Going Against the Flow: Chapter 7- Noble Wings

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"Talon! Talon! Could you come down here please?! TALON! Can you hear me!" "Snow" Krystal Lyyn Nicole Winters called upward at the Fierce that was flying high above her. She saw him look down. "Coming!" He folded his pure-white wings and dove straight at her, as if to attack. But Snow didn't move or even flinch. She knew that he wouldn't hurt her, at least, not on purpose. But he WAS coming in a bit fast.... Just before it seemed that he would crash into her, Talon spread his strong wings and flapped them hard once. The drag he created with the flapping of his wings pushed him back about a foot and he landed softly in the green grass. Snow scanned him from head to foot, proud at the way she had raised him and helped him grow into the strong monster that he was. Talon's head was like an eagles, with a yellow beak and was adorned with pure-white feathers. On each side of his beak were fangs that hung downward and were always out, even when his beak was closed. The wings were also like an eagle's, that spanned five feet each way when fully extended. The feathers gradually turned into fur on his chest and then became feathers again on his legs. His legs were also like an eagle's, with talons that could either crush bones or gently lift a kitten. But on his left leg was fur, instead of feathers, that went up his thigh. His arms were strong and muscular, but instead of hands he had talons. Except for his right hand. It was like a paw and had long black nails, and fur ran the length of his right arm, unlike the left, which had feathers. Another oddity was his tail. Instead of having the triangular tailfeathers of an eagle, he had a rusty-red fox tail with a cream-colored tip. And what made him really cool was his color. He was all white, except for the fur on his chest, which was cream-colored. He wore a plain white T-shirt and faded blue jeans. Strapped to his back was a staffblade, his weapon of choice. A staffblade consisted of a grip with a long blade on each side. The weapon is difficult to use, but once a person mastered its use, it was a deadly weapon. Talon could teach the masters a thing or two. "You wanted to see me, Master?" Snow lowered her head. He was also very noble, showed great respect, and a feirce loyalty for his friends. That noble-respect thing had a downside. He kept calling her "Master", despite her complaints to him. It was time to set things straight. "Talon," she began, "how many times do I have to tell you not to call me 'Master'? Call me Snow, or Krystal, or Iron Sushi Chef Momoihana for all I care. But PLEASE, not 'Master'." Talon ruffled his wings, as if directly insulted. "But that would be rude. You are my Master and teacher. You have raised me and cared for me all my life. I must show the proper respect that you are due." Snow took a deep breath. "Okay then, how about this. When you call me 'Master', it makes me feel like an old woman. I'm only 32 years old! I HATE feeling like an old bag! Plus, it also makes me sound like I'm some sort of mean, hard slave driver. And that makes me uncomfortable. Call me "Snow", like all my friends do. You don't consider me a friend?" Snow gave Talon a questioning look. He looked hurt. "Of course I do Mas-, I mean, Snow." Snow smiled and breathed a sigh of relief. It felt so good to hear him call her Snow. "Thank you, Talon. I was thinking that today you could do the Pull exercise, followed by the Shoot and the Dodge exercises. But I'm gonna add an extra fifty pounds to the Pull exercise. I know you can do it." Talon stretched his arms over his head and cracked his back. "Let's go then, Snow!" The two walked over to a fairly large hill and at the base of the hill was a platform made of bricks. Attached to the platform were two leather straps that were slipped on over the shoulders. Near the platform were weights of different sizes. She put two fifteen-pound and two ten-pound weights on the brick platform. Originally, the platform weighed one hundred pounds, but she had extra bricks added to the platform so that the base weight was two hundred fifty. That made today's weight three hundred pounds. Talon put on the straps. "You know the drill Talon." Snow said. "You must pull the platform to the top of the hill. It's a bit heavier than usual..." Talon gave her a sarcastoc look. Snow smiled. "But I know you can do it. Ready....Set.....," Talon dug the back of his talons intothe ground. "GO!" He pulled with all his strength, muscles under the shirt bulging with the strain of the work. He didn't think that fifty pounds would make THIS much of a difference. Slowly, the platform started to move. He gave a good pull and started to run. The load gained speed and he pulled it up the hill, but once he almost lost it and barely kept it from pulling him to the base of the hill. At the top, with lungs heaving and muscles burning with the ache of being pushed to the limit, he un-strapped the platform from his back. Snow met him at the top and hugged his neck. "GREAT job, Talon! I knew you could do it! That fifty pounds was nothing for you!" She then had him do the Shoot and Dodge exercises, and Talon did extremely well in both of them. She pulled out a small bottle of Nuts Oil and had Talon drink it, to help his muscles heal from the strain of the Pulling and to relieve his fatigue. "That's all for today. Now go rest up. You need it." Talon went and lay down in the grass and closed his eyes. Next thing he knew, Snow was waking him up. "Talon, wake up and come into the house, please. I need to talk with you." She started towards the abode, and Talon noticed it was sunset. "Why is she being so serious? What did I do?" He slowly walked into the house. "Snow? Where are you?" He heard her from the dining room. "In here. In the dining room. Get in here. NOW." Eagle lowered his shoulders and drooped his wings. What exactly had he done? He walked into the room and looked up. He gasped with amazement. On the table was food. Lots of it. And in the middle of the table was a cake. In the middle of the cake were the words: HAPPY BIRTHDAY TALON! Snow walked up to him and gave him a peck on the cheek. "Happy birthday Talon!" She sat him down and they had dinner and talked about things like how nervous Talon was earlier when she told him to get in the house, and about upcoming tourneys, and about other things. After dinner, she cut the cake and gave him a large piece. "I also have something else for you." She handed him a box with a bow on it. Talon opened it and inside was Snow's favorite brown leather jacket. Embroidered on the back, in silver, was the image of a Tiger howling at the moon. "Snow, this is your favorite jacket. I can't accept it." Snow shook her head. "No. It's my gift to you. And besides having a wool collar, look inside." Talon looked and pinned to the inside of the jacket were the Courage and Valor badges he has won. She had pinned them into the jacket. "Snow, I,...Thank you!" Snow smiled. "I'm glad you're happy. Try it on!" Talon stood up and tried on the jacket. It was a tad small, but it was a good fit. "Thank you so much, Snow. I'll always wear it." Snow gave him a beaming smile. "You're welcome, Talon. But you should get to bed now. It's late and you must be tired." Talon yawned in response. He walked out to his stable and before drifting off to sleep, fingered the material of the jacket.

