I awoke the next morning with a jolt. Uguay wasn't with me anymore, and the spot beside me on the grass where he had been was dented flat and slightly charred. A single blood-red feather was left in his place.
I envied his deep red wings. They complimented our pale-gray skin tone much better than my black ones did. But he said that all women got black feathers, and very few had any other colors ever mixed in, and that I had to suck it up.
It still irritated me.
I sat up, groggy and irritated. How late had we been out...? Slowly, the night before recollected itself in my mind; sitting on top of the skyscraper, watching the sunset, then a little more traumatizing some hunters before bed. We found a cozy little nook some deer had been sleeping in, and took over their beds. They made relatively good supper.
I stood up carefully, not wanting to get a headrush, and shook off my damp wings. My nearly paper-thin dress stuck to my body in cold patches, and I plucked it away from my skin. Frost covered the grasses and trees, making everything appear white and my breath appear in little steamy puffs.
I shivered again, and looked around to see if Uguay was perched in some tree above me, or playing chicken with the geese flying south. When I didn't see him, I wrapped my arms around myself and turned around to start the march back into town. I hoped I wouldn't see Uguay, but at the same time I did. I felt as though what he told me watching the sunset last night, what little he did say, was closer to Uguay than I wanted to let myself be. But then he up and leaves me here?
The walk was quiet, it must have been below 30 degrees and no one in their right mind was out wandering; it wasn't elk season yet. I passed a couple of opportunities to cause misery, I noticed, and I made note that I was becoming more and more adept and finding situations like that.
I groaned and pulled my wings around my body and held them in front of my chest, concealing me like an ominous shadow. Wind picked up and threw my hair around my face, and caused little shards of ice and frost to sting my bare legs. It was the first feeling I'd gotten in a long time. I couldn't even feel the chill against my feet any more.
Then I realized why. From above, three red-winged beasts descended upon me, two of them taking my wings in hand as they landed. The third confronted me.
"What are you doing, Newblood?" he hissed. "Where's your mentor, pretty little Uguay?" He had spite in his voice.
"He left," I said coolly.
"Where?" snapped the men holding my wings. They kept me in place.
"Fuck if I know," I retorted. Shocked with myself, I covered my mouth with both hands. I'd never cursed so vulgarly in all my life!
"You must be fucked, then," said the largest of the men slowly. "Where is he?"
"Why do you care?" I prompted. I was expecting to get a good story from these three, or the cursing wouldn't have been worth it.
"Why do we care?" the largest man chuckled. "Us? We don't we're simply here to collect him for Master. He's the one who requested to see Uguay, and we intend on bringing Uguay to Him tout de suite, whether you're any help or not."
"So?" asked the man to my left.
"Where is he?" the one to my right.
"If I knew, he'd get more of a licking from me than he would Master," I said under my breath.
"And why's that, princess?" asked the largest man, grabbing my chin in his bulky hand and turning my eyes towards him.
"For up and fucking leaving me here," I said. What was wrong with me today?
"You have quite a little mouth, that might get you into trouble some day," he said, letting go of my chin and stepping back.
"With who, Ramone? Your pussy little pricks?"
I looked to see Uguay alight in front of me, and the two men at my sides dispatched. Uguay took his spot beside me and took my arm. "What does He want?"
"He wishes to speak with you, sooner than later. With emphasis on that sooner," the large man, Ramone, said collectively.
"Tell Him he can send better messengers than the likes of you, and that these two better watch them selves around Fera, before I whoop their asses myself," Uguay said menacingly, pulling me into the air with him.
"You'll regret that remark," Ramone said with a smirk.
"I'm sure I will," Uguay said sarcastically, flying out of earshot of the messengers.
Well shit. What had I gotten him into?