Why couldn't they meet somewhere civilised, instead of in the middle of nowhere. Even his imp had gone to sleep. Armani snorted and gurgled inside Steve's pocket. He woke with a splutter.
"Trouble's coming, boss." There was an edge of panic in his voice as he struggled out.
Ambush, thought Steve. He was supposed to hand over the rare book to a member of Lord Lothar's court. He felt very exposed as he glanced up and down the moorland track.
"Hello, meat." Out of nowhere a tall, rangy figure appeared, scruffy and unshaven with ragged jogging bottoms and a thin t-shirt. "You have a book for me."
Steve felt in his pocket. "You don't look like the messenger of an elfen lord."
"Werewolf." Armani hissed in his ear and flew off.
"I'm offended." The thin man bared his teeth in a fake smile. "I'm what you would call freelance. I can get a good price for that book. Hand it over."
"I don't think so." Steve found what he was looking for in his pocket.
"Brave words for a lonely place." The werewolf smirked.
The werewolf was enjoying this too much, thought Steve. He extended his hand in his pocket. "Just a minute." Then he punched the werewolf hard on the jaw.
Steve had come prepared and the silver knuckle dusters fitted easily on his hand. He wasn't prepared however for the hiss and the stench of burned flesh as the silver bit into the werewolf. It staggered back, clutching at its blackened face. Steve followed up with a hard punch to the side of the head and another, then a kick to the sternum as there werewolf fell onto its knees clutching at its damaged head.
The kick didn't do enough damage. Steve's training and gym work were useless without the reinforcing silver and the werewolf rolled away still clutching its head. To Steve's horror the werewolf flowed and suddenly there was a large wolf like creature in front of him, its fur matted, its ribs showing and its head burnt and blackened.
Steve swore as the creature swung round at him. Desperately he punched at the great head snapping at him. I must not let him bite me, Steve thought frantically, I have to stay away from the teeth. Armani was hanging onto the werewolf's back, his dirty claws sunk deep into the creature's flanks. A part of Steve was impressed by the sparks the imp was shedding as Steve managed a lucky punch to the throat.
Then Armani flew up and a second werewolf landed on the skinny attacker and bit hard down on the back of the neck. Steve watched in horror as the skinny, dog-like shape flowed back into a dead, skinny, battered man. The attacker also flowed back into human form.
"Steve Adderson, do you remember me?"
"Yes," Steve worked the knuckle duster from his sore hand. "It's Carl Armstrong, isn't it? I recognise you even without your clothes."
I'm using these prompts as a kind of gym for writing, and I loathe writing action scenes, so I thought I would have a go. An action scene in 500 words was really, really hard, so worth doing. Carl Armstrong is a minor character in my novel 'The Forgotten Village' which is free from Smashwords if you are interested (though I used Carl here as a werewolf character I had used in previous Steve Adderson stories - and the Steve Adderson story so far is here if you are interested). I hope you don't mind me mentioning it, and I hope you enjoy the story.