Before the Cave, part 31

Solemnly, Ilara took the necklace from the Shaman. She hesitated for a moment, and then she put it around her own neck.

And suddenly found herself in a different world.

Well, not exactly. It was the same world, only it looked different. For one thing, it had extra people in it, and mammoths too.

She looked at them more carefully. No, they weren’t people and mammoths exactly. They were something else. But what?

And then she had it. They were Spirits! She looked at the Shaman with surprise.

The Shaman smiled back. “You can see them, can’t you?” Ilara nodded, words failing her.

“You have the sight,” the Shaman continued. “I’ve never had it, and neither has anyone in our tribe for a long time. It comes back only when our people need it.”

“Actually, it comes back only when both of our tribes need it,” she heard another voice say, a much older voice. She turned to look. It was the mammoth Elder, speaking to her. And she could understand!

Then she heard a far more familiar voice. It was her mammoth friend. “And I can understand your humans too. It looks like you and I have a lot to figure out. Now that we are both Shamans.”

Ilara smiled. “Well, we can always ask the Spirits. I have a feeling there’s a lot they want to tell us.”

She reached her hand up affectionately, and touched the trunk of her fellow Shaman. Today was the end of a chapter in both their lives. But the next chapter was still waiting to be told.

End of Book I

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