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Decoy

Title: Decoy

Genre: Suspense?  Horror

Rating: PG-13

Thoughts: I’m reading a zombie book right now and I came up with this character while running reports at work and this is the product of my daydreaming.  I have no desire to write anything of any substantial length in this genre, but my short exercise is fun!

——-

Sometimes staying painfully still will save you.  Sometimes it’s better to just suck it up and run.  The most terrifying moment after the one where you realize you’re surrounded by putrid zombies – is when you make the choice: hole up and be quiet, or make a break for it?

“Remember when you asked me why I carry machetes?”  The suit and his entourage, as well as their detail of professional security guards looked ready pee their pants.  The suit’s son who had sat next to me because he’d never seen anything bigger than a steak knife looked at me with eyes as wide as teacups and nodded.  “Well, I carry them for times like this.”

I looked around the small group of survivors from our convoy.  Lot of good former-military security did us; they were good at anticipating human opposition.  When the enemy stops thinking and just attacks, well, that doesn’t fit with the way a military man thinks.  The head of security was dead; one of the first ones to be honest, and there wasn’t anyone left now who seemed to want to take command.  Well I had bad news for them; neither did I.

“The herd is gathering, the smaller ones,” I knelt and enlarged the image on my pocket display and then sat it on the ground so it could project a holographic image.  “They’re all coming together on the north side of this building.  Meat heads,” my fond term for the security detail, “you take everyone out the other side and run.”

“They’re just going to follow us,” a nameless, faceless female said.  The job was so last minute I didn’t even know who it was I was supposed to be protecting; just someone in a suit that paid.

“No, they’re going to follow me.”

“What are you going to do?”  One of the meat heads who had ogled me earlier gazed at me with obvious skepticism.

“My job.”  I bit back and glared.  “Any questions?”

Silence.

“Good.  Collect yourselves and start moving.”

There were a few complaints, but no one was about to question the one person in the group who wasn’t crying or shaking in fear.  There are some perks at being too young to remember a time before zombies.  If it weren’t for the zombies, I might still be in music school.  My parents died after I finished high school in the same way everyone does; they were eaten.  End of their story.  I took what money I could and went to school, studying ballet and music.  Thanks to bad toes my ballet days were over quickly, and I took on low level security details to pay for music school.

Eventually the money ran out and the jobs got better because I got a reputation for staying alive.  That makes you popular in my line of business.

Moments like these, sitting alone in an abandoned, boarded up building, I wonder what it would have been like to finish school and have a safe, secure life dancing.  I was decent but never good, but I’d always wanted to be a dancer.

In some ways I still do dance; just not in a way anyone’s going to pay to watch.

Straightening, I unsnapped the strap over the machetes.  They were back ups.  I double checked the guns, looking to count the rounds I had left.  You always wanted to save your last bullet for yourself when it came down to it.  Lastly, I took my old, sturdy MP3 player and plugged it into the mic feed.  I wear tiny, pin sized cameras and two-way-mics for pop news reporters who want the up close and personal affect without going anywhere near something that might eat them.  They weren’t going to get any audio from me today.

The sound of the main body of the herd was probably thirty, forty feet away from my position.  I’d found a good spot on the second floor where someone had rigged a drawbridge system on one of the windows for quick access in and out.  Fine by me since I want out and in case the suits and meat heads freeze up they won’t get caught in a death trap.

Zombie’s haven’t figured out to look up for us.  While they retain most normal functions, the ability to look up and down has either become a forgotten motor skill, or rendered impossible.  I’m sure some enterprising young scientist knows; I just know that if you can manage to get far enough off of the ground they’ll eventually lose your position and leave you alone.  Usually.  There are exceptions but right now they’re unimportant.

If I were trying to be quiet this would have been a terrible moment for me.  But since I wanted to be as loud as possible, jumping down onto an old, metal dumpster that boomed like thunder worked really well.  The whole herd collectively stopped moaning and turned.

“Hey, hungry?”  I yelled and pressed play on the MP3 player, the sounds of Carry On Wayward Son blasting the midrange out of the tiny speakers.

That was all it took.  The decaying bodies lurched towards me, arms swinging slackly at their sides, mouths agape with bodily fluids caked or congealed on them.  I jogged, letting the herd get their forward momentum going and zigzagging down the mostly cleared street.  If this wasn’t Dallas, Texas I wouldn’t dream of using this plan, but territorial, castle-law supporting Texans mean that the streets were cleared early on.

