Wind cut through the leafy hide of the Greenroot Janustraps, the living plant monsters screeching in agony. Lymph stood over the fallen form of his beloved, casting spell after spell of merciless wind. Even when his magic ran dry, he continued to scream.
Leth was dead.
It had been going just fine until they encountered a Coral Basilisk. It was late, the day had been long, and Matous–Winse and Betes’ surviving son from their second nest–had gotten just a bit too cocky. They had hit just over thirty battles without much worry.
Lymph didn’t even realize Matous was dead until Leth had screamed. He had been too focused on gathering magic for his next attack.
They survived the match…but Matous was too far gone to be rescued.
It was while he and Leth had been arguing about what to do that the two plant monsters appeared. Without warning, they struck hard and fast. Lymph defended as best he could, blood dampening his fur and scales.
Two bursts of leafy magic tore Leth away from him forever.
It had been too fast for him to defend against. Leth bled out so quickly that there was no time to try and choke a Potion down her throat. The light left her eyes before Lymph could even get to her, to say he loved her, to goodbye…
Lymph had never witnessed death happening before him in the wilderness. In the nests, yes. He’d lost too many children to the plague, but this? This was different.
What would Rabi think? And Geri! Poor young, naïve Geri! He was too young to be without his mother!
This is what Winse is going through, Lymph realized.
Yesterday had seen the deaths of four hatchlings, two from his own nest and two from his son’s. Two more, Chocomint and Tussis, perished in Scorched Forest thanks to Winse’s reckless decision.
And now Matous and Leth were dead too.
Eight. That was eight dead. Over two days.
The Greenroot Janustraps lay dead, torn apart by Lymph’s Zephyr Bolt magic. Leth’s body was still warm. Matous’ too.
But Lymph felt as cold as ice. Even with the warm blood running over his scales as he hauled the deceased onto his back for the journey home, he felt like a glacier. A blizzard roared in his ears, his mind, his heart.
The love of his life was dead.
And there was nothing he could do to bring her back.