Tavern's Head Bartender
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|Subject: Dragon Knights (Chapters 1-5) Sun Aug 15, 2010 9:18 pm|| |
¤ ¤ Ω Dragon Knights Ω ¤ ¤[You must be registered and logged in to see this image.]§ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ ¤ §ѱ ი Chp. 1, Another Day at School ი ѱ The first thing that awoke me was the warm, wet feeling on my face.
I slowly woke up, and saw Brownpelt, one of my cats, sitting on my chest, staring at me.
Gently picking her up and putting her down, I jumped off the bed and walked downstairs.
I live with a separated family, my mom and my dad live in separate houses.
Brushing my bed-head hair out of my eyes, I look around at the cluttered house that belonged to my dad.
My dad was a repairman, he could fix almost anything, cars, computers, TVs, you name it.
He never cleaned up this house, so it's always like this, if you saw it, you'd probably crap your pants.
Sighing and stretching a bit, I poked around in the cupboards, pulling out a blue box with the familiar Tony Tiger character and Frosted Flakes spelled in huge, blocky white lettering, a small spoon, and an average sized bowl.
Opening the fridge door, I pulled out the quart of milk, checking the expiration date, 23 of March, still good for another 2 weeks, and closed the door.
I filled my bowl with Frosted Flakes and ice cold milk before sitting down at the table.
My dad came in, he must've heard me open and close the fridge door.
" Well, look who's up and running!" he said, " Morning Lex!"
Lex was one of my nicknames, my real name is Alexa, Alexa Dayton.
" Morning dad," I said, idly stirring my cereal around.
He took out a bowl and several ingredients, Bisquick mix, some milk, an egg, and a few drops of vanilla extract, and began making waffle batter.
" So, another exciting day at school!" he said, trying to bring me out of my tired state.
I took a bite of the now soggy cereal and said, " It'll probably be like every day until summer..."
I couldn't wait till summer already, my fun cousins would come over and play games with me.
They especially loved playing with the Lego catapult I assembled, and playing as the orcs that came along with it.
But for now, I'm still stuck in the clutches of elementary school.
I'm in the fourth grade, and was slightly younger than my youngest cousin, James.
The rest of my cousins, Kelly, Michael, and Dionna, they literally towered over me, they were in high school, Kelly and Michael were sophomores, Dionna was still a freshman, but still older.
My dad finished making his waffles using the new waffle iron he bought, and sat down, slathering them all over with butter and syrup.
I would've wanted waffles, but my stomach wasn’t quite awake yet, and wanted something a little less sweet, so I had chosen Frosted Flakes.
We sat there, eating in silence for a while, not saying a word, and the only sound being the ticking of the clock as the second hand counted up the time, minute by minute.
My dad finally broke the silence by looking at his watch and saying in mock surprise, " Look at the time! I have to get to work, will you be able to catch the bus to school?"
Suddenly realizing I haven't even put clothes on, I stood up, " Crap!"
I zipped upstairs, and quickly rummaged through my clothes, finding a good matching pair, my zoo animal shirt with black capri pants, and put them on hurriedly.
Quickly dashing to the bathroom, I did a quick brushing of my teeth and rinsed with that minty Crest mouthwash stuff.
Running downstairs, I looked around in the drawers, and pulled out a bottle of hair cream and a comb.
Applying the cream to my hair, I massaged it in and combed it through, now my hair didn't look like I had been shocked by static electricity.
Just in time! The bus had just pulled up in front of my house!
" Gotta go!" I yelled, grabbing my backpack and whipping out the door, " Bye dad!"
" Bye Lex! Ama will pick you up from school, okay?" he called back.
" Okay!" I yelled back, getting aboard the bus.
I turned and waved to him again before the bus doors closed.
Turning, I walked over to a seat and sat down next to one of my friends, Alice, or Allie, as I often called her, who was, and always has been, one of my best friends since kindergarten.
Only I and some of her other friends were allowed to call her Allie, and only she and some of my other friends could call me Lexie, if it was said by anyone else, there would be some arse kicking to do.
She turned and greeted me with a smile, " Heya Lexie, how're you today?"
I sighed, " Horrible, I had to rush to get ready earlier…" I plopped down next to her in the bus seat, the smell of old and familiar leather wafting up from the impact.
