Tag Archives: fantasy

Dragon Hunter

The city had burned; there was nothing left but ash. A shadow swept across the landscape as a dragon soared overhead. Ari looked up as it disappeared out of sight over the mountain range. He heaved a great sigh, he had been too late, again. He sheathed his sword and started out to survey the damages.

 

The charred remains of a building scattered when he made contact with the toe of his boot. Bending down he gathered the ashes in his hands, the grittiness coating his fingers, a sharp, tangy smell hit him, flooding his senses. Northern Grey backs probably, judging from the amount of destruction and the size of the one he had just glimpsed.

 

Contrary to popular belief, not all dragons breathed fire. Among those that did, heat was a relative thing. A diamond tailed horned dragon, for example, was all bluster, lots of smoke and fury, very little flame. Northern Greys, on the other hand, were fairly deadly. Very little smoke, a cry as innocent as the bleating of a doe. But their fire burned almost as hot as the sun. Which begged the question, what were Northern Greys doing this far south?

 

Everness had been a large city, a bustling center of trade and commerce. Dragons usually kept a lower profile than this. It was the third city of this size burned to the ground that he had come across in as many months. Something was very, very wrong. Dragons had been hunted almost to extinction centuries ago. Most places he went, they were regarded as fairy tales. The creatures had a vested interest in keeping it that way. So why the unprovoked and frequent attacks on high profile cities all of a sudden? Three large, well known cities, in three months all within the same region. That was definitely going to be noticed.

 

Ari gazed out over the landscape as smoke curled up and climbed into the sky, insects and birds eerily silent. He closed his eyes and brought up his other senses, focusing on the mountain the Grey had disappeared over. He stood in silence as the sun sank down behind the mountains, shadows stretching out across the remains of the city. He was unaware of the passage of time as he used his extra senses to survey the mountain range and what it was hiding. A soft breeze danced through the ruins and night had fully fallen when he finally opened his eyes. He knew what he had to do. It was time for the people to know the truth.

Fairies in the Forest

She chased the cat out of the woods and across the field to the edge of a ravine. She stood now, staring down into the abyss. She knew she wasn’t suppose to leave the confines of the woods, but Chara had run away and she was wanted to catch her and bring her back to the house.

As she stood staring into the chasm, she understood why her mother had been so insistent that she not leave the woods. Her mother hadn’t wanted her to know about the drop off. She knew that it would be too much for Elizabeth to resist.

Elizabeth was an explorer and she loved to climb. There was no way she could ignore this ravine now that she’d found it. The urge to explore was like a fire burning inside her that she could not ignore. This was something that she was born to do.

She glanced around then quickly scurried over the edge. She shimmed down the embankment like a billy goat! She was a natural born climber and she had started climbing the trees in the woods almost as soon as she could walk. Her mother still told the story of the time she had searched everywhere for her only to find her on the roof when she was four years old.

Elizabeth knew her mother worried about her, but she had no reason to. She practically stuck to the side of the ravine as if she covered in glue. There was no slope too steep and no tree too high. Climbing is what she did best, after all!

Reaching the bottom more quickly that should have been humanly possible; she dropped to the ground, brushed herself off and stood to look around.

She stood in a lush valley, the growing things so green it was like an emerald carpet spreading out in every direction. It was like another world.

The faint sound of music drifted across the valley and she set off to find its source. Coming to a sparkling blue stream, she stopped to sit and watch the water for awhile. Suddenly she realized that she wasn’t alone. She was surprised, but not afraid.

Turning to her right, she silently regarded the woman perched on the rock next to her. She was dressed all in green, from the leaves weaved in her hair to her soft velvet shoes. She looked kind and Elizabeth could have sworn she saw a gossamer set of wings flutter out of sight just as she turned to see her.

“Hello,” The green woman spoke, “What are you?”

“I’m a girl” Elizabeth replied as this were a perfectly reasonable question, “What are you?”

“I’m a fairy.” The women said as she cocked her head and studied Elizabeth intently, “I’ve never seen a human girl before.”

“I’ve never seen a fairy before,” Elizabeth replied, “I thought you’d be smaller.”

The fairy let out a tinkling sound of laughter, then she dipped her foot into the stream and kicked a shower of water up into the air. Elizabeth giggled at that and stuck her hand into the stream to splash her own spray of water into the air.

