You can find the authors and their kick ass heroines here.
As for me, no, I will not be finishing Mina’s fight with the golem… because I’m mean.
Instead, we’re going to back up to Uncommon Animals: Hunting, and take a look at one of Mina’s first fights, as told by her brother, Matty.
Sam’s lips twitched upwards for a moment. “Can I help you change?”
Mina nodded, one stiff jerk of her head.
“Mina, would the wolf please join us?”
Her eyes widened in the split second before all her bones broke, and she sank to the damp concrete. The urge to join in her hunt swept over him, and Matty almost told Rick to change him as well, but he really wanted his sister to show what she could do.
Her skin stretched as muscle and organs rearranged to accommodate the shape of a wolf. Once her fur sprouted, Mina rose to her paws with a familiar, graceful movement that brought a grin to Matty’s face.
This shape was just as familiar to him as her human one. Matty had never understood why wolves were called gray. Her head, back, and tail were bands of white and black, but her legs were a creamy yellow with ribbons of black under fur.
Mina’s head swiveled around as she tested the air with her nose. She sniffed the concrete dividers, then trotted off into the dim basement. Matty waved to the Speakers, hurrying after his sister. She stopped with a low growl that echoed through the empty basement. Rick shivered beside Matty.
The fur along Mina’s spine went erect when another growl echoed out of the darkness. In the far right corner, a flash of green eyes announced the hellhound.
Another long growl, deeper than any werewolf, rolled through the garage. Mina answered by charging. A hairless mass of muscle and scars tore out of the darkness with a snarl. It stopped in front of an oily puddle and reared up on its back legs, its massive paws clawing at the air.
Instead of testing her strength, Mina lunged for the hound’s neck. Or she tried to. The hellhound dropped on her, slamming her into the dirty water. She squealed and scratched. Matty tensed as she fought her way free.
Rick got a better grip on his ax. “Do we need another wolf?”
“She’s got this.” Matty’s voice was steady, but his feet shuffled a little. He couldn’t remember the last time his sister’s timing had been that off on an attack.
She scrambled up a stack of yellow striped concrete barricades to dance out of the hellhound’s reach. Matty’s heart pounded when he realized why her hops and jumps were erratic. She couldn’t put any weight on her back left foot.
Rick stepped forward, and Matty caught his sleeve. “Interfere now and she’ll take more than your pride when it’s over.”
The hound jumped again. This time it got her injured leg. Mina squealed again as the heavier canine pulled her down.
“Matty, we need the wolf!” Rick darted forward as Matty fell to the ground with an odd combination of relief and fear. Mina wasn’t going to like this.
The change was swift, and since a Speaker had helped, it was painless. Matty kept his eyes on the fight as he waited for his body to finish its transformation.
Rick buried his ax in the hellhound’s back before it could take another chunk out of Mina. The demon yelped as it spun around, wrenching the weapon out of Rick’s grip.
The Speaker stumbled a few steps. The hound lunged and snapped, but Sam was there swinging his ax. The hellhound danced away.
The change finished as the hound puffed out its chest, scratching at the ground. Matty darted between the two men with a growl. The hellhound backed up, snarling every inch of the way.
A second growl thundered into the dank basement. Mina limped towards the hellhound. The black and white fur around her face was wet and spiky. Bedraggled and injured, she was full of rage held back only by a thread.
The hellhound sensed it as well. The animal whirled around. Matty snapped at its haunches as it leapt onto the concrete barrier.
The hound ignored him as it ran for a higher stack of dividers. Mina darted ahead of him, limp and blood ignored as she chased her prey. Matty wished he could laugh. This was exactly like the old days.
Too late, Matty noticed the hole in the ceiling. The demon climbed through it in moments. Mina had her muddy paws on the barriers to follow when Sam called out to them.
“Let it go. We’ll track it down later.”
Mina growled at the hole in the ceiling as she started to climb.
Sam laughed. “What? Are you gonna bleed all over it?”
Her golden eyes narrowed as she glared over her shoulder. Matty suppressed a sigh when Rick took a step back
Sam grinned up at them. “Come on. Let’s change you back and get you cleaned up.