Aurelia made the first move.The white dragoness reared, slamming down in front of her with ground-shaking force. But Big Grey was quicker— he dodged to the side, calling his pack to him with a howl as Aurelia charged forward. The wolves danced around her, just out of reach of her jaws, moving as one flowing entity. Aurelia lunged forward with a swipe, catching a wolf in her claws and sending it into a nearby tree in pieces. The scent of the battle’s first blood filled the frigid air, but the blood dripping from her paw was sickeningly warm.
“You shall die alone, Winged One. Fall here, and lament the isolation of your wicked kind!”
The snow settled, and the pack of wolves charged as one towards Aurelia, a river of fur and fangs, seeking her doom. Their final attack.
Time slowed to a crawl.
Aurelia closed her eyes, seeking the magical energy within her core. She was by no means adept at magic... But every dragon could breathe elemental fire. The familiar tickle of sparking ice welcomed her, and energy surged through her bartered body, causing her white scales to glow.
The wolves were mere inches away.
Aurelia snapped her eyes open.
She opened her mouth, and pure blue flames exploded forth, sizzling and hissing as the magical heat incinerated all before her, piercing through trees and boulders alike. Fur melted from bone in an instant, and bone turned to ash. The wolves that had not been directly hit by the blast of dragon fire fell where they stood, whimpering as the snow comforted their burned, broken bodies.
It was a gruesome sight. But the battle was over.
Aurelia inhaled slowly, calming her magic, smoke rising from her nostrils. She was covered in blood; from both herself, and the wolves. It mixed, and dripped steadily onto the ground, echoing faintly in tune with her breathing.
Big Grey was still alive. Half of his body had been destroyed, though. Aurelia approached him, and his remaining amber eye shook with misery as it darted around, seeing the ashes of his brethren.
“D—Don’t think... You’ll get away... With this...” he wheezed. “The Lupine... Will not... Ever... Evil...... Aether......”
His words descended into gibberish until he drew his final breath, body stilling.
Aurelia was filled with sadness as she turned away, taking off into the sky and leaving the macabre battlefield behind to return to the quarry.
All the way, she could not forget the scent of blood on fresh snow.