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Subject: Finally getting this together:D


Author:
Tamith + Lucas
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Date Posted: 18:53:25 09/25/03 Thu
Author Host/IP: atl-tgn-ygn-vty12.as.wcom.net/216.192.201.12

Dawn finally came making a lazy entrance after the stormy night. The embers of the fire Lucas had tried so long to keep burning for most of the night had long since died abandoning him to his fortune half way before sunrise. He hadn’t been able to sleep all night. The pain and the knowledge that if he closed his eyes he might not open them again had been burning in the back of his mind for hours. With the first rays of sun, he was able to survey better his predicament. The first thing he discovered was that he could barely move his torso. After having spent most of the night in the same position, cramped wasn’t quite to word he’d use at the moment. His side was also covered in several bruises that were visible despite the fact that he had not stopped bleeding still. His breathing was becoming raspier by the second and every so often he’d go into coughing fits that would empty his lungs of the blood that had accumulated.
Namir nudge Lucas’ head. He smiled weakly at the great cat and raised a hand to scratch the back of his head. His eyes narrowed on his arm.
White.... He was pale as Death itself.
Namir noticed his sudden change in mood and nudged him again, slightly more forcibly as if urging him to survive.

“I’m working on it...” Lucas whispered, but even then he knew his chances of surviving another night as the one that had just passed where slim to none.

Already he could begin to feel a fever creep into his system ready to shatter whatever defenses his body might have left. He closed his eyes a moment enjoying the warm rays the rising sun was sending his way. Cold as he was, he knew this blessing would soon become a burden as his inability to move would not allow him to seek shelter in the near by trees when the heat of the day reached it’s peak. He smiled at the cruel irony of his situation. He had survived a shipwreck only to be attacked by a shipmate; he had lived through the night just to have to face the day that might prove to be even more merciless than the cold dark. His pain began to slowly melt into numbness as the full weight of the ordeal began to fall on his shoulders and he grew suddenly tired. Perhaps he should rest now, before the beating sun inhibited such luxury.


Allen darted ahead upon Highwind’s wings surveying with sharp eyes the topography below. Kael had sent him to look for the group of people they had been sent to meet and make sure all was well with his younger brother. The urgency in his tone had been evident even though the translator had been trying to hide it. Still, he had known Kael long enough to know better than not to take his hunches seriously. If he said there was trouble with Dylan, then there was trouble with Dylan and he’d make sure the younger brother was alright even if it meant leaving the camp in the middle of the night. Allen knew Kael hadn’t gotten much sleep either. His friend had probably spent the few hours the others had spent sleeping pacing about the camp.

“Somethings never change...” he said his partner. Highwings turned his head understandingly then announced their arrival to shore.

Up ahead Allen could spy a blue horizon that was the ocean. Now in full daylight finding a small camp and a group of people would be a lot easier than it had been at night. He nudged his partner to follow the shoreline. Featherlight had also volunteered to aid the search, but he was just a dark speck to their right as the little flier too surveyed the surface.

It took another hour, but he finally spotted what looked like the remnants of a camp. Highwind circled lower for his rider to get a better view. Allen furrowed his brow in confusion. Something was wrong with the camp. There seemed to be no activity whatsoever, despite the fact that it was almost noon. Not only that but he could spot only two people... where had the rest gone? From what he understood, this camp, if in fact these were the people he was looking for, should be beaming with activity...where were the habitat partners and the rest of the people that there should have been here? He quickly decided to fly lower to make sure he had found the right camp.

His confusion turned to horror as Highwind lost altitude. Both humans bellow him were simply lying on the ground as if lifeless, despite the fact that the arrival of a skybax rider always caused spurs of activity.

“Land,” Allen told his mount and the moment they touched down, jumped from the saddle and dashed to the camp. He had almost reached the human nearest to him, when an orange shadow intercepted his path. He jumped back, startled at the appearance of the saber-like cat.

“Nice kitty...” he murmured taking a cautious step backwards. The tiger fixed his yellow eyes on him like hunter on prey as every hair on his back rose to making it seem twice his size. Allen risked a look behind the cat and saw that he could spy light breathing coming from one of the two men there. He seemed very badly wounded and in need of immediate aid. A low growl made him focus his attention once more on more immediate danger. The tiger seemed to have absolutely no intention of letting him approach, and Allen has beginning to suspect it might no let him leave either.

“Please... I’m only trying to help!” he said in frustration. The big cat paused his approach for a second before lowering his head once again and preparing to pounce. Allen didn’t need more motivation than looking at the bared fangs and claws of the powerful animal to realize he would get no where with this. Slowly, and never taking his eyes off the tiger, he began to move backwards. Almost as if he had crossed the imaginary line of the cat’s territory, the tiger stopped following him after a few meters making it obvious he wasn’t going to hunt him, just prevent him from passing to where the two humans were.

The blonde skybax rider paced back towards his partner and checked his saddle pack. He glanced back towards the wounded humans and realized he didn’t have to medicine or materials to aid them much either. Cursing himself for his lack of vision, he pondered on what to do. The tiger wasn’t letting him get close, and he wouldn’t help the travelers by getting himself killed in the process. It didn’t take long for him to reach a decision. He’d fly back towards the others from Waterfall City, and get Kael to come. Highwind might just let the other human ride him. Heck, if anyone else could ride his mount, it was Kael. His friend had always been the better healer of them too, and by the looks of it, those humans were going to need all the help they could get. Kael might even figure out a way to get past the big cat! He climbed back on his mount and motioned the directions. With any luck, this trip would take him a few hours. It’d take Kael a few hours to get back, so if the wind was with him, he’d arrive at nightfall or shortly after. Allen nodded. So be it. Now all that was left to do was pray that these people could hang on long enough for him to return.

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