Before the Cave, part 29

Ilara smiled back. “But what did I do to change things?”

“It is not what you did,” the Elder replied, gesturing to both her and her mammoth friend, “it is who you are. You are the bridge, the way for human and mammoth to finally be able to work as one. To communicate is the greatest gift the Spirits can give us. And the two of you have given us that gift.”

Ilara was humbled. She looked into the eyes of her mammoth counterpart, the other Ilara. For a moment she saw herself looking back.

“What now?” she asked the Elder.

The Elder gestured to the Shaman. “She will show you.”

The Shaman stepped forward, and to Ilara’s surprise removed her sacred necklace. Ilara could not remember a time when the Shaman had not worn that necklace. “You must take it now,” the Shaman said.

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