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Short Story: E4 Tribe Life

Cave Painting

This story is inspired by science, history and anthropology, but is in no-way accurate.

This is a work of pure artistic fiction.


Episode 4

Today I woke up early, with the rest of my tribe. I was not trying to. Feeling I could not sleep any more, I went out to release my used water. I looked around to see what everyone was up to, they were all doing their morning rituals, so I went to my new place humming my singling as I went. Halfway out I heard a rustle in a bush a few paces away. It was only Mau. I had forgotten to grab food before I set out, it made me feel bad not to have anything for my new friend.

Out on my rock, I laid down on the morning wetness in the cool breeze. The warm glowing ball in the sky made my skin feel amazing. I could hear the water speaking from the stream nearby and the hush of the leaves. I smiled and let my hand dangle off the edge of my rock. That moment I felt something lightly touch, then tickle my fingertips. I jumped onto my fit, I think I let out a yip as I looked around. A streak of silver shot into a thick bush, sat down, embarrassed by my outburst. Mau had finally come up to me. What did that mean?

I stayed on my rock for a long time hoping Mau would come back. I must have scared it very much, because it did not come back. I was extremely sad, so sad that pleasure with my favorite humans did not make me happy. I was more sad than I expected. After several days I consulted with The Shammon, who was not helpful. This was new for our tribe, and new for The Sammon, there were no stories about this. Maybe at the gathering of tribes we could learn more, until then I was urged to work on my duties for the gathering, I had a very high honor and as the host, we had to be our best. It was still many moons away, I had lots of time to prepare.

Many mornings passed and I still did not see Mau. Instead I tried to join in the forging games. I learned many things, and it felt nice to be among the tribe, but I did not feel like I belonged. It was not what made me happy. In the middle of listening to a few humans discussing the best method of preparing this meal or that, I felt an arm around my shoulder. “Come with me,” Eeatou said into my ear.

We walked away into a quiet spot. “What is the matter? You have been distant even though you sit with everyone. You haven’t been sneaking away to your spot or eating.”

I shrugged. It didn’t make sense to me either.

“You act as if your favorite humans have gone away.”

I looked off into the distance, I had no words.

“Come, let us visit your favorite rock and have food and passion by the water.”

I nodded and followed. Why was I so upset? Eeatou was right, it was as if my favorite humans had gone away, but they were all here. I was not even thinking about my duties, they did not scare me.

On the rock we looked out at the bright sky. It was a perfect day. The wind was not hot, not cold. Eeatou gave me some dried meat and we ate together watching the clouds dance. I did not move to make pleasure with my favorite human, I just laid there watching the sky, listening to nature sing. Eeatou put an arm around me and held me close, no expectations, just love.

That was the moment I heard the sound I’d been waiting for. The tiniest rustle of leaves in a nearby shrub. I moved slow as possible and motioned for Eeatou to stay still. There, in the shrub a tiny hint of silver. I looked for more dried meat, pulled off a small bite and gently threw it toward Mau. I motioned for Eeatou to move very slowly and we both sat watching, waiting. It was a long time before Mau slowly came out and sniffed the food, looked at me, then at the food, then at my favorite human, then grabbed the food and ran fast, fast, fast.

I smiled at Eeatou and we embraced for a very long time. I always feel seen and understood by my favorite human, more deeply than anyone else I’ve known. I was so grateful to share this amazing moment together.

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