Fifty days have passed, since Auna buried the dead members of his tribe, all ninety-four of them. It was a small tribe, but a lot of work to fix a traditional burial ritual for every single one of them. Too much work, and young Auna was not too familiar with the procedure, so he just buried them, making the once-tribal ground into a small cemetery.
Fifty-tree days passed, since the pirates anchored near his home ground, in search of treasure.
Fifty-three days, since the pirates robbed and slaughtered the peaceful natives of the New World.
Auna was only lucky to survive. He climbed a giant tree that has been there since he was born. It was his favorite tree as well – he had been climbing on it since he could remember. And fifty-three days ago, the tree saved his life, which was now worthless, because everyone else had died.
The Macaw tribes, like the one Auna came from, were mostly traveling tribes, they never stayed in one place for more than a few months. They were peace-loving and, unlike their superiors, the Peacock tribes, they possessed little to no knowledge of combat.
When and if the settlers found them, may they be pirates or the members of the royal Armada, the Macaws certainly stood no chance against them. They were and still are seen as only a minor problem that prevents the settlers to get their hands on the riches, and they can be removed easily.
Just like Auna's tribe.
Fifty days have passed, before another ship with a Jolly Roger flag anchored near Auna's home.
The new pirates were late though, the treasure they were after has been taken away by the first pirates who sailed here.
As soon as he heard voices in the distance, words spoken in a language he didn't understand, Auna quickly climbed the tree again – the one that protected him last time.
Four men rode a boat to the beaches. The captain, the first mate, and two regular crewmen.
"What if it's already gone?" asked one of the pirates, scratching the dirty hair under his bandana.
"It wouldn't happen the first time. It's first come first serve. Like a little game, you see? If it's already gone, so be it, there are plenty of others we can look for," replied the first mate, with a voice that sounded rather haughty and annoyed.
The first mate stood out from the crowd. He was not a settler, but a native. A descent of the mighty Peacock clan, who was born in a settler town, but raised with pride and knowledge of the old natives. His nose was long and pointy, his skin dark, with white face paint on his nose, under his eyes and above his eyebrows. His eyes were slanted, and even as his voice suggested he was bored, his eyes constantly looked curious.
His eyebrows were sharp, thin and blue, like his hair, which was cut short, except of the part that was tied back and up, looking like a tuft of black hair on the top of his head.
The clothes he wore made him stand out at any place and any time. He wore a green dress, which was worn by men and women among natives. The dress had detailed orange spiral and flower-like patterns on its sleeves. The shawl, warped around his waist, in several shades of green and blue. Underneath the dress, only a bit of his blue pants were visible. His clothing was extremely colorful and very easily notable. One might think he would be clumsy in a dress, but he proved this idea wrong several times.
Chris Pavo, who got better known under the name 'Mr. Pavo', was rather notorious for his sword fighting skills, and for the fact he was extremely clever and always found solutions to any kind of problems.
The crew can only thank him for always sailing safely, never falling into a trap, never getting arrested. He did a lot for the ship's well being. He kept journal entries for just about anything that happened, he kept each and every man organized. When they ported at a non-English speaking town, he was one of the two men on board who could speak Spanish, and the only one who could speak the old native language.
Before he joined the pirates, he was just a waiter, unable to get a better job, due to his race.
Even now, he was still being a victim to racism from time to time, when the crew visits a tavern. Unlike in the old days though, he now handled it much better, especially if a brave young man was being drunk, daring, or simply stupid enough to take on Pavo with a sword.
Many men tried to prove their race's superiority to Pavo's, by causing petty tavern fights. Very few survived.
The pirates got out of the boat and walked into the small forest without a fear. The burned village of the natives was the first and good enough sign to let them know, that someone got here first.
However, out of curiosity more than anything else, they decided to go check it out up close.
"Wait," said the peacock when the small group was nearly there, his eyes pointed at the ground. "These are graves, captain," he said, looking at the giant bearded man, who raised his eyebrows, which meant that either Pavo should continue with what he was saying, or that the captain was simply curious.
"Someone should still be around, they don't seem too old," proceeded the first mate and looked around slowly and carefully.
Unlike the pirates that were here before them, Pavo knew better to look up at the trees as well, and it was not hard to miss a Macaw tribesman, as their native clothing was almost as colorful as the Peacock's.
"There," he said, pointing at the boy, who instantly hid behind a branch.
"There's the survivor."
"Are ya goin' ta speak wit' 'im, Pavo?" asked captain Red Geier, watching the native boy with his red eyes.
"Of course. It's not every day I find a potential assistant, is it?" replied the older native, his thin blue eyebrows raised.