Giggling now, water flying, the coldness sharp and shocking yet exhilarating. Elizabeth shrieked in laughter as she tore around the bank, splashing her new friend and dodging sprays of water sent her way.

Shaking the water from her body almost like a dog would, the fairy smiled dazzlingly at her and winked as wings popped out and she flew straight up into the air! Elizabeth got so excited that she forgot, for a moment, that she herself couldn’t fly. Jumping straight up into the air after the tinkling sound of fairy laughter, Elizabeth felt something pop out of her own back and realized with a start that she was still in the air!

Wings beat at her back, the vibration odd yet somehow vaguely familiar. She tried to turn to look at them and found herself turning in circles. She stopped before she could get dizzy, then darted straight up, then forward, then stopped to hover again.

Turning in midair, she saw the fairy regarding her, mouth agape.

“You said you were a girl! A human girl!” The fairy accused.

“I am! I was! I mean……….” Elizabeth trailed off. She had no idea why she should have wings, her mother had never mentioned such a thing.

Her mother! Elizabeth zipped straight up in the air in surprise! She suddenly realized how much trouble she was going to be in when her mother couldn’t find her in the woods.

“I-I’m sorry, I have to go!” She gulped as she turned and literally flew through the valley back to the wall of the ravine. Straight up she shot, tumbling over the edge and crash landing in the grass above. Chara, her cat, still sat at the edge, licking a paw as though she hadn’t a care in the world.

Elizabeth grabbed the cat and made a mad dash back toward home, hoping her mother hadn’t noticed her absence yet. She had.

Her mother stood at the front door, hands on her hips, foot tapping. She had a long suffering look on her face. She was a mother all too use to her child running off willy nilly into the woods, completely oblivious to her mother’s worry.

Her expression turned from one of annoyance to utter shock in about two seconds flat. Elizabeth halted in her forward run toward the cabin to look around her for the source of her mother’s shock. Turning in a circle, she remembered her new wings.

She looked back at her mother, denials of wrong doing on her lips but her mother did not yell at her. Instead, the shock faded into resignation.

“Come inside Elizabeth,” her mother said, “we have a lot to discuss.”

 

 

The Tree

There was a door in a tree. In the middle of the woods, amongst all the normal looking trees, stood a tall oak with a door in the middle of the trunk and a light hanging off the side. You know, so you could see the door if it was dark.

Why on Earth it was there and what it could possibly lead to was another issue entirely. She stood staring up at it in contemplation. Should she go in? There was very little chance that she wasn’t going to go in, to be honest. She had to know where it went.

Drawing in a deep breath, she made her way up the little path that seemed to open up in front of her. There wasn’t a path as such, no sidewalk or anything to mark an actual path, just less undergrowth, an absence of obstacles to get there.

Reaching the door, she turned the knob and it swung open with a slight screech. Peering in to the dim interior, dust floated by and there was a slightly musty smell.

“Anybody here?” She called.

No answer.

Stepping inside, the air seemed to brighten a little, sunlight filtering in from a small window, up high, that hadn’t been visible from the outside. The door squealed again as it swung shut. She jumped a little, but really, what had she expected?

As she made her way further in, the room seemed to widen and lengthen. The brightness grew incrementally as she walked tentatively forward. Warmth filled the air from a fire that crackled comfortingly in the corner of the room. A plush chair was situated just in front of the fire.

Well, why not? She perched in the chair, suddenly aware of a robe draped across it. Snuggling into it, she found it soft, warm and just her size. She looked to her right and noticed a staircase twisting it’s way up and up, it seemed to go on forever.

“What is this place?” She whispered out loud.

“It is whatever you want it to be.” Came the reply.

She jumped and looked around for the source of the voice. There was a little man, with huge ears and feet, no taller than a five year old but obviously aged. He gave a slight bow.

“Who are you?” She inquired.

“I am your guide, should you choose to explore.” He answered as he handed her a fluted champagne glass. “Drink and this world shall open up to you, but I must warn you, time moves differently here. Be very sure this is what you really want.”

She reflected for a few minutes on her life. The job that wasn’t going anywhere, her lack of a love life, her insatiable desire for knowledge and adventure. It was the easiest decision she had ever made in her life.

She took the champagne glass and drank deeply.

The Truck

The truck hummed suspiciously in her driveway. Clara regarded it thoughtfully. It was a rather large truck, white, with lights on top. But how had it gotten here?

