Ever of Tree Stump – Forest Warrior
A Women’s Island Teaser
“You can’t just leave. You’ll never find the next stop without a guide.” Ever has lost control of the situation.
Mercy takes a threatening step toward the forest woman. “We made it here just fine without one. If we don’t find the place of refuge, we will just survive on our own.”
Stumbling backwards, Ever looks into the treetops for support and sure enough, more women drop to the ground. Luke screams as one of them grasps his arm and tries to take him away from his sister. Christian snatches the woman’s arm and bites down hard on her wrist forcing the woman to release her brother. They run to their mother and are too terrified to protest when Mercy lifts both of them and begins to run into the trees away from the forest women. Not knowing her way around and the added weight of her children are thoughts Mercy pushes to the back of her mind. She knows the chance of them getting away are slim to none. But if anyone wants to take her children, they will have to kill her first.
Christian and Luke hold on tightly to their mother, careful not to choke her or block her vision and trying their best to not be dead weights in her arms. Fear is wrapped around them so strongly they can’t even begin to image what might happen in the moments to come, they can’t even hope. All they can do is think of their mother, running for all of their lives, and the creepy dark forest, that no longer seems beautiful.
The forest women take to the trees, leaping great distances and covering much more distance than the vegetation allows on the ground. Still, Mercy’s speed and agile movements surprise them. She reminds Ever of a deer running from a hunter.
“Ever!” bellows one of the forest women leaping to a branch below her. “Circle around them. We will close them in and attack on the ground.”
“Don’t attack!” Ever shouts.
“They are a threat. We have to.”
Before she can protest the forest woman is gone. “Pine needles!” she chides herself and makes her way to her part of the circle as quickly as she can. When she gets there the forest women are still moving, trying to maintain the circle while keeping up with Mercy and her children.
“Now!” roars one of the women.
Ever drops to the floor and runs straight for Mercy. She gets there just before one of the others pulls a dagger from its sheathe. “Stop!” she howls. The blade slides cleanly into Ever’s arm.
Ⓒ COPYRIGHT 2012, 2013 ASHLEYNICOLE BOOKS
First Round of edits by Cindy Davis
Art by Black Raven Studios