Nascha Shikoba

A watercolor of Nascha Shikoba back in her village

They say the owls stare into the night because they can see more than most. That they see the spirits around us. Some also say they stare because they see too much. I believe they both are right.

I can see more than most. My name is Nascha Shikoba (Noss-ka She-ko-bah in your tongue) and I have seen too much. I was born many moons ago. Twenty three moons to be exact. The owls were there for my birth. One flew into the tent when I was born, and a feather landed on my head. My name means Owl Feather. I keep this feather with me always.

When I was eight years old, I went out into the woods for plants. I got lost, but the owls guided me to a safe place. There I met The Owl, my guardian spirit. He taught me how to sneak, how to fight, and he taught me about the ways of all the spirits, not just the ones known to the other tribes and my own. Owl helped me get bigger, as big as a man almost. Most white men and women look at me wierd, they think I am too different. I am different, I see things they don't.

When I was twelve years old, our shaman came to me. Told me that I would be destined for great things, and I would leave the village sometime in the next four years. I knew this already, because I had seen it myself. He knew this, because he tested me. He said at first ten years, and I corrected him. I told him of my gifts, he said it was because Owl had blessed me with extra sight. Owl made me like Owl.

When I was sixteen, the Rangers came into town, they wanted people to work for them. Owl said I should go, so I went. I work for them now. I scout. I lead groups of rangers and others in and out the woods. It pleases Owl when I fight, so I make sure to follow up on my oath. I promised Owl that I would kill at least one person per moon cycle, and I do.

I have been working for the rangers for seven years now. Owl says some great change is coming. That I will be finding a new purpose for myself, while staying true to myself. Owl talks in riddles sometimes, but I know he is right, for I have seen it too.

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