A great warrior and a caring shaman, Sir Gilbert is a worthy leader of Jamaa. Where did he come from, and how did he become who he is today?
The night air was heavy and dark, perfect for a hunt. Like a night shadow Gilbert slunk through the undergrowth, stalking a jungle herd. Nocturnal creatures went about their business, their calls echoing into the night. There was no breeze to carry his scent to the unwary jungle deer. Gilbert's claws kneaded the damp soil, getting ready for the pounce. Bringing his powerful haunches under him he crouched like a coiled spring, when suddenly yells brought the night forest to life. Torches lit from all around, encircling the great tiger. Gilbert roared his fury into the night, joining the chaos of noise that had blossomed in the peace. A trap, those filthy humans set a trap. He remembered the night, not long ago when he took humans' animals. I should have learned, Gilbert growled to himself, humans will come back with death. The circle was closing in, the guns and eyes of the hunters shining in the firelight. Gilbert backed to the sloping trunk of a tree and knew what needed to be done. Twisting around he grabbed the trunk with huge paws, claws sinking deep. I thank the spirits for my fortune, he thought, climbing higher and higher up the great tree. Gilbert felt himself running with great speed, though he knew it to be impossible. Wind gave him wings, he felt as if he was running on air. Gilbert saw his life flash by, a life in the jungle, with adventures and mistakes. He felt himself leap into the sky, above the trees, then start to fall. He let out a roar, one of sorrow, rage, and regret. Falling down into a pool of shadow. One last look at the jungle, then embraced into the darkness.
It was dark, but also light. Warm, but cold. Solid, but shapeless. The spirit-that-was-a-tiger felt openings in the shadow, to worlds unable to imagine. Some of them light, others dark. One called to the spirit, a world of both dark and light, but a new one, one of opportunity. He felt himself pulled to it, like he belonged there. Suddenly he was rising, breaking to the surface of a lagoon. The night greeted him home once again, and on the sand strewn shore there stood other animals. Shamans ready to welcome him to the new land, Jamaa.
The End of the Beginning