This is the sequel to Seven Walls by Night and Yellow.

Chapter One

My heart is being ripped out.

I can't do anything but stare and blood darkens Lion's neck fur. Her body falls, thumps to the ground. My eyes widen, and then narrow. Rage burns in my eyes but I can't will myself to fight.

The Lord Ruler's sharp gaze scorches my pelt, "We've broken her. Who knew she cared so much?"

I blink. His words go fuzzy around the edges, twisting and turning, snaking into my mind. I turn away. Slowly. They laugh, The Lord Ruler's cackle high above the rest. Malice glitters in his eyes.

And I'm running.

"Don't worry, she won't get far," The Lord Ruler calls behind me.

Oh, I will. And you will pay for this deed. You have taken Lion from me.

I suddenly realize I'm crippled by my leg. The pain is burning through my limbs, scorching a path through my body. But I'm far from caring. All I do is run, and run, and run.

I'm not exactly sure where I end up, but I think it's far enough. The Lord Ruler must be furious.

But not as much as I am.

I finally collapse under a bush, my leg throbbing and burning. I pant heavily, my eyes shut tight. I gasp a bolt of pain flashes back up my limb. All I can think of is Lion. She's gone, forever gone. I won't ever hear her again. Won't ever see her again. Won't ever tell her...

Tell her I love her.

I bend down, my injured leg crumpling under me. A small whimper escapes my jaws. I'm not a Snake anymore. I'm just...

Weak.

The Lord Ruler will find me, and kill me. I'll be dead like Lion. Dead like everyone else who ever defied him.

Dead.

My muzzle is buried in my paws, and I let out a tiny wail. What's the point? Of living? When all it amounts to is death?

In the end it'll all be the same.

So I lay down near a cedar tree and wait for my end to come.

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