Pegasus

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          When the female ogre attacked the mother Pegasus, she struck her a savage blow on the shoulder.  The Pegasus had screamed in pain. 

However, she reared up and sent her front hooves into the ogre with all her weight.  Now it was the turn of the ogre to scream.  She fell to the ground holding her head. 

Meanwhile, Dach and Yonta had dashed toward the male.  He looked between them and Isoje guarding the baby peg.  Then he heard the female scream. 

He looked back at her.  Seeing her on the ground he ran towards the mother Pegasus.  She kicked back with her rear feet and caught him a solid blow in the chest. 

He staggered but did not fall.  Dach and Yonta had followed with swords drawn.  They now spoke.  "Take the female and go now, or we will kill you both." 

The ogre did not argue or even look at them.  Using his good arm, he helped the female up and the two staggered out of the clearing. 

Dach and Yonta watched them out of sight to make sure that they did not return.  While they watched, the mother Pegasus moved toward Isoje and her baby. 

She was bleeding badly, and she was unsteady on her feet.  Isoje moved away from the baby so that the mother could get to her child. 

However, the Pegasus moved behind Isoje and used her head to push Isoje toward the peg. 

"Mother?" Isoje called out in confusion and fear.  Her mother and father turned.  After a moment, her mother said, "Don't be afraid Isoje.  The mother wants you to be with her child." 

"But I don't understand," Isoje protested.  Dach spoke in a sad but soothing voice.  "Isoje, you protected her baby.  She trusts you, and she knows that she won't be able to care for her baby any longer." 

Isoje stared at her parents for a moment in surprise.   Then she looked at the mother and saw what they meant.  Seeing her wounds, Isoje knew that no matter what they did, the mother was going to die. 

With a cry of grief, she sank onto the grass next to the peg and began to stroke it and cry.  With a groan the mother also sank to the ground. 

She nuzzled her baby softly.  The baby gave a small pitiful neigh.  The mother looked at Isoje and her baby for a moment and then she closed her eyes. 

    As Isoje sat on the ground crying, she suddenly felt her mother's arms around her, and she felt her father's hand on her head and heard him say, "You did well, Isoje.  You saved the peg's life.  Do not blame yourself for the mother's death." 

She could hear sadness in her father's voice.  They stayed in the clearing for a while, and then Dach said, "It is time we left this place.  It is a long way home, and we must be out of these woods before dark." 

Isoje rose slowly, and the peg scrambled up beside her.  However, when Isoje started to follow her parents out of the clearing, the peg stopped beside its mother and gave a neigh of despair. 

Isoje walked up beside the peg and bent down and hugged it.  "I know little one," she whispered in its ear.  "I am so sorry, but your mother is gone.  She wants you to come with me now." 

Isoje gently pushed the peg forward away from its mother.  It looked back at its mother with a desperate, sad look, but allowed itself to be led away, staying very close to Isoje's side...

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