From a novel by Lana M. Harrigan
(Note: this is an extended excerpt from a story of the Pueblo revolt of 1680 against the Spanish. The revolt, which extended across more than a dozen Indian villages simultaneously, stunned the Spanish into hasty retreat back to Mexico. )
This excerpt from K’atsina: A Novel of Rebellion takes place on the eve of the Pueblo Revolt of 1680. Aurelio—whose grandmother was Spanish and Catholic—meets his foster brother, Diego, at his Acoma home. Diego, an angry young man with Apache and Spanish parentage, has been plotting a revolt with the leader Po-pé against everything Spanish.
“A runner will arrive,” Diego began, his strident voice the only sound in Mauharots. “Around his waist will be a knotted yucca cord…
That is our proof, our signal. Each day when a knot is untied we shall know how many days remain. When the cord no longer has a single knot, that will be the day to carry out the sacred plan. To every village a runner will go; every village will have a knotted cord. On the appointed day every village in this land will rise!
…Aurelio hoped beyond hope that the knotted cord would not arrive, but early one morning he saw the runner enter the village, the rope tied around his waist. Only two knots remained…
The whole world changed.