March 28, 2017

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By B. G. Hewitt

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Extra info for Abkhaz

Sample text

Qayaq pictured in his mind the invited guest of the Iqsingat, (First to know Fear), a man in his kayak in the midst of their dwelling, the interior of a cliff. The light that seemed to come from nowhere and the people the man had never seen before encircling him all around, their eyes straining at him. He was the center of their attention. Yes, Qayaq knew he had run across something that was extraordinary. The woman who told him of all this was sleeping beside him and in the same room his father-in-law slept noisily.

If he lost this contest, the people would look for a stronger man to be their Umialik. Qayaq saw that his THE EPIC OF QAYAQ 33 Standing Bird with Outstreched Wings Annie Arragutainaq 34 father-in-law was coming down on the jumping-board with his eyes black with rage and his mouth set in a straight determined line. Their eyes met for a split second. Qayaq saw what was in Umialik's mind. Umialik righted himself and as he landed kicked the board to his left with all the power that was in him. Qayaq felt himself being thrown into the air off to the left.

The man with big teeth jumped up and ran into the thicket close by. Before he reached it he had started to change shape and he ran on four legs! He looked back and Qayaq saw his furry face. He was no longer a man but an otter. " Qayaq bellowed these words after the furry fisherman. To this day otters must use their teeth to catch their food. Qayaq put out the fire and picked up the fish and walked to his kayak. Now he had a three-pronged spear to add to what he had brought from his home — an ordinary spear, bow and arrows and a knife.

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