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VerdaTe'Whito

The Becoming Old

The Egou'gata Orenindi do not have adults in thier culture. They view adults as unworthy, disgusting, and generally to be avoided or killed if they become a threat. Every child of the Egou ... was lost, forgotten, or cast aside by an adult. And, they remember that.
So, there are no adults in the Egou.
This of course means that all Egou eventually leave the Family, and the Verda'Te'Whito (The Becoming Old) is the proper honoured way to do so, unless you die.

History

VerdaTe'Whito has been for as long as the Egou have been. It is known that the First Founders, themselves, created the VerdaTe'Whito because they understood that the future of the Egou and its culture required that adults leave.
The First Founders thought very carefully about how adults were to leave the Egou, the implications of young leaders, and the impacts that resistant adults would have on the future. They made the VerdaTe'Whito the one ritual that all Families shared and that all Families followed in the same way.

Execution

The ritual begins on the day that the Family member has their first adult birthday. The Family helps prepare a large party, and the birthday gifts. The gifts are the last thing that this person will receive from the family and are always items that will help them survive being an adult. These gifts may include a backpack, lights, food items or general tools, and if the Family is wealthy, a few trade-able items. And, sometimes they are completely useless or strange, depending on what the Family thinks will be needed.

The party starts later and all of the Family attends. This party is both a happy occasion as they recount the person’s history with the Family, and a sad occasion as everyone says goodbye to the person who has VerdaTe’Whito. Because, of course, at the parties end the person is taken to the Hallway.

The journey to the Hallway is typically short as Families tend to plan to be within a few hours travel. The journey itself is considered a no-conflict zone by all and it is not uncommon for a few Families to meet or journey together. Everyone knows where the Hallway is. It’s been in the same place since the beginning.

Once at the entrance to the Hallway, the last part of the ritual occurs. The Mother says good bye to the child, who is about to enter the Hallway, by saying the words of Remembering, final goodbyes are said, and then the person enters the Hallway and walks its length.
It Hallway is so long that it’s end can not be seen. The Honour Guard and the Mother remain at the entrance for several hours. Should the adult try to return, the Honour Guard will kill them as they are a threat.

Participants

The VerdaTe'Whito is attended by the following:
The Mother of the Family, who is the ritual’s leader. They are the speaker of the final words of remembering.
The family member, who has VerdaTe’Whito. They will be an adult and not known to the Family.
The Honour Guard, who will protect the Mother. They will stand watch at the entrance to the Hallway, to make sure that no adult returns to seek revenge, or to seek to return.
Do the dark, 
Walk the Hall,
Everyone does,
When you're too tall.

Can't look back,
Don't feel sad,
Take the steps,
Don't be bad.

VerdaTe!
VerdaTe!
Whito!
Whito!
No time to play!

Speak the words,
Remember the friend,
Hold the knife,
An adult to rend.

On your birthday,
This will be,
You walk the Hall,
The Founders decree!

VerdaTe!
VerdaTe!
Whito!
Whito!
No time to play!
Common chant of the Egou'gata Orenindi when meeting with adult traders from the Grand Market. Maybe chanted entirely in Realm Common or Sewerspeak (Korerafra) or a combination.

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Comments

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3 Aug, 2021 12:14

This is beautiful and sad. I love the chant!

Come see my WorldEmber 2022 page!

5 Aug, 2021 16:10

Thank you. I have tried to capture as many paradoxes as I can in creating this world. I am glad this ritual does that. I love this ritual as it almost feels like a death/sacrifice ritual. And, I've try to place story hooks as I can. For me, the question pops into my mind ... What's at the end of the Hallway?