As she discussed how to bind it, and whether a bound animal could even be bound again, the monster had stopped moving altogether. Its muscles had relaxed, its growling had ceased. The only indication that it was still alive was the steady rise and fall from its breathing. As it conserved energy, it went over its options again.

Image: Julia is kneeling in front of the monster, speaking to Yuli who is still out of frame except for their claws. Julia has the monster’s paws pulled out in front of it. End description.

Returning to the wild was impossible with a fae chasing it. The people who had captured it and stuffed it in a box were nowhere to be seen, but this new group was no less infuriating. They were here to lock it up again--or kill it--of this the monster was convinced. Its gaze stayed trained on Phoebe. Even though Julia was right in front of it, it didn’t pay attention to her anymore. It was pinned against a high, smooth wall, and the only option was to scale it- a desire so desperate and innate.

There was one route of escape left.

In an instant it tore away from Julia’s hands. When Yuli released its grip to defend her, it caught them between their forelegs with its claws and catapulted them at her. They slammed into Julia and the couple fell backwards into a puddle of mud. With her scrambling to her feet and Yuli’s face caked in dirt, the monster made the most of its head start and bolted.

Image: Julia viewed from the chest-up. Yuli is on top of her, hanging off of her face and obscuring her view. Both are covered in mud. End description.



Yeet lol

Aaaaand if everything goes as planned (meaning I don't end up writing more at the last minute) then the next page should be the end of chapter I! We're almost there!