She patted my back, comfort and concern in her grey-blue eyes, " It'll be okay… besides, we’ll be able to hang and talk at lunch and recess."
I only nodded, brushing back my sandy brown hair with my fingers.
The bus driver yelled something before revving the engine and driving away, heading to Chapman Elementary School.
*************************************************I knew today was going to be a sucky day as soon as the bus pulled up to Chapman Elem. School.
ѱ ი Chp. 2, The Voice pt. 1 ი ѱ
Nothing exciting ever happens, just another typical, boring day.
I had to sit through several hours of sheer boredom, history, science, english, ugh....
I wish I had softball practice today, but those were normally every other day or so.
Alice wasn't even in the same class as me, and the only times I could ever speak to her or even see her were:
1.) On the bus
2.) In the hallway on occasions
3.) During lunch
4.) During recess
5.) Before I leave to go to Ama’s or softball practice
Going through class without her nearby to chat with literally was a drag.
Seconds seem like minutes and minutes seem like hours.
I had almost fallen asleep in the middle of science, when suddenly, the loud DING of the lunch bell echoed through the entire building.
I jumped from my seat and got first in line in front of the door.
Ms. Steel shot me a dirty look, then sighed and lined up the other kids, and we were off.
As we entered the cafeteria, I immediately rushed to get in line, and waited behind four other kids to get my lunch.
Today was a choice of chicken nuggets, cheeseburger, or tacos, each with a side of potato skin fries, random fruits and veggies of the day, milk of every sort...
As soon as I got my lunch, I went to pay the lady at the register, Mrs. Swineson, a pale skinned, white haired elderly lady, who smiled as she saw me come up.
Mrs. Swineson really liked me, she said I was always polite and sometimes stuck around to talk with her after school, and on occasions, she’d sneak me a free cookie when I paid for my lunch, even when cookies weren’t open to take for lunch until Fridays.
“ Hello there, Alexa, how’re you today?” she asked me, she had an incredibly sweet voice, especially for one as old as her.
“ I’m pretty good, how about you, Mrs. S?” I asked, reaching in my pocket to pull out the $2.50 I brought to pay for lunch.
She smiled even wider, showing her crooked, yellow teeth. Mrs. Swineson had bad teeth, but that didn’t faze me at all, “ I’m excellent, seeing as I don’t want to make you hold up the line, here’s your free cookie.”
She handed me a plastic wrap sheet with a piping hot sugar cookie enclosed within, which I happily accepted, fresh baked cookies were the best!
Mrs. Swineson finished the swap by taking the $2.50 from my hand, ringing up my lunch in the register, and then punching numbers in until a DING sounded.
“ All done! Enjoy your lunch and the rest of the day, Alexa!” she said, waving at me as I walked out of the lunch line.
I waved back, calling, “ Have a good day, Mrs. S!”
Once out into the cafeteria, my first thought was to locate Alice.
We always sit at our designated table, the fourth grade table, the cafeteria was originally organized based on teachers and grades. But because it was a bit too restricting, the teacher-based organization was lifted, and now it’s just based on grades.
I saw Alice's familiar dark hair, in a seat on the far side of where I was currently standing, and waved to her.
She waved back and signaled for me to come and sit next to her.
Her grey-blue eyes met mine as I walked over and placed my tray near her.
" So, how was your day so far?" she asked.
I plunked myself in the seat next to her, " Suckish, mostly listening to the teacher blab on and on about this and that."
Alice faked a surprised look, holding her head with her hands and her eyes going wide as dinner plates, " Really? Mine too!"
I had to laugh a little at that, Alice's sarcastic antics and witty quips were enough to brighten up any day.
“ So what did the mom pack for you today?” I asked, biting into a chicken nugget as I said so.
Alice’s mom usually packed lunch for her, she said buying lunch every day was too expensive (talk about a cheap buyer), but was that as bad as having to buy more lunch stuff for Alice every couple of weeks or so? Probably not…
She opened her lunch box, pulling out its contents as she listed them, “ Let’s see…a Lunchables Nacho pack, a small, prepacked salad, complete with vinaigrette dressing, a Capri Sun pouch, salami on wheat roll, and a couple sugar plums.”
Alice’s mom liked to overpack sometimes, Allie would often say, “ She thinks I’m getting ‘too thin,’ and that there’s such thing as death from being too skinny, who woulda thunk it?” before rolling her eyes.
