“If you kill them, I’ll have them under control really fast,” Alissa said brightly.
He blinked and said. “No, I think we’ll be fine, thanks.” Tzar was still hissing but his absolute panic had dropped when the monster had fallen apart. The hissing and howling behind him had subsided as people got their birds calmed down and they were bringing Archie back, though slowly. He could just see them out of the corner of his eye, though he didn’t take his eyes off the little girl, nor let the welcoming smile slip on his face. He was very glad that his veil was a thick, travelling veil. He let his fist, with the silk beak loop press into his gut to help keep his last meal inside where it should be.
Thankfully the wind was blowing from behind. Even if the herd wouldn’t have smelled, at all, the girl’s pet still had rotting flesh on it. He felt as if there was a cloud of stench oozing off her smiling face, a darkness, a fetid sense of destruction. He felt like his own smile was congealed rot.
The other Hippifrei had gotten onto their skeleton rides and one now came forward and offered the great salaam. – I’m still not use to that,-- Kyrus thought. “Kraganzh. I am the most honourable and glorious Siwion’s great uncle Haglem.” He turned and offered the same great salaam to his great niece. “Alissa, I see that you are honourably received and graciously greeted by your potential groom and his people. Grow and go with the Spirit of the wind and the Spirits of the Horse.”
He flung his hand up and the whole escort wheeled and cantered away, far faster than any fleshy horse could, before Kyrus could do more than open his mouth and say “Herdmaster…”
“Oh, let him go…” Kyrus snapped his attention back to Alissa. “They want to go home as fast as possible. Grandmama made them come. They don’t like to be away from the dust grass long.”
“I see… but they’re just leaving you.”
She giggled. “That’s all right. Nobody’s going to hurt me. If you don’t want to kill your birds to control them, I can.”
“NO… thank you.” Kyrus barely kept himself from snapping at her. The Herdmaster and the others were terrified of you. They are running away from you as fast as they can. They dumped you, as honourably as they could, but dumped you all the same. “Siwion Alissa. Do you wish to continue today, or are you fatigued?”
“Oh, I want to see Lainz!” She clapped her hands. “I’m not tired at all. Let’s go! I like to see you flying… those are wonderful! Warbirds that can fly! Let’s see if my Lovey here can keep up!” The monster horse turned its empty eyesockets on Kyrus, tilting its heavily adorned head one way, then the other, for all the world as if it could see him, on Tzar, both of them on a flight stick.
“You want to race?”
She squealed happily. “That’ll be fun! One, two three, GO!”