Chooses n'Gue as her Prime messenger; she trusts him.
Why? The reason is simple, it was n'Gue who relayed messages that led to keeping Jack alive, when he first attended her mother's court.
n'Gnung's children are in training to become messengers of the Empress. This is a great honour, and both are determined to be quicker, and have greater endurance than their father.
The curse of their lives change because of Jack, and the use of transporters; rendering physical runners obsolete. Or are they?
n'Gue insists his son learn the art of running, his daughter becoming a dedicated transporter messenger, and later, a comm. specialist.
n'Gue is a dedicated fitness guru, and teaches Jack the arts of running for great distances, and quickly, which proves to be more mental than physical.
But for n'Gue's presence on the trail, as Jack heads for Grimwaldi Rinns, to complete the Trials of Passage, he would have failed. n'Gue picks up a faster pace, encouraging Jack to match him stride for stride. Jack does.
She relies upon n'Gue near the end of Book Three, when they are seriously compromised by the Ogre intrusion of their island.
Feature: The Second
n'Gue - Prime Messenger of the Second
His childhood was similar to his younger brother n'Gnung, he meeting the challenges of growing up first.
His parents schooled him from an early age in the traditions, resposnsibilities, and techniques of being a messenger. He was encouraged to develop running techniques for speed and great distance, along with the associated mental
Once in formal training at age fourteen, he often ran with his father, whom he eventually matched for speed, but not sustaned distances.
At age sixteen he married a local girl of their clan, who first produced a girl, and later a boy. Their home was built next to his parent's, and close to the Royal enclosure; messengers could be called upon at any hour of day or
By the time he was eighteen, and just before his father's physical powers began to decline, he proved himself fleeter of foot in a race between them to Grimwaldi Rinns; a modern Marathon distance.
can run faster, and farther than any other Second.
Their messages delivered, replies were given, and the return journey was untertaken after only a brief refreshment break. During the run home, n'Gue learned his final lesson.
His father began at a slightly slower pace, and chose to take the long route back to Forest Meade. Full of the confidence of youth, n'Gue elected to take the messenger trail that was a shortcut bypassing the hot springs. It meant
he would miss the chance of refreshments, but the route chopped several miles off the distance, and usually saved about thirty minutes, despite being a scant trail over mountainous country. He found the trail more taxing on that
occasion, and wading across the rivers was more demanding.
Emerging onto the road proper, there was no sign of his father, and his confidence grew. He was proud to know he was beating the then, fastest runner in the land. That was until he crested a small rise, and saw a figure on
the trail a long way ahead. The man was running at about the same pace he was, and he knew it could only be one man, his father.
He realised the shortcut only saved time, if he were fully rested, the return journey had been too short a time to recuperate. His indignity flared, he lengthened his strides, and concentrating on his mental thoughts alone, cut
of the protestations of his wearying body; pushing himself beyond his known limits.
Slowley at first, the gap between them began to close. n'Gue reached deeper inside himself, and lengthened his strides once more. Forest Meade came into view, and he was closing quickly on his father; that was until the other
heard his footfalls, glanced around, and sprinted for home. n'Gue was still closing, but not fast enough.
On reaching the palace, the father turned round to wait for his son, astonished how close he had come, despite his own sprint finish; he had never seen anyone run as fast over such a long distance. n'Gue had unlocked the secrets
of a higher level of running.
n'Gue the Man
For most of the trilogy, n'Gue is a constant, but background figure. He is always nearby whenever Jack or Jien Noi need him, but is seldom in the spotlight for long. He was with his younger brother, n'Gnung when they preformed the
Haka to welcome Jack to Forest Meade, and subsequently features in a few cameo's, of which he is not the focus; leaving the hot springs he carried Lo Si's message to the Seer and Weid Noi. Later he brought warning the Empress' troops
were searching for Jack in the city, and told n'Gnung where the cavern Weid Noi inhabited was located.
He is taught how to use the transportation devices, and adds an extra pair of hands wherever needed. His messenger corps grow due to contact with other Tribes, and wars with the Great Ogre. He is as insightful as n'Gnung,
but more cautious, deliberating on his ideas before speaking, where his younger brother had self-confidence to reach a solution, and speak it.
Nevertheless, his attention to detail proves invaluable when he becomes the first citizen for several generations to complete the Trails of Passage in one day. Later he trains his brother to do likewise, and much later, Jack.
In Book One, when taking the fight to the mercenaries on the rocky shore of the western isle, he supports his brother and Jack, both using RPG's, with a flame thrower. Ever adaptable, he also takes charge of distributing mercenaries
weapons and protection to their embattled troops, using his messenger corps to greatest effect.
n'Gue comes into his own near the end of Book Three, where he is the most senior ranking on the bridge, and must take control of the final battle against the Great Ogre. He performs admirably, and is relieved after most of the
hard work has been done.