and Bone - and Bone

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  • Sandand

    Bone

  • Sandand

    Bone

    D.Moonfire

    Broken Typewriter Press Cedar Rapids

  • Copyright2016D.MoonfireSomeRightsReservedCreativeCommonsAttribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike4.0International

    CoverartbyD.Moonfire

    Allcharacters,events,andlocationsarefictitious.Anyresemblancetopersons,past,present,andfutureiscoincidentalandhighlyunlikely.

    Somescenesandthemesthatappearinthisbook:deathofnamedcharacters,deathofanamedchild,deathofanimalsbothnamedandunnamed,graphicalviolence,personaltragedy,physicalabuse,andtorture.Thereissexbutnoexplicitscenes.Thereisnorape.

    BrokenTypewriterPress50011stAveSESte105#243CedarRapids,IA52402

    BrokenTypewriterPresshttps://broken.typewriter.press/

    ISBN978-1-940509-25-9

    Version1.1.0

    https://broken.typewriter.press/

  • ToJennyandJackie

    Afamilysplityearsago.Sisterslost

    butnotforgotten.Anidlequestion.OnceagainReconnected.

  • Miwfu

    This novel is set in the Mifuno Desert where the nativelanguageisMiwfu.Namesinthislanguagearesignificantlydifferent from English, so here is a short guide onpronunciationandusage.

    The biggest difference is that every name is gendered,whichisidentifiedbytheaccentonthepenultimatesyllable.Therearethreetypesofaccents:

    Grave(asinhruforstallion)isatinytickthatgoesdowntotheright.Thegraveaccentindicatesamasculineaspect,eitherinphysicalgender,size,orpower.Nameswithgraveaccentseitherendinalowerpitchortheentirewordisspokeninalowertone.

    Macron(forexample,hruforcolt)isabaroverthevowel.Thisisaneuterterm,usedformanygender-freewordsorexpressionswithinthelanguage.Itisalsousedformechanicaldevices,abstractconcepts,andchildrenbothhumanandbeast.Macronsarespokenasalongvowelordrawingoutthewordjustabeatlongerthannormal.

  • Acute(hruformare)isatinytickthatgoestotheupperright.Theacuteindicatesfeminineaspectsoftheword.Itcanrepresentcontrolwithoutpowerorprecision.Thesewordsendonahighnoteortheentirewordisspokeninahigherpitch.

    Theonlyinstanceswhereaccentsarentusedisadjectivesorindicationofownership.So,ifavalleyisownedbytheclanShimusgo,itisknownasShimusogoValley.

    The names themselves are phonetic. A syllable is alwaysfromaconsonantclusterto thevowel.Forexamples:Mi.w.fu(IPA/mi.wa./),Shi.mu.s.go(/i.m.so.o/),andDe.s.chu(/de.so.t/). The only exception is the letter n which isconsideredpartofthesyllablebeforeitwhennotfollowedbyavowel. For example, ga.n.r.ko (/a.e.ko/) and ka.n.ko (/ka.ne.ko/).

    Miwfu has no capital letters, they are added to satisfyEnglishconventions.

  • Previously

    Sand and AshstartedwithRutejmoasanoutsidertohisownclan. After the events of Sand and Blood, he had beenacceptedasanadultoftheclanbutnotuniversallywelcomed.Hefoundacourierroutewhichheranalone,andspentlittletime in Shimusogo Valley. In his hours alone he nursed acrushonMikryothenightwarriorwhoattackedhiminthepreviousbook,onlytosavehimlater.

    Despite his avoidance of the valley, a young woman,Mapbyo,developedacrushofherownonhim.Therestoftheclan tried to subtly discourage Rutejmos fantasies for awoman he hadnt seen in a decade and encourage hisattentiononthegirl,whotheyfeltwasabetterchoiceforhimasalifepartner.

    Things changed when Mapbyo went on her own rite ofpassage. When she survived, she emulated Rutejmowhichrevealed the animositythat had grownbetweenhim and hisolderbrother,Deschu.DeschutreatedRutejmoasapoisontotheclan,mainlydrivenbyRutejmosinabilitytofollowthesamepathastheothers.

    AfterMapbyosentranceintoadulthood,theclandecidedto strongly encourage a relationship between her and

  • Rutejmobytheirusualmethod:takingthemintothedesertand abandoning them to find love. This failed when theyarrived at Wamifuko Citywhere Rutejmo met up with hisdecade-long crush, Mikryo. Lost in his own fantasies, heabandoned his own people for days while rekindling hisrelationshipwithher.Whenitended,shecasthimouttogobacktohislife.

    Sullen,hereturnedtohisfamilyonlytobeattackedbyhisbrotherandkickedoutoftheclanforayear.Hequicklyfoundthatbeingwithoutaclanwasadeathsentenceinthedesertand only Mapbyo, acting in direction violation of the clanelders,wasabletosave himasshecaughtup withhimandprotectedhimagainsttheostracizationofbeingclan-less.

    During this time, Rutejmo was given various chores andtasks to complete, such as taking out garbage and burningcorpses.Thelatterbecamemoreimportantashelearnedtherituals of tending to the dead. Later, he would meet withanother kojinmi, a caretaker of the dead. He embraced histasks as a comforter to the dying and the one who couldhandlethecorpses.

    The Shimusgos goal of getting the two together finallysucceededwhenRutejmofellforMapbyo.Theytriedtoavoidreturning to Shimusogo Valley but were eventually forcedback. Rutejmo was still ignored as someone without a clan,which led to him almost killing himself and fleeing forever,onlystoppingwhenhisfriendsskirtedarounddisobeyingtheeldersandencouragedhimtostaythroughsubtlebehaviors.

