Warrior of the Damned

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11

"I'm sorry, I think I misheard you. Maybe you didn't think it LOUD enough? Did you say train?"

He snorted at my attitude.

You have no idea what you're up against. If you're insistent on taking the fight to werewolves, first you need to know how to fight.

Point taken. "Fine. What's first?" I needed to get this "training" done quickly. The faster I mowed through it, the faster we could get back to the Castle. I was anxious now.

I turn to Damned. Not be afraid.

I rolled my eyes. Choppy sentences again. It's like he gave me hope his speech was improving, then suddenly dashed that hope with his next thought. I sighed, and motioned for him to get on with it.

He turned his back and trotted a couple yards away from me.

Not afraid, promise?

He was present when I first saw these creatures, right? I knew what to expect. Besides, knowing he wasnt going to rip my throat out made it a less terrifying thought.

"Yes. Just dont eat me."

He yawned, anxiously and shook his whole body as if he had just emerged from a bath. And he shook. And shook. He didnt stop. As he continued this strange display, his shape started to transform. It was hard to tell exactly what was happening due to his body movements blurring the process but I watched closely anyway.

He started growing bigger. Larger. Just his body at first but soon his back legs popped and cracked. They extended, getting longer and beefier. And just when I thought they would never stop, a quick but loud snap brought them into place, making them more proportional to his huge body. His front legs came next, growing longer and more powerful. His paws elongated into fearsome claws, meant for slashing and tearing. They must have been as big as my torso!

His head was the next in line, it exploded into something equivalent to the size of a cart. Minus the horse drawing it. His snout stretching to accommodate such a huge skull. His fangs slowly lengthing under his curled lip. I guesstimated they were as long as my forearm. He stopped shaking now and stood on his hind legs as he no longer needed the stability of all four.

I gasped and fell on my back end, scurrying in reverse like a crab. He was colossal! He must have been twice the size of what I had seen come through those castle windows! As he stood before me, quite menacing, breathing hard as if he had been running for days, I felt the blood drain from my face. My eyes were wide with something mixed between fear and amazement. My jaw extended in a dubious sense of stupidity.

Scared now.

This wasnt a question. It was confirmation, mocking me for my nonchalance earlier. I puffed my chest, trying to subdue my terror.

"No," I lied, "You're just... bigger. Why are you so much bigger than the others?" I whined.

Warrior bigger.

...Makes sense.

I scrambled to my feet and approached him, cautiously. His fur was still black like the starless sky. I reached out to touch it, expecting it to be a different texture but it still felt like Marek's hair. I backed up a bit, to look at his face without craining my neck too painfully. His teeth were hard to ignore and I fought relentlessly to erase the image of them stained with my blood. But his eyes... they were still icey blue. Still Marek.

Now, we fight.

I assumed that "we" meant me and him. Looking at him now, I wasnt so certain I wanted to go through with this.

"Go easy on me," I pouted.

He laughed. Again. Splendid.

Before I knew what was happening, he jumped up and over me, performing a somersault in mid air. I spun around, frowned and put one hand on my hip, "Now you're just showing off!"

He gave no response and instead snatched me up with his big claw, talons the length of my legs, brought my face to his and let out the most viscious, blood curdling roar I had ever heard. His breath like a strong gust of wind, blew my hair backwards. I had to close my eyes to avoid the saliva that came with it. But mainly, I wanted to avoid looking into that mouth... with those teeth.

He then did something I did not expect. He flung me! I landed hard on my back in a bush about a dozen meters away. "What the hell, Marek!" I demanded as I stood up, brushing leaves and twigs off me. I bent forward, backward and side to side to stretch my back. He leapt from the spot he tossed me from and landed beside me. The ground shook under my feet.

Apologize. Show you strength. Not full strength. Not hurt you.

I smirked, "Well good boy!" And patted his paw.

You're not taking this seriously, Adaleene. I might be bigger and stronger than the rest of the pack, but they are bigger and stronger than you. What would you do to injury me? Slow me down? Stop me? You cant. You are small and weak. You cannot defeat me!

I looked at him now, towering over me. Anger rising inside me. "I'm not WEAK!" I growled, stormed right up to him and punched him hard, right in the family jewels. He instantly fell to the ground, whining and withering in agony.

I dropped to my knees in front of him. "Oh my God, Marek! I am so very sorry! I dont know what came over me. Are you alright?" I screamed, pained that I had taken my rage out on him. I never wanted to see him hurt.

He was slow to get up, but when he did, it was on all fours and he folded, like paper, back into a canine.

Good tactic. Maybe enough for today?

I nodded in agreement.

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