Zoltar woke with a yell, his whole scaly body trembling in fright. He looked around with wild eyes, expecting to see the frozen walls of an ice talon prison, but instead he saw Emerald and Shiraku curled up like cats, their sides steadily rising and falling with each breath. Felistia was a few steps away from them, looking towards the far off snows whirling in the south as her scales gleamed porcelain white in the shimmering light of the two moons.
Zoltar took a few deep breaths, trying to calm his shaken nerves. It had all been a dream; a really vivid dream, but what had scared him was what had happened. Why had Felistia betrayed him like that. He knew that it had just been a nightmare, but it still had to have come from somewhere. Sure Felistia had been acting strangely, but that still didn't mean she was going to hand him over to the ice talons. Was she? Zoltar swallowed hard. Maybe his fears where real and she was hiding something from him. It wasn't impossible. He glanced back at Felistia, she was staring at him with her golden orb like eyes. As if sensing something was wrong, she got up and started to pad silently towards him like panther would a deer.
Zoltar was surprised to feel his heart rate starting to accelerate and cold sweat starting to break out from between his scales. ‘It was just a dream,’ he assured himself as Felistia walked over, but he still couldn’t stop shaking.
“Another bad dream?” Felistia asked in an almost too sweet voice as her dark shadow fell over Zoltar’s face.
“Y-y-yes,” Zoltar stammered, hastily getting up, so that her snake like shadow no longer loomed over him. Was it just him or did she seem larger in the pale moonlight?
“What was it about this time?” Felistia asked, leaning her snout in closer so that her golden eyes stared straight into Zoltar’s amethyst ones.
“N-n-nothing,” Zoltar stammered, jerking his head away from her hypnotic stare. His head was swimming and he had to close his eyes for a second to stop the ground from spinning. Every nerve in his body was pumping with adrenalin and his mind was screaming at him to run.
“What’s wrong Zoltar? Why are you being short with me?” Felistia enquired in an innocent voice as she sat down and proceeded to try and wrap her silver wing around his back.
“Nothing’s wrong. I-I-I just need some alone time!” Zoltar burst out, finely giving into his urge to bolt as he extended his wings and lifted into the frigid night air. He quickly left Felistia behind as he climbed towards the star light.
‘What was that?’ Zoltar yelled to himself after he was a good few miles away from Felistia. He kept trying to convince himself that she wasn't going to hurt him and that he should stop putting her on edge, but he just couldn't do it. The image of her shining blood hungry eyes still haunted him. The pain of her claws slicing against his scales and the screaming wind in his face. It just seemed to real to shake it off. But then she still hadn't really done anything wrong.
Zoltar rubbed his snout, exasperated. This was a classic case of him over reacting and scaring away his friends. He'd done this in the shadow lands and now he was doing it again. Honestly, you would have thought he'd have learned by now.
Dipping in a large arc, Zoltar dived towards the glittering lake below. Maybe staring out into nothingness would help calm his nerves, after all he had done this many an hour in the shadow lands when he was feeling scared, gazing up at the never ending ash clouds spewing from the volcano.
Zoltar gently landed, the frost covered grass surrounding the lake cracking under his paws like glass. He sat down on the edge of the bank, his tail wrapped around his legs as he stared out over the frozen water. The star light shimmered over the imperfect sheet of ice and freezing cold winds howled over its surface.
The howling wind reminded Zoltar of the Howler dragons wailing cries back in the forbidden hills. A tingle of fear ran down Zoltar's spine, causing him to shiver uncontrollably for a few seconds. He had to succeed in this mission. His life and the shadow talons lives depended upon it. Who knew what would happen if he didn't get the Ruby of Fire for the howler dragons. He was sure they wouldn't just give him a friendly pat on the back and leave it.
Doubt slowly seeped into his mind like rats searching for food. He had less than six months to go and he wasn't even halfway there. He still had to get another four things for the Riconra before he could even start thinking about getting the Ruby. Getting the wisp talon scale had been hard, but it was going to be nothing compered to stealing the ice talon queen's diamond. It would have been difficult with the four dragons, but to make it even worse Emerald and Shiraku weren't going to be able to come. They couldn't breathe fire and therefor would freeze with in hours of reaching the ice talon kingdom. The only one that could go with him was...Zoltar shivered at the thought; Felistia.
A ripple of fear coursed through Zoltar's veins, setting all his senses on a blades edge, but he shrugged it off stubbornly. Whether he liked it or not, Felistia was going to want to come with him to the ice talon kingdom. It was her home after all. He'd better go and make up with Felistia for his strange behaviour. It wouldn't help if she was freaked out by him on the way to the ice talon kingdom. Sighing, Zoltar leapt into the air and sped back towards where the others were sleeping.