Salhuta is awake very early, the sun hasn’t risen in the sky. He can hear the birds singing. He lay there listening wondering what they were singing about. When an idea pops into his head. ” I know! I’ll surprise father and go catch some fish. Then I’ll make a fire and start breakfast all by myself.”
He quietly sneaks past his father and Bruandi. He picks up one of the fishing spears and off he goes. “Hmmm.. where would be the best place to fish? Well, I can’t remember the way to the Lagoon. So I’ll just find a nice place by the sea.” he said to himself.
He looked around, the sun was just starting to come up. The horizon was filled with red and yellow clouds bleeding into the night sky. Wow! Salhuta sat and just watched as the rays pierced through them. It was reflecting on the still and calm sea. It was the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen.
“Time to fish,” he said aloud shaking his head. “Yes, over there!” – He spied a small cove past the rocks. It was perfect, right next to the sea. The tide was just on its way out.
Running he slipped and cut his knee, it wasn’t too bad just bleeding a little. Wiping it, he told himself “Come on Salhuta your a man now. You can do this!” – Picking himself up he carried on.
He knew he’d found the perfect place because the sea was clear and he could see fish swimming. Father is going to be so proud of me he thought. He threw his spear and caught his first fish. Not thinking about how he would collect the spear after throwing it.
Salhuta jumped into the water, it wasn’t that deep by now. He collected his spear and placed the fish down safely. He went back into position once more, again he aimed then threw the spear. This time he missed. Jumping down he felt something under his foot. Letting out a scream, the pain was unbelievable. Lifting his foot something that looked like a rock swam off. Salhuta could feel his foot burning and it was swelling up very fast. Not being able to bear weight, he fell banging his head on the rocks. He was out cold.
The King was awake by now, he turned to say good morning to his son. Seeing he wasn’t there. He started shouting “Salhuta! where are you?”. This woke up Bruandi! “What’s wrong your Majesty?”
“Salhuta isn’t here!”
Tulata and Kalama were now awake they too started shouting his name. The King and Bruandi went one way they went the other. It wasn’t long before Tulata spotted someone floating in the water. “Here, Here!” she shouted, “there’s something in the water.” Running out into the sea. As she got closer she could see it was him. The King was racing into the sea. Lifting the body they could see it was Salhuta.
Pulling him back to shore they could see Salhutas’ leg was very swollen up to his knee. Tulata at once fastened a very tight belt around the top of his leg. She’d seen this before and she knew it was from a stonefish. “They’re very poisonous when stood on. She told them – we need Hot water and I’ll have to bleed his leg to stop the venom from reaching his heart.”
The King trusted Tulata, he ran to collect water and Brunandi started a fire. Kalama shouted “I need to go collect something from the camp.” – While looking for survivors earlier she had found Doctor Mulans bag that was full of medications. She ran to get it.
Tulata looked through it. She found some acetic acid in a bottle. She knew this would help counteract the venom. Making a large cut in the princes’ leg she bleed him to stop the venom from moving to his heart.
When the King returned with the hot water she soaked bandages from the bag in the water then poured the acid on the wounds. She then bound the wounds and they carried the prince back to camp. “Now we wait and pray,” she said.
The King was distraught holding his son’s hand he started to pray. Tulata and Kalama took turns bathing and applying the acid. The prince lay there sweating with a fever. Tulata kept bleeding him until the fever broke.
“I think we may be past the worst, your Majesty.” The king never left his son’s side. He prayed all day and all night. Bruandi made sure that the fire was fuelled and that there was plenty of hot water.
By sunrise Salhuta, started to open his eyes. “He’s awake!” shouted the King! “How do you feel son?”