|The Battle in the Dragon's Lair
As Modoc turned to face the humans, Max quickly grabbed Gwendolyn's arm, and said, "Come! Let's climb that boulder pile!"
The two hurried to the cavern wall from which a rock slide had long ago had built a leak of rock, gravel, and stone.
They had barely made it when Modoc let loose a solid sheet of flame where they had stood. Modoc knew that Max and Gwendolyn were trapped and she pressed her advantage. She ran forward towards the rock pile. Gwendolyn threw herself at the rock slide and quickly scaled the almost vertical wall. She gained foothold after foothold as she made her way to the top. Max followed close behind, pieces of gravel and small stone hitting his face and body as he followed. A large, flat stone at the top of the column of rock provided a platform on which they could stand.
Max sensed a voice going through his mind, "You've nowhere to run or hide! And now, you are mine!"
Max thought he would feel the dragon's presence when it tried the mind meld. Now he realized that the dragon may have been in tune with his thoughts from the time he had stopped singing!
He heard a harsh laugh! "You thought the singing could block me out! But you couldn't keep it steady. I was there when you gazed into the eyes of the female before you cut her bonds! I was there as you dazzled yourself in your thoughts of how this human touched your heart in a way that no other female had touched you before."
Max turned his eyes towards Gwendolyn to see if she was hearing these words and to see how it would affect her. As his gaze stopped on her, she leaped to him! "Oh, noble knight!" she said, "Oh, I really wanted...I was hoping that you would find me...that you could make a life with a serf girl."
He held her in his arms as three thoughts sliced wildly through his mind.
"Oh, she does love me!"
"The dragon has been reading our thoughts the whole time and still is!"
"The dragon will soon be upon us if we don't move!"
Max kissed her and said, "I love you! My name is Max. Hold tight, though, for I have a beast to slay!"
He turned her lose and moved to the end of the rock pile where he heard the dragon.
She called after him, "I'm Gwendolyn!" She hoped he had heard her.
The monster had turned the corner into the nick where they had been before they had climbed. She could almost reach her head to where they had found refuge and was trying to find boulders that would hold her weight, so she could get her head to the level to scorch them.
Modoc would get the humans! She was disappointed that they had managed to escape her once more, but soon they would be her lunch! She could even starve them out, but she wanted instant gratification. She searched for a large stone that would not slide under her weight so she could climb to the humans. She could not easily fly about in her cavern because it was too small and cramped!
Max reached for the sword that he had tied to his waist so he could climb. He pulled it free and brandished it in the air. He moved around on the flat boulder until he was over Modoc's head. Gwendolyn screamed as she saw him leap in the air, place the sword's handle flanges under his feet, and ride the sword into the dragon's neck. A quick fountain of blood spurted across Max's legs and waist. The fountain, after the initial spray, fell back to a slow trickle. Modoc screeched in pain as the sword, propelled by Max's weight, pierced scale and hide, sank into her neck just below the base of her skull! The shriek of pain reverberated through the cave, causing a sharp pain to knife through Gwendolyn's ears! Modoc whipped her head towards the cavern floor and Max saw the gravel and rock in slow motion as it came towards him. He felt sharp pain shooting from his arm and hip and then through his whole body, as he impacted the cave's floor! His mind exploded in red and then yellow splashes of color!
As soon as she gained control of her senses, Gwendolyn ran to the edge of the rock from which Max had jumped. She notched an arrow and took swift aim at the dragon's forehead which was now moving back towards Max. She let the arrow fly striking the monster near its left eye! The arrow barely went through the eye membrane's softer hide, but the pain caused the monster to lose focus on Max and turned its concentration towards the girl! The head, already in motion, gave Max a glancing blow as the dragon changed its mind from tearing Max with its beak like mouth of razor sharp teeth to attacking the woman above. Gwendolyn had already slipped another arrow in place and aimed for the hole in the throat of the dragon's opened mouth. She let it loose just as the dragon belched fire at her, consuming the arrow and singeing her hair as she rolled back from sight!
