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Photo Gallery and a short Overview of Kapelo’s Quest (Page 4)


             6.3                      6.4                   6.5                    7.1                     7.2                        7.3                      7.4

Since Ayanda can see things but didn’t hear anything, Kapelo feels compelled to clarify if an ogre truly exists. In the company of the twins, the three of them set off only to eventually face what Masilo mockingly calls a “haphazard-looking pile of rocks” (6.3) instead of a hill. Feeling disappointed, the twins refuse to investigate further, so Kapelo, clutching his traditional knob-stick and spear (6.4), is left to discover the unknown on his own. When he suddenly slips and looses his balance, he ends up tumbling into a cave. In the strangely illuminated interior (6.5), Kapelo experiences utter torment.

Listlessly, Kapelo follows his companions back to their base-camp. He doesn’t concentrate on where he is going. When in front of him a snake suddenly rears its head (7.1), he realises it’s a Black Mamba, although it could have been a similar-looking but harmless mole snake (7.2). The appearance of a highly poisonous snake reminds Kapelo that danger is always lurking on the African plains [Chapter 7].

Back at the camp, Masilo relates folklore. In one of the stories, a frog (7.3) features as a messenger, who uses a spider-web (7.4) as a ladder, leading from a spring (7.5) to the sky. In another story about a young woman, who suffered at the hands of her father's second wife, with two fat and lazy daughters, a shiny bird (7.6) comes to her rescue. Since the tales remind Kapelo of what he has experienced, he wonders, are illusion and reality in direct opposition to each other?


            7.5                      7.6                                                8.1                     8.2                    8.3                   8.4

Once the by now dried pieces of kudu meat are stowed away in their slings, the four travel companions cross a river (8.1) and walk through a forest with thick undergrowth (8.2), before they settle down near a pool with a magnificent-looking waterfall (8.3). A full moon that night (8.4) provides ample light, so the companions don’t feel compelled to light a fire. By the light of the full moon Kapelo also finds his way through thick undergrowth much later, when his companions are asleep and he hears a whispered command enticing him to approach a hidden cave behind the waterfall [Chapter 8].

After yet another mysterious encounter, Kapelo is woken up the next morning by the loud shriek of a hadeda-ibis (8.5) flying past, warning him of imminent danger. Alarmed, Kapelo and the twins rush to the pool by the waterfall, where they find Ayanda staring at the water. They cry out in fright when they detect an enormous and evil looking creature (8.6) tumbling in the water – about to strike out!


             8.5                          8.6                         9.1                   9.2                     10.1                      10.2                        10.3

When the twins uncharacteristically tackle each other with the intention to hurt the other, Kapelo experiences the general mood as explosive and indicative of evil prevailing [Chapter 9]. When later, the companions face a heavily wooded area (9.1), they feel uneasy. However, there's no other way than to walk through the treacherously secretive forest, which symbolises what eventually confronts them – a wizard, who is able to convert at will from his human form to a hyena (9.2). Can Kapelo control this sinister scavenger, and avert a life-threatening situation by resorting to magical intervention?

After the horror-experience, Kapelo finds solstice in his ability to communicate with the ancestral spirits and otherworldly beings. The four companions emerge unscathed from the forest – only to face another critical situation. The earth ahead is alarmingly dry and parched (10.1), and to their consternation, they meet the first clan members on their trip, in this forsaken location, of all places [Chapter 10].

When Kapelo meets the king, he introduces himself as a sangoma (diviner) with the intention to help where he can. The king gladly accepts the offer and in response to Kapelo’s instructions, orders that a young ox (10.2), which appears to find more food than the rest of the cattle, be slaughtered as a sacrifice to the ancestors. When Kapelo approaches the ancestral spirits for assistance, lightning (10.3) strikes close by. As the sound of rumbling thunder is audible, Kapelo lifts his head and clearly distinguishes the legendary lightning bird against the sky (10.4).


           10.4                     10.5                 10.6                                           11.1                        11.2                    11.3

Once the rain comes, it continues for days (10.5), falling softly so that leisurely, the water seeps into the ground instead of washing away the already meagre topsoil. Since the river now carries enough water again (10.6) for man and beast, the king announces that now, they can continue the celebrations by also commencing with the once yearly Umhlanga ceremony - and Ayanda desires to take part.

Kapelo is aware what the Umhlanga ceremony entails. He explains to the twins that amongst other rituals, the virginal maidens taking part are expected to symbolically gather reeds (11.1). When the king reveals to Kapelo that he dreamt about a smallish, dull-brown water-bird (11.2), and also of a vulture sitting on a tree trunk (11.3), Kapelo, in his role as sangoma, is able to interpret what the dreams predict. In contrast, Kapelo also realises that foul play is at work [Chapter 11].                                                 NEXT PAGE - 5