| "Bluff" |
Set in the 22nd Century
|Type of Appearance:||Direct POV|
|Nationality:||Village of Kussara|
|Religion:||Polytheism and ancestor worship|
|Spouse:||Azzias and several others, polygamously|
Pitkhanas was the steward-king of the river-god Tabal for the town of Kussara, town in the early stages of civilization on an unnamed planet. Like the rest of his people, Pitkhanas had direct contact from gods and ancestors; however he tended to hear more from the elite of his people's pantheon.
Pitkhanas was present when the "Terrajin" ship William Howells arrived. He was initially wary until ship's captain Katerina Tolmasova demonstrated her flight pack. Pitkhanas's father, Zidantas, warned him that the foreigners had the power to destroy the Kussarans.
From then on, Pitkhanas was content to allow the Terrajin to come and go as they pleased, provided they did no evil to Kussara. This did not please the priest Radus-piyama, who distrusted the Terrajin on the belief that, because Terrajin did not hear the gods, they were accursed. The god Tarhund seemed to agree, telling Radus-piyama that the Terrajin should be expelled. However, when Pitkhanas prayed to Tarhund, the god told him that the Terrajin should stay.
After a time, the Terrajin left. Pitkhanas watched them go. He knew nothing of the crews' theory that the Kussarans were not truly conscious beings as of yet. He also had no idea that the soldier Tushratta was gaining consciousness, and plotting against the king.