by Karma Street
Feeding your dogs has never been this exciting.
| On March 15th, at six o’clock pm, I made my way leisurely down my winding driveway with every intention to feed my three dogs, like I always do around the same time. After grabbing my dingy jacket off the coat rack I walked out my front door to switch things up a bit. You see, usually I go out through the basement door because it is closer to the dog cages. Then, I walk up the driveway to go across my back-road street to grab the mail, make my way back down the driveway and into the house. Process complete, routine set right? No big deal. But not today, today I wanted to break out of my habit, nothing major of course. All I did was change the door I chose to exit from, nothing more nothing less.
So why it is that today is the day my life decided to go all hectic on me? Why this day in particular did the world decide to lose its mind? You want to know my theory? I think the universe got together with karma and decided that my days in middle school, where I had been a little hell-cat and caused mischief by doing things such as adding glitter glue to little perfect princess Cynthia’s hair after she called me miss piggy for the five hundredth time or kicking Adrian Doyle in the shin because he thought it was funny to put rotten eggs in my gym locker, needed to be paid back. Either that or somebody up high was bored and had a very messed up sense of humor.
Anyway I digress. I, Rachel Philips had been on my way down my winding driveway, ear buds in my ear, when I noticed that there were no squirrels or birds in my yard. Now, this might not sound strange to you but today was a bright, breezy day. And after one of the hardest winters Georgia had ever seen it was inevitable that the wildlife would be out in full swing. I took out my ear buds and noticed that there wasn’t a single sound in the forest that surrounded my house, not even my youngest dog, who seemed to be of the opinion that silence was unacceptable, especially when she could be bettering the world by spreading gossip with the other dogs on the other side of the forest.
But today there was an eerie stillness to the woods that sent a chill up my spine. No ruffling of the leaves, no barking of dogs, not even the gentle whistle of the wind. Not a single sound except… straining my ears I could have sworn I heard the steady beat of, something. I wasn’t sure what though.
Too slow to be the news helicopters that sometimes passed over my house on its way back to its base at…whatever news station it was from. Nor could it have been a bird because you can’t really hear bird wings unless you were up close and personal with one, and quite frankly I’ve never gotten that close or suffered from the desire to be. Just as I was running out of things to compare it too I heard this huge BOOM and the ground beneath my feet shuddered and rocked. I looked up, and up, and up some more. As I looked up, as high as I could without tipping over backward, I locked eyes with IT and was graced with a roar so loud that if I had been in its direct path, I would now be deaf, not to mention across the street in my neighbor’s field, and possible in a cow pie. Yuck!
As I regained my senses I imagined the number of ways IT could kill me. One way being it simply lifting up its paw (if that’s what they’re called) and soundly squishing me. Another involving me trying to run back up my driveway toward the afore to mentioned front door only to get burned to a meaty crisp. Ouch! And the last one I could justify taking the time it took to cook up before acting on the fear now starting to penetrate my strangely calm state entailing the IT simply bringing its large head down and devouring me whole with some rather nasty and gruesome sound effects that I’m sure no one wants to contemplate… at least I don’t.
It has occurred to me that I have yet to tell you what IT is exactly. While I’m sure most of you have caught on even with such a little amount of detail offered (including the title), or at least have an idea, I feel that it is only polite to state as calmly as I possibly can that I was staring at… a huge bloody, freaking DRAGON!!! When I say huge I mean grotesquely large, this creature was as large as a football field is long. His scales, a metallic amethyst, were so unique in color and marvelous to behold that the color could never be rivaled or mimicked. His under belly was such a deep, abysmal black that the sunlight seemed to get absorbed and then eradicated when faced with the sheer depth of its darkness. The horns on top of his head a crown to be feared in their smooth, lethal appearance, yet, nestled between those very lethal horns sat a very delicate looking jewel in the shape of a miniature dagger. His powerful body moved with a lethal grace that was encumbered only by his sheer size and the small space he had confined himself to. The wings on his back were held tightly to his body, the purple top matching his scales just as the underside matched his pitch black underbelly. The small talons on the tip of each wing only added to his lethal beauty.
