- I looked at the cave. The cave of the Water was what the eagles called it.
- The Tribe cats were killing us, eating us for food. We had to act, do something.
- This meant a battle. A great battle of the cats and eagles. We had to win, we were being killed off, our chicks dying from the cold while their mothers hunted for food. We would get our glory, we would show the cats never to mess with us again.
I was the only chick to survive, my brother died days ago waiting for mother, but she never returned. He screeched for her, begging for her to come home, but in the end he lost the will to live. He waited for our mother to come home, waited forever, but she never did. We lived off the snow that fell on the nest, but after awhile my brother refused to take it, I worried he would die of the cold later. He didn't put sticks around him for warmth, he just decided to die that day I guess. I still miss him, but I was almost a full grown eagle now, ready to have chicks of my own, but I could never bear to watch them die, or have them watch my own life ebb away. It was snowing today and I remembered the brother I once had, the one who promised to protect me, but now I had to protect his spirit, I couldn't die in vain after what he did, I'd never go that low.
I saw the mouse picking at the dull nut. I swooped down, catching it with my deadly sharp talons. I flapped my wings and took off, seeing the deadly Tribe cats eying me. I rose far above their reach, but they'd come back for me later. I found a high rock and roosted there, picked at my dead mouse. It wasn't too good, but it'd have to do today. Even though we never lived in groups like the Tribe cats, us eagles formed a kind of community. The head eagle had declared war awhile ago before he died, the new one said we should live the cats alone, but that didn't stop me from killing them to avenge my mother's death.
I guess I should tell you my name now, it is Cayea, in our language it means Avenger, Guidance of War.
Eve since I hatched the Elders wrote my destiny, and that was to lead my kind to battle, or die trying.
I looked at the Elder, he had written my destiny long ago and you had to believe it, everything he ever foretold was always true. The worst was when he predicted my mother's and brother's death, my father had told me that. It worried me when he would die, or predict the fall of our kind, but that couldn't happen, it was unthinkable. I wondered how I would lead my kind to war, eagles were asking me all the time, saying, "Lady Cayea, when shall we start the battle?" and, "Cayea, are little afraid the cats will kill us? Will kill you?" Only the Elder used our language now, and every eagle mother had to go to them to fit there destiny. My brother's was Freati, meaning Resisting, Un-breakable, which fit his destiny. It was obviously to die young, but grant glory to our kind, and the glory was sent to me, the Guidance of War.
"Jolea," I greeted and fanned out my wings in greeting. The Elder looked at me, at if to scowl.
"Cayea, dark times are coming, you must prepare war soon!" he wheezed.
"Elder, I must, but how? I need to lead all our kind to battle, that shouldn't be possible!"
"Cayea, all the eagles respect you, you will-" he was cut off by a cat ripping threw his body, a Tribe cat, a new and small one. "Jolea!" I screeched and batted the cat away with my talons, they fell, but so did my Elder. "Brook, quickly!" a Tribe cat hissed. The small cat ran with Jolea with her. I stared in horror as they did so. "Jolea." I quietly shrieked, he was gone forever. An eagle roosted next to me and I looked at them, piercing my eyes in a glare. "Cayea, I am truly sorry." they said, "The Elder will be mourned."
"Rethi, did you catch what he said?"
"Yes, he said, "Cayea, all the eagles respect you, you will die in battle from their praise." I opened my beak, but closed it again, I would die in battle, but who would kill me?
The new Elder, well we could not have one. Normally an Elder has a Follower. They train them and when the Elder dies the Follower takes their place. But Jolea had no Follower.
All the eagles had come to where Jolea had died. We mourned is death in silence, till some eagles broke it.
"Cayea, you should chose the next Elder!" a voice shrieked. It was Mollioi, a fighter and prey catcher. He was respected among most of or kind, if he called you to do something he meant it truthfully. I flapped my wings and rose to the Elder's Perch. I scanned at the mass of eagles, remembering namesakes. I reached my friend, Rethi and saw a faint light on him, he was to be the next Elder.
"Rethi is to be the next Elder!" I called, my screech rang from the boulders. Eagles looked at me, eyes respectful and knowing. Some looked like a better Elder, but it had to be the Protector of Family.
