Chapter 6: Flying Feathers
The weanlings got to their hooves, their wings rattling in unison. Specklefeather’s ears swiveled, her nostrils flaring.
“What’s that!?” Shrieked a filly, pointing her wing to the sky. The group looked to where the filly was pointing, and immediately tensed. A large group of pegasai were flying at full speed towards them, their green, brown, and amber feathers glittering in the sunlight.
“Jungle Herd…” Murmured Sunsky, “What are they doing here?!”
Specklefeather reared, getting the weanling’s attention, “Get to the Red Rock Mountains, NOW!” She whinnied, the weanlings scattering in fear. The Jungle Herd steeds descended onto the remnants of the Desert Herd Army, gold and green flashing in the bright sunlight. Feathers drifted to the ground around Skysun as the steeds clashed. Skysun limped in the direction of the Red Rock Mountains, chaos ensuing above her. A Desert Herd steed crashed to the ground several wing-lengths beside her, at best, breaking her wings, at worst, dead. Skysun couldn’t stop to investigate, she had to get to the cover of the Red Rock Mountains, and fast. She watched as her mother lead the Sky Herders that were left behind into the sky, attempting to break apart the attackers, but to no avail, as the Jungle Herd Sky Herders countered them. This seriously disturbed Skysun as she limped towards safety. Up ahead she saw the Desert Herd weanlings stream into the lower caves of the Red Rock Mountains. Looking up, Skysun noticed the battle was coming closer to the ground…and closer to her.
‘Hurry, hurry, HURRY!’ Skysun thought attempting to limp faster. Jungle Herd seemed to be preserving their strength darting in and out of the battle, lashing out at the Desert Herd steeds as they passed. ‘Why are they here!?’ Skysun thought in fear, the sand below her hooves suddenly not giving her hooves any traction, causing her to fall on her muzzle, sand getting in her nose, making her sneeze. Looking at the sky as she scrambled to her hooves, her eyes widened in fear and shock as her mother plummeted to the ground. “Mama!” She bleated, scrambling over to her fallen mother. She skidded to a halt next to her, tears blurring her vision. Blinking away the tears, she saw that her mother was breathing, but barely. She lied down next to her bleating softly. Her head shot up in shock when she heard wingbeats and the unmistakable sound of pegasai landing beside her. Her ears pinned back and her wings rattled when she noticed two Jungle Herd Steeds were watching her intently. They looked at each other and smiled. They stalked closer, their heads lowered like a big cat’s. Skysun scrambled her hooves, her injured leg lifted slightly as it was throbbing in pain.
“Look at this…” The mare said with a cruel smile. “An injured filly, just ripe for the taking.”
“We should hurry,” Said the other, his eyes looking skyward. “It won’t take long for that battle to reach the ground, and when it does, we don’t want to be here.”
The mare nodded, “Viperwing will be pleased with what we were able to accomplish here.” She said, turning towards Skysun, obviously attempting to capture her. With a shriek, she reared, spinning on her back hooves before she leapt a wing-length away, limping as fast as she could.
“Grab her!” Called out the stallion, giving chase, “Before she takes flight!”
“We don’t have to worry about that,” The mare said, coasting just above the sand, “Her wings are injured, she can’t fly yet!”
Skysun’s eyes widened as she attempted to hobble away faster. ‘Why did I have to go and do that crazy cactus stunt!’ She thought, tears streaming down her face in fear. She landed heavily on her bad leg, causing her to grunt and fall on her side heavily. The two steeds landed beside her, smiling in victory, Skysun cowering on the ground between them.
“Let’s go-AGH!” Shrieked the mare.
Opening an eye, Skysun saw the Jungle Herd mare engaged in a fight with Specklefeather. Skysun attempted to get up, but the stallion beside her grabbed a hold of her wing and held her fast. Specklefeather fought fiercely, attempting to free the young filly from their grasp. The Jungle Herd mare, however, was quick and young, and after a small fight, smacked her with her front hooves, sending her flying into a large rock jutting out of the sand, knocking her out cold. Skysun’s eyes widened at the mare in front of her, the one who had tried to save her life. She searched for the tell tale rise and fall of her chest, but she was either too far away to see it, or she was…Skysun shut her eyes tightly, she couldn’t even think of the other option. The mare walked over, breathing heavily as she approached.
“Let’s get out of here…” She said, grabbing Skysun’s other wing. Skysun thrashed, but to no avail, the two full grown pegasai lifted off and coasted below the battle. Skysun could hear the calls of her Herd as they realized she was being taken captive, most attempted to rescue her, but the Jungle Herd steeds kept them back long enough for their herdmates to get away with her. Still attempting to fight, Skysun looked back, seeing the bodies of both Desert Herd and Jungle Herd steeds lying in the sand. Her ears pinned to the back of her head in anger as she saw other steeds flying away with a few other Desert Herd weanlings. Jungle Herd had attacked when they were the weakest…but…how did they know? How did they know that this raid would be successful?
And THAT is what was happening at the end of the last chapter!! A Desert Herd Sentry had seen the Jungle Herd steeds and had warned the herd. But the fight came with a cost, Skysun, and a few other Desert Herd weanlings, are captured by Jungle Herd! How do you think Jungle Herd knew that Adderfire had taken most of the Desert Herd Army to assist Cragwing? And WHY do you think they raided Desert Herd and not Snow Herd, Sun Herd, or Mountain Herd? After all, they ARE closer. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the part!! And as always, constructive criticism is welcome!!