Posted May 28 2012 - 09:08 PM
One People “…and so the Great Spirit descended from the heavens, carrying we, the ones called the Tohunga, to this paradise. We were separate, and without purpose, so the Great Spirit bestowed on us the three virtues: Unity, Duty, and Destiny.”Night had descended upon the bays of Ga-Wahi, the sun slipping past the endless ocean as the first stars begun to appear on the darkening skies. Po-Koro guards stood solitary on the lillypads, watching the sun disappear with a secret longing to follow it. To them, daylight brought the comfort of hard work. In the night, the goatdogs and their swarms would wander stealthily; at light, their attacks could be anticipated. So the guards stood in silence, their ears listening through the waterfall of the Naho bay and the chirp of insects, eyes desperately searching for the glow of a Bohrok in the shadows.Inside a hut, we Po-and Ga-Koran huddled together around Turaga Nokama, the chill of dusk dampening our spirits. Soft lights hung from the ceiling, attempting to lighten the mood. The Turaga ebbed and flowed like the tide, telling tales of peaceful times. Nokama had finished one of her stories, and now it was Onewa’s turn.Did they think we would simple-mindedly listen to the tales, though? The thought came from a dark corner of my mind. We were all hunched forward, eyes fixated on the elder as he spoke, but I doubted many of us were actually listening. I was among those thinking of what lay outside, those Pahrak lurking in the shadows of the area; halfheartedly listening, I found I couldn’t, because something in Onewa’s introduction seemed odd, as if there were something wrong in the Turaga’s statement.“Turaga,” I piped during an intermission. Several heads stirred, turning in my direction, along with a very surprised pair of robed storytellers. “You preach of unity in your tales, and here two villages sit. Yet you call us ‘Tohunga’, which means we are different people. If the Great Spirit gave us the three virtues and desired for us to be united, why did he give us a name that indicated otherwise? Why aren’t we called something like Matoran?” I expected anything but the uncomfortable silence that followed. There were no mutterings, no signs of support from my fellow Po-Koran. Nokama’s head was cocked in deep thought as she and Onewa considered my words. There was no deep reasoning behind my urge to speak, nor desire just to be noticed. I just wanted to note a point. And now I desired nothing other than to hide my brown Akaku and disappear once again into the crowd.After many moments in thought, the Turaga straightened themselves. My brothers and sisters turned intently toward them, to see how they would address the outspoken Matoran. Each second they paused I anticipated with dread.The lillypad rocked, swaying in the still bay, and an explosion could be heard from the Naho waterfall. My outburst was soon forgotten as those closest to the windows saw what happened, scrambling to flee from the stealthy, cunning, rapidly approaching Bohrok.*** The next few days fighting for Ga-Koro drove my outburst from everyone’s memories. I took the sidelines as the Onu-Matoran stepped up to defend us, and Jala and Takua took the spotlight. In a sense, I was glad to be shoved aside. But people still remembered. I went back to the shadows in my kiln, back to daily life, after the Toa defeated the Bahrag. My role as spectator continued as I watched the Bohrok Kal attack, and the Toa Nuva take off again on another quest. Somehow though, once the gossip of the heroes’ latest escapade grew old, people were coming together, not just in a time of need or danger, but a time to talk about something that we had missed in centuries of listening for the tales.The Turaga gathered us in Kini Nui once the Kal were defeated, claiming it was a great climax in our history. I was among the crowd, confused on what was going on, one of the many poking my head above the rest to get a good look at Turaga Vakama.“Matoran of Mata Nui!” he cried boldly, lifting his firestaff up to the sky. “The Great Spirit bestows a gift upon you all, as testament to your courage and their unity. The Time of Troubles has at last come to an end!” Many gasps and shouts of joy came from the people around me as they saw Takua and Jaller walk up beside the six elders. They were changed, taller and stronger, their bodies different. Some Le-Koran next to me jumped for joy when he realized he would soon be more limber, and an Onu-Koran was thrilled at knowing he would be stronger come the next sun. But I reveled in none of that, as I smiled with the rest. I was happy for a different reason.He called us Matoran.----------------------------I've been wanting to write this for a while, a storyline reason of how the name "Matoran" was introduced in 2003, and this was the result. Spent a year and a half getting stuck after going halfway through, but I finished it too late for the deadline for Flash Fiction Marathon Theme 1. It's currently 829 words with the title.