Demise of the Gulabadam

Heroes have deaths. In fact, sometimes it’s the crux of their whole story, per Le Morte D’Arthur. And, like so many myths, they’re inconsistent. Did Herakles die? Or did he ascend to Mt. Olympus? It depends on who you ask and what their interest is in the answer.

The Gulabadam is pierced through the heart by Shabut, whose tale is told by her people to this day.
The Gulabadam is pierced through the heart by Shabut, whose tale is told by her people to this day.

I’m not telling the story of the Death of the Gulabadam now. And maybe this isn’t it. He’s a character who takes pride in the mortal danger he puts himself in, with no help but the (extremely wily, powerful) mortal Namedealer, Galil, at his side.

So, here he is, either dying or coming close to death at the hands of Shabut, who bears the spear, Heart-Tooth, which she drew from the heart of the dragon, Tayezur. In promise to her ancestor, she has never cut her hair, and it, itself, is one of her trophies. Earlier in the battle, she lost her helmet made of the talons of eagles that had been flying off with her people’s cattle. The Gulabadam, likewise, has lost the jawbone of the desert donkey-monster, and is down to palming his enemy’s head.

What are heroes like in The Fifth World? Absent sedentary, agrarian life, how do their culture heroes demonstrate the values of their society?
I’d love to know how Fifth World musicians, meeting at their annual gatherings for the jellyfish harvest, or to salute the passing herds of North American Elephants, collaborate between their cultures. Do they have some sort of musical trade language?

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