Tomahawk was nicely balanced. With a bit of practice it could be thrown at things and it would embed itself. Finding things to embed it in was part of my formative learnings in the dark arts of public relations. There are two kingdoms of natural things: plants and animals. While tomahawks embed nicely in both, the scale of repercussions is quite different for each kingdom, I observed.
Once sharpened, tomahawk would hold a keen edge for a while. It was too small for the purposes of tree felling, but tree ringbarking was a different matter entirely. I learned that ringbarking trees had a measurable negative effect both on the health of the selected tree and on the health of my mother. Tomahawk managed to get confiscated for a period of time on one occasion.
Once reunited, tomahawk and I decided to do our bonding further away from the house section. A row of pine and macrocarpa trees was located to the west of our house, primarily for the purpose of deflecting the prevailing sometimes salt-laden south-west winds that whip through that part of Taranaki.
The pines had a bevy of low limbs that could be whopped off, not to mention pine cones that could be bagged up and used to curry favours with mothers who enjoyed using these to start household fires. Smaller pine trees may even have been ringbarked. Limbs were used to build dams in the creek that ran beneath. The North American beaver could have learned much from my dam-building master classes.
Macrocarpa trees were great for climbing, as they had gnarled and multi-limbed barrels. Having got oneself and one’s tomahawk well up a macrocarpa, there were smaller limbs that could be whopped off and used to construct fortifications amongst the entwined limbs. Notches could be carved into the bark to create footholds for ease of access and egress. There were also grand views to be had of the Land to the West.
Forts up a macrocarpa tree were essential camouflage and protection against the Enemies of the State that lived in the Land to the West. These were the Evil Forces afoot from the citadels of Mangatoki and Lowgarth, for instance. It was the job of me and my legions to keep careful watch, to plan defensive strategies and harness the resources necessary to repel these potential invaders.
My army was legend. Well trained and superbly equipped, it could move with pace and strike at the Heart of Evil when necessary. My soldiers’ loyalty was unquestioning. I ruled with compassion and fondness and was universally loved and lauded by my troops. Our authority over our dominion was unquestioned, as long as I was home in time for dinner.
Sometimes tomahawk and I would have scouting expeditions further west, to familiarise ourselves with the tree-clad territories in which we may have to engage with Evil Forces. Whilst there, limbs could be whopped off and smaller specimens ring-barked, for their own protection and for strategic purposes.
Can a ten-year-old with a tomahawk create a legacy that changes the world? In my mind they can.