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Sunday, July 1, 2012

13: Billy And Simon Are Incans And Climb A Mountain

As some of my good friends know, I have long been fascinated by cultures which have seemingly vanished from the face of the Earth thanks to the influx of other cultures.
The Incans, Aztec and Mayans are three that have long been ones I have studied, along with ancient Egyptian culture - the pharaohs et al.
This chapter involves me taking a shot at writing about the Incan culture. As usual, this was before the Internet and was written while I was in Japan, so I was without reference books in English that I could use.
After re-reading this story a day ago, I researched all of my key Incan references, and dog gone it all if it wasn't correct. My memory as a 27 year-old must have been fantastic, and lead me to wonder just how stupid I have become as I have gotten older in the 21 years since I wrote it. Yeesh.
The character Inca Donald, is my play on the way his nephews say the name Uncle Donald (Unca Donald). Donald Duck has long been my favorite comic book character - especially for the adventures created by writer/artist supreme Carl Barks. If you are ever interested in a good, clean comic book with adventure, fantasy, humor, and family values - ask for a collection by Carl Barks. I know... it's ridiculous... who could believe that animals could talk? (Sarcasm). The wealthy cartoonist mentioned is Walt Disney.    
Oh yeah... Krimm... he was named after a friend of Matthew Hall, who obviously impressed me enough to make him a part of a story.
As well, the assistant animator for the Fern Gully movie, that's good friend of my friend Rob Jones, one Peter Brown who also worked on Family Guy. He never sent me or Rob any animation cels. Just saying. 

Chapter 1             Chapter 6              Chapter 11
Chapter 2             Chapter 7              Chapter 12
Chapter 3             Chapter 8
Chapter 4             Chapter 9
Chapter 5             Chapter 10     

Billy And Simon Are Incans And Climb A Mountain
chapter xiii

Billie and Simon had never met each other before, but had not died often at the same instant in the same locale. Much. Neither remembered their previous lives together or their trips into the land of the white mist (not England, though they have been there many times).

In the mist they met the grinning 2-Footer who would refuse to let them pass, sending them back to the material plane time after time.

The trip through the white mist to meet the grinning 23-Footer was filled with feelings of preja vous and deja vous - and not for the first time either.

As always, through never before, they recognized each other for whom they were/are/will be just before/during and after they were denied admission to the place within the white mist that wasn't there. It happened a moment that came not to pass for eons.
Pulled from the solitude of the black tunnel, Billac wailed in frustration. Procol, his tall, dark, muscular father (he would later hot the most career pinch-hit homeruns in Major League Baseball history) grunted in approval and left to find the other men who would undoubtedly be chewing coca leaves in the shadowy underbrush hoping the village women wouldn't catch them loafing.
In another nearby village, a baby named Simpar bawled his head off. Had he realized it, he would have know that birth got no easier with practice. His father Krimm, was tall, dark and muscular. In a previous life, he was Pepin II of Heristal who ruled Austrasia as a major-domo. After a victory at Tertry over the major-domo of Neustria-Burgandy, he ruled the entire kingdom as chancellor. Centuries later, he would be the lead singer for the heavy metal rock group Megadeth. Krimm didn't know all of this, but he would have been quite pleased if he had. He always liked music.
Billac and Simpar were born on the same day (Winter Solstice) to different parents of different tribes under the stare of Volcan Llullaillaco in what would one day be called Chile. Although no one really knew it, future people called it 1525AD - the last few years of the Incan empire.
Simpar was dressed in a tunic with a shawl tied around his neck like a cape and clasped with a silver pin in front. A cloth headband and grass hewn sandals rounded out his wardrobe.

After eight years, he was now a gangly youth - which isn't really surprising considering he was an active eight-year-old. His father and some of uncles (they used to be birds and therefore Egyptians) had already begun instructing him in the art of war.
Although he didn't know Simpar, Billac (similarly dressed) was also being instructed in the manly rites of battle. Neither realized that deeper, higher plns were afoot.
The two tribes were not enemies - they just had very little to do with each other. The two boys grew up five miles apart and never met each other - except for a dream or two involving dogs and frogs. Nalatraji, the elder shaman in the area, said dreams represented discontent amongst the llamas in the mountains. Although no one, save the shaman, understood what that meant, everyone agreed with him because it would have been folly to say otherwise. Nalatraji was a bit of a bully and liked to sic his jaguar on malcontents. This was allowed because he was the third cousin to Huayna Capac, the supreme Incan, and one of the most powerful rulers in the world. Mr. Capac would, in the future, become an assistant animator for the cartoon movie Fern Gully.   
Somewhere in a sometimes white mist, a hearty guffaw reverberated. It will be a great movie someday.
In early December, the shaman declared that two live sacrifices should be made during the upcoming solstice to calm the apus (god) of Llillaillaco. seeing no reason to doubt the wisdom of the elder (and his jaguar), all the families agreed.

