"I would not want to live in a world without dragons, as I would not want to live in a world without magic, for that is a world without mystery, and that is a world without faith." ~R.A. Salvatore from "Dreams of Silver"
Written for the Matthew Fromm High Fantasy Challenge (500-word limit). Win prizes!!! Find all the details here.
From the fortunes of evil kings to the misfortune of their people, whispered foretellings of the dragon return resound in all corners of the world, but none now live who have ever seen one… except for me.
I am Torella, last to hold the mage-light of House Meisengrad, royal house of the Dragon Lords.
The grandniece of Meisrob the Great, recently carried the last of that line. If male, he would be inspected for Dragon Sign, and I alone know the signs. Lady McSwain travailed in birth. Her son entered this world with his back to it and in so doing, emerged unto the passing of his mother.
Cleaning and swaddling him, I discovered a small cluster of silvery scales behind his ears that shone like pearls in the dim light of the birthing house. I softly ran my finger over them, and the child opened his eyes. There, a silvery gaze greeted me, and I knew that I beheld the first of the Dragon Masters.
Not wanting to risk his demise, I whispered a sleeping spell. As fortune would have it, neither he nor his mother cried out in birth, so no one questioned whether he lived or not. Placing him in a basket, I made my way from the village into the wilds. The shield of nightfall was my ally. Traversing miles of moor and forest, I returned to the lands of the Dragon Kin with only the stars as my guide.
Soon, we would be amongst our people, celebrated and protected. As I gave him a celebratory kiss on the cheek, he made unsettling noises, his eyes waxing silver. Seconds arced by until the sky swirled into darkness, and the baby’s growling became soft humming.
Suddenly, the very sky teemed with black dragons. I’d never seen a dragon that color. Their hordes believed mankind to be beneath them.
The front dragon dove, silver talons sinking into the ground before me, nearly knocking me down. The valley filled with the grey mist of their breath, and I clutched to the baby for dear life.
A voice, almost too terrible to comprehend resonated within me.
“Behold little mother! We come to pay homage to the Dragon Son. Give him that we may see, and pledge”.
Unsure what he meant by “give”, I turned my shoulders to keep him safe.
“Now, woman!” the voice shouted inside of me.
I lifted the babe up, and he sniffed at him. The combination of air, heat and sulfur pushed me back, as he swooped into the air, and I internally heard them saying that the Dragon Master had come. As far as the eye could see, dragons landed in the valley of Ringmoor outside the watchtowers of Meisengrad, kneeling before a newborn king. As they arrived, so too did the Dragon Kin.
Say I unto you; the dragons return and with them, the last of the line of Dragon Lords, and the first of the Dragon Masters!
This idea came to me when Vocal had the Fantasy Prologue Challenge about a year ago. I was unable at the time to get this down below 1,950 words, but having spent the time and effort on Vocal honing the craft and trying to marry a solid voice with word constraints, I've learned a lot. So this has undergone a MASSIVE rewrite for this challenge, and during all of this process in the past year, I have even been dabbling in creating my own artwork, so this actually has a fresh image. Reading it now, I'm thinking it would make a good prologue and might have a more fulsome installation coming! ;)
POST SCRIPT> WHY ISN'T THERE A FANTASY COMMUNITY ON VOCAL?
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About the Creator
I'm a mild-mannered project accountant by day, a free-spirited writer, artist, singer/songwriter the rest of the time. Let's subscribe to each other! I'm excited to be in a community of writers and I'm looking forward to making friends!
Very well written. Keep up the good work!
Easy to read and follow
Well-structured & engaging content
Original narrative & well developed characters