Chapter 30 (Beyond return)
Ikiffar galloped down the hill towards Kkaj’s camp. How did I miss?
In the distance, the nightmare — or crocobear as her sweet Jekor had called it — roared. Had it already made it to Kkaj’s camp?
Rotten meat! She kicked her heels into the horse’s side like Jekor had showed her, and the beast ran faster.
Hooves pounded against stone and hard-packed sand from behind. Jekor moved up beside her. “What do you plan to do against a crocobear?”
“Save the map.” She tightened her grip on the reins.
“How? Crocobear scales are resistant to magic.”
Ikiffar blinked. “What?”
“It’s probably why your shot didn’t kill it.”
The muscles in her face drew taut, and she cringed. “Yeah … .”
Jekor patted her on the back. “It’s okay. We all make mistakes.” He winked. “Besides, not everyone can know as much as me.”
She forced herself to grin. How will he feel when he learns the truth? “You’re right.”
“So, what’s the plan?”
“Using that bastard as a distraction, we swoop in and snatch the map from him.”
“While I like the idea of you removing Kkaj from your revenge list—”
A quick grimace crossed Ikiffar’s face.
“— I don’t like the idea of leaving him and his two —”
Her gut clenched.
“— assassinates to die against a crocobear.”
She swallowed. “They —” her voice cracked. “— be able to survive.”
“Unlikely. Besides, do you know where they keep the map?”
The tiny flame in the center of Kkaj’s camp grew larger and larger as they as Ikiffar and Jekor pushed their horses hard.
“The assistant called Roffor has it.” And the other took a bullet for that bastard.
Bang! The gunshot echoed through the night, and her horse jerked to the left a bit. Was Kkaj fighting against the crocobear?
“Let’s hurry!” Ikiffar leaned forward and urged her horse to move faster.
Next: Chapter 31