When everything in the tribe went back to normal, Shao Xuan’s life resumed its old pattern.
He would go out on hunting trips every twenty or thirty days, then return to the tribe, and do stone crafting, learn about setting traps from Old Ke, and train with Caesar and Chacha.
In the blink of an eye, half a year passed by. During that time, Shao Xuan extended out his cabin. Under the guidance of Old Ke, he even integrated stone materials into his cabin, and turned his little shelter into a wood-stone house. It was tougher than before. In the aspect of architecture, he indeed wasn’t as talented as Old Ke and the others. So, all he could do was to build the house following Old Ke’s guidance.
The newly-built wooden stone house was one time larger than Old Ke’s place, and even had space for a separate stone crafting workshop. Old Ke’s equipment had already been moved into that room. When Shao Xuan was doing the stone crafting, Old Ke would just sleep in the next room. He didn’t mind the noise, and would always come to teach Shao Xuan a thing or two when he woke up.
When Shao Xuan went out hunting, Old Ke would constantly sit beside the window to bathe under the sun when he wasn’t doing stone crafting or training Caesar and Chacha. Every time Ge stopped by, he would sigh with satisfaction, seeing that Old Ke was enjoying his life like that. Just over a year ago, who would have expected Old Ke to have such changes in his life?
Chacha was growing fast. It had been almost half a year since it hatched.
Caesar’s den was built somewhere near the main door so he would be able to learn about the outside situation once there was movement. Shao Xuan was completely keeping him as a dog. However, Chacha had his nest built on the roof. Shao Xuan made it especially for Chacha.
With Chacha’s presence, no night swallow would ever dare to get close to the house. Sometimes, a few night swallow’s bodies would be found in the morning besides Chacha’s nest. He had no intention of eating them. When he pecked them to pieces, he would take the remains to the river and drop them into the river for all those big-head piranhas to fight over the remains. He wasn’t only fierce, but also had creepy hobbies.
Shao Xuan had always assumed that it would require help from a third party for the little bird to learn how to fly. For instance, someone might need to push the bird down from some edges. However, the truth was, Shao Xuan didn’t need to worry about that at all. Chacha wasn’t a good boy since its first day, and he became even naughtier as time went by. He often jumped down from the stone desk, and before Shao Xuan noticed it, Chacha learned how to fly, and he could fly decent enough. From morning till night, he would mess with Caesar by constantly pecking him. When Caesar was about to get serious, Chacha would immediately fly high up, so that Caesar wouldn’t be able to do anything except let out his anger on the ground.
One time, when Shao Xuan got back from a hunting mission, he was summoned by the Shaman. At the mountaintop, when he took Chacha to the Shaman, he encountered Chief Ao, who was speaking with the Shaman about some matters.
Chief Ao said that Chacha might be the relative of a bird called Giant Mountain Eagle. He might even be a close relative of that eagle, but not as large as that. Even so, Chacha was still one of the predators, and compared with the other kinds of birds, he was big in size.
The first idea that Shao Xuan had when he learnt about that was…Well, no wonder he had such a fucking big appetite!
The little bastard could eat a lot while he was still a baby bird. Also, he was very picky. Now, as time went by, it grew larger and larger, and could now fly on his own. But most of the times, he would get food from Shao Xuan, and would occasionally hunt for snacks, because Shao Xuan wouldn’t allow him to fly too far.
As for the exact look of the Giant Mountain Eagle, Shao Xuan had no idea, for he had never seen it before. Most people in the tribe had never seen it, but it was said that in a place far away, there was an Eagle Mountain, and the Giant Mountain Eagle lived there.
With no confirmation on Chacha’s species, Shao Xuan could only speculate his character based on the living habits and characters of Giant Mountain Eagle. If he really was a close relative as Chief Ao had said, then they must have something in common.
The Giant Mountain Eagle was famous for its cold-blood cruelty, and they would fight each other even if they were blood-related. When there was an inner fight, they wouldn’t have a death fight. But for those non-related birds or animals, they would definitely aim for their lives. Even when they won, they would chase their competition to death in the end.
