“You cannot win this,” she hissed.
“I already have,” Gustav replied with a laugh. “This kingdom is MINE!”
Gustav advanced, a sword in each hand, backing them farther into the dragons’ den. Obsi may have been a terrified girl of six, but she had her wits about her. She clung to Ash’s skirt with both hands and looked around for something to use as a distraction. The weapons that usually hung on the walls were currently being used in the multiple battles for control that waged throughout the lands. The stalls for Skarr, Ebon and Nightshade were vacant, but Gunnar, Gustav’s pet, was still there.
Gustav lunged at Ash, knocking her off balance and away from Obsi. He grabbed his niece and with an evil grin opened Gunnar’s stall and locked her inside.
“Feeding time, boy!” Gustav shouted gleefully. Ash screamed as she jumped to her feet and re-engaged Gustav in battle.
Obsi wanted to kick the stall door and scream, but she knew that was futile. She had to trust that Ash would be victorious and get her out of the stall before the dragon behind her did his masters’ bidding. She turned around slowly to face Gunnar. He had his head cocked to one side, looking very non-threateningly at her. She cautiously approached him and gently touched one of his horns.
“If you don’t eat that girl I will feed you to the others!” Gustav roared.
Gunnar’s eyes darted back and forth from the door to Obsi, showing his uncertainty.
“You won’t eat me, will you boy?” Obsi asked, trying to mask the fear in her voice. “You’re a good boy aren’t you?” Gunnar lowered his head and she gently began to pet his massive head.
Ash screamed again. Gustav roared back. Gunnar reared up and used one massive paw to push Obsi aside as he lunged forward and broke the stall door. Gustav screamed for him but the dragon did not heed, heading straight for the exit and exploded into the sky to freedom.
Obsi carefully exited the stall to see Ash kneeling over Gustav. She had one knee on his groin and the tip of her sword at his throat.
“You are finished,” she said through clenched teeth as she bent down to place her dagger on his throat as well.
“Never,” he said, spitting blood at her. “I will haunt your ass for the rest of your life, you bi…”
Ash shoved her dagger through the bottom of Gustav’s jaw and into his brain. Obsi watched the life wither in her uncle’s eyes until it was gone. Ash looked up at her.
“It’s over,” she said as she stood and sheathed her weapons. Ash took Obsi’s hand and lead her out of the den.
Obsi awoke slowly and opened her eyes. The memory of her uncles’ death had burned itself into her and over the years she’d relived in often in her dreams. It had been over a year since she’d had that dream, and she silently cursed the Blackbloods for showing up and unearthing it.
As she pushed back the covers, she heard a commotion outside the window. She walked over to see Cavaleris on the dragon perch, facing away from her tower. He was watching something, and she squinted to try and see what it was through the frosty window. It was a dragon, and as it got closer Cavaleris took off to chase it away, but not before Obsi realized it was Gunnar.