Chapter 3: Winter
As she approached, the memory hit me. Harder than any memory before. One I had worked to destroy, to forget.
She was here again. I heard her talking to Matador, plotting their next move. I realized this meant I needed to get ready to go out again. Head hanging, I slinked by the cave mouth, when she called Ruvaak, come here. Head low, I crept into the cave, trying not to tremble. She scared me to death. Which isn’t surprising, considering she is the Angel of Death. Yes, ma’am? I whispered. She smiled and patted my head. You have a very important roll to play in our plan. I nodded uneasily. She looked at Matador, who looked at her before finally nodding. She smiled and with a single word, he fell. Wounds that looked like they would have come from me appeared on the brown dragon’s throat and chest, and he fell, dead. I stared, listening to the Angel laugh. She stroked my neck and said You will understand one day, dear, and don’t worry, I will see you again. I stood there, unable to move when she vanished. That was when I heard the dragons. They burst into the cave and saw me standing there, gazing at the limp brown dragon whose blood stained my claws and lapped at their feet.
I woke up with a start. I found that while I was reliving that rather fateful event, Zelda was knocked to the ground, and I knew instantly that she didn’t lie. A whimper rose in my throat, and she looked at me, and smiled. Hello again Ruvaak. How are you? I kept my promise, didn’t I? The others stared at me in confusion. They didn’t know, then. I really didn’t feel like explaining at the moment. I just shook my head, and turned to the Angel of Death, instinctively shrinking into the submissive posture I knew so well from my youth. She laughed, a sound that chilled me to the bone Matador says hello. He’ll be joining us soon. My eyes widened He’s dead I whispered, voice trembling. She smirked, and it was clear what she was going to say before she said it Is he? I forced a growl to rise in my throat, and I brought myself to my full height, and snarled softly. I would not let her scare me like she always did. I was stronger than that. I heard sirens wailing, and she frowned Until next time, then. I was confused. Why was she leaving when she could easily wipe us out now? Then she was gone, so I really didn’t have time to ponder it. Thankfully, she had taken the creatures with her. I looked over my shoulder and saw policemen getting out of their cars and crouching, little guns pointed at us. I bared my teeth, not in the mood for this. But we couldn’t run, as Zelda was still not awake, and quite possibly not alive. I looked at the others. Dove especially looked frantic, nudging Zelda desperately, a whimper in her throat. Police were yelling at us to become human, and I could hear the news people in vans trying to catch a glimpse f us. I could hear the helicopters coming, and I knew we needed to leave. Cassandra seemed frozen, so I made the decision. We have to leave Zelda. We have to go. Dove’s head jerked up, and she stared at me, frantically shaking her head, unable to form words. Caroline, Rose, and Lucy didn’t look happy about my call, but they understood why. That’s when Cassandra decided to get herself together. She whirled on me Who are you to be making decisions, anyway? You obviously are hiding something. So why should we listen to you, Ruvaak? Who is this Matador, anyway? As she spoke, I stiffened in fury. I took a deep breath before saying It was irrelevant. All you need to know is that is that you need to know nothing. And don’t you dare imply that I am a traitor. She snarled Oh, you aren’t now, but you will be, won’t you. My vision went red and I let out a roar, throwing myself at the rainbow colored dragon. She sprang to meet me, and we collided in midair, crashing to the ground. My hind claws raked her belly as my teeth snapped at her throat. Her teeth sank into my shoulder, ripping out a chunk of flesh. While our fights with hellhounds and the creatures had been brutal, this was far worse. I realized something I had long forgotten: dragons were made to fight other dragons. Our claws were designed to rip through scales. Everything about us made it easier to do maximum damage to other creatures of our own species. So this meant we could do a lot of damage to other species- but especially to our own. I brought forth the training of my youth, the training that made me a fearfully dangerous opponent to dragons much larger than me. I broke away, and we began to circle. I leaped into the air, gaining altitude and flying above her. She had taken off, and obviously was caught up in battle lust and knew only one thing: kill. She fell straight toward me, and I dived. I angled myself that I slid right past her, but close enough that I could seize her with my claws. I folded my wings, and we hit the ground- hard. Now I was on her back, where she couldn’t reach me. I bit her neck, teeth puncturing deep. She thrashed, and eventually stopped me, unconscious from blood loss. I released her neck and blood dripping from my muzzle as I looked at the other dragons. They stared at me in terror, and as I came down from battle high, I realized what I had done. Horror spread through me and I spread my wings, taking off, fleeing this place that I knew would come back to haunt me forever.
I have no idea how long I flew. I just know I didn’t stop. I flew fast and straight, desperate to find a place to hide. As I flew over a large body of water, my wings were too tired to go on and I landed in the water. I floated, not worried about drowning or being attacked. I was Queen of the Water, wasn’t I? No tears welled from my golden eyes. I stared at my blurry reflection in the water, I wanted desperately to shed tears and let it all out, but I was unable. I roared my grief at all that had been brought about. I could feel my strength returning as the water flowed over my wounds, healing them and giving me new strength. As I rested and recovered, I took control of myself, shutting down all emotions. I couldn’t kill the Angel alone. I needed help. But the other dragons I knew would never help me, or trust me. The more I pondered my dilemma, the farther the answer seemed. As I lashed my tail, spraying water, the memory slammed into me.
I bent my head to drink from the pool. I drank my fill and then stared at my reflection. It had been only days since I had been chosen to be the Heir. I saw a smaller, lean; black as night dragoness with eyes the color of molten gold. It was me, and there was no way I looked like the Future Water Queen. I shook my head, the last droplets of water hanging from my muzzle scattering. Then I heard the sound of claws clicking against the ground behind me. I froze, listening. Years of training kicked in and I turned slightly, using the reflective wall and water as my eyes. I saw a red dragon, obviously male, coming toward me. He was larger than me and had that arrogant look that most males I have known seem to have. When he was close enough, I spun and pounced, knocking him over as I snarled viciously. What the- Stop! Get off of me! He cried. I didn’t respond, just pinned his head against the ground. He thrashed, but it was clear he didn’t have the training I did. He stopped trying to fight, panting, when I heard a sharp voice Ruvaak! What are you doing? I hissed, turning to face Azul Defending myself. She let out an annoyed growl How do you know he was going to harm you? The look on my face was enough. She shook her head That is Kendov. He is the Male Water Dragon Heir. I looked down and snorted before leaping off him, landing lightly. I stalked off, hoping it would be the last time I saw him.
I shook myself out of the trance. But I had my answer. The other Heirs. Our counterparts. I spread my wings and flapped them, getting out of the water. I had some work to do.
I knew it would be simple to find the males. I landed on the outskirts of down and shifted. I jogged into town, and keeping my head down, accessed a computer, and looked “Dragon Sightings.” After several hours of searching, I found I was looking for. A video of a battle between hellhounds and dragons I knew weren’t us- they were the wrong colors. The location said this battle had taken place in Canada. As I turned off the computer, someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned slowly, and saw it was a woman. A woman with gray hair and red eyes. Of course. I sighed and said “Hi.” She smiled Hello dear .Would you come with me? I laughed and said “No way, Grandma.” I felt reckless and bursting with energy after my bath and discovery. I punched her in the face, sending her reeling. I sprinted out of the building and shifted, leaping into the air.
Guess where I went? Actually, don’t answer that. I went to Canada. I flew long and hard for it, and when I arrived at the place where the battle was said to take place, I could smell he blood, still staining the grass. Since the video was only a week old, I wasn’t surprised. I looked around, and started exploring. I came across a small house, and then something hit me from behind and all went black.