The first sound was the terrible engines, a distant susurrus that became a roar as the last light abandoned us. We waited, feeling bass vibrations through the ground, smelling filthy fumes approach. Black shapes moved against the black night, as early arrivals discharged their passengers.
My hand was resting against the rough bark of a strong young tree as I searched the black for movement. It found me first, the thud of an axe shook the wood, so close that splinters hit my arm. They had approached silently, hoping to fell the tree and be gone before we noticed.
I reached into the dark and found my target, feeling it jerk in surprise. In an instant I was inside the circle of its axe, hugging its torso tight. Fingers scrabbled at my face, they had learned that eyes were a weak spot. One they did not share. It was too late though, I stabbed my little dagger into its body over and over until it fell, still silent.
I tasted adrenaline then, and heard the whir of sharp chains beginning to spin in the darkness. The rest of the night was death and confusion, as my siblings and I groped in the dark, killed and died with these creatures we had never seen.
Finally a horn sounded. At that sign our enemy turned and ran. I tripped one, clawing my hands up its body until I found a throat. It punched and writhed, desperate to get away, but I held fast until the night became grey and the heavy body beneath me sublimed into the air.
A rare double dawn, as both suns crested the horizon together, covered the trees in red light. We slid back inside our trunks and drank it in. The forest stood. There was still hope.