24 Snake Attack
Finn felt a strange sense of peace. It was a similar to how he felt on his deathbed in his former life. An acceptance of death. That didnt mean, though, that he didn't feel regret.
It's a shame, this world was so interesting... Finn dodged to the right, forcing the bear to slow down in order to avoid tumbling once again, the action rocking the earth beneath his feet.
To Finn's dismay however, the bear was beginning to adapt to his sudden changes in direction.
Finn, being smaller, was much more agile than the massive bear, but it more then made up for it in raw speed, strength, and endurance.
Although, right now Finn was noticeably faster than before.
Bryn... Finn felt a pang of sadness for the boy. He prayed that he would make it home safely, although he would definitely be devastated.
He hadn't and would never consider the boy a burden, but less weight always meant more speed. He had to admit that without Bryn and a saddle on his back, he felt far less strain on his muscles.
But regardless, it made no difference, Finn still couldn't absorb energy when running at this speed. The few times he attempted to do so, the energy dissipated before he could gather it in his core.
Believe it or not, it took a lot more concentration when being chased by a giant mountain of a bear that was intent on ripping your guts open.
Each time the bear got close, Bryn would quickly change direction, using the trees as momentary cover to disguise his intentions. This led to the bear wasting time trying to adjust its course.
Unfortunately, this trick could only work so many times before the bear got wise. It took less time for the bear to course correct Finn's dodges.
Combine that with how Finn was nearing muscle failure, the end result was easily decipherable.
Burning pain clouded Finn's thoughts, both from his legs and his lungs. He was relying more and more on instinct at this point, any higher brain functions limited by exhaustion.
I... cant... continue... Finn was running on fumes. All of the sudden, his eyes were greeted by bright sunlight. He had been chased into a clearing, and not just any clearing...
This is... how?
Somehow, Finn had managed to make it right back to the open area where the chase began.
The same place where he had been born.
After all the running and dodging, he had only succeeded in going in a big circle.
Normally, the bright sunlight would be welcome to Finn, but in this case it was a death sentence. With no trees around, there was nowhere to hide.
The bear let out a might roar of pent up frustration. It had been waiting for a chance like this.
Picking up speed, it caught right up to the fleeing lizard, chomping down on it's already bloodied tail once again. The shriek of pain Finn uncontrollably let loose fueled the bear's bloodlust.
Using the grip the bear had on his tail, the bear came to a sudden halt, forcing Finn to do the same. Without warning, Finn felt his claws leave the earth.
With a mighty heave of its body, the bear threw Finn with great force using his own tail as the sling.
Excruciating pain radiated throughout his body as he felt his tail nearly rip off, and for a moment, Finn felt weightless.
Then his back collided with the trunck of a tree.
Finn heard and felt a crunch as his rear limbs bent at an unnatural angle. His back had been broken.
I can't move my legs... Finn was done. He had tried his best, but there was no escaping the looming shadow of death. He watched as the ironhide bear causally walked up to its meal, jaws dripping with saliva.
Even now, its body was protected by that green energy. It was being cautious in case Finn had any more tricks left.
Only, Finn knew he had shown all his cards already. There was no ace in the hole.
Fear coursed through Finn's veins. Understanding one's inevitable demise didn't make it any less terrifying. He wasn't very keen on knowing the feeling of being eaten.
Hopefully, it makes it quick... Finn closed his his eyes as dark thoughts clouded his mind, unwilling to watch as the gruesome end came.
Just as Finn could feel its hot breath closing in around his neck, the bear quickly retracted its jaws. It began growling intensely as it gazed off into the distance.
Finn heard several whistling sounds reminiscent of a car zooming past at high speed. Daring to open one of his eyes, Finn saw bluish objects moving too fast to see impact the side of the ironhide bear.
The bear recoiled in pain, each spot where the blue projectiles hit revealing large gashes, which began oozing copious amounts of blood.
What in the world... Both Finn's eyes were now wide open in shock. Somehow, the massive bear that treated my attacks like a sunburn, was seriously wounded by a single sneak attack.
