The second story in the Time of Nativia Series. Please feel free to contact me if you wish to write in this world. I am super open to it, cause I love it. Thinking of doing a short story anthology of different authors that want to give it a try.
Summary: 1272 exact word count
A world where European Colonialism never occurred, a young woman on a diplomatic trip writes her father letters.
Letters to Father Toklo I
You should be leaving the Dine nation soon. I hope that Mother Meriwa was able to make many good contacts there before you move on to the Muskogean bands. I can only hope your trip so far has had as much easy traveling as our delegation.
Mother Tapeesa booked us on the trains north and across the straight into Siberia. They just laid the magnetic tracks as far south as Yakutsk and so we were able to reach it in that first day. I am jealous that you will be able to make your trip East from the Dine through airship. The Matriarchy’s trains might be the fastest way to travel with the new magnetic tracks, but speed often forgoes the beauty of travel as you taught it to me.
As I watched the land and water speed past us in a blur I could not help but dream of the days you would take us to visit the Salish Confederacy. The long trips by boat may not have been as fast, but there is something to be said for a journey at the speed of a strong current. And now you will be traveling on currents of air. I am jealous Father and hope that when I finish my apprenticeship under Mother Tapeesa I will be able to visit the Ndee in the South and experience the same modern wonders. Perhaps you should learn their ways, and bring airships North.
Speaking of the Salish I am sorry to say that we had to leave before the celebrations began for their signing of the Covenant and their coming adoption. Their representative was large enough I thought she would give birth right there at the signing, but luckily she held through. The baby will come soon though, and with it, their official period of commingling will begin. They have signed and soon the First Generation Concords will begin, it is an exciting time, and recording it will make me an ancestor to remember.
Mother Tapeesa put me in charge of the children and it was exciting to explain to them the Covenant. To explain that the Salish would become one with the Matriarchy on a trial base from the birth of that child to its death. They did not understand fully why the trial would end with that individual life or the First Generation Concord’s rules. Why the Salish might wish to leave our great nation, or why we might not want them after a generation.
But once I explained to them that the Matriarch holds no children against their will, and this generation would give us time to see if the commingling would be healthy for both nations I think they got it.
I must say though it was a shock to see men standing with the voters. It felt unnatural, but the Matriarch has accepted the change requested by the Salish, and so shall we all. I cannot, but hope that this means that you great Father will one day be able to be recognized for all you do for us because of this change. I hope you do not mind me speaking so plainly when you never would. You have helped hold to peace and stability with so many of our neighbors, and you deserve to stand before the councils in pride for that. But those are future days that have not yet come.
We will spend a few days here in Yakutsk before moving South by boat on the Lena River until Baikai Lake. From there we plan to take horses to the Mongol Capital of Ulaanbaatar. I fear that as we move South the embrace of snow shall lighten and we will be faced with the heat of Mongolia in summer. I know that it will be nowhere near as warm as your trip, but I cannot help but dread the coming heat. Truly as the Matriarch teaches humans were made for the cold, and it is our natural element. A delegate must truly sacrifice. I will make you proud, even if I must sweat to do it.
Heat is not a thing I must worry about here in Yakutsk, as it is the one place that feels colder than Nome. Cold enough I felt the bite of it when the Sakha hosts took us upon a tour of the diamond and gold mines in the surrounding area. The operations were interesting though I wish it were for something more valuable such as jade or Salish garnets. But I suppose the diamonds are pretty, and their use for technology is undebatable.
The Sakha are indisputably a beautiful people. We came during their preparations to move from their balagan (winter housing) to the more conical urasa (summer housing). The summer houses remind me of bark and pole versions of the teepees of the some of the southern nations. I was excited to try these summer homes, but sadly we will leave before the moves are complete. The balagan are comfortable though and communal as any real civilized people would live.
I know, I know, I can hear you now Father telling me not to speak outwardly of my judgment of some cultures and their primitive ways. I breach that tenant of the Matriarch you hold most dear, “everyone has their own way, and we must live only ours.” But really Father you know I am right. Some civilizations are just primitive. Neither of us wishes to live amongst the Europeans and their blood cults, or their refusal to bathe. It is refreshing to visit the very South of our nation and find they practice as we do.
I can hear you even now chiding me about Lars and his family that has served us so well. He and his kin, so pale, have taken to civilization beautifully, and we should accept that all can. But surely he and his ilk are the exceptions Father. Not all of the Europeans are offered a place amongst the Matriarchy and surely that is for a reason. I speak plainly only because it is you. In public, I live as you taught me. Giving no judgment. I will not shame you Father, nor will I shame my Mothers.
I hope you know that. But here in my letter, I can speak freely of my feelings, knowing that only you will read my words. Knowing that you will correct me gently as you always did, even if my Mothers would surely screech at me. I will make you proud as I take part in this delegation. Mother Tapeesa will write to you soon, and I assure you that she will have only glowing reviews of how I have acted.
I have said enough, please do not be irate with me, I am the daughter you created. I suppose I could rewrite this without my musings, but as you raised me to be I can be only honest with you, and I cannot stomach hiding anything from you Father. I will write more soon, though I fear from this point forward my letters may take longer to reach you because soon we leave the Nation and enter new territory. I will bring the Mongols to the Covenant so that you and your Mother’s names will be known as the families that brought both the Salish and the Mongols to the Family.
I write a separate letter to Mother Meriwa, but if it does not make the same journey please give her my love and tell her the pride I bring to the family.
To see what her father is getting up to check out The Time of Nativia.
If you enjoyed this please check out my other short stories.