She smiled sheepishly, “ I dunno if I can eat all this in one sitting…”
I grinned and held up the plastic wrapped cookie, “ I’ll take an offer on one of those sugar plums and give you half my cookie in exchange.”
Allie nodded, smiling, and the trade was made, she handed me one of the tiny golden sugar plums, I broke my cookie in half and gave one half to her.
“ I see Mrs. Swineson slipped you another cookie,” she said a bit teasingly, “ Guess that’s one nice little perk to being her favorite, but it’s nice that you always share.”
She was right on that, I was considered as Mrs. S’s favorite, some kids call me ‘lunch lady’s pet’ as a joke, but I ignore it, and I always make sure that when I get a free cookie, I share it with Allie.
We both chattered over stuff as we ate, ignoring the usual riotous noise of the other kids around us, and we stopped talking as the lunch period ended.
Well, at least recess was right after this, wonder what Alice has in mind for us to do today.
I must've drifted off, because the next thing you know, I'm starting to hear a voice.
It wasn't Alice's, and the cafeteria rioting noise was muffled to a low inaudible whisper.
This voice was rather high and somewhat raspy, ' Alexa...'
" Who's there?" I asked, looking around the room to find the source.
The voice came again, ' Alexa....Alexa....'
Alice's voice cut into my daydreaming, " Alexa? Alexa!!"
I came back to reality, " Huh?"
She looked at me, feeling my forehead a bit as if trying to take my temperature, " Are you getting a fever? You seemed pretty zoned out for a minute there."
I turned to her, " Did you hear it? The voice?"
Alice looked at me like I was crazy, " Voice? What voice are you talking about?"
I whispered, " I had some kind of vision, this voice was calling and calling my name, but I couldn't see the speaker..."
Alice said, " That does sound a little crazy, you sure you're right in the head today?"
I turned away and stared at my now empty tray, " Nevermind, probably the tiredness from being bored has gone to my brain..."
The bell rang again, time for recess, and then Ama would come to pick me up, sweet sweet freedom was only an hour away.
I threw my tray away, and Alice gathered up the empty drink pouch and used plastic wrap and dumped it all in the trash as the lunch crowd swept outside to the tiny playground in the front of the school.
As I walked outside, I stretched out my cramped limbs, feeling the blood rush back into them, and looked around. Kids were everywhere, on the little playplace in the center, or on the seesaw or those little animal things on spring supports that wobble about when you sat on them.
Deciding that I was too tired to do anything active, I sat at the base of the huge tree nearby, took out my Warriors: Power of Three book, and began reading.
*****************************************I flipped through the pages of my Warriors book, drowning out the noise of the kids on the playground equipment, locked up in my own little world.
ѱ ი Chp.3, Desolate Visions ი ѱ
The simply made bookmark, which was covered in scenes from various nature sites, with weird squiggly letters across it, reading out, ‘ You can explore anywhere with imagination,’ wasn’t hard to miss, and I picked up reading the sentence where I left off.
My reading was interrupted only when Alice walked up and sat next to me, reading the book over my shoulder.
" Which one is this?" she asked.
Alice wasn't as avid a fan of Warriors as I was, but she enjoyed reading the books with me when she had nothing else to do.
" It's the fifth one in the Power of Three, Long Shadows," I replied, showing her the cover.
She grinned, " Nice!"
As I read along the lines, a slight presence tugged on me from nearby, it urged me to the tree that Alice and I were sitting under.
I tried to ignore it, and focused on reading, thinking it was Danny, another one of my friends, trying to play one of his usual pranks on me.
But it lingered, becoming more and more nagging.
Having had enough, I turned my head to my unoccupied shoulder and was about to yell out, “ Danny, I’m not in the mood today!” but stopped, no Danny behind me, rather, it was coming from the tree itself.
I glanced up at the tree behind me, and looked it all over, intent on seeing what was doing this.
For a minute, I didn't see anything, until a faint gleam on one of the far right branches caught the corner of my eye.
A lengthy looking necklace hung on the end of one branch, and strangely, I could see a faint, golden aura around it, calling me to it.
Alice seemed a tad bit distracted, as she had taken the book right out on my hands while I was distracted and was skimming over the pages with her eyes.
