Werfas looked over at Kyrus, his face protected from the tearing wind of flight by a clear shield that the Nadumon had come up with. They actually said it was a Rumon idea. He didn’t particularly care whose idea it was, as long as it worked.
Ilax was half distracted with his children coming and sending him and Elemfias and Kyrus flying out to meet them would calm his mind and let him work in code instead of worrying.
They swooped down on the camp ground and the reaction of the older warbirds was interesting. Some crouched and began making ‘feed me’ chirps in their basso voices… others began stamping and waving crests and wings at their apparently flighted relatives in what looked like fight challenge. Still others began hopping and uselessly flapping their tiny wings, making a noise that Werfas had never heard before… a plaintive, mournful honking.
They got their birds down as fast as they could before the Milari caravan lost all control and scattered to the horizons. Maks and Ila were standing on their birds’ saddles, waving wildly, even as their mounts ran in circles, beaks open, trilling wildly under where their stepbrother, his wingbrother and their teacher were landing. The pair of warbirds were orange with black stripes and red eyes… some of the new-breed birds.
“Hey! Ky! Hey! Wer! Wer! Zon! You came to get us! Can we fly the rest of the way? The FireDrakes said no and they’re being nasty about it, saying they had no harnesses and if they did we could have been in the city days ago and the Hippifrei princess… she’s tied up tight, right? She’s not making bone monsters anymore is she? Hey, did you guys bring flying sticks for us? Or can you make the FireDrakes fly us?”
Werfas was glad that his veil, plastered tight to the bottom of the face-shield hid his smile. Maks and Ila jumped off their birds as they landed and came tearing over, to fling themselves at them. He’d gotten so used to the Lainz propriety that he nearly laughed out loud as they continued to chatter at high speed and top volume.
As he caught Mak’s hug he cast a glance up at where the FireDrake ‘escort’ circled. I’m not surprised you’re still up there, you cowards!
He hadn’t intended them to hear him but a faint chuckle was his response. *Not our warbirds. Not our Caravan. *
*It most certainly is your Caravan you recalcitrant machines, * he thought back at them. *They are going to be your programmers.*
*Oh. Comprehension. Alarm.*
Kyrus looked up at them as well. *Get your scaly cowering chick selves down here. You are going to help us fly everybody home. Today.*