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The Quest for Fire - Frozen Past - Chapter Eight

by felistia


Ice cold dread filled Zoltar’s body from horns to tail. What had they done to Felistia? Zoltar could feel the rage burning with inside him like a volcano about to explode. The Ice Talons must have ambushed Felistia as well.

It looked like she’d put up a better fight than him though, seeing that the massive dragoness had more than a few lashes on her snout, but it had cost Felistia dearly. She was hanging limp as a plant in a drought, her eyes shut and wings sagging. An ugly red gash streaked across her right flank adding to the smaller ones the Drilver had given her. It was deep and was bleeding badly. For a second Zoltar feared the worst, but then he realized that Felistia was still taking shallow breaths.

'She’s alive,’ Zoltar heaved a shaking sigh of relief and felt his tense muscles relax a bit, but deep inside he wanted to rip the Ice Talons limb from limb for hurting Felistia in such a way.

They flew for hours through the howling blizzard, the harsh snow sting Zoltar’s eyes and scales. Every now and then he would feel his captor adjust his grip, every time sending new spears of pain plunging into his shoulders.

How was he going to get out of this mess? His wings were bound to his sides and his jaw was clamped shut with scarcely enough room to speak.Even if he did manage to get his wings free somehow he was surrounded by a pack of Ice Talons; all trained soldiers. He’d never make it out on his own. Felistia was in no shape to fight and without her help he had no chance of finding his way out of this frozen landscape.

He glanced over at Felistia again. She was still out cold and the wound along her side was still leaking blood.

‘She needs help,’ Zoltar thought, cursing the fact that he hadn’t brought some herbs along with him. If he had some on him he’d be able to help her heal when he got a chance.

The Ice Talons were bond to throw them in prison as soon as they reached the heart of the Ice Talon Kingdom. At least if that happened he’d be able to tend to her wounds.

They’d probably be brought before the Ice Talon Queen though and be accused of trespassing. The very thought made his stomach churn like an acid lake.

He wasn’t sure what they’d charge Felistia with though. She was an outcast. How would the queen react to Felistia returning? Something like that had never happened before. Not that he knew of any instances anyway. What would the queen do to her? Whatever it was, it couldn’t be good.

Soon a new day arrived and the snow storm faded as the claws of a thin dawn broke over the white landscape. Spears of ice jutted out from the cracked ground, their tips as sharp as dragon fangs. The land seemed to be desolate at first, but after a little while Zoltar could make out the silver shapes of the wolf like Drilver dragons slinking across the tundra. Herds of woolly mammoths where dotted across the bleak land, their rumbling bellows echoing in the thin morning air. They seemed to cower and huddled closer together as the shadows of the pack of ice dragons passed over head.

Before long the land changed from the deserted plains of snow into sweeping mountains of sleek frozen rock. Caves covered the vertical cliffs, carved from mountain side by dragon claws. Ice Talons flew from one cave to another, trading fish for slabs of frozen meat. Dragonets played in the streets below, laughing as they chased one another through the soft blanket of snow.

Zoltar for a moment was hit by a wave of sadness as he passed overhead. It all looked so similar to the way the Shadow Lands had once been before the eruption.

The thought was fleeting however as he caught sight of the Ice Talon Palace ahead; a towering peak of solid ice looming over the land. A cavernous opening yawned from the side of the mountain like the jaws of a hungry beast. Heavy wooden doors hung from its sides, ready to close and trap all who entered. Small openings scarred the peak, serving what Zoltar could only imagine as windows, to let the harsh tundra sun into the depths of the palace.

As they neared, a lone Ice Talon emerged from the cliff side beside them, her silver armour glinting like fangs as she flew towards Zoltar and the group of Ice Talons.

The Ice Talon carrying Zoltar halted, barking a command to stop as he hovered, his powerful wings beating the air in the effort to stay aloft.

“Greetings, General, “He said to the lead Ice Talon as she approached.