The green energy surrounding the bear's body appeared seemingly useless against these attacks.
How unfair... Finn wondered why his own attacks were so ineffective by comparison. If he wasn't so hurt, Finn would have used this opportunity to run away. Alas, all he could do was pray that whoever was attacking the bear now ignored his existence.
Despite the pain, Finn adjusted his head to see where the strikes came from.
... Now this is just getting ridiculous.
An unbelievably massive snake was slowly slithering out of the woods. Its long and sleek body that seemingly had no end curled around several trees like a cord. Its scales had striped patterns, alternating between different shades of blue.
As it entered the clearing, Finn's view improved, and it only made him shudder in fear. The snake's beautiful blue body was almost as thick around as a mid sized car, which could only lead to one to making preposterous deductions about its length.
By comparison of scale, the ironhide bear was like a jumbo polar bear on steroids. This snake however...
If the largest snakes on earth were like twigs, this snake was a damn tree!
Visually, the bear was actually much taller than the snake, but by volume and weight, the snake most likely dwarfed the bear by many tons.
There was no time wasted. The larger than life beasts circled each other, the bear's growls and the snake's hisses combined together like a serenade of impending war.
They stood off for a moment, neither willing to back down, and immediately commenced a life or death brawl, their fighting adding more destruction to the already devastated clearing.
Finn lacked the current mental capacity to process what was happening. It was like watching titans clash, the sheer scale of the fight was almost impossible to comprehend.
Gradually, Finn's eyes closed back down to a bored expression. Nothing mattered anyway. Whoever won would still kill him. In this case, there wasn't a "lesser of two evils" option.
Since I have nothing better to do, might as well ease this pain... Finn started gathering energy, pleased that he could now focus it into his core with no problems.
His back being broken, Finn was as still as a rock as sunlight flowed into his body.
Successfully condensed in his core, the energy flowed through his body, rejuvenating his worn muscles and alleviating the pain from his injuries.
In fact, Finn could tell that if he was given enough time, his body could make a complete recovery. Unfortunately, there was no way he would be given the chance.
The battle between the unknown snake type magical beast and the ironhide bear was reaching a climax.
Although the ironhide bear had an incredibly tough hide when reinforced with its earth energy, the snake's windblades were able to leave serious injuries every volley.
It was clear the the snakes initial sneak attack was paying off, the bear slowly losing strength as they collided together. Riddled with numerous injuries, the bear was losing enough blood to fill a small pool.
The snake was much better off, its massive oily scales made it difficult for the bear to find purchase with its claws or fangs, but the bear did manage to inflict several wounds itself.
However, a gash deep enough to cut Finn in half was likely only a minor flesh wound to such a large reptile.
Eventually, the snake began to create distance with the bear, slithering away and redirecting its body whenever the bear advanced, attacking whenever it saw an opening. It had wounded the bear enough, now it was biding its time waiting for the bear to bleed out.
How intelligent... Finn watched, impressed. If he was being honest, he would rather be eaten by a snake than a bear.
Swallowed in one bite would be much less horrible than being ripped to pieces... Finn's thoughts could only be described as depressing.
Sensing its defeat approaching, a dazzling bright green light illuminated off the bear's back as it rose up and slammed the ground with tremendous force. A massive amount of green energy poured like a stream down its legs into the earth where it stomped.
Finn was forced to stop his absorption as he felt the earth begin to shake, concerned about his immediate surroundings.
The snake looked around warily, understanding something bad was happening but unable to pinpoint what it was.
Just then, a large earthen spike erupted from the ground like a spear, nearly impaling the snake clean through. With its quick reflexes, it was able to dodge in time, but not without sustaining a critical wound.
That earth spike managed to cut almost a third of the way through a part of the snake's width, leaving behind a massive bleeding hole.
Finn watched in awe. The earth... it's still shaking! Finn realized that wasn't the end of it. More earth spikes started erupting around the vicinity of where the ironhide bear stomped.
