[Keelin] heard the flapping of wings far before his shadow drew across the open ground. He hovered above her, growling for her to move before he crushed her. The circling trees creaked and moaned as they bent beneath his wings. This was not the first time she had made him land in an area already too small for him. If he could joke at her misfortune, she could smirk at his size. D’ruk’s claws crunched on the leaves as he tried unsuccessfully to land with grace, attempting to bring his wings in toward his body.
Keelin saw the dark shape move again and paused. A twig cracked and the air filled with a foreign, anxious shout. A dark blur streaked from behind another tree, and then stopped only feet from Keelin. It had been caught. She stared back at the first human she had ever seen.
The human stood at the ready with one foot back, balancing its broad and frozen stance. Its arms stretched out at eye level, holding a long, curved bow of wood, strung with a sharpened stick. Keelin considered it a weapon. The human’s skin appeared almost black, contrasted only by the frightened whites of its eyes. It had covered its lower half with something that otherwise would have made Keelin laugh, and revealed its bare chest without shame. This made the creature’s legs look soft, featureless, and weak.
This was a human. She had never actually seen a live one before, but there could be no mistake.
A deep growl rumbled behind her and D’ruk sent reddened hatred to her. ‘I’ll kill it…’
‘No. This is…’ She couldn’t quite find the words, but she didn’t need to explain. He growled again. The human shook its weapon and shouted louder. Keelin couldn’t understand the noises it made, nor why it shoved the weapon toward her. She hadn’t provoked it…yet.