Chapter 9

When spring arrived the hunters from Lion, Aurochs and three from Wolf Camp came for the horse training. It would be some time before they had horses for all the camps but Ayla thought that they could supply all the camps given time. Over the next two weeks she and Torvon taught the hunters to ride and take care of the needs of the animals. When they left headed back to their camps she, Torvon, Danug and Latie headed back to the valley. When they arrived Ayla and Latie went to the stream below the cave and looked for all the firestones they could find. When they returned to the small earth lodge they noticed that there were about fifteen foals in the surround. They would have to leave Brown and when they came back half way through the summer meeting the breeding season should be over.. When they talked to Latie she said that she and Byron would return with them for the last half of the summer. Two couples from Aurochs camp would stay the first half of the summer. As they were getting ready to leave the valley they stopped by the clan lodge and noticed that the cave bear skull was hanging over the entry. Durc came and told Ayla that Ura had her first moon time during the early winter and she had spent that time in the cave. He also said that Uba had told him that Ura had been Blessed and should have the baby in late fall or early winter. Ayla said that they would be coming back during the middle of the summer and they might stay until she delivered or they could return to Lion camp with them until the baby came. This year the meeting was at Lynx camp and they would be leaving as soon as they got back to Lion camp. The morning after they made it back to Lion camp they left headed east toward Aurochs camp and then both headed north for the meeting. When they arrived she went to the Mamutii lodge to talk to Lomie. The older woman greeted her and told her that she had the best winter she had had in years. Only once did she have a problem and it was only a cold. They went outside and sat talking when they noticed Norm walking their way followed by the young filly. Lomie said, “He spends so much time with her that he does not have time for the girls, and he named the filly Allie. When he arrived he greeted them then sat next to Lomie while the filly stood next to him with her head on his shoulder. Just then a young woman named Mygie walked by and noticed him with the young horse. She stopped and was talking to him about the filly and after a moment the couple left with the filly walking between them. The two women turned and smiled at each other. Ayla said, Well it looks like she was drawn to the man and the horse. Lomie said, I hope more to the man. And both laughed. Ayla spent most of the summer meeting with the Acolytes and some of the healers teaching them how to stitch up wounds. As the first matrimonial approached a herd of mammoth were seen moving toward the glacier. Ayla and Torvon rode out to check for a spot where they could drive the animal into. They found a passage through that had been blocked at the other end but it would give them a place to take down the animals they drove in to the pass. When they returned they told the leaders about the pass and that it would be easy to drive the animals into it. The next morning Ayla, Torvon, Latie and Byron rode out to help half the hunters drive the mammoths into the trap. Once they were ready they lit the torches and started moving toward the animals. When they smelled the smoke they started moving away from it. A cow and several others tried to move in another direction but the riders were there to stop them and herd them back to the others. As the herd entered the pass the hunters moved up on the rise on each side of them. When they reached the end of the pass the animals tried to turn back and that was when the hunters started throwing. When it was all over they had taken down ten animals and one was a young white male. Vincavec and two other Mamutii came forward and supervised the processing of that animal, the spears in the white one belonged to Ayla and Latie of Lion camp. Though the meat would go to the Mamutii the hunters got their choice of the parts they wanted. Ayla chose part of the hide of the animal and an ivory tusk. Ayla would give the hide to Mamut for the mammoth hearth. Latie chose the tail and another section of the hide. When they returned to the camp Ayla and Latie started working the hides and then put them in frames to dry. Ayla had put her close to Mamut's sleeping area and when he came in and looked at it he told her that it would be best displayed as it was now in the frame. Ayla talked to one of the woodworkers about building a better frame for it and he said that they could use one of the smaller frames they made for the looms. A few days later at the celebration after the first matrimonial Ayla presented the framed hide to Mamut for Mammoth hearth. He took the gift and said, Daughter, you have made me a very happy man. I am glad that the mother let me stay long enough to help train you. Later after everyone had left to party Ayla sat with Mamut and talked. He said, Ayla, it was not an accident that the clan found you those many years ago. The Mother and Ursus had planned it. Creb and Iza were to train you in the ways of the clan and after their deaths you were sent here for me to continue their training. I do not know the plans that they have for you but I know that you have a destiny that must be fulfilled. Ayla replied, But Mamut, what can one woman do in a world as large as this with all its people? He smiled and said, Daughter you have already impacted more people than you realize by just meeting them. Look at the changes that have been made with the Mamutoi alone. They held a Mother festival