The conclusion of April’s saucy writing prompt is done! In addition, I managed to make it work for May’s writing prompt as well. *flex* See Part 1 before reading this (if you want it to make sense).
Right. Okay. So the trolls here trussed up visitors and fed them to a giant crocolisk.
She could deal with this. No problem.
A bead of sweat spilled over her forehead and landed on the sand beneath her.
Where was Roshii?
The crocolisk advanced slowly, no hint of rush or concern. This was obviously not the first feast he’d had presented to him.
Tayt suppressed the urge to test her bonds again. Where was Roshii?
The croc moved forward, its gait a cross between a waddle and a slither. The prostrate trolls lined a wide path that led straight to her.
Panicked, Tayt’s eyes cast desperately around. Where. Was. ROSHII?!
Her vision blackened and shifted dizzyingly. She closed her eyes as her stomach lurched.
After a brief moment, the world stilled on its axis and she opened her eyes. She was in the jungle, no beach in sight. Furthermore, everything she saw was oddly flat and colorless. The leaves of the trees were ashen in color, and gave off a hazy, blurry glow. What happened? Was she dead? Shouldn’t there be more flames and tortured screams if she was?
She lurched to her feet and immediately overbalanced and tumbled sideways. Her stomach felt leaden and distended, pressing uncomfortably against her belly. She reached a hand down to push herself up, but collapsed again. Her arm was too short.
That didn’t make any sense. Why would her arm be too short? She tried to look down at herself, but her head felt large and unwieldy. With some effort, she was able to turn her head at an uncomfortable angle and see most of her lower body. If she was dead, this was an odd sort of joke for the afterlife. Somehow, her slim, blood elf body had been replaced with the scaled, teapot-shaped body of a raptor. She was most definitely not okay with this.
She heard a familiar querying chirrup. Roshii? She looked around, but couldn’t see him anywhere. Though, as blurry as everything was, she wasn’t entirely sure she’d have seen him if he’d been standing right in front of her. The chirp came again, and this time she realized she hadn’t heard it with her ears. Somehow, she’d heard it inside her head.
Immediately, she understood. Eyes of the Beast. She’d heard of the skill from various hunter trainers, and again from Bessie, but she’d always discounted it as a useless skill. She’d attempted it once or twice, mostly because Bessie had harped on it, but she’d never been able to do it.
She’d never understood the point of being able to see through her pet’s eyes when her own eyes were perfectly fine.
But here she was, obviously using the skill. In her final moments before death, she’d managed to perfect one of the most useless hunter skills imaginable. How embarrassing. At least Bessie wasn’t here to see it.
Roshii’s voice sounded again, this time voicing the sleepy, satisfied sound he made after a large meal. Her eyes narrowed and she patted her distended belly with a stubby forepaw.
So that’s what he’d been doing while she was in mortal danger? While she’d been carted off like a stuck pig and escorted to her doom, the gluttonous lizard had been in a food coma?!
Roshii gave an embarrassed chitter. She snorted. He’d better be embarrassed! But moreso, he’d better hightail his scaly hide over to where she was and save her, otherwise he was going to be on his own. And that meant no more free food. He’d have to hunt for everything, and he’d never see another slice of delicious chocolate cake again!
Just before her vision faded again, he gave a horrified screech.
Another dizzying lurch, and she opened her eyes to find herself back in her own body. The crocolisk hadn’t made it much closer, which was a relief. It wouldn’t have done her much good to come back to find her head stuck between the crocolisk’s jaws.
Now all she had to do was wait for Roshii to show up and rescue her.
The croc scuttled forward, all six stubby legs working together to pull his belly across the sand toward her.
Any minute now, Roshii would burst through the treeline and pounce on the croc.
The crocolisk reached her side and paused, one fist-sized black eye blinking at her briefly. He opened his jaws wide and released a gutteral breath. She felt his hot breath waft across her belly.
Any second now. Her teeth clenched.
The female troll shaman lifted the glittering pineapple high and continued chanting.
Tayt closed her eyes. What an embarrassing death. Fed to a crocodile god by savages, while her raptor took an afternoon nap. Bessie would laugh her hooves off.
A familiar, screeching warcry broke the air, and the croc gave a pained snarl, turning to face this new annoyance.
Tayt opened her eyes. Roshii had come after all! As the croc turned away, she saw a series of shallow cuts across his hindquarters. Roshii had scored a hit!
The bright raptor danced just out of the crocolisk’s range. The croc lunged at him, wicked jaws open wide, and Roshii darted away and in, raking the croc across the back with his scythe claws before moving out of range again.
Again, and again they danced, and each time Roshii managed to avoid those finger-length teeth by a small margin.
As the fight ranged on, Tayt began to worry. The raptor’s claws seemed to be causing only superficial damage at best, and Roshii was tiring quickly.
He looked so tiny next to the crocolisk, like a fly pestering a cat.
Her attention shifted to the trolls. As soon as the raptor attacked, the prostrate trolls had scattered a short distance away, and now ringed the two battling animals like spectators at a ring sport.
With every inward dart, they would yell, and with every clack of the crocolisk’s jaws slamming shut, empty, they would cheer.
Nobody was watching her, not even the shaman troll.
Quickly, she shifted herself so that she could bite and pull at her tunic, exposing the thin knife sheath tied to her upper arm. Straining, she leaned further, trying to get her lips or teeth around the flat hilt of the blade.
She just barely managed a solid grip on it when the cheering of the trolls suddenly gave way to horrified gasping. What had happened? What did she miss?
Startled, she jerked back. The sharp edge of the knife slid wetly across the tender skin of the inside of her arm and she hissed in pain, careful not to drop the knife.