At this time, I stood up, my hands gripped the tree trunk like a pair of cat paws, my fingers digging into the splintery wood, and began climbing up.
Alice didn't even know I was gone until she finally tore her eyes away from the book and looked over to where I had been, then up at the tree, and saw me clinging onto the trunk, making my way towards the odd glowing necklace.
The rough bark dug into my palms and fingers, but I ignored it, intent on getting the necklace.
" Alexa!" she shouted, " What the heck are you doing?!"
I didn't answer, and kept on going with uncanny focus.
Once I had gotten to the branch, a small gaggle of kids had gathered around the base of the tree with Alice, looking up at me in awe and glee, and saying things like ‘ How did she climb up that high?’ and ‘Isn’t that dangerous?’
Apparently THEY were enjoying watching the one girl wonder trying to get a necklace from a bit of an unstable branch dangling dangerously about five feet off the ground, the only ones who were truly concerned were Alice, Veronica, and Danny, I could just barely catch their worry creased faces among the crowd.
I finally got to near the end of the branch, with the necklace within a bit of an easy reach.
Slowly moving one step at a time, I reached over, trying to keep myself steady as my hand reached for the chain of the jewelry.
As soon as that hand grabbed the necklace, my other hand slid abruptly and got a splinter in it. A yelp of pain escaped me as I almost toppled off the branch, barely managing to grab it with my now splintered free hand, ignoring the stabbing pain that rushed up the nerves in my arm.
Now I was hanging, with my legs dangling below me five feet from the ground, one hand gripping the branch, and the other hand with the necklace in its grasp.
Lifting the necklace to my face, I studied it over carefully, trying to keep my other hand on the branch.
The necklace’s design was unlike any other I’ve seen, it was made of burnished bronze, diamond shaped chain links with odd, intricately carved arrowhead knobs that interlocked to keep them together, with no lock at the two ends to open it, yet it was very long, enough to slip over anyone’s head with no troubles.
In the center, the chains ended and joined at five different charms, a sword, an oval shape with a gem in its center, an odd looking eye, a tiny glass bottle that contained a flame, and, in the very middle, a very detailed dragon charm.
The sword had a golden hilt, with gilded wings, a cross-shaped hilt, a sapphire in the pommel, and covered in sparkling stuff that looked almost like glitter. The silvery blade was straight, curving into a large diamond shape at the tip, with a tall oval shaped hole in it.
The oval-shaped charm was golden and obsidian splotched, and looked very smooth, the odd sapphire gem in the center looked as if it had been freshly polished as well.
Out of them all so far, the eye was probably the one that creeped me out the most, it was deep green with a patch of lighter jade green around the pupil, which was jet black. So detailed, it almost looked real!
The tiny bottle was made out of some kind of odd crystal-like glass, and the ruby red flame inside it flickered about, as if it were indeed a living being.
And last, the dragon, which was the most intricate, each scale was individually carved out of pure pearl, as well as the tail, wing frames, head, and neck. The horns were white, like the color of pure ivory, and the wing membranes were made out of skinned tan leather.
What drew me most of all were the eyes, each made from a tiny sapphire stone inserted into the two carved out sockets.
As I looked into the eyes, they began to glow…weird, perhaps it was the light hitting it?
But the sun’s rays were blocked by the tree branches and leaves, the eyes were actually glowing! Then a flash and something like a movie played in my mind.
I was standing in the center of what looked like a barren wasteland forest, the sky was paled and grey, the trees around me were black, bent and gnarled, a lone wind blew, stirring up loose blackened dust from around my shoes.
There was a loud THUMP from behind, and gusts of hot breath ruffled my hair from behind, did I dare to turn and look?
A shiver ran up my spine, and I slowly turned around, and found myself face to face with a huge, black creature.
It’s long muzzle poked at me, the crocodilian slitted nostrils sniffed deeply, the eyeless face turned sideways as if trying to get a good look at me. Six horns crowned it’s forehead, large, membranous black wings were attached to its front legs, and paws with sharp raptor-like claws. It growled, then opened its jaws and lunged at me.
I screamed and held out my hands to try to stop it, but then the vision cleared, no more forest wasteland or creepy black creature, I was back on the tree at the playground.
Unfortunately, much to my horror, during that temporary moment of panic, I had lost my grip onto the tree branch, and the breath was knocked out of my lungs as I fell 5 feet below onto hard ground.