Talon was in a battle, a hard and drudging battle that seemed that it wouldn't stop. The Pixie he was fighting shot flame at him and he could smell the smoke....

Talon woke up. He could REALLY smell smoke! He charged through the doors of the stable and looked at the house. It was ablaze in fire! It came out of the ceiling and the windows. He scanned the area for Snow. He couldn't see her. "SNOW! WHERE ARE YOU?!" He ran near the house. "She couldn't still be... He ran inti the house. Flames licked at his clothes and his wings. "SNOW!" He ran room to room. "SNOW!" The ceiling caved in front of him. He jumped over the burning wood. "SNOW! WHERE ARE YOU?!" He heard a faint voice. "In....here...." He ran to her bedroom, the source of her voice seemed to come from there. He ram in and saw her pinned under a burning support beam. "*Cough*,*Cough*. Talon! *Cough!* Help me!" Talon bent down and paid no attention to the fire burning his hands as he srained to lift it. He threw it away from her and picked her up. "I'll get you out! Hold on!" He ran outside the house. Her breathing didn't sound good. He ran out and lay her down. Men came and started to douse the fire. She stuggled to breath. Her leg was twisted and broken. Her body was burned black in some places. "Talon...I..." Talon shook his head. "Don't talk. You'll be fine...." He felt a lump in his throat. Snow looked into his avian eyes. She was wheezing and stuggling to breathe. "I'm glad I was able to train you...and call you...friend...." She closed her eyes and breathe her last. "Snow....NOOOOO! SNOW! WAKE UP! OPEN YOUR EYES! SNOW! PLEASE BE JOKING!" She remained silent. She didn't move. She didn't breathe. His tainer, his best friend, was dead. He cave a piercing cry to the starlit sky, as if to call her back.

-- Celious (lionmage@hotmail.com), March 04, 2000


Hey Celious, I made that section you wanted.

-- Wheel Gator (MyersDCM@email.msn.com), March 04, 2000.

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