The Dragon had failed three times now to find a way to save the Unicorn, but had failed each time. These humans held the two females with high regard, and didn't falter in their defense of them. For what reason, the Dragon could not fathom.
It was the day after he had last seen the carriage holding the Unicorn, though he did not see inside it much outside that first day. He was walking down the street listening to conversation as he went, as usual, and then saw two men dressed in furs come in and walk into town.
The Dragon knew these men would leave for days, hunting animals, before coming back with their prey. It was like how the Dragon's father would hunt for him and his kin before they were capable of it.
He followed them into the Bazaar, an odd place where men would exchange food, clothing, and collectibles for gold. As usual, the Dragon had to repress the urge to horde the yellow stones for himself. There was always later.
As he followed, the Dragon picked up some of the men's conversation. It was mostly about certain activities he did not fully comprehend, such as getting 'drunk,' but after a while, his eavesdropping was well rewarded.
"Think those merchants were telling the truth?" the larger of the two hunters asked his smaller companion.
"'Bout them beasts?"
"Doubt it. Ya don't usually see dragons travelin' in packs."
"Assuming they even exist."
The conversation went on, the larger hunter skeptical about the existence of dragons, but the Dragon stopped caring. In packs? There was only one reason dragons would ever travel that way and that was when they moved to a new location.
The Dragon remembered his brood speaking of such a thing, though they had been hesitant. It was possible they had been attacked by men and decided to leave afterward, fearing more men finding them. It made more sense the more the Dragon thought on it.
He felt lighter, something inside him turning the burning blaze that was his anger into a small pyre. These humans could not have handled his entire brood. It all made sense if they had moved. But why leave him behind? He shook his head. No, it had to have been an emergency.
Or they really are dead, and he was being hopeful.
The Dragon shook the thought and continued through the bazaar, towards his small den. Gold mocked him as he went, but he tried to focus on what the men sold. Skins made of animal's fur to provide warmth. Water contained in wooden things called barrels that had been turned brown somehow was poured out into smaller containers you drank out of. Strings of beads and jewels you hung around your neck. The list of oddities went on, reminding the Dragon of just how much he still didn't know.
Not that he wanted to know any more about these pathetic creatures...
"Work is done for today, except John's order," Godo said, scratching his head. "We can finish that tomorrow, though. Get on home for today."
The Dragon growled softly - an odd quiet sound with his human form - and nodded reluctantly. He still hated having to follow this man's orders, though he thought Godo to be a respectable man. His work, melting metal and reshaping it into useful forms, was simply fascinating.
Sadly, it would be in the past soon. He ached to be in his true form once more and once the Unicorn was freed, he could don it. Then, he would search for his family. They couldn't have moved far.
His thoughts were interrupted by a female passing by the smithy. No, not just a female. She had skin fairer than any other he had seen and nearly white blonde hair. Though her dress was that of one of the serving girls men had, she walked with the pride of some immortal creature. Like herself. The Dragon's deep golden eyes met violet eyes.