September 28, 2028641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡf1KDb0PE3D
I woke up today with a jolt. I thought I heard something slammed my window. But then, seeing nothing, I dismissed it as a result of imagination from the sleepless nights I have been having. Well, what do you expect from a hunter? Of course, nightmare would rule my night.
I followed my daily routine every time I would wake up from a nightmare which unfortunately is every day of my life. I would get up and do 70 push-ups and 80 sit-ups, then straight to the cold shower and eat (duh?). It kept my mind off things.
I sat in my beat-up couch. It actually squeaked when I sat down and I could perfectly fell the springs touching my bottoms. And I am not exaggerating. I should just throw it away and buy a new one. With a laugh, I looked around my run-down apartment. Everything was in retirement. But I can’t really afford new things.
Work as a hunter doesn’t come with all the prestige you see in movies. No one pays well for monster extermination these days. And I really don’t understand why. They fear monsters but doesn’t want to pay for it. It was harder to find high-paying hunts than killing the monster itself.
I snapped out of thinking when I heard a constant beeping sound. My eyes wandered to my ledger.
A new bounty has been posted!
I quickly reached for the rectangular-shaped mirror that lit up when I touched it. I clicked through ads until I found the newest bounty. And gosh, do I want it?
20,000 silver and 500 gold. The highest bounty in years! And surely, all hunters would sign up for it. I clicked more to see the list of who signed up and boy, was I right? Almost every name in the business was there.
I picked the stylus up and added my name on the list before going back to the front page to see what monster was on the bounty. Pretty reckless, right? But what can I say? Desperate times call for desperate measures.
Wanted: Dead641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡ5hDQxVlRtY
Bounty: 20,000 silver, 500 gold641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡrXaL17TE3f
Species: Lyon Umong641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡM7RP0k0P7s
Warning: Deadly. Aggressive641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡlodfyNPG3K
Location: Somewhere in the Fortune Forest
And below it was a photo of a monster. It was the size of a standing bear. Its body was of a lion. Its fangs were so big it couldn’t fit in its mouth. Saliva trickled from the corner of its hideous mouth, as thick as mercury. Its fur was a charcoal black.
Lyons were deadly enemies. Everything it has can be used as a weapon; its claw as sharp as blades, its fangs honed for the perfect kill and its mercury-like saliva was poisonous to the skin. A few would survive the encounter; if not killed by it. Lyons have bad temper. They would attack anything-even their own kind.
A ring brought me out of my thinking and my hand automatically reached for my phone. I answered it without looking at the caller.
“Hello?” The voice greeted. “Gretel?”
“Yes, I’m here Skyler.” I answered with a yawn.
“Have you seen the new bounty?” He inquired. I could hear noises in the background. The sound of a door closing.
“Are you going out? And yep, I just signed.”
“Of course I’m going out. That bounty is 5 star, Gret. I don’t want anyone going there before me. So, that’s why I called. Split?”
“I need money, Sky. Split won’t do.”641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡhba5t8i1gD
September 28, 2028641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡ09ZEXN4oDu
“I thought split won’t do?” He joked with a grin.
Sky stood in front of me, he tapped his foot to a rhythm only he could hear. His golden blonde hair was unruly and long and it was tied only by a piece of rubber. His green eyes managed to look breathe-taking as they twinkle with mischief. He wore a black V-neck that showed off his muscle and faded-blue jeans.
Usually, hunters would wear more comfortable things like jogging pants or sweat pants for easier movements. But those doesn’t apply with me nor Sky. We wear what we want. And usually, it’ll end up ripped.
That’s why I saved myself the trouble. The jeans I was wearing was ripped at the knees but connected behind it. And my upper clothe was a black shirt below a leather jacket. And then completed with a black boots, one without heels because really? Who’d wear heels in muddy places?
“I’m poor. Not suicidal.” I deadpanned. “But that’s beside the point. Hunters are already roaming this forest.”