“At ease Akull,” The older dragoness said, staring with cold eyes at Zoltar and Felistia, “What are these?”

“We found them inside the border. The Ice Talon was with the Shadow Talon. She has the mark, Veartar. She’s an outcast.”

Veartar nodded, “Put them below. I’ll let the Queen know.” She said, turning in the air and swooping back towards the mountain. She soon disappeared into one of the small cave-like holes in the mountain side.

Zoltar cringed with pain as his captor dipped into a shallow dive towards the palace opening, the movement causing Akull’s claws to sink deeper into his shoulders.

As he landed, Akull let go of his iron grip on Zoltar, sending him tumbling to the ground. He landed with a muffled thump as he hit the frozen ground outside the palace opening, the shock of the impact knocking the breath right out of him.

Zoltar lay there gasping for breath for a few seconds before Felistia dropped next to him, causing her to groan in pain as she smacked onto the hard ice. She slowly opened her eyes, blinking as the harsh sunlight momentarily blind her.

She looked around her with wild eyes, a flash of terror crossing her face when she saw the soldiers.

Breathing hard from the effort, Felistia gingerly got to her feet. Zoltar was afraid that she was going to fall back down and hobbled over as fast as his chains would let him to steady her wavering body.

“It’s okay. I can stand on my own,” Felistia grimaced as the soldiers approached them, the cruel, metal chains hanging from their necks clanging together like icicles.

“Come you two,” Akull growled, as he quickly loosened their chains enough for them to walk and attached a new chains to their muzzles to lead them.

Felistia shot Zoltar a frightened look as they were led across a frozen walk way into the palace, the heavy doors slamming shut behind them with a threatening boom.


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Thu Jun 18, 2020 8:11 am
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HarryHardy wrote a review...



Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening/Night(whichever one it is in your part of the world),

Halfway point reached. (Yaay me!!!)

First Impression: Nice to see how the ice talons live. Neat little glimpse of that. And them getting frogmarched to meet the queen. Theorizing commences with renewed vigor.

It looked like she’d put up a better fight than him though, seeing that the massive dragoness had more than a few lashes on her snout, but it had cost Felistia dearly. She was hanging limp as a plant in a drought, her eyes shut and wings sagging. An ugly red gash streaked across her right flank adding to the smaller ones the Drilver had given her. It was deep and was bleeding badly. For a second Zoltar feared the worst, but then he realized that Felistia was still taking shallow breaths.


Considering she was injured she must be a really good fighter to damage her captor. That's interesting now isn't it?

'She’s alive,’ Zoltar heaved a shaking sigh of relief and felt his tense muscles relax a bit, but deep inside he wanted to rip the Ice Talons limb from limb for hurting Felistia in such a way.


I like to see how he is actually thinking of her more than his own predicament.

‘She needs help,’ Zoltar thought, cursing the fact that he hadn’t brought some herbs along with him. If he had some on him he’d be able to help her heal when he got a chance.


Small point but would the herbs even work in these icy conditions. Seems like the would've frozen over.

At least if that happened he’d be able to tend to her wounds.


Doesn't seem like he could do anything about her wounds at this point.

The land seemed to be desolate at first, but after a little while Zoltar could make out the silver shapes of the wolf like Drilver dragons slinking across the tundra. Herds of woolly mammoths where dotted across the bleak land, their rumbling bellows echoing in the thin morning air. They seemed to cower and huddled closer together as the shadows of the pack of ice dragons passed over head.


So the drilvers don't attack them or are they just terrified of the guards. Also the queen's personal guard doesn't sound like the ones who'd be doing border patrol. Or are they only type of guards?

Before long the land changed from the deserted plains of snow into sweeping mountains of sleek frozen rock. Caves covered the vertical cliffs, carved from mountain side by dragon claws. Ice Talons flew from one cave to another, trading fish for slabs of frozen meat. Dragonets played in the streets below, laughing as they chased one another through the soft blanket of snow.


Lovely little snapshot. Quick look into the life of these dragons.

