Fourteen||The Hunter & The Hunted

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I had been on the island of Aeberuthey long enough to see the bright green forest turn to an orange and yellow hue. The summer months had not lasted long and the air was beginning to acquire a foggy chill.

I was glad to have Naxan to navigate the island for me. He had found a cave where we would be able to live through the winter months to keep warm.

Currently, I was in the middle of making arrows. Alec had critiqued my work until I had made a proper looking bow that would be sturdy and shoot straight. It lay beside me. It was not the nicest looking weapon around, but I was proud to have made this on my own. Even if the thought of it still made me queasy, I was, in a way, grateful to have someone to teach me such things.

My arrowheads were made of stone that I had sharpened. Arrows in today's age were normally made out of smelted metals, but seeing as how I didn't have the proper tools or ways to make such things, stone would have to do. I felt like I was living in another time.

Alec had shown me how to skin an animal to acquire every part of the animal as it wouldn't go to waste. Naxan had captured a buffalo calf to eat, but I used some of its parts for myself. Its hide and fur I used for a new bed mat and its leg tendon to string my bow.

I was alight with excitement upon completing my weapons. I could finally hunt for myself and not depend on someone else to do it for me.

The day was well past noon before I finished my weapons. I was confident that I would be able to hunt properly now.

Looking at Naxan, I watched as he sniffed the air. His head slightly bobbing as he did so. His head turned to look at me. "Smells." He constantly was reminding me of my unlikeable scent.

I let out a heavy breath while gathering my things. "Thanks for reminding me, Naxan." In my pack amongst the other things, I saw the stone that has started this all. I hadn't seen it for quite some time or really even thought about it. Its sooty darkness swirled like a rising storm. A quick flash of light broke through the darkness.

Naxan's body coiled around mine as he peered into my bag. His nostrils flared as he breathed in. I stood and watched him as he put his head into my pack.

"Let's go hunting." I smiled brightly.

Naxan huffed and shook out his body, extending his dark wings. "Slow I down."

"Slow me down." I corrected him. "And I need to hunt for myself."

He growled, but he walked with me. I watched my dragon walk through the undergrowth. He had grown in the time I have spent with him. Before my head was just at his shoulders. Now I could walk under his belly, barely having to crouch. It amazed me, I wondered how big he would grow to be.

A bitter feeling ran through me. I wish I knew anything about my dragon. The school rejecting me was still an upsetting memory. I was determined to show everyone who ever doubted me what I was capable of. Especially those damn Council members.

I watched the forest as we walked through it to distract myself from my angering nerves. There was no sign of anything lurking, or I hoped so. Naxan had a keener sense of things than I, so if he seemed agitated, then that's when I would start to worry.

The dragon occasionally stuck his head in the air to sniff out the surroundings. "Close." Naxan's voice spoke through the bond. His tail tip twitched ever so slightly.

My heart rate picked up in excitement. My hand gripped my bow tighter as I looked in the direction Naxan was walking to. Naxan stopped in his tracks to look at me. His gaze looked to my feet. "Too loud." His pupils slit in annoyance. "Watch where steps."

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