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The Cinnawarbler

Only the past holds the keys to the future

By Joshua MaggsPublished 2 years ago 5 min read

‘There weren’t always dragons in the Valley!’ yelled Prince Shortbread as he looked back at the enormous double headed dragon chasing them both through the forest. ‘You don’t say?!’ shrieked Earl Brownie as he followed closely on his terrified stallion. The wind rushed past them both as they swiftly followed the trail to the edge of the woods. Suddenly one of the trees ahead, lit up a bright orange, as flames shot through the air and narrowly missed the crown on Prince Shortbread’s head. ‘Help me!’ yelled Prince Shortbread to Earl Brownie. ‘What do you want me to do?’ he yelled back. ‘Perhaps…’ he delayed for a moment, as his heart pounded in his chest and the horse picked up speed. ‘Perhaps… SLAY the dragon?’ he screamed as another burst of flames lit up the undergrowth next to him.

Earl Brownie grabbed the small sack he had strapped to his back and brought it to the front of himself. His horse galloping as fast as it could go, as the double headed dragon picked up speed behind them as they sped over rough terrain through the forest. ‘Hurry up!’ screamed Prince Shortbread as Earl Brownie scrounged around in the sack. He quickly put his hand into the bag and pulled out a small jar. He put it up towards his face to get a closer look. ‘We haven’t got all day!’ cried Prince Shortbread as the edge of the forest drew closer and closer. ‘The cliffs edge is almost near!’ he cried as he looked back at Earl Brownie concentrating closely on the small jar he had picked out of his bag. ‘Ahh! I remember now!’ he shouted joyfully. ‘What?’ shouted Prince Shortbread. Earl Brownie could not contain his excitement. ‘The Jar of Cinnamon’ he began, speaking as if he was floating on the clouds. ‘One whiff of this and the dragon will go to sleep… how could I forget!?’.

The cliffs edge became closer and closer. The trees of the forest began quaking in horror as the two horses maintained their fear-driven speed. Earl Brownie began to take the lid off the small jar. The double headed dragon was not far behind with its four nostrils starting to smoke up with flames brewing from within. Time started to slow down. Earl Brownie slowly placed two fingers inside the jar and pinched a small amount of cinnamon between his two fingers. He turned to see where the dragon was when suddenly his horse tripped on an emerging root. The horse stumbled and fell to the ground. Earl Brownie went hurtling through the air, landing in a small shrub on the side of the track. The dragon made its advancement towards him as he brushed the dirt from his face. He quickly tried to find the jar. He couldn’t see it. It was gone. Prince Shortbread looked back and saw Earl Brownie scattered across the track with the dragon now nearly upon him. He quickly stopped the horse and got off. He ran towards the Earl. ‘I can’t find the jar!’ he yelled, waving his hands in the dirt. ‘What does it look like?’ Prince Shortbread asked as he looked up at the dragon. It was now only metres away. There was no hope left now. Smoke began to billow out of the nostrils of both heads of the enormous dragon as it arched up over them. Earl Brownie was still trying to find the little jar. ‘Is this it?’ shrieked Prince Shortbread, looking at a broken, crushed jar laying in the dirt. The dragon lifted its heads higher up, leaning backwards just enough for the fireball to catapult out of its nostrils. The rumbling from within became louder and louder as the heat radiated out of the belly of the enormous beast. Prince Shortbread looked at Earl Brownie with a look of defeat. They weren’t going to make it back to the Kingdom now. The Prince shielded Earl Brownie with his shield, as they both waited for the fire to engulf them. It was too late now. It was only a matter of seconds. They looked at each other under the shield and smiled. ‘Thank you for helping me’, Prince Shortbread said as he put his hand on Earl Brownie’s shoulder. ‘You’re welcome, your Majesty. It has been an honour to serve you’. Time slowed right down as the dragon above lurched upward, as the belly of the beast grew amber orange whilst the heat pulsated its way towards the mouth of the monster. The trees behind the dragon glistened a beautiful green as the breeze swept through ever so softly. It was peaceful and beautiful, but standing in front was the creature about to end both of them.

Suddenly, in the far distance a shrieking squeal came from above, echoing down through the clouds into the forest below. The dragon looked up, completely ignoring its lunch laying in front of it. Prince Shortbread looked up and so did Earl Brownie. They saw the dragon begin to quake with fear. It began to look more eagerly into the sky through the thick branches covering the top of the forest, trying to peer through as smoke continued to seep from its nostrils. ‘I haven’t heard that sound for many years’ began Prince Shortbread, ‘It’s impossible’. The shrieking became louder as the creature became closer. The dragon backed up; eyes fixed above. Prince Shortbread and Earl Brownie quickly got up and ran towards a large tree, and hid behind it, not knowing what was about to ensue.

A strong wind rushed down into the forest, blowing leaves and dirt into the air. The shrieking became ear piercingly loud as the wind became stronger and stronger. Prince Shortbread and Earl Brownie covered their ears and closed their eyes as the sound and wind became too strong to bear. Lightning flashed down onto the forest floor as the dragon began to howl in pain. It roared fire filling the trees with flames of orange. Suddenly a bright brilliant white light lit up the forest as the roars of the dragon echoed away. The shrieking stopped instantaneously along with the wind returning to a gentle breeze into the canopy.

Prince Shortbread removed his hands from his ears and opened his eyes. He looked out from behind the tree. The dragon was gone. It had just gone. Earl Brownie followed suite, peering out from behind the tree . They both walked to where the dragon had been standing. Four large footprints were left in the dirt. In the middle was a feather. Glistening gold and white, illuminating the ground around it. Earl Brownie looked at Prince Shortbread with a confused look. ‘It’s not possible. It’s… just, not possible’. Prince Shortbread was just as stunned. ‘Didn’t the Great War wipe out the last of the Cinnawarblers?’ asked Prince Shortbread. ‘Yes, I believe it did’ replied Earl Brownie. ‘Does that mean…’, ‘Yes, I believe it does. If the Cinnawarbler’s are back, then so are its creator…’

Fantasy

About the Creator

Joshua Maggs

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    Joshua MaggsWritten by Joshua Maggs

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