Chasing Evil

Chasing Evil by Adam Blade Read Free Book Online

Book: Chasing Evil by Adam Blade Read Free Book Online
Authors: Adam Blade
Castor’s chest, and lowered his sword to the other boy’s throat. The crowd shouted its applause.
    â€œThis fight is over,” Tanner said, wiping the sweat from his eyes, his chest heaving. Castor stared up at him, more surprised than frightened. Tanner looked for Gwen again in the crowd and smiled with relief when he saw her. But she was cupping her hands around her mouth, shouting something at him.
    â€œâ€” out!”
    Tanner frowned. Look out?
    Something heavy hit him from behind. The world blurred as the ground came up to smack him in the face and chest. The crowd fell silent. Tanner rolled over.
    A great, coiled ball of golden fur and muscle.
    She was a massive cat, as large as Gulkien. The creature arched her back, her tail pointed straight up. Her eyes glittered with an angry green light, and she bared razor-sharp teeth at Tanner. At the edge of his vision was Castor, sitting up and brushing the dirt from his hair. The crowd screamed and scrambled away in fear.
    A Beast!
    Tanner stayed frozen on the ground, not daring to move. His eyes fixed on the creature, as her tense, gigantic muscles rippled under golden fur. Daggerlike claws slid out from her paws and she spat angrily at him. The Beast tensed, ready to pounce. Beyond the creature, Tanner could see Castor smiling. Tanner felt empty fear in his gut.
    I’m going to die.

Y ou’ve made Nera angry,” said Castor, wiping his sword as he walked up to where Tanner lay splayed under the Beast’s vicious jaws. “Now you’ll stay down there in the dirt until I let you up.”
    With a laugh, Castor allowed Nera to wrap her tail around his waist. Then he was swung up to sit astride her neck. The Beast raked the ground next to Tanner’s head, while Castor grinned and folded his arms across his chest.
    Tanner looked from the Beast to Castor. He’s been chosen, Tanner realized with a jolt, just as Firepos chose me, and Gulkien chose Gwen. It couldn’t be!
    I sense that my Chosen Rider is under attack — from an old friend. I break through the clouds, plummeting down on outspread wings, flames flickering at their edges. I land on the ruined market wall. I see Nera. She is wild, crazed to protect her Chosen Rider. This is not a game. Nera wants blood — I can see it in her eyes. Her loyalty has clouded her senses. Tanner is her prey.
    I call to Gulkien. We must act — now!
    Tanner started as the air rushed back in a whirlwind of dust. The crowd screamed, and Firepos and Gulkien burst into the square overhead on thundering wings. As Firepos shrieked, Gulkien howled a jolting, visceral cry. The villagers covered their ears, and the Beasts swooped low, huge and angry. Firepos flew at Nera, beating her wings and snapping with her hooked beak, forcing the Beast away from Tanner. Gulkien caught Nera’s leg in his jaws and yanked her into the air so that Castor lunged forward to cling to his Beast’s throat. Nera twisted, clawing Gulkien’s face in a bloody spray that knocked Gulkien off balance, but before Nera landed, Firepos had her. She clamped her beak on Nera’s neck — Nera’s claws flashed at Firepos’s eyes — and the flame bird jerked backward, releasing Nera. Gulkien roared, baring his gums and fangs, Gwen standing next to him.
    Murmurs rippled around the crowd, as the people stared in astonishment at the three Beasts. “I was told about such things by my father,” Tanner heard someone say, “but I never thought they really existed.”
    Castor leaped down from his Beast. Turning in a slow circle, he took in the sight of Firepos and Gulkien, looking them up and down. He tucked a stray lock of golden hair behind an ear and straightened his shoulders, facing up to the Beasts. Gulkien let out a low snarl.
    â€œYour pets are impressive.” He paused. “If you like that type of thing.” He rested a hand in Nera’s thick fur and smiled up into her

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