Third Scene: Badui Lands, Pajaran Empire, West Java. January 20th, 1525

The Inner Badiu

After spending a couple of days in the lands of the outer Badui, and meeting the Muslim missionary, Sunang, the party is taken to the lands of the inner Badui (Badui Dalam) to meet the Pu'un, holy leaders of the Badui Dalam.

Topeng has been subtley conversing Sunang's young companion, a boy who calls himself "Babas Babi", which must be self-deprecating (it's translates as "the swept-away pig"). Conversations reveal that the boy has been granted to Sunang for as long as he wishes as a slave from the previously Hindu Royal Family of Banten. He is quite apprehensive about returning to the inner Badui lands because he fears that his family will treat him badly for (a) running away and (b) getting caught and being made into a slave. Sunang's treatment of him is indifferent.

After several days of travelling through difficult mountainous and jungle territory, the party enters a village of the inner Badui. They are dressed in simple white cloth. There is no evidence of any agriculture or animal husbandry, with the exception of some chickens.

That evening following a significant meal (even Robert is satisfied), an pu'un animist presents himself to the party. Strange tendrils of smoke seem to enimate from his fingertips. His skin is coarse, almost barklike and he speaks with a gravelly voice. Babas Bibi translates...

"We are the Badui Dalam, the most sacred of people. All outside of these lands are lands of sin. The great spirit, Gusti Nu Maha Suci created the sacred mountain, Gunung Kedeng, which is the centre of the universe. We are the protector of the sacred mountain and the most sacred center, Arca Domas. None may enter Arca Domas, unless they are Badui Dalam!

"But one has entered", he looks suspiciously at the party (and Banyak lowers her face), "which causes great doubt among our people!" There is a mumering and banging of sticks among the village (or maybe spears?).

"The Badui have learned of different beliefs to our own. The pu'un must assess their beliefs and compare with these. Tonight, each of you, as representatives of your faith shall explain yourselves - and why a stranger can reach Arca Domas, and yet also escape!".

"These are the questions I ask of you;"

- When was the world created?
- Who created it?
- What is man?
- What is the purpose of existence?
- How will the world end?
- What do you think of animists/muslims/hindus/christians?

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