Friday, February 24, 2006

Rise to the challenge

*To clear up previous confusion: I created my vampires to be like Bram Stoker's in that they can take on the form of the beast as well. As the heroine's major deity is Anubis, she prefers her canid form... And, I rewrote this scene because of Tsavo, and HS. I hope I was able to rise to the challenge...*

The wounded guard collapsed to the sands, his arm devoid of flesh below the elbow and bleeding heavily. The very sight of him taking air while my lover lay dead enraged me. Kahlili deserved death, and I would bring it to him. I took on my jackal form and pound the sands beneath my paws. I caught him up, my feet alighting in sand gone black and bloody with his sanguine sluice.

He screamed once as I pinned his legs beneath my paws. Then I melted toward human, my canid form falling away as I stood above his outstretched limbs. A shriek, a slap, and then silence. I dug the fingernails of my left hand into his scalp. He struggled. His lips poured out apologies, but I would not hear them. The fingers of my right hand encircled his throat, crushing his airway and stopping his blather. Through pointed predator teeth I snarled, "Nefertaten made with much less noise. Die with some dignity."

Recognition widened his eyes. "Yes," I mocked, "I took her life. I dumped her corpse in the hall…"

His pain was not enough. I lunged in and buried my fangs deep into his throat. His skin gagged me as I bit down, rent muscle and severed vessels. I wrenched free a chunk of his flesh, and spat it out into my palm. Kahlili's eyes rolled, but I refused him unconscious respite. I smacked him with the his own meat, forced him open his eyes and focus on me, his deliverer of death.

He sat mute and unmoving.

I released his scalp, and drove my hands into his chest, and up under his ribcage. Kahlili's body convulsed beneath me and I ripped his heart free of his body. "For Djosiah," I snarled, and drove the dripping sack into his mouth. Blood trickled like drool as his jaw fell and his body failed.

I left Kahlili's body there for the jackals. It was a better end than he deserved.

I took on the form of my canine desert companions, and raced across the sands. Rage spurned me to greater speeds, and on the edge of town I overtook the second guard. I dispatched him in much the same manner as his murderous cohort. Three bodies fed the sands of Egypt this night, two of them my prey and I was still on the hunt. I loosed a yowl of vengeance and dropped my nose to the sands as I tracked my half-brother's scent.

The miserable man fled straight to the palace, where I found his stalllion untethered. He was gone and the beast blocked my path. I circled the cantankerous animal. The horse whistled, and kicked at me. I launched from the sands, took the exhausted animal down. Fangs buried deep in it's neck, I eviscerated it with my back legs.

Once more, joints cracked as they turned, and skin tingled as my pelt melted away. For the briefest moment, I resembled Anubis, human body with a jackal's head. Complete, yet not quite whole, I sidestepped the horse's steaming entrails as I used its mane to wipe the blood from my face.

Stupid beast, I thought, I never did like you...


Michele said...

This one is more harsh in some aspects. There are some elements in the first I enjoyed and think should be kept....dark as they may be. Many additions in this version are welcome and fitting.

One word "Rage spurned me to greater speeds"..I am going to assume a typo and the word was "Spurred", right?

Enjoyed the update. Thanks!

alexandra said...

Ah! Superb, the difference is remarkable, and, this version, in mho, is tight, taut and far more readable. Excellent. Look fowrard to reading more.

Savannah Jordan said...

'Spurned' was actually supposed to be there, because this is one of the first time she given into that which she does not like.

I'm not sure what I will do with the scene, but I will keep my #1 FanGirl in mind if I do. :)

Thanks! I will post more scenes as the mood strikes. Most often, it is the erotic that is posted here, sometimes mixed with the shadowed and sanguinary. Fun stuff!!

Sela Carsen said...

I like it. A lot more rage-filled, a lot more, er, visceral. In more ways than one.

But now I'm kinda squicked out by your heroine. That's going to get better, right? LOL

Savannah Jordan said...

HI, Sela!!

Ummm... "squicked out"... well, the title of this novel is Forever Dark; so she IS a bit on the bitchy side. But, she has a soft side, too. Maybe I'll post one of the love scenes...

Thanks for stopping by!!

H.S. Kinn said...

Much tighter, and yet it retains sense of urgent vengeance...*applauds*

Savannah Jordan said...

Thanks, HS!! :)

Tsavo Leone said...

Sorry it took a while to get back here and read this.

Much smoother, but still with that sense of urgency (and a fairly brutal death - WooHoo!) spurring me on to the end of the piece. And a cool punchline.

Most excellent.

Savannah Jordan said...

Thanks alot, Tsavo! Brutal deaths are FUN! (But, is there any other way?? *wicked grin*) As to the punchline, well, "...write what you know..." Sarcasm isn't just a spelling word that I learned. :)

I appreciate the second review.