Jumping up on a brick flower bed I turned around and shot the leaders of the herd, taking out the liveliest early on.  This was like marathon training on steroids.  To date, this was the fourth time I’d played decoy while my suits got out the back way and each time I’d ran and picked off zombies until I had to find shelter or get to a safe zone.  I could only hope that this time worked out as well as the others.

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Pele’s Story, Part III

Title: Pele’s Story

Chapter: Part III

Genre: Paranormal

Rating: PG-13

——-

“What’s going on out here?”  The doors ripped open and Dius stood in the space staring at the scene.

Pele stood between her desk and her brother.  Don lay on his back, sprawled with his head lolling to one side; eyes closed and mouth open slightly.  His breathing was loud, like a wind vane.

“Is it too difficult to take care of him?”  Dius slammed one of the doors shut behind him and walked over to glower down at his son.  “Can you not handle him, Pele?  Is that too much for you?”

Peles lips became two hard lines as she focused on calm breathing.

“ Well, what are you standing around for? Can you not do this simple job?”

“I’ll take care of it, sir.”  Her tanned cheeks grew red; Pele looked down, feeling anger and shame.  No, she hadn’t taken care of things.  Don had made a mess and it was all her fault.

“Sometimes I wonder why you’re still around.”

Dius turned on and stalked back to his lair.  “Clean up this mess or it’s you that’ll be cleaned out of here.”

——-

The darkness hugged her as the wind whipped her like her father’s words.

The hover bike navigated the streets with an almost sentient eagerness.  Pele idly wondered if she had endowed the contraption with magic at some point but dismissed it.  Granting life was not an interest of hers.

Pele was glad for the time alone on the bike.  It gave her a quiet time alone with her thoughts where she could shed the proper creature she had to be for Daddy, and what she became nocturnally.  By the time she pulled up into a crummy looking garage, hoses and tools hanging from the wall, a large sedan parked in the bay next to her.  Pele lifted her helmet off and shook out her long black hair as the garage door slowly descended, shutting out the street traffic.

“Hana mana Akau.”  Pele turned and nodded at the greasy woman standing by the doors.

“Hana mana Pele.”  Akau nodded and turned towards a yellow painted door, preceding the younger woman.

Sitting on the floor in a small room buried under the obvious structure, were three women, all with islander features like Pele; hair so dark it was more than black, brown eyes that smoldered, and skin that glistened from the sun.  The sat knee to knee around a small bowl of incense, only a few candles providing light to see by.

These were Pele’s mentors; her teachers.  They had taken her on because they shared a nationality, but they kept her because she had become one of them.

“You killed the wolf?”

Pele nodded to Akau and accepted the cup of pungent juice she was handed.

“Did you strip the magic from him when you were finished?”

“Yes, Kahoku.”  Pele held the cup just under her chin.  “I took back all that was mine.  The magic and the chains.  I left nothing.”

Kahoku nodded and prodded a bowl with her finger.  “Death will bring the Alaka’i.  He will want to know why someone was killed.  You did not do it cleanly, did you Pele?”

She didn’t respond at once, but looked between Akau and Kahoku before shaking her head.  “No, no I did not.”  Neither showed signs of approval or disapproval and Pele was uncertain of their opinion about what she had done.  With disgust, Pele continued talking, “Lord High-and-Mighty has other things to deal with.”  She grimaced and sipped the juice.  “Other holdings are having problems.  They know that here the rules are more relaxed.  He will have to deal with an influx of new people.  Where to put bodies when we already occupy all of the space within these walls?”

“I heard that the Council wanted to request the expulsion of all demons.”  Akau swirled her own cup, dark eyes staring at a flickering flame.

“The vampires want the demons gone.”  Kahoku shrugged and picked up the bowl, fishing out bits of dried fruit and slipping them between her lips.

“The vampires want demons, animal-shifters, and all creations gone except for humans.  It’s rumored Springtown was destroyed because the vampires drove out everyone but the humans and those they kept like dumb sheep for the slaughter.”

Kahoku and Akau looked at Pele with skepticism that thinly veiled fear.  Fear.  The reason so many of them did anything at all.

“How do you know this?”  Leave it to Akau to be direct.

“Because a whole crew arrived two months ago, asking my dad for permission to stay in Lost River.  He told them to take the western northern slums around that werewolf pack.  They told us what happened in Springtown.”