Sky grinned. “Good thing they’re stupid.”
Giving him a high five, I laughed. “They’re not searching where they are supposed to be.”
Suddenly, Sky started to walk towards me with an earnest expression. Shocked, I started to backed away from him only to be stopped by a tree. With my back firmly on the wood, Sky had no trouble of trapping me inside his arms.
“S-Sky?” I stuttered.
Since he was a good head taller than me, he had to lean down to whisper in my ears. A shiver ran down my spine when I felt his breathe on my neck. I stood, rigid as I waited. Suddenly, he breathe on my ear and I couldn’t stop the involuntary shiver that one action caused. And the blush that crept up on my cheeks when he bellowed loudly as he backed away from me.
Gritting my teeth in anger, I decided not to say anything but started my journey towards the hive of the Lyon Umong. With one last laugh, Sky started to follow me.
“Hey, are you mad?” Sky asked as he caught up with me. But I didn’t answered so he continued. “I’m sorry but I couldn’t resist not teasing you.”
I dismissed him with a wave of my hand and turned to look across the river. The water was as clear as a crystal and it flowed soundlessly. But a glittering silver substance, more compound than water, would cross ever few minutes.
Lyon likes to reside near rivers where it had the advantage in a fight because its strong feet can move effortlessly even in a raging current. Though, only few good hunters know this bit of information. And right now, it looked like only Sky and I were good enough to know.
We’re surrounded by a bunch of amateurs.
We followed the river up the mountain. And as every minute ticked by the mercury was getting thicker and thicker. I held my breath and scanned the surrounding. And there, in a pile of stone, was a Lyon Umong standing in all its glory. It glared and growled at me and Sky, obviously it found us first.
“Stay away from the water.” Sky’s velvety voice reminded me in a whisper.
Slowly, I knelt and picked my daggers from my knee-length biker boots. I stood up and ran towards the river. When I reached the end, I jumped across it and landed directly in front of the monster. Then, without a moment to lose, I slashed my dagger towards it and ended up wounding its left eye.
The beast roared. And in anger, it raised its two front paws in the air, making it much taller than when all 4 of its paw on the ground. I rolled to the side as the Lyon brought its humongous paws back to the ground where it landed with a loud thud.
“Sh*t, Gretel!” Sky exclaimed from the other side of the river. “You’re not alone on this hunt!”
But I didn’t had the time to answer as the beast turned towards my direction. Its remaining red eye saw nothing but me. It poised, as if ready to spring at any moment. I didn’t moved. I didn’t even dared to breathe.
Minute passed before I dared to turn and run. The huge beast followed me. It roared and growled as it chased after me as I ran along the river.
Stay out of the water. I chanted. Don’t get killed.
I kicked a tree to get myself running faster as I spun around to change course; away from the river and towards the forest. I didn’t need to look back to know if the monster was following me because I can feel its breath in my nape and the thumping of its monstrous paws on the earth. But then, I could hear something from behind it. Much quieter steps. Much lighter.
Suddenly, I spun towards the monster as I slid in the muddy ground beneath the Lyon and stabbed it in its belly. In that exact moment, Sky jumped from the huge stone towards the beast and stabbed it in its head. I rolled to the sides to avoid being crushed.
Sky offered a hand and I took it. We were both breathless, sweaty and muddy. Even after all that we were smiling. Because really? We just killed Lyon Umong. One of the rarest beast. A treasure catch.
And before I could forget, I reached for my back pocket and took a vial, which miraculously, didn’t shattered from the fight. I went to the monster and took a blood sample and I could feel Sky’s eyes on me.
“Trophy?” He asked with his brow raised but he was squinting at me.
“You know me, I like to collect remembrance.” I answered with a laugh and smoothly changed the topic. “So, how are we going to haul this catch towards the headquarters?”641Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡ8OgO1sAiZkns 126.96.36.199da2