After they got home, Zaleena gladly changed her outfit. Now that she was no longer creator, she was not allowed to wear white anymore, so she was able to use her favourite colours for her new clothes.
The new Creator, Manika, was now clad all in white and she was also wearing the necklace and the bracelet which signified that she had completed the Creator’s ritual. She had called in her first tribe meeting as new creator.
After they had discussed a few smaller dealings like income and additions to the compound, Manika dismissed Nieva to tend to the plants, they surely needed it since the sun was burning down fiercely today.
Manika saw from the corner of her eye, that both slaves turned their heads looking after Nieva. It stung a bit, thinking about her affection for Taam, but she shoved away the feeling.
After the meeting, Manika asked her mother to stay for a few more moments.
“Mother, I know I have to breed soon. But I am unsure of who to choose. Baato is not the obvious choice, for he has bad traits. But Taam is our best skilled slave and it would be a shame if the tribe lost him. Do I have to bring a new slave to the tribe?”
The truth was, that Manika wanted nothing more than to be with Taam. But she didn’t have it in her heart to sacrifice him. She knew that Amazon law was there for a reason and her heiress would need the goddesses blessing, but she was reluctant to seal Taam’s fate. Especially since he seemed to like Nieva a lot more. It would have been very selfish.
“Don’t worry, my daughter, I am sure you will make the right choice. Taam is indeed a very skilled slave but he would also bless great strength and skill to your heiress. But it is your decision and I believe you are a wise enough creator to know what to do.”
“Thank you, Mother”, Manika stands up and leaves. She is thoughtful of what Zaleena has said. Did she really have that sort of wisdom? Would she make the right choice?
Zaleena might have seemed optimistic towards her daughter, but actually she was torn. She didn’t buy Manika’s excuse for not breeding with Taam for one second. She was afraid her daughter was becoming overly attached. That would be bad news for the tribe…
Meanwhile, inside the house, Baato is sitting at the table with Nieva.
“Are the plants doing alright?”, he asks, “It hasn’t rained for days!”
Nieva doesn’t answer right away as she is still munching on some scrambled eggs.
“Well, I suppose they are not that alright if they get so few water”, Baato keeps talking, “Not that I think your a bad gardener, I just meant… If you need help…”, he stumbled over his words, embarrassed. Why did he always screw up when talking to her?
Finally, Nieva swallowed. She was not in a particularly good mood as the garden actually had been a lot of work today, also the heat was excruciating.
“It may not have rained outside, but it looks like its raining in here. You should better fix that plumbing over there, isn’t that your job?”, she grumbles.
Baato jumps up. Of course she is right.
“Oh yes, I am sorry, I will do it right now.”
He still doesn’t understand Nieva. Sometimes she was so nice to him and sometimes she treated him just like the lowly slave he was. He just didn’t get it.
“What are you doing?”, a voice asks him. Baato turns and sees Kahio standing behind him. The boy was doing quite well since he got back from the Temple. He spent a lot of time with Taam and watched him train. He wanted to be strong too, he said.
“I just fixed that sink. Being able to fix things is a very useful skill you know”, he explained.
“Will you teach me sometime?”, Kahio smiled.
“Of course, little one.”
Baato was glad that Kahio seemed to be happy again.
In fact, the little boy had been very ambitious to make up for his – in his eyes – embarrassing and girly behaviour. He helped with household chores as often as he could, even if children normally didn’t have to do slave work.
Meanwhile, Baato sat down at the table. Since Nieva had gone back outside and none of the other woman was in sight, he had a little chat with Taam.
“She is so beautiful, you know”, Taam was just saying, “I’m afraid to look at her. There should be a statue of her! I believe non of us is good enough for her.”
Baato just nodded.
At that very moment, Manika walked in and Taam immediately shut his mouth.
Of course she had been eavesdropping for a moment. She really hoped Taam had been talking about her. It gave a little spark to her step to think so as she walked past the two slaves into the creator’s room. She shot Taam a quick glance.
“Get back to work”, she playfully called over her shoulder.
Taam just sighed.
Note: I know this seems to be a fairly short chapter, but it’s normal sized, I swear xD You’re probably way to used to my overlong chapters from the end of the last generation xD