And his eyes! Oh, his eyes. What a horror to behold and-- to tell you the truth, now that I think about it I have no idea what color his eyes were. I don’t even know if it was male. I assume so because of the timbre of the roar it let out but I’m not really a dragon expert so I don’t know what to look for. And you’ll pardon me if I it didn’t happen to cross my mind at the time to check for such a thing, but the color of his scales kind of throw you off as to it being male don’t they?
Because my fear was beginning to win over my mellow state I decided I should do something, anything, before it decided to do any of the horrid things I had imagined or something that I couldn’t even fathom that was much, much worse. Deciding that running up was a bad idea, down was worse, and standing still was simply idiotic I chose to run toward the dragon. Not too much brighter than the other ideas but I was running out of options.
Running full speed toward it with a war cry to rival those old medieval movies I slid under It’s underbelly and rolled sharply to the left. The dragon dropped that huge body of his and I narrowly escaped being turned into a well-rounded pancake. I noted in my adrenaline pumped consciousness that the more the dragon move the more crashing sounds reverberated within the forest signaling the fall of trees and destruction of the downed trees as he moved to discover if his attempted flattening of my oh so pretty self had been a success.
Letting out a prayer to the heavens above that my dogs were unharmed I stood up and did my best to stay just out of its line of vision I stayed behind it. As it realized it hadn’t hurt me, but had instead lost me all the way around it let out yet another roar. But where the first had sounded like a roar of triumph or a challenge to my claim on my territory (so I watch too much discovery channel, so sue me), which was just weird, this one sounded like an exclamation of frustration or relief? The frustration I could understand but why relief? It had no reason to be happy that I hadn’t been squished, I mean clearly it was here to--Ooof! Flying back I hit a tree and landed on a pile of wood chippings from a tree it had crushed when it had landed in front of me.
Okay so I admit that I had been so deep in thought that I forgot about IT’s tail. Standing up slowly because the wood chips on my hands hurt, I felt IT’s tail wrap around my abdomen, almost gently, so before it had a chance to hoist me up I grabbed one of the piece of broken tree that I had landed on. It hoisted me up high enough that I could meet its eyes. A rich golden grown, that looked so much like melted caramel that I was completely mesmerized. Growling from deep within IT’s chest, a sound that seemed to rumble up my spine and throughout the forest, the dragon’s nostrils flared. I stabbed IT in the nose with the rather large stick (stabbing the dragon in the eye seemed a little too cruel and I don’t think I would have had the stomach for it anyway).
Letting out a rather funny sounding yelp the dragon dropped me and started rubbing his nose with his paw, it reminded me of my biggest dog tried to scratch his nose with his paw, an admittedly comedic scene in a no-humor-needed situation. Picking up another stick as I made a break for it I ran up my drive way to lead the destructive beast away from my dogs. Deciding that my best course of action was to go toward the street and away from my house I turned left when I got to the edge of my driveway and headed toward the end of the street.
I had been counting on the fact that the trees that hung over the road forming a tunnel would slow him down, why I don’t know. It had shown that it could give a hoot about the environment, which contradicted all the things I thought I knew about dragons. In the books that I read they cared deeply about the environment, so much so that they would really like to wipe out the human race to save it. I had read that there were dragon wars, one faction out to protect the human race and still save the earth, the other out to eradicate humans entirely to save the earth from our catastrophic affect. However this dragon seemed to have cared less about the world’s safety and more about catching me, which sucked balls!
Reaching the bridge over the local lake I stopped and stared at the water trying to decide if what I was planning to do next was a good idea or even if it was possible. However, the sound of snapping branches and rapid beat of wings as the dragon sped towards me made the decision for me. Backing up to the other side of the street and leaning against the railing I braced my right foot on the fence. Pushing off, I ran toward the other side, locked my hands on the road rail and swung my feet over in, what I thought was, a graceful jump.
