Nearby, lumbering between the surrounding brush, sting weed and rock, several grut spread out in a ring around a fine russet gelding, imprisoning the animal. Repeatedly darting and withdrawing, teasing and taunting, the grut toyed with their captive. Its eyes wide in terror, it snorted, then screamed. Coming up on its back legs, it dropped down upon the beasts, but they continued their attack. They tore at the equine’s flesh, hideously delighting in their torture. In short order, a killing grasp brought the animal to its knees. It went still.
Pulling and ripping, the grut quickly consumed the gelding’s remains, leaving only scattered bloody bones and tufts of hair that drifted in the air, then settled down upon a few travelers’ bags of coarse burlap that littered the ground, their contents tossed aside.
The smell of blood filled the air.
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