Angiss - Part IIIMature

Immortal? I’d rather not test your words. If it turns out you are just mentally damaged, it’d be more trouble than it’s worth.

Angiss’ body suddenly jolted into motion. With fast, eerie motions she found her feet. She stripped her cloak and threw it over her sister. The elf collected her bow and quiver, strapping them on her back.

Both of them were specially designed not to impede her mobility. The quiver could hold only seven arrows, each lying in its own channel that would prevent it from falling out. The bow was short and curved and even though Angiss was rather short for her own species - only one-seventy, it barely poked over her shoulder.

Angiss took a deep breath and with a final glance towards her sister, started running. With every step her body built more and more momentum. With extraordinary speed and balance she practically flew through the forest.

While her body rejoiced, her mind was busy at work. Magic… what do I know about magic? Magic wasn’t rare in Avalon. Every race had a bit of magic in it. A lot of elves could turn animals into familiars. Others could become Keepers, gaining the ability to manipulate trees. Then there was the Khata’a clan, they could extract memories and pass them on to different hosts.

In fact the Khata’a were the very force behind the Legion’s power. Whenever a soldier died his or her muscle memories could be implanted in a new host, greatly enhancing the new soldier. Angiss herself had been implanted with the memories of three previous stalkers.

The sad reality was that most of the time, one could extract very little from a foreign memory and a lot of potential was lost. Angiss’ predecessors had helped her quite a bit via their memories, however, not nearly as much as she would’ve liked.

With all the magic flowing around Avalon, anomalies were bound to occur. After all, she was yet to meet anyone who could do what she could. Focus!

Yet Gard’s magic had felt weird. Her senses were unusually sharp, so she could generally feel when someone was using magic. His, however, she couldn’t sense.

The simpler the magic, the easier it was for her to spot, but complex magic almost always needed a focus – a core of some sorts or a gem at the very least.  Even if it didn’t, the user still needed a life time of experience to master it properly.

A Keeper became a master of his magic only shortly before dying of old age and some Keepers never really mastered their art.

Then there was the whole immortality business. Angiss had hunted the monstrous Jine’eries for over fifteen years and when she was young, she would have never believed that creatures such as them could exist. Is my disbelief of Gart’s words an act of childish stupidity?

Her thoughts suddenly came to a halt as her nostrils filled with a familiar scent. She could smell fear.

Angiss caught a nearby tree, easing her body to a still. She had been running at random for over an hour and was yet to break out in sweat.

She slowly sniffed the air. She could make out blood and deer. Someone’s b’in huntin'.

It didn’t take her long to find the deer. Huge chunks of flesh were missing from the animal’s carcass and yet the corpse was relatively untouched. No wolf has that big of a jaw. Why has it eaten so little?

The Jine’ery that she and her sister had been hunting before Gart’s arrival had never left his food unfinished and it usually buried the bones. That had made it difficult for her to track it.

Is it a different one? Did something scare it away?

Angiss closed her eyes, carefully inhaling. She couldn’t pick out any other scents. A Jine’ery never left smell behind, but normal predators never approached a Jine’ery’s kill, no matter how hungry they were.

The elf started pacing around the kill, inspecting the nearby trees. Several of them wore big claw marks. Why go through all the trouble of evading with finesse so far, if you are just going to make it easy?

Whenever the Jine’ery ran at full speed, it used nearby trees as anchors to maintain balance. Her own running technique was a mirror of theirs, of course she didn’t leave huge claw marks behind herself.

A trap maybe? With a shake of her head, she followed the trail. If the beast wanted a fight, she would give it one.

The marks led her out of the forest and onto a road. There she found a body.

His uniform bore the insignia of a high ranking Keeper and to her surprise, was very much alive. She carefully and lightly kicked the unconscious man, examining his face. There was a big blue spot on his left cheek and he looked rather pale for an elf. Her nudge didn’t cause any reaction on his part.

Angiss put her hands on her waist and walked around observing the area. She couldn’t find a new trail of claws, so she made her way back to the fallen elf.

So it caught a deer, left it half eaten, rushed over three hundred meters at full speed, to punch a guy in the face and then casually walked away… DA FUCK!?

The End

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