Zoltar for a moment was hit by a wave of sadness as he passed overhead. It all looked so similar to the way the Shadow Lands had once been before the eruption.


Nice little mention of this.

As he landed, Akull let go of his iron grip on Zoltar, sending him tumbling to the ground. He landed with a muffled thump as he hit the frozen ground outside the palace opening, the shock of the impact knocking the breath right out of him.


Shows that Ice Talons really hate trespassers.

"Come you two,” Akull growled, as he quickly loosened their chains enough for them to walk and attached a new chains to their muzzles to lead them.


That letter should be chopped.

Felistia shot Zoltar a frightened look as they were led across a frozen walk way into the palace, the heavy doors slamming shut behind them with a threatening boom.


And time for some prison time by the looks of it.

Okay that's it for my first leg of Day 3 of the reviewathon.

Overall: Nice subtle depiction of how the Ice Talons function. They seem very similar to the Shadow talons. And looks like we're in deep trouble now.

Alright it is killing me to have to leave but I have to take a break. I will be back to finish the other half of the reviews.

As always take what you think will help and forget the rest.

Stay Safe
Harry




felistia says...


Thank you for another review. Look forward to when you get back. :D



HarryHardy says...


Your Welcome!!
I'll be back ASAP!!



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Mon Jun 01, 2020 9:25 pm
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JabberHut wrote a review...



HOW I HAVE MISSED THESE DRAGONS

I love that Zoltar shows a TON of concern for Felistia. It's definitely much needed after the rocky start in their relationship for this novel and almost a relief really, plus it just shows character -- he's far more concerned about her than he is about himself.

I do think it's a bit silly for him to go so far as to say that he could save her if he only had some herbs. That's an unrealistic scenario (unlses he's ONLY referring to the Drilver wounds) and I don't think it entirely works for him since he's never been one to beat himself up so unrealistically bad (i.e., he never showed that kind of general anxiety). The fact is, if he had herbs right now, the ice talons would certainly never allow him to heal her -- if they did, that would reveal far too much to Zoltar about how the ice talons think of Felistia. He'd never get a chance to heal her unless they managed an escape, and the two of them would never be able to escape considering the predicament they're currently in. SO ZOLTAR, SHHHHHHHHHHHHH IT'S OKAY IT'S NOT YOUR FAULT

Does Zoltar really know that an outcast has NEVER returned to their home tribe? Maybe it's possible if they were to study the political and military history for every significant dragon tribe (and if he had a good memory of said studies).

I'm so happy you included a brief moment of sadness for Zoltar watching the everyday life of ice talon civilians. That's absolutely 100% real and gosh, the poor thing has been through so much heartbreak.

XD Felistia doesn't wake up until she's thrown into the prison. She's endured blizzard conditions and another dragon's talons digging into her skin, but it's being tossed onto the ground that finally gently wakes her out of her deep slumber!

Also how lucky they're in the same prison cell!! I was totally convinced they'd be in separate cells. Though they weren't there for long before being escorted to the queen (presumably) anyway. XD It was probably a needless trip if it was going to happen so soon.

Despite some of the questionable logic, I think this was an awesome chapter. We got a really good glimpse of the Ice Talon kingdom, and it was very easy to picture. You once again nailed the description like a pro. It's just absolutely beautiful -- even the little scene with the younglings was just precious! We're also moving right along into meeting the Queen, and I'm basically just excited to get some answers 'cause I feel like she's going to enlighten us a bit, however vague that might be.




felistia says...


Thank you so much for the review. :D

The next few chapters I really need an opinion on as a lot of plot points are coming together and so having you question some parts really helps be make the chapter better.

I'm so excited for you to meet the queen. :D




Who wants to become a writer? And why? Because it’s the answer to everything. It’s the streaming reason for living. To note, to pin down, to build up, to create, to be astonished at nothing, to cherish the oddities, to let nothing go down the drain, to make something, to make a great flower out of life, even if it’s a cactus.
— Enid Bagnold