Island of the Blue Dolphins
The laws of Ghalas-at forbade the making of weapons by women of the tribe, so I went out to search for any that might have been left behind. (9.10)
As I lay there I wondered what would happen to me if I went against the law of our tribe which forbade the making of weapons by women – if I did not think of it at all and made those things which I must have to protect myself.
Would the four winds blow in from the four directions of the world and smother me as I made the weapons? Or would the earth tremble, as many said, and bury me beneath its falling rocks? Or, as other said, would the sea rise over the islands in a terrible flood? Would the weapons break in my hands at the moment when my life was in danger, which is what my father had said? (9.26-27)
Yet I cannot say that I was really afraid as I stood there on the shore. I knew that my ancestors had crossed the sea in their canoes, coming from that place which lay beyond. Kimki too had crossed the sea. I was not nearly so skilled with a canoe as these men, but I must say that whatever might befall me on the endless waters did not trouble me. It meant far less than the thought of staying on the island alone, without a home or companions, pursued by wild dogs, where everything reminded me of those who were dead and those who had gone away. (10.9)