Clara didn’t own a truck and she had never seen this one until it appeared in her driveway a moment ago. The hum was suspicious mostly because trucks didn’t really hum. They rumbled or purred or something more apropos of an engine. This sounded more like something electric.

The truck looked mostly normal, with blue lights pulsating from under it. The windows were tinted so dark that she couldn’t see inside, even the front windshield. That was certainly odd.

She reflected that she should probably be afraid, or some other normal emotion that one might have if an unearthly sounding truck appeared in your driveway out of nowhere. But then again, she really wasn’t a normal person.

She became aware of her oddness at a very early age. When she knew what people were thinking without them having to speak, when people she wanted just showed up at the door, because they felt compelled to and when toys she saw on TV and wished for just appeared. But she hadn’t wished for this truck so what was up with it? Why was it here?

There was a soft click as the door swung open. An inhumanly tall man with a bluish tint to his skin stepped out. He wore a suit of soft, glittery silver, all one piece. Those were definitely antennas coming out of the top of his head.

“Hello Clara.” She heard in her head, though he had not spoken out loud.

“Hello.” She thought back at him, still far more curious than afraid.

“My name is Alto and I’m here to take you to the induction ceremony.” He sounded so matter of fact, as if she had been expecting him.

“Induction ceremony?” She probed.

Was that a sigh she heard inside her head?

“You are being inducted into The Intergalactic Society for Gifted Beings,” he thought at her, “you didn’t receive the welcome packet?”

“Uh…no.”

There was another sigh, this one distinct and thoroughly long suffering.

“So hard to get good help these days.” She heard him thinking.

“Well, get in or we’re going to be late,” He told her, “I’ll explain on the way.”

Mirror, Mirror

“Mirror, Mirror on the wall” she joked.

“Yes Mistress?” Came the reply.

She froze. Did that really just happen? She turned back toward the mirror, its surface shimmering now in a way it hadn’t before.

“Umm…………” she was at a loss as to how to proceed.

“Did you have a question mistress?” the mirror asked.

“Yeah, why do you call me mistress?” as soon as the words left her mouth she realized there were at least a dozen more relevant questions she could have asked. Starting with, how on earth the mirror was talking.

“Because you are my mistress,” it answered, “you have fulfilled all three requirements, you have physical possession of the mirror itself, through which we can communicate, you have the power to summon me and the ability to scry.”

“Scry?”

Did she hear the mirror sigh?

“Yes, mistress, scry, the ability to see visions in reflective surfaces such as water, glass or obsidian.”

Well she had to admit that her interest was piqued now. This overly large and ornate mirror had been left to her by her grandmother. It had arrived on her doorstep, with a simple note attached.

“For Esmerelda, who holds the power.” She hadn’t understood it then but it was starting to make a bit more sense.

Ok, so scrying is one thing, but this mirror is talking to me, she thought to herself. Out loud she asked, “Who and what are you?” Yes, that was definitely a more sensible question. She had about a million questions about her grandmother now, but one thing at a time.

“Let’s just say that I exist in another dimension and this mirror serves as a portal for the purposes of communication for those who have the eyes to see and the ears to hear.”

She wasn’t sure if the mirror was being overly simplistic or outright cryptic, she was sure the mirror didn’t mean physical eyes or ears. She was equally sure that she wasn’t living in a fairy tale; this was rural Texas for the love of Pete! Well, she might as well play along. What could it hurt? Maybe she was on a hidden camera show!

She leaned forward and reached out to swipe her hand across the mirrors surface. It responded, the surface shimmering as if she had disturbed a pool of tranquil water. Through the shimmering surface she could just glimpse the other side, just glimpse her future.

 

 

 

Flight

I had always known I was special. People always treated me differently, even my parents. I never knew why until one day when I was nine years old. I stood in the middle of my bedroom, facing the bank of windows that dominated the east wall of my upstairs bedroom. There, along the top of the row of windows hung dozens of stuffed animals, out of my reach.

Stretching my arms up and out, I focused on the one I wanted and out loud I said, “Come here!”

In amazement I watched as the stuffed bear detached itself from the wall and floated lazily down and into my waiting arms. I turned to find my mother watching from the doorway. She didn’t seem surprised.

Later that day, I overheard her on the phone telling someone that “The experiment is working.” I had no idea what she meant. It wasn’t until much later that I figured out she had been talking about me.