The adults of the two tribes held a festival to determine which youths should be sacrificed to the mountain. Since this sacrifice would bring honor to the winners, all of the family men fought hard. Contests in running, jumping and walking a straight line after eating special mushrooms were held.

Faithful readers of these tales will already have guessed that the fathers of Billac and Simpar won the honor to sacrifice their own flesh and blood - wrong! They lost! Krimm (much to the chagrin of future Megadeth fans) and Procol could not hold their mushrooms as well as Donald and Took.

However, the winning family from Billac's village - Took's - was killed in a freak landslide. Nalatraji, after surveying the disaster site with his jaguar, said it was an obvious sign the apus of Llillaillaco was not happy with the choice. Few could doubt that.

Inca Donald's family of three young boys (who would in a later life inspire a wealthy cartoonist to new heights) from Simpar's tribe were eaten by hungry llamas that were dislodged from their mountainous homes by the previously mentioned landslide.

Naturally, the runner-ups were the families of our heroes.

After three days when no one had been killed by packs of ravenous llamas riding mountainous tsunami, Nalatraji saw that the mountain would be satisfied with the replacements.
Of course, all of this was a little disarming for Simpar and Bilac, what with the landslides and llamas and sacrificial lambs. Oh my!

Though a live human sacrifice to the apus was of monumental concern for the adults, the youths just weren't that interested. They didn't care that their deaths would bring honor to their parents and an afterlife of bliss for themselves.
Somewhere in a white mist, a 2-Footer was chortling.
They didn't even care that their deaths on the December solstice (their birthday) was to pray for adequate rain and crop fertility.

Billac couldn't help but muse that the sun worshiping had gone to the head of the entire Incan nations.

Simpar, at the same time but miles away, thought that religious fanaticism was for the birds. True - just ask the Egyptians.
The white mist grew thicker as the grinning 2-Footer ground its teeth - not a pretty sight or sound when you consider that 99% of it consisted of teeth. But, it did keep up the appearance of a smile.
At 6AM, after a nice breakfast of drugged chicken, the kids went back to sleep. Billac and Simpar didn't even have time to say a prayer to Viracocho, the Incan creator. They need not have worried. They'd met Viracocho many times in the past and future, and had they remembered, they would have known it wasn't very granting in its aid,
It had stopped grinding its teeth and was bow beaming broadly.
The shaman, with his jaguar and six porters began climbing the now extinct volcano. They boys were to be carried up to the 22,000-foot mark near the summit.

After seven hours and a climb half-way up the mountain, the boys slowly awoke. Nalatraji's repeated blows to the head with a wooden mallet convinced the boys to go back to sleep.

Nine hours later, the motley crew reached the predestined site. Nalatraji barked out commands to build an altar with the supplies they had brought.

After an hour-and-a-half, it was complete. Since it was nearly midnight on the eve of the Winter solstice, it was quite cold at this part of the story. An icy wind drove shards of ice into their faces. Still, the upcoming act would make up for this hardship.

The shaman, after laying the sleeping boys upon the wooden altar, mumbled a prayer that the apus heard in the mist. He then wrapped his six-foot long cord around the necks of Simpar and Billac and pulled for all his worth. He really did love is job.

The jaguar (would in a future time and place be an over-worked executive for IBM whose only reward for hard work would be yet another business trip across the globe. Finally having enough of pandering to the wishes of his uncaring boss, he will decide to quit. He'll tell his wife of the decision, only to have her convince him to stay on. After all, they have a mortgage to keep up, new furniture to pay for, and it really is a good job. Besides, what would the neighbors think? She will decide not to tell him that she is boinking his boss), yawned and nipped at a flea (strangely, once a flea, always a flea) on its back.

Did the sacrifices work? Well, soon the ravages of smallpox and 14 men led by a Spaniard named Pizarro (all of them would one day find themselves in a dark, moody club smoking reefer with a guy looking suspiciously like Robert Mitchum) would topple the mighty empire, making Nalatraji very unhappy at his loss of work and lifestyle.
The two dead spirits wafted their way along a lemon yellow corridor (though neither knew what a lemon was) up to the doorway guarded by the gateway god. Both paused to investigate a roar from behind and in front of them, and entered into a white lodge. "Everything will be clear again," each though to the other.

A frog and a rat were flying in the opposite direction.
On top of Volcan Llillaillaco, carnivorous llamas ate the flesh of Billac and Simpar, and were sated.
Life's funny that way.

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