Dragons. Nothing comes to mind but the scorching blast of flame, armor like scales, and the burning hatred for mankind. They are known throughout the land as Hell's enemy, for even they are wicked enough to cause disarray within Satan's mind. Creatures that came from no imagination upon this Earth, how they came to be puzzles many. And if any know how, why were they placed here? To torment us? To treat us like toys because of the sins we have never apologized for? Are the gods behind this? Or do they not know where these beasts originated from either? Whatever the case, the humans that populate this primitive world not only know how to keep them at bay, but also destroy them. And these powerful humans are known as Dragon Hunters.
Dragon Hunters are to be famous because of the great skill and valor they possess. No human would ever think of facing the mighty beast that is the dragon, yet a selected few have trained all their lives for it. Sure it takes patience, a good mentor, and perfect motor skills, but the hunter must also have strength in the heart, and the knowledge that they might die. Dealing with dragons is a difficult subject, for not many teach the important lessons a young dragon hunter needs to know. An uneducated youngster is as good as a chicken. You get killed, and most likely eaten. Anyway, onto the story that is of the dragon hunter who many believe is the living incarnation of Enyo, the wicked and dangerous goddess of war.
Dragons are a dangerous matter. They are enemies of the very Underworld itself. To appose one is most likely immediate death, unless you are armed with the right weapons. I have learned that throughout my hunting years. To be enemies with a dragon? Impossible, some think. The heartless beasts have no emotion, therefore cannot hate an individual. But that is false. Hate comes from the soul. My enemy was a dragon. I didn't know it until dragons started to wreak havoc in villages, then in cities. Their voices echoed in the minds of the weaklings that they tortured, and even though I was not there, I could feel the fiery blasts that erupted in columns from their mouths. They had a reason to do this, but the motive was unknown to me.
Every dragon hive has its Queen, the mighty leader who is respected and feared. And that dragon is always the strongest. So was my antagonist in the year of the war. She was an ungodly sight, and differed from her inferiors. She had red sales, clearly showing through the crimson liquid that plastered her armor hide. She had not the dull scales that most dragons wore, which was an unexpected, frightening sight as she tore through my village with breath and talon and teeth. Her underside had a rugged, hard appearance, but it was only for show; the scales were actually softer in the under regions, and flickered with a golden glow that slowly faded into the war color that tainted her body. Like all dragons, she had two large wings that folded close to her sides as she landed, flames still spewing from her mighty jaws. Two large horns mounted her massive crown, and circled around them were several smaller spikes, jutting out backwards. Its spine was small as it traveled down its neck, but as it neared the tail it rose to connect with the leathery wings. The dragon's tail coiled around houses, strangling the villagers within and crushing the stones to dust. Her flames must have run out, because the red and orange element ceased to spew and destroy. I caught a glimpse of the inside of the mouth. It was a terrible sight; teeth jutted out from every corner of the gums, the tongue was pale and grayish, and I could even see the two tiny tubes at the back of the throat which mixed air and venom to create fire. The teeth glinted in the pale light of the moon. I've seen those teeth. They've ended lives quicker than the eye can see. But as soon as I had made a mental image of the interior, the she-beast closed her jaws. Her eyes fell upon me, clad in a full set of armor, unsheathing my spears. The orbs blazed a cold fire that sent shivers down my spine. Reflections of the dragon's thoughts shimmered in the dark, yellow depths. Evil, cruel thoughts they were. We were locked in silent combat. Everything was still. Suddenly, a voice roared in my mind, disgustingly feminine, "What do you plan to do with your tiny metal swords, human?" As surprised as I was, I tried my best not to show it. Dragon Hunters had to stay sharp, and sharp I would be.
"Destroy you." as soon as I finished my sentence, a sneer sent me flying back into a crumbling cottage, "Destroy me... you really are as stupid as cattle, aren't you? Tiny female, you doubt my strength? A big mistake, that is." I realized that it was not the smug remark that had me wedged in the stone, but one of the beasts's talons. My left arm plate had flown off, and a deep cut slowly oozed onto my hand and leg. The dragon's face twisted into a smirk-like expression, but I could see it was hard for it to do such a thing, for its face twitched and it resumed its normal features.
