|Written by:||Lisa Godin (bio, contact, other stories)|
|Story type:||Serial Fiction|
|Location:||Cleveland Ohio USA|
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|Written by:||Lisa Godin (bio, contact, other stories)|
|Story type:||Serial Fiction|
|Location:||Cleveland Ohio USA|
Ohnaà sat upon the high fur bed, back to Ojah, eyes closed, deeply relaxed and content while he cruised his Trader comb slowly through her luxurious waist-length ebony hair. He long ago sifted out every tangle but savored the sensation of comb sliding through silken locks glistening like polished onyx. Ojah found himself increasingly aroused as he smoothed his warrior's hair with a pale hand after each comb stroke the sensation of thick back sinew against his hand intoxicating.
Ohnaà's breath grew shallow over her mate's delicate, lingering touch. Abruptly she turned around.
Smoldering obsidian eyes locked upon his azure, Ojah dropped his comb, taken in by Ohnaà's piercing gaze.
"You stir the beast within me once more, my mate," the warrior whispered.
Wordless, with cool deliberation, Ojah lovingly caressed Ohnaà's mahogany-skinned arms, lingering over her colossal biceps, moving next to stroke her broad shoulders.
Ohnaà sighed deeply.
"You are so powerful, my warrior," Ojah cooed.
Unable to resist, Ohnaà eased Ojah onto his back, sinking him into silken furs and attacked with a passionate kiss. With a gentleness few thought Ohnaà capable of, she undressed Ojah, her strong hands caressing, probing.
Ojah groaned his pleasure.
Stripping, Ohnaà dove upon him, her kisses gradually becoming more urgent in mounting lust. She stroked his tawny tresses.
"You wish me to take you gently?"
"I enjoy your savageness, my warrior," Ojah breathlessly replied.
"I thought as much. I intend to take you hard whatever your answer."
Ohnaà mounted Ojah.
"Why do you ask then, my warrior?"
"You know I like to tease. My pleasure this night will be yours."
"As you wish."
"I do," Ohnaà hissed, her feral nature encouraged by Ojah's meekness. "You will enjoy it too!"
Ojah giggled, always willing to accommodate his warrior's nearly insatiable needs, the satisfying he knew to last several joyful hours.
Her demanding desires eventually quenched, Ohnaà wrapped herself in a fur and left the sleeping Ojah to sit before the fire to smoke her pipe. As she puffed her thoughts meandered to her good friend Trader Joseph whom she'd not seen for months following her run-in with his brother. She wondered how he was faring. She liked his woman, Kiddy, who had saved her life from a long-toothed cat attack, and entertained thoughts of what their daughter Xona was like.
Tapping out the ashes from her pipe she set it aside. Yawning grandly, eyes heavy, she shuffled back to bed and snuggled close to her gently snoring Ojah. Draping a muscled arm protectively over him, she fell asleep instantly.
Several unremarkable weeks passed with Ohnaà performing her duties as hunter and council moderator as well as assisting war chief Et-esh with the breaking of newly acquired wild horses.
Cho-hot and war chief Chooka, ending their routine scouting mission, rode into the corral where Et-esh and Ohnaà discussed an ill-tempered pinto mare determined to be ridden by no one. They hurriedly dismounted.
"Ohnaà," Chooka interrupted, "visitors approach camp. It is Trader Jo-teff."
"Who is he with?"
"A woman and girl child. They are stupid to all ride one horse, tiring it," Cho-hot growled.
Ohnaà ignored the criticism, one of an endless stream the dour warrior heaped against Trader Joseph.
"It is good the family of Jo-teff visits."
Cho-hot spat her contempt.
"Come, Chooka. Let us find a gambling game. At least there I will not be poisoned by the stench of Jo-teff."
Cho-hot stalked off with Chooka at her heels.
"One day, young one, Cho-hot will go too far with me."
"I thought you had spoken to her about treating Jo-teff respectfully."
"She is stubbornly defiant."
