Darkstorm's sacrifice

Darkstorm nimbly leaped onto the boulder, his slitted amber eyes never leaving his opponent's. His misty charcoal coat rippled in the twilight breeze as a low growl escaped his tightened throat. A set of silvery fangs were bared, tinted with a thin shade of dark blood. He suddenly pivoted, and sprang, using every ounce of thick muscle in his legs. He launched himself towards Silverfeet and sunk his teeth into the alpha's tough flank, ripping savagely at the wolf's flesh, and spraying deep red about the granite rock.

Silverfeet flung himself against his challenger, fighting off Darkstorm with both tooth and claw. Darkstorm snarled, and shook away his attacker, then lunging at him. The alpha crumpled, dark blood staining his silvery fur. His breath slowed, and then stopped, and the wolf lay motionless, the constant pounding of his heart now silent. Darkstorm raised his head, staring at the pack as they were at him. They were dumfounded at the sudden and short death of their leader, and now lowered their eyes and heads submissively to their new alpha, now standing proud in the rising fire of the sun. He was their future.

Darkstorm stood tall in the frigid waters of the creek, upon the cliffs from which careened the mighty East Ridge Falls. The wind snapped icily at his skin, and tossed his dark fur like angry fire. He bent his head, and thirstily lapped up the cold water, which slid pleasantly down his dry throat. He then gazed upwards, staring at the cloudless skies. Below the cliffs lay a sea of forest, and beyond that, a golden tundra. It was early spring, and only two winters back he had challenged and caused the death of the alpha of the Whitehawk Creek Pack, the pack that he now held responsibility for. He knew from his previous pack, the West Ridge Pack, that it was against the wolf code to kill in a challenge - or even for a pack-less wolf to challenge an alpha. Yet he had ignored this - he had hated and dismissed all law of the wolf then, as it was what had affected his position as a beta in West Ridge, and placed him without family or pack.

Russet came bounding towards him, his cinnamon coat gleaming and glossy in the sunlight. Darkstorm could tell straight away from the excited wags of the wolf's tail and the spark in his pale brown eyes that they were here - pups! The two wolves streamed down the cliffside, eagerly dodging the trees and following the scent path to their pack den. The alpha barked happily, and his pack welcomed him into the den, followed by Russet. He saw Raven, his mate, laying on her side, and her four pups wriggling and fighting beside her. Their tiny eyes were sealed shut, and their teeth were tiny but sharp. They were all black, like he and raven, but two had splotches of white on their faces and stomachs. One of the white-masked pups had a white tip on it's tail, which was thumping the ground enthusiastically. Raven glanced at Darkstorm with tired eyes, and then her heavy eyelids shut from exhaustion. He nudged her with his nose, and left the den.

Skysong stood in the shallow depths of Whitehawk Creek, feeling the wind blow through her fur and giving her a carefree, spirited attitude. She raced along the creek, her paws sending cold water splashing up her dark coat. Her pale green eyes scanned the jagged horizon, watching the sun rise, showering sparks of gold upon the tundra.

Skysong walked ashore, shaking the water off her night-black fur. She paused for a moment, sensing a sort of danger unknown to her. She sniffed the air, and suddenly cried out at an agonizing pain in her back muscles. Skysong tried to free herself from the bear's weight, then snarling and clawing at it's face and eyes, but the bear remained unharmed. The female wolf knew she was as good as dead. She tried to helplessly shake it off, but it's teeth were firmly sunk into her back. The wolf cried out for help from Blackfire, her brother, as the great bear prepared for it's fatal bit to her jugular vein, but he only yelped at her sorrowfully, then turning and running to the forest in the opposite direction. Suddenly she heard the bear roar with pain and rage, and it let go of Starsong, turning to fight Darkstorm, who had then leaped upon the bear's back and sunk his razor-sharp teeth into the bear's massive neck muscle. Though the attack wasn't enough to cause the bear serious harm, it distracted it long enough so that Skysong could herself to a hiding place. She watched, suffering from untold pain and unable to help, as the bear lifted her sire with it's enormous forepaws and delivered the fatal bite to Darkstorm. The alpha convulsed in the bear's tight grip, and then went limp as the bear dragged the wolf away. Skysong felt her strength ebbing away from her as her dripping blood formed a dark crimson path behind her as she made her way slowly to the den. Darkstorm had died in order to save her life - a sacrifice she wouldn't soon forget.

by Madie, age 11

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