An IN THE AIR Excerpt: “The Treasure of the Wind-Walker” by Bryan Dyke

The sea around him turned choppy.

The palm trees convulsed.

The shallows blossomed with odd waterspouts and turbulence.

Even closer, an unnatural twister formed across the beach dunes and rushed toward him and his claim, the air charged and alive.

Within the tumult, the outline of a human figure formed: tall and muscled, garbed with a turban and gem-hewn pants. The eyes glowed with inset lapis lazuli and twinkled as the wind whistled.

Some class of Ocean-born Djynn—a magic being shaped like a human but more akin to the demons of old and the wind-elementals of the elder planes.

Sorcery.

The treasure of Feloi was not unguarded after all.

“Kast be damned.” Mau-Keefe dove in the hole for cover.

With a flash to match the whipping wind, Mau-Keefe went for the gemmed hilt of Fang, his nearby blade. As he pulled the sword from its scabbard, the dark skies briefly illumined with emerald and jade, and the curious eyes of the gods watched him.

“Come for me then.”He snarled to the tempest.

The mindless Djynn did not offer a word in reply, and a vector of hardened wind slapped the sand across Mau-Keefe’s face like a dread coach-whip, drawing a small sliver of blood and kicking up sand.

Mau-Keefe lashed out with his blade to riposte, but the wispy Djynn shifted and dodged him with elegant ease. Again, the fine ends of the elemental’s body twisted to narrow twines and slapped down like lightening. This time, however, the pirate was ready, and the strike missed.

He leaped to the sands and open beach, raising Fang high and unbridling his feet.

Slashing wind and shimmering steel battled. Back and forth, both combatants lunged, pierced, and sliced. The sand and foamy beach turned upward, and Mau-Keefe was decorated in his own blood, sweat, and sand.

The fight was pointless.

He struck clean at the creature’s head and neck, and his blade passed through as it would smoke or clouds.

Now is the time to run.

The Captain bolted headlong for the palms and the island’s forests with whipping gales behind him.

 

 

48416177_2008938705839504_8094266344947580928_nBryan Dyke is flying blind on a rocket cycle in the clouds above Vermont, USA. He also lives there with his wife, Corinne, two children, Mayve and Owen, and a naughty dog named Lucy. He is a U.S. Army veteran and graduate of the University of Florida. An avid fan of the works of H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, and Jack Kirby, he has several published short stories in various anthologies.

 

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