Journal entry 1
My village of Jiwa has sat upon the outskirts of Kiet Siel, for countless generations, tending to the cattle. Our warriors are strong in heart and sprit. We draw strength from the animal sprits to protect our people, so it has been for generations. My father, Chief Manisai, has lead our village for years, and I, Mahsi would follow in his footsteps someday. This is what I have believed since I was a boy, but no more.
A sickness has taken our lands, this blight affects both plant and animal, twisting them into something wretched and perverse. We believed this blight would pass, for plague is not unheard of, but we were fools. This was nothing natural, no amount of waiting would see it gone.
One night as I returned from a hunting expedition, I came upon my village, aflame, the alarm bells sounding. I dropped my catch and sprinted to my home spear in hand. I found my mother and father, laying broken before my home. Screams rang out from the far side of the village, but I stood there rooted in place. My sister, hobbled out of the doorway, blood matted her dress. I caught her as she fell.
I only remember one thing she said to me before she died, there in my arms. “Big brother, your home now it will be okay right?” Those words are etched forever in my mind.
I laid her peacefully upon the ground, and laid my cloak over her small body. White hot tears streaked down my face as I set out to reap my vengeance. I came upon it surrounded by a ring of warriors, It appeared to have once been a boar, but now it towered easily half again as tall as me. It bellowed and bucked, each swing of head threw a man. A smarted man would have fled, but rage is a funny thing, it knows nothing of fear. I drove my spear deep into its flank, it retaliated with a kick to my chest. I remember the feeling of crashing through a hut, but nothing else.
I awoke, in the tent of the medicine woman, Baba. Her daughter, and my dearest friend, Yali tending to me. Three days had passed, the beast had escaped , after murdering 15 of my tribesmen and driving off or herd. Yali looked at me and I could see the joy in her eyes, joy of me living. I regret to say that at the time I did not share her joy.
I healed slowly over the next week, Yali by my side, and slowly I secretly planed my hunt. The elders came to me not long after my awakening, to proclaim me chief, the title they said was rightfully mine, I refused, and when they pressed the issue, my temper broke and to my shame I can never take back the words that were said.
I gathered my things and left that night, Yali met me at the door. She demanded to come with me, the beast had taken her father as well. I saw in my mind her laying at my feet broken and lifeless like my family, I could not bare such a thought. I pulled out the necklace my sister always wore, the only thing I kept from them, and gave it to her. I promised to return for it, dragging the beasts corpse behind me. Reluctantly she allowed me to leave.
I followed the beast for a full cycle of the moon, living off of what I could scavenge. I tracked it to its lair, a cave against the side of a mountain. I set up my trap and waited for the beast to emerge. And when it did I leapt upon it, stabbing at its eyes and face. How long the battle lasted I can not say, but in the end I slew the beast, but even as I did its tusk swung through my guard and plunged through my chest.
In that moment as my foe lay dead and I lay there mere inches from deaths door, I was visited by one of the animal sprits. A black lion appeared before me, and offered me a choice. I could be content to have defeated my foe, and gained my vengeance, or I could return and destroy the evil the brought such a creature into existence. If I accepted, it would give me a part of itself, that I might live. I consented.
It told me, after it had done its work, to seek out Eluwilussit of the Halloka tribe in the north. He would point in my way.
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