Trek For Survival - novelonlinefull.com
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"But the chances that he's doing it for drama with someone else is gone! If he's truly serious about being your second mate, this could be horrible!" said Sudar, holding a hand to his head as he tried to think.
"Could be horrible?" exclaimed Vonn. "I would think it already is!"
"Surely, we can talk to someone, maybe the leader of the orcs to get this figured out?" asked Tom.
"I don't think so. The prince is old enough to be an adult, which means the leader has no say in who he chooses to be a mate with. I don't understand how he can think being your second would be better and any other person. How did your status with the orcs get so high?" said Sudar, shaking his head.
"The story she told yesterday seemed to make a huge impression on them," said the lion. "Maybe that was why they like her so much?"
"Wait, does this mean that other orcs might be trying to become her mates, too?" exclaimed Carla. "We have to get out of here!"
"I had wanted them to like you, so the trades would be good, but I never antic.i.p.ated this," said Sudar.
"Could the necklaces have anything to do with it?" asked Mikey, holding his amulet from the tree out to see it.
"Maybe, but it doesn't matter at the moment," said Gia. "I have to figure out a way to convince this orc I'm not interested without insulting him. I've never had to turn someone down before."
"I made sure of that," agreed Vonn. "Maybe I should just fight him, and get it over with. The longer we stay here, the more orcs may try to start something."
"As much as I hate to see you fight an orc, I tend to agree," said Tom.
"But I don't want you to lose and have a second mate!" cried Gia.
"What this?" said a voice behind them.
They all turned to find Jreg standing with a large desert bug dead behind him, sweating profusely in the presence of the lion. He fought to stand so close to it.
"Those bugs are considered delicacies and are extremely hard to hunt," whispered Sudar in amazement.
"I don't care," whispered Gia back.
"I will challenge you for Gia," said Vonn, before Gia could say anything to Jreg. "If I win, you will leave Gia alone. If I lose, you may be her second mate."
Jreg nodded quickly. "We fight challenge in village center."
Vonn moved to follow the orc, and Gia grabbed his arm. "Be careful, please!"
He gave her a smile and wrapped a hand around her cheek. "I will not lose."
Gia trailed after him, feeling lost and unsure of what was expected of her with the rest of her family trailing behind. The lion was curious enough to follow as well, and that drew the attention of the rest of the orc village.
"After the fight is over, your healers will heal both of us," said Vonn, to Jreg. "And we are going to leave immediately after that. We have a long way to go, and I will not waste more time with more challenges!"
The orcs who were close enough to hear, all nodded in understanding. Several of the leaders approached, since this was a gathering place of four different tribes, and they started discussing among them about who should be required to heal the fighters. Gia stood there, not understanding what they were saying. The decision was finally made to have the healer of the tribe of Jreg's father heal them, since he was of that tribe, and all the orcs who were interested in challenging for the right to be Gia's mate were disappointed to find she wasn't interested in having another.
"I can't believe how many of them are interested," whispered Gia, horrified, to her mother.
"I know!" answered Carla, looking around at the upset orcs who were talking quickly to each other about how they had been planning to try. "None of them better try that with me! "I'll slap them silly!"
"You?" said Gia, looking at her mother in shock. This woman was afraid of everything! When did she ever think she would harm someone?
"Well, I would probably just scream and run in fear, honestly," admitted Carla, grabbing Tom's arm in support. Acting brave seemed to have been exhausting for her.
"Is Vonn going to be alright?" asked Mikey, pushing past Carla to see the two fighters better.
"I certainly hope so," murmured Gia, crossing her arms over her chest. She had been about to chew on her fingernails, and that was a habit she hadn't had in years. It took her a really long time to break, and she definitely didn't want to pick it back up now. What was she thinking?? This was horrible!
Vonn circled around Jreg, watching how the orc moved, and waited for him to make the first move. As Jreg moved forward to punch him, Vonn dropped down under his fist and ducked to the side, kicked at Jreg's knee with all of his weight.
The orc screamed, falling forward, and Vonn was right there, grabbing Jreg's hand as he reached out to break his fall and jerking it back so the orc's face slammed into the hard ground. Vonn landed on Jreg's back, sliding quickly down and placing his knee onto the orcs neck, pulling the arm backwards into an unnatural position.
"Yield," said Vonn, barely having broken a sweat.
The orc could only cry out in pain, panting in the dirt. The crowd around him was completely silent, as none of them had ever seen that before. Gia just gaped in shock, her mouth hanging open. When had Vonn learned to fight like that??
"Give up!" growled Vonn, jerking the arm and making the orc grunt in more pain.
"Give," panted the orc.
Vonn jumped up off of him and turned to look around at the other orcs.
"Gia is my mate! She doesn't want another. Only one!"
The other orcs nodded their understanding, watching as Jreg rolled over and winced in pain from his knee. The healer rushed over to look at it and started chanting to heal the dislocated knee.
Gia wanted to rush to Vonn's side but she was torn. He kind of scared her. If he could fight like that, why hadn't she realized it sooner? Wasn't there plenty of opportunities for him to fight? She tried to think over their trip as the healer performed his magic ritual to heal Jreg's leg.
As soon as the healer was done, Vonn held out a hand to help Jreg up from the ground. Jreg paused and looked at him for a moment.
"I would be honored to have you as a brother, even if my mate will not accept an orc. I would be honored to have one such as yourself to hunt beside me if a time ever called for it. I do not want this to dishonor you," said Vonn.
Jreg nodded slowly, and accepted his hand. Once they stood side by side, Gia approached slowly.
"Jreg honored to be brother to Vonn, but Jreg need work harder to earn right to be a mate. Jreg thought it good luck to be Gia mate, but Jreg got leg hurt when try. Must try harder to be mate."
"But not my mate," said Gia quickly.
"No, Gia good story teller, but Gia only have one mate. Human's strange," said Jreg, shaking his head.
"Is that why you wanted to be my mate? Because I told the story well?" asked Gia, confused. Why would that cause him to want to be her mate?
"Story telling good for orc people," said Jreg. "Stories give orc something to do in storms and at night when too tired to do anything else."
Gia nodded her understanding. "We are leaving now. Thank you for letting us stay the night. We have a long way to go to get home."
"Gia take gifts?" asked Jreg, turning towards his father in the crowd.
"Gifts?" asked Gia and Vonn together.
The orcs had piled things together, out of sight of the fighters, and Sudar gave a low whistle when he saw it.
"It is considered a great insult not to take any gifts offered," Sudar said, shaking his head.
"There's no way we can take all of that!" gasped Gia as her eyes traveled over the mult.i.tude of things in the pile. There were dead animals, heavy weapons, a whole tent complete with long tent poles, clothing, jewelry, and lots more.
"Well, we should go through it and see what we can do," said Vonn.
"Jreg has gift," said Jreg, trotting off and returning quickly with a two wheeled cart. "Gia gifts fit on cart."
Gia and Vonn stared at the cart in shock, because it looked exactly like the one they had when they left the city so long ago.
"I guess I've pulled one of these before, I can pull another one again," Vonn laughed, moving to start loading the cart down with all of the items. Gia nodded and moved to help. She would wait until they were away from the orcs before she started asking him questions.