Black wings, thirty feet across, cast a shadow over the cliff face. Sand whipped and spun across the ground. The Ter’shuk’s shrieks rattled Erin’s bones but she kept silent from her perch. Below her D’aerul spoke in a series of clicks and small yelps. The soothing commands infuriated the Ter’shuk more.
“Be ready,” he said, and his scales morphed to a glistening onyx–the signal to attack.
Erin stepped off the limb and onto the beast’s back. In one fluid movement she drove her blade into what she hoped was a major artery. Blood, bright and full of life, sprayed and pulsed from the wound.
The Ter’shuk screeched and flailed, throwing Erin against the tree. She gasped for the air stolen from her lungs.
“Erin! Hold on.”
D’aerul charged. Using his weight he plunged the blade straight through the hunter’s chest, driving it toward the edge of the gorge.
“I’m sorry this had to be your fate,” he said, and withdrew his sword.
The Ter’shuk made no sound as it plummeted to its end.
D’aerul inspected Erin’s injuries. His scales fluctuated between violets and deep reds.
“I’m okay,” said Erin. “I think I may have broken my collarbone, but it’s not the end of the world.”
“I’m sorry. I should have been the one in the tree.”
“Look at me. I’m okay.”
D’aerul raised his head. His eyes touched her eyes. Before she could focus she felt the warmth rising through her skin.
“You never told me humans could change color too!”
© Amanda Makepeace
Part Eleven coming November 2nd.
New to Other Worlds? Start at the beginning.