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Posted on 2007.11.04 at 01:41
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3274 / 50000 words. 7% done!

I'm already behind on the word count. Third day, and I should be at 5k words, but alas, I am not. Oh well.

Here we go. In which there is much snarky dialog.

The sun set leisurely, drenching the room in blue, slowly diminishing light. Ariel sets her bottle of wine on her dresser and walks across her bedroom to draw the window curtains. This will not do.

As a child, Ariel had read novels of fictional worlds, where humans were only humans with pink and earth toned colors, no rainbow hues or antlery appendages. Strange humans, who seemed naked to the prepubescent Ariel even when they were clothed. In these worlds, there were no witches and wizards and winged beings. Thrilling worlds, with a hardy and admirable ability to survive solely on electricity. Even better, such magically impossible worlds actually did exist at one point in history.

Yet, the writers of such miraculous environments made dragons a myth there as well. It made sense—if there were no unicorns, then why would dragons exist? But in the back of her mind, the young Ariel could hardly imagine a world without magic, and she could not even begin to picture real, live dragons. It made sense to her that dragons should appear in an impossible world.

Running her fingers along her violet-patterned curtains, Ariel took a deep breath. There must be something in the wine. Maybe Duza had picked up the bottle from the Club, and it just happened to be the wrong one to nab. Perhaps she was just seeing things. It had been a long, tiring day at work, after all. Or… Or maybe Duza had gotten a strange present for her? But that thing on the pillow appeared to be breathing. Green wisps of steam shot out of its nostrils.

This will not do…

“Aren’t you going to say something at all, my dear?”

When it spoke this time, Ariel paid attention to its breathy, harshly tenor toned voice. The sound rang with the timbre of vocal chords, so she deduced that the dragon probably did move its jaws to speak, instead of mind read as her childish self had always hoped.

“And why do I need to say anything?” Ariel replied, playing at the dangling curtain ends. Was that too impertinent a response? It was only the size of her regular, old pillow, but dragons were dragons, and no one can know what a technically nonexistent creature can do when vexed. She turned around slowly to face it.

The dragon had lifted its head, revealing a long, flashing blue neck, dizzying in its curved length. It made a hypnotic image, with its reptilian and feline combined head floating above its body, resting on a pedestal of a neck. But unlike snakes, it held itself perfectly still, a lifelike statue, poised in attack.

Steely eye-lashed lids narrowed halfway, watching. A talon tapped against another, clinking in brilliantly sounding chimes.

So, Ariel reflected. Am I going to be killed?

The dragon snorted, its neck jerking in an undignified spasm. “Surely,” it purred, “you have some sort of opinion about finding a member of the supreme and mystical draconian species presiding in your room? Don’t pretend not to. You humans always have an opinion. You treat it like it’s your god given right.”

Apparently, it was not going slash her throat. Instead, it was going to insult her people?

“What does it matter to you whether or not I have an opinion?” she put forth, slowly, handling each word with care.

Blinking in a droop, the dragon’s head drifted in her direction. “My own vanity, of course,” it answered honestly. “I am very much interest in the sort of reaction my beautiful presence has on lower beings. I hope very much that you contribute to the increase of my ego.”

Was it being sarcastic?

“I think I need a drink,” Ariel announced.

The dragon nodded towards the bottle of peach wine. “Please, do whatever pleases you.”

“How considerate of you,” Ariel noted.

Grabbing the bottle, she took a carefully positioned seat at her computer desk chair.

“I would say,” she continued. Her casual, conversational tone surprised her, but pushed that thought down. “I would say,” she tried again, “that my natural hair color is no business of yours, and I thank you to not make such obnoxious and ignorant comments as that again.”

“That is unfortunate,” the dragon commented.

“Well, you asked for my reaction.”

Maybe it was the alcohol that loosened her tongue, but Ariel felt no shame in her impertinence, which the dragon probably thought she had enough of.

“Since we’re having this conversation, however,” Ariel continued, “I suppose I should let you know that my hair has no natural color. Or, if it did, I’ve long since forgotten what it was.”

She tried not to lean backwards as the dragon’s head drifted closer and closer. It notched its head at an angle. Oval pupils floated within crystalline irises, swirling with so much light that it was impossible to identify its color.

“So,” it remarked, flaring its nostrils, “You’re a shifter of some sort, then?”

“I change my hair color by force of will, if that’s what you mean.”
There was an idle wine glass on her desk, and she filled it to the brim with wine. She tried not to slurp as she sipped.