She turned back to the scene and nearly dropped it anyway. Roshii was bleeding. A savage wound on his flank gaped, exposing angry red flesh. Ribbons of blood threaded down his leg and between his toes. As he darted away from a savage lunge from the crocolisk, he limped and stumbled, barely able to avoid the crushing jaws.
Roshii’s mouth was open as he panted. He put too much weight on the leg and gave an involuntary sound of pain.
Tayt snarled. How DARE that oversized toad hurt Roshii? How DARE he? Anger flowed over her, a burning liquid fire through her veins. She wouldn’t allow it! The knife fell from her lips as she opened her mouth to scream. The sound ripped from her lungs, primal and angry. She felt like a cup, full to overflowing with pulsing rage. The rage demanded an outlet.
It found one, spilling out of her all at once and leaving her gasping.
He was…growing? He doubled in size almost instantly and his skin turned bright red. He turned back to his foe, eyes narrowed and jaw parted to release a deadly hiss. No longer did he look tiny beside the crocolisk – now he was equally monstrous, and just as dangerous. Roshii screamed again, victoriously, and darted forward. This time, when his claws raked the croc’s back, thick, dark blood welled from the furrows in the skin, and it was the crocolisk who screamed in pain.
Again Roshii rushed forward, and again the croc gave a gutteral roar. The croc turned away, trying to run, but his stubby legs were unsuited to the sand. He flailed, sliding towards the safety of the water, but Roshii did not let him go. The raptor gave a mighty leap and landed on the crocolisk’s back. With one swift motion, Roshii’s blunt muzzle dove down to the place where the crocolisk’s head met his neck. Swiftly, he leapt away. The croc writhed on the ground for a moment, then was still.
The trolls fell silent as the mighty red raptor gave a dangerous purr, swiveling his bloody head in a semi-circle to glare at each of them individually.
Tayt briefly allowed herself to imagine him decimating the entire troll tribe, but she doubted he’d be able to take them all on. There were too many of them. They needed to get out of here before the trolls fully realized that she and Roshii had just killed one of their gods.
She gave a sharp whistle, and immediately Roshii’s ferociousness vanished. The red glow disappeared from his skin and he shrank back down to his normal size. With a quizzical chirrup, he limped over to her, butting her playfully in the side and sending her swinging.
“Roshii! That’s not helping, you oaf! Help me out of these bonds before the trolls decide to find something even bigger to feed us to!” The raptor turned his head curiously and she struggled against her wrists. If only she hadn’t dropped the knife. “Bite the ropes on my wrists or something!” He headbutted her again.
The female troll stepped forward and leaned down to pick up the knife.
Roshii stood there and watched her, head still tilted curiously to one side. Great. He would save her from the crocolisk and let the troll slit her throat. Sometimes she wondered if his egg had been dropped once or twice before hatching.
With a decisive stroke, the shaman slit the bonds holding Tayt’s hands. Tayt’s upper body crashed to the sand below, her head and neck slamming painfully into the ground.
Another swift movement from the troll and the rest of her body joined her on the sand.
Gingerly, she lifted herself to her feet. Aside from the cut on her arm (which, as she was sure Bessie would point out, was her own damn fault for not being careful), she appeared to be intact. Her wrists, neck, back, and ankles were all going to be sore for a few days, but she was otherwise well.
Assuming the trolls weren’t still planning on killing her, of course.
She turned to look at the shaman troll, who immediately bowed forward, cupping the knife in her hands and presenting it back to Tayt.
Suspiciously, Tayt accepted it and carefully slipped it back into its holster. In response, all of the trolls cheered. Slowly, a broad grin blossomed across her lips as the cheering trolls began to prostrate themselves in the sand, bowing down before Roshii. This, she could live with.
Two days later, Bessie arrived on the island, a very contrite pirate crew at her beck and call. The tauren found her student lounging in a hammock and drinking something fruity from a coconut shell. Roshii slept at her feet, his forepaws resting lightly over his distended belly, snoring.
“What took you so long?” asked Tayt, surveying her teacher with half-lidded eyes..
Bessie gave her a glare, tossing her re-acquired packs on the sand near Roshii. “When your pirates arrived ashore without you, I thought you might have been in some trouble.” She crossed her arms, stance wide and tufted tail thrashing irritably. “I suppose it would be a waste of time to ask if you managed to complete your mission?”
“Oh ye of little faith.” Smugly, Tayt reached behind the tree and tossed the jeweled pineapple at her teacher. The tauren caught it deftly, one eyebrow lifted.
She’d traded it for one of Roshii’s shed scythe claws. The trolls had been more than happy to make the trade for the claw of a god. As far as Tayt was concerned, if they wanted one of Roshii’s toenails, she was more than happy to oblige.
“I suppose you’re going to tell me that all of this was all part of your plan?” asked the tauren.
Tayt smirked. “Of course. I have a very calculating mind. I knew you’d be checking up on me, and I knew you’d find the pirates and my stolen gear. Always have an escape plan, you say. This time, you were my escape plan.”
Bessie snorted. “Did I ever tell you that you were one of my least favorite students?”
Tayt grinned widely. “Only every time you see me.”
The tauren grunted. “Good. Let’s go. Assuming you can wake that fat, useless pet of yours up.”
Bessie turned and started walking without waiting for a response.
After a moment, Tayt and Roshii followed, the raptor chittering unhappily at being awakened before he was finished digesting. Only the promise of chocolate cake was enough to get him moving toward the ship. Tayt smiled at his complaints. He may have a black hole where his stomach was supposed to be, but he certainly wasn’t useless.
They hurried to catch up. Bessie wasn’t likely to hold the ship for them.