She smiled as Tavi caressed her face.
“I will see you when the sun catches the moon twice.”
But Tovi did not believe her sister.
They were very close, twins at that. Everywhere that Tavi went, Tovi did also. It was a mutual agreement. Something that they kept tucked away deep within their hearts. But it was far more than that. There souls were cursed.
Tavi once cut her hand deeply on a piece of chert while scraping hides with her mother. Tovi, helping her cousin on the other side of the village, screamed out in pain. Once when Tavi had helped on of her aunts with a sick baby, Tovi was the one to suffer with the fever her sister has caught. It took allot of explaining to convince both the girls of why this happened. When one girl would get hurt the other would feel it. That is because their souls were mixed up.
Mother talked about how the trickster thought it would be fun to switch Tavi and Tovi’s souls while inside the water world waiting for birth. The girls would just laugh at the stories until too many injuries proved their myth to be real. Mixed pains and hurts caused the girls to sit and listen to mother’s yarns. Just as the stories of the sun chasing the moon, the sister’s switched souls became infamous among their people. Stares often made the girls feel like outsiders.
The souls were not happy to be in the wrong bodies and they began to reek havoc. Sickness spread throughout the village rapidly and killed many of the strong. People were in panic; and never left their lodge but to gather what foods they needed. Tavi and Tovi were blamed and shunned. Mother cried often and begged for the spirits to fix her children. But they never listened and instead sent great droughts to starve yet many more of their strong people. Only chaos spread more rapid throughout the Crane clan.
After too much talk of witchcraft the elders decided to send one of the twins to a sister clan to seek the guidance of a great medicine woman. The woman was said to have the ability to replace souls to their right full bodies and bring Peace to a cursed village. It was the decision of the elders to send one girl ahead and the other one was to take the journey when the sun chased the moon across the sky twice. The girls would have to be separated at the time of the retrieval in order to hold the one soul away from the other. Souls were known to war with each other outside the body. It was decided that Tavi would leave first then Tovi would take the journey alone after wards. Any risks for the young girls had to be taken. After all, it was the life of the village that was at stake.
After the summer festivals had ended Tavi packed her food and hides and prepared to leave. Mother wept in the corner, as Tavi walked out to sit with her sister. But Tavi was strong and she would do whatever was needed to bring peace to her people.
“I love you Tovi, and remember to take care of yourself. After all you are taking care of me. If anything should happen to me along the way I will be sure to send your soul back to you unharmed.”
Tovi frowned and looked up at her sister. “Tavi, I hold it here in my heart that you will come back to me…but if your body does not survive, then our souls will war with each other.”
Tavi held an empty pot before Tovi and whispered. “If my soul comes back without me, put it in here until you find someone who dreams for the people. They are wise and they would know what to do.”
Tovi smiled weakly as her sister leaned to kiss her goodbye. Their black pigtails entwined and separated as Tavi rose to her feet.
“I love you too Tavi. I will come to you.”