Yes, I realize that that was not the best plan of action. If I had thought about it more deeply I would have realized that once I landed in the water and began swimming he could have easily swooped me up out of the water, set me on fire with dragon breath, or simply knocked me out with his tail and just let me drown in the water that I had hoped would be my savior. Yet, I never even made it that far.
The bloody bastard caught me mid jump with that damn tail of his. His thick tail wrapped around my waist and squeezed the air right out of me. As my breath fled with a whoosh I watched as the ground drew further and further away.
Now for the first, oh say, ten to fifteen seconds I was okay, but suddenly it struck my consciousness that I was no longer anywhere near the earth. My stomach dropped to my shoes and the next thing I knew I was hearing this irritating high pitched piercing ringing as my ears blocked out all sound. Which, I guess, is lucky for me because I’ve always hated it in movies when women screamed, so hearing my own wailing as I lost control of my body and went into a full blown panic would have only pissed me off.
I twisted and turned, fighting hard to be released from the dragon’s tail but was getting nowhere fast. I kicked at the air and wriggled to and fro, slamming my fists on its scale coated tail but was only rewarded with the sight of a warning glare from this snake like eyes as he dipped his head so that he looked at me below his underbelly.
Suddenly the dragon dove, flinging me in the air, still coiled in his tail and headed straight for the copse of trees that covered the road leading to my house. As it flew rapidly toward them the dragon let out an eerie howl that sounded closely like a song. My jaw dropped as I stopped screaming long enough to realize that the trees were bending, creating a leafy tunnel of the road in response to whatever magic the beast had spun. It adjusted to fit its girth so that as we flew none of the trees even touched.
Blazing color of bright green and stunning yellow filled my vision and then suddenly there was nothing but grey, looking up I realized that the sky was cloudy, the air thick with promised rain. The wind beat at me while I was clasped in the unprotected grip of the dragon’s tail and it took me a minute to realize that I smelled salt water. Glancing down I saw the sea…and made a mental note that I lived nowhere near the sea, just before I started screaming again. The dragon began spiraling downward toward a gathering of very tall and very sharp rocks. The waves picked up speed, guided by the ferocity of the wind, and crashed on the rocks.
My captor finally got low enough that we were on the same level of the columns and began navigating through the closely seated rocks at a pace I was none too comfortable with. I was yanked and pulled in this direction and that as the beast dodged one pillar after another, only barely missing me on a few of them and I got sprayed by crashing water. The dragon navigated through the cluster successfully and we came upon a gaping hole in the largest of all the rocks. Landing smoothly the beast took a second to get its footing before swinging its tail around so that I was brought before on large eye.
If I had to give an emotion to its scaly face at that moment it would be annoyed exasperation, and I was immediately insulted. Like it had a right to be annoyed!
I was about to comment when I noticed that I was still screaming, not because I was still scared mind you, it was more of a bodily reflex at that point. So embarrassingly I let the wailing die down ending on a squeak. Satisfied the dragon uncoiled his tail from around my waist and let me down with a heavy thud.
“Bloody bastard” I grumbled it under my breath of course.
Standing carefully, I brushed dirt off my soaked clothes as best I could being that I was dripping wet and tried to understand my surroundings. The taste of sea salt was heavy in my mouth but as I looked around, desolation was heavy in my heart. In front of me was a barren cave of grey rock with too many different passageway openings for me to count on a cursory glance. Swiftly I looked to the dragon in the hopes that it would give me some indication as to why I was here only to see that the damned thing walking away from me.
I opened my mouth to call out to it when a huge crest of water came in through the cave opening. Whatever part of me that had remained dry from my trip was now thoroughly drenched as well. I let out a huff of frustration and moved to follow the dragon, leaving a wet trail of watery foot prints in my wake. Catching up to the dragon, I stayed close to its leg and tried not to let my teeth chatter from the cold drafts of wind drifting through the cavern channels. I noticed the markings on the cavern walls but was too cold to think much about them. The dragon stopped when we reached the end of the channel and I saw that is was a dead end.
