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Heraclitoris was still savoring the taste of Salty Peters when she felt it. The first in a series of painful stings, followed by the almost-simultaneous sound of bullets being fired at her.


She spun about, and saw the one called Buck Skinner charging towards her, firing his Henry rifle at her from horseback.

"Uhnnnnnnn!" she grunted, as another bullet found its mark: "I grow tired of thesssse ssssstrange projecticlesssss that hurt me. It isssss time to hurt their ownersssss back."

No sooner had she said this than she changed into a twenty-foot tall, ape-like ogre with straggly black hair and turquoise skin!

Her subsequent roar was not only half-deafening. It also caused Buck's horse to stop short and rear in fright. This, in turn, kept him so busy trying not to get thrown from the saddle, that he was too distracted to notice Heraclitoris stomping ever closer until she snatched him up from his saddle!

Buck gazed upon the giant-sized canine teeth as she drew him ever closer to her mouth. A moment later, he could feel her breath wafting up to him. The stench was like that of a slaughterhouse during the dog days of August. So powerfully fetid, it literally made his eyes water.

Determined to deny her any pleasure, Buck drew his .36 caliber Colt Navy revolver (Model 1851), and pointed it towards his mouth.

"I hope I give you heartburn, bitch!"

Yet, it was not gastric pain that Heraclitoris suddenly started feeling. It was a recurrence of those cursed stings! Only, this time, from behind her left knee.

As she involuntarily knelt on the ground, she turned her head ninety degrees to her left. And, there, they were. Lewis Cross and Dutch Fleischer, firing their Spencer rifles as if there were no tomorrow!

This time, however, she lost the feeling in her right leg behind the knee.


To end the pain, if only temporarily, Heraclitoris threw Buck Skinner at the two ex-Confederates like a baseball!

"Look out, Dutch!" exclaimed Lewis, urging his black stallion out of the way. Fleischer, though, was knocked from the saddle of his Oldenburger like a bottle from a backyard fence during target practice!

The two men landed flat on their backs; the wind knocked out of them with a collective "ummmph."

Heraclitoris, meanwhile, had changed form once again. This time, into a winged creature that resembled a giant, featherless vulture with a large bony headcrest and leathery, bat-like wings.

Wings that it now used to pursue Lewis.

"Oh, shit," he muttered: "Giddap!"

The black stallion did not need to be told twice. It took off at full gallop, Heraclitoris just narrowly missing both horse and rider on her first pass. Screaming shrilly in frustration, she flew high into the sky.

"She probably wants to gain altitude for a second try," he thought to himself: "Just like a chicken hawk! But, as long as she's focused on me, the other two will be safe."

"AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWRK" came the scream, again. This time, louder and closer. A fact confirmed by the increasingly bigger shadow suddenly being cast over his horse.

Chapter End Notes:
I was, of course, describing a pteranodon, a few paragraphs back. But, I don't think that word even existed, yet, at that point of the 19th century.
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