Princess of Amathar – Chapter 8 Excerpt

I felt a crushing, squishing sound, as the life and the insides were crushed out of the giant spider upon which I had landed. Jumping to my feet, I found the hulking arachnid looking much like a very small one looks, after it has been stepped upon. The many other spider beings of the compound stood completely still for what must have been several minutes, enough time for Norar Remontar and Malagor to clamber down from the web. They were standing by my side, as was our liberator Vvvv, when the Pell began once again to move. They did not move toward us, or attempt to attack, but instead simply spun around in a bizarre dance as if they had lost their minds. Vvvv seemed immune to this behavior.

“Now would be a great time to leave,” I said.

“We have fulfilled only half of our commitment,” said Norar Remontar, and drawing his sword, leapt toward the Pell whom I had earlier enjoyed spitting upon. As he raised his sword above his head, it began to provide a lovely pale illumination, and as he sliced through the body of the monster, the body hairs and flesh sizzled as if the weapon had been a hot brand. The Amatharian moved quickly away from the arachnids and began a trot toward the forest. Malagor and I followed.

“It’s all yours, Vvvv!” I called out, stopping to look back from the forest edge.

The Pell who had freed us positioned himself upon a large rock and began speaking to his fellows in the whistling language of their kind. Presumably he was presenting his credentials to be leader, or urging them to some sort of action. The other spiders listened for a moment, then with a swift and determined viciousness, set upon him with their stingers and their fangs. In scant seconds, the hapless Vvvv had been torn to pieces. Then the entire horde turned toward me.

I quickly took off after my companions who were several hundred feet ahead of me by that point.   It didn’t take me long, with my gravity enhanced muscles, to catch up with them. I quickly relayed the events going on behind us, and we all redoubled our efforts to get away from the area. I of course, had no trouble in trotting along at quite a good pace, and Norar Remontar seemed to be quite the long-distance runner, but my friend Malagor, though he was quite capable of attaining great speed for short distances, was clearly not built for the long haul. We were forced to stop every so often so that he could rest. As soon as we perceived our pursuers approaching, we would be off.

“Perhaps we should simply stop and fight,” suggested Norar Remontar, as we trotted along. “We are not asleep this time, and I feel quite certain that we could sell our lives dearly.”

“I am not quite sure that I am ready to sell mine at all,” I replied.

Just then however, the forest abruptly ended at the base of a tremendously high mountain. It was as if the ground had simply turned perpendicular to itself. There was no way to continue forward, so we cut to the left, and began to trace our way along the edifice. We jogged along at a renewed pace, but soon discovered that our detour had allowed our pursuers to reach us. Just to our left, several dozen of the Pell rushed out of the forest and toward us.

Norar Remontar and I drew our swords, Malagor pulled out his knife, and the three of us turned to face our foes. I could see from the corner of my right eye, the Amatharian’s sword begin to glow with its unearthly light. Foremost in my mind however, was the spider that was directly in front of me, and the two others who were attempting to sneak around to my left.

Rather than wait to be completely encircled, I made the first move. Jumping up and to the side, I dropped down sword point first on one of the two Pell to the side of me. I quickly rolled over the top of the creature’s body pulling the sword blade free as I did, and using the body as a shield from the other two who lunged forward. I swung the sword in a great arc and actually sliced through the bodies of both attackers. My appreciation of myself was short-lived however, for at that moment, I felt thick silky strands being sprayed upon me from behind.

I am sure that most can understand my feelings when I say that having once been encased in the cocoon of a giant spider-creature, I had lost any desire to be so encased again. I jumped straight up into the air, my intention being to land behind the attacker who was at the moment behind me. The silk threads now attached to my back made this impossible. Instead I flipped over backwards and landed on the back of the spider. He was a large one. I drove my sword down into its body so hard that it stuck into the ground beneath him.

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