May 21 freewriting

This one is… weird. I don’t really like freewriting, never have, and I find that it’s less helpful the longer I spend on one particular session. I think that paring it all the way down to fifteen minutes saves me from absurdity that I’m not enjoying, and also keeps my freewriting posts from being too ridiculously long.

//

Shawn huffed, his bones and breath knocked loose with each slap of rubber sole against the pavement. He didn’t look back. He knew better. They wouldn’t be far behind.

On his shoulder, a feathered lizard coiled itself about him. It could have been worse. Last time, it had been a parrot with talons larger than his own fists. He still had raw red marks on his back from that one.

He turned a corner. His eyes stung as sweat slid into them. He flung himself against a nearby building to catch his breath. The lizard squawked in protest, but was not dislodged.

Overhead, clouds had begun to gather. His brow furrowed as he tried to calculate how much time he had left. But he couldn’t keep the numbers straight. The clomping of military boots neared his corner, and he decided that the ETA would have to be a casual, ‘not long now’.

He twisted round, careful to leave the lizard be–he was certainly past the point that he would be better off without than with it–and hauled himself up the building. The brick was already taking damage from the clouds. His natural ability to scale sheer surfaces was almost unnecessary. Every time his palms met the brick, it gave way like sponge cake.

“Halt!”

It was a briefer command than usual. Without stopping his ascent, Shawn glanced down at his pursuers. The clouds had done plenty of work on them already. They had started out as pale-faced, narrow men in business attire. Indistinguishable from each other and many mundanes.

They had become quite individual. One had burst his clothing to show off a blue-green carapace and claws the size of a toddler, yet remained bipedal. Another looked like a bus crossed with a dog. Shawn snapped his attention forward before one of them grew tentacles.

He was almost at the top. The lizard was growing, wrapping more tightly around his arm and spreading itself to his neck.

As he lifted a leg over the edge of the roof, two things happened. The lizard flattened into a tattoo, seeping through his clothing with a burning hiss. In almost the same instant, one of the pursuers fired on Shawn.

It would never be a gun. They seemed to go in for much nastier weapons. A thick, pointed bolt grazed Shawn’s arm. Fortunately, it was not the arm that had just received the feathered lizard tattoo.

But he didn’t believe in his luck enough to stay in sight. Lurching slightly on the softening building, he ran to the centre of the roof. The clouds had gathered to form a thick, dark entity that resembled an enormous octopus.

Then a bright spot cut into the octopus. It twinkled for a second before stabbing downwards to form a thin pillar.

Shawn skidded to a stop inside the pillar and looked up. He hated this part. But it was better than letting them catch him.

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