“Waya!” Timpoochee called out to the top assistant among his traveling party.
“We must change our plans, change our direction,” he said. “We cannot yet return home as we hoped.”
“Forgive me, Ulagu,” replied Waya. “But, please, reconsider. This will be disappointing news to our brothers. We have been away from home for a long time. Our spirits are lifted because we escaped Yonega town - most of us - and are now returning to our mountains and families and home.”
Waya had become second man within the traveling party after Onacona’s death in Pensacola. He’d shown himself more than a few times to be smart and capable, loyal and wise for his age.
“Yes, I know this is not good news and we will all be disappointed to forestall for a while longer our return home,” Timpoochee answered. “But I have been visited by the Nunnehi. They have shown me the path.”
“And what did they show you, Ulagu? Clearly, they did not show you the path home.”
“They showed me a path toward a higher calling than simply returning home for now,” Timpoochee said.
“Did you notice, as we left the Yonega town, the spectacle of the party arriving by the road?”
“Yes, of course I did. We all did,” Waya answered. “It was hard to miss. Its leader was clothed as someone special.”
“Yes,” Timpoochee said. “He is. But did you also notice the tall, lanky slave at the end of the procession?”
“I did not,” Waya replied. “Why would I notice a single slave in a procession of slaves?”
“He is the reason we must return.” Timpoochee said.