Chapter 08 – Waiting
Death came to all things, and I wondered if I was capable of dying. Had I died once? Was I dead in the black abyss of nothing? Was I dead before that? Was I dead now?
More questions with no answers. I felt alive through my lizards, lived vicariously through them. As long as they were alive, I was alive. I chose to believe that of myself; Starlight had shown me the power of belief.
Each of their lives was like a tiny pinpoint of light. Small, miniscule, just one of a hundred thousand others that had come before it and the uncountable number that would follow. They lit up the sky of my essence like a countless number of stars, each shining with their own light. A portion of my essence was dedicated to remembering all those small lights of life that had passed. Their lives encouraged me forward. For all the sadness at their passing, the birth of every new light delivered just as much happiness.
It would be quite some time before I felt fully ‘rested’. My influence was weak, but even so I did not want their growth to stagnate. They had come a long way in the time I was absent, using all the gifts I had given them, combining them with their own genius.
For now, I focused on the issue of their legs. Seeing Starlight’s Defender fight, although admirable in her own way, was hampered by her quadrupedal posture. To get a good grip on her spear, she had to sit on her back legs, wasting precious seconds and making her more vulnerable while she attacked. When jabbing while balancing on three legs, she couldn’t get the same amount of force, but had more mobility. I could see this being problematic in their future. The creatures around them did not remain static, they too grew and changed with the generations, adapting to their predators and prey.
Protecting their families was a high priority, for them and for me. Although their forelegs were a bit weaker, overall their short legs were well suited for quadrupedal movement. When sitting, they sat back on their feet with their heels on the ground, and had difficulty rising from their knees while in that position. That would become key to forward movement. Their legs needed strength to hold their body upright, to move without the assistance of their forelegs. When sitting on their back legs, their heels should be raised so they could easily change positions. Their center of balance would also need to be drawn more towards their hips, or they would just topple forward as they did now, though not fully as they had a tail to help counterbalance.
How did I know this? This didn’t come in the flash of a memory, it felt much more familiar than that. It was almost as if I just knew, despite the creatures in the area walking on six, four, or no limbs. I did not see any two-legged creatures in the area of my lizards, yet I instinctively knew how to move on two legs. Bodyless, I could not even imagine myself with two legs.
I would not worry about where the knowledge came from for now, I would simply use it to my advantage. Perhaps one day I would revisit the question, along with the countless others.
With the young eggs I very slowly gave strength to their legs. It was such a miniscule amount, much less than when I was reshaping their hands. It would be a long endeavor, but I was up to the challenge. I wanted my lizards to be able to defend themselves from all their predators, not just most. I did not hold a hatred towards the giant snake, it was simply living as it aught. No, this was my problem to overcome, to strengthen their weaknesses so they would not fall prey again to such strong foes.
My thinking was more defensive than offensive. I didn’t want them to barbarically subjugate all others, but I also did not wish for them to be subjugated either. Was I being too willful, pushing my ideals onto these creatures that had only recently learned to think for themselves?
I dwelled upon that for a long time, all the while still nurturing the changes in their limbs. Strong Light’s birth had been due to my own curiosity, not for the good the lizards. Influencing the Little Leader, surely that had benefitted their development. Their strong sense of family…purely my own selfish whim. Yet I did not regret it, any of it.
My lizards were still growing and developing…perhaps I was too. Would it be that as they advanced, so too would I? More questions, and very few answers. I could only hope that I was leading them on the right path. Perhaps they would guide me much in the same way I guided them. I think I would like that. I felt myself shimmer with affection for them, my ways of thinking influenced by the way my lizards communicated.
Now it was time to wait. Wait for them to develop, wait for new inspiration, wait for something new to occur. I would watch and wait.