It was his destiny.
I killed a cat today, a cat called "Brook". I smiled at their death, it made me want to kill more.
I decided I would lead the war soon. I told the new Elder. Rethi nodded.
There was a meeting, all the eagles went.
"Eagles, I will lead you to fight soon, in days!" I called. Some cheered, others where afraid.
"We shall win, we shall teach those cats how we feel! We will take those grounds as our own, let no other animal hunt on them!" Eagles cheered, the new Elder just looked at me with worry.
"What about your destiny?"
"I'll deal will it, now I have an army to lead." Rethi looked at me, eyes clouded in fear. "Promise you'll come back?"
"I promise." but I wasn't so sure.
It was the night before I lead the eagles of war, Rethi and I were perched on a tree, staring at the moon.
"Cayea, do you really want to do this?" me friend asked.
"Rethi, it's my destiny, I have to full fill it, even if I die!" he looked at me sadly.
"I don't want to lose you, Cayea, it was hard telling you, since we were Learners, and little chicks, I couldn't find the right words. Cayea, I love you." Rethi murmured. I stared at him, not knowing what to say.
"Rethi, I'll die out there, you'll never see me again." I wondered aloud.
"That's what I'm afraid of..." he admitted.
"Yes, I don't want to lose a friend." I mumbled, but I guessed that wasn't what he meant.
"No...Cayea, will you be my mate?" I looked at him and shook my head.
"No, I do not love you like you love me, Rethi, I cannot. But promise you will give me your blessing for the battle?"
"I..I will." Rethi mumbled. He mumbled words of the Elders, and I felt power surge through me.
"Thank you, I'll never forget you in the Prey Sky, ever." Rethi looked at me with sad eyes.
I stared at the clouds as the rolled by. Eagles looked at my nervously, Rethi kept hopping back and forth on the Elder Branch. I was just staring at the sky like nothing was wrong. I was scared to die, but really, who wasn't? I flapped my wings and all the eagles followed me. My brown feathers rippled in the breeze, my brown eyes scanning for cats. I saw them coming up of their cave. I swooped down, catching one and throwing them to their death. The cats sprang at us, killing eagles as quickly as we killed them. My eyes found a smaller cat looking at me. I picked them up in my talons, blood running down their side, the cat howling in pain. I clenched, squeezing the life out of the cat, its lifeless eyes staring at me. I scanning the cave, eagles and cats were fighting each other everywhere. I was about to fly into battle again when weight smashed my wings. I craned my neck and saw two cats ripping at my wings. I shrieked and tried to fight back, but it was no use. I felt my blood warm myself, but weaken me at the same time. Eagles tried to help me, but cats batted them away like mice.
I was pinned to the floor, now three cats ripping my back feathers off. I screeched longer and louder this time, but was not saved. I found hidden strength in me and pushed up, the cats falling off. I saw my mother and brother looking at me, pride in their eyes. With my talons I clawed out their eyes and raked their backs. Their gasped and fell dead. I fell to the ground after them, panting with life.
"CAYEA!" Rethi's screech broke through the noise. He rushed towards me with fear. "Cayea, please don't die!" he murmured and clawed my wings. "You can't."
"Rethi, it was my destiny, now my life is over I choked. "Predict helpful futures, find a mate, do all the things I never could." I begged. Rethi looked at me, sorrow is his gaze.
"I wish I could keep you alive.." he regretted.
"Rethi, I'll never forget how loyal you were, I'll never forget the times we spent together." With that my head hit the floor, my spirit going into the Everlasting Skies.
- I watched Rethi from the Everlasting Skies, pride fell upon me. I played with my brother and mother again, and I was granted Watcher from the Eagle Wing. I was eating mouse when the Olden Elder called me. "Cayea, we have give you a choice," he mumbled. "would you like to rebirth?"
- I gasped, normally it was rare for eagles to do this, but if you were, you could be granted Olden Elder.
- I looked at him, "Yes, yes I would."
- "Good," I said as my spirit faded back to the world, "your name shall be Marei, Guidance of Wisdom." his words were drowned out by the hatching of my egg.
- I was in the world again, and this time I would not die young.