Dragon Fire: Episode 31

 

 

As he stared up into the gleaming eyes, fear drove Terrin to flee. But the warrior within brought his hand to his sword. When he opened his hand to embrace the hilt, the creature let out a low growl.

“Do not do that,” a deep voice warned behind him. “You will only anger them.”

Terrin paused then brought his hand down to his side in a position of readiness.

“Speak quickly. Who are you, and why have you come here?” the voice asked.

“I am Terrin. It is said that I may be the son of a king, but I have no memory of my life, my country. I came to these woods for rest from my journey, to where I know not.”

“There is a power in you, a deep one. One that does not come from gods,” the voice spoke.

“I do not understand this power. I mean no harm. I am only running from those whom I have hurt,” Terrin explained.

“You have brought suffering to others?” the voice asked.

“That is not my purpose. Someone is hunting me, and they have almost killed my friends trying to get to me,” Terrin answered.

“So they exiled you?” the voice asked.

“They do not know I ran away. I brought too much danger to their lives, so I had to leave their company,” Terrin said.

A man suddenly stepped around from behind Terrin, the man of the voice. He stood almost eight feet tall and wore a large cloak that shielded all but his eyes. Holding up two twisted, leathery black hands toward the creature that towered above, he said,

“Idrian. . .aserin. . .Idrian. . .aserin.”

Then he moved his right hand down to Terrin’s right and said,

“Olon. . .aserin. . .Olon. . .aserin.”

When the creature seemed calm, the man turned to face Terrin, the night casting a shadow over his eyes.

“They will not harm you unless you attack.”

“They?” Terrin asked.

The man raised his right hand, motioning to the creature above and said,

“Idrian.”

As his left hand swung around behind him, he called,

“Olon.”

A glistening black beast, whose form was as a fish with the legs of a dog, ran past, disappearing into the shadows beside the large, green-eyed creature.

“What are they?” Terrin asked.

“They are guardians of these woods, and I am their keeper. I am Atol.”

“We are outcasts. Our appearance is not favorable to men. The local villagers bring supplies in exchange for our help, should they need it.”

When Atol suddenly looked up toward the moon and sniffed the evening air, his cloak fell aside and Terrin saw the faintest glimpse of a wolf-like snout.

“What is it?” Terrin asked.

“Trouble,” Atol said.

Without a sound, Atol suddenly leapt straight up into the boughs of a nearby tree. Terrin watched as he leapt from branch to branch. As Atol began to move away, he called down to Terrin,

“Use the light of the moon and follow if you like. They will not bother you.”

Terrin began running along the ground, trying to keep Atol in view. When he lost sight of him, Atol shook the branches and called,

“This way.”

At the edge of the forest, Atol dropped to the ground. Cautiously, he moved forward, peering into the darkness. Just outside the treeline, Terrin saw a young girl struggling to stand.

“Bring her to me,” Atol said.

Quickly, Terrin ran out to the girl. He saw that she had deep cuts across her face and arms, and her dress was blood soaked.

When he tried to pick her up, she cried out in pain.

Leaving the cover of the trees, Atol hurried over to the girl and bent down.

“What is wrong?” he asked. “What has happened?”

“Guardian of the woods,” she mumbled, “I am sorry. I could not bring you what you require. Our mines are empty, and wicked men have seized the town. I am sorry.”

She trailed off as her head went limp.

“She is gone,” Atol said, his voice laced with sadness.

Terrin felt a heat begin to rise within and break forth, igniting the nearby grass.

“Mind your power, young prince. Before this day is done, our rage will be satisfied and those who have brought this pain will pay with their lives.”

Atol stood up and turned toward the tree line.

“Idrian. . .Olon. . .serdon.”

From the forest came a low, deep bellow like a dragon’s roar. In fear and wonder, Terrin watched as a black panther the size of an elephant exploded from the woods, its black wings and spiked tail cutting through the air. Upon its massive back, rode Olon, the glistening fish beast.

As it charged straight toward him, Terrin felt his body go cold. Atol grabbed Terrin’s arm and warned,

“Hold on.”

When the creature Idrian spread its wings, Atol leapt up, pulling Terrin with him, and landed on the creature’s back just as it lifted into the air.

 

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Published in: on August 7, 2012 at 5:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

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