“Sss--ooo--o wha-tt nn-oo-www?” Arms wrapped firmly around my body I looked up at the beast as my teeth chattered uncontrollably. It looked back at me and let out a smoke filled snort, as if to say “Watch human.” It opened its jaws and released another one of those sing-song howls, one that ricochet down that cavern channel, and suddenly there wasn’t a dead end in front of us but instead an entrance to another cave room.
Walking ahead of me the dragon moved into the room. This room wasn’t like the other parts of the cave; it was lightly decorated with plants, their blooms giving color to the endless amount of brownish grey. On the walls floated golden orbs that gave off low level light and heat, there were two to each on the four walls. The dragon circled around something in the center of the room and as I stepped in I realized that it was an egg.
The egg was black with blue veins running along its shell. Stepping closer, not really understanding why I felt the need to, I reached out to touch the egg. It was cold to the touch and my heart sank to the pit of my stomach. I glanced up to meet the eyes of my kidnapper and realized it looked at me almost expectantly, a fact that only made me sadder.
“It’s dead.” I stated sadly.
As if rejecting my words it blew another gust of smoke at me and my wet hair waved around my head. I looked at the dragon in confusion and it stared at me until it was sure it had my full attention, and then it tilted its head toward the egg, took a deep breath, and released a stream of controlled fire onto the frigid egg. My eyes grew big as I watched. Through the flames I could see the egg’s blue veins turn red as it lit up taking on the shade of the flames. The dragon let its fire die down and I was given another shock as the egg rocked back and forth, the life within it struggling to survive.
The dragon tipped its black head at me, excitement brimming in its rusty gold colored eyes. I looked between him and the egg in astonishment. The egg rocked a bit more as the heat fled its shell, before stopping completely with the loss of heat. I took a moment to reanalyze the room and it dawned on me that my captor had created its own form of an incubator. Taking a deep breath I turned my attention back to the large beast before me that had its head lowered to the same level as mine.
“So, you have a handle on it, what do you want me to do?” I asked stubbornly. I had a pretty good guess what it wanted but I wasn’t going to jump to any conclusions.
It looked at me, then the egg, then back at me. “Fix it.” Is what I got from its movements.
“How exactly am I supposed to help it? I don’t know if you know this about us humans but we don’t exactly produce molten lava in our guts.” I folded my arms, a task since I was still frozen to the bone despite the bit of heat coming from the room.
Snort. “That’s obvious. Fix it.”
“How?” I practically yelled it.
Tossing up my hands I turned and stormed toward the entrance. I’d just reached it when its tail slammed in my path shaking the whole room. I looked back at in frustration.
“You fix it.”
“Fix. It.” It growled at me, flashing razor sharp teeth
“Look,” I said, this argument wasn’t going to get us anywhere, “how do I know that once I’ve helped you, and I’m not saying I will, that you won’t eat me?”
It lifted its head to give me an even look. “I’ll eat you if you don’t help.”
“So it’s a lose-lose situation for me.” I gave it an equally even look and we had a staring contest for a long moment before it reached a decision. Pulling another exasperated look the dragon’s dagger shaped jewel began to glow, a strange lettering flowing out of it to wrap around my arm.
I stared at the band that marked my arm, its letters were pitch black but somehow they were glowing a royal purple color. Two bands of pure gold on the top and bottom of the letters made it look like a real metal band that one might wear, except it wasn’t. Suddenly I was surrounded by sharp teeth as the dragon wrapped its tongue around me, clearly planning to devour me whole when the band sparked to life and a semi-orb covered me. It knocked the dragon’s head back with a snap and I was left standing there, unharmed and confused as to what had just happened.
I stared blankly at the dragon as it gave me an even look, waiting. Then I jerked back to life, shaking like a leaf and in shock.
“Did you just try to eat me!!!” My eyes had to be as big as quarters but the dragon only turned away from me in derision. I stared at it, then at the band that had just saved my life.
“I-is this your way of promising not to eat me?” I asked the dragon who looked utterly bored and now uninterested in the conversation entirely. “How do I know you can’t just break the spell after I help you?”
It gave me a predatory smile, all teeth. Its form of “you don’t,” was my best guess. And I supposed that was all I was going to get on that promise. I sighed and shook my head.
