The sound of a branch snapping just outside had me awake and alert In seconds. As my heart rate sped up, threatening to beat out of my chest.
All other sounds had stopped, there was no more chirping of insects. Or callings of small animals, only the night's breeze conjured sound from the swaying leaves.
I peeked out from my dwelling, to see if there was anyone or anything outside, but even with the moons high above, illuminating the forest, I could hardly see anything.
I waited for a few moments to see if anything would come out or make some kind of noise. Once I was sure I was safe I crawled out of the cramped den. My leg and hand both throbbed in pain and my throat felt dry.
Looking out into the forest I could see light reflecting off something. Getting closer I could see it was a small ditch with water pooled in it, and the moons light reflecting off the surface of it.
Kneeling down I filled my flask with the water before sealing it shut, next I removed the cloth from my hand carefully. Once it was off I soaked both my hands in the water and sighed, washing the dry blood off of my arm. Once I was done i carefully rinsed the cloth in the water and wrapped it back onto my wound.
Looking back at the water I could partially see my own reflection. My long white hair was braided off to the side with strands sticking out all over.
Varin didn't do such a great job at braiding hair, it was very loose and falling apart. Reaching for my braid to untie it I noticed something in the water, or better yet, in the reflection of the water...i could see a figure standing behind me.
Horror washed over me and my stomach sank as I reacted a second too late.
I spun around as the man grabbed me by my hair and shoved me to the ground.
I screamed and kicked flailing my arms out to try and push him off.
A sickening laugh came from the man as he grabbed me by the neck and started to choke me. My eyes shot open as I tried to put his hands from my neck.
"Haha! It's always fun when they struggle... You new-fallen are always so easy to track down, you dont cover your tracks or try to hide your scents at all! It's like your asking to be hunted!"
Looking at the man I could see his eyes looked crazed and many stars covered his body, and burn marks sortched his entire left side. As he smiled down at me i could see his teeth were pointed as if he had grinded them down each into individual fangs. Was he even human?!
I clawed desperately at the hand around my throat as my airway was completely blocked. I can't breathe! I struggled and tried twisting my body to get him off but he positioned himself to sit on top of me so i couldn't move.
No no no! Choking out words I begged him to stop but this only seemed to excite him more as he licked his lips and pulled out a knife, pressing it against my cheek.
"Oh I'm going to enjoy this...i haven't eaten a proper meal for six days now...all because of that bastard... But I finally managed to lose him two days ago...i can't spend to much time here so dont worry this will be quick...mmm...your so fresh too...a bit skinny for my taste but oh i can deal with it...its a shame most of you will go to waste though..."
I continued to claw at the man's hand trying to get a grasp of air as he rambled on, I can't die like this! This man was insain!
"Hmmm...maybe ill cut you up and hide the rest for later...ahh my mouth is watering at just the thought of tasting your flesh...Heheh....so what should i eat first...im sure your heart and liver will be the best!"
My eyes widened in horror. He planned on eating me?!
He only seemed to laugh at my fear as my vision started to blur.
"I'm going to enjoy cutting you up!"
The rustling leaves had him snapping his attention to the forest just as a mass jumped out of the trees, tackling the psychopath off of me.
I gasped for much-needed air and rolled onto my side coughing, once he was off of me.
Black spots ran across my vision as I looked up to see the man fighting with some kind of beast....or man...
Hissing and snarling came from the two as they thrashed and clawed at each other.
The glint of a blade caught my eye in the moonlight just before it slashed through the man's neck and something warm splattered everywhere, even onto my face. Sitting back i touched some of the warm liquid that had across my face. And looking down at my uninjured hand, all I could see was red... Blood.
The crazed man started to choke and I could faintly make out the stranger standing above him with glowing eyes. He was growling down at the crazed lunatic as he choked on his own blood.
I watched in horror as something moving in the dark came into view, it was long and slender, and at the end of it was a sharp serraded blade covered in blood. Looking more closely I could see it was attached to the stranger, like a tail...
The stranger grabbed him by his head and dragged him a few feet away over to a rock.
Covering my ears and squeezing my eyes shut. I faced away, not wanting to watch the gruesome end of the man. A thud was all i heard and i could feel the bile rising in my throat. Covering my mouth i didnt dare to look back. My eyes came across the blade the man had been wielding moments ago, laying in the dirt just across from me.
Grabbing it I could see the blade was beautiful and professionally made. With strange markings engraved into it, it was a weapon i could use...
A growl had me looking back and I could see the man's corpse lying lifeless before the stranger who had just saved me. My eyes trailed upwards as I looked at the person before me...their fingers we're merely claws, and atop of his head were what looked like small pointed horn stubs.
I didn't even notice how badly I was shaking until now. The bladed tail flicked around as if it had a mind of his own, as he kneeled down and started searching the dead body for something.
Crawling backward I wanted to put as much distance between me and the stranger before he noticed me.
Sitting up I leaned against a tree for support as I got to my feet. Clutching the knife in my good hand.
Looking around I tried to find the direction I came from. If I could just get back to the den then I could hide...
Taking a step forward a twig snapped under my food making me freeze and causing the stranger to stop what he was doing. I looked back to see him pause for a moment before standing upright, to his full 7-foot height.
He turned to face me showing his fangs and clear agitation as his eyes narrowed. I stared at him in complete horror as he took a threatening step towards me while flexing his claws. This wasn't a person it was a monster.
Before he could attack, i ran. Ignoring the burning pain i ran as fast as i could, trying not to misstep.
An angry snarl came from my pursuer as he gave chase, and I could easily tell he was having no trouble, getting across the terrain, and was quickly gaining.
The rock formation came into view as well as my shelter and i quickly slipped inside of the small den, narrowly avoiding the claws that tried to grab me.
An angry hiss came from the monster as he tried figuring out another way to get inside. He was too big to fit and I was too far back into the den for him to grab.
He stalked back and forth, only his tail and legs were within my line of sight. He continued to pace waiting and trying to find a way to get me out but i was huddled up in the back panting trying to catch my breath. If he tried to reach in i would slice his arm open with the knife.
Maybe If i stay inside long enough he would have to eventually go away....right?
After what seemed like an hour of waiting, He stopped and angrily roared just outside of the den.
Covering my ears I squeezed my eyes shut and whimpered as fear continued to course through my body. I was shaking like a leaf and could help the tears that streaked down my face.
I just want to go home...
This place really is hell...