Kaido no Yume III

"Rest awhile, and I will bring you simpler food."

Kohath slept for a short while. Maro brushed out the rest of his fur, more gently so as not to disturb him. The sun dropped out of the sky, and he lay back and watched unfamiliar stars take their places. How long since people had begun to move across them?

His reverie came to an abrupt end when three rather heavy kits jumped on him at once.

"Ai!" "It's the strange creature!"

"I'm a wolf," he said.

"Worufo?" "Wuafu?" "Wu?"

With a rather dreamy realization he saw that they were not speaking the same language as he was, even though he and they seemed to understand each other quite well. But they still didn't know what a wolf was.

He felt very homesick.

"Ai, kits, let the wuafo rest."

"Aw, Maro!"

"It's okay," Kohath said. "And, my name is Kohath."

"K’ato?" "Khaisu?" "K’haiso?"

Nyaiya stopped dead short where she was, preparing food by the fire. "Kaido?" she shouted. "He is Kaido!"

Maro blinked in shock and stared at her as though her fur was melting. "Nyaiya, you cannot!"

But Nyaiya was already face down in front of Kohath and begging desperately. "He must be Kaido!"

"You know he said K’haiso!"

The wolf suddenly felt quite sick again. Nausea and a wave of pressure came over him. He was hurting and it made him angry. Nyaiya was clutching his paw, crying, and he wanted her to go away. He wanted to make her go away. He wanted to make her feel his pain.

He was about to snarl at her, to raise a paw to strike her.

The air around him changed, ever so subtlely. His heart sank and the pressure on his body left him; the pain doubled but he was no longer angry.

"You can call me Kaido—but please, let me alone to rest for awhile!"

Maro shooed away the kits and sent them to sleep. He walked Nyaiya back towards the fire, and after all was quiet he came back and sat beside Kohath, saying nothing.