    Months later, Mapbyo and he were expecting their firstchild.Unfortunately,anaccidentcausedhertolose herchildtomiscarriageandoneofRutejmosbestfriendsdied.Intheprocess,Deschurealizedthathisbrotherhadhisownpathtofollow,whichwasgreatlydifferentfromthepathofawarrior.

  • The rest of the year passed and Rutejmo was finallyallowed to return to the clan. His first words were to askMapbyotomarryhim.

  • Chapter1

    Running Away

    The clans understand the masculine powers of Tachra and Chobre. Theyhave no sub tle ty com pared to the fe mi nine whis pers of Mi fno.

    Ko re chyo ki Ba ro shko

    screech filled the air, radiating away from the sharp cliffsthat surrounded Shimusogo Valley. Even ripped from a humansthroat,thesoundtraveledfurtherthanamerecrycouldevermatch. Itrolledalongthesanddunesandpasttheshortridgesofrockspepperingthedesertaroundthevalley.

    Rutejmo froze when the sound slammed into him. Thescreech demanded action, forcing him to focus on the cliffsthatframedthehomevalley.Thesoundcontinuedpasthim,buthehearditrepeatinginhisheadlikeamemoryrefusingtobeforgotten.Heclenchedhishand,andtheleatherballhewasabouttothrowslippedfromhispalmandlandedonthegroundwithamutedthud.

    Arodjustoversixteenfeetfromhim,Mapbyoturnedtolooktowardthevalley.Hecouldseeherfromthecornerofhisvision, her nearly black skin hard to miss against the brownsand.Hewantedtolookather,butthescreechpulledhisatten

    A

    1

  • tion to the valley where a crowd already gathered around agoldenflame.

    J-Jmo? whispered Mapbyo. What happened? Whocalledus?

    Rutejmo couldnt tear his eyes away from the cliff. At theentranceofthevalley,betweenthetwolargebannersthatdeclared the Shimusogo Clans home, the fire continued tostretchupuntilitbecameavortexofflamesandwind.Tinymotes of light spun around it; if he were closer, he knew hewouldseetranslucentfeathers.Chimpu,heanswered.Onlytheclanswarriorswerecapableofdisplayingsuchpower,andallbutChimpuwereoutprotectingtheclanscouriers.

    Papa?asked Kitpi,Rutejmosson.Thesmallvoiceofthefive-year-oldcarriedoverthesands.

    Rutejmoforcedhimselftolookawayfromthevalley,strugglingagainsttheneedtorunhome.Hissonwasoverachain,sixty-six feet, awayholding his hands up while waiting fortheball.UnlikeRutejmoandMapbyo,hedidntseemaffectedbythescreechstillechoinginRutejmoshead.

    Curious, Rutejmo glanced over his shoulder to Mapbyo.Hiswifestoodonhertoestolookoverthedunestoseeintothe valley. Her orange skirt fluttered in the breeze exceptwherePirma,theirthree-year-olddaughter,clungtoherleg.The little girls black hair snapped in the wind, bouncing againsttheorangefabric.Atthefarendofherbraidwasasmallmetalringthatpreventeditfromflyingup.

    Weshouldgo,Mapbyosaid,theothersarealreadyheadingback.

    Rutejmoturnedbacktothevalley.Cominginfromalldirectionswerethecouriersoftheclan.Theyallranaftertranslucentsmallbirds,themanifestationofShimusgo;thespeedoftheirsprintskickinguplongplumesofsandanddust.

    D.Moonfire

    2

  • Mapbyotookasteptowardthevalley.Jmo?Sheusedtheshortenedformofhisname,anameonlyusedamongfriendsandfamily.

    He hesitated as a different pressure arose in him. A commandfarmoresubtlethanthescreech.Heshookhisheadandheld his breath, straining to hear something over the breezeandshiftingsands.

    A flicker of movement shot out from the valley. His gazecaughtit,andhewatchedasitsailedacrossthesands,leavingno footprints or dust behind. It was a shimusogo dpa, thesmallbirdsthattheclanchased,butitmovedfarfasterthantheothers.ItcoveredthemilebetweenRutejmoandthevalleyinamatterofseconds.

    He spun as it passed, watching it sail across the sand. Aprickle of fear surfaced as he felt magic gathering along thepath the dpa took. With a gasp, he spun around. The smallbirdalwaysranjustasfastastherunnerwhochasedit,whichmeantthatChimpuwouldbepassingsoon.SteppingtowardMapbyo,hecalledout.GetTpi!

    Mapbyo frowned at Rutejmo and clutched Pirma. W-What!?

    Shield Tpi!Icantgettohimfastenough!heyelledjustasanothertranslucentbird ranpasthim.Hecouldfeeltheenergygriphim,andhesprintedafterit.HeacceleratedintoablurandcoveredthedistancetoPirmainaheartbeat.

    When he dropped to his knees to sweep up his daughter,Mapbyowasalreadygoneinacloudofsand.Thewindofherpassingwhippedathisfaceuntilhebentoverhisdaughter.

    R-Rutejmo? whispered his daughter, her softvoice loudinthespacebetweenhisarms.

    Closeyoureyes,hecommandedandpulledhertighttohisbarechest.

    SandandBone

    3

  • Sheburiedherfaceintotheblackcurlsthatdustedhispectorals and sternum. Her tiny arms wrapped around his sideandsheclutchedtight.

    Hold on, he whispered into her dark hair and held hertight.Shesgoingto