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No. 16 (October 1956)
– 43 –

TUKUTUTU SAVES HIS LIFE

Ruatara found him in the general retreat. Being fast Ruatara was rapidly gaining on the more powerful but slower warrior. Pukututu realised only too well the seriousness of his position. Ruatara close behind him making the most hideous yell imaginable, added speed to the pursued. Pukututu, realising that he had to do something however, stopped. There was no time to call out to Ruatara for mercy. He might not hear anyhow because of the noise that he himself was making. Time was running out, when a soldier suddenly appeared right in front of him. Pukututu thrust him back with the barrel of his gun and thereby propelled himself ahead of Ruatara. The last words the soldier uttered were, “Kapai Maori, Kapai Maori,” but there was no mercy. Ruatara, temporarily distracted from his main objective, of slaying the Maori chief, gave Pukututu the much needed respite. He had reached a position of safety, and was kneeling in the ready position. Ruatara though a tried warrior, dared not attack.

So Pukututu together with Ruatara escaped, to relate the above story some years afterwards. In a friendly rivalry Pukututu was said to have challenged Ruatara to a wrestling bout, so sure was he that he could beat him, but at the same time admitting that speed was the only advantage to Ruatara.