“You need to heat this room up some more, to the same temperature as your fire. You’re going to want to keep it at that consistent level and flip it three to seven times a day, at odd times.” I glanced at the egg. “Now, I’m not promising this will work because by all rights that baby should be dead but, since by some miracle it isn’t, I’m going to assume the usual methods work.”
That was all the help I could give for the egg, since my knowledge was rather limited and what I knew was hindered by the fact that I was dealing with a dragon’s egg. I’d done what I could so while the dragon was occupied with adjusting the glowing light things, I decided it was my time to book it. Admittedly not a brilliant plan but look I was having an off day and I was desperate. I bolted down the cavern hall, trying desperately to remember which marking meant I’d come upon the exit. Gusts of wind blasted down the passage at me, surrounding me in even more cold. I reached the marked wall with the exit and used the doorway as leverage to swing into the large part of the cave. I bolt straight toward the gapping opening before skidding to a halt.
In my panicked rush to get away from the dragon before it decided to eat me I hadn’t thought my escape all the way through. Outside was a raging storm, probably the reason there had been a stronger wind in the channel than before, and even if the ocean hadn’t been throwing a fit there was no way for me to get down from the ledge without doing a swan dive into the ocean. I looked out at the storm before me and dropped to my knees. There was no land near the rocky arrangement, I couldn’t even swim to safety.
Tears welled up and I bent forward, laying my head in my lap. I was going to die in this place. My shoulders bunched up at the sudden feel of a scaly tail curling around my crumpled form. The tail slid me backwards and the dragon let out some more of its black smoke; I shivered as it wrapped around me before I let out a watery laugh.
“You keep doing that and I’m going to die of second hand smoke.” At the thought of my death and the poorly made joke I stared crying harder.
What had I done to deserve to die like this? I know that most people don’t ‘deserve’ to die in the fashion that they do but come one! Kidnapped and eaten by a mythical creature, something that no one had believed in for over a millennia? Who would ever think up something like that?
“On the bright side I should get my own legend now, maybe even a few songs that someone will get paid a penny for.” I said with a watery chuckle.
Snort. The sound made me look back at the dragon that was now comfortably curled around me. It eyed me, its rusty gold eyes glowing in amusement. I cracked a genuine smile at it when a question popped into my head, one that I had been wondering since it first showed up in my back yard. Suddenly I was depressed again. That all seemed like it was years ago and not a few hours. Shaking my head to clear it I cocked my head at the dragon, a motion that it funnily copied.
“Are you a girl dragon or a boy dragon?” I asked innocently. I refused to look in that area, it just seemed wrong.
The dragon gave me an “are you serious” look. And I didn’t understand its annoyance, it was an honest question. Since it couldn’t talk I decided to ask one and then the other to gauge its response.
“Girl?” It reared its head back in such an incredulous way that my tried brain heard “are you mad?” and put a British accent to it.
“Boy then.” I said on a tired sigh.
“Duh” A raised eyebrow from the dragon.
“Hey, don’t act like it’s an outlandish conclusion to make. In nature the female is typically the one left to care for the egg and the male goes back to its own territory after conception is assured. This,” I waved my hand around to encompass the entirety of the situation, “is just weird.”
The dragon, he, chuffed. His way of agreeing that it was a little strange for his kind maybe? And with that we both fell silent, both of us lost in our own thoughts. It occurred to me that the dragon had the perfect opportunity to eat me, with me behaving in such a relaxed manner, yet he hadn’t taken advantage of the opportunity. I guessed that he still had things he needed me to help him with in regards to the egg.
I wondered what he would do if we couldn’t bring the unhatched dragon back to life. If we did bring it back would I be forced to stay here or would he take me back home. How many years would have passed by then? We sat for so long, in companionable silence that it took me a while to realize I was no longer cold or wet, though my hair was now a frizzy mess. However, by the time I noticed I was too tired to make a real fuss over it and before I knew it I had drifted off to sleep, tucked under the belly of a dragon.
