Every Sunday night, they shared vision training. One partner had hollow bones, was aerodynamic and silent. The other, a girl, sat cross-legged, with eyes closed while she modulated her breathing and focused on maintaining the mental connection. When successful, she could see through predator eyes that only needed moon and starlight for illumination.
Flying over the forest, infinitesimal movements below drew that gaze like a heat seeking missile. Calloused feet with razor-sharp talons swung into forward position. Claws at the ready to clutch and puncture.
Sarie took a steadying breath as she dive-bombed, plummeting at alarming speeds. She pulled back her mental bonds knowing that the mouthful of salty warm plasma and sticky fur would turn her stomach. She would gag and cough when the sharp bones scraped against the inside of her throat. A sudden reaction like that would sever the tenuous mental bond.
Once the temperate meal was consumed, Sarie rejoined her partner fully. Growing impatient, she sent urgings to resume flight. The huntress stretched her powerful wings and dug through the air so that she was again soaring. With her hunger sated and plenty to spare for her young, the mother owl enjoyed the brief moment of freedom.
This was the time that Sarie waited for. Pushing her thoughts stronger into the bird’s mind, they turned east. The fires that had burned there were mostly out. The owl scanned the scene observing everything.
Hordes of people dressed in tribal garb shouted as they pushed timbers aside. From opposite ends of the make-shift arena, opposing teams entered.
A pack of sleek, black cats padded in on massive pillow-like pads. Dangerous yellow eyes regarded details of the playing field. Flexuous tails moved like cobras seeking targets to strike.
Next entered a herd of commanding steeds. Manes flying, hooves pounded the ground like rolling thunder. The forerunners reared up on hind legs and reached heavenward like Pegasus preparing to leap.
In response to the challenge, the felines lowered on haunches, bared fangs and struck out, hooked claws extended. Hissing and snarling.
The crowd of onlookers hushed in veneration.
As the battle commenced, the owl landed in a tree. Sarie’s attention receded. She didn’t’ care to see the massacre. She only needed to know the location of one man.
When it was done, the owl took to wing to witness the carnage. A man with glowing hands worked over a fallen stallion. Spotting him, she screeched and rocketed toward him.
Hearing it, he immediately rose to his feet. Reaching into a pocket, he pulled out a shiny object and held it high overhead.
The bird snatched it effortlessly. She spanned the distance to the girl in record time.
Sarie stood still, her arm outstretched and steady. The owl glided onto the perch bearing her prize. She dropped the object into the girl’s hand. Sarie spoke for the first time, “That was superb, little Mama.”
“Who whooo,” came the response before the mother flew off to feed her famished fuzz balls.
Story Prompt: WriteOn weekend challenge – in 500 words or less – Superb Owl [aka Suber Bowl]
Inspiration: Owls! and tongue-in-cheek description of a football game