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The Battle For Metagore - Deleted Scene

Winter had started to fall upon Alberon, and Lord Moll'ar decided to go to the fields and enjoy one of his many passions—hunting. Though it was winter, snow rarely fell upon the capital or even the majority of the kingdom; but in some of the northern regions—Fairflank, Kiden Hill, and the edges of Willowgate and Redthorn—snow had already started to fall, sprinkling the amber colored grass with a faint layer of white powder.

Moll'ar crept through the wild fields of Redthorn—the frozen grass crunched under his thick boots made of baku leather and fur. Tied around his back, hanging by its antlers, was a small jackalope he had killed earlier in the day. Around his waist was a belt—on one side hung a knife in its sheath and a small hatchet hung from the other, and from the back hung a rope bundled up tightly.

He inhaled deeply through his nose—the chill in the air seemed to rejuvenate him as his green eyes gleamed with excitement. The morling could almost feel his animal spirit awake within him as it could sense the hunt upon them. It was an energizing feeling that made his adrenaline start to rush.

He followed the complicated trail before him. The divided grass, pressed down in places as a herd of achlises moved through the field. Prints of hooves—along with lines of something being drug—were noticeable on the snowy ground. To a new hunter unaccustomed to hunting achlises, they might follow the trail incorrectly, thinking they should treat the tracks like they would with a catoblepas or a heardbeast. Unlike most game, achlises tracks always went in both directions, because they weren’t able to graze like other animals—they had to walk backward while they ate as their anatomy and large upper lip made it impossible to feed moving forward.

Moll'ar looked over the cluster of tracks—estimating about ten in the herd. He knelt down by some of the lines made by the dragging of one of the achlises' stiff back legs. He noticed how the snow parted away from the track—the ridges getting deeper as his eyes followed them to his right. A smile grew on his face as he knew the direction the herd was moving. He stood to his feet and perambulated the trail—crouched, trying to stay hidden in the remaining weeds.

After following the tracks for about a hundred strides, Moll'ar could see the herd off in the distance grazing on some of the grass poking through the thin layer of snow. The animal spirit inside of him seemed to become ecstatic at the observation as his heart rate ramped up in his excitement. He paused with his approachment and unstrapped the jackalope from his back, then laid it on the ground.

Moll'ar looked back at the herd of caramel-colored achlises as a grin grew upon his face. He started to prowl towards them, and his animal spirit took over as he morphed into his canine form. As he approached, he picked up speed to a full sprint until he was right on top of the herd.

The herd of achlises was startled by the foo dog approaching them. They tried to flee, but without having any joints in their back legs, it made the task very difficult. Moll'ar pounced onto the closest equine, sinking his sharp fangs into its neck, while he dug his claws into its hide—trying to hang onto the unfortunate creature as it collapsed to the ground. The canine jerked his head to the side, ripping a chunk of the achlis' neck from its body—the warm blood dripped from Moll'ar's mouth as he spat the meat out and changed back to his elven form.

He grabbed the achlis by the antlers and drug it towards a nearby tree. He grabbed the rope from his belt and unraveled it, tying it around the achlis' throat. He tossed the line over a large limb of the tree, then hoisted the dead carcass up until its hind hooves dangled above the ground. He tied the other end of the rope around the base of the tree’s trunk.

He grabbed his hatchet and hacked into the achlis, just above the groin. He pulled the weapon from the hide, then flipped it upside down—digging it back into the previous gouge. He pulled the blade up, cutting from the groin up to the sternum—penetrating the hide and the membrane beneath it.

Moll'ar laid the hatchet in the snow, then grabbed his knife from its sheath. He reached inside the carcass and removed the guts—cutting them away from the spine with the knife. After removing its innards, he wiped the blade off in the snow, returned it back to its sheath, and picked up his hatchet. He hacked it into the creature's pelvic bone and cut around the hindquarters—removing them from the creature's body.

He cleaned the blood off the hatchet and untied the carcass from the tree. He wrapped the rope around the achlis' body a few times—making sure that its opening was closed to prevent grass and dirt from getting inside the body. He hauled the creature back to where he had previously laid the jackalope and attached the two ropes together. With the remaining slack in the rope, Moll'ar made a body harness for himself to drag the animals behind him. He morphed back into his foo dog form and sprinted back towards the city—bringing with him his kills of the day.

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