Pain jolted up my back, and I didn't even cry out, just lay there, limbs sprawled out and staring up into space.
The last things I saw and heard were the kids gathering around me and Alice running off, screaming at the top of her lungs for help.
Before everything faded to black, I felt hands grabbing at me, trying to lift me up, and just barely caught the alarmed faces of Veronica and Danny.
They were trying to say something to me, but I couldn’t hear them, and tried to say something to them, but was cut off as I fell into unconsciousness.
**********************************************Everything was black, I couldn’t see, feel, or hear anything, just blackness all around me…
ѱ ი Chp. 4, The Voice pt. 2 ი ѱ
' What happened?' I wondered, ' Am I…. dead?'
A soft glowing light appeared in front of my face, floating about me like a flashlight beam.
' Far from it,' a gentle, melodic voice chuckled, ' You simply have a mild concussion, that'll heal in a few minutes or so.'
The voice paused for a moment, then spoke again, ' If you were dead, we would be at a total loss… We need you, Alexa.'
" Wait a minute, how can I hear you in my head? Can I talk to you with my thoughts? How do you know my name? And who is 'we?'"
The voice chuckled again, ' So many questions, indeed! I am talking to you telepathically, I can direct my thoughts at you and you can hear them, if you direct your thoughts at me, I'll hear them as well. It's communicating with your mind, to put it simply.'
" You're a telepath?" I asked.
' Yes, all of us are, most beings haven't mastered it yet. Anyways, I know you, Alexa, because I am your guardian, I once belonged to someone very close to you, now I stand as your guardian.
And we are the inhabitants of Virtur Draconia, a magical realm much different from your own Earth, we need you, our land is in chaos.'
“ A magical realm? You mean like Narnia?” I asked, trying not to show that I was stupid.
The melodious chuckle sounded once again in my head, ‘ It is a bit like this ‘Narnia’ of yours, but the inhabitants are much different than what you expect, and it is ruled over by the one known as the Dragon Queen.’
" I see," I said,” So, do you have anything else to tell me? Your name? What this necklace means? Where your realm is and how I get there, or why your realm is in chaos?"
The voice whispered, ' Those I will reveal tonight. I will come to you in my true form in your dreams, from there, I shall tell you everything you need to know.'
" Okay, but first, can you tell me where I am now?"
There was silence, the owner of the voice was deep in thought, then it said, ' You are in bed at your Ama's house, it's been two hours since your incident at school, still afternoon, and your Ama is fixing you some food. Your concussion should be fully healed, though you will have a bit of a headache. It’s best that you wake up now... '
As soon as those words came, the darkness faded, and bright light stung my eyes as my swimming vision awakened and slowly cleared.
The sound of the mysterious voice still rang in my head, even though it was aching a bit.
I was lying down in Ama's bed, with a cold ice pack on my head, no doubt she had put it there to help with the concussion.
The smell of something delicious wafted from the downstairs kitchen, something that was all too familiar to my still waking senses.
Stumbling out of bed, I walked down the single flight of stairs, past the living room, and into the kitchen.
Ama smiled when she saw me, " Ah, good to see you're okay, Lex, that looked like a pretty painful fall you took. I told your friends you'll be good for tomorrow."
I nodded, still a bit too groggy to talk.
She placed a large green bowl in front of me, “I made Mac 'n Cheese for you in case you woke up and felt hungry."
She smiled again and turned back to washing dishes, her white curls bouncing about on her head as she hummed and her wrinkled hands worked the sponge over the dirty plates and bowls.
I grabbed the fork on the napkin nearby and began eating, contemplating over what the voice had told me.
Luckily, I will know everything tonight, who this person is, what's going on, and what this mysterious necklace that I snatched off the tree in the park earlier meant, I was only too eager to find out what all of this was to lead to.
*************************************It was about 7:30 when my dad came to pick me up from Ama's.
ѱ ი Chp. 5, Dragon Princess Safiara ი ѱ
I had stayed for dinner, but I didn't eat much, I wasn't really all that hungry after the incident at the playground.
The drive to my dad's house was quiet, he didn't speak at all, or turn around to smile at me like he normally did.
I think he was still worried about what happened earlier, me falling out of the tree and getting a mild concussion, he was probably mad at me for being so stupid.
