Monday, 27 July 2015

Summer Camp Writing Prompt #5

This prompt ends July 31! Head on over to Ashley's blog to sign up! You won't regret it.

This week's prompt:

Ok, prepare yourselves. This is my longest "short story" by far. Well, except for my zombie short story, which wasn't a prompt. Or my Merlin fanfiction, which wasn't a short story at all. Er, but, it's still much longer than the last four prompts were.



I couldn’t find a dragon on sale. I looked everywhere. I checked Wylie’s Winged Wyrms, Dragonz for Kidz, the pet depo over on Third, Farm Animal Suppliers, and even Dante’s Fiery Fiends. No one was having a sale on dragons.

Do you know how expensive dragons are? I would blow our budget for the next three months if I tried to buy one retail.

I pretty much gave up on finding one. We simply couldn’t afford it. Not without saving up for quite a while. And by then it would probably be too late. My heart broke a little.

Then I saw him.

He was an old man, sitting on top of a lamppost. I probably wouldn’t have even seen him, but somehow his presence was causing the NeverDim streetlight to flicker, something I’d never seen one do before.

He was sitting cross-legged with his elbows on his knees and his fist under his chin, eyes closed. He seemed to be wearing long robes which were bundled around his limbs. I thought he must be one of those crazy Medievalists, who insisted on acting like we were in the Dark Ages, just because we had dragons now. Science may have come a long way, but people were still stupid. Still, I wondered how he got up there, and if he could get down. He didn’t seem particularly spry.

I wanted to pass him by and head on home before my wife started to worry, but I couldn’t just leave without making sure he was okay.

“Sir?” I called up the post, “Are you alright?”

The man opened his eyes and looked at me. “Ah, young man.” His voice was rough and quiet, like he’d spent too many years trying to be heard over the crowd, “You will do.”

I’ll do?

The man swung his legs over the light fixture and dropped to the ground, light as a feather. The light ceased flickering, and I blinked in surprise.

“You stopped. Why?” the old man asked. His eyes were bright and clear, and they stared into mine unwavering.

I was a little unnerved. “I just wanted to make sure you could get down.”

“No, why did you stop looking for a dragon?”

Now I was a lot unnerved. I smiled the polite, questioning smile of someone who’s very confused. “Uh. . . H-how did you know I was looking for one?”

“The dragons were speaking to me.”

Ah. I was right. He was crazy. “Oh. Well, I just can’t afford one right now. But that’s alright, some other time. I'm glad you're ok.” I started to turn and walk away. I just wanted to get out of there.

“Is it? One more year, and she’ll be too old to join. You know how rare it is for the Dragon Watchers to train a child over the age of twelve. And isn’t this what little Elia has always wanted? To care for the dragons?”

At his words, my blood ran cold. I spun on the man with ferocity, “How do you know about my daughter? Who are you? Have you been watching us?” My fists were clenched so tightly they ached. Adrenaline shook my body. My eyes cast about for a policeman to call, but I didn’t see one. So help me, I’d kill this psycho if he came near my daughter, I swear I would.

“Please calm yourself, Graham.” The man held up his hands, either in a calming gesture, or to show me they were empty, “You think dragons didn’t exist before science brought them back? You think your scientists know everything there is to know about these creatures? I have lived for longer than you could possibly imagine, and I know them. They speak to me daily. For hundreds of years, I have missed their voices. Now they are back, but they will not last.”

My anger had subsided to a small degree, enough that I could focus on what he was saying. “Not last?” I couldn’t believe I was talking to him; he was insane.

“They are dying, Graham. Again. Your science isn’t enough to sustain them, not yet. But there is a way. For the past eleven years, they have spoken to me about a girl, the future queen of their race. She will save them, and they will speak to her as they have spoken to me.”

Realization fought to reach the front of my mind. “And. . . you think that’s Elia?”

The man nodded once and reached a hand into the folds of his flowing brown robes. I stiffened, on high alert, but what he brought out was not a weapon. It was a pan flute. Now I knew he was Medievalist.

“This is for your daughter.” He handed the instrument to me. “She will know what to do when she has it. She has the blood of the ancients in her.”

I took it almost automatically, but snapped back to reality when I felt power crackle though my hand. Not electricity, just. . . power. My mind reeled with a million questions. Most questions were about my own sanity in believing this man, but I had others, too. Most pressing were the ones concerning my daughter. “How? I mean, where did this ‘ancient blood’ come from?”

The old man tilted his head like he was surprised that I didn’t know. “It comes through you, Graham. Your father’s blood.”

I rubbed my eyes with my free hand. This was too much. “But I don’t even know who my father was.”

“Then why is it so hard to believe?”

I opened my eyes to retaliate, but the man was gone. I spun in a circle looking for him, but the street was empty, save for a young couple strolling down the other side of the street.

Young couple. My wife! Was she ok? Was Elia?

I ran home in record time, stopping just before my front door to catch my breath. No sense bursting into my house like a manic and scaring my family if nothing was wrong.

I smoothed my rumpled hair and entered my home, where I was immediately greeted by Joy.

“Did you find one?” she asked, keeping her voice low.

I shook my head and drew my wife close, kissing her forehead, then her lips. She was fine.

“Daddy!” Elia bounded into the room, caramel-colored braids bouncing.

I swept her up in a tight hug as I drowned in relief. They were both fine. “Hey pumpkin.” I set her down and pulled the pan flute out of my jacket pocket. I didn't know why. I just knew I couldn't keep it from her. “I got you something.”

I glanced at my wife, whose brow wrinkled in confusion. Elia didn’t seem to mind the strange gift, though.

“Oooh.” She took it and looked it over. Then, to Joy’s and my surprise, she set her lips and played three soft, airy notes, that sighed from the instrument with a master’s ease. Somehow, the notes seemed to reach beyond ordinary music, and drifted away into the darkening sky.

“How did you do that?” mother asked daughter.

“She just knew.” I murmured. Then no one had the chance to talk anymore, for a rushing sound filled the air. We’d all heard that sound before, but never so close.

Dragon wings.

I ran outside, followed by my family. The ground shook and we stumbled a little when she landed in our front yard. 

A young female dragon sank her claws into the ground to steady herself. Her scales shimmered an iridescent pink, like a rose-colored pearl.  She flexed her wings, and before they folded gracefully against her ridged back, I saw that their span was as wide as our house. She stretched her long neck out and swung her snout towards Elia, blinking star-speckled eyes at her.

I expected my little girl to be ecstatic and jump all around. I expected her to run up and pet the dragon and chatter on about naming her and riding her and signing up for the Dragon Watchers. Instead, she walked slowly over to the creature with solemn serenity and laid a hand on the scaled muzzle.

“Her name is Cerisune.” Elia informed us, rubbing the dragon’s neck with her other hand.

“That’s lovely.” Joy said, “Did you come up with that yourself?”

No, I thought, just as Elia said, “She told me.”

Concerned, my wife turned to me. I nodded and put my arm around her, leading her back into the house. “I have some things to tell you. I met a man tonight. . . .”

Lol it started off fairly silly, but apparently took a more serious-ish turn. These things do happen when you "pants" your way through a story. X) Ah, well. my last story was certainly silly enough to last me for a while. ;D


  1. O_O Wow. I love it.

    Do you "pants" your way through all stories? Because this was amazing! It's my favorite that I've read so far!

    "But I don't even know who my father was."
    "Then why is it so hard to believe?" - the "crazy" old man is making sense here, Graham.

    Are you going to turn it into novel or something? Because I want to know how she's going to save the dragons.

    1. Eeeeekk!!! ^.^ Thanks!!

      I've pantsed my way through all of the prompts so far, but for my bigger stories, I usually "plants" my way through, aka half plotting, half pantsing. I'll usually plot the basic story structure, I'll have some vague character backgrounds and a general idea of how I want the characters to meet, and I'll have a specific scene idea or two for here and there. But when it comes to the story itself, I just sit down at a computer and see what happens. X)

      Hehe I was fairly proud of myself for that bit of logic. XD

      Lol I ALSO want to know how she's going to do it. I may consider attempting to turn this into a novel. Who knows, maybe it'll be my first time reaching the finish line! ;)

    My obsession with dragons has no bounds, so when I saw this I may have been grinning and flailing like a toddler the first time they eat cake.

    The names for all the dragon shops killed me! "Dragonz for Kidz" "Dante’s Fiery Fiends" *dies*

    This idea was everything! The inside of your brain is an amazing place! (Okay, that sounded weirder than I meant...)

    Girl, you need to turn this into an entire novel!!

    1. *also flails around like a happy toddler with cake* THANK YOU!! <3

      Hahaha, they were super fun to come up with! XD

      I don't think it sounded weird! I think its super sweet and encouraging. ^.^

      Lol Maybe I will! It could be super fun. And it would be slightly different than basically everything else I've written, so that could be interesting.... :D

  3. That was amazing blew me away. You are an amazing writer the way you can create that off of one sentence. Teach me your ways, Sensi

    1. Haha thanks so much!! I didn't expect this to be quite so long when I started it. X)

      And lol well, Grasshopper, I started with one basic idea (my MC was going to go home with a dragon one way or another) that became a little bigger (someone would give him a dragon for free), which then required some explanation (WHY is he getting a dragon for free?), which led to other questions (Why does he even need/want a dragon?) which led to other ideas (its a gift! for....his daughter!), and the rest (modern-day/futuristic setting, being "worthy" to receive the dragon, summoning the dragon with the flute, "ancient blood") all just spilled out onto the page as I typed. XD

    2. That is so cool, how it all came about. So logical too, my writing is sporadic, unplanned, and slightly erratic like myself.

  4. Love it! I love how it's not fantasy, per se, but that science has "brought the dragons back". That's such a cool twist. And the Medievalists -- nice detail! This could form the basis of a novel ... (Are you writing a novel, Rachel? I feel like you may have mentioned that you are ... or not ... I can't remember ... )

    1. Hehe, thanks!! ^.^ I wasn't originally planning on turning this into a novel, but I might! I currently have an unrelated WIP that has been dormant for a while. Idk what I'll do about that. Probably shelve it like the rest. XD