Today's excerpt is from The Lunatic Queen by Michael Siciliano, part of the
Portals fantasy anthology.
We hope you enjoy today's tease!
The first one bounded out of the fog as we reached the edge of Grosnov. It looked like a long, sleek man. Naked and hairy, it ran on all fours and powered itself with elongated feet attached to bony hocks.
A frightened whimper escaped my mouth when I saw its expression.
Wolf fangs extended from a stubby jaw. Black lips turned upward near the face, giving the creature a perpetual cruel smirk. A mottled, bushy brow hovered over close-set, intelligent eyes. Eyes that glowed a faint icy blue.
“Tamara,” I called.
A moment later, she was by my side. We each held one of Yerik’s knives, their tips pointed at the creature.
It wove from side to side as it advanced on us.
“Where do you think you’re going,” the beast hissed in a soft masculine voice.
“It talks,” Tamara said. Fear and awe mingled in her voice.
“Yes,” he answered. “It does.”
“Leave us be,” I ordered, “or we’ll kill you.”
“Oh, I doubt that.” The volksa snapped its jaws at us playfully. “I think the Queen will reward me, if I drag your bodies to her. She likes us loyal, and I am so very loyal.”
He feinted right and leapt at me. I dodged back and slashed. My blade carved a thin line down his cheek.
Sharp nails raked at my chest, tearing a rent in my shirt.
Tamara jabbed at the creature’s hind quarters, gashing him in the rump. Black blood spattered her knife.
The volksa let out a keening wail and darted away. He may have looked like a wolf, but he wasn’t as fast as one. “Nasty girl,” he hissed at Tamara. He rose on hairy haunches, and placed a quivering palm on the wound. “I would have killed you, but now I think I’ll play with you instead.” He cackled at us, and I recoiled at the sight of his stiffened penis.
Out of the corner of my eye, I saw Tamara’s expression harden. “Come try,” she said.