Entry #080

Apanahood (part 2)

Depending on their age, nunis may or may not have a say on whether to be adopted or not. A nuni far too young to make their own choices may be taken in by an apana. As they mature, however, a nuni is expected to understand that they’re being taken care for and thus must remain loyal and obedient to their apanas. If a nuni is adopted at an older age, however, they are allowed to choose if they wish to be taken as someone’s nuni, and by doing so they accept many obligations and responsibilities of their own.

Once a nuni becomes an adult, they’re considered independent and no longer under the authority of their apana. However, should both wish so, as it is in most cases, both may keep considering eachother family and continue calling one another as “apana” and “nuni”. In such cases, every other avin is expected to continue acknowledging them as such. Thus, apanahood can become a lifelong bond that transcends age and blood ties, sometimes even more intimate and treasured than traditional families.

The origin of the terms “apana” and “nuni” remain unclear even to this day. While some academics have suggested many possible etymologies from older dialects, there has yet to be a consensus on their exact roots. Other alternative explainations have been suggested as well. One of the most known is the supposed story of the “first” apanahood, involving a motherly avin named Apana and her foster child called Nuni. This unverified story is often dismissed as mere myth, yet it is so popular that has taken a life of its own as a folk tale and bedtime story for many little nunis across Avia.