Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/2019010-The-Dragon-and-The-Phoenix
Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Fantasy · #2019010
Two youths must work together to survive the wilderness.
Word Count: 2,500
Used all three prompts

They said it would work...

The oldest son of the oldest family of the Dragon clan, Draco, stared into the fiery green eyes of Blaze, the oldest daughter of the oldest family of the Phoenix clan. Their chaperones looked on in apprehension as the two sized each other up. The future of both clans was riding on their union, but ultimately it was up to the two youths to decide if they could tolerate each other. They would be spending the next few days and nights in the wilderness alone. The hope was that they would develop a bond from being forced to rely on each other for survival, but given their obstinacy neither chaperone saw this as a successful venture. Dante, Draco’s chaperone, stepped forward. He rested a hand on his young master’s shoulder.

“You do understand the importance of making this work?”

“I know my place,” Draco stated solemnly.

Flair, Blaze’s chaperone, eyed Draco and Dante over her young mistress’s shoulder. Both women possessed the red hair and green eyes common to women of the phoenix clan. Draco and Dante possessed the dark skin, eyes, and hair of the Dragons’. The two chaperones reluctantly handed the reins of pack horses to Draco and Blaze. Each horse carried a bed role, and enough food and water to last the night. The youths would be responsible for finding shelter and other survival necessities.

“We will meet you here under the next full moon,” Dante reminded them. He slapped his fist to his broad chest in solute of his future leader, and offered a bow to Blaze.

Flair embraced Blaze, and inclined her head respectfully to Draco. After the two chaperones departed Draco led his horse into the forest. Blaze followed, and they were walking side by side in a matter of moments. They walked silently for a while, listening to the sounds of the forest and their footsteps.

“How old are you?” Blaze inquired.

“I have seen eighteen season cycles,” Draco answered.

“As have I,” Blaze nodded.

In their world a season cycle was the transition from warm to bitter cold. The year changed each time the cold season ended and the hot season began anew. Their little excursion into the forest was taking place during the final moon cycle of the warm season. The temperatures would be cold by the time they returned to their chaperones. If all went well they would be wed during the first moon cycle of the next warm season. If the two youths found themselves incompatible the clans would move on to the second oldest children of the opposite genders, and try again. The couple would separate, and be free to choose life partners of their own. That is how this tradition should work in theory. However, Draco and Blaze were the only children in their family lines. The others died throughout the years from famine, war, and disease. These two were the only hope for maintaining the tenuous bond between the Phoenix and the Dragon clans. It should not have happened so late in their lives, but the Dragon leader was reluctant to agree to a union with the Phoenix clan. His clan had always been isolated from the others. It was a blessing because it kept them out of clan politics, but at the same time it also limited their ability to refrain from incest. The leader of the Dragons agreed to the arrangement only because the Phoenix clan was originally started by a family that had once belonged to the Dragon clan. Draco and Blaze both knew the history of their clans, and they knew it was up to them to propagate their clans’ alliance. Up until this point the two never saw each other. As they walked they each took the time to study the other.

Aside from his dark skin, hair, and eyes Blaze noted that Draco was quite tall and muscular. She decided being alone with him in the woods for a moon cycle would not be so bad. Rumors were going around that Draco was proud and fool hearty, but he did not seem to be at that moment. When he looked at her his eyes held a mixture of curiosity and mischief.

Draco found her quite lovely. She moved with the grace of a sinewy body, and her travel clothes could not hide the female shape of her. He caught himself imagining cuddling under blankets with her on the colder nights they would face. His hand rested over the growing arousal in his breeches. Blaze saw but did not let on. They continued walking until the sun dipped below the trees.

“We should find a place to camp for the night,” Blaze stated.

They stopped at the next clearing, and hobbled their pack horses. Blaze pulled a bow and a quiver of arrows from the back of her back horse. The arrows’ plumes were phoenix feathers. She slung the quiver on her back, and strung the bow.