“Well, well, well, what have we here?” A hand coated in jewels and rings floated around a drop shaped orb made of water. In it an image of girl asleep on a dragon wavered.
“A dragon? Befriending a mortal? Now that is strange.” The sultry voice of a woman cooed at the water before the image changed. Now there rested an egg, surrounded on all sides by a blazing heat. The owner of the voice shifted forward from her lounging position on the chaise. She watched as the magic that formed the water drop altered to show her the future of the dragon’s egg. Before her eyes the egg cracked open, the baby in it awakening in a brilliant display of light. At the heart of the baby, on its breast plate rested a gem perfectly rounded, such a pure mix of colors it’s like had never before been seen.
“I want it.” Reaching out her hands the woman tried to grasp the perfection before her.
Turning she regarded the servant standing at her feet. “Fetch the best dragon hunters in the land.” Returning her attention to the display greed overtook her facial features. Her hands fluttered to her chest as if she beheld the most precious thing in the world. She remained there, staring at the gem for a long time, her want for it, her need, increased as time ticked by.
The sound of marching feet snapped her out of her revere of the jewel. There was a knock at her and then two males accompanied by her servant entered her domain. She turned and observed the two males; both were clad from head to toe in chainmail. They stood side by side and one was a good twenty years older than the other. The peppering of grey on the sides of his head in his once pure black hair and the creases in his worn face proved her theory. He had green grey eyes that told the tales of his weighted soul. The younger male, in his late twenties, had deep brown hair, cinnamon brown eyes with a slightly hard glint to them.
“Gentlemen, welcome and thank you for coming.” Standing she walked over to greet them as was expected.
“My lady.” The younger of the two, eager to please, grasped her hand as she reached them, pressing a kiss to her skin.
“I require a boon and I am told that you are the best dragon hunters throughout the land.” Pulling her hand from his grip she turned her back on the hunters.
“Naturally you will be handsomely compensated for your efforts…as long as you succeed.” She glided away from them before facing them once more. “So, what do you say?”
“That depends on what you require.” The elder cut off the enthusiastic response of his young partner.
Narrowing her eyes at him she gestured toward the floating image. “I need you to bring me this item.” The image shifted back to the large beast as she continued to speak. “But be careful, it will be no easy task. First you must dispose of its guardian. He old and will not go down without a fight.”
The vision changed again and before them a woman with brown skin, messy hair, rumpled strange close, and a sleeping face appeared. “She will be within the dragon’s lair and has become what we like to call a beast whore. She has been brain washed into thinking that the beast means her well, thus she will try to keep you from completing your mission. You have my permission to kill her as well.”
“If I may, my lady?” The younger male stepped forward, a beseeching look plastered on his face. “If she has been seduced by the creature, might there be some hope for her?”
“Perhaps, but such things take time to cure. More time than I wish to waste on fixing her. If you decide to persuade her away from her affections you will do so on your own time, I’ll not pay the price for your fancy.” She dismissed the topic with ease. In truth she hoped they killed the little fool but she wasn’t overly concerned for the babe.
The two males looked at one another. Clearly the idea of slaying a maiden disagreed with their knightly training. She heaved a weighted sigh and rubbed her temple, the chivalry of males could be a pain at times.
“Oh fine,” She felt her blood pressure rising at their foolishness, “take both the girl and the tiny dragonish. Bring the dragon to me and do with the girl what you will.”
“Thank you milady” said the older male gruffly, “now there is the matter of payment for our services.”
“Humph! Well I’m not paying for that so deduct it from the fee.” Snapping her fingers she waited impatiently as her servant rushed over to her with a bag filled with gold coins. As he presented her with the bag to glanced at it absently, checking its size before waving the servant away. He ducked his head and turned to give it to the two males. The older one took it, giving it a good shake before handing it off to his partner.
“You get half now and the rest when you return with my prize.” Her voice was seductive, concealing the threat that pulsed in her veins. Failure would not be accepted.
“Tis fair, agreed.” With a curt not the elder turned on his heal and exited her chambers.