Being sensible, I avoided speaking to him, the last thing I needed was Dad yelling at me and giving me a twenty minute lecture.
The ride was so quiet, so to pass time, I took out the necklace and studied it a bit more closely. I touched the blade of the sword, and followed along to the tip. Upon pushing my finger on it, it pierced me a bit, but wasn’t enough to go deep, and a bit of blood came out.
I quickly took it off and stuck the finger in my mouth, trying to stop the bleeding.
When it seemed to have stopped, I touched the oval charm, which was as smooth as it looked, and the gem was still polished looking, and had a mirror-shine to it, yet I could not see my reflection.
Not wanting to look at the eye, I skipped to the bottle with the flame in it. After so many hours, it STILL hadn’t died, and when I touched it, the crystalline-glass bottle wasn’t hot to the touch, nor was there any sign of melting. What really surprised me was when the fire seemed to leap in the direction of my touching finger, like a magnet to metal, going back to its original position when my finger was removed.
I dared not to look at the dragon charm again, or else that black… ’thing’ would probably be waiting for me again, and instead fell asleep in the backseat.
Must’ve slept for a long time, I didn’t even feel the car stop, or heard Dad take out the key or open his door, but when he shut the door to the driver’s seat, I jolted awake.
My dad opened my door for me, a small smile on his face as I slowly turned my neck to face him.
He may not be mad, but I'm not taking that chance.
I got out and walked inside, Dad came in, shutting the door behind him.
" Well, better go get some sleep, you have school tomorrow," he said, as if trying to break the awkward silence that had gone on for at least two hours and twenty minutes now.
I lethargically nodded, only saying, " Okay dad."
He smiled at me, then said, " Good night Lex."
I gave him a small hug and kiss, then went upstairs to prepare for bed.
Putting on my blue starry pajama tops with the pink cotton bottoms, I brushed my teeth with peppermint Crest toothpaste and washed my mouth out with Crest Pro Health.
Giving my face a quick wash, I walked into my room and climbed under the covers, pulling my soft cheetah print blanket over me.
I closed my eyes slowly, and lapsed into sleep soon after.
Blackness filled my mind again, then that same, soft white light came again.
' Hello again, Alexa,' the voice said again.
" Hello," I said, " Where are you?"
' Ah, you see the light in front of you? Follow it, it'll lead you to me.'
I said a quick 'okay' and concentrated on the light in front of me.
It blinked a bit, then flitted over to the right, and then zipped off.
I ran after it, oddly keeping pace with it, so I didn't lose it in the dark.
As I followed it, there was a huge, bright space up ahead, I quickly ran towards it.
There was a flash as the light enveloped me, then the light dimmed slightly, indicating it was still night.
I was standing on a grassy ledge, which gave way to a rock ledge.
Upon walking to the edge, I peered over to see the whole of Connecticut below, all the houses, cities, towns, rivers, everything!
City lights blinked, and moving lights indicated cars and skylights, I felt like I was high up into the heavens, which I probably was.
' Welcome,' the voice said, ' Turn around.'
Obeying, I slowly turned around and stood face to face with a huge dragon.
Rows of small, glossy white scales ran along it's delicate features, shining like millions of sea pearls or stars.
The horns were true and straight, curving only the slightest hint at the tips and bright ivory white in color, and a small row of frills ran from between its horns to the base of the neck.
It’s eyes were a deep, sea blue, I felt like I was looking under the sea just by concentrating on them, and was half expecting to see a random fish swim out of nowhere.
The face was triangular in shape, tapering to a finely pointed snout, with an elongated, serpentine neck, the torso and belly were slender, and the hips slightly wide.
The wings were white and scaled, with beige-tan colored membranes stretched between them, running down to its sides, and were folded neatly against the large shoulders.
It’s tail was long and thin, and ended in a small, beige-colored, arrowhead shaped protrusion, the belly scales were beige as well, with a slight hint of tan along the edges.
Last of all, a three pronged crown rested upon its head, gleaming in silvery grey, and encrusted with gems of various types, held on by a thick silver band that encircled it’s forehead, resting just above the brow.
The dragon extended its graceful neck and sniffed me.
' I am Safiara, Princess of Draconia and your Guardian Dragon, a pleasure to meet you. Though if it will help to please you, you may call me Safi,' it said.
Telling from the build of its body and the soft melody of the voice, Safi was a she.
