Return To Otrindara – Chapter 19 Excerpt


  Then it all stopped. Dark dakas standing along the edge of the treewalk grunted loudly at those of us below. Moments later more grunting echoed out from all the treewalks around the clearing. Suddenly a dark daka went over the edge with arms flailing away. Falling quickly it slammed into the ground with a thud. Then another fell down and then another. Quickly each was silenced by a barrage of weapons fire raining down upon them. Looking up we saw dark dakas grunting out loudly as they turned and scrambled down the treewalks to escape whatever had begun to attack them.

  Friendly faces now stood along the edge of the treewalk to replace those of the dark dakas. Grunting out loudly they swayed and slapped their chests in a celebration of victory over the others. Grabbing vines to hold with their feet they quickly swung upside down. Lowering downward to join us they held those who had been taken up by the dark ones. I figured it was the daka gramps had come to know who had shown up to drive the dark ones off.

  Still hanging upside down they released our friends before returning to the treewalk. Only one, much larger than the rest, stayed to talk with Manduwah. After a few minutes of talking with it Manduwah turned and said we should all take to the treewalks for safety.

  “Is that Oohree Daka?” I asked.

  “It does not see good for me to name him,” replied Manduwah.

  “I understand,” I said, suddenly remembering Otrindara's rule about being named.

  “How does Reeshard see to know of that name?” Manduwah asked with a curious smile that told me that's just who it was.

  “Only because of my grandfather,” I replied with a smile.

  Taking hold of the vines everyone was slowly lifted upwards to the treewalk. Following Oohree Daka and his kind I received a lot of curiously strange looks from the daka. Walking down a few treewalks we came to another large ovalon already set up with tables and seats. Out of respect for the daka we just plopped down on the floor along with them. Manduwah asked in a whisper if anyone had brought a neylas of the walk with them.

  Pulling out a string of washers from my pocket I handed it to Manduwah. Nodding in thanks he showed it to Oohree Daka. Oohree Daka took it and smiled at the reflectiveness of so many shiny washers. After nodding his head and grunting an acceptance to Manduwah he held it up to show it to the others. Sliding it on over his head he quickly hid it underneath his long hair. The other daka started swaying in rhythm and chanting “Oohreee Daka” in harmony over and over. Manduwah smiled at me knowing I had provided just what we needed when we needed it.

  Pointing a hand at me Oohree Daka grunted something and Manduwah nodded his head lightly before telling me Oohreee Daka wanted permission to make meet the one. Nodding my head I moved over alongside Manduwah and directly in front of Oohreee Daka. He stared at me with a look curiosity for a few minutes at first. Then lifting a hand and pointing it at himself he grunted out his name.

  Oohreee Daka,” he said before slowly bowing his head to me in what I took to be a show of respect.

  “Pointing a hand at myself I said, “Richard.” before returning a slow bowing of my head to show respect to him as well. Suddenly I was taken by surprise. Oohree Daka grunted out loudly to the others around him and quickly they all lowered their heads in respect to me. Again I bowed my head and returned to them the respect they had shown to me. Oohreee Daka cracked a curiously odd smile and grunted something to Manduwah.

  Looking at me Manduwah said, “Oohreee Daka wishes to know why the one true would see to bow his head to ones much beneath him in being?”

  With a look of sincerity I replied, “No one is beneath me even if I am the one. No one should ever be seen as less than anyone else.”