Gender: Male Age: 53 Location: Las Vegas, Nv
The three elves were constantly around and Aveline thought it was funny. They wanted to know how I found the elf stones and where the others were. Rumors were coming in about a dragon in the far west. It was a small party of dwarves that brought the real story. I had managed to get two very large dragon kites like the one I had used in Delf but twice as large.
I was sipping cider outside with Aveline while telling her how to control the kite. The dwarves were at another table beside us while they tried to talk the ranger commander into sending all the rangers to fight the wyvern that was sieging their mountain home to the far east and south.
It was beyond the elven forest of Green Heart and the elves would not send their armies to help. I finally looked at the commander, “want us to go look it over?”
The dwarves went quiet as he looked at me and then Aveline and smiled, “are you bored?”
Aveline snorted and I grinned, “since it is spring I wouldn’t mind a long trip.”
He chuckled, “okay but don’t do anything dumb.”
Aveline stood as she laughed, “like pushing poor trolls into frozen rivers? Or killing giants that are reducing the number of orcs?”
Other rangers sitting around us laughed as I stood, “well the troll could have walked out.”
She laughed again as she headed into the tavern and up to our room, “not while breathing water.”
I grinned as I followed her, “you are jealous because you didn’t push him first.”
I had an idea on how to travel quickly and we packed light before carrying the two long bundles and our packs to the Keep and up into the tall tower. We put the two kites together and I shouldered my bow after binding the arrows in my quiver. I secured the pack to the upper center brace and looked at Aveline after fitting the body harness.
I stood holding the lower cross brace of the kite and angled it over the side of the tower. The wind caught it and I lifted slowly and moved my feet back and onto the rear brace. I lifted higher as Aveline watched and then grinned as she lifted her kite and moved to the edge. A minute and she was slowly rising beside me and I turned to move away and go higher.
It was strange because unlike the last time I could see the shimmer in the air where the warmer air pushed up. I finally turned and began soaring and headed south out of the pass and began to go higher. It was still early as Aveline followed and we turned to go east along the mountains.
A couple of hours later I descended and landed on a high ridge so we could stretch and take a break. In the two hours we had come more than a day on foot. We landed before it got dark and killed a couple of rabbits for dinner. I smiled as I laid back that night, the thrill of soaring like a bird in my head when I fell asleep.
A week later I saw the ruins of Glimmer and turned to head for it. I landed on one of the high walls and settled the kite to the wall before Aveline landed. I explored the ruins with her and told her about the stairs below in the troll cave. We camped in the ruins that night and left in the morning.
It was a couple of days before we reached the elven highlands and I was worried we might have to land and walk across. I didn’t have to worry, there was a wind that we rode all the way across in one long day. After we were across we had to turn south towards the mid plains. We had to land twice on the way across and barely managed to take off each time.
Once we reached the Quiet mountains we continued east. Two weeks and we saw Finagore, the dwarven city was beneath the mountain. I looked around before slowly going lower and around to land on a lower ridge. I moved away from the kite as Aveline followed me down. We walked to the crest and looked over and I used a distance glass.
I handed it to Aveline, “look at the plains out in front of the gates.”
She hissed when she saw the huge wyvern eating what looked like a horse. I looked around, “we will leave the kites here and go on foot.”
We collapsed the kites and hid them before shouldering our packs and starting down. The few large animals that we saw, like deer were extremely skittish and frightened easily. We stayed in thicker trees and brush as we went around the plains and started up a ridge onto Finagore. It was almost dark when we stepped off the narrow cliff ledge and slipped onto a balcony.
A dozen dwarf warriors spun when I led Aveline through the open door. I grinned, “the wyvern is still feeding.”
One dwarf growled as it stomped towards us, “who be you!”
I smiled as I waited for him, “Blade and my partner is Aveline. We are from the rangers.”
He stopped and glared up at me, “did you bring more?”
I shook my head, “we came to see if there was anything we could do.”
He snorted and spun, “useless then.”
I laughed as I strode after him, “we have a few ideas dwarf. Now is there any chance of a hot meal and a bath?”
They grumbled but led us out and down to a huge hall where hundreds of dwarves were eating. After that we had a nice long soak before meeting the tall dwarf king. Each clan had their own king and this one was both grumpy and rude. We were up early and left the way we had come in.
The wyvern was on one of the ridges digging at an opening. We managed to sneak up to within fifty paces and watched it carefully. I finally touched Aveline and we silently slipped back and away. Once we were a distance from the huge beast I stopped and looked back, “an arrow would never penetrate. Even if it did it would never go in far enough the kill.”
She nodded, “it would be to big to trap.”
I grinned, “we could blind it with arrows.”
