Saturday, 17 November 2012

Has Tangaroa started fishing again? (No. 73)

The continuing story of Ahu and Ahuahu her husband in a Maori village in Aotearoa before European settlement of New Zealand. (Missed an episode? Click on Ahu in the labels bar for previous posts.)

Hinewai returned to help the priest speak to the village council again. When she called in on Ahuahu to check if the pakeha had arrived he merely shrugged his shoulders and shook his head. Hatiti came up to Hinewai and hugged her. “You are going to look after the young pakeha priest again, are you, Hinewai?”

“Shush!” Hinewai whispered, “Come let us go outside and talk.” So the two sisters walked together down by the trees and then sat down on the ground. Even though they were older now Hatiti still started to fuss over Hinewai and to smooth her hair and push the wisps away from her face just as she used to as a teenager. Hinewai just sat and enjoyed the attention then said “Has Tangaroa started fishing again.”

Hatiti laughed outright. “Do you mean have they finally stopped making love? I know let’s go and find out.”

“You have seen them though?”

Hatiti nodded “Horowai came down the other day, looking very pleased with herself. Come on let’s walk up there, Ahuahu will send one of the children if the Pakeha priest comes. I wonder whether Rauoro wants to come as well to see his sister?”

Hinewai shook her head, laughing, “Not if she is going to talk to us about Tangaroa.”

“She wouldn’t would she?”

“She might to me,” replied Hinewai.

“Hinewai, what did you teach her?”

At this Hinewai just smiled “She just asked me about men, so I told her.”

As they walked up to the Hot Springs, Hatiti sighed “I loved Kaihutu my first husband but he wasn’t at all like Ahuahu.”

“You never have talked about either of them with me before. Can you now?”

Hatiti thought for a moment. “No, every moment with Ahuahu is precious for me but I cannot even share those thoughts with Ahu, but he is a good and loving husband.” She paused then said “I wanted you to be happy too, Hinewai. Time is passing and one should never leave unsaid what should be said. Are you happier now?”

“I am not sure about that. I don’t really want to talk about my past. Luckily you do not ask. You just love me like the older sister you have always been. If I do mention something about my other life you do not judge me and probably keep silent and do not tell anyone else. When Torangi and I were sent away from Black Sands I was both very angry and unbelievably sad. But now I just want to return here and thanks to Ahuahu I can. I still feel this is my home but Torangi is not sure. But there, I have always been talked about, and I can accept that. He is happy in the forest with Hauku. But I feel I can atone for the past here but not there.”

“Would he release you from the marriage?”

With that Hinewai smiled “I am not tied, Hatiti. Torangi and I had no formal wedding. I have not been tied since my first dreadful marriage. That man would have killed me in the end.”

“What were the gods thinking, Hinewai? I should have married him but for that tidal wave after the earthquake. What was his name, Tui wasn’t it?” She paused then said “It is strange, I think Paikea’s brother Tui, the old chief’s second son is looking at Hekehoru now. We will have to watch him.”

Hinewai nodded “I stole that other sadistic Tui from you all those years ago and found that I had married a killer whale but his parents just didn’t care.”

As they walked into the Hot Springs settlement they were both holding hands.

Horowai ran up to them smiling. “I am so glad you have both come to see me but Tangaroa has just gone fishing.” Immediately both Hatiti and Hinewai burst out laughing.

“Why are you laughing?”

“Let’s go in inside, we will tell you.” Hatiti said as the both hugged Horowai and rubbed noses with her.


  1. So the honeymoon is over! Well, they do need to eat sometime.

  2. I like this interpretation of silence..makes it seem more fun somehow..

  3. Enjoyed your story! I will have to go back to catch up on earlier episodes!

  4. I was somewhat lost on this because I don't know the backstory or what has preceded this scene. But I liked the details. I assume you are familiar with Maori customs and history. I know a little, but not enough to call you on anything.

    I am writing a novel based on my experiences living in Brazil, but it takes place in a fictitious country, because I want to be able to fabricate things that might not resemble the real Brazilian culture.

    My response to the SILENCE prompt can be found here: (an excerpt from a different in-progress novel than the one I mentioned above.)

  5. So they came up for air just in time for company. Probably got hungry.

    What a difference time and experience has made for both sisters.

  6. Ahh, the talk of women.. of husbands, love and sadness. Something time has never changed. Your writing is so true to life Old Egg, you know human nature well!

  7. enjoyed this read by itself and now will go back to catch up

  8. The last line was the kicker, Robin. Signal that honeymoon is ended. I just hope that poor girl can walk! Keep 'em coming, Robin. I'm in love with your AlterWorld.


  9. Very interesting, the happenings unfolded in Hinewai’s and Hatiti’s conversation in this episode. Of course I’m very curious to know what will come of Father John’s ill-timed visit to Black Sands, what with Hinewai’s cheek in addressing him as she did in Episode 72. Oh and poor Haeata! I caught up with Episode 71, too, and I feel so bad for her, a teenager having to marry a much older man… But! You know I will be watching Tangaroa to see if he fancies adding her to his collection of one!

  10. Really enjoy playing catch up to the story. I love how you are very gently (but, firmly) introducing the priest and religious bit each chapter. Such a shame their way of life had to all end so badly.
    Really enjoyed these.

  11. I love the interaction of the women in this episode. It's a wonderful well written saga.

  12. Someone got hungry! No, we should never put off speaking our heart to our loved ones.