Galen and Llewellyn

Galen and Llewellyn made their way to their rooms. The stronghold was a castle initially, but several generations of Van Helsings had changed parts of it by using magical slave labour.  The teen boy and teen dragon had rooms in the old part where  there was no plywood or plaster walls,  just the cold damp stone.

Their rooms were beside each other in a long hallway of similar cold, dark and damp stone cubicles. Each room had an iron framed cot,  a couple of bare wooden shelves along one side to hold their meagre clothing, and a wooden wash stand with a large ceramic bowl and water pitcher.  There was also a porcelain chamber pot under each bed that had to be emptied and disinfected every morning.

Llewellyn followed Galen into his room. They needed to talk, and Galen's room had the advantage of having two outside walls, one wall shared by Llewellyn's room, and the wall facing the hallway. If they sat on the bed  in the corner of the outside walls, no one could eavesdrop on them. The rooms were so bare, even the slightest little inconsistency like a tiny microphone would be noticed immediately.

When they were seated as comfortable as possible on the corn husk filled mattress, Galen started off the conversation.

" I wonder why they want us to kidnap a baby? Even if she has magical abilities of some sort, she would be too young to know how to use them."

"I know why,"  Llewellyn said with a smug look on his face.

After several minutes of silence, Galen lost patience with his friend.

"Well, are you going to tell me, or do I have to beat it out of you?"

They both laughed at that one. The dragon could smash the human into the floor with one swipe of his scaley tail. He would never do it, though. They were like brothers. They were captured within a couple of weeks of each other, and they grew up together. Neither one had any other family, because the Van Helsings murdered them all.

"You know that I have very long range hearing because of the size and shape of my ear drums."

Galen nodded. I'm surprised  Mr. and Mrs. Evil haven't figured it out over the years."

They called Judas and Elektra,  'Mr. and Mrs. Evil' almost as long as they had lived at the stronghold.

"Anyway, I pretended to be taking a nap in the woods about a mile from the modern part of the castle where the Van Helsing family lives. They couldn't see me because of the trees and the underbrush, but I could hear Judas and Elektra loud and clear. They were discussing  the five year old kid who keeps wanting me to give him rides on my back. Apparently he is one of them ... the last one of their line, in fact. Llewellyn explained.

"I thought the kid they called Ash was the last of the line. He was the same age as us, but he was never allowed to come over to our cold stone cells to play with us. You told me you could hear that he wasn't treated  much better than us," Galen remarked.

" That's true, he wasn't. I thought Ash was the last one too, but he was a disappointment to his parents, I guess. They couldn't make him murder or maim innocent magical people. The Van Helsings started out by killing vampires like Dracula, but something happened to make them go after anyone who wasn't 100% human. Now it seems they want to mold the five year old into being just like them. I don't know where he came from, but they tested his blood to make sure he had Van Helsing blood in him, and he does."

"Did your hear the kid's name?"

"Nah, they always called him the brat. It sounds like they don't particularly like the kid, he's just  a means to an end for them. They want to do more than groom him to take over the family some time in the future. They want to use him to breed a whole new line of Van Helsings with magical powers!"

Galen gasped at this new information. "Those hypocrites!"

"Exactly. I heard them say how they're going to do it, too. That baby they want us to kidnap is the granddaughter of the King and Queen of the Amazon elves, and they have great power. They want the kid and the baby to grow up together, so he can learn how she uses whatever powers she might have. Then they're going to put them together in the same room as soon as she's old enough to have babies. As young hormonal teens, nature will take its course and the babies won't be long in coming."

"That's ... that's despicable!" Galen growled.

Before Llewellyn could answer, they heard the heavy door at the end of the long hall slam.

"Someone is coming. I better get back to my room, or they'll think we're plotting against them."  Llewellyn ran out of Galen's door and into his own, before footsteps on the stone floor could be heard getting closer.

Elektra pushed Galen's door open and stepped into the room.

"You will be sent for at dawn, so you better eat now and get some sleep. You will train during the day, and at dusk you leave for the island."

She leaned forward and put a small tray on the wooden shelf by the door. There was only a skimpy peanut butter and jam sandwich, and a plastic cup of milk. She backed out of the room with another tray for Llewellyn. Galen went over to the shelf and took the sandwich. He was very glad they found some wild berries and walnuts in the woods during the day, or they would have starved all night.

The sun was barely above the horizon when the drael flew down the hallway, as his screeches reverberated off the stone walls. Not even the dead could have slept through that noise, so of course the boy and the dragon were up and dressed before the creature got to their rooms. He touched down just long enough to yell at the closed doors.

"The master wants you in the kitchen in ten minutes. If you aren't there on time, you get no breakfast." He turned and took flight to screech down the hall again.

They ran out of their doors like the devil himself was after them. They had no intention of missing breakfast. They reached the kitchen with two minutes to spare. Mr. and Mrs. Evil weren't even there, but the cook had been given instructions to withhold their breakfasts if they weren't there on time. There was no good reason for them to be so mean spirited, they just were. They enjoyed making the two boys' lives as miserable as possible.

The cook, who was human, was treated better than the magical people, but not by much. She liked the young friends, and slipped food into their rooms whenever she could. Even with the extras she provided, they were half starved. She made them an extra big breakfast, because she knew what a frugal supper they were given. When they finished, Galen thanked her and gave her a big hug. Judas and Elektra entered the kitchen just as the boys finished helping the cook with the dishes.

"Follow us to the war room." Judas ordered, then went back out the door.

Elektra followed a step behind without saying a word. It was pretty obvious who was the boss in that family. When they arrived at the war room, Elektra went to the three tall windows, to pull the heavy drapes closed. Then she locked the heavy oaken door. Galen could tell that whatever was going to happen in the room, would be top secret. He didn't need to be told to keep his mouth shut about the proceedings. The slightest little slip - up would be fatal to him and his friend, Llewellyn.

Judas put two fingers in his mouth and whistled up toward the ceiling. Within a minute, a swirling dust devil appeared in the centre of the room. The air stilled as a four foot high man stepped out of the mini tornado. He was human, but his face had the sharp featured look of a weasel. Llewellyn shivered with fear. The new person was an evil wizard, and he was probably there to put a spell on them.

"Do it!" Judas demanded.

The wizard grinned, showing sharp tiny teeth. He took a wand out of his robe and waved it toward Llewellyn. He mumbled an incantation for several minutes, then put the wand down by his side. The dragon found himself floating up to the twelve foot high ceiling. With a gasp of surprise, he extended his wings and flapped them to avoid hitting the ceiling. Without warning, Llewellyn flew around the room at top speed, with little effort from him. He had to force himself to land. The wizard must have given back his full powers!

"How do you feel about your full flying capacity, dragon?" Judas sneered.

Llewellyn didn't take the bait by giving a snide remark back, in case his newly restored ability was rescinded. Galen watched his friend fly twelve feet up, with awe. The dragon had never been able to fly more than five feet up, the whole time they had known each other.

 

The End

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