Salia turned and looked out of the cell door, but she couldn’t see anyone approaching. There were so many dragons around that she couldn’t sense individual ones at the moment. She looked over at Karilya questioningly. The dragon girl gave her a reassuring smile, slammed the cell door shut and clicked a bolt into place.
“She’s right, someone is coming. He was pushing his aura out ahead to let her know so she’d get into this state.” She shook her head angrily. “That’s… argh! No wonder you people don’t like us.” She leaned her forehead against the door. “He shouldn’t-” She broke off as something large and heavy banged against the door. “He shouldn’t be doing that.”
The dragon girl braced herself against the door. “I’m not sure how long I can hold the door for against an adult. Hopefully long enough for mummy to get back. You should go over with Coromel. You might get hit when it gives.” The door shuddered under another attack.
Salia ran over to the bed. Coromel had lifted her tear streaked face and was staring at Karilya in confused surprise.
“S-she’s trying to protect me?” she asked.
Salia just nodded and hugged her. “It’ll be all right,” she whispered, mostly trying to convince herself. But she could hear the thudding getting louder and could see the door shuddering more under each blow.
“But why? She’s a dragon too.” Coromel uncurled a bit more and clung to Salia. “I’m scared. He says he’s going to drain me until I can’t recover. He-”
“He wants you scared,” Karilya said. “He must like the taste. I know it’s hard but try and keep calm. He might go away if he can’t get what he wants.” There was another thud and a sharp cracking sound as the wood of the door spintered inwards. “O-okay, hard might be an understatement. I’ll hold this as long as I can.” She gritted her teeth and pale light began to spill from under her skin and seep into the door. The crack glowed with the same light and sealed closed. “Come on, mummy.”
Salia hugged Coromel again and looked around the room for something to use as weapon. Since most speakers couldn’t attack dragons, they might have got careless. It didn’t look like they had. Well, she supposed she could hit him with the chair but she didn’t think that would do much good. A half yelp, half shriek from Karilya drew her attention back to the door in time to see it shatter inwards. The dragon girl screamed again as she flew backwards into the wall and then crumpled to the floor unconscious.
“Well, that was annoying.” The dark-haired dragon who strode into the cell was scowling. He walked over to Karilya and kicked her hard in the ribs. “Little brat, getting between me and what’s mine.” He turned back towards them and raised an eyebrow. “Who’s your friend, Coromel? Does she taste as sweet as you do?”
Salia stood up, placed herself between him and Coromel, and folded her arms. “I’m Salia,” she said with a bravado she didn’t feel. “I don’t think your lord will be too pleased if you eat me.”
“You’re in here because you’re food. Gerian-mirian can’t hog you. Where’s your pendant, girl, you’re not supposed to take it off.”
“I’m only here, because I’m visiting my friend.” Salia replied. “I don’t have a pendant.”
“What?” He hesitated slightly. “Stop talking nonsense.” He took a step towards her.
Salia screamed and flung herself at him. If she didn’t have a weapon, she’d have to use herself as one. He wasn’t expecting that and flailed backwards before toppling over. Salia clung to him and landed on his chest. She had to be quick before he recovered from the shock. She pushed her thumbs into his eyes and gouged at them the way her teachers at home had taught her then chomped down on his nose with her sharp little teeth. Twisting hard, she ripped the soft part of it away. He screamed and flung her to the side, where she landed with a thud near Karilya and lay there winded. Blood was dripping from his eyes and the ruin of his nose as he stalked towards her.
“You’ll pay for that, girl,” he growled. “I’m going to drain you to a husk. How did you do that?”
Salia glared up at him. “You really are stupid, aren’t you?” she snapped. “How do you think I did it?” That just earned her a violent kick in the ribs. Something gave with a sickening crack. She shrieked in pain, and a yellow blur thudded into her assailant just before everything faded to black.