“What are you doing?” Draco inquired.

“Getting ready to catch dinner,” Blaze answered. Her tone implied that he asked a foolish question. In the Phoenix clan men and women hunted together. It did not occur to her that other clans functioned differently. When her bow was strung to her satisfaction she turned, and took a step toward the woods.

“Hold on,” Draco called. He moved to stand in front of her. “We cannot leave this place unguarded.”

“You stay then,” Blaze suggested. “I will bring back enough food for both of us.”

She moved to step around him, but Draco rested his hands on her shoulders to hold her in place.

“You stay,” Draco insisted. “I will go hunt.”

“Why, because you are the man?” Blaze challenged. “I am quite capable of hunting my own food.”

“Of course you are,” Draco smiled slowly. He knew women from the Phoenix clan were a lot more self-reliant than those in his clan. He also knew they were proud. “Animals are easier to overcome than people.”

“You think I cannot defend myself?” Blaze challenged. Her eyes were green flames in her pale face. Her body gave off a fiery aura that would have made any other man flinch. He surprised her when he allowed her fiery aura to travel up his fingers, and outline him.

“Dragon,” he reminded her. He leaned in, and pressed his mouth to hers. His tongue slipped between her lips as she gasped in surprise. As their tongues entwined he added the dark red fire of his own aura to hers. He slid his hands down her arms, and shifted her bow from her hands to his. “I will hunt. You will finish setting up camp.”

Before she could protest any further he plucked one of the phoenix feathered arrows from her quiver, and sauntered off into the forest. Blaze busied herself with the tasks of setting up a fire pit, and laying out their bed rolls and blankets. She set Draco’s bed on the opposite side of the fire from hers. Just because they kissed did not mean she was going to just give herself to him right away. She was digging for her flint and steel when Draco entered the clearing with a wild pig slung over his shoulders. Her arrow protruded from its eye. Draco set the pig on the ground beside her. Blaze twisted the shaft of the arrow, and dislodged it from the eye socket of their dinner. Draco pulled a knife out of his pack horse’s saddle bag. He watched with amusement as Blaze struggled with her flint and steel trying to spark a fire.

“Would you like to see an easier way to do that?”

“I can do this.”

Draco smiled and knelt beside the carcass of the wild pig. He leaned over, pursed his lips, and blew a thin stream of fire on the base of the wood in the fire pit. The flames licked over the dry kindling. Most women would have been terrified by the sight of a human breathing fire, but Blaze felt her body respond to the fire breather in a different way. Draco straightened and sliced open the pig from jugular to groin. Blaze watched as he skinned the beast, and removed the uneatable organs. Once it was prepared he skewered it and set the skewer on two large branches Blaze set on either side of the fire pit. When the skin of the animal was crisp Draco used his knife to cut out a chunk of the cooked flesh. He plopped it onto the clay plate Blaze held. Blaze used her dagger to cut the meat into more manageable chunks.

“You could have used your own fire to ignite that wood,” Draco observed. “Why did you try to use the flint and steel?”

“Magic is a short cut,” Blaze stated. “If I can do things without it then I am not dependent on it.”

“You tried to use fire to get me to let go,” Draco pointed out.

“I was angry,” Blaze admitted. “I thought you were under estimating me.”

“It is true that women in my clan are more dependent than women in yours.” Draco fed himself another chunk of the tender pig meat. “I was not expecting you to try to go off hunting right away.”

“I was hungry,” Blaze stated.

“Can you trust me to feed you?” Draco asked. He offered her the chunk of his meat on the tip of his dagger.

Blaze looked at her plate, and discovered that it was empty. Her stomach clutched with hunger for more. She leaned forward and took the chunk of meat from Draco’s dagger between her teeth. She cut another chunk of meat from the animal with her own dagger. She cut it into manageable pieces, and offered one to Draco from the tip of her dagger. He took it though he still had meat on his own plate. Once they ate their fill they used the spices in their supplies to cure the remaining meat. Blaze settled into her bed. Draco sat on his, and sharpened the knife he used to clean the pig.

