Shao Xuan knew that based on what he revealed, the Drumming tribe shaman would know something had happened to their fire seed. He didn’t know what the shaman would choose to do, not every tribe had the guts or determination to change their fire seed since it was directly linked to the survival of their tribe.
Compared to other places, Flaming Horn was the most active in their region.
Other than occasionally visiting the chiefs and shamans to discuss matters after the winter, he spent his time dealing with matters of the trading point. If he had extra time, he would usually be found polishing lenses.
In comparison to Shao Xuan’s calm lifestyle, the shaman from the Drumming tribe hadn’t had a good night’s sleep for seven nights since he returned from the Flaming Horn tribe.
The shaman was not old but he had similarities to the shaman in the Flaming Horn tribe. He looked fine but he had many thoughts running around his mind at any given moment. Every time he closed his eyes he would think about many things, things that happened or things that hadn’t happened. Many times he would scare himself into a puddle of sweat.
The shaman called for the chief to come talk about matters of their fire seed and business deals.
After a few days, the people lived like hibernating crocodiles, the tribe was quiet and everyone huddled in the warmth of their own homes.
The shaman, the chief and a few elders of the Drumming tribe came out from the house together. They each carried a face of solemnity. The rare sunshine felt cooler at that moment.
“Since we have made a decision, Fan Mu and I will go visit Flaming Horn again!” The shaman looked at the other side of the river. He let out a long sigh, the worried look in his eyes turned into determination.
For thousands of years, the Drumming tribe lived in relative peace but they had many hidden worries. The shaman and the chief knew well that the biggest one started two hundred years ago. The shaman then already had the idea of changing things but he had no idea how to do so. Now, under their leadership, they had the chance!
Hence, on the fifteenth day the shaman had left the Flaming Horn tribe, the shaman and the chief, Fan Mu, was spotted once again on the other side of the river.
Shao Xuan had given it much thought too. He wondered what the Drumming tribe would decide to do but no matter what choice they made, they would need time to think about it. He didn’t expect them to be back within fifteen days!
Ever since Yang Sui of the Rain tribe found out about the fire seed, he had been thinking about it until now. He still had no conclusion or course of action planned out.
After sitting down, the shaman from the Drumming tribe started to speak. “About the matter of the fire seed, could the Grand Elder tell us about it in more detail?”
Shao Xuan stared at the two for two seconds, the Drumming tribe people always preferred getting straight to the point which was quite similar to the Flaming Horn tribe. However, Shao Xuan didn’t directly tell them about the changes in the fire seed. He gave them a little context and stated some things that the two would sooner or later need to know.
“On the other side of the sea, there are some slave masters- no, there are many slave masters. I believe you already heard this from the Flaming Horn warriors.”
The two nodded. Ever since the arrival of Flaming Horn, the two tribes interacted quite a bit. It was hard to keep secrets like that since not everyone was as tight-lipped about matters. In addition to that, the Rain tribe was also here. Quite a few from the Drumming tribe already knew about how some of the Flaming Horn tribe came from the other side of the sea.
“There are a lot of tribes there but the tribes there are different. They don’t have fire seeds!” Shao Xuan could feel the eyes of the duo seating in front of him light up.
“A long time ago, the tribes there had fire seeds too. They called it the ancient fire seed, after that, they decided to fuse with the fire seed which is what we had done now.” After a pause, he continued, “I can mostly guess what you have decided to do but I have to remind you, the Rain tribe had known about the fire seed for a long time. They still haven’t decided on anything because there are many things to worry about.”
“Tribepeople like us gather together because of the fire seed. The fire seed is everything to us. If there is a fire seed, there is a tribe. But if the fire seed is gone, the tribe is gone. If the fire seed is extinguished, all the energy gathered from the tribespeople will disappear. On the other side of the sea, some tribes have completely disappeared. They become like our wanderers here, dispersed with no means to gather again. Even by knowing this, is your decision still the same?” asked Shao Xuan.
Fan Mu furrowed his brows, he couldn’t control his emotions as well as the shaman. It was obvious he had mixed feelings but the determination he had just now hadn’t dissipated.
The shaman said, “I have thought about this but I believe we Drumming tribe people are not easily swayed! We won’t disperse. No matter the state of the fire seed, we will stick together!”
Shao Xuan thought about it and agreed in his heart. Wasn’t it true? The Drumming tribe didn’t hesitate like the Rain tribe did. They were much more united and they had a strong sense of community. Under their tough exterior was a loyal heart to their tribe. The chances of people dispersing were much higher in the Rain tribe than the Drumming tribe.
They knew the Drumming tribe for quite some time now. Although the meaningful interactions were few, they were still able to deduce some things. From Shao Xuan’s observations, if the tribe was not short on food, the people wouldn’t travel anywhere. They would much rather choose to stay at their homes and were totally content with that life. They had no urge to go out into the world to explore even if they had an excess of water moon stones that were valuable for trade.
There probably were more hidden problems in the tribe that Shao Xuan didn’t know of but for them to make such a large decision within a matter of fifteen days really shocked Shao Xuan.
“Are you… really sure?” asked Shao Xuan.
“Yes!” Fan Mu slapped the table as if to cheer for himself and gather courage. He stood up and bowed to Shao Xuan in line with the Drumming tribe’s customs, “We also hope you can help us!”
As he spoke, Fan Mu took out an animal skin scroll from his sack. It was a pledge. Any request would have a price, everything listed on the scroll was decided by the leadership in the Drumming tribe after their discussion.
Shao Xuan quickly read the scroll and put it away, “I have to discuss with the Flaming Horn shaman and chief, I will soon tell you the decision we make.”
“Thank you!” The shaman and the chief earnestly bowed to Shao Xuan. Their customs didn’t have the flare of ass-kissing and nonsense that the slave masters loved, theirs were much more direct, earnest and serious.