As promised, "A Gathering of Dragons" continues...
The Battle Begins!
Farloft made a quick visual assessment of the area between the gorge, that ran through the Westridge, to the castle on the opposite mountaintop. There were thousands of men pouring through the canyon like ants out of a disturbed nest. Wisely, Clearair was keeping herself and James out of range of the catapults and concentrating on the enemy horde. She and his son were doing their best to stop them before they could make it onto the field of battle.
The village of Brownbriar had been overrun and was burning in many places. So far, the enemy had not crossed the river. Catapults stood on the far side and slung boulders at the castle walls. They were taking a terrible beating. The walls were going to fall if something was not done soon.
He noted that Lemira had stayed and was doing her best to sink the ships of the mercenary pirates King Minuss sent against them. He could see two harpoons stuck in the dragoness’ back, but she was still fighting. These pirates were the enemy of her clan too. They were among those who preyed on the sea dragons.
There was no sign of the sons of Thrax.
“Rymit!” Farloft shouted over the noise of the battle. “Take out the catapults.”
Rymit dove to the ground and burrowed into it as if he were diving into water. Farloft could see the mound he created as he tunneled toward the catapults. Men and horses lost their footing and toppled as the ground below their feet rose and fell, with the dragon’s movement.
“Fafner… Royster…” the big green dragon called. “Once the catapults are down, BURN THEM!”
The Furry dragons flew to take their post high enough above the contraptions they would not be hit, and they waited for the towers to topple.
Farloft turned to Snow and his gryphon kin. “Help Clearair and James seal that gorge. I can dig it out later if it is the will of the Queen. We need to stop that horde from entering the kingdom. Work your magic, Snow.”
“Your wish is my command, Big Green,” Snow chirped, and the gryphon flock followed him toward the canyon.
Farloft wanted to get to the castle and find out if all the people from the surrounding countryside and the village were safely inside. Then he and his companions would be free to deal with the rabble as they saw fit.
It kept running through his mind that King Minuss would not have started the battle without the sons of Thrax. Graa and Kang had to be here somewhere. The king was holding them in reserve, or for some other plan of attack that Farloft could not see on the battlefield.
“Soary… Sanna…” Farloft addressed the little dragons sitting on either of his shoulders, “seek out King Minuss and see if you can find out what he is up to. I do not see Graa or Kang here and it troubles me. The king will be far behind enemy lines, well away from the battle. He is miserly and an inherent coward.”
“We will find him,” Soary said, as they fell from his shoulders like drifting leaves and floated out across the battlefield toward the forest beyond.
Mokum and Arrud sailed down out of the patchy clouds above.
“You started without us,” Mokum teased. “How rude.”
“We showed up and no one was there,” Arrud added.
“We waited as long as I thought we could. My link with the Healer is strong and I knew something was very wrong here,” Farloft explained.
“Obviously,” Mokum said, as they continued to hover far above the reach of any arrow or even a shaft from the catapults.
“Before you two join in the fight, I want to check and make sure all our people are safe in the castle,” Farloft explained. “Nothing can reach you if you rest for a moment on the peaks above the castle. I will join you there as soon as I can.”
Mokum looked a bit disappointed. “Wait?”
“Wait,” Farloft repeated.
The two dragons headed toward the peaks, as Farloft dropped to the courtyard within the castle walls.
Farloft overseeing the Battle by Elizabeth Babicz