The transport idled in the water. The last few tight turns had damaged some of the legs and Whenua and Onewa were doing repairs. Nokama sat on the deck, her legs hanging over the side. She had cleaned Matau’s “Makuta fish” and was using a sharpened rock to whittle at the bones.
“What are you making?” Vakama asked, sitting down beside her.
“A trident, like the Ga-Matoran fishcatchers use,” she replied. “It will be a reminder of all we saw and experienced on this journey.”
“I hope we are near the end. The water level in the tunnel is rising. It will be completely flooded soon.”
Nokama paused to examine her work. “Do you think there will be other Toa where we are going, Vakama?”
The Toa of Fire shrugged. “I don’t know. If not, perhaps someday there will be. I’m sure our new home will have its share of dangers and the Matoran will need defenders.”
“And we will be wise old Turaga,” Nokama said, smiling. “Good for telling stories, judging akilini matches, and watching Matau try to fly a Gukko bird without falling off. Can’t you just see it?”
She slipped off the transport and into the water. “I think perhaps we should leave this place a remembrance of us, for we won’t pass this way again.” Using the sharp edge of her hydro blade, she began to carve patterns in the rock wall.
When she was done, she turned to Vakama. “Not as good as what Onewa would do, but… what do you think?”
The Toa of Fire looked at the newly carved image of the six Toa Metru and smiled. “You should have been a Po-Matoran,” he said. “It’s a shame no one else will ever see this.”
“It’s amazing! Amazing!”
The two Toa turned to see Matau flying in excited circles above the ship.
“I found the new world-home! It’s… it’s… you have to come see!” the Toa of Air shouted.
“Can the transport get us there?” Vakama asked Onewa.
“If I say yes, will he stop yelling?”
“Then yes,” said the Toa of Stone.
Long before they emerged from the tunnel, they were shielding their eyes from the light. Whenua, in particular, had to squint. “Mata Nui, if this place is so bright, how will we see anything?” he said.
Then suddenly they were out on the open sea again, with a whole new universe around them. Light, blazing like the fires of the Great Furnace, spilled down from a bright, yellow orb in the sky. The waters stretched out to the horizon, with no great stone barrier to enclose them. Above their heads, seabirds wheeled and screeched what might have been a welcome or a warning.
“By the Great Spirit… it’s incredible,” whispered Nokama. “Such beauty.”
She reached down and caught some water in her cupped hand. Cautiously, she brought it to her mouth and took a taste. She immediately spat it back out. “This is not water,” she said. “Not like what we knew on Metru Nui.”
“You had best get used to surprises, Nokama,” said Nuju. “I think this world is filled with them.”
Matau turned the transport and for the first time, they saw the vast island that would be their new home. It was many times the size of Metru Nui, with mountains far higher than those of Po-Metru and great expanses covered with vegetation. At first, Vakama looked at all the plant life and wondered if perhaps this place was the domain of the Morbuzakh. Then he saw that the growing things here were lush and green, not withered and blackened like the vines that had menaced his city.
Nothing stirred on the beach. Beyond the birds overhead, there seemed to be no animal life on the island. The white sands looked as if no one had ever walked upon them before. All six Toa gazed upon the island with a mixture of awe, hope, and uncertainty.
“Where is the power plant?” asked Whenua. “Where are the chutes? The moto-hub? Even an assemblers’ village would look good now.”
“This is a wild place,” said Vakama. “We are going to have build our own lives here, for ourselves and the Matoran, without the comforts of Metru Nui.”
“Right,” said Onewa, his voice heavy with sarcasm. “And then Matau will go live in a tree.”
“The carver does have a point,” said Nuju. “It is a wondrous place, but how can we expect the Matoran to live here? Can we build a civilization in this wilderness?”
“We’ll find a way,” said Vakama, with more confidence than Nokama could ever recall hearing in his voice. “That is why the Great Spirit Mata Nui guided us here and kept us safe on our journey. This will be our home and our haven.”
“Then why do I feel like we have left a paradise behind, in favor of a very, very strange place?” asked Whenua. Then his attention was drawn to the seabirds, which looked like nothing he had ever seen before. “What do you think those are? We never had anything like that in the Archives. How do they glide on the air like that?”
“Well, Whenua is ready for our new land, I see,” said Nokama. “I think the time has come, brothers.”
Matau piloted the transport to shore. Nokama could not stop looking all around her, thinking what a wonderful spot this would make for a Ga-Matoran village. Someday, she thought, hopefully. Someday I will bring them all here.
Then, one by one, the Toa Metru stepped out onto the sands of the island that would be their home for many, many years to come.