Rasja's cheeks burned as she walked slowly down to the body of the Gani camp. She heard the words, but she hadn't needed to hear them. She knew them, sure as shit, and hearing them only made the rock-studded pasture within her mind all the more treacherous.
"Pay them no mind. Birds still fly. Pay them no mind." She whispered the words to herself when she was on the lonely track, out of sight and sound of the other shaman and the Gani. Each time she blinked, she squeezed her eyes shut. She sought the comforting solace of her own mind, and the time to ease the flush from her cheeks and for the brightness to creep back into her eyes. They needed her.
Upon reaching the bustling center, she sped her pace. Friendly insults, greetings and other calls were sallied back and forth. That's how it was for the Gani, and Rasja knew nothing else. She didn't really want to know anything else. She just wished. . .maybe hoped that one day she could be a peaceful shaman who helped her kin and didn't have to worry about anything else. Free to watch the sky, free to travel the --
"Oi, watch out!"
Rasja skittered sideways as one of the men rode by with one of the camp's few horses. She bit back a shriek, freezing momentarily in rigid fear. Breathe, breathe, breathe.
"You okay, Rasja?"
The concerned voice was a single glowing rope in the darkness of her mind, and she clung to it.
"Yarta, just the woman I needed to see. I seem to have misplaced my sling, could you help me look for it?" Rasja forced a gentle smile at the older woman, who waved at Rasja to follow. They traveled through the ordered chaos, the mass of human flesh ever moving as men and woman alike prepared for the battle to come. Even the children were muted as they were tasked with the ending chores for the day, and they ran helter skelter underfoot as they rushed to get it done. Under all of it was the tension, the eagerness and the readiness for this battle. They all hungered for glory.
The next chance peek at the sky revealed the sun to be melting behind the horizon. Soon now, soon. For the most part, clumps of Gani stood, armored or nearly armored as they tested the mettle of weapons and hide for the last time. They would move soon, at Juntara's word, and at the head of that column of people would be Rasja. She lifted her chin, shrugging her shoulders better into the leather armor she'd donned. Her sling was at one hip, a borrowed bludgeon in the other. She nodded thanks to Yarta, and the other nodded to blend back into the press of Gani.
The sunset really was a beautiful thing, and the near twilight enfolded the Gani camp in muted colors and swirling shadows. Rasja wondered why they never had the time to enjoy it.