He didn't have to think twice – he just walked up to that tree, determinedly.
"Hello, what's your name?" he called up to the boy, in the native language.
The boy seemed scared to answer at first, but after taking a better, longer look at Pavo, he decided that he can trust a fellow native. Especially a superior one.
Slowly, he climbed from behind a thick branch, showing himself fully for the first time. His skin was darker than Pavo's, his hair green and blue, tied in a loose braid. His clothing was blue and yellow, much more simplistic than Pavo's but made out of similar pieces.
"I'm Auna, mister. Do you need my help?" he asked, very shyly, not looking the peacock in the eyes. It must've been so strange for him to talk with people he didn't know.
"How about you climb down here first, and then we'll talk?" suggested the tall and lanky peacock. He noticed the macaw look untrustingly at the other pirates, and quickly reassured him.
"Don't worry about them, boy, I'm here to talk to you, not they." He said, making it sound like an order, not a simple request.
Auna reacted quickly, climbing off the tree. All his life, he kept a deep respect and subconscious obedience towards the Peacock tribe. Macaws all did. The Peacock tribe protected them if they were in danger, and gave them a lot, so Macaws naturally started feeling submissive to them.
Pavo smirked slightly, pleased by the boy's obedience.
"You're learning fast. Now tell me, what happened here? Where are your people? Have they all gone to the other side?" he asked, glancing at the ninety-four graves.
Auna looked down a bit, nodding. "Yes, mister." He said sadly.
"And you alone buried them all? How long have you been alone?"
"Yes, mister, I did. It's been fifty-three days." He nodded again.
"Impressive. How old are you?" the peacock asked, raising his thin eyebrows.
"Fifteen," he said, finally daring to look up at the tall man.
Pavo didn't seem impressed, even though he claimed to be before. However, he did look interested. There was a boy in front of him, who single handedly buried about a hundred members of his dead tribe, many of which were probably badly slaughtered. He then proceeded to spend fifty-three more days here, surviving alone.
Macaws were pretty causal people, and unlike the Peacocks or even the settlers, they weren't completely mature at the age of fifteen yet. Yet this boy not only handled plenty of dead bodies, successfully burying them all, but also survived about two months on his own.
That was impressive. Certainly the kid was made of some good material for an assistant that Pavo so very much wished for.
He got bored on the ship a lot, no one in the crew, but the captain, pleased his intellectual mind, no one was smart enough to talk to. Not to mention many of them avoided him, for several reasons;
He was always shouting and bossing everyone around instead of the captain, he was a native, and he spent a lot of the time alone in his cabin – He didn't even eat with the crew. They found him strange.
He needed someone. Someone, who will be there with him all the time, who wouldn't dare to leave. Someone who could help him, who will obey him without talking back. Someone that, maybe, Pavo could teach about all the things he knew, may it be sword fighting, reading or anything he ever read about. Someone young, who could be helpful when Pavo gets old, if he ever will live that long.
And here was this boy, a native. Unable to speak English, unable to read or write, unable to even hold a sword, let alone wield it. He was basically raised to obey people like Pavo, and natives were not stupid people either. He seemed to have guts and basic survivor skills, he seemed perfect for the job.
"So, Auna," he said, "where do you intend to go? Your tribe is gone now,"
The boy shrugged sadly, looking at the graves, then at the burned village.
"I don't know,"
"I have a proposition. How about, you come with me. I need a helper, and you don't have anyone anymore. I need someone, and you have no one. I'm offering you a home, in exchange for your service to me," he spoke, slowly, so that the boy could keep up and think it through.
Strangely enough, the kid didn't even take a minute to answer. Judging by his reaction, you'd think that all he waited for was a chance to get out of the place where his people died. It seemed that he was ready to grab any chance that would come his way, and this was the first one.
"Yes, I would love to go, mister!" he exclaimed, sounding very relieved about leaving his home.
Two years have passed since the Red Vulture Buccaneers picked up the young native boy from the beach where his tribe was slaughtered.
He was far more independent now, his wits got sharp, and he learned how to read and write. His English was accompanied with a heavy accent, and sometimes he had trouble with pronunciation of longer words, but he truly proved himself to be an extremely fast learner.
Pavo was pleased with the growth of his loyal assistant. The boy followed him pretty much everywhere, carrying things for him, even writing his journal entries sometimes. He trusted him fully, and the assistant never let him down.
He enjoyed watching the boy pick up his traits as well. It was obvious to just about everyone, that Auna picked Pavo as his great role model, and he copied several of his habits, along with the hunger for knowledge and that secret wish to mess around with people's heads, manipulating them as only Pavo could.