" Pleased to meet you as well, Safi," I replied, reaching out and stroking the neck of the magnificent beast, enjoying the smooth feel of her tiny, pearl-like scales against my hand, “ You are a very lovely dragon, I must say…”
Something like a loud, pleasured murring sounded from deep within her throat, “ Thank you… Now, let’s get down to business, shall we?”
Focusing on me, she reached out a claw and examined the necklace in my hand, ' Ah, I remember you asked about this. This is one of several special necklaces that the Dragon Queen sends down to Earth to recruit potential Dragon Knights.
You see, only the ones who have been 'chosen' by the necklace can feel it's presence nearby, and are the only ones who can see it for what it truly is and unlock the true power within, to everyone else, it’s just a useless bauble. Each of the five ‘charms’ in the necklace’s center represents different elements of being a Dragon Knight, but I will tell you of those later on.'
I thought back to the nagging tug that kept pulling on me earlier, that's how I found the necklace! And thoughts of how the eyes on the dragon glowed and how I saw that vision… maybe that was one of the powers of the necklace?
" So, that means that..." I said, juggling all these thoughts in my head.
' You have been chosen to be a Dragon Knight,' Safi finished.
My jaw fell wide open in partial surprise and panic, “Really? But… why?"
Safi touched my forehead, ' The Dragon Queen only picks those who believe in dragons and magic, as such things do exist in our realm, those who don’t believe are outsiders, and may try to take over Draconia. The Dragon Queen doesn’t discriminate either; Dragon Knights can come from Earth, Draconia itself, and even other outside realms that we have some knowledge of.
As you have asked before, our realm is in chaos, the Dreadlord known only as Xenon is threatening to rise and destroy all of Draconia… He has amassed a great and terrible army of his loyal demons and races he has enslaved, and is spreading darkness and disease over the land. The only one who dares to stand in the way of his goals is the Dragon Queen, but even she is not immortal, and can be defeated and killed…'
“Destroy all of Draconia? Is that what that vision of the barren forest wasteland was telling me about?” I asked.
Safi gave a sad nod, ‘Sadly, yes, but that was only a glimpse into the future. That barren forest wasteland in your vision is only a sample of what is to become of Draconia if the Dreadlord succeeds in killing the Dragon Queen…’
“That’s awful!" I said, gasping, so that was what the vision was showing me, “But… how can I help to save an entire realm? I'm just an ordinary girl!"
Safi replied, ' An ordinary girl you may be, but you have the potential, Alexa, the necklace has chosen you out of a billion other humans on Earth. Not everyone on Earth, Draconia, or the outlying realms is to become a Dragon Knight, but you, Alexa, you were born to be a Dragon Knight, neither the Dragon Queen nor the necklaces ever lie.
Back on answering the many questions you asked, I believe you inquired about how to get to my realm, but it's not all that simple, really. You're a Dragon Knight, the first thing you need is the most important to all Dragon Knights and Dragon Knights to-be. A proper dragon, whom shall belong to you, whom shall only obey you, whom shall only follow you, and ONLY you.'
" But I don't have a dragon, and I don't know where to get one..."
' Ah, that's where I come in. Climb on my back, Alexa, I have something to show you.'
She bent down low to the ground, allowing me to mount her with ease.
Sitting on her back felt strangely… comfortable, and at the same time familiar, yet unfamiliar, despite the fact that I was riding bareback, I didn’t notice that I was sitting on a rather rigid part of her spine.
Spreading open her shimmering beige-tan wings, the wingspan easily dwarfing that of an albatross’s, she took off into the starry night.
She flew swiftly, pumping her wings powerfully and stirring up a lot of wind, the ride oddly smooth, I had expected it to be a little bumpy, but I held tightly to the frilly membrane on her neck for extra support.
As we flew over a complex of houses, I looked down, and instantly recognized the neighborhood where Ama lived.
Swooping down low, Safi flew over several houses, all of which had darkened windows, through a small patch of trees and over towards the lake nearby.
The lake near Ama’s house was HUGE; it normally took 45 minutes to an hour to hike all the way around it without stopping.
Alighting on its banks, she bent down and let me get off, and my bare feet touched soft grass once more. It felt weird being at the lake, as well as the added fact that I was still wearing my pajamas.