“You are awful far away over there,” he commented.

“I think we should spend a bit more time together before we start sharing a bed roll,” Blaze smiled at him. The fire reflected in her shining green eyes.

“You could have put your bed roll a bit closer to mine,” Draco posited. “I would not climb into yours unless you invited me.”

“Perhaps, some other night,” Blaze yawned. She rolled onto her side so that her back was to him and the fire.

That night the two shared a dream. A black dragon and a red phoenix soared through the air together. The creatures mated, and the phoenix laid her egg in the dragon’s lair. Draco and Blaze awoke aroused and reaching for each other.

After a breakfast of sausage from the pig they ventured further into the forest. Their goal was to find an uninhabited cave to hunker down in until the moon cycle ended. Most nights they would spend outside, but if there was a storm they wanted to have the cave available for shelter. The cave they found was not big enough for them to spread out the way they had in the clearing. As planned they spent most of the evening outside under the stars, but eventually the evening air took on an unpleasant chill, and rain became a part of the evening ritual. They moved into the cave, and laid their bed rolls side by side. Draco built a blazing fire, and they hung their clothes over it to dry. Blaze huddled under her blankets trying to keep warm. Draco pulled her under his blankets with him.

“This would work better if our bodies were pressed together,” he whispered.

Blaze stared up at him, daring him to attempt to unwrap her blanket. Draco smiled, and pulled her close; blanket and all. They shared the same dream of the phoenix and the dragon, and awoke with their bodies pressed against each other. The only thing between them was Draco’s manhood. He leaned in to offer a soft kiss good morning, and gave a startled grunt when she pressed against him. Her fingers fisted in his dark hair when he attempted to pull back. He released her mouth but rested his forehead against hers. He had a fist full l of her hair as well. His other hand slid down her smooth side, cupped the back of her knee, and hitched her leg over his hip. It was a guess at who moved first, but in a matter of seconds they were one. Their auras surrounded them, and red and orange coils of twisted flame wrapped around them. The flames burned their most radiant heat as the two reached the height of pleasure, and then flickered out in the afterglow. Two blackened forms lay entwined in the center of a large scorch mark that used to be their bed rolls. Their eyes opened, and they stared into each other. Draco rubbed at the ash on Blaze’s face to reveal the smoldering skin beneath.

“Out of the ashes you rise, my lovely phoenix,” Draco breathed.

The steady patter of rain outside drew his attention. He lifted Blaze into his arms, and carried her out of the cave. He stood in the rain holding her while the gentle shower washed and cooled their smoldering skin. Blaze wrapped her arms around his neck, and kissed him.

“Will you lay your egg in my lair?” Draco inquired softly.

“Yes my dragon,” Blaze rested her head on his shoulder.

When their bodies were clean and cool Draco carried Blaze back into the cave. He knelt, and laid her on the stone floor of the cave. It was still warm from the fire they created. He hunted while she rested, and returned with two large stags. He was careful to skin them so that the hides remained intact. After their meal they became one on a bed of deer hides. They were careful not to get carried away this time. They spent the rest of the moon cycle in the same way. On the night of the full moon they met their chaperones dressed in skins of the animals they killed together that day.

“I will miss you my love,” Blaze sighed. She pulled his head down for a tender kiss good-bye.

“Six moon cycles will pass faster than you realize,” Draco assured her. “Until then you will have a piece of me with you.”

He caressed the smooth skin of her flat stomach. She laid her hand over his to hold it there. The two chaperones exchanged knowing smiles as they parted ways. Flair giggled when Blaze informed her that her wedding gown would have to be adjusted to accommodate her future bulk. The elders of the clans said this would work, and it turned out they were correct.

© Copyright 2014 Vixey Todd (jlh1982 at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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