Queen's Notes: This chapter was co-written with In The Light, most of the chapters in this story are.
Fire From The Past
Le-Koro huts weren't really 'huts' at all despite them being called that. There were in fact more like roomy cabins, half built into the trunk of the great trees Le-Koro was made on. Inside the bed system was different as well, from what Lhikan was used to, more long cubbies dug further in. There were pillow like bags filled with soft moss. Currently Lhikan was sharing living space with the other three Matoran in Tamaru's home.
The Le-Matoran and Takua had let Lhikan and Macku have the only two cubby-beds while they were in hammocks. Tamaru was snoring softly, the story keeper looking about to fall out of his 'net.'
Lhikan let out a yawn from his bed, grateful for the nice long sleep in a warm bed, even more grateful that he hadn't awoken in a pile of snow. Then there was the fact that he had no work to go to today either, causing the Matoran to grin to himself at his luckiness.
Lifting his head slightly he got a look at the others and snorted softly with a chuckle on seeing Takua about ready to fall out of his hammock.
Another yawn was heard, sounding a bit more 'delicate' in the way that meant it was a female voice that was doing the yawning, "Ow... my foot." Macku said, voice low but from the cubby-bed under Lhikan.
Whirring softly as he moved, Lhikan smirked downward and over the edge, knowing Macku was awake, "Too much dancing last night?"
"More like someone stepped on me too much." The Ga-Matoran made a face, scrubbed at her mask before looking up and blinking blue and silver eyes up at the Ta-Matoran. "Sorry about the random glomping last night."
"It's no bother," Lhikan replied with a shake of the head, still looking down at her. He smiled, "It probably won't be the last since I look like Jaller." By now he was realizing that he would be doing a lot of correcting while on Mata Nui.
Macku shifted so she was on her back but at a slight angle to keep Lhikan in sight and relax at the same time, "Maybe, but you're not...well, Guard-ish." She smiled and gave a soft giggle.
"Guard-ish?" Lhikan repeated, obviously finding amusement in the word. He laughed quietly. "Well I am a simple crafter, nothing special. Could you tell me about your village, Macku?"
"Crafters are always in need no matter the island or type." Macku said nodded, and then smiled, "Ga-Koro is a floating village, we live on and in the protection of Lake Naho...which come to think of it merges into the bay."
The Ta-Matoran above her suddenly went quiet, his one yellow hand gripping the edge of the bed. "Naho? Why... why use that name?"
I can't mean the same thing. It's not related to my Naho, Lhikan was thinking to himself, She's gone, she left eighty years ago with that Toa... maybe it's just coincidence. Yeah that's it.
"That's the name that was carved into the rocks at the bottom-stone, so Turaga Nokama named it that." Macku shrugged, "I like that name though. Minoku named her little girl that too I think."
"It's a beautiful name," Lhikan muttered, seeming to try and relax more. Though his voice and eyes let on that he was clearly thinking of something else, or at least a million kio away in thought, Naho... it's been so long.
"We live on lily pads." Macku said after a bit, realizing and guessing that Lhikan was reminded of someone back at his home - probably a Ga-Matoran with a name like that of the lake? "Right against the water bluffs so we're ported on three sides now after the Bohrok attacks. The Po- Le- and Ta-Koros helped us with building the wall. Maybe if you can, you can come see."
"...I'm sure I will if I can," Lhikan answered after a few moments, a slight hum echoing his words. After a little while longer he sat up more. "I wonder how Turaga Matau is doing. He didn't look too good last night, when Toa Lewa carried him away."
"Something happened to the Turaga?" Macku yelped, she twisted and leapt up to her feet. Her yelp startled to other two sleepers, making them yip, Takua falling out and Tamaru getting caught in the webbing of his hammock.
The Ta-Matoran sprang up quickly and hopped down to the floor, not yet bothering to help Takua or Tamaru as he reassured the girl, "Toa Lewa took him to the healers last night. I'm sure he is doing much better today!"
