8d (Argentum’s Song – PG)

Martha stood rooted for an instant, staring in horror. The darker and smaller of the two creatures ripped off a particularly large strip which the larger snatched from its maw before it could swallow. The roar uttered by the victim of the robbery only earned it a solid cuff that sent it tumbling a few feet into the base of a boulder.

By this time Sniffly had accepted his fate, closed his eyes, and waited for death. Only whimpering now and then when the mud coloured Alpha took another bite.

Martha had to get away, now!

She backed away from the scene slowly. The smaller beast had gotten up and was whining pleadingly with the alpha. Then it’s ears perked up and it’s head swivelled, staring at the bush in her direction. The Alpha noticed its comrades change in posture, wiped the blood from its nose onto its fur and sniffed the air.

The last thing Martha saw before turning and bolting was the smaller one preparing to spring. Her arms were over her face protecting it from the branches and overgrowth slapping against her as she ran. Nearly blinded by tears she was hunched over staring at the ground, trying not to slip as her feet pounded away, trying to escape from what was pursuing her.

She couldn’t hear them and began to wonder if she had made it away and they had just resumed their meal. Then again she couldn’t hear much over the pounding of her heart, and the roar of her lungs desperately trying to pull in enough air to fuel her mad dash. She risked a backward glance.

The visage of black hairs jutting from her pursuer’s face at all angles was just meters away and closing fast. Time slowed down as her left foot caught on something and she started falling down. She had barley hit the ground before the monster cuffed her along the right arm, drawing parallel cuts along it and sending her rolling over. This left her with no choice but to look in detail at its yellowed and bloodshot eyes. It had her pinned and was opening its jaws for the kill.

A flash of dirty brown lightning dashed from the brush into the predator’s flank, knocking it off of her and into a tumbling mass. Martha’s unexpected saviour, pinned it’s inferior to the ground and snapped at its face. This time, however, the smaller weir wasn’t willing to be silenced. It howled back in rage, throwing all of its anger into attempting to dislodge it’s adversary.

The Alpha roared and raked its claws along the rebel’s chest. Finally the creature submitted, though its eyes were still locked hungrily on Martha’s throat. The Alpha had its face near the other’s ear now and was growling a string of guttural consonants.

Martha’s attention was fully captivated by the massive beasts. The weirs in the pass had been burnt in the pyre before she had had a chance to really see what they looked like, but they had seemed much smaller than these. Her eyes roamed up the Alpha’s fore limb taking in the details of the thick sweat and blood matted hair, not fur as she would have expected from the stories. Next, they took in the disproportioned shoulder, the neck projecting at an absurd, inhuman angle and finally stopped on the grotesque eyes boring into her.

It seemed to be studying her even more intently than she had been studying it. It sniffed deeply in her direction and it’s eyes portrayed a much deeper hunger than the previous monster’s had. This weir wanted to consume much more than just her flesh. Martha’s eyes darted to the smaller weir and she realized its blood lust had deepened into this new terrifying hunger too. She closed her eyes and waited for the end.

Long minutes passed and nothing happened. She opened her eyes and looked around unable to see the beasts anywhere. She got to her feet and spun in circles trying to see where they might have gone … were those red veined eyes peering at her from the shadows or just her imagination?

 

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