- "It takes more than courage to lead. It takes eyes that are open!"
- ―Excerpt from "Rites"
Rites is told from the point of view of a young Tusken Raider named A'Koba. A'Koba and his cousins A'Vor and A'Vor's twin take part in a rite of passage which involves killing a juvenile krayt dragon. Armed with a durasteel spear doused with sand bat venom, A'Koba manages to kill the creature, completing his and his cousins' rite of passage; making them adults. While A'Koba is jubilant, the elderly chieftain A'Yark reminds him that he only killed a juvenile. A'Yark also chastises A'Vor and his brother for their poor grasp of the gaderffii stick. When A'Koba boasts he can kill the Krayt dragon's adult parents, A'Yark responds that when she became chief long ago, the clan had been brought so low that their younglings had been forced to kill logra in the rites of adulthood.
While a confident A'Koba wants to lead a hunt tonight, the older A'Yark advises caution and warns that there are "magicks" in the desert. A'Yark relents but instructs A'Koba to report to her before striking anything. The following day, A'Koba and the brothers track the astromech droid R2-D2 as he travels through a valley along the south-eastern limb of the Jundland Wastes. They also track Luke Skywalker and C-3PO's X-34 landspeeder as it follows R2-D2 in pursuit. While A'Koba is confident, A'Yark warns that this place is the lair of a powerful "shaman," whom they avoid. A'Yark claims that the air answers him.
While A'Yark remains with the banthas, A'Koba and the cousins ambush Luke and C-3PO, knocking the young farmer to the ground. While rifling through Luke's belongings, they are startled by a high-pitch screech. A'Koba and the cousins see a cloaked figure, whom they realize is the "shaman," and flee. After reuniting with A'Yark, A'Koba proposes returning to the gorge with reinforcements. The older and wiser A'Yark advises caution but allows A'Koba and the cousins to gather reinforcements as part of a rite of leadership. In private, A'Yark ponders on the raiding and pillaging lifestyle of the Tusken Raiders.
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Notes and references
- "Rites"—From a Certain Point of View