"She needs a mate to soothe her temper."
Ohnaà held up a fist.
"This mate may be the only one who can temper her. I grow tired of her bitterness toward Jo-teff."
Et-esh nodded. She, too, was weary of her friend's misplaced rancor.
Trader Joseph along with Kiddy and six-season-old Xona, both auburn-haired beauties, plodded into camp on their tired bay, warmly greeted with kind words, smiles and waves by passing Amazoni.
"See, Xona?" Kiddy pointed out, "there are plenty of children to play with."
"Do Amazoni children make friends easy, Papa?"
"I've been friends with Ohnaà since she was a child."
"Is she nice?"
"Momma said she scared her."
"I said when I first met Ohnaà she had a gruff way about her that started me slightly."
"You stay away from a warrior named Cho-hot, Xona. She's vicious," Joseph commanded tersely.
Curious about Cho-hot, Xona had no intention of obeying her father.
Ohnaà and Et-esh jogged to their guests and flanked the plodding bay.
"Dahò, my friends," Ohnaà brightly greeted. "Kid-deh, it is good we meet again. It has been a long time. I speak well your tongue now," she proudly announced. Her penetrating gaze locked upon the child. "You are Xo-nah."
The child nodded.
The warrior thumped a fist to her chest.
"I am Ohnaà."
Xona was greatly impressed with the Shesh-Amazoni's brawn and wild beauty.
"I am Et-esh."
"Hello, Et-esh. My husband has spoken very fondly of you."
"You're the horse warrior!"
Et-esh's pale eyes glittered. "Ah yah! I am a mighty horse warrior. I have a fine big herd, little one," she boasted.
"Papa, can I see Et-esh's horses?"
Trader Joseph nodded as he reined up.
"I am proud to show the daughter of Jo-teff my fine horses." Et-esh extended brawny arms. "I take big steps. You wish to be carried?"
Like a panther Xona sprang into the war chief's arms.
Et-esh went on her way, child-in-arms, speaking to her as if they had been friends for many seasons.
Joseph chuckled at the sight.
"I don't know which is more dangerous about Et-esh, Ohnaà, her prowess in battle or her wagging tongue."
"She has many talents. Come. Ojah's pot is full of boar stew."
Trader Joseph nudged his drained mount on, looking forward to the special touches of Ojah's cooking.
Xona was thrilled by Et-esh's horses of every size and color, and astounded by the myriad of unusual markings on the gaudy pintos. Gaining permission to pet the horses swarming around her, she laughed merrily at the beasts' comical reactions to being scratched on nose and necks. Foals nickered at the attention, many of them still wobbly on their stick legs.
"I keep you too long from your parents. We will go to Ohnaà's tepee."
On the way, Xona was attracted by the sight of four kneeling warriors throwing the gambling stones in turns, jabbering excitedly.
"Who's the one talking the loudest?"
"She is Cho-hot."
"I'm going to say hello."
Et-esh seized Xona's arm, yanking her back protectively.
"Cho-hot does not know your words. She is also very mean."
"Papa told me but I don't believe--"
"Believe, little one. We will pass her."
Et-esh's and Xona's passage did not go unnoticed by the glowering Cho-hot, who spat her resentment of the child's presence. One of her gambling friends tapped her on the arm to bring her attention back to the game. Throwing her stones, she lost the round. Angry at having been distracted, she slammed a fist upon the dusty earth.
"Little one, we will not tell Jo-teff about your wanting to see Cho-hot."
"Good idea. Papa would tan me for sure since he told me not to."
"Tan you? I do not know these words."
"I'd be whipped 'till I couldn't sit down."
"It is good you have Et-esh to watch over you."
Xona nodded vigorously.
Et-esh and Xona joined Ohnaà, her parents, and Ojah, who were enjoying heaping bowls of steaming, spiced boar stew. Ojah filled another bowl for Xona, who squeezed between her parents. Et-esh left without a word.
"Should I go after Et-esh, Papa?"
