Study Guide Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O'Dell|
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As Karana's relationships with animals grew, so did her aversion to
killing. And this aversion extended even to those animals with whom she
did not develop any close personal relationship, such as the sea elephants
The Aleuts never returned. But, at the time, Karana did not know whether or not they would return, so she was prepared. For many years the otters were also prepared in their own way. Each summer the otters were led away to Tall Rock by the older otters who remembered the massacre.
Finally, one summer Rontu died. This was the same summer that Karana stopped keeping track of the moons. And, that same summer, the otters finally did not leave. Karana thought that this was because those who remembered the massacre were by that time all gone.
Late that summer, Rontu went to the cave where he had lived before joining
Karana. She found him there and stayed with him that night. The next day
he died. She buried him in a crevice which she enlarged for two days.
She covered him with pebbles of many colors.
Rontu seems to have died of old age. Considering the life he lived,
it seems that he was lucky to have lived so long.
The following winter, an especially sad one for Karana, she made four
snares. She hoped to snare a dog she had seen who appeared to be Rontu's
son. She did snare some of the wild dogs, but not the one she wanted to
snare. Then, Karana remembered a weed that her people put in water to
incapacitate fish. She put some of this weed into the spring from which
the wild dogs drank. It did not work. Again, Karana searched her memory.
She remembered a drink that the men of her tribe made using ground up
sea shells and wild tobacco. She put out a big bowl of the stuff mixed
with water and waited. This time she was successful. The dog she wanted
was among those who passed out after drinking the water. She carried him
home and tied him up. She chose an obvious name for him, Rontu-Aru, which
means Son of Rontu. They quickly became friends and Karana was again happy.
But, she still thought about Tutok, and also about Ulape.
The members of Karana’s tribe help her, even though they are no longer with her.
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. 09 May 2017