a few days later and Norm asked her if she would share pleasures with him and she had agreed, in fact she spent the entire night with him again. They pleasured each other several times but the rest of the time they had spent talking about things they were both interested in. When she returned the next morning she got another round of teasing from Torvon, he had shared pleasures with Mygie and several others. The training had gone well and Lomie had asked her to stay and complete the training for the healers and acolytes, Latie, Tornic and their families went to spend the last half of the summer in the valley. Later that night while laying next to Torvon after sharing pleasures she thought about Mamut's comment about what the spirits had planned for her, she was happy living with the Mamutoi and did not want to leave the only family she had known since leaving the clan. That night after falling asleep she awoke with a scream, all she could remember was a great sense of loss. The next morning she told Torvon that she still could not remember the dream or what had frightened her. Over the next few days the dream stayed close in her thoughts. She knew that something terrible was going to happen but could not figure out what it was. The summer progressed but Ayla was more subdued than anyone had ever seen her before. They worried that something might be wrong so Torvon had asked that Lomie examine her to make sure. Once she had completed her examination Lomie said that there was nothing wrong with Ayla that a better diet couldn't help since she was blessed again. Ayla looked at the older healer and smiled wondering how she had missed the signs. After that she was much better but there was still something that she couldn't understand. She only hoped that she could figure it out before the baby arrived. It was getting close to the end of the summer meeting and everyone was ready to go back to the camps to prepare for winter. Lion and Aurochs camps would go to the valley and hunt with the clan to make sure that all had enough food for the winter. They would leave and travel toward the west just north of Lion camp and then turn to the southwest. When they were on the trail Talut said that they would pass just south of Oak camp of the Sungaea. As they were getting close to the camp Ayla started getting a sick feeling but it was too soon for it to be related to her pregnancy. Then she broke out in a cold sweat and the ground started rumbling and shaking, she grabbed Whinny's neck and told Torvon to get Mamut down from her back. Brown was getting hard to handle as well but Torvon had already taken Crozie off him. Once the shaking stopped Talut told everyone that they need to swing by Lion camp and check to make sure everything was alright there. But Ayla said, Send two hunters, the shaking came from the north and the Sungaea camp is probably in its path. Talut sent Frebec and Druwez to Lion camp and the rest turned north toward the Sungaeain camp. When they reached the ridge that overlooked the camp the destruction was horrendous. What was left of the earth lodge was still burning and there were people still running around trying to save as much as they could. They had started down the hill when another large man with red hair and beard came forward and stopped. He said, Why are Talut and Lion camp here at this time? Couldn't you wait until we were dead before you came to take from us what little we had left? Talut looked at the man and replied, Nortal that comment was uncalled for. Lion camp has never raided any other camps and we haven't now. We were on our way back home after the summer meeting and were just south of here when the ground started shaking. But Talut Lion camp is to the east of here. We were going to the west on a joint hunt. replied Talut. And our healer felt that we should come to check your camp. Ayla stepped forward and asked, How many are injured? As he was about to answer her he noticed the wolf standing beside her and asked, How does a healer control a wolf?Ayla looked down at Wolf and gave him the signal to stay then stepped forward and said. I raised this one from a pup as you would raise your own child. He does what I ask for no other reason. After a moment the leader answered and said, We have many children that were injured when the ground started shaking and one has a large cut on his right side and we cannot stop the bleeding. Ayla looked at the man and said, Take me to him at once. We do not have much time. She asked Torvon to please bring her medicine bag.†Ayla followed the leader while Lion and Aurochs camps set up their tents in the clearing just south of what was left of the earth lodge. When they entered the tent where the boy was Ayla removed the covering and looked at the wound. The large vain was cut but not all the way through. She asked if they had a healer and was told that the man had been one of those that had died in the quake, but his acolyte was here. She looked at the small young woman and said, I will need you to mix certain powders for me and also help when I try to repair the damage to the blood tube. Can you do that? The acolyte asked, How can you repair the tube? Ayla replied, It will not be easy but if you do as I ask when I ask we can do it. While Ayla and the acolyte were preparing what she would need Lion and Aurochs camps started trying to help clean up the area around the lodge. Several were trying to put out the fire but Talut told them to let it burn, it would make it easier to build the new lodge because they wouldn't have to clear away so much of the rubble from the old one. He sent out parties to start rounding up the things they would need when they started building the new lodge. There were several piles of driftwood, bone and Ivory