Deadly spears of earth popped up left and right, forcing the snake to begin evasive maneuvers. Its skin lit up with a blue aura, and it looked almost like it was gliding on the air as it zoomed around, narrowly dodging each spike that rose from the earth.
As the snake danced in the field of spikes, Finn's eyes turned to the bear. Copious amounts of earth energy was still being pumped into the ground via its arms.
It's going all in... This dramatic, landscape destroying power was created by the ironhide bear's last desperate act. If it was unable to kill this snake with this, it was finished.
Alas, despite the initial lucky spike, the snake was too quick when empowered with it's own wind energy. It managed to avoid each and every one. It slowly circled around the ironhide bear, which had already collapsed from bloodloss.
Although, it was still very much alive, judging from the threateningly sharp growls it was emitting. To the victorious snake, however, it was simply the cries of defeat.
Without wasting any time, windblades materialized out of the air flew towards the defenseless bear.
The bear's head separated from its body, shooting blood out like a fountain. It was over, the rank three ironhide bear was dead.
Finn sat perfectly still, wondering what type and rank this mysterious snake was. Bryn would probably know... Finn's thoughts turned to the family he was leaving behind.
Meanwhile, the snake was beginning to swallow the body of the bear whole, which was amazing to watch, in its own terrifying way.
Its jaw unhinged itself, and began working its mouth around the frame of the massive beast. It looked particularly gruesome, at least to Finn, who began to have second thoughts about being swallowed whole.
Hopefully its satisfied with the bear and forgets about me... Finn could only hope for such a miracle. Sadly it was not to be.
Upon finishing its swallowing of the bear, the snake approached the tree upon where the broken form of Finn lay. The bulge in its body causing it to be noticeably slower.
It... looks so much bigger up close. Finn felt an instinctive terror course through his veins. As the snake gazed down at him with its blue, slit eyes, Finn gathered what meager energy he had managed to gather and condensed it into his throat.
Finn fired a small, weak beam of light at the snake gazing down upon him. The beam impacted its scales... and did absolutely nothing, not even a blemish was left behind.
It was purely a knee jerk reaction. The snake did not flinch, but its eyes did widen marginally. Finn interpreted this as an 'I cant believe this puny lizard did that...' look.
Tilting its head, the snake started closely examining Finn, licking him with its tongue even, which made Finn shiver in discomfort.
Is it tasting me first? Just get it over with you damned snake! Finn's nerves were fried. Being examined by a snake large enough to destroy a house was not a pleasant experience.
Raising its head, the snake beheld Finn one more time before scooping him up into his mouth.
This is the end... Finn lost conciousness to that thought. The pain of being moved while critically injured, as well as the stress of the day combined to send Finn over the edge.
All he saw now, was darkness...
... Am I dead? Finn awoke to darkness. He felt wet all over, and a foul smell permeated his nostrils. It was quite overwhelming actually.
Trying to move only brought stabs of pain, forcing him to stop. Craning his neck carefully, he looked up, and the darkness slightly receded. He could see...
Stars! Where the hell am I? I don't feel dead... Finn was beyond confused. The last thing he remembered was being swallowed. Now he was looking up at stars. However, upon closer examination, only a small circular patch of sky was actually visible.
It was as if he was in a building and the roof had a large circular hole in it. Except for a small patch of sky, everything else was pitch black.
Unable to see anything, unable to move, unable to gather energy into his core due to lack of sunlight, Finn did the only thing he could do at the moment.
Finn fell asleep. He was still exhausted after all.
When he awoke due to the bright sunlight bearing down on him, Finn was greeted with an unbelievable sight. He was still alive, sure, but he was surrounded.
The snake that had killed the ironhide bear was completely curled around him in all directions. The building he thought of before was actually the body of the snake surrounding him on all sides like a bluish prison
He was literally caged in by the snake!
The only way out was the large opening at the top, where the snake didnt cover.
Why... am I still alive? Fighting through the pain, Finn lifted his head to look around and nearly choked on his saliva.
The head of the snake was staring down at him from above.
Oh... hello there... Finn prayed he didn't just jinx himself with that thought.