That interruption gave Max time to shake off the pain from hitting the cavern floor and from the wallop he received from the dragon's head! He didn't see the arrow fired and wondered why the dragon had lost focus on him to apparently attack Lynn. Max rolled to the side and realized that he was only armed with a knife, which could hardly do much damage to the beast! He watched the dragon try to negotiate the rock pile to get to Lynn, and at the same time, searched for any kind of a weapon. Suddenly, he saw the sword Modoc had pulled from her lower neck earlier!
Modoc, reading Max's thoughts, turned from her attack on the female to take care of Max before he could gain another weapon. The arrows stung, but Modoc knew how dangerous a weapon was in the hands of this young warrior! She had not picked up on Max's attack earlier with the sword for Max had moved out of his fighting instinct rather than planning the attack. And that was her weak spot. Modoc knew that she could not outwit the fighter instinct in this human. She had to keep him weaponless and finish him off, or he could possibly kill her! Could that be!? But the pain from the sword in her neck told her that it was very possible. Her body felt weak and she was not moving at full strength after that last blow to the back of her head. She still felt some soreness from Max's earlier sword attack while they were in the rocks before the cavern. Oh, how the pain from the present sword throbbed up and down her neck!
The sword was close to the cave's inner walls so the beast had her back to Gwendolyn. Both Max and the dragon were moving away from her. She could no longer get a good shot at the monster's face, the only place Gwendolyn felt she could cause any damage or distraction.
Gwendolyn quickly made her way down the rock pile, climbing and sliding, while Max hurried towards the sword. Modoc groggily sped after him! Max sensed the dragon upon him and jumped to the side just in time to catch the sharp glancing blow of the razor sharp claws of the dragon's fore arm. The sudden pain caused him to wretch!
"It's over for you now!" rang the dragon's victory cry in his mind.
Max finished the acrobatic roll that he had begun, and forced himself to run forward towards the sword. He felt the place along his side where he felt searing pain. He pulled his hand back after feeling a sticky liquid. He looked down and saw that it was blood. He fell on the cavern floor next to the sword. He saw the dragon rear its head above him as if to look at him one last time before eating him. Gwendolyn was down from the rock pile, but could not make it to where she could get a front shot. She knelt and aimed for the dragon's right eye, but as she released her arrow, the dragon swiftly began its strike, the deadly sharp teeth ready to sink into Max's flesh! Max dodged diagonally to the left and towards the dragon to position himself for a counter strike. He could feel the breath from the massive jaw as it snapped shut on the air where Max had been. Max thrust the sword as hard as he could at the beast's head. The sword did not even pierce the dragon's skin. Modoc slung her head towards the blow and sent Max sailing into the cave's wall. He felt the wind leave his body as the blackness once again fogged his mind.
By this time, Gwendolyn was behind a boulder to the front of the dragon. She gasped as she saw Max, bloodied and bruised, hit the wall with a thud. She notched an arrow and sent it towards the beast's right eye once more. The arrow hit home while she quickly readied another one. Modoc screamed as the needle like arrow sank into her cornea. She turned towards the girl but Gwendolyn let go another arrow to the same eye. Then Gwendolyn dove to the base of the boulder as the dragon belched a river of fire at her.
Max awoke but felt as if in a dream. He could not move his body though he willed it! The dragon was headed for Gwendolyn. He had to move! With every ounce of energy he had, he staggered to his feet.
Gwendolyn saw the dragon move to come around the right side of her boulder, so she scooted off to the left. As she burst into a run towards Max, the dragon sped around the boulder. Max, moving painfully, picked up the sword that had fallen to the cavern floor.
"Come" yelled Gwendolyn, for she saw that she was close to the entrance to the cave from the inner cavern chamber from which she had entered the main cave.
