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Part 12: The Beast of the Forest
It is all action as Jimmy and Leo must escape the Beasts that are chasing them...
Welcome! The Beast of the Forest continues!
Here’s a link way back to Part One in The Beast of the Forest:
And here’s is a link to the previous part in the series:
I hope you enjoy today’s story!
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Jimmy looked back as the young sparkling Beasts exploded out of the water in a twinkly flurry of movement. Their lizard bodies were all muscle as they twisted and contorted. For a brief moment they were flying through the air.
They each hit the shore and continued their charge.
Leo gave Jimmy’s arm a sharp pull.
“Focus where you’re going,” he snapped angrily.
They bolted into the forest, dodging trees and leaping over treacherous roots.
Leo could see shadowy blurs of movement ahead of him as the fragmented bandits scampered away, some going off one way, some going off another way.
He looked back and the Beasts were still a decent distance behind them. They were fast though — viciously fast.
As Leo watched them, the two Beasts split up, one running right and the other running left. Suddenly, they had both disappeared among the trees.
Jimmy was looking back too.
“Where did they go?” he asked.
“I said focus where you’re going,” said Leo.
They kept on sprinting through the forest. Leo was constantly looking around, scanning for the Beasts. There were rustles of movement to his left and right as the lizards from the creek were seemingly getting into position to flank them.
Leo could see the Beasts rushing ahead on either side. He was bracing for the moment they pounced.
The moment Leo saw one of the Beasts make their move, he immediately grabbed Jimmy’s arm and stopped right where he was.
There was a big tree just nearby. Leo dragged Jimmy over to it and got him to stand by the trunk. Leo then stood in front of him, scanning the forest, shielding Jimmy.
A painful tension filled the air in the forest as Jimmy and Leo each waited helplessly for whatever it was that was going to come next.
They searched the forest for signs of movement. The silhouettes of some of the bandits could just be made out sprinting away in the far distance.
Everything went quiet. The only sounds Jimmy and Leo could hear was their own tired heavy breathing.
As Leo desperately scanned the forest, he caught a low fizz of movement on his right among the trunks of the trees — one of the Beasts scurrying around them. On the other side he saw another low twitch of action. The two Beasts were circling them.
One of the lizards launched out of the thick of the forest and landed in the small opening in front of the tree where Jimmy and Leo had set themselves up.
As it landed it let out a vicious snake-like hiss.
Jimmy instinctively shuffled backwards but was immediately met by the trunk of the tree just behind him.
The Beast stood ten feet away in a prowling, ready-to-pounce stance. It was about the length of a grown man. It looked like it was made out of nothing but muscle.
As it stood there, its tail slid behind it from side to side. Every few seconds, the Beast would lick its lips with its long whip-like blue tongue. Jimmy was reminded of the rumours of the power of the Beast’s tongue to pluck boar-sized prey from thin air just as easily as a frog’s tongue plucks a fly.
Leo was in a staredown with the Beast in front of him.
The Beast shifted slightly on its feet. Leo made his hands into fists and dug his heels into the ground, ready for anything.
The Beast took a sudden step forward. It was charging itself up to make a lunge, but Leo quickly interrupted the process. He stepped forward and lifted his arms into the air to make himself as big as possible. At the same time he let out a mighty roar, “Rrrraaaaaargh!!!!”
The Beast immediately pulled back a few steps, then returned to its prowling stance.
Leo released a follow-up, “Rrraaargh!!”
The young Beast responded with an agitated hiss.
The other Beast then erupted out of the forest and pounced at Leo from the side.
Leo turned and threw his arms into the air, “Rrrrraaaaaaaaaargh!!!!”
The second Beast lost its nerve just like the first one and scampered backwards in retreat.
The two of the young lizards were side by side now in the opening just in front of Jimmy and Leo.
Leo had his chest pumped out, trying to look as big and tough as possible.
The two Beasts remained there ready to go, each hissing and licking their lips. They were digging up little clumps of dirt with their claws and kicking it behind them, trying to intimidate the humans. They looked like they were going to make their move any second.
Jimmy stepped forward from the tree. Standing beside Leo, Jimmy conjured up all of the fight he could muster and made his hands into fists. Leo wanted to push Jimmy backwards out of the way, but he knew he had to keep his focus on the Beasts. One slip of concentration and they might pounce.
It looked like the Beasts were just about to charge when a sudden banging and clanging crashed into the small opening like an enormous wave. It was one of the bandits! Henry! In he ran, smacking a saucepan with a wooden spoon above his head like it was a drum.
Leo seized the opportunity and roared as loudly as he could and sprinted at the Beasts as well. Jimmy joined in too, screaming as he charged.
The lizards were caught off guard by the movement and noise as the tall human figures closed in on them.
The two Beasts took a couple of uneasy steps backwards. As the screaming humans barrelled towards them, the Beasts’ nerves then buckled completely and they went into a full on retreat, bolting through the forest back towards the water.
Henry, Leo, and Jimmy continued their charge until the lizards were just scampering little shadows in the distance. They then stood silent in the opening of the forest as they each caught their breath.
“Thank you,” said Leo finally.
“No time for ‘thank yous’,” said Henry. “We need to go.”
Thanks for reading!
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