Men were screaming and dying. Fires burned in the bay. Ships crashed into each other as men fell into the sea, arrows sticking out of their bodies.
Natan watched it from north of the city. Even so far away he could hear the yells and the clangs of weapons. He fidgeted, wanting to make his move, but he had to wait. He knew he had to wait, everything he’d learned over the last several months had taught him that.
It didn’t make it easy.
He winced as a ship bearing the flag of the royal navy was split in two by a massive ram.
Things didn’t look good. The number of ships in the bay was staggering. The heavy transports made their way towards the Blackwater Rush and their sheer numbers made it look like their landing was inevitable. They swarmed closer and closer and still the royal forces clustered near the mouth of the bay.
Then, Natan’s confidence in Asha paid off as she made her move. The royal navy rams surged forward, plowing into the oncoming transports so completely that they entangled their movement. Any effort forward met with a steel ram spilling their into the bay.
Natan watched a moment more and then saw his moment as the raiders of the dothraki fleet spread out around the mouth of the bay. He jogged back down the hill he was on and swung himself up into a saddle.
He patted the red scales beneath him. “Perzys ānogar,” the king called out, and the massive wings of Gabrella unfurled. They beat once, twice, and by the third they were a hundred feet in the air. Their shadow fell across the sea below. Eyes that had been widened by the dragons Jhakara had led out into the field nearly bulged from their sockets at the sight of Gabrella, Natan nestled between two ridges on her head.
The first swarm of ships drew closer beneath them. Natan eyed them as they turned nets and ballistas towards them.
Red flame spread the distance in a blink and a blaze engulfed the ships below in an inferno that colored everything a deep blood red in the morning light. Forty ships gone in an instant.
More quickly followed as Asha’s tact at the mouth of the Rush halted all but a few transports from making it through. The raiders reversed their oars and made for open sea as quickly as they could. Asha kept her ships close to the bay so they wouldn’t get trapped individually.
That wouldn’t stop a dragon.
Natan wheeled about and dove after them, fire pouring from Gabrella. Her roars rolled over the water and Natan was sure they would be heard as far as the free cities. They chased and burned for some time, until the city was nothing but a faint blur against the horizon. Finally, they turned back.
Bodies were being pulled from the wreckage of royal ships. Most dead. Some only wishing they were. Natan landed and got reports as quickly as he could. They had done well. There were losses, but the victory was definitely theirs.
Hours later, the cleanup was still in process and Natan helped where he could. A runner found him quickly and pressed a parchment from a raven into his hands. Natan’s eyes scanned it.
“What is it?” Arya asked, shifting their son Jon from one hip to another.
“Another invasion force was spotted in the north,” he said, looking out towards the destruction left floating in the bay.
“At least three times as large as this one.”