Sapphire Iota fell out of the tree with a thud that knocked all the breath out of her lungs. Her instinct was to lie there and gulp for air, but combat training kicked in and she rolled over, narrowly avoiding being squished by a zombie jumping down from above.
Saph scrambled to her feet, panting hard and cursing the stupid zombies. The only thing zombie hordes were good at was ruining your nice, peaceful stroll.
One of them lunged forward, and she kicked it in the stomach as hard as she could, bringing the dagger in her right hand down on its neck. With the other dagger she stabbed a zombie on her left.
Hands grabbed her jacket and she sent an elbow backwards as her feet sent two more zombies staggering.
She spun around and kicked the legs out from underneath a zombie, but there were too many. Sapphire only needed a second to focus and use her Sensitive powers, but the zombies were surrounding her. She was about to get overrun.
She quickly assessed her options at the back of her mind. Sapphire had already discovered that they could follow her through the trees. She wouldn’t be able to fight much longer without someone at her back.
“Help!” she yelled. It wasn't often that Sapphire wished she had an obsessed stalker, but at times like this, she started to see the appeal.
While she was distracted, someone took one of her daggers. She roared, swinging her remaining dagger and killing most of the zombies surrounding her.
A teenage male zombie reached for her brown curly hair, and she slapped his hand away.
Sapphire spun, and spun again as the zombies closed in. Fire would stop them, but in the middle of a dry wood it could damage her more than them.
She ran through options in her mind. A zombie got too close and she panicked, snapping her plam against the air.
The wave of air caught the zombies, hurling them back a few hundred metres.
It was the chance she needed, and Sapphire closed her eyes.
She opened her mind, reaching for the zombies. Their slow, sluggish thoughts filled her head.
Sapphire spoke in their minds.
You will stop.
She could feel their confusion, but they slowly halted. She took a deep breath. It was working.
You will drop any weapons.
There were a few thumps as the zombies who’d scavenged weapons let go of them.
You will run away from here as fast as you can and never come back.
A few of them moaned in disappointment, but they could do nothing as their feet carried them into the distance.
Sapphire opened her bright blue eyes, relaxed.
“Fun,” she whispered, a smile creeping onto her face. She stooped to pick up her dropped dagger.
“Did you really assume they came alone?” a voice purred. Sapphire spun, but she was too late to do anything as a knife flew through the air and struck her in the shoulder.
She dropped to her knees, gasping. Her hands went to the wound. Blood was pouring out, darkening the forest floor. Her vision started to swim as the silhouette strode out of the shadows.
Her eyes widened and she tried to speak. This was impossible. It couldn’t be real.
Her attacker crouched down so that she was looking right into his smug green eyes.
“Sorry to disappoint you,” laughed the voice of Nefarian Serpine.