The first thing I did when I managed to get up was check to see if Zhong was okay. I couldn't find a pulse, but I've never been able to, and when I got closer I could hear her breathing - she was alive. I shook her, but she didn't stir.
I heard rustling in the leaves, and I looked up. The man who had been with the vampires was standing over me. He was a grisly, muscular man with with hair all over his face and arms, but none on the top of his head. He was wearing a wife beater, cargo pants with a utility belt, and an enormous sinister grin. He was holding a bizarre sort of gun, with an enormous barrel, and leveling Zhong.
"Git up," he said, in a gruff voice. "Do as I say and nobody gets hurt. Make one wrong move and the girl gets it,"
I wasn't sure what to do - I knew I couldn't take this guy down in human form, but my dragon form was stronger. If I transformed, he might be to startled to react, or maybe my scales could protect me from the blast. It seemed as good a plan as any to me, so as I stood up and raised my hands, I focused hard on what it felt like to be a dragon, just like Teresa had told me. It wasn't working. I closed my eyes and focused as hard as I could.
"Don't even think about it," said my captor, "This thing's designed to take out Dracons, I'd have you before you were done changing. Save your strength,"
I stopped trying to transform. He'd ruled out both my reasons for thinking it would work.
"You Skyler Woods Brimmer?" he asked
I didn't say anything. I didn't think giving him my name would be a good idea.
"I asked you a question, boy! Answer me!"
On the other hand, not doing what he said seemed like an even worse idea. So I decided to lie. Unfortunately, I'm very bad at lying.
"No," I said, "Never heard of him. My name is Ted Chambers,"
Why exactly my U.S. History teachers name had come to mind I have no idea, but it had an unusual effect. The man immediately started laughing.
"Ted Chambers," he chortled, "Ha! Ted has been-"
Unfortunately, I never got to hear what Ted had been, as the man was interrupted. Specifically, by a blow to the head. He whirled around to face his assailant. The two grappled. All I could make out were silhouettes, but I saw the attacker pull a knife. My captor threw off his oversized weapon, since it was only impeding him in the struggle.
I ran for it. I picked it up and looked for the trigger. While I while examining the weapon, I heard a cry as my would be rescuer was thrown into a tree.
"Ok," he said, strangely calmly, "Now you're makin' me angry,"
As he ran back towards the other man, my fingers felt what seemed to be a trigger. I pointed it at my attacker and fired.
It veered off to the left and landed harmlessly in a tree trunk. The mysterious man jumped on the slightly-less mysterious man, trying to stab him in the chest.
I focused on changing forms again, and for some reason, this time it came naturally. I felt again the tail, the wings, and the powerful claws. It felt better outside. I ran towards the man and grabbed him.
"Now that's what I'm talkin' bout!" exclaimed my ally. As I restrained the man, he stabbed him through the heart. I let go of him as he fell to the ground. I'd never really seen a dead person before, and for some reason I hadn't expected to kill the guy. Apparently the other guy hadn't either.
"What the Hell?" he said. "shit! This ain't no vampire!"
"No," I tried to answer, but of course it came out "Ruur,"
"Hey man," he said, "I don't speak none of that draconic shit yet. Turn human again, then we'll talk,"
After some concentration, I managed to. I realized that the tail had ripped a whole in my pants, and my rollerblades, pads, and helmet were all ruined. How was I going to explain this to the parents.
"Man," said my rescuer, "I wasn't expecting to kill that guy- I mean, I was, but I didn't think it was no guy, you know- thought it was one a them vamps,"
"No," I said, trying to hold my pants together in the back, "They both turned to dust in a big flash of light,"
"Really?" he said, "So that's what that was all about. Well don't that just kill ya. Show up to do your job, and somebody else does it for ya," he thought for a minute.
"Oh I'm sorry," he said, "I never introduced myself. The Reverand Robert Freelander, Vampire hunter extraordinaire, at your service,"