I began to move small objects first, retrieving a book or a pencil without getting up from where I was sitting. Eventually I moved onto larger objects, like moving the couch without touching it so my mom could vacuum under it. I kept my friends entertained for hours moving objects they requested.

Eventually we figured out that I could move my friends themselves. It was fun until I accidently dropped Jimmy Watkins into a pile of lumber and he broke his arm. It was an accident, but after that most of the kids weren’t allowed to play with me anymore.

Without my friends around, I practiced on myself and found that I could levitate! I went out in the front yard and practiced and practiced until I had it down so well it was indistinguishable from flying. I could fly! This was fabulous and I whiled away entire days flying around my neighborhood.

It was fun until one day I flew too high. I don’t know what happened but it was terrifying. At first, it was fun, I was soaring! Then, as I got really high, it was like I could feel the earth letting of me, gravity gradually subsiding. That wasn’t the scary part; the scary part was when I felt something very much like gravity pulling me the opposite direction, up! The higher I got, the stronger the pull and I felt myself zipping up, up, into space, the air was getting thinner and the earth was rushing away from me. I was in a state of pure panic, struggling to get back. I fought and thrashed my arms around like I was swimming, trying to thrust against the force pulling me upwards.

Finally, gradually, I was able to push myself down a little, then a little more. Eventually I passed some kind of threshold where the force of gravity pulling me toward earth became stronger than the force pulling me up. The problem with this that I began to fall, truly fall. I was plummeting toward the ground, heart pounding, sure I was about to be squashed. Again, I thrashed my arms around like I was swimming, this time pushing against the ground that was rushing up to meet me. I managed to slow myself enough that I didn’t splatter when I hit but it knocked the breath out me.

I lay on the ground unable to breathe or move or scream for what felt like an eternity. Petey Grayson from across the street rushed over and was staring down at me with wide eyes yelling my name. I couldn’t answer at first. Finally, the air rushed back into my lungs in a huge, gulping, gasping shudder. I sat up, panting and sucking in air. Something had tried to take me and I had no idea what it was or when it might strike again. This though kept me grounded for months but eventually the urge to soar through the air was too great to deny.

My mother was hysterical when she heard the story, I overheard her sobbing to my father that, “They are trying to take him from us!”

I didn’t know who she meant until one night about a year later when I woke up to a soft pulsating glow coming through my bedroom windows. I ran to the window that overlooked the front of the house and there right outside my window, hovering just over the roof of the front porch, was a small, silver vessel. It was humming softly and there was an alternating blue and green light bathing the roof of the porch just beneath the ship. I quickly slipped out of my room and ran downstairs to my parent’s room.

I expected my parents to deny the presence of the ship, as they had always denied the existence of the monsters that I clearly knew lived in my closet, but instead they went up the stairs and I heard all kinds of banging’s and angry voices.

The next day we packed up and moved several states away. I learned to hide my powers and I managed to fit into my new school, blend in as a normal sixth grader. Years went by with no one the wiser. I graduated from high school and went to college.

But I always knew they’d find me again someday. As I sit here typing this, I can hear their footsteps, see their ship hovering outside my window again. This time, I’m going with them. I have questions, I want answers. I hope they have good intentions and I can learn from them. But just in case, I have a backup plan. I have developed other powers over the years. I can create and hold onto then project balls of energy. I have been practicing, at first it was just a small amount of energy, but now I can hold quite a bit. I’m sure I could hold and expel enough energy, at this point, to approximate a small nuclear explosion if I need to.

I realize this will be the end of me as well, but I won’t be held prisoner, I won’t be experimented on and I won’t be used as weapon to hurt others. I have to know what was done to me and why and if there are others. I will get answers or I will get vengeance, but I will not stay hidden any longer.

Sara, Strong and Tall

The cougar stared into her eyes. Sara stood stock still, so close to the cat that she could feel it’s breath on her face. She stood without fear, tall, straight backed and staring right back into the cats eyes.

After a few tense moments, the large cat yawned and looked away. The wolves that surrounded her relaxed as the cougar turned and walked lazily back into the forest. Sara herself drew a breath of relief and stretched her back and arms. She felt completely exhilarated!

Leaving the human village behind her had been the best thing she had ever done. She felt at home here in the forest and it wasn’t just because of the wolves. It was the freedom! The lack of humans and their judgments, their silly rules, their inexplicable hatred and fear of the things they didn’t understand, of her.

Yes, this was her world now and she was happier than she had ever been.

This is a continuation, see the original here.