She snorted, “it would still take weeks to die and wyverns tend to regenerate.”
I frowned and looked around, “we could keep putting arrows into its eyes.”
Aveline shook her head, “it is the best plan we have.”
The wyvern had abandoned its digging and flown back down to the edge of the plains. Two hours later we were watching it from bushes after hiding our packs. We had made a plan but like all plans things go wrong. The wyvern was ripping another animal apart and it wasn’t because it was hungry.
It stopped and lifted its head and I pulled the string back on my bow. The snap of the string wasn’t loud but its gaze went straight to me. The arrow hit and vanished into the eye and it roared and twisted before suddenly charging us much faster than we expected it to. Aveline released her arrow but it shattered when the wyvern closed the eyelid.
We spun and began running into the forest dodging trees to make the huge beast turn and slow. It worked better than we expected when it slammed into a tree and tumbled. We slipped away while it ripped everything up around it and continued to roar and bellow. Several minutes later it was in the air above us and searching.
When it screamed and dove we spilt up as it hit the trees and crashed through. I caught up to Aveline a few minutes later as the wyvern searched behind us. When we heard it in the air again we used a couple of large trees to keep it from seeing us. Several hours later it returned to the plains and we sat to relax and catch our breath.
We finally stood and began stalking back towards the plains and the wyvern. We watched from hiding and could tell it was still watching and waiting. It was starting to get dark when it surged towards us. I aimed towards its remaining eye with Aveline and fired. She fired a moment later and I watched as I started to turn.
The wyvern closed its eyelid and my arrow hit it and bounced away and it opened its eye. Aveline’s arrow vanished into it remaining eye and it roared and twisted. It crashed to the ground and rolled as it bellowed and thrashed around. We turned and started moving towards where we had left our packs.
We were shouldering the packs when we heard the beast go quiet. I looked at Aveline before looking in the direction we had come from. We could hear the wyvern moving through the forest, it was hitting trees and crashing through brush. I followed the sound as the last light began to fade.
I straightened, “it is following our scent.”
Aveline nodded and I turned and started trotting. She followed as I led her into the forest, each time we stopped and listened we could still hear it behind us. I tried sprinkling demon powder over our trail but the wyvern wasn’t even bothered. We kept moving all night and as the sun came up we were climbing a shoulder of Finagore.
We had crisscrossed back and forth as we climbed and stood looking down from a small cliff. Our back trail was below and we could hear the wyvern coming. It came out of some brush and stopped to twist its head to listen and that was when I saw it in the morning light. At the base of the skull where it met the neck there was a fresh cut.
It looked as if it had thrashed around and manage to rip or cut itself. I held my bow out to Aveline as I shrugged out of my pack. She hissed but took the bow while I set my pack down and pulled Reaper. The back of the wyvern would pass a dozen paces below us so I had to time my leap. It started moving again with it nose close to the ground as it followed our scent.
As it went past I jumped and whispered, “Reaper don’t fail me.”
I spread out and shoved the sword into the cut just before I hit. It was a jarring impact but the sword slammed through the hide and then the spine. I rolled right and yanked the blade that way to sever the spinel cord as the huge wyvern collapsed. I rolled the other way as I yanked the sword up and tried to pull it out.
I rolled off and fell but the sword was free and still in my hand. I twisted and landed on my feet but went over backwards. I rolled before I came to my feet facing the wyvern as it spasmed and thrashed around. I waited and then looked up the cliff to see Aveline staring at me. I grinned and yelled, “bring my pack!”
It took her several minutes to climb back down and the wyvern was still twitching. I took my pack and dug into it before pulling out a slim saw blade, “this may take awhile.”
She shook her head, “you are crazy.”
I moved to the wyvern’s neck, “I saw the cut in the skin at the back of its head. It was a chance and I didn’t have a lot of time to explain.”
She took her pack off, “and what are you doing now?”
I started using the saw and slowly cutting back and forth, “I hope it is dead but if I cut the head off I know it will be.”
She laughed as she took the saw and pushed me towards a large rock, “sit. You are shaking to much to cut in a straight line.”
It took three hours to cut the head off and we were both sore, bruised and covered in blood and gore. Several hours later we walked up to the massive main door into Finagore. I pounded on it for a half hour before a small side door was opened. A dwarf peeked out with a lantern, “go away.”
I shook my head, “the wyvern is dead. Open the damn doors.”
He looked at us for several moments, “dead?”
I sighed, “we need several baths and a night’s rest.”
He disappeared and a minute later the huge doors began to open. It took six baths to remove the smell of wyvern blood. We left the next morning with our packs full of gifts. When we reached the place we had hidden the kites Aveline sighed and stretched, “this part I like.”
I grinned as we began putting the kites together for the trip back.
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