John says “Oh, no you don’t!” as he tackles Papi to the ground from behind. He quickly pins her down saying “You’re not getting away that easily. Not until I’m done!” Papi kicks and struggles under John’s weight, but John doesn’t budge until he is finished with her. John finally lets Papi go after he double-knotted her top. Papi gets up and tries to untie her top, but John made sure the strings were too short for Papi to get a hold of. After a moment Papi jumps onto a nearby tree and climbs it. John walks up to the tree and says to Papi “You are wearing that! And that’s final!” as she stares down at him with a look of fury on her face.
John returns to the campfire that they set up just inside a nearby forest. Nasha and Kenta have been watching John for the last hour or so trying to keep Papi from removing her clothes. John says to them “I think that’s the one thing I wish she hadn’t picked up from the other Harpies. I swear she is now a wild Harpy.”
Kenta says “I think she is more of a feral Harpy. We can control her a bit. She may also just be going into her rebellious stage. All children go through it.”
Nasha pulls some cooked meat away from the fire and starts handing it out. Papi almost immediately gets down out of the tree to get her food. John gives Papi a dirty look as she eats.
John says to the others “So I think we are getting very close to the dragon. I mean Glee knew some things. But still not a lot.”
Kenta says “Yes, I asked about the dragon while I was in town. They said that there is an outpost near it. But we will have to cross some untamed land to get to it.”
John says “Well, I doubted we would have a road to it and be able to walk right up to it. Let’s get some sleep and try to make it to the outpost by tomorrow at least.”
Papi climbs on top of John as he gets ready to go to sleep and lays her head on his chest. John wants to push her away, but he starts humming her to sleep.
The next day there is not a cloud in the sky and the road pulls away from the forest. The group passes through an empty field with a few small hills in it midday.
Nasha suddenly stops. John says to her “What’s up?”
Nasha says “I thought I felt something move nearby.” Kenta’s ears twitch for a moment, then she reaches for her sword. John quickly spins around as several Orcs pop up from behind some of the hills. Some rush forward while the others hold back. John can see that the ones that are holding back have bows in their hands. The Orcs that rush forward quickly surround the group to cut off any escape. John finds himself flanked. The Orcs don’t attack but do keep their weapons point at the group. John can see Kenta and Nasha out of the corner of his eye. They seem ready to attack, but John decides to try a different approach and says “Hello” to the Orc in front of him.
The Orc snarls back “Silence!” John feels a bow to the back of his head and everything goes dark.
John comes to and finds he is tied up to a post. John looks around to see where he is and what is happening. They seem to still be in the field. He can also see the others are tied up but don’t look harmed in any way. The Orcs are nearby and look to be going through everyone’s stuff. He looks to the clear blue sky trying to think of something, but nothing comes to him. He looks back down to the ground feeling defeated. A shadow passes over him and he thinks “Great now it’s going to rain.” But he then realizes that there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. He looks up to see the Harpy Eagle coming in for a landing.
The Harpy Eagle lands nearby and starts to walk towards John. The Orcs see her and one rushes her to attack. The Harpy Eagle jumps back with a flap of her wings and kicks at the Orc. She leaves a long gash in the Orc’s arm and the Orc is forced to retreat. The Harpy Eagle sees an Orc archer readying his bow. She moves towards the Orc by performing a quick spin and slaps him with her outstretched wing. John is surprised at how fast she can move for a creature of her size. The Harpy Eagle starts moving towards John again. John quickly says to her as she nears “I will be more willing to mate knowing my companions are safe!” The Harpy Eagle stops, she then turns to face the Orcs. She lets out a scream towards the Orcs. One Orc echoes back at her with a roar. The Harpy Eagle pulls her head back for a moment. She then jumps and lands on top of the Orc knocking their weapon out of their hand. Harpy Eagle then takes off with the Orc in her claws. She climbs higher as the Orc fights her feet. Harpy Eagle then let’s go of the Orc. The Orc screams as they fall and hits the ground with a bone-shattering thud. All the Orc watched what happen. They then look up to see the Harpy Eagle coming back in a dive with her feet in position to grab another one. The Orcs look at each other and then flee in all directions.
The Harpy Eagle lands and looks around. She then goes over to John and starts trying to free him with her claws and mouth. John quickly gets over to the others once he is free. He says to them “are you alright?” as he frees Nasha first.
Nasha says “Yes, we both lowered our weapons the moment you hit the ground.”
Kenta says “I knew better than to attack while you were out” as John frees her next. Kenta frees Papi. John sees that the Orcs tiled a rope around Papi’s arms and midsection.
John looks at the Harpy Eagle then at Nasha. He then steps up in front of the Harpy Eagle and says “I am ready to fulfill my end of our bargain.”
The Harpy Eagle looks around at the group then says “I release you from our bargain” and starts to walk away.
John stands there for a moment then says “What??”
The Harpy Eagle looks back at John saying “I can see when my mating would not be welcomed” She opens her wings to take off.
Nasha quickly moves next to the Harpy Eagle saying “Thank you” disrupting the Harpy Eagle’s take-off. The Harpy Eagle lowers her wings to look at Nasha and nods to her. Nasha pulls back and the Harpy Eagle opens her wings once more for takeoff.
John says “Wait!”
The Harpy Eagle spins around to snap at him “WHAT!” as she lowers her wings.
John says “Look, I don’t want you to have traveled all this way for nothing. Did you fly over or near a town surrounded by fields with a flock of Harpies living nearby in a crevice?”
The Harpy Eagle says “Yes. Why?”
John says “We helped the Harpies make peace with the folks there and the Harpies can find willing mates there. So if you can explain to the Harpies that you are looking for a mate. They may be able to help you find one.” The Harpy Eagle tilts her head a little then turns to try to take off yet again. John says “You might want to bring the Harpies meat so they know you’re not hunting them.”
The Harpy Eagle says “Obviously” as she opens her wings and with one power flap is airborne. She starts heading towards the town.
Kenta walks up to John and says “I hope you know what you just did.”
John says “I do too.”
John finds that they are not far from the road and can make up some time before sunset.