Sunday, 24 February 2013

Tui calls on Ahuahu (No. 86)

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



This saga running now for some time is set in pre-colonial New Zealand (Aotearoa) during Queen Victoria's reign, monarch of the expanding British Empire. In this chapter Ahuahu now head man of the village of Black Sands has been procrastinating over the future of his eldest daughter Hekehoru who wants to marry a man in the village, while trying to appease the colonists to ensure his village stays secure.




Tui and Hekehoru had been seeing each other for some time. Yet they had not married. Ahuahu had always told Hekehoru she should wait a little longer. Ahu grieved for her daughter Hekehoru as she knew she wanted to marry Tui and even she thought he would be a good husband but Ahuahu could not forget Tui’s elder brother Paikea and his treatment of Moana and his foolish opinions and decisions in his short life. Ahuahu considered himself to be a surrogate father to Moana and felt guilty that he had not prevented the outcome.

Tui loved Hekehoru tenderly and even other village council members thought he would be suitable to join them soon but Ahuahu was not convinced. Eventually Hekehoru spoke to Ahu.

“Help me Ahu, you are my mother, I am your elder daughter. I should be married. You know I have found the man to be my husband. You let me see him yet Ahuahu will not let me marry. Soon I shall surely bring his baby home. Please speak to Ahuahu for me.”

Later that night when Ahu and Ahuahu were together Ahu whispered to him. “It is time to let Hekehoru go. Tui is not Paikea, you know that. She weeps for him, they should be married and soon. Surely the trial you have put them through is over. He is sensible; he is faithful only to her. Please let him speak to you again.”

Ahuahu grunted, “Go to sleep Ahu, but I will tell Hekehoru to send Tui to me. But I will promise nothing.”

“Perhaps Hatiti and I will promise nothing either.” She replied.

Ahuahu grunted in reply “Let me think on it.”

The next morning before he went fishing Ahuahu spoke to Hekehoru. “Daughter you are very precious to me. You were born in the woods there” pointing to his left, “just up from the beach and I was there to see you take your first breath. I should not have been there but I was. I love all my children but with you I have that special bond. I will do anything to protect you but now I know it is time to let you go and it hurts me so much.”

“Why was I never told?” Hekehoru said as she burst into tears. She wrapped him in her arms hugging him tight.

“You are being told now. When is the best time to admit to breaking a tapu, Hekehoru? I have decided that this is the time for me. All my children are precious but with you it is different, the gods changed me that day. Send Tui to me after I have got back from fishing.”

Later that afternoon when Ahu returned Tui was waiting for him. Ahuahu looked him up and down and then said hearing the murmur of voices elsewhere in the whare. “We will talk in the meeting house there are too many ears in this house.” So they walked across to the village meeting house and then sat down together.

In the fading light of the afternoon Tui once again professed his love for Hekehoru. He promised to look after her and give as her many sons as she wanted. He would stay in the village, work hard and make her happy. He would even give Ahuahu some gifts that belonged to his father the old chief. Ahuahu merely nodded at all that Tui was saying. Then put up his hand for Tui to stop talking. “I need more, Tui.”

Tui looked around the meeting house and saw the old weapons and ornaments from years ago on the walls. He got up and seized a ceremonial club from the wall; it was a Toki Pou Tangata. This was weapon with an intricately carved handle and a greenstone blade affixed.

“This was a gift to my father Ahuahu. So you could say it is mine now as I am his only remaining son. It is my gift to you.” Here Tui paused then continued looking Ahuahu directly in his eyes, “If I ever I hurt Hekehoru you may kill me with it.”

There was silence for a few seconds then Tui continued “I will give up my life for her, I want none other than her.”

Ahuahu nodded, “Then she is yours. You may present me with this gift at the wedding ceremony. You need to give me nothing more.” He then leaned over held Tui by the shoulders and rubbed noses with him.

As they walked back out of the building Ahuahu said, “Arrange the wedding date with Ahu so that your sisters who live far away can come to the wedding with their families.” Then as an afterthought he said, “Come back with me now to tell Hekehoru and have a meal with us, but I expect it will be a noisy one with much woman’s talk.”

Tui nodded and said, “Ahuahu, I will not fail you.”

“Remember Tui how much Hekehoru means to me, I do not want to kill the man she loves, so do not test me.”

Read about Hekehoru's birth by clicking Hekehoru in the labels bar below.

Tapu - Taboo, forbidden.

Toki Pou Tangata - Intricately carved weapon with a greenstone blade



  1. Have we spent two years in Black Sands..i like the addition of the photo..i can imagine how you collect the tools you need to keep your story alive..

  2. So powerfully imaginative. Remarkable...

  3. yes it is remarkable...I admire your ability to stick with the story

  4. Two years have passed and your story is as addictive as ever. I wonder were we will be in 2015!

  5. I so look forward to your Sunday morning update on life at Black Sands... this was a wonderful chapter, a devoted father and a man determined in his love. It made me smile, and I pray all goes well for them as the story continues to unfold. It takes real talent to carry a storyline this long and keep it fresh, amazing job Old Egg!

  6. Like most of the others, I too am surprised that two years have gone by, and yet your episodes are still coming up with an amazing freshness, and unflagging interest.
    I sometimes fail to comment, but I always read them; keep them coming.

  7. wow two years. congrats!
    you continue to inject new twists, developments and sub plots to make your novel interesting.

    keep on writing about love, black sands, family, etc.

  8. back from 2 shoes in Texas and I certainly do not think this story qualifies as representing procrastination. I would say it is an example of what you can do if you do not procrastinate. great effort.

  9. I sure hope that last little bit is NOT foreshadowing. I think he's perfect for her, and that Ahuahu is being over protective. But the gift is perfect.

  10. This is a hard story to write, isn't it. I am sure this episode will end happy.

    We visited a Maori village in Aotearoa this January, after European settlement of New Zealand.

    We were welcomed by a ceromony which was completed by our rubbing noses with these Maori people.