Rebecca turned over and winced as a pain snaked though her limbs that she could not ignore. She tried to rise but a soft touch forced her to stay down. Her eyes flashed open, no longer alone in her dank cell.
"Do not be afraid, I will not hurt you," a voice assured. Soon a face came into view. Rebecca took note of the longer ears this female creature possessed. "You're not a wolf," Rebecca said. "No," the female said, "I am a jackal, and a captive like you. My son and I were taken a few days ago. I woke here without him. Please, if you know where they are holding him, tell me, I beg you," she cried. "I'm sorry," Rebecca said. "If I knew I would tell you. I know how it feels to ache for your child. It is unbearable not knowing if they're OK. The wolves hunt for mine. They think their kicks and bites will drive me to reveal her whereabouts." She laughed and smiled but it faded just as quick. "But I become stronger the more they hurt me. Well, at least my resolve is strong." "Your body will heal, human. I will attend to you like I did for your Tomas." "You are the one who helped him?" Rebecca asked. "And the reason why I'm here. But I cannot imagine why they would take my son," she said on a sob. Rebecca touched the female's arm. "They average two attacks in the span of ten days but I know a way to get their attention. I will inquire of your son's whereabouts. It is only natural for them to brag about their deeds in the name of the King." As if on queue, the outer door chains rattled and released. Guards appeared with daily rations. Rebecca forced herself to stand and face them. "Tell your King, I request an audience with him!" She spat. The guards laughed. "Better you stay here, little human. My brothers enjoy the taste of your blood on their tongues. King Ulvarg's revenge is only tempered when you bleed. You may not survive the next circle." Rebecca knocked their food trays aside, sending food all other the wolves. "I will see him now!" One guard shifted on the spot and lunged for her. The other guard knocked him aside. "Stop! The human will get her chance in front of the King and then you will have your fun." ### Paloma sat alone in the damp cell, trembling. She rocked in place and kept her hands over her ears but it could not dampen the echoed screams of the human woman.