“Aren’t you wondering what’s happening?” the dragon questioned. A spiked, coiling tail Ariel hadn’t noticed before unwound itself from the dragon’s body, dangling off the side of her bed. It tapped in beats of three against her bed sheets.

“I don’t need to wonder. I am aware of everything I need to know about the current events,” Ariel answered. “I am spending the night in, with my favorite drink in the world. I didn’t expect myself to have company while I got myself quietly drunk, but then again, unexpected things usually happen when alcohol is involved. You appear to be a dragon, and a rather pompous, self-centered one at that. How you got here is a mystery, and I admit, I am seriously considering whether your presence is genuine, or if that bar boy slipped something into my coffee.”

The dragon snorted wisps of purple steam. Its scales gleamed a deep blue as it rearranged its limbs.

“If you prefer to think that you are hallucinating, I certainly will not stop you,” it cackled. It clicks its jaws, not in malice, but contemplation. “However, I can assure that my presence is very, very real.”

“Your assurance is no proof of anything,” Ariel responded.

She raised her glass to her lips, and the dragon reminded her that the chair was really only scant feet away from the bed. It drew near, extending its neck to a length that Ariel would never have guessed. With pointed ears pricked forward and eyes slit with dizzying alertness, the dragon brought its head to her face and breathed out, enveloping Ariel in a gray mist.
An acid green tongue, pointed and glistening, darted out, dipping into her glass. There was no splash.

“Peach,” the dragon observed, “And especially pungent too. I quite approve of your drink.”

“Thank… you?” The glass still pressed on her bottom lip. She lifted it to the light and gazed
through it. “Your saliva isn’t poisonous, is it? I’m not going to get some awful, bizarre disease?”

“No. You may choose to believe or not to believe me, though.”

Ariel glared at the dragon and took a long gulp.

“You see? You are still alive,” the dragon pointed out.

“Or so I think.” Ariel set her glass down and looked at her hands. They hadn’t changed. “What if it you turned my wine into a potion, and I am now under a spell?”

“That could have happened,” the dragon agreed. “But I don’t believe I did anything other than taste. But at least you’re questioning me now. I was getting worried.”

“I’m worried too,” Ariel announced. “What the hell are you doing on my pillow? Are you clean? Did you fart on it? Do dragons fart?”

“You have a comfortable pillow. That’s all.”

It was clear that the dragon was not going to slash her throat. Ariel wasn’t sure if something had happened to her drink, but all the dragon seemed to want to do was talk.
Ariel crossed her legs and finished her glass of wine.

In the end, Ariel could except that she was hallucinating. Maybe the Zebra Association was one of those groups who took revenge on people who didn’t agree whole heartedly with their ideals.

“And why, pray tell, are you hogging my pillow?”

“I’m bored.”


“I’m bored. That’s it. Very simple.” It scratched at the bottom of its neck with its right hind flank. “My homeland hasn’t been very interesting lately. No one’s throwing wars, no one’s trying to make war with us. Everything’s perfect. I couldn’t stand it. So here I am, in a human world, biding my time in observation.”

“Sounds like a thrilling story,” Ariel noted.

“Thank you.”

Ariel wanted to cross her eyes at the dragon, just for fun, but decided against it. Instead, she said casually, “So, are you male or female?”

“For our purposes, let us assume that I am the male gender.”

“Our purposes? What the hell are our purposes? And why do they belong to both of us?”

“None of your concern.”

“I think it’s certainly my concern if you’re hogging my pillow.”

“You’re really hung up about that, aren’t you? Don’t worry, my dear lady.” (Keep your hand unfisted. It wouldn’t do to punch a dragon, Ariel.) “I assure you that I am as sensitive with my hygiene as the next soccer mother of your world. You need not concern yourself with the state of the pillow.” With that, the dragon adjusted a slender limb and closed its eyes.

“Well what am I going to do when I want to sleep? Go on the couch?” Ariel whined. She didn’t feel it was appropriate to whine like a child. This new dragon friend seemed an easy going sort, except when he was asking for her opinion.

“If you wanted to be a good hostess, then I suppose that would be the best option.”

The dragon annoyed her, Ariel realized.


darkfrog24 at 2007-11-04 13:25 (UTC) (Link)
I can't tell how old Ariel is.
ahdawn at 2007-11-04 15:54 (UTC) (Link)
That's because I've already decided her age group but not the exact age yet it's a secret. :)
darkfrog24 at 2007-11-04 17:17 (UTC) (Link)
So that's why they tell us to save all comments until Diciembre
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