Max turned to run behind her, but realized it was too late! He had to find a place to make a stand. Max realized he was trapped. The lava beds were to the left of him, the wall to the right, and the dragon was almost in range to roast him. This was the end!
Gwendolyn found a good fighting spot in the inner cave's entrance. If the dragon came too close, she could dodge back in. The hole was way too small for Modoc to enter. She could move out and in at will. Just a little way inside were more weapons, though they seemed useless against the giant beast.
But, it was for naught, for the one she cared about more than life was about to be taken from her. As Max prepared to face certain death, she shot out of the cave's entrance towards the weird purple boulder with the white stripes, which was next to the lava bed.
Maybe she could get another eye shot from there.
Modoc was upon Max. Max saw the muscled limbs moving up and down as the dragon ran within fire belching range. He limped towards the dragon to strike as he would be struck, but the dragon seemed not to know that he was there! No fire. No downward swing with the terrible mouth full of knife like teeth! She was going to run over him!
Max leaped aside and the dragon headed straight for Gwendolyn. Gwendolyn fled from the purple boulder and back to the inner cave entrance. Modoc stood at the boulder and roared defiantly.
Max could not believe he was still alive. Why had the dragon charged Gwendolyn instead of finishing him off? Then Max saw the spear that Gwendolyn had left behind when she gave him the sword. Max limpingly ran to the mouth of the cave where it overlooked the enchanted gardens and picked up the spear there. Longer than the sword, it would make a great weapon! Max then turned and hurried painfully back to meet the dragon.
"Dragons, Britons, and the Saxon Invasion" 13+: Dragons did exist on the planet Earth around the days of the Roman colony of Briton.
"When All Is Lost" 13+: Chapter 1: The disillusionment begins.
"A Ray of Hope" 18+: Chapter 2: Leaving the past.
"The Maiden in the Enchanted Garden" 13+: Chapter 3: Meeting new people. One to fight;one to fight for.
"Prepare to Die" 18+: Chapter 4: Beware the black knight
"The Dragon's Meal" 13+: Chapter 5 What do you say when you are on the menu?
"Building a Strategy" 13+: Chapter 6: How do you fight a mind reading dragon?
"The Return of the Warrior" 13+: Chapter 7: "Where are you going, Sir Knight?" "To victory!", he roared.
"The Strategy of the Damsel Warrior" 13+: Chapter 8: My heart sings
"The Wrath of the Dragon" 13+: Chapter 9: I dodge your scorching fire belched for my funeral pyre.
"The Dragon's Might" 13+: Chapter 10: The edge where courage ends and sheer folly begins.
"The Flight of the Dragon" 13+: Chapter 11: I was looking for adventure, but found you!
"He's Alive" 13+: Chapter 12: "He's alive! He's alive!"
"The Die is Cast" 13+: Chapter 13: Arena, actors, and agendas meet on life's stage.
"The Battle in the Dragon's Lair" 13+: Chapter 14: "Now you are mine!" Rang the dragon's victory cry in his mind.
"The Face of Death" 18+: Chapter 15: The dragon's sharp teeth sped for his body. "Now I win!"
"The Battle Has Just Begun" 13+: Chapter 16: Life is rolling waves crashing on a shore; struggles rise and fall.
"The Dragon's Riddle" 13+: Chapter 17: "A boone for you; an answer to your problems"
"The Fight For Life" 13+: Chapter 18: Where does one go when their world is dying?
"A New Friend" 13+: Chapter 19: Reality and perception; see the both at once.
"The Road to Recovery" 13+: Chapter 20: The beast ripped the flesh with knife like teeth.
"Through a Dragon's Mind" 13+: Chapter 21: Slipping behind Max, she crushed the berries into his hair.
"Preparing For The Future" 13+: Chapter 22: "Humans cannot name a dragon. I am Davyn"
"Facing the Past" 13+: Chapter 23: The fear and joy of going home.
"Epilog" 13+: Epilog: This is just the beginning...