"What do you want? I have not done anything to a beast such as you." My voice, I confess, shook with fear.
"What do you think I want? What is it that we dragons crave so much? That we desire each day. Tell me what you know, dear Amelia."
My name. She had said my name. How? Nevermind that. Right now, all I needed to think about was how to get away.... alive. "Death. You want death."
"Such a clever girl, you are. I do. I have gotten death today, but as you know, we crave for it so much.... you don't know how it is to feel, to be without death and blood and misery. It's terrible for us dragons."
"You want my death? B-" she cut me off, her rumbling voice now booming with sheer anticipation and excitement.
"But why, she says! But why? You, the almighty slayer of dragons. The one who kills us all! I think you know." the she-dragon threw her mighty head about, snarling and shrieking as we communicated mentally.
I stayed silent. It was obvious now. She saw me as a threat because of my superior dragon slaying skills and reputation. Good....
The dragon stopped swinging her head, and unfurled her wings instead. "Farewell, for now, human. But beware. Your death will come on demon's wings. This isn't the last time you shall see me." she took off with a bellow, shaking the ground as she soared into the ugly gray sky.
The encounter had been short, only lasting for a few minutes. But it was enough to put me on my guard. A massive dragon was after my blood, and she wouldn't stop until it was hers. But two questions rang in my mind. 'How does she know me? Is my reputation that great? And also, why didn't she kill me then and there?' I dare not ask these questions to anyone. This little skirmish is between me and the she-beast. But her dragons are slowly destroying the lands. I must do something now.
The wound on my arm was not as deep as I had thought, but it took time for it to fully heal. I tried not to burden myself with thoughts of death and destruction that would soon come, but the dragon attacks became worse every day. Finally, I decided it was my time. I gathered my hunting hounds, 4 total, and packed my bag. My destination was a three day ride, so I needed a strong steed to carry me. A local stable owner loaned me the horse, a rather handsome black colt with long legs. I said my final goodbyes to my fellow villagers, and was on my way. By the time we were clear of the edge of the forest that bordered my village, my beasts were already sweating. The colt snorted and grunted with each step now, and my wolves panted, saliva flying out of their maws like wet string. I couldn't afford to stop and rest, so I urged them on another couple of miles. When the colt started to stumble beneath me was I when I finally slowed down. I made a makeshift camp a couple miles away from the forest, and started a small fire. It was not long before the sun fell behind the horizon and the moon took its place in the sky. My wolves, mesmerized by the glowing silver orb, threw back their shaggy heads and bayed. Their howls shook the air and shattered the eerie silence, only to replace it with a wicked new noise. I myself was awestruck by the beauty of the full moon. It shimmered as if it were a reflection upon a pond. The beauty of the moon combined with the long, mournful howls made my eyelids heavy, and I gave in to the peaceful realm of sleep and dream.
It was not long after the sun had rose that I awoke, gathered my objects, put out the fire, and woke my dogs. The morning was chilly, and a bitter north wind pulled at my hair and stung my bare face as I galloped onward. It was a long and uneventful day, racing across barren plains and through dark forests, but it was all worth it. We finished at the edge of a kingdom that I was not familiar with. The mountains of dragon caves loomed overhead, not far from where we stood. There was no activity upon the landscape, nor in the kingdom itself. I straddled my horse and dogs to a birch tree and went to investigate the silent land, only to realize my mistake soon after I entered. This place was destroyed, houses demolished, roads ripped apart. The white marble that the buildings were made out of was scattered everywhere, edges crisp and charcoal black from fire. No life, not even DIRT occupied the trampled ground. Dragons must have invaded here, and left nothing behind. Just as I was turning to go back, a bone-chilling roar shook the air. The familiar flap of leