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Ajabu
Ajabu.png
Physical information
Gender

Male

Species

Okapi

Hair color

Black, brown, gray, and white

Eye color

Green

Biographical information
Also known as

Stranger (by Thurston)

Status

Living

Residence

Pride Lands

Affiliations

Pride Landers

Relationship information
Allies

Beshte, Bunga, Fuli, Kion, Nala, Ono, Simba

Enemies

Makucha

I hide behind trees, behind rock piles... Oh, if I see a hole, I'll hide in that hole.
―Ajabu[src]

Ajabu is a male okapi.

Before coming to the Pride Lands, Ajabu lived in a faraway land, where he was continually hunted by leopards. When one leopard in particular, Makucha, pursued him relentlessly, Ajabu fled to the Pride Lands. Over time, he became more comfortable in the kingdom and revealed himself to the Pride Landers. This led to Makucha discovering his whereabouts and making a final attempt on his life. However, Makucha's schemes were put to an end by the Lion Guard, and Ajabu was given permission to reside in the Pride Lands by its king, Simba.

Biography

Early life

Beshte: So why'd you leave?
Ajabu: Oh, I got chased out. Guess I didn't hide well enough.
—Ajabu and Beshte on Ajabu's homeland[src]

Before his arrival in the Pride Lands, Ajabu lived in a distant land, where he was continually hunted by leopards. One particular leopard named Makucha stubbornly pursued Ajabu, which forced him to flee to the Pride Lands for safety.[1]

Flight from Makucha

Beshte: So, Ajabu, are you a zebra? Or a...giraffe?
Ajabu: Neither! I'm an okapi.
—Ajabu meets Beshte[src]

Ajabu meets Beshte, a member of the Lion Guard.

When Beshte the hippopotamus attempted to hide in a bush during a game of hide-and-seek with his friends, he encountered Ajabu. The two introduced themselves, and Beshte expressed confusion over Ajabu's species. Ajabu explained that he was an okapi and that he lived in constant fear of leopards, who preyed upon okapis. Beshte reassured Ajabu that there were no leopards in the Pride Lands, then proceeded to sing "Life in the Pride Lands", during which he gave Ajabu a tour of the kingdom.

Shortly afterward, Bunga and Ono approached Beshte, which prompted Ajabu to hide. Beshte attempted to explain his encounter with Ajabu to his friends, but Bunga and Ono theorized that Beshte had simply created an imaginary friend. For a while, Beshte dropped the subject, but while scoping the Pride Lands with the rest of the Lion Guard, he led them on a frenzied chase after a figure he believed to be Ajabu. The chase ended in failure, and Beshte was criticized by Bunga and Ono for trying to make them believe in such an unbelievable animal.

Beshte saves Ajabu from his old adversary, Makucha.

Meanwhile, Ajabu decided to come out of hiding in order to introduce himself to a herd of zebras. He was approached by the lead zebra, Thurston, who inquired about Ajabu's species. However, the conversation was swiftly interrupted by the arrival of Ajabu's nemesis, Makucha the leopard. Ajabu took off in a panic, with Makucha in hot pursuit, and happened to run past the Lion Guard. The team raced to his rescue, and together, they ran off Makucha.[1]

Induction into the Pride Lands

Simba: You're welcome to stay in the Pride Lands.
Nala: For as long as you like.
Ajabu: Oh, thank you, Your Highness! Thank you!
—Ajabu, Simba, and Nala[src]

With Makucha defeated, Ajabu thanked the Lion Guard for saving his life. He then expressed awe at the existence of honey badgers, for he had previously doubted their existence. Beshte wondered what Ajabu would do next, and the okapi resigned himself to returning home, even if Makucha were awaiting him there. Just then, Kion got an idea, and he brought Ajabu before his parents, Simba and Nala, who allowed Ajabu to become a resident of the Pride Lands.

To celebrate Ajabu's new status as a Pride Lander, the Lion Guard decided to play hide-and-seek with him. No sooner did they make this suggestion when Ajabu vanished, and Bunga commented that he was quite good at disappearing.[1]

Physical appearance

Ajabu is an okapi with a tall neck, a slender build, and large ears. His main pelt is dark brown, while his haunches and legs are striped with black and white like a zebra's. He has distinctive white markings on his face, a gray muzzle, and furry brown inner ears. A short brown mane runs from his forehead to the base of his neck.[1]

Personality and traits

Beshte: How come you were hiding in the bushes?
Ajabu: It's what I do.
Beshte: Hide in bushes?
Ajabu: Oh, not just bushes. I hide behind trees, behind rock piles... Oh, if I see a hole, I'll hide in that hole.
—Ajabu and Beshte[src]

Ajabu encounters an unfamiliar animal, revealing his excitable and untrusting nature.

Ajabu is shy and skittish as a result of having been hunted by leopards his entire life. He is loath to trust new animals and always errs on the side of caution. This lifestyle has molded him into a skilled and stealthy hider, to the point that he is able to vanish from sight within seconds.

Once befriended, Ajabu is friendly and well-mannered, as well as more playful and willing to show off his skills and talents. He puts a great deal of trust in his friends and is appreciative of their charity and loyalty, as seen when he extensively thanked the Lion Guard for saving his life.[1]

Appearances

Trivia

  • Ajabu's name means "amazing, astonishing" or "wonder, amazing thing" in Swahili.[4]
  • In real life, male okapis have skin-covered horns called ossicones. However, Ajabu has none.[6]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Revealed in "The Imaginary Okapi" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 14, Season 1. Written by John Loy and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired July 8, 2016.
  2. Ron Funches. IMDb. IMDb.com. Retrieved on July 11, 2018.
  3. Revealed in "The Golden Zebra" from Disney Junior's The Lion Guard. No. 14, Season 2. Written by Elise Allen and directed by Howy Parkins. Originally aired January 9, 2018.
  4. Online Swahili - English Dictionary. African Languages. Retrieved on February 6, 2021.
  5. Revealed in The Mystery Zebraffe from The Lion King: A Nature Fun and Learn Series. Issues 72 and 73 (1995–1997).
  6. Bennett, C.L., Green, M.N., and Lindsey, S.L.. The Okapi: Mysterious Animal of Congo-Zaire.
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