The people gathered around her body, awed and heartbroken, dumbfounded and silent. She’d been their protector and guardian since well before a good many of them were even born. They knew not who felled her, for none was brave enough to confess to committing a crime so dark and heinous the punishment would be far worse than death. The truth would out eventually; braggarts rarely kept such horrific triumphs quiet long, and when word got out whoever it was would be sorry they’d ever been born.
In the meantime, they would collect what they could from her body. Meat for eating, fat for oil, bones for needles and structures and weapons, scale and hide for armor. Not a single ounce of her would go to waste.
That was what she would have wanted–to strengthen and protect her children even in death.