You take a quick step forward and swing in with your heavy club, putting all of your weight into the attack. The spikes penetrate the soft flesh of the beast's neck, but it charges on, as though it didn't feel a thing, and rips the club from your hand.

You watch helplessly as the massive form of muscle and fur continues its charge on the woman you once held onto in the night. You hear her cry out and watch as the bear charges on, slamming it's body into the thick trunk of a nearby tree. Something in the tree cracks on impact, and the bear slumps to the ground, shallow of breath and bleeding heavily from the spiked club hanging from its neck.

You glance around for Yornalla and are both relieved and upset to find her safe in the arms of Alkar, several feet away. They slowly rise to their feet and look at you, Alkar looks thankful while Yornalla has eyes wide with terror.

Alkar pats the woman, his woman, on the shoulder and then walks over to you. He clasps your hand. "You did well with that beast. It will not be a threat to anyone thanks to your quick thinking."

Stubbornly, you refuse to respond to his comment. "Come on," You say, "there is still a lot of ground for us to cover."

You start walking and do not look back to make sure that they are following. You know they will follow anyway. Part of you wishes they would stop following, but you know that the fate of your village rests not only on your shoulders but theirs, and they are just as driven as you to put an end to the nightmares of your people. That doesn't stop you from hoping that they fall asleep so that you have an excuse to kill them, though.

You march on for hours; not stopping to eat though your stomach begs you to feed; not stopping for drink, though our throat is beyond parched; not stopping to rest, for to rest is to succumb to the puppeteer of dreamers. Yornalla and Alkar keep up, neither one complaining. This is not a mission for those without will power.

Several hours pass and the sun begins to set. On the horizon you see the lights of the city glowing dimly against the red backdrop of the sky.

You stop where you are; weary of traveling into Tor-Matu in the midst of the night. Not with Malkarus there, controlling the dreams of his own people no doubt.

Alkar and Yornalla look at you expectantly, as though awaiting a decision from you. Though you have accepted the role of leader, you cannot help but feel annoyed by their utter dependence on you. You shake such negative thoughts from your head and take a breath.

"Those lights are the city of Tor-Matu, wherein we will find Malkarus. I'm not sure that entering the city at night is a wise choice, but I'm interested in hearing what the two of you say before I make any decisions."

You wait while the two of them look at one another in though. Yornalla speaks first, always the more impulsive of the two.

"Why wait? The problem will only worsen if we do! Let's just go in and take care of him now," she said.

Alkar shook his head. "To go now would be foolish," he said. "Everyone in the city, if under his control, will be there, fully prepared for the attack."

"They'll be there in the day," Yornalla argues.

"We'll be able to see them in the day," Alkar reasons.

"They'll be able to see us in the day!!" Yornalla shoots back.

"Enough," Alkar says, holding up one of his massive hands to silence her. "Let Borkka decide, he has heard our arguments."

Yornalla's eyes go to yours, Alkar stares just above you, as though avoiding eye contact.

You think it over briefly before reaching a decision. You open your mouth without emitting a sound for a few seconds. Then you announce your answer.