“So some new toughs move in. So what?”

“Kahoku,” Akau put a hand on the older woman’s knee, “think about the others on that side of town.  Have we heard anything from them?”

Kahoku’s brow furrowed and she shook her head.  “They are a silly group.  They are not smart, either.  They get themselves into too much trouble; it doesn’t bother me if we haven’t heard from them.”

“You mean Jessica and the others, you haven’t heard from them recently?”  Pele sat her cup down sharply and looked at the old woman with large, serious eyes.

“No, but it’s not uncommon for them to get lost in their drink and their men and.”

“I’m going to go check on them.”  Pele stood up, kicking over her empty cup as she stood.

“Pele, wait.”  Akau held out her hand, the gesture enough to still the younger woman.  “You should not go near that pack.  What if they smell you?  That alphas corpse will smell like you.”

“I don’t plan on playing with the dogs.”

The two women did not try to stop Pele when she left the garage, the night yawning over her as she weaved through the evening traffic to the other side of town.

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Pele’s Story: Part II

Title: Pele’s Story

Chapter: Part I

Genre: Paranormal

Rating: PG-13

——-

The wolf would have snarled; the hatred in its eyes made that clear.  Pele walked a slow circle around the wolf, tapping her chin thoughtfully.  “You need to go away, but I thought that since you needed to be off’d anyways, I’d have some fun.  I think we’re going to have a lot of fun together.”  She grinned like a little girl with a new doll, and were this another setting, a pretty garden or a home – that grin would have been commonplace.  But in this dank cell, it was ominous.

The silver chains rattled as she picked them up by one end and let the rest of the length of chain trail behind her like the train on a dress.  She searched the floor until she found what she was looking for: rings.  Some werewolves were so violent during their transformation that they seriously hurt themselves, so to protect both the wolf and the rest of creation stakes were driven down ten feet and imbedded in the natural foundation of rock under the city.  Metal reinforcements made a network of crossbeams under the cell, and concrete and the paving stones finished it off.

Pele attached each of the four chains to their rings and only then did she turn back to the silent, still werewolf.  “Oh I’m sorry,” she purred, “are you having difficulty breathing?  I’m sure that must be excruciatingly hard on you.  I thought you might have passed out my now.  Well, we’ll just put these on.”  She knelt close enough to the wolf that its fur brushed against her tanned skin and ticked her nose.  The cuffs closed with a metallic clink on each limb.  “There we go.  Now, just to make sure you don’t try anything nasty, I’m going to wench you into place.”

Sauntering out of the cells she had to cross to what appeared to be just another shadowed corner.  The chains were pulled down into the ground, taking up the slack until they were stretched taunt against Pele’s spell.  “I’m going to let you go now.  Be a good boy, and remember to be quiet.”

It didn’t take words to dissipate a spell, but Pele liked to be dramatic.  She liked this feeling of power and hording it over this creature – just like her twisted father held the darker side of the city in the palm of his hand.

Ku’oko’a.”

The werewolf’s body uncoiled into spasms and jerks.  Its jaws worked in a silent howl, the lips pulled back into an evil snarl.  The chains attached to its forequarters were taunt, but the two attached to its hindquarters lay in two coils of silvery chain.  The wolf sprang forward toward the open cell doors, the only sound being the clanking of silver chain and its nails on stone.

“No, no, no, that’s not playing nice.”  Pele cranked the wench, hauling in the chain so quickly the wolf’s legs were pulled out from under it and its bulk landed on the stones with a sickening thud.  It’s whole form writhed and spasmed as the silver counteracted the shift and slowly human hands and feet began to form where before paw and claw had been.

She stepped forward, a hungry glint in her eyes as she grasped the bars and watched as the silver slowly and painfully transformed the wolf into a man.  It might have been creepy, for a thing that large to writhe so powerfully and yet never utter a sound.  Slowly, like a cat stalking a mouse, Pele walked the half circle back to the cell doors, her eyes enraptured by her prey.  The now man lay spread eagle on his stomach, chin mashed painfully into the stones so he could look through brown shaggy hair at her; even in a human form he still had a feral look to his eyes.

“We’re going to have fun together, lupo.”

——-

“Pele!”

Pele’s head snapped up from the monitor, “Yes sir?”

“Get in here.”

