GENRE: Middle-grade science fantasy
Dwyth focused and a part of his mind extended toward the giant lizard a few feet in front of him. Like a finger, he poked at the creature's brain.
Come on, you big stupid lizard - let me in!
Two hundred and fifty pounds of tough yellow skin and muscle - all of which stood perfectly still - stared back at him. It wasn't having it.
No surprise there. But there was no way Dwyth was giving up. Not this time. Of all times, not this time.
Come on, come on...
He tried to tighten his mind's extension, make it firmer so it could pierce through the thing's brain. Like he'd been trained to do and had been trying to do to animals' brains his whole life.
But it didn't get any bigger or more rigid. Dwyth grunted in anguish, his hope sinking fast, but he continued to concentrate as hard as he could.
After a minute he felt Zeph's Influence give a tug, and the beast slithered up to Zeph, who tenderly stroked its head. He'd been inside the beast's head from the start of the test, making sure it didn't run wild in Dwyth's hut. It felt like all Dwyth's hopes and dreams had been pulled away from him, too.
"I think that'll do, Dwyth," Zeph said softly.
"No - wait," Dwyth said. "Give me another chance. I swear, I got it this time."
Pity eked from Zeph's eyes.