"She has a mate, Xo-nah," Ohnaà explained. "Dukwukka will have stew for her."
"But I want her here!" Xona whined.
"It is good to have Et-esh around. Always does she have much to say and she is friendly. But she has her own life. It must be respected. Et-esh like you. Before you go she will be near."
* * * * * * *
Et-esh sat at her fire smoking her pipe while Dukwukka built up the fire to warm his kettle of venison stew.
"I will give Jo-teff's daughter a mare as a present."
Et-esh put aside her smoldering pipe to receive her bowl of stew.
"The golden one with silver mane and tail."
"Have you asked Jo-teff if you may give such a fine horse?"
"Ah yah! I do not need to ask," Et-esh retorted. "Jo-teff would not dare insult me by refusing. Tomorrow I must groom the mare so she will be presentable." She wolfed down several heaping spoonfuls of stew, Dukwukka's stare irking her. "You do not agree with the giving of this horse?" she demanded.
"You are my warrior; therefore, I must abide by your decisions in all things."
Grunting satisfaction at Dukuwukka's capitulation, Et-esh dropped the subject and continued to eat heartily.
The long day at its end, Kiddy, Ojah, and Xona lay in blissful sleep beneath satiny furs.
Tapping out pipe ashes after a good smoke, Ohnaà stood.
"Let us walk, Jo-teff."
The twin moons, high and bright, hanging atop one another, appeared and disappeared behind wisps of smoky clouds propelled by crisp breezes, drenching the camp in silver light. Harmony bugs filled the night with their continuous mating hum.
"It is a good night, my friend."
Trader Joseph breathed deeply the invigorating air as he ambled.
"A very good night."
"It is one that makes me glad I live the Amazoni way."
"Here it is peaceful. I am in country that I know and love. My people are safe and well fed. There are no Trader fences to pen me in one place. Freedom is why the Amazoni way is a good way. "
Trader and warrior stopped at the corral.
"It is also a good night because your family shares my tepee."
They watched the milling and snorting horses a while before heading back to the lodge and beckoning sleep.
Midmorning, Et-esh walked briskly in the direction of the corral. In one hand she clutched a string of chattering boar teeth painted the Amazoni colors of red and black. In the other was clutched a grooming brush. A bridle hung over one broad shoulder. For an hour she meticulously groomed the palomino mare until her coat shone like a new penny and her mane and tail glistened like the finest polished silver. The string of painted boar teeth was secured to a thick lock of silver mane. Stepping back, Et-esh critically examined the horse.
"Now you are a fit present for the daughter of Jo-teff."
In agreement, Mare nickered and bobbed her tawny head, creating a clatter of the boar teeth in her mane.
The bridling complete, Et-esh affectionately rubbed the palomino's glossy neck.
"I will miss you, golden one."
Mare nuzzled Et-esh' neck and blew air into her ear. Tightly clutching the reins, the war chief led Mare out of the corral. Reaching Ohnaà's tepee, Et-esh popped her head in. "Come," she beckoned and popped back out.
Curious about Et-esh's uncharacteristic mysteriousness, Ohnaà, Trader Joseph, and his family filed out. The presentation of the magnificent palomino stunned the Trader family.
"She is one of my best, little one. She is strong, fast, and matches your spirit. You will ride her with pride. When you look at her, you will think of Et-esh, war chief and greatest horse breaker of the Amazoni."
Ohnaà spotted the string of painted teeth in the mare's mane and smiled.
"Et-esh honors you not only with this horse, but also with the boar teeth decorating her. They are powerful medicine, Xo-nah. Never does a warrior give away such charms. They will bring your horse luck and strength. Et-esh truly thinks you special!"
Grinning, Et-esh snatched Xona up, plunking her atop her horse. Fist overhead, holding tightly the animal's bridle, she screeched a shrill war cry.
"Now you, Xo-nah," Ohnaà explained "are a horse warrior like Et-esh. Her cry shouts it to all."
Laughing, Xona clapped her hands with glee.