I didn’t recognize the thing that emerged from the cave. It stood on muscular hind legs and was covered in hair ranging in color from slate gray to jet black. It had a barrel chest that thrust forward, like a soldier’s. Long arms extended from large shoulders and ended in meaty hands. It wore a leather breastplate and battle-skirt decorated with intricate whorls done in bright red stitching. The enormous nostrils on its face flared and it peered into the undergrowth surrounding the cave. My heart surged when its dark eyes, full of low cunning, roved over my hiding place.