The only thing she knows is true anymore is that the dragon needs to die.
This is the daily(ish) posting of my 2017 NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) fantasy novel. [YANS] is short for Yet Another New Story, so it’s new worlds and new civilization ahead! Since last year worked out well, this year’s attempt will also be a combination of MuseFic and proper rough draft. The story will be completed at the end of November… even if the story isn’t really complete. 😉
Read at your own risk/amusement: There will most likely be spelling and grammatical errors afoot as well as flat out bad writing, info dumps, plot holes, contradictions/retcons, uneven characterization and pacing.
Daily Wordcount: 1,184
Total Wordcount: 47,081 (includes Title, Chapter Headers, etc.)
Day 28, Second Verse – Dance Magic Dance
“If you use the wild magic as some random deus ex machina to keep saving her life, it’s just going to annoy the readers.” Jashn pointed out.
“You’re just jealous that I have superpowers,” said Khany smugly.
“I’m a dragon!”
Khany waved a hand dismissively. “You’re a baby dragon, dragon-lite. I’m an awesome Mary Sue that is all angsty with a tragic past and everything good still happens to me.”
“Yeah… I need to fix that in the next draft.” The Writer admitted.
The wild magic grabbed ahold of the fire that played over and over in her mind, wound tight around her panicked desperation about keeping the magic away from the shadow dragon, and exploded.
All she could see and feel was the fire. It roared around her, fueled by the magic of the pools, but set alight by the wild magic. The was the faintest of shadows where the shadow monster had been, still holding tight to her leg, but trashing now. She could sense the guttural croaking roars of rotted wood and then suddenly she was free.
But she didn’t want to be free, she wanted to burn.
Even as her body twisted and stretched, torn by the magics coursing through her, she reached out for the shadow dragon and ensnared it in warping limbs of fire and fury.
And in the bonfire that Khany had become the shadow dragon burned.
“Stupid Mary Sues. What did you even need us for then??”
Khany threw a couch pillow at Jashn’s head and he didn’t bother ducking, continuing his sulk.
She awoke to the sound of the two dragons landing, to weak and disoriented to answer their frantic yelling. When they came close enough to see her and the charred remains of the shadow dragon, barely human after his magic had been burned away, they suddenly held back. She was sure why and part of her was sure they were terrified and furious about her use of the magics to win the fight.
“Khany?” But Jashn didn’t sound angry, or scared, he sounded… worried.
“Who else would I be?” She coughed out with a rough laugh, lungs seared by the fire and unable to see out eyes coated with ash. The world was a haze of shapes and colors and she felt disconnected and heavy.
“Are you feeling okay?” the town dragon was hanging back as Jashn approached, looking nervous.
“I think I’m dying,” Khany said, and closed her eyes. “Everything is so blurry, and I’m tired, so very very tired. But you’re here now. The town is safe. I don’t have to hold on.” She breathed a deep sigh of relief.
“You aren’t dying,” Jashn said losing a lot of his nervousness and now faintly amused. The white dragon walked over to her side and nudged her shoulder with his nose. He was so gentle she hardly felt it and his nose that seemed so much smaller somehow. “Come on, get up, you can pull in a little bit of the the magic safely now, you’ve burnt enough out.”
Khany frowned, trying to focus her eyes, but she couldn’t manage it. With a grumpy sigh she closed her eyes and reached out with her mind, searching for the magic. Surprisingly she could feel it around her, calmer now and weak, but slowly starting to flow back towards the pools. She asked it, half expecting it to ignore her, but some of the magic happily changed path and flooded into her.
With effort she rolled over so she was upright and tried to push herself up into a sitting position. Only her limbs weren’t quite working right. She shook her head and looked down at her hands that felt numb and oddly out of place.
Instead of hands she saw a pair of bright red claws enrobed in ruby scales and dusted with a light scattering of faint flames.
“‘Oh’? That’s the best you can do? ‘Oh’?” the town dragon snapped. “You’ve done something incredibly stupid and dangerous– something you had no way of knowing would work and wouldn’t cause the next apocalypse and all you can say is ‘Oh’?” He had moved closer and Khany looked up at him, confused.
“I did– what? I’m not sure. But it was biting me and stealing all of the magic and I just wanted it to stop.” She looked down at her claws. “And all I remember is the fire. At the screaming.” She looked over at the charred corpse. “Only now it’s dead and it’s not a shadow monster anymore.”
“You burnt all the magic out of it, so it went back to what it started as.” Jahsn snorted at the vaguely human remains and a layer of ash and soot blew away. “But whoever it was, we’ll never know now.”
“You could always ask the pools,” Khany pointed out as she tried to stand up. Even knowing she had four legs, it was a complicated process.
“No!” The town dragon snapped at her and she yanked her head back, dizzy and disoriented she almost fell over on her side again. Instead she ended up propped against the cave wall, squinting at him.
“No more pasts, no more presents, did you learn nothing from all of this?” the town dragon was furious. “This was everything that could have gone wrong.”
“But I killed it. I saved the town,” Khany said, she looked over towards the town and saw a great haze of smoke. “I did.” She insisted, haltingly.
“No you didn’t!” The town dragon snarled. “You burnt it down when you burnt the shadow dragon. Everything I worked so hard to build up is ashes and dust because of you. It’ll take months for the magic to come back enough to be useful to me and I’m going to have to start all over again.”
“There was no one in the town when it burnt,” Jashn pointed out. “And if the three of us work together we can probably refill the pools in a few weeks, not months.”
“You’re just happy because we saved the city,” said the town dragon. “You don’t care what happens to the town as long as you are safe.”
“The city can help with the repairs too, but it will take help a while to get here,” Jashn said. “If you like you can just go back and hide in your workshop and we’ll fix things without you.”
The town dragon gave him a grumpy glare and Khany shifted to look at him.
“Go do that,” she said. “Go invent things to help speed up the rebuilding process and we’ll do the rest.”
And they did. And they all lived happily ever after. Sort of.
“That was a horrible horrible ending.” Complained Dragon.
“You just say that because it’s true,” sniffed the Writer. “Come on, we’ve got plenty of words left to build up the world and then we can come back and make it not suck. As much.” She poked the soggy half-baked ending. “Yeah this is gonna need work.”