The youth lingered, gazing at her longingly but seemed to shake himself after a time. Perhaps after their success she would reward the youth for his accomplishment. Her lips twitched at the thought before her attention returned to the vision of her desires, curving her fingers around the image as if to cradle it. Her door slammed shut as the two males departed.
I awoke with my entire body aching, a result of sleeping on the stone floor. Sitting up I stretched uncomfortably and noticed that I was alone. My clothes were stiff with the salty water from the day before, my hair in felt like a rats nest to the touch, and I could smell my own funk.
“Oh this is going to be fun. Like a vacation to Disney World, just chalk full of sunshine and rainbows and our favorite Disney characters.” I trudged over to the cave opening to stare at the rising sun as it peaked over the water line, lighting up both the ocean and the sky tinting it all a swirl of yellow and orange. Somehow I felt no joy or amazement when observing its beauty, not with my future balancing on such a fine line.
Shaking my head I decided that I might want to attend to my duties as the new nanny. Entering the intricate channels toward the ‘nursery’, I came upon the baby room and was perplexed when I reached the dead end door. It can’t bode well for me to start my morning in a confused state. How was I supposed to get into the chamber? I can’t do the whole dragon sing-songy thing, so what was I supposed to do?
And since I was on the question wagon, what did he want me to do with the egg? How was I supposed to help it hatch? And shouldn’t the room still be the same temperature as his fire, no way I could enter the place without being burnt to a crisp. On that lovely note I shrugged, coming to the conclusion that I was just not meant to enter the baby’s room without the dragon.
I spun around to go sit in the main cave room and was startled into a yell. I’d come face to face, or face to snout rather, with the dragon in question. He stared at me a moment and I couldn’t read his face, then he lifted his head and that was when I noticed the goat in his jaws. Blood dripped down his chin as the poor creature bled out.
“Eww! Go eat that somewhere else.” A shiver ran down my spine just seeing it. This kind of thing was so much cooler on T.V.
As if to say “I’ll do what I want,” he started chewing on it right there in front of me. Wasn’t I lucky? Granted the privilege of hearing crunching bones, bleating and the spattering of blood as it hit...wait. Bleating?
“Is that thing still alive!?” The dismay in my voice barely matched the horror on my face. Didn’t predators usually kill their prey before they started munching on it?
The dragon stopped chewing long enough to give me a bloody toothed grin around the struggling goats form before he raised his serpentine head and snapped up the rest of the goat. I watched as it slithered don his scaly neck and tried to hold on to my gag but it was too much.
I raced back to the cave entrance but push out only dry heaves as I’d had nothing to eat in about a day and a half. Tears leaked from my eyes as my body continued to try to push out nothing.
Finally my body quite pushing so I took a minute to collect myself before returning to the ‘nursery’ where the dragon had opened the ‘door’. He’d clearly dropped the heat in the room and I watched as he carefully flipped the egg over with his paw. After he flipped it he nuzzled it with that long nose of his so that it rested safely in the center of its nest. I waited for him to finish, leaning up against the doorway.
“Might I say, first of all, that I hate you.” I said to him as he made his way from the ‘nursery’, resetting the temperature level as he went.
He glanced down at me as he passed but basically ignored me. Since he seemed to be in a tolerant mood and I was pissed so I decided to jump on his benevolent mood and give him a piece of my mind.
“Second of all, what exactly do you want me to do? You have the room under control and you, surprisingly, seem to be flipping the egg like you’re supposed to. So why am I still here?” The dragon and I walker head to shoulder back toward the entrance, only he passed right by it. I’d been wondering what the rest of the place looked like but didn’t want to run into any booby traps the big guy had set so I’d tried to stay in between the entrance area and the nursery.
As I followed him we entered a tunnel that was deep enough in the cave that the sun light couldn’t reach into it to illuminate it. Unconsciously I reached out to touch him, my hand resting on what felt like his front leg. I felt the bulk of muscle flex and retract as he moved ripple beneath hard scales. I would have removed my hand but he made no sound or any move to get me off of him so I used him like a seeing eye dog to get to where ever it was he was leading me.