Al Fin Affictionado

A Combination of Original Fiction and Reviews of Fiction Interesting to Al Fin and Contributors All Works Copyright as of publish date, AlFin2100 blog syndicate

Location: North America

Primary interest is seeing that the best of humanity survives long enough to reach the next level.

Friday, April 20, 2007

I Am Here--Where Are You?

To make more babies, we must have both male and female. That is what everyone was saying, but I don't think we younger ones understood. We were all girls. That is all we knew, except for Ko's sick grandfather, who always lay in bed, lost to the world.

Ko would sometimes take small groups of us girls into her grandfather's room. Ko lifted the blankets to show us his manhood, like she was displaying a fabulous jewel or a grand feast. We all giggled, but when Ko asked us, we were too shy to touch it. He is dead now.

The older boys had gone with the men to find others like us. They had listened to a radio signal asking for help. The signal said that savages who spoke a different tongue were attacking them. They said they needed our help. The men have been gone now for over five years.

There have been no children for more than four years now. All the younger children were girls. No one knew why. Old Hana says that it was something in the fish, or the seaweed. She said it was something from the old wars, long ago. Before, when there were boy babies, most of them died before their first year. Now there are no babies at all.Hana is our healer. She was also our midwife, but there has been no need for that service lately. Hana is old, and is training Jun to take her place. She told my mother that she tries to teach Jun how to midwife, but Jun asks her why? Without men there can be no babies. Hana tries to tell her that the men may return, but Jun will not listen. Among the men who left on the rescue mission were Jun's husband and 14 year old son.

My father died before I reached my second year, in a fishing accident. I don't remember him, but my mother says he was a happy man. She says he wanted to teach me to fish, when I was older. Mother says this would have been against the traditions of the clan, since only boys may learn to fish. Mother says that father had many new ideas that were different from the traditions. She says he told her the clan would have to change to survive.

Of course, now the women must fish, for there are no men. Because the women were not taught the way of the sea when they were young, they only go out when the sea is calm. Mother says there is not as much fish to eat now as there was before. She says some of the boats cannot be repaired, and there are not enough women to crew them anyway, so that even on good days the clan cannot send as many boats out.

We eat a lot of rice. Although the fields are small, there are not nearly as many to feed now. The women are very good rice farmers, and the harvests have been good, mother says.

I Am Here--Where Are You?


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