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|Fate and Fury(Grey Wolves #6) by Quinn Loftis|
“How is it that there aren’t humans freaking out all over the place over a great big dragon being in the sky?” Lilly asked as they continued to watch the hovering beast.
“The draheim are magical creatures. They can only be seen by those who believe there is such a thing,” Thalion explained.
“Thalion, I noticed a small clearing about two miles east of here. I think it would be wise to lead the draheim there before we take it out.” Cypher’s eyes never left the sky as he spoke.
“Agreed.” It was the last word said before the draheim took a nose dive straight for them.
Cypher grabbed Lilly and threw her over his shoulder in one fluid motion as he took off.
“Here we go again,” Lilly yelped and grabbed onto his waist to steady herself.
The elves and Cyn were running alongside Cypher, having no trouble keeping up with the warlock.
The loud swooshing of wings caused Lilly’s head to snap up. Her pulse raced as she looked into the eyes of one very ticked off dragon.
“If you don’t mind, could you go a little faster please?” She tried to yell as she bounced against Cypher’s back.
“WHAT?” She heard him yell back.
“FASTER! RUN FASTER!” She screamed.
She felt Cypher pick up his speed and still the draheim seemed to be gaining on them.
Lilly swatted her arms at the hulking beast. “Shew, shew , go on, nothing tasty here to eat.”
Well, that didn’t work nearly as well as it does on the neighbor’s cat, Lilly thought. Her only consolation was that the creature had to stay just above the tree line. Its monstrous body wouldn’t fit in between the trees. Suddenly a ferocious roar filled the air.
“MOVE!” Thalion yelled. The group began weaving in and out and around trees. Like a synchronized team, they moved with such fluidity that an onlooker would have thought them performing a well-rehearsed routine.
“WHY ARE WE WEAVING?” Lilly hollered. The answer came without anyone speaking. A blaze of heat hit Lilly’s face as she watched the dragon rear its head back and blast fire from its mouth.
“Are you freaking kidding?” She yelled, this time to no one in particular. “It’s not enough that it’s a huge, flying, nearly impossible to kill dragon. No, it just had to have the added bonus of breathing fire!”
“Well, it is a dragon after all,” Cypher, grunted. Lilly felt herself being lifted from over Cypher’s shoulder as he put her on her feet and she saw that they had reached the clearing. Cypher pushed her back into the cover of the trees and pointed at her.
She crossed her arms across her chest as she glared at him. “I’m going to let that one slide since there is a gigantic freaking, fire breathing dragon flying behind you. Cypher swung around to see the beast diving into the clearing.
Cyn and the elves had all raised their bows as they stood as a united front against the draheim. Before any of them could get a shot off, the dragon roared more fire at them. They dove in different directions barely avoiding the blaze. Cyn was motioning with her hands and her mouth was moving as she faced the now burning trees and foliage. Lilly watched in awe as a light shot forth from Cyn’s hands. The light wrapped around the fire, enclosing it in a shimmering cocoon. Immediately, the fire began to shrink until it was gone. The dragon’s head whipped around to Cyn and Lilly almost laughed at the comical expression on its face. She was sure that the beast would have yelled, “And who the hell are you?” if it had the ability to speak. The draheim landed and the ground shook under its great weight. The elves had spanned out and were re-notching their bows. But, before they could loose the arrows, the dragon turned abruptly, using his long powerful tail to knock them off their feet.
Lilly covered her mouth as she gasped. “Ouch, that has got to hurt.”
Cypher avoided the tail and finally fired an arrow. Lilly held her breath as she watched the arrow sore up, up and hit the dragon, only to fall uselessly to the ground.
Cypher looked at the arrow he had shot, that now lay on the ground. Before he had time to digest this information, he heard Lilly’s voice as she yelled, “Incoming!” He turned just in time to see the destructive tail headed his way. He lunged upward with his powerful legs and tucked into a roll as he cleared the tail and landed on the ground, rolling up as the motion carried him. He ran over to where Thalion stood aiming his bow at the neck of the draheim.
“I shot him and the arrow bounced off,” Cypher told the elf.
“You have to aim for its neck. It’s the only place where the protective scales can be penetrated.”
Cypher growled. “You didn’t think to tell me that before we were dodging his fire and tail?”
Thalion shrugged. “You’re a warlock; you should know these things.” He let the arrow loose and it flew with exact precision to the weakest scales of the neck. The arrow looked so small and insignificant when it pierced the tough skin, but the shudder that ran through the beast revealed the power behind the weapon. It roared in anger, stomping its feet, causing the elves to dodge left and right. Cyn narrowly missed being squished like a bug as she rolled under the dragon. The arrows began to fly in rapid succession as they took advantage of the distraction caused by Thalion’s shot. Fire flew from the beast’s great mouth and its body swayed with every arrow that pierced its neck. Cyn managed to run out from under its belly and began sending out more light that was magical to put out the flames before they could spread into the surrounding forest.
As more arrows penetrated the draheim’s neck, it began to stumble, roaring, and thrashing wildly. Blood began to spurt from the wounds, showering down upon warlock, elf, and Fae alike. Lilly watched the beast weaken and part of her ached at the thought of the life leaving another living being. She unconsciously stepped out of the cover of the forest, wishing there was some way that they could spare the dragon, but knew it wasn’t possible. The draheim didn’t belong in this world, and, according to Cyn, it had been twisted into something evil. Evil could not be spared. It would spread like the fire that spewed from the jaws of the animal and burn down everything in its path. She hadn’t realized how far she had ventured from the trees until suddenly, a pair of glowing snake-like eyes had zeroed in on her. Lilly stopped in her tracks as the breath in her lungs became difficult to expel. She watched helplessly as, in an obvious last ditch effort, the huge draheim lunged for her, expelling flames from its mouth. Lilly’s blood was pounding in her head, muffling her hearing. She heard, no felt, the beast’s roar cascade over her. It fell before flames could engulf her and its jaws could snap onto her body. The monster hit the ground with a heavy blow, shaking the earth. The draheim let loose one more ear piercing roar, which joined with the wicked flames, before it came to rumbling halt a few feet in front of Lilly. Lilly’s eyes widened as she watched the flames rolling towards her. In her mind, she was yelling at herself to move her damn feet, but she just stood there. She closed her eyes as she felt the heat of the flames on her face, her hair blowing back from the force. She was sure that she would be fried to a crisp at any moment. All she could think was that she hoped that Jacque was all right, and that she would live a long, happy life. She waited, frozen in place.