Far Horizons: Tales of Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Horror. Issue #13 April 2015 - Page 139

and bards. Today is a good day to die.” The warg did not respond immediately. It seemed to be contemplating Gamying’s words or perhaps it was communicating the information to its lycanthrope. Then it howled at the top of its voice. It was a long, piercing howl that sent shivers of fear through the three men. Seconds later, responses began to echo from afar. Gamying and Aglaral readied themselves for battle. There seemed little hope of victory, but if they could hold the doorway until dawn, perhaps the wargs would fall back and give them chance to rest. Manfred snored on, oblivious to the unfolding drama. Kris was now so white that he could have been mistaken for an albino. He quivered in terror, but drew his sword. He looked from Gamying to the wargs and wondered which he feared the most. The next few seconds or minutes seemed like hours. The wargs watched and waited for the signal from their leader. When it came, it was in a blurred flurry of fur and fangs. Snarls and howls filled the air. Gamying and Aglaral stood their ground, blades working methodically to keep the wargs at bay. When they fell back, three wargs lay dead at the doorway. Several others retreated to lick their wounds. Gamying and Aglaral collapsed to the floor to recover their breath. The fire was almost burned out. Manfred slept on. Kris was cowering in a foetal position at the back of the hut. “Are you hurt?” Gamying asked Aglaral.” “Only a few scratches,” replied Aglaral. “We will need to get them treated. Warg scratches PAGE 138 are notorious for becoming infected. It’s still a while before dawn. They will attack again soon. Perhaps the dead will form a barrier to protect us.” “What about him?” Aglaral gestured towards the cowering Kris. “I’m afraid there is no treatment for cowardice.” Gamying spat in Kris’s direction. “That infection has taken too great a hold. It will m