Her heels clicked on the tiled floor as she took the short, quick steps the tight pencil skirt necessitated.  Sliding through the doors that stood slightly ajar the young woman looked expectantly at a large brooding man sitting behind a spartan desk, dragging images around on a display with his fingers.

A thrill went through Pele as she realized Daddy was admiring her handiwork.  The gashes made by silver flayed flesh open, exposing sinews and bones.  Her plaything had been wonderfully cooperative.

“Don’t look if you’re going to be sick,” her brother, Abaddon, sneered from his comfortable place in a leather arm chair, a glass of amber liquor in his hands.

Pele returned his harsh gaze with a smooth one of her own.  It was pathetic how Don started drinking so early; he didn’t do anything.  Privately Pele thought, Donny doesn’t deserve Daddy’s attention like I do.

“Pele, pay attention!”

She snapped back to her father, Hemigidius – though most called him Dius for simplicities sake.  It wasn’t his real name, not even Pele or her brother Don knew what their father had once been called, though they knew that when he came to Comloth he took on the name to name himself a god.  He had even named his children after gods; Abaddon was the name of a destroyer god, Pele the goddess of destruction and creation from their native country.

“Yes sir.”

“I need for you to get law enforcement on the phone – preferably one of those vampires.  Then I need you to call the Alpha of that –“

“The northern pack,” Don offered.

Dius glared at his son, the gaze alone enough to cause the young man to gulp his liquor and pretend to be interested in his fingernails.

“Sir, if I may?”  There were three other men in the office, one stepped forward and spread his hands politely out to Dius in a gesture of subservient difference.

“Yes?”

“Allow me to contact the pack.  I can extend our condolences for the loss of an alpha male and offer a gift.  It could be beneficial to allow them to assume that this was our doing, but if all three packs put aside their differences and band together it could make things difficult for us.”

Dius nodded.  “Rotten time for this one to get himself sliced up,” he leaned back in his chair, the hinges squeaking as his bulk shifted back.  “Not that I’m sorry to see his hide gone – but he could have found a more convenient time to piss someone off.”

The man turned to Pele and smiled.  All the men who looked at Pele smiled; she was Dius’ daughter and though he might dismiss her for her gender, it was that very reason everyone else paid attention to her.  The snug dress hugged her curves and exposed just enough cleavage to be tempting; she filled just about every man’s naughty secretary dreams.  “Pele, could you arrange for a side of beef to be delivered to the pack?”

She jotted down a list of requests, things to placate the pack and people to call.  She painted a false smile on her face, the kind of vapid thing that deflected anyone suspecting her of being able to harm a fly.  Her worth to Daddy was that no one, not even Daddy, knew who took care of his problems.  But inside she was a swirling mess of emotion; she had done something wrong.  Killing the wolf wasn’t what Daddy wanted!  She had to figure out a way to fix it.  She knew in theory how to raise the dead, but hadn’t had the opportunity or need to test out her teachers instructions.

“If we can find out who did this,” Dius said out loud, pulling up a ghastly image of what had been done to the wolf’s feet, “hire him.”

All the voices in Pele’s mind stilled and behind a curtain of black hair she grinned.

“I’ll get those things for you right away,” she said quietly and left the office.

Pele sat down in her own chair, feeling a heady sense of accomplishment.  Daddy did want her.  Daddy needed her.  She could help Daddy.  Pele’s fingers flew over the keys as she quickly executed what the little man wanted to placate the wolves while she imagined telling her Kumu how successful last night was.  She would be happy for Pele but also reserved.  The witches, Kumu as Pele called them, were not fond of her father though they did bend to his will at times and occasionally he had need of their services.

That was why she had first decided to become Kumu herself.  After mother died and they were alone with Daddy, he called the Kumu and asked them to do something.  She would never forget that first time she saw the vein in his forehead pulse with fear, the way his eyes grew just a little bit bigger and the way his trousers twitched from fiddling with change in his pocket.  She knew at a young age the Kumu had power.  She hated seeing Daddy afraid.

At first Pele had wanted to kill the Kumu.  She tried, once, as a young woman to slit her Kumu’s throat but the woman showed her real power and Pele realized the best way to protect her father from the Kumu was to become one herself, and then he would never want for one again.  But he couldn’t know what she was.  He couldn’t know she was his black angel.

So she made his phone calls and arranged for the pitiful peace offerings to the mangy dogs who had lost one of their own with a smug smile on her lips.