"Er...little help?" Tamaru's voiced asked, making Macku pause to look over at the dangling Matoran and Takua who was sitting up, rubbing his bare face and blinking blearily before fitting his Kanohi back into place.
"Oh," Lhikan made an embarrassed sounding hum and came over to help the dangling Le-Matoran and set him upright with his feet on the floor. Of course it had taken a few moments to detangled him from the net. Lhikan looked to Takua. "I forgot they didn't know about Turaga Matau. Do you think we could possibly see how he is doing?"
"Wha...?" Takua asked, and it became apparently he wasn't awake at all never mind that he was sitting up.
Macku moved to help the story keeper up right as Tamaru leaned on Lhikan, not fully aware either just yet. "Maybe some tea first." the Ga-Matoran said.
Lhikan glanced at Tamaru and smiled. "Of course," he lightly yawned, reminding himself that he hadn't been awake that long either.
It didn't take too long for the jar holding a blend of morning tea to be located and mixed with water. Thankfully the tea mixture didn't have to be boiled or heated to steep, nor very long. The original maker of this type of tea seemed to have taken into account that tired Matoran should not be messing with fire when they were still trying to wake up. So the tea was easy to make and with varying amounts of sweetener added, Tamaru and Maku had the most
"Okay, every one conscious now?" Maku asked looking at the other three male Matoran.
She got nods in return. "Very much," Lhikan answered, though he was prodding Takua in the shoulder.
"Okay, let's go see the Turaga if we can," The Ga-Matoran nodded, stepping out into the warm sunshine and smiling dispite herself as she looked around to reaffirm where she was.
"This way," Tamaru said tugging his friend with him in the right direction. Behind Takua gave one last yawn and stretch, but as soon as he walked into the sunlight, he seemed instantly more awake.
Le-Koro was just as beautiful in the day than in the evening. The sunlight seemed to make it more vivid in color and one could almost feel the natural energy within it. Lhikan sighed deeply, tilting his head slightly at the sun's warmth, enjoying it.
"I always feel better in the light." Takua said, but it was low and more to himself.
Lhikan's head tipped back, he had heard Takua. "I suppose it is better than darkness," he said quietly.
"Depends if your an Onu Matoran or not!" Takua laughed, "Hey, Tamaru, wait up for us!"
Now that the news on Turaga Matau had been leaked by Lhikan, the Matoran were kind of anxious to find out how the elder was doing. The two Ta-Matoran ran to join the Le-Matoran and Macku. Lhikan was still hoping for answers, if the Turaga had any for him.
They found him at his own hut, larger then the normal ones for Matoran, sitting outside on a freshly carved white-wooden seat. The Turaga's staff was leaning against the wall beside him and there was an older Ga-Matoran healer standing beside the elder and eyeing him to be sure he was drinking his tea.
Lhikan and his new companions approached, having no idea that the previous night's recent 'sudden illness' was Lhikan's fault. He had no doubt appeared something like a 'ghost from the past' to poor Matau.
"Turaga," the gold-masked Matoran greeted. "How are you doing?"
"Sure-" The Turaga paused, eyed the Ga-Matoran back and gave a tired chuckle, "Better. Though Nokamasister has ordered several days peacerest." He sighed a long suffering sigh.
"It's for your own good Turaga." The healer said.
"Yes, yes." Matau motioned for the group to come closer.
Lhikan shared a glance with Takua before they went forward with the others. "I'm glad to hear that, Turaga," the Matoran said.
"As am I!" Turaga Matau laughed before folding his hands in his lap, "Now, for you, waytraveling firespitter. You are quite displaced, yes indeed."
Lhikan blinked. "I know... Miko Nui must be very far from here if we haven't yet heard about how bad the Makuta are now." The Matoran sighed.
