Dragon Wars: Land of Myth Chapter Four Part Nine

April 16th, 2010  |  Published in Dragon Wars  |  2 Comments

First | Previous | Chapter Index | Next

Chapter Four
Part Nine

“It still feels like we’re prisoners,” Andrew said. It was a couple of hours later and they were sitting in their assigned chambers.

“Pretty nice prison cell,” Lydia examined one of richly coloured tapestries covering the walls of the main room. It showed a battle scene; a long-haired human boy and a svart alf on one side, and a sleek black dragon with unnaturally vivid green eyes on the other. The human in the image looked a little older than them and was dressed in 1970s-style bell-bottomed jeans and a beige shirt. It was hard to tell in the stylised woven format, but something about him was naggingly familiar.

“There are people out there who want you dead,” Hreid said. “King Dariad just wants you to stay here until he’s sorted things out.” He looked over at Lydia, then at the tapestry. “That’s one of a large set which Dariad’s mother had commissioned thirty years ago, not long after he ascended the throne. She was regent until he came of age. It’s King Indirian and his heart friend.”

“King Indirian?” she asked. Hadn’t Korrig mentioned him and his human once?

“King Dariad’s father.”

“They died?” she asked.

Hreid shook his head. “No, King Indirian was selected to be one of the Core’s guardians after the dragons destroyed its old safeguards.”

Lydia was about to ask what that meant when a knock at the door disturbed them. The door opened and a guard clad in shining black mail ushered in the stone-skinned woman who’d assigned them the chambers. She was carrying a basket of alfen clothing.

“I’ve bought you some fresh clothing. I know it’s not what you’re used to, but I think it should fit and yours look like it needs laundering. No offense.” She cocked her head causing her thick braid to swing round. It looked like intricately carved quartz but it moved like real hair.

“None taken,” Karen said. “Is there somewhere I can get a bath?”

“Certainly.” Brita pushed aside a different tapestry and pressed a stylised rose carving. A door opened to reveal another natural cave with a steaming pool at its heart, large enough for several people. “There are towels over there.” She gestured to an alcove carved into the wall.

Lydia wandered over and picked up one of the towels. It was large enough but rather rough to the touch and not fluffy like at home. “Linen?” she asked.

“Well, yes, what else would it be?” Brita said.

“Don’t worry about it. Just curious.”

“Oh, thank goodness!” Karen eyed the pool with obvious anticipation. “I feel so grubby.” She looked over at Lydia. “Do you want a bath as well?”

“You will want to lock that door over there,” Brita said. “You share these facilities with the goblin delegation I’m afraid.”

“Goblins.” Lydia turned away from the pool as she remembered what had been bothering her. “What exactly are they? Not Speakers, obviously. The one who saved Bennu looked almost human.”

“They’re the children of renegades or occassionally of victims.” Brita’s voice dripped contempt.

“Eh?” Lydia said.

“They’re half speaker half dragon,” Hreid explained. “Though for some reason they breed true.”

Lydia’s eyebrows shot up. “What? Dragons are huge flying lizards, right? Like the black one on the tapestry? How the hell does that work?”

Brita snorted and Hried laughed warmly.

“Well they’re certainly fond of that form,” he said. “But no one knows if it’s their true form or even if they have one.”

“Dragons are shapeshifters,” Hried said. “It’s lucky that they feel even more distinctive than the goblins or they’d be more dangerous than they are. But when they choose to breed with speakers rather than just devouring them, they take an appropriate form – usually human. They’re as fond of human form as they are the giant flying lizard.”

“I see.” Lydia frowned to herself.

“This is all very interesting,” Karen interrupted, “but I’d like my bath now and I’d rather the males weren’t present.”


The forest had been growing thicker and more tangled for the last several hours. The canopy was so thick now that not even the occassional hint of blue showed through it. Everything was stained green by filtered sunlight. It had been several hours since they’d last found a stream for Mela to bathe in and her head should be aching at least a little by now. But somehow, the fragrant wind carressing her hair and leaf-tinged light and shadow dappling her skin seemed to be drawing the aches out of her before they even began. All the same, she looked up when she heard what sounded like a stream bubbling over rocks. She sniffed the air and then blinked in confusion. She couldn’t smell water anywhere close by – not enough water to fill a stream, anyway.

She peered between the trees in an attempt to locate the source of the sound and saw something glinting not too far in front of them.  That must be the source of the noise, and it was in the direction they were heading. They would just need to negotiate the thicket of brambles and vines blocking the path. As she thought that, she noticed the plants move out of their way. Ebona must have seen it as well because she stopped.

“Well, that’s interesting,” the rider said.

“It’s a trap?” Mela cast around mentally but couldn’t sense any speakers nearby, but then surely the rider wasn’t the only person who knew how to conceal speakers. Maybe that didn’t mean as much as she had once thought.

“Or an invitation. Possibly both.” He glanced back. “But it looks like we’re going that way, anyway.”

Mela followed his gaze and saw that the thicket had closed into an intimidating-looking wall behind them.

“What do you think, Eb?” he asked.

“I-” Ebona broke off as a dozen tiny wooden creatures, each no bigger than Mela’s palm, came flying on leaf wings from the open direction and began tugging on the rider’s cloak and her mane. “I think that if whoever is doing this is sending their imps to guide us it’s more invitation than trap.” She paused. “And if they can animate so many at once, they are a force to be reckoned with. Of course I doubt the Core would have handed the bracelet to a weak guardian.”

“You’re right,” he said. “Let’s go see who’s so anxious to meet us, then.”

First | Previous | Chapter Index | Next

2 Responses to “Dragon Wars: Land of Myth Chapter Four Part Nine”

  1. cm says:

    not one for posting much. I like this story and wait for the rss feed to alert me to the next section

    • Becka says:

      Hiya, CM,

      Thanks for thaking the time to tell me you’re enjoying the story. I hope you continue to do so.



Leave a Reply