The Dragon’s Quest for Hopper starts off as any other low brow elf seeking a real place in life. He didn’t think the real place would be babysitter to a dragon. Part of him wishes the dragon mother decided on eating him instead of shoving him into this new role. What was he thinking getting involved with Linda or Hartliebe or thinking he deserved more in life than running a beer company. Beer is his life. Or it was. His life now seems a lot different. And scary.
Genres: Adventure, fantasy
Pete and Dominik
The first person we see upon reaching Kristen’s house is her father. “Hey, Pete.” I stop the cart just beyond his reach. My arms have burn marks now, but I was not knocked out since I tried to touch it. “How’s the interrogation?”
“Kristen’s tired.” He sighs looking into the house. “I assume it is going less than well.” His eyes turn to our keys. “I can see the mountain again. I’m surprised you guys managed it.”
“Dragon.” Cyro points to himself. “And he’s my friend.” The grin has my heart skid to a stop. Will we actually use the term friend? Not babysitter or servant as we have in the past?
“A dragon’s friend, huh? Does that mean he carries the blood? I heard only dragons can be friends of dragons.” Pete looks between us.
It would probably be noticeable embarrassment if I was not covered in burn marks. My face from his breath and the rest of me from the key. I shift my feet a little though, hopeful my nerves hide behind the injuries.
“He is.” Cyro nods resting his key on the ground while leaning on it. He has control of it enough that it doesn’t attack, but he hasn’t managed to use it properly yet. He tried. The battles where he tried took longer and were more difficult for me. “But more importantly, he has held up against tough situations. Dragons care more for well versed and well handled than blood. We can always make you a dragon. If you earn that option.”
Pete chuckles sitting down on a bench outside the house. “I heard it takes a full hundred years in dragon service before you can even start the ritual to become a full dragon. And those rituals normally take a hundred years.” His eyes gaze over me. “He’s started?”
“Yup.” Cyro nods.
I take a step back. I started the ritual to become a dragon? A real dragon? But that means… Which part? When did I start? Did joining the horde make me start? Using magic? Or was it when I… I suck in a breath. I started on purpose back when I was in school. We went over dragon lore about the rituals. I just wanted to back then. It didn’t seem to do anything, so I forgot about it. Did that work? Wide eyes turn to Cyro. The dragon continued his conversation with Pete, so he is clueless as to what my mind runs on. “When?”
“When did we last have a full moon?” Cyro pulls back. “Last night, idiot. I pointed it out and everything.”
That’s true, but not my question. “When did I start my dragon ritual?”
“Don’t know. It began before I showed up. That’s part of the reason I asked you and not your friend. Who was that girl again?” Cyro taps his chin thinking.
“That was Linda. She should be Lord Linda now.”
“Claimed by Mother, then.” Cyro nods looking at Pete. “Mother could probably put it into a time. Even a place. I cannot do past-present-future stuff yet.”
“You are a baby dragon, huh?” Pete chuckles at Cyro’s lack. He glares as only children do. “Think of it this way, Dragon Cyro. You far outweigh your friend and will for a long time.” He motions to me, then taps his own chest. “And I will never even be part of a horde. You will always outweigh me.”
“That’s true.” Cyro sighs picking his stick up. “Let’s go make Kristen happy.”
“Sure.” I push the cart to the door. It will fit through the doorway. This was how it was taken out of the house. Someone thought it through before stealing it. Given the other option would be death, intelligence would be much desired. “We’re back!” The call comes with the door slamming behind us.
Jeremy slips into the room easily frowning. “Welcome back. And with the two keys. How does Mount Nugget look with them gone?”
“Normal.” I look at the keys in our possession. “How’s the thief?”
“Troublesome. Kristen will be out in a moment after she locks him up. She’ll have a safe spot for the keys until you are ready to go.” Jeremy leaves through the door he came in.
“I guess we wait until she shows.” I collapse on the sofa. “I will want to hit up those hot springs before moving to the next stage. Full healing will be required before starting the trip to the isle.”
“Terrick Isle.” Cyro sits down across from me still holding the stick like it might blow up the house. “I can’t believe we are so close.”
“If you want something, keep running at it. It’s only been a few months of running, er, flying, but you’re much closer now.” I stretch glad to be done with this particular leg of travel. “Another month and…”
“Yeah. Sooner rather than later.” Cyro closes his eyes resting. “It hasn’t been too long since you joined me, but everything came together since you did. I’m glad to have you on this journey.”
“Uh… Thanks?” He shrugs at my gratitude. That’s okay. Part of me believes this is better than running the beer to and fro and gathering ingredients. If only I could see my old friends. I wonder how they are doing.