The Dwarf Sage

"You've got to be joking."

Hamon banged his fist on the table, nearly upsetting Jack's beer over the maps strewn across the surface.

"We are not journeying over halfway across the island to go and see some good-for-nothing old shrimp who may order us dead soon as look at us!" Hamon raged, his face turning ruddy.

"Grimlock won't order us dead!" snorted Jack, taking a hearty swig from his own tankard. "Me and him go back a long way."

"How?"

"You don't need to worry. Either way -"

"Look, wise he may be, but he's a dwarf. Dwarves hate dragons. We come marching up to his door, with a dragon. Dwarf kills dragon. Lila upset," said Hamon in a mockingly simple voice.

Jack sighed and plonked his tankard on the table.

"What do you suggest?"

"Why do we even have to do anything? Why can't we stay here, release the dragon and -"

"I'm not releasing my Inhar anywhere!" Lila pouted, clutching the dragon protectively.

"Releasing the dragon won't help," said Jack firmly. "And staying here isn't an option either, because the forest-dwellers won't hesitate to leave the forest if they believe we have stolen something that is rightfully theirs."

"So, we go to a human wiseman!" said Hamon sardonically. "He'll probably be twice as wise as a stupid dwarf, and less inclined to kill us."

"I think you're overreacting a bit, mate -"

"Look, shut up, will you?" said Lila suddenly. "Don't argue, it doesn't help anyone, and Inhar's getting scared."

"I tell you what, that dragon's more trouble than it's worth," said Hamon angrily.

"Well, there's no reason why Lila can't keep it -"

"Oh no, no reason at all! Only the fire-breathing, the smell, the feeding, the humungous piles of sh-"

"Hamon!" Jack said reprovingly. "What I don't think any of you realise is that the forest-dwellers are breeding dragons! In a forest! Believe me, they're planning something. And no-one knows more about dragons than dwarves, it's common knowledge."

"Well - I'm going," said Lila.

"You aren't," said Hamon stonily. "Who's going to look after the chickens, the vegetable patch, the -"

"Oh, don't be such a spoilsport, brother," said Lila playfully.

"What would father have said if we abandoned his and his fathers' life's work for a wildgoose chase?" said Hamon furiously.

"You can't stay here," said Jack, with an air of finality. "The forest-dwellers are out for revenge, and we don't know what they're planning. But believe me, they've probably got more dragons hidden in those trees somewhere, and Grimlock will know what's happening."

Hamon cursed.

"All right, all right! We're going! And Lila, for heaven's sake that dragon can look after itself. Put it down."

Lila could barely hold it now anyway. It was nearing three feet long. And it was going to get much bigger.

The End

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