This year, whether you’re young or old, try your hand at illustrating the chapters of this story, told in turn by six authors. And maybe see your drawing published in our magazine. This month, it’s Mathilde, from Mérignac who  created images to go with Anne Samuel’s words. 

Boating on the lake
4. Everything is double

“What’s the point in me being the son of the god Inti if I can’t save my mother,” says Itipulco, sadly. His tears shining in the rising sun trickle into the waters of the lake, which are now as dark as the night. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a small boat appears. “Have you forgotten that everything is double here? Akayaka’s daughter can help you,” says an amber-clad Indian who is paddling through the golden ripples. The boy rubs his eyes and the man disappears. “Help you, help you,” echo the mountains. So he won the battle with Capacati, and he has a sister! Itipulco stands up, feeling stronger than ever. He sets off along the path strewn with warm straw to put his questions to the person who knows everything. Tao is the venerable elder of the village. His skin etched with a thousand lines looks as if it had been scoured by the southern wind. His beard, long as the moonbeam reflected on the lake, is intermingled with countless strands of gray, black and white. If he didn’t have those eyes that pierce you like lightning, you would think he were as old as the world.

“Grandfather, where is Akayaka’s daughter?” asks the little boy.

“You dare to utter that name!” cries the toothless old man, trembling.

“The goddess of the waters allowed me to. But I can’t fight Paryaqaqa alone. I have to find my sister.”

“Itaki abandoned your mother long before you came out of the stars.”

“Itaki left her?” murmurs a little voice. The wise old man’s gaze goes blank. The weight  of the years have suddenly caught up with him. “Itaki, Itaki!” sings the Firefly Bird, before  disappearing into the clouds. To be continued.

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Party time