The Turaga made and interesting face, "Sorrybad Darktime we have here...but there is bighthope." Leaning foreword without getting up to pat Lhikan on the arm, "You, brave little firespiter must seek out the other wiseold Turaga on the island, and the stones that will let the KoraHeroes open the gateway to send you back to your homeKoro."
Matau straightened up, "You will find, firespitter, clues along the way of why you are here."
The Ta-Matoran let this information settle into his mind, turning questions over and over as well. "If there is supposed to be a gateway... one that brought me here, and stones that will open it again... then how could I have gotten here in the first place? There weren't any stones back home I don't think." He frowned. Something else didn't seem to add up... like Matau's explanation was too easy.
"Ah, the power stones are not for opening, they are for the KoraHeroes." Matau corrected, lifting a finger, "Matoran can find them, but Kora cannot. The young Elementals seek out the darksickness and corruption, open and seal gateways. I do not know how you came to our islandhome Lhikan, for this oldone is here, and not there."
"I think I understand, Turaga, about the stones and gateway. As for other things, I don't," Lhikan sighed. "But then, I guess I can't help that. How do I find these stones? Where do I look for them?"
Seriously, he had wound up here to play scavenger hunt? ...well it was better than working all day, he would give it that. It would be nice to see the rest of this island, too; but Lhikan's suspicions were still surfacing, though he kept them to himself.
"My firebrother, the Turaga of Ta-Koro will have that answer for you." Matau shrugs, "Even wiseold Turaga do not have all knowledge young firespitter!" He laughed, and then his gaze softened, "I do know, Lhikan, that you have a brightstrong heart, and greathope destiny to fulfill."
The gold-masked Matoran met Matau's gaze, but his eyes were filled with mostly uncertainty. But there was a hint of doubt. Not the kind that said 'I have no destiny' but the kind that wondered if Matau was keeping something from him. "...Thank you, for telling me this, Turaga. It feels good to have some answers." He sent Takua a smirk. "Guess I'm going to Ta-Koro."
Takua grinned back at him before looking back at the Le-Koro Turaga with a tilted head.
"It may not seem like it, firespitters," Matau sighed, propping his chin on the heel of one hand, "But time will clear the waypath for you."
Lhikan hummed in thought, arms crossed. He could very well be here for more than a few days. He turned back to Takua. "How far is Ta-Koro from here?"
"By land, air or Onu-highway?" Takua asked back at once, "I can make it on land in a day or a day and a half with Pewku."
"By airflying less." Tamaru added in, "If you don't like the darktunnles."
Lhikan smirked. "I think I might like to stick to land for now." He still wasn't too ready for heights yet. Not after what Tala had done with him the other day.
Takua laughed, "Pewku will like that," Turning he bowed to the green elder, "Thank you Turaga, even if it was a bit confusing advice..."
"Run off you!" Turaga said, waving his arms at the Matoran, though there was not real bite in his words or eyes. "Let this wiseold one- oh frag my tea..."
With a small grin, Lhikan and the others turned and left the elder after giving a bow in respect. The Ta-Matoran shook his head. "He's very... nice," He wasn't sure how often it was that a Turaga used the word 'frag' but nonetheless... Matau was a fun guy.
"At least he's not as...colorful as Turaga Onewa." Macku said with a sigh, "You two should get some food and a proper weapon for Lhikan. Can you handle Le-Matoran spears or axes Lhikan?"
The Matoran nodded. "Weapons are not unfamiliar at home. Though I think I might do better with a spear since I am more used to that kind of blade." He momentarily wondered about this Turaga Onewa, but told himself he'd probably see him at some point during his stay on the island.
"I'll quickgrab you one from the armory Lhikanfriend." Tamaru offered, giving the Ta-Matoran a clap on the shoulder and darting off, and off the platform.
"Net jumping." Macku grinned, "He'll find us!"
"Find us?" Lhikan echoed. "Who'll find us?"
"Tamaru!" Macku rolled her eyes and laughed before pushing Lhikan ahead of her to the elevators.