The Dragon's Cry

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After a moment of watching the chase, you realize that soon the time will pass for you to save her; the opportunity will have gone and in the end, you will find yourself wishing you knew that the little girl was all right. At least if you attempt to help her you can make a difference in her life and assure yourself that she is safe.

"All right!" you think, and suddenly you crow-hop into a full sprint.

"Dragonling! You get back here immediately!" the silver woman hollers behind you, but you continue on.

Through twigs and brush you find yourself in full pursuit of the soldier who is nearer the fleeing girl, and before you know it you are at the heels of the soldier. When he notices you behind him, the soldier stops and turns around to face you.


The sound of twisting metal and disjointed bones resonates through your ear canal. You didn't expect him to stop! It becomes evident, after shaking the stars from your head, that you are lying on the ground, more or less in a leisurely pose than anything else. From where you lay you can see the soldier on the other side of the field: he's slowly rising to his knees but is considerably dizzy (you can tell) because he constantly shakes his head while adjusting his helmet.

"Damn!" you think. "I'm never doing that again."

Your weredragon instincts come into play here: if you don't kill the soldier, he could kill you, or worst, if you don't kill him he could take you captive or alert others to your whereabouts. You glance around and see no sign of the silver woman. You had followed the chase too deep into the woods, and now it is only you and the soldier on the battlefield.

You use the end of your tail like a tripod to prop yourself up. It is difficult for you to stand; you can feel yourself wobble. The horizon shifts from side to side as you approach the kneeling soldier, but you can still pick your mark. With a half step back and a sudden raising of your leg, you aim between the armor plates where the mail provides a soft-spot to the ribcage. Your foot and claws embed themselves into the web, which is absorbed by with a low grunt.

Remarkably, the soldier does not go down or double over. Instead, he wraps his arm around your leg and tucks it inside his armpit. Then, standing up, the soldier forces you down with a thrust, throwing you back to the ground.

Your reaction is sudden. However, by throwing your tail to the side so that, like a cat, you can turn around and land on all fours, you also use the momentum to whip your tail across the soldier's face. His head bends to one side and his helmet flies off several yards. He releases his grip to tend to his wound by pressing both hands against his temples to rub the pain.

His face is visible for an instant, a moment in which you can make out his rough features, a dark brow and mustache, and even an expression that looked calm in discipline. You take advantage of his unawareness and thrust your head into the center of his chest, tackling him to the ground.

I wish I would have paid attention to Uncle Yulcero, you can hear yourself say. And to think all those times I laughed when he tried to teach me the Ten Death Points.

Yulcero wasn't really your uncle, but an elite soldier of the royal army who served as mercenary and assassin. He spent his off hours in your family restaurant, and in between customers, you would sit at his booth for hours listening to his fantastic war stories.

You wish he was here now; that way he could finish this soldier with a snap of the neck or a blow to the heart. At this moment, while you are on top of the soldier, the only thing you can think of is to grab his neck and strangle the life out of him. However, like your uncle, who was so advancedly trained in hand-to-hand-combat, this soldier has a countermove to throw you off.

The soldier reaches for your claws and peels your thumbs back to loosen your grip, and he is able to lift you up and over with his knee. He seems to also have an imaginary tail, as all of a sudden you find yourself spun around with him standing over your back, holding your arms behind you and pushing up.

"Fu --- aaahhk!" you scream at the top of your lungs.

The soldier releases one of your hands, but not without putting one knee on your collar bone (the same arm he holds) to keep you down; the metal of his shin guards works against your bone, as well as the tiny metal thorns protruding from his boots. You can hear the soldier's heavy breathing and grunts mix with the unsheathing sound of his dagger. You can even feel his weight shift across your back as he winds up to deliver his blow.

A bright glowing sphere consumes the view in front of you, and as the sphere approaches, you recognize it as the same projectile the silver woman used in the dungeon. The blast flies over your head and connects with the soldier, sending him backwards where he drops the dagger. You can see the silver woman in the distance, and she doesn't look very happy.

"Do not move!" she orders you with widened eyes.

You don't imagine you could, considering that you are still in shock at nearly being killed. You just sit where you're at, legs spread out and tail stretched over the ground.

"Beyno!" the silver woman says as she approaches the scene.

The word is hardly recognizable, and you stand in an attempt to join her side.

"Sit!" she commands. "You are not in good favor with me. I am in control now." And with that, you take your seat.

She speaks to you at of the corner of her eye, not removing her concentration from the fallen soldier, who is currently lying on his back, but seems to be sensible enough to stand.

"Sit!" the silver woman commands again, this time to the soldier, but to no avail.

"Oh shut up!" the soldier replies. "I have nothing to do with your sorcery, witch."

"Well I have everything to do with you," the silver woman snaps. "And, Beyno, I suggest you remain very cooperative."

What will you do?

Contributed by Michael Marquez

Things to consider while writing in this branch

  1. Just because Beyno is in a soldier's outfit doesn't necessarily mean he's a soldier, there could be other reasons for this.
  2. Why was he chasing the girl? What happened to her?
  3. How does the silver woman know him and vice versa?
  4. Where were you and the silver woman heading to?
  5. Silvera spoke of another. Who?
  6. What was in the package?
  7. Who are the Children of the Ring?
  8. What part does Shadow play in this?
  9. What was the connection between Silvera and Shree's father?
  10. Remember that Shree doesn't know Silvera's name or background yet.
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Last modified March 3, 2003