Here is another excerpt from Blood of the Dragon. The sequel will be out in November if all goes as planned.
Chelandra jumped into the secured saddle, strapping her legs in with practiced swiftness, and nocked another arrow. The wagon shook dangerously as Ychthorn launched himself and Lana into the air. Thorn rose swiftly to meet their attacker and Lana noticed a human perched atop the dragon's shoulders. She aimed carefully, drawing on the hours of in-flight practice she and Thorn had committed to, and loosed the arrow. The human pulled on reins attached to the dragon's mouth and the dragon veered to the right, the arrow narrowly missing its target.
Thorn chased after the fleeing beast and together they raced toward the mountain. The creature swung around to meet Ychthorn head on as Lana fit another arrow. The other human brought his own bow to bear and Lana was forced to flatten herself against Thorn's back to avoid its deadly missile. The dragons played a deadly game of chicken, raking at each other wildly as they barely avoided a fatal collision. Thorn's talons left two deep gouges in the other dragon's flank, snapping one of the straps holding the saddle. The human wobbled precariously before righting himself.
The green beast swung in close, carefully avoiding Ychthorn's raking claws, and the man shouted through the wind.
"I am Commander Owen Locke. I demand you surrender in the name of Queen Slyvania."
Confusion passed between Lana and Thorn. They knew of King Alured's sister, but had never heard her referred to as a queen. They could only ponder the information for a brief moment before the other dragon closed with them, making another swiping attack, only to pull away again before Thorn could react. Ychthorn gave chase, following the attackers further up the mountain. The two beasts continued to dance in the air, their brief attacks causing only minor damage.
Lana glimpsed the peak of the mountain as it whipped past and on the other side lay a deep, black canyon. Its bottom was invisible from their current height and she warned Thorn to be cautious. He glanced away from his opponent for a brief moment to steal a peek at the canyon below and the green dragon took advantage. It threw its full weight into the pair, wrapping all four legs around Ychthorn, pinning one of the red dragon's wings against his side. Thorn had no choice but to clutch at the other beast, who beat its wings furiously to stay aloft with the added weight. The man on the red dragon's back was screaming instructions Lana could not understand and she searched desperately for her dagger.
A slashing swipe from the attacker shredded two of the three straps holding Lana's saddle to Thorn's back and she screamed in terror. Dropping her dagger, she threw her arms around his neck, clinging tightly. Commander Locke nocked another arrow and aimed it at the girl. She responded likewise, risking her precarious position, and loosed the arrow before he could get his bow completely cocked. It sunk deep into his left shoulder and he cursed her vilely.
The dragons, still locked in a death grip, lost height rapidly. Ychthorn, seeing the impossibility of their situation, closed his eyes for a very brief moment. He pictured the ejection lever on the saddle activating and immediately felt the weight on his back disappear. He heard Lana's scream of fear, fear that was not for herself, but for him. Still clinging to the dragon who kept his wing pinned, Ychthorn glanced up, watching the black dot of his best friend disappear into the clouds. She disappeared and he turned his attention back to the wicked duo in front of him. His teeth sunk deep into the other dragon's neck and they plummeted into the canyon.