That next morning, the feel of the warmth of the sun rested on his face. Samuel opened his eyes seeing bright rays of sunlight shining through the tree tops. He felt his stomach rumble with hunger. He touched it and then stood glancing around the forest. First he would hunt for food and return home to tell his father the trategy he encountered. He clutched the hilt of his sword, unsheathed and started his hunt for some meat.
He strolled through the forest keeping an eye out for any deer, moose or other animals. Suddenly he heard a strange noise coming his way. He cocked his head to one side. This noise sounded familiar though. A pig? he thought. He so hoped so. The noise go closer until he realized it was a pig.
"He pig out in the forest?" he muttered to himself.
There it was. A full grown pig advancing toward him, it's curly tail bobbing in the back. When the pig saw him, it stopped staring at him.
"It would be nice to have some bacon," Samuel said. As if the pig had understood what he said, it squealed and ran back the way it had come.
"Hey!" Samuel exclaimed chasing after it. "Dumb pig!"
He dived foward reaching out grab it in his hands, but it slipped out from under him. Samuel growled and chased it again. But he stopped until he came to an unexpected cottage. It was a small cottage. The outside walls were a light brownish color, the boards moldy and scrapes pealing from the boards. Vines stretched along the sides and one of the windows were broken and the front door was slightly opened.
Samuel stood in front of the door and knocked. After a long wait, a big strong man opened the door. Mucles rippled his arms and his eyes were gray. His flaming red hair reached his shoulders and he had a strong firm jaw.
"What do you want?" he demanded in a gruff, low voice. Samuel eyed him and replied catiously,
"I'm lost in the forest and I was just searching for food."
"What's your name?"
"The names Herman," he told him.
"Herman-- that's-" Samuel stopped when Herman stepped closer, his eyes narrowed.
"Um, yeah, ok. Nice to meet you." Herman didn't reply but moved out of the way so Samuel could enter.
The kitchen was tiny and the dining area wasn't very big.
"Sit." Herman ordered. Samuel obeyed and sat down. The chair creaked when he settled himself.
Later, after Samuel sat quietly, Herman came back in holding two plates with warm, steamed (meat) drumbsticks on them. Samuel dug in once it was placed in front of him.
"So," Herman said sitting across from him. "What made you get lost in this forest?" Samuel looked up from his food.
"My knights and I were attacked by a dragon the day before today," he replied.
"You and your knights?" Herman asked. Samuel nodded and stood up.
"I am Prince Samuel." Herman just blinked. Suddenly he was laughing.
"You? Prince samuel?" The young man grimaced.
"But I am!"
"Then prove it!" Herman replied.
"I will." Samuel stood there uncertain. How would he prove that he was the prince? Then he remembered his father's sword. He took it out of his scabbard and handed it to the hermit. Carved in the blade was,
Herman threw up his hands and confessed," I believe you now." Samuel grinned and sat back down.
"So why were you and your knights out here?" Herman questioned.
"My castle was attacked by a Black Dragon so I came out here slay it." Herman's eyes flashed with interest.
"What was that you said?" he asked.
"My castle was attacked by a Black Dragon..." the prince replied slowly.
"Black Dragon?" Samuel nodded.
"I know, I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw it."
"I don't understand, I thought Black Dragons didn't exist anymore." Samuel nodded.
"I do too. But I know that it was a Black Dragon."
Herman stood up and walked to the window to look out. He put a finger under his chin in thought.
"Long ago they roamed this world freely causing destruction wherever they went. People believed them to be the most furious, powerful dragon of all. Slayers could not slay them. Not even Romon Blaize."
"Romon Blaize?" Herman nodded.
"He was the most known slayer in the land. (My great, great, great and so on grandfather.) But he was killed trying to slay a Black Dragon."
"And then the Black Dragons began to disapear," Samuel continued and Herman nodded.
"Will you help me?"
"Find the Black Dragon and kill it."
"No, I cannot. You canno't. You will not be able to slay it, Samuel." Herman answered stoutly.
"But Zilda is in trouble! And so is my kingdom! We can't let this dragon run loose!" Herman looked at him with an unsure look on his face.
"But it will be impossible."
"Not if we believe we can,"Samuel argued.
"If no one could, maybe we can." The prince's hard gaze rested on his. They stood there until the hermit nodded his head.