Based on Shao Xuan’s observation, Chacha was developing the same character as the Giant Mountain Eagle. Luckily, he was tamed and trained since childhood, so his temperament was not so aggressive.
“Have you found good stone cores, again?”
Old Ke stood by the window, and he noticed Shao Xuan carrying back two giant stones from the training ground.
“Yep. I think they are good enough to make a few spearheads, and the remaining stone flakes can be made into stone needles for setting traps later.”
Shao Xuan put the two stones into his workshop, and he heard the voice of a bird from outside when he finished drinking his water.
He went out the door, and stared at the bird circling above his head. He waved to the bird, and clearly, the bird received the signal, for he chirped in the sky and flew away.
“Chacha went out to play again?” asked Old Ke.
“Yeah. Luckily, he knows not to fly too far away, and he would return home when it’s time.” Shao Xuan came back home and sat down.
“He’s still young. When going out of the tribe, there are a lot of ferocious birds in the sky. Chacha is still no rival for them.” Old Ke was a little concerned.
“Don’t worry, he’s smart enough.” Said Shao Xuan.
He was not lying. Chacha indeed was full of wicked ideas. He was much smarter than Caesar and rarely would he be bullied.
Seeing that Caesar was following Shao Xuan from the training ground, Old Ke asked after a long silence, “Do you plan to take Caesar out onto the hunting field, since you have trained him so much?”
Shao Xuan nodded, “I intend to take him out for hunting next year.”
“Do you mean that?” Old Ke was still worried.
Although he had seen Caesar being trained by Shao Xuan during this year, and Caesar obviously had learned how to cooperate with Shao Xuan, the real hunting field was filled with danger. There were too many unpredictable factors, and any slight mistake could cause an irreversible effect.
“It’s only an intention of mine. I’ve heard from Uncle Mai that we might be hunting some rare prey next year, so I made the proposal to him. He said that he would think about it. But when the time comes, Caesar would need to make a performance in front of the other warriors.” In fact, Mai could totally decide on the affairs in the hunting group, and the others wouldn’t disobey him even if they had different opinions. However, Shao Xuan would like the others to fully understand Caesar’s capacity. It would be such a pity to waste good help.
Shao Xuan knew that there were some rare prey that would be difficult to track down, given that he had been participating in quite a few hunting missions. But with Caesar and his sharp sense of smell, the situation would become much easier.
Now, Caesar was doing very well in the aspect of speed. As for reacting, fighting and adapting…Shao Xuan and Caesar were still working on that.
Caesar was almost the same size as the wolves in the forest, but he lacked the bloodlust. No one in the tribe was afraid of Caesar now.
Since Shao Xuan made the decision, Old Ke wasn’t planning to disturb him, “If he still needs more training, you may have more time to train him during the winter when the hunting period ends.”
“Well, winter…” Shao Xuan looked at the few normal looking leaves that were left on the wooden shelf, “I’m afraid that this winter won’t be relaxing.”
He wanted to learn something about herbs from the Shaman, and he had mentioned about this idea when he was summoned by the Shaman. Since he had no idea whether it was a proper request to make, he tentatively raised the topic once in a euphemistic way. To his surprise, the Shaman agreed.
Many warriors in the advance group knew a thing or two about the usage of herbs, but none of them had any clear understanding of it. The others in the tribe had never brought up similar requests. Perhaps they thought that all they had to do was to trust the Shaman with his ideas, and they would ask for the Shaman’s help when necessary, so they did not have to spend their own time on learning it. Or perhaps, they thought that only the Shaman was capable of learning something as advanced as that, and the others couldn’t.
In fact, the Shaman was quite delighted when Shao Xuan brought up that he wanted to learn herbalism from him. However, normally, Shao Xuan’s time was very limited. So, the Shaman asked him to come to the mountaintop in the winter, when there were no hunting missions.
That’s why Shao Xuan said that he would be busy in this coming winter.
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