I looked around, the lake looked the same as it has always been, and I didn’t see anything out of the ordinary, “What’s over here that’s so important”?
Safi nudged me and pointed to the lake, ' Look in the lake, Alexa.'
Concentrating, I looked at the lake, trying to find what Safi was talking about.
The lake’s surface rippled a bit, but otherwise, I couldn’t see what she was indicating.
" I-I can't see anything, Safi..."
Safi turned to me, ' Come closer to me, don the necklace, and I'll lend you my eyes.'
I wasn't sure what she meant by ‘lend me her eyes’, but I followed her orders.
As I put the necklace around my neck, it seemed at first to be too long, and reached all the way down to the ground. But then, it began to shrink, growing smaller and smaller until it rested a reasonable distance away from my neck, the charms laying neatly on my chest.
Turning to face Safi, I stepped closer until I stood directly in front of her, a bit nervous yet excited all at once.
Dipping her head down to me, she touched my forehead with her nose.
' Glisi Dlsisihes sphele, sihv mes smesv rith xeseih si smi rsiith sii rili msih fihil,' the strange chanting of words I could not understand filled my head, echoing off of the deepest recesses of my mindscape and ringing loud and clear in my ears.
A sudden chill went up my spine after she spoke those words, and my vision went blank for a brief fraction of a second.
I was about to scream, I couldn't see! I had gone blind! What had she done to me?
Safi's voice sounded in my mind speaking in a nonchalant tone, ' Stay calm, Alexa, wait a moment...'
The scream froze in my throat, and I quickly swallowed it back down.
How could Safi have sounded so calm? It was as if she had done this before, but I was still blind! But I stood stock still, and suddenly, a tiny window of blurred light came into my sight.
Slowly, little by little, my vision returned, muddy at first, then became sharper, and I calmed down, that was a relief, I thought I had permanently lost my sight.
When I had regained my vision, I found that it was a little...sharper than normal, no, scratch that, it was a LOT sharper than normal. I could see things that I couldn't normally see with my vision!
I was able to see the tiniest creatures, like a line of marching ants in the grass nearby, similar to looking at them through a microscope!
I could see trails made by the stars as the Earth slowly revolved, and I could see the deep craters on the Moon!
" How?" I asked, " How can I see all of these things?"
' You are viewing the world the same way as I do with my draconic perception, everything is sharper and clearer to us than to most creatures, it is only temporary though… and this is only through ocular perception, to put it simply, you are only seeing what I am able to see.
Now, look at the lake again.'
I looked again at the lake, and my jaw fell open for the second time this night.
This is insane… I was actually looking through the murky, mud colored waters as if they were crystal clear, and could see the small schools of fish and the plants growing at the muddy bottom.
A small golden glint caught my eye, and I looked over in that direction.
There was a gold and obsidian splotched oval shaped object resting on the bottom of the lake, half buried in mud.
" A dragon egg..." I gasped in awe.
Safi nodded in approval, ' Yes, that egg is the first thing you need to become a Dragon Knight, for you, and only you, can see it.
The Dragon Queen cloaked each dragon egg she sent to Earth, Draconia, or the outlying realms in a special magic, only the chosen Dragon Knights can see them with the aid of their dragon guardian and the magic of the necklace.
The next step is to get the egg, you'll have to swim and retrieve it from the lake bottom, that is the egg’s trial for you, are you ready?'
I looked at the egg, that was what held my dragon, the egg was the key, the first step to becoming a full-fledged Dragon Knight. Getting it would be easy, I mean, have you ever seen me at the pool in the summer? I swim like a fish!
" I'm ready," I said, confidence and determination strong in my voice.
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What does life mean to you?Friendship is: with the strong bond you share, there will always be someone to care.
Charity is: Kindly acts for those in doubt, rewarded by warm feelings, knowing that you helped them out.
Beauty is: Not to be appraised by outer look, not to judge by the cover of a book.
Grace is: The very essence that is wholly amazing, from of your love, I am gratefully praising.
Bliss is: Laying in the grass on a warm summer's night, watching the fireflies above me with their cheerful glowing light.
Honesty is: An honest affinity with one whom I can trust, without any lies or taint of lust.
Love is: Holding the hands of the one I dearly love, and enjoying the life I am a part of.
Praise is: Thank you, Lord, for the world I live in, and for all the faith and love you've given.