“What are you smiling about?”

“Don,” she smiled a little larger.  Not even noon and he was drunk.  Disgusting.  “Is there something I can do for you?”

The door behind him closed with force, punctuating Pele’s suspicion that her brother had been expulsed against his will.  “You can suck my cock.”

She frowned, all pretenses of smiles and placating behavior gone.  “You’re drunk.”

“And you’re a genius.”  He took a few steps towards her desk, squinting at the open windows that let in the day’s sunshine with open arms.  “What are you doing, my worthless sister?”

“Working.  Unlike you.”  She tilted her chin up, annoyed that he was now her problem, interrupting her pleasant daydreams.  It would be easier for Daddy to like her better if Don weren’t in the way; it would be better if he would just disappear.  But Donny was family.

“Whose cock are you sucking these days?”  He crossed the rest of the distance between the door and her desk and shoved aside a stack of files so he could half-sit on the edge of the desk.

“That is none of your business,” she said sharply and gave him a warning look.

Ring. Ring.

Pele snatched up the phone, glad for the distraction, especially since it was from a normally helpful freelance demon.  Don continued to sit on the edge of her desk, breathing heavily and watching her until she hung up the phone.  She had decided to ignore him; he would get bored and go off to satisfy himself on some whore with a bit of blue ice and a bottle of whatever he was drinking this month and he would cease to be her problem until he needed Daddy to pay for something – and then she would have to take care of it.  But at least then it was more like taking out the trash than giving the cat a bath.

Don’s hand clamped around her throat and he rolled her chair back until it slammed against the wall.  With more strength and speed than Pele would have guessed he possessed he hauled her up until only the tips of her toes were on the floor, her back against a photograph hung in a frame.  Pele struggled for breath as the sound of scraping sounded close in her ears.  The glass over the picture was cracked and broken in a few places, shards of glass cutting her bare skin.

Pele couldn’t breathe to speak, to give the magic in her purpose; she was powerless to her brothers superior strength.  The skirt constricted her legs so much she couldn’t even kick him in the balls!  She had to hold onto his arm with both hands to even get the smallest breath in.  Don’s breath smelled of liquor and onions and he leered at her – her own brother.

His two days of stubble scraped against the sensitive flesh of her breast as he rubbed himself against her.  Pele’s stomach clenched, revolted.  She knew her brother was depraved, but to go after his sister?  In their father’s place of work?  And in public?  Despite her own panic, his hold on her was growing shaky, she could breathe even.

“Donny,” she gasped.  It took a great amount of willpower, but she steadied her voice, making herself appear at least a little calm.  It would never do to beg her brother. “Please put me down.”

Glass scraped painfully across her skin as his hold on her throat relaxed and she landed heavily on her feet.  What breath she recovered was instantly shoved out of her lungs as Don pushed up against her, his mouth lost in the sea of her hair searching for her neck.

With the use of her hands, Pele had the advantage she needed.  She shoved her unsteady brother back and grabbed an arm, flipping him onto the floor.  She grappled a paperweight on her desk and hit him with it; not hard enough to bleed, just enough to stun him.  “Maka hiamoe,” she hissed and released the merest amount of magic.  Don slumped on the floor, asleep.

Quickly Pele put her desk to rights, and knelt over her brother.  If she could clean things up and put him in another room, no one would know what kind of sad shape Dius’ son was in.

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Pele’s Story – Part I

Title: Pele’s Story

Chapter: Part I

Genre: Paranormal

Rating: PG-13

Note: I started this in first person. I really don’t like it. The next bit will be done in 3rd and this revised at a later date so I can do more

——-

Daddy had been pleased when the pharmaceuticals lawyer finally agreed to his terms of purchase.

Daddy had been happy when the snitch he’d been looking for was found shot up with enough hallucinogens he uninhibitedly told Daddy all of his secrets.

Daddy would be happy when the werewolf disappeared.

I lifted the helmet off and sat it on the handlebars of my latest toy; a brand new hover-bike.  The night air was cool and in this poor area the air was fragrant with exhaust fumes and week old garbage.  Werewolves were disgusting creatures; it only made sense that this one would be here.  I tapped at the talisman hanging from my throat; my latest creation.  It protected me from tooth and claw; handy when facing off with a werewolf at the height of the full moon.

My plan had worked perfectly.