in the area and Torvon and Danug took the horses and started bringing it back to the camp and started stockpiling it. Talut and Nortal talked about the new lodge and where they should put it. Talut said, We should build it where the old one was. The ground will need to be built up again but the lodge would be easier to build here. When the two leaders walked into the tent where Ayla was working on the boy Nortal was surprised that she was trying to sew the blood tube closed. Talut said, This is something she has done before. Once the tube is closed she will close the gash in the boy's side. Ayla was too involved in what she was doing to pay attention to what Talut was saying. She was telling the acolyte how to hold each side the tube closed until she told her to release it. After she had put six stitches in the tube she had the acolyte let go of both sides and there was only a slight seepage. She told her to sprinkle the powder on the tube and they would close the larger wound. She made sure to disinfect the wound before they started sewing it up, and it took eight stitches to close that. After she was finished with the boy she noticed that there were a number of children that had been burned. She sent the acolyte out to find some Aloe Vera plants and bring back as much as possible. She went to each child and cleaned the burns with cold water and then rinsed them with another disinfectant. Once the acolyte returned they squeezed out the juice onto the burns then bandaged only the most sever in order to cut down on infection. She told the mothers to apply the Aloe every few hours and if they needed more to see her, it would make the children feel better. She and the acolyte went back out and brought in more of the plants so they would be ready. She also found a few other plants and brought them back as well. She had seen how stressed the mothers of the camp had been so she started brewing a tea and invited all the woman to a session to teach them what to do for the injuries of the children. After the meeting was over Nortal noticed that the women were much calmer than they had been before. They also knew what to do for their children. Several had stayed and talked to Ayla after the meeting and one was Nortals mate Herna the child with one of the very severe burns was her son Norton. Over the next few days the three camps prepared the ground and started building the new lodge. Ayla and the women started replacing those items that had been destroyed and there were many new baskets and mats made. Ayla and the women of Lion and Aurochs camps started making wooden bowls and cups that she had shown them how to make. They had been in the Sungaea camp for almost a moon now and the camp was better than it was before. They women of the three camps had become good friends and wanted to keep it that way. Talut and Nortal both stated that they would both speak to their councils in order to find a way to heal the rift that had come between them. Three days later they were on their way back to the valley to see how Ayla's clan was doing. When they arrived they found out that the quake had been felt here but there had been no damage of injuries to anyone it the camp. When they checked the surround they found a number of new foals in the surround and that pleased both camps. As they started back Durc came running up and told Ayla the Ura was in labor and Uba needed her help. When she arrived Uba said the baby was turned the wrong way and that the cord could be wrapped around its neck. Ayla ask Uba to give her a relaxing tea and she made a disinfectant to wash her hand with. Once Ura was relaxed Ayla told her, I am going to reach up inside and try to turn the baby and check to make sure that the cord was not around its neck. As she ran her hand up into the birth canal she encountered one of the child's feet, she started working to try to move the child around then she encountered what felt like the head. She looked at Uba and when Ura's eyes were closed she signed. Either she is having twins or the baby may be deformed. Uba looked down at the young woman that she considered a daughter and sent a prayer to Ursus. When she had the child turned properly she felt the head a second time and smiled at Uba. The contractions started again a few hours later and before dark Ura had delivered two healthy babies a boy, then a girl. Uba went the Vorn and signed, This medicine woman is pleased to say that the woman Ura had given birth to a boy but also a second child which was a girl. Vorn, Goov and Brun went to the hearth and looked at the child and Vorn announced, Both are just as deformed as the mother and her mate. Goov said, They are not deformed Vorn, they are part clan and part Other's as are the parents. These are the children of Ursus and must be protected by this clan. Ursus has said this in a dream. Vorn replied, If the children survive until their naming day they will be accepted and named by the clan. Over the next week the children gained strength and remained healthy. On the naming day Goov asked Durc, Do you have names picked out for them? Durc looked at his mother then said, Yes, I would like them to be named for the hearth family of my mother Ayla. Creb and Iza. Goov looked at Brun and Vorn before nodding and signing, It is as in my dream. Ursus has said that those were their names. The clan met outside and Ura presented the children to Goov and they were named. Ayla looked at the two children and then Ura and Durc and said, They are beautiful my son. And they will do great things for their clan. Four days later Ayla and Lion camp left for home with the year old fillies and colts. They had been able to trade those they had taken to the summer meeting now they would start training these for next year.