Zawmb’yee Continues The Blog, Chap 9
Before the lunch break, James hadn’t been fully dressed in his trotter’s uniform, but he needed to be hitched to the trotter’s cart soon to begin his breaking in before his rebellious tendencies could become habitual and chronic. The time had approached to apply a more comprehensive discipline and ensure obedience. I’ve read that once a new trotter accepts the role assigned, it no longer suffers the pain of futile escape attempts, and injuries from reckless flailing about. They say that once the horse’s identity and role are firmly inculcated, the new trotter is comforted by the certainty of its obedience to a proscribed routine. Thus fear is removed. But first the wild horse must be broken.
James had not been looking well when we had returned to the mevltikacle after our lunch break. He had not eaten and had had limited drinks. His weakness had to be carefully calculated to limit his strength to resist, but not allow his death as long as he appeared to be a useful commodity, but from the way he trotted about, pulling on the post, rolling on the floor, yanking at his clothes, he seemed strong enough to survive a little longer.
The Yacmyeep milled about in excited anticipation. Hshwigi, Baynibi, and Naytuci, gossiped, not overly concerned with who would overhear them while the rest of the Yacmyeep prepared for the afternoon’s activity. Hshwigi wiggled her fingers to show her rainbow-colored fingernails. “Look,” she said to the others, “aren’t these great shades of nail polish: passionate red on my index finger, citrus orange for my middle finger, sun-bright yellow on my ring finger, and bright green for my pinkie. Aren’t these gorgeous?”
The others agreed. Baynibi said, “You know, we could paint James’ fingernails these colors. Don’t you think it would be pretty?”
Naytuci said, “Well, maybe but right now, James’ hands have to stay handcuffed behind his back.”
“Oh yeah, I forgot,” said Baynibi.
Hshwigi fluttered her eyes. “See my blue eye shadow…”
“Oh yeah,” said Naytuci, “we could do his eyes, and paint his toes.”
Baynibi said, “Yeah, that would be fun.”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah,” said Hshwigi, “I can see it: this will be a pretty filly. Look at the decorative ancient engraving on James’ hilukwili, and doesn’t it look gorgeous: James does have pretty armlets, and if you look closely you can see there are nice frilly, leafy designs on James’ bra. Don’t you think?”
“Just one thing,” said Naytuci, “those dry chapped and cracked lips are not attractive.”
Libikzi shouted, “Quiet everyone. We have work to do… Someone bring the horse over to the cart between the pull poles.” James was lifted, pushed, and dragged.
James said, “Don’t you think you’ve had enough fun. I could go and I won’t say anything — I mean, who would believe me anyway?”
“Another demerit. You address me as PevfexoLibikzi. Understand?”
“Yes, Pevfexo Libikzi,” said James.
“James,” said Libikzi. “We can’t take any chances. Calm down, and you’ll be fine. Wouldn’t you like a nice full course dinner of your choice, and all you can drink of any beverage?”
“Yes, Pevfexo Libikzi,” said James.
“Well then, you have to win the race. We will prepare you to be a good filly. We’re going to hitch you to the cart. Don’t fidget because we want to properly distribute the load that you’re going to pull among the attachment points and lines. Just stand calmly, and we’ll take good care of you. Alright, James?”
“Yes, Pevfexo Libikzi,” said James.
Libikzi instructed the Yacmyeep. “First attach the chains from the poles to the rings of the hilukwili. Leave some slack, and we’ll adjust it later — it’s not going to take much of the load…”
Hshwigi and Baynibi locked the chains onto the rings. Hshwigi wiggled her fingers in front of James’ face. “Do you like my nails, James?”
James said, “Uh, yes AipnicaHshwigi. Very nice.”
“Alright, now just for a margin of safety,” said Libikzi, “attach the chain from the center bottom of the cart to the handcuff chain and the extension pole to the neck collar.”
James tried to trot away. Five Yacmyeep rushed in to hold James, and five to hold the cart.
“Whoa, James,” said Libikzi, “you don’t want to hurt yourself.”
James said, “Never mind the race. Get me out of this.” James tried to turn the cart around, but the Yacmyeep already had a hold on everything.
“Ten demerits,” said Libikzi. “If you damage yourself, we’ll have to execute you. And you will address me as Pevfexo. Perhaps we should redeem all your demerits with a suitable punishment now. Or will you stand still and be calm?”
James shifted around to try to get comfortable. “Alright, Pevfexo. I’m OK now.”
“Good James,” said Libikzi. “Now we move on to the main load bearing item.” Libikzi gave a signal. More Yacmyeep came in and grabbed hold of every inch of James’ body. Libikzi commanded them, “From now on, I want no movement at all.”
James couldn’t budge in any way. James screamed, “Let go of me.”
“Two demerits,” said Libikzi. “James, if you stay calm, you’ll be fine.”
Libikzi pointed at Hshwigi and Baynibi. They attached chains from the main structure of the cart to rings on James’ bra.
Naytuci sat in the jockey’s chair of the cart. Hshwigi and Baynibi attached the reins to James’ earrings.
“Now that was easy. Wasn’t it James,” said Libikzi.
James jumped up and down and shook his head.
Libikzi directed the Yacmyeep. “Hold James still. Don’t allow any movement.”
Baynibi was all excited. “Pevfexo, can we decorate our filly now?”
“Sure,” said Libikzi. “The lips are chapped. Choose a lipstick.”
Baynibi said, “Let’s see how bright orange looks.” She applied an orange lipstick to James’ lips. “Doesn’t that feel better,” she said to James.
“Yes, Aipnica Baynibi,” said James.
Libikzi turned and looked over towards Yenkoi and me. “High Priestess, Fevepo Zawmb’yee, if it would please you to do so, would you be inclined to name the new filly?”
“Yes, thank you, Pevfexo Libikzi,” I said, “I like Camille.”
“Very well, thank you, Fevepo Zawmb’yee,” said Libikzi, “we are honored.”
Hshwigi brought supplies from her equipment bag. She said, “Camille, close your eyes, I want to paint your eyelids blue.”
The filly looked around, hitched firmly to the cart.
Hshwigi grabbed the horse’s face. “That’s you Camille; I’m speaking to you,” said Hshwigi.
“I’m James,” said the filly.
“Two demerits,” said Libikzi, “This is your new name. You will answer to it when addressed. Understand Camille?”
“I’m James,” the horse hitched to the cart said.
“Ten demerits,” said Libikzi. “You will address me as Pevfexo Libikzi, and I will address you as Camille. Understand Camille?”
Libikzi said to Naytuci who was in the jockey’s chair, “Drive Camille to the treadmill in the punishment cell, after you establish control.”
The Yacmyeep still held the horse in place. Naytuci pulled all the chains tight until the horse screamed. Naytuci reached to one side and found a whip. She lashed the horse twenty times. She said, “When I pull on your left ear, you will turn left.” Naytuci nodded to the Yacmyeep. They withdrew away from the cart. The horse pulled forward with its head turned to the left. Naytuci said, “Turn left, turn left.” The head was turned left but the cart went straight. Some Yacmyeep in a forward position blocked the path with a ramp that they unfolded from the back of a truck. The cart went straight up the ramp onto the platform of the truck. The Yacmyeep climbed up the ramp, threw lines out and anchored the cart to the platform. Naytuci put on a brake, and got out of the driver’s seat. Naytuci and the Yacmyeep walked down the ramp back onto the floor of the mevltikacle. The ramp folded up. The whole cart with the horse still attached was driven to a huge domed area that was carved out of the rock between the entrance and the pond. An enormous garage door opened slowly in the back. The truck disappeared into a tunnel, and the door closed.
Libikzi said to Naytuci, “Wasn’t that exciting? It’s just a minor setback. This sort of thing often happens. We have other strategies. We’ll see.”
I said to Yenkoi, “Does this mean the conditioning has failed?”
Yenkoi said, “No, Fevepo. It’s just one of the variations. They’ve handled it before. It’s never predicable which variation will work best in each case. It’s just going to take a little longer.”
“Well, in any case, Gavicte Yenkoi, the Yacmyeep seem to enjoy their work.”
“Yes Fevepo,” said Yenkoi, “they will get the job done eventually. There’s plenty of time, and I predict that Camille will win the race. It should be interesting. Shall we go to dinner?”
“Yes, fine, Gavicte.”
An exciting day. Better than reading the Ofuye.