Even now I could hear the howls of the stupid beast, trapped by necessity.

The muscles in my face tugged my lips into a grin as I thought about what fun I was about to have.  The bundle of ‘gifts’ from Brangaty’s Precious Trinkets slung over my shoulder, all that was left to do was go inside.  As an afterthought I turned back to the bike and lay my hand on the headlight.

Noho.”  A little flash of light and a speck of energy settled onto the bike; no one would be able to touch it.

Inside the cavernous building, one of the few made of ancient blocks of stone, it was clear it was no longer occupied.  This was good.  It meant I wouldn’t have to deal with anyone else; just my prey.

He was below ground, locked in a cell within a cell within a cell.  He wasn’t the first werewolf I had seen, but he had to be the biggest.  Dark eyes were bloodshot and ringed in a feral redness.  Though his coat of fur was a molted black and brown and showed scraggly in places, like he had mange or a skin condition, he was still a creature of power, of darkness, of night.

Like me.

I stopped at the outermost gate and looked in.  He was crazed.  There was no vestige of the half of man that lived inside of him, that kept his soul trapped within the beasts body, but he still looked at me for one almost lucid moment.

A predator recognizing another.

He began snapping the air and growling ominously and threw his bulk against the bars.  Curiously, I stood and watched; I was fascinated, not scared.  I took out the key from my pocket and fit it into the lock.  As the door clicked open the cell became deathly quiet.  That part of the beast that remembered being more was probably screaming at the wolf to run.  When he locked himself in this cell he would have been assured that he held the only key; a key that would be in the cell with the wolf under a fitted brick that wolf claws and teeth could not budge but human fingers could.  He had probably come to this shelter desperate, caught out too late by a series of unfortunate incidents that added up to disaster.

If a wolf, even one with such a good record as this one, were to kill any creature he would be put to death.  Just like a vampire or demon or human.  The no-death rule was probably what kept their society from falling in on its self; so many creatures were never meant to live alongside each other.

I pulled the first door closed behind me and flipped for the second key.

The wolf threw its self backwards and howled, head tossed back and pointed towards a grate in the ceiling where moonlight flowed down to bathe it’s horrid child in a pale glow.

Securing the second gate behind me I stood outside the last thing between myself and my prey.  Giddy to the point of laughter, I allowed myself a deep, throaty laugh.  It cut through the werewolf’s howl, silencing it.

“You think your kind is going to come and save you?”

It stared back at me, nose twitching.

“They gave you up to me.”  I sat my bundle down, the sound of metal clanking together sent a shiver through the wolf.

It bunched, as if to pounce, but stayed still.  Watching me.

“You want to see what I have?”

I pretended it spoke back to me, saying, ‘Yes, Miss Pele, I do want to see what it is you have.’

“Very well, I’ll show you.”

I flicked back the flap and spilled the silver chains out onto the stone floor.  The silver machete I grabbed and held out so that the wolf could see its’ own reflection in the polished surface.

The wolf howled and began throwing its self against the bars, but these very bars had held for generations of wolves.  So close to this much silver it would probably be salivating blood soon enough.  A single silver bullet would kill a werewolf, while silver chains would burn it away to nothing, leaving the man.

“I’m disappointed.”  I pouted, though the thrilling feeling of what I was about to do was bubbling up within me.  “I thought you’d like my present.”

It howled again, the sound reverberating off of the walls so loud it threatened to give me a headache.

“Stop that,” I snapped and stood up, machete in hand.  The great maws opened to howl again.  Rage at being disobeyed gnawed at me.  “Kulikuli!”  A crackling of white light shot from my outstretched hand and hit the wolf, knocking the air out of it and slamming the creature back against the bars.

Smug, I pulled out the third key.  “That’s why I use my native language,” I informed the wolf.  “There are so many things that can be implied that the magic takes different forms.”

The wolf recovered faster than I thought it would and bunched low, as if to spring at me. “Wailana,” I said sternly.  The energy transfer had already taken place; I just had to mold it to what I wanted it to do.  The form of the wolf glowed and the creature held perfectly still.

“It’s so much easier when you cooperate.”

I walked towards the creature, my boots making soft thumping sounds against the stone.  The wolf, stilled and silenced couldn’t do anything but glare at me with those feral red eyes.

“We’re going to have so much fun together.”  I grinned and ruffed the fur on top of the wolfs head, and tried to decide which part of him I would cut first.

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