A Boy and His Dragon
|A Boy and His Dragon|
“A Boy and His Dragon” was written by Samuel Smalls, a moderately well-known writer of children’s tales and fictional stories. This was his first story targeted at teenagers that were coming-of-age, to be married off, or going to war. His goal was to give a coming-of-age story to inspire those children to give their lives t Unionism and know that what they are about to do is worth the sacrifices that they will have to make. After its publication, this particular story became one of the most popular fictional pieces of literature, being a common book given out by tutors and parents alike. This book was even popular among non-Ailor populations, where those that could read would read it out loud to the others in the group.
A Boy and His Dragon
I winced as the sunlight protruded through the holes within my curtains, jabbing my eyes with rays of light as I attempted to get five more minutes of sleep. That, of course, was short lived. Not long after the sun disturbed my peaceful slumber, my father stormed in the door, yelling, “Happy Birthday!” and ripping off the torn up blanket that was over my body. The fact of the matter is that, no matter the time of year or the special occasion, I would be working in the field. Even on my thirteenth birthday.
My family owned a small farm in western Daendroc, of which my father worked his entire life to afford it This particular harvest was the most important of them all as we had the opportunity to double our planting land as the plot next to ours was available for purchase.
I donned my farming gear, which still smelled wretched from yesterday’s work, and headed out to the fields with my father. Little did I know that this day was going to be different. I checked each rye crop to ensure no mites or bugs had eaten at the leaves, and my father sent me to inspect the left side. For some odd reason, when I had reached the farm’s edge I felt something, or someone calling for me. It was like someone was speaking inside my head. I looked around for any person that might be around, but found nothing.
I ventured into the wilderness that bordered the left side of my parents’ farmland and followed this urge, this sense that I had. It was getting stronger. Eventually, the forest opened up into a clearing, in which a large oak tree stood proudly in the middle. At the base of which was an egg, about the size of two Ailor heads. I rushed toward it, the sense and urgency growing with each step I took.
I knelt down to feel this egg, it was slimy, and looked almost like it was made of crystals. Then, it cracked right down the middle. I frowned, worried that I had broken it. Eventually, after five or so more minutes, it cracked once more, offering a glimpse of its contents. They were moving, whatever it was. I stumbled backward as the egg shattered entirely, revealing something I never thought imaginable. It was a baby dragon, a red one at that. I blinked once or twice, pondering what I had found, and what I was going to do.
“Hello.” I heard in my head. I blinked.
I stared at this creature in wonder; it was about the size of a large puppy, with tiny little wings that didn’t seem to be working yet. I crept back toward the creature, offering it my hand, which it sniffed.
“Ah. You are my rider.” this voice said, seeming to echo throughout the inside of my skull. I didn’t know what was going on at all.
I picked the dragon up and ran back to the house, where I found a place to keep this thing hidden, in the closet of my small room. I decided to name her Tyra.
Months passed since this incident and all seemed to be going well. I snuck the dragon food from dinner, and once it had gotten large enough, I let it go out and hunt on its own. Only occasionally would I hear that voice in my head, thanking me for food or something else. It appeared as if the dragon had the power to speak to me in my mind, though I disregarded it for a long time. My dragon, as it seemed, was growing at an unprecedented rate, from the size of a puppy to the size of a horse in just a few short months. Its wings were growing and I was running out of places to hide it.
I knew if anyone found this dragon than she would certainly be killed for her scales, or whatever the dragon hunters did it for. I couldn’t let that happen.
One day, while I was out in the field, my worst fears were realized. I worked in the farm all day, and returned home for my evening meal when I heard a loud crash and a scream. I assumed it was from my mother. I rushed inside only to find Tyra sitting in the kitchen, seeming to be waiting for dinner as well. My father also came in the same time I did, and drew his scythe, aiming it at Tyra.
I was in a tough spot, that was certain, I couldn’t lose my dragon. So I decided to try and communicate with her for the first time.
“Dive through the window. I’ll be there soon.” I thought, as hard as I could.
To my surprise I watched as Tyra obeyed, jumping through the window and out into the clearing area that surrounded my home. I ran into our stables, grabbing a saddle to put on Tyra’s back so we could make our way off.
We did just that, running into the forest, like a dragon and her rider should. My father cursed at me as I rode Tyra, who was not able to fly yet, into the brush. It was not until days later that trouble followed us once more. The townspeople had gathered at the news of me harboring the dragon and were searching the woods for us. Probably going for the kill.
Tyra and I did our best to evade them, and we did for a few days, but simply ended up with our backs against a cliff, literally. The townspeople had us cornered and were calling for the death of Tyra. The bond we had, she and I, could not be broken. So I decided that I would make a sacrifice so that she might be able to live.
I drew my dagger, the only weapon my father had taught me how to use, and told them that they will not get her before they kill me. Slight protest erupted in the group, and I took this chance to stab someone in the chest, giving Tyra time to jump into the river that was at the bottom of the cliff.
I knew in those moments that I had given my life to save an animal that my people were supposed to hate, but life is not about right and wrong. It’s about doing what you believe in. Soon after I was surrounded by armed citizens, and I felt something pierce my back, and then another, and then another. The dying man in front of me was soon accompanied by myself, who was bleeding profusely from the back.
I couldn’t move, but I was pushed onto my back, causing me immense pain. I tried to cry out, but I couldn’t. My eyes began to darken and I felt the life fading out of me. I heaved one final breath as the my own spirit left my body to join the Imperial Spirit. I had done right by my partner.
- Unsurprisingly, this story did not sell well in Anglia.