Tales of Dragons and Other Oddities.

The fire burned brightly with the heat radiating dominantly from the fireplace. The hearthstone, when not covered in sot, was a deeply shadowed, dark red marble. It was  crafted with old dragon scales buried deep within its body.

An elderly figure sat in a creaky wooden chair, four steps from the fiery coals. An Elven pipe protruded from his mouth, poking out from his white beard. Every seventh second a puff of smog erupted from his lungs and traveled out of his slightly agape mouth. His lips were coarse and dry, like that of a long since extinct river. His oceanic eyes gazed aridly into the heart of the fire, dreaming of distant, dying memories.

The room was small. The only light was from the fire, as the lanterns were off and the sun had long since set. The wooden floor glowed from the light, but the air was thick from the pipes smoke. A small simurg lay curled on a rug by the fire, basking in the heat, gently purring as each new wave of warmth slowly caged the creature in comfort. Unlike most of its kind, it was quite miniature in size. Its feathered body was little more than the size of a great dane hound.

A knocking echoed from the large door. Three distinct, sharp raps. The simurg raised its head slightly, but swiftly rested it as the man in the chair raised his hand to calm the creature. Joyfully, it allowed its head to drift slowly back down to the rug.

The elderly figure moved his head around slowly, clearly in no rush to answer. The golden ring on his finger glinted in the light as he reached to remove the pipe from his mouth. His voice, dehydrated but sharp, rang out across the impoverished room. "Enter stranger, share the heat from my fire."

A man entered. His face was shaded like snow, with his meadow like eyes piercing through the heat towards the figure sitting by the fire. His high cheek bones stretched his face like a frozen mountain side. The only sign of age was the three wrinkles on the mans forehead. 

He swung the door shut, and the elderly figure rose. "What is it you were sent for this time boy?" 

The voice of the man was hollow, lacking commitment. "Old friends should greet old friends in such a..."

With a puff of smoke erupting from his mouth, the elder interrupted. "Old friends should be greeted as new enemies. For if they were friends, the friendship wouldn't have staled with age." 

The man chuckled lightly, relieved slightly. "Well your caution is good, it shows awareness." The man drew a dagger from beneath his black, knee length jacket. "But you should have run away friend.

"I am here for your blood Sigurd Villentious. I am here for vengeance. I am here for..." 

The man screamed as the Simurg launched itself, like lightning from a cloud, at the man. Tackling him to the ground with a massive thump. The mighty jaws of the beast tore through the mans throat, leaving a hole the size of clenched fist. 

Sigurd Villentious approached the body, stroked the Simurgs head and whispered, "thank you Puc, but now we must leave." The elf stalked towards the book shelf, three steps to the right of the fireplace. Grabbing the scrolls from the top shelf, he lay them all on the ground and whispered an incantation. 

A large, purple orb began to visualize from the ground. The cries of men echoed into the small hut from the woods outside.

"Enter the orb Puc, it is time we retaliate."  

The End

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