Chapter 7 – Golden Angels
“See that horse out yonder?” he asked.
Aurora, grandfather, and the stable boy all turned to look through the back door. A black stallion had wandered up and begun drinking from the water trough. A loud explosion spooked the heebie-jeebies out of all three of them, causing them to flinch and cover their ears. Aurora instinctively dropped back, like a rock, to the ground.
The horse shrieked with a sound she had never heard before. As she scrambled to her feet, Aurora could see it kneeling on his forelegs, gasping for air. It keeled over to the side and struggled in the throes of death. Hot tears of anger filled her eyes.
“This here is called a gun. I think you understand what it’s capable of. Now, I take no pleasure in killing a beautiful animal like that, but I just needed to demonstrate its power for you. Got it, old man. Because if you don’t tell me where that little artifact is, well, let’s just say I won’t be wasting this weapon on shooting any more horses.”
Aurora lifted her hand to wipe the tears away from her eyes, and her hand brushed against her pocket. It was empty.
She glanced down and noticed that it had fallen out of her pocket when she dropped to the ground. Fortunately, it was brown like the hay that covered the ground and blended in so that it wasn’t very visible.
“You already tried to kill me before,” Grandfather said coldly. “I’m not afraid of you or death.”
The girl took another step back from her grandfather. Not out of fear, but using it as an excuse to push hay with the back of her foot to cover the object. She glanced over at the stable boy. He noticed what she was doing and looked up to meet her gaze. Aurora gave him a warning glare, but she was afraid he might tell the men what he had seen out of fear.
The man with the gun smiled wickedly. “Oh, I didn’t say I was going to kill you. We can use it to blow your leg off. It causes a lot of pain. You’re better off just telling us where it is.”
Then he added as an afterthought, “Or we could just I shoot that little girl there.” He swung the thing he called a gun in her direction.
Instinctively, Aurora threw her hands over her head and dropped to the ground. She heard a crack and saw a flash of light before everything went black in front of her eyes.
“This is it. I’ve gone and died,” Aurora thought to herself.
The girl lay there quietly, wondering what would happen next. Would an angel descend from heaven and pull her spirit from her body? A demon, maybe? She shuddered. A bird chirped in the distance.
This was taking too long. If she were dying, wouldn’t she lose consciousness? Everything should be fading away around her.
Aurora opened her eyes to see a golden bird soaring far above her. Others joined it in its lazy flight around her in the sky above. The sunlight reflected off them in a fiery shimmer. She lifted her head and looked around the small clearing surrounded by large, beautiful green trees. All of them filled with the same fiery golden fowl.
She stood to her feet. Rocks and boulders encircled her about ten paces out. One by one the golden birds from the trees began to flit toward her and land on the stones. Others circled down from above, but instead of landing on the rocks, they circled her.
As she looked closer, Aurora noticed their feathers looked like flames of fire. They circled in, closer and closer. The pack of winged creatures encircling her grew thicker and brighter until Aurora felt as if she were suffocating.
“Was this what death felt like? Were these her angels?” Aurora thought as they pressed in against her, their wingtips brushing against her skin.
Continue Reading Chapter 8 – Horse Attack >>>