Queen Hawika tells her. And so duty falls to her in these troubled times.
Standing near the ceremonial gong as the ancient Tribe Wahine Creators have done before her, Queen Hawika proclaims, “Makana Wahine, daughter of Kalani Wahine, who is birthed from the royal Amazon empire lineage, come near.”
Shaking like a fallen leaf in the breeze, Makana obeys.
“It is with great honor I bequeath you, Creator of Tribe Wahine. May your reign be fruitful as well as joyous and may you be blessed by the Maker for many generations.”
Makana tries to calm her heart as she answers, “Thank you, my grace. I receive your blessing and hope to rise to the honor of being Creator of Tribe Wahine.”
“I have no doubt. You are filled with mana, much like I am. I know great things will come from you, my dearest great granddaughter. May the Maker shine his face upon you.”
The queen crushes Makana in a welcome hug. All the pain she’s suffered in the weeks before tumble through her. But she tries to squelch the tears. She will grieve her parents and friends forever but must be strong for her tribe
Only a few hours pass, just long enough for Makana to change out of her ceremonial robes, when her duty as Creator must be done. Newlin has asked to be heard. He wishes to be punished for his crimes against his family tribe. The queen told Makana about his desires earlier and felt as if it was up to Makana to give out the sentencing against him. Queen Hawika will support any decision.
For Makana, this is not a hard thing to think about. She’s already made up her mind.
“Uncle Newlin, please state your request,” Makana says.
“My grace, I humbly ask to be given a just sentence for my part in the horror that has befallen my beloved tribe. Death in the Pillar is too good for the likes of me, but it is the worst way to die and well deserved.”
Makana answers, “You are saying a man who saved my life, Kiko’s life, and the lives of the children of Tribe Wahine should waste away for days in the pillar? How is this a just reward?”
Newlin shakes his head. “I gave the perpetrators easy access to the Creator’s chambers as well as planned the event. Even though I had a change of heart once I arrived, that does not make up for all the crimes committed. It is my deepest desire to pay for such atrocities. Creator, please, help my guilt to be assuaged.”
Makana answers, “Although you planned the dastardly event, you were under the influence of your witch mother and not yourself. Furthermore, you were cast out of our tribe egregiously. If I’d been creator, that would have never happened. No, Uncle Newlin, I will not grant your request. In fact, I am appointing you as Master Slave of Tribe Wahine.”
“W-What did you s-say?” Newlin asks, eyes widening.
“With your powerful mana, I welcome your faithful care and duty in wrangling all the new slaves we’ve received. You are well fit for the job as well as a tribal son. I do not want you to think on the events of the past. I have exonerated you. The way for you to make up for any ills that have occured is to show this tribe your love. Will you do me the honor of agreeing to the position of Master Slave?”
Blinking, Newlin can hardly find his voice. “Y-Yes, my creator. I will give this tribe my best. Th-Thank you.”
Makana is very grateful to her new Gatherer, Simna Altair, who had a very small tribe of her own and gave it up to join Tribe Wahine. She has brought over a woman she knows well from another tribe who is very talented in the arts who will make a wonderful Scholar.
“It is with much honor I wish to introduce to you, Tya Mashal of Tribe Kane.”
Makana is pleased to have this new tribal sister. “She is very pretty and she looks very creative indeed.”
“I can assure you she is,” Simna says, nodding.
Tya bows then greets her new leader. “Hello, Creator Makana. It is my very special honor to offer my services to your tribe. I am a painter, craftsman, writer as well as muscian. May I extend my condolences to your sudden loss as well?”
Makana smiles. “I am so happy to usher you into our tribe as Scholar. You sound very qualified indeed. We haven’t had a Scholar in our midst since before my mother’s time.”
“Then it is my pleasure to do your Creator’s portrait, if I may be so bold to offer, my grace.”
Flattered at the request, Makana says, “Of course. But let me change into a better outfit.”
After Makana slips into a more tribal uniform, Tya goes to work, painting Makana’s official Creator’s portrait.
And once Makana’s back starts hurting as the sun sets in the growing hours, Tya is finally finished. “Is it to your liking, my lady?” Tya asks.
“It is breathtaking, Tya. Thank you so much for your hard work! I will proudly display this beside my mother’s.”
Then one of the slaves who hasn’t spoken a word in the weeks of his guard exclaims, “My… what a fetching creature you are, Creator Makana. But the portrait does not do you justice. You are far more beautiful in person.”
A sudden pang tickles Makana’s insides at these lovely compliments. “Why thank you…Salvius, is it?”
His crystal blue eyes bore into Makana’s setting her face on fire. “Yes, that is my name, my lady.”
The slave behind him, Aenor, snorts but doesn’t say anything.
The two bow automatically as is customary when speaking to a creator. Makana is not used to this protocol.
Taking in their beauty, Makana wishes to know both of these handsome men better. But she has so much to do with setting up her tribe that pleasantries and talking in the shade of the sun will have to wait.
Since Makana has many slaves and a Gatherer, Scholar, as well as Warrior in Kiko (who is on the mend and should be at her post very soon,) it is time to say farewell to her grandparents. Queen Hawika has gifted Tribe Wahine with a palace and the tribe must relocate to the jungles. The queen believes it will provide much needed protection from their enemies. The journey will take her grandparents away from their duties to the queen and so they must leave.
“I’m afraid it is time to say good-bye, my darling granddaughter but know you are always on our minds and in our prayers,” Ysa says.
Makana answers, “It is with heavy heart I bid you farewell. Please do not be strangers. Will you visit me in my new home very soon?”
“Of course, sweetheart,” Aulani says, smiling. “We will come as soon as it is safe for us to do so.”
Makana pulls him into a hearty hug. She doesn’t let go because when she does, it is as if she’s all alone with only herself to make the decisions.
Although she has a healthy tribe now, they are mostly strangers to her. She is thankful to have her uncle by her side though.
Alena does not wish to do this grisly duty. Cutting off the head of her grandmother, Hawika Wahine, will be no small feat.
But what choice does she have?
Going back to her mother without it is a death sentence and she is a wanted woman, no doubt she’ll be killed on sight if she goes into any village. Word of her treachery against Tribe Wahine is already notorious. She’s seen the notices on trees and poles everywhere she’s gone. So much so, she’s had to live in the forest, foraging for her own food. Skilled enough to do this, it is wearing on her.
Her mother has retreated to Tribe Hanalani for protection. They know Newlin has given up the whereabouts of her mother’s compound.
And now the castle walls are before her. If only they weren’t so heavily guarded. Alena’s only choice is to somehow scale them without breaking her neck. And in the cover of darkness.
Taking in a deep breath, Alena curses herself for her own weakness. If she is able to do this thing and not get caught, she will throw in her gauntlet for the Queen’s Quest and defeat any Amazon who tries to go against her.
Yes. This will be worth it.
She will succeed or die.
Thank you to Damaro for giving me the handsome Aenor and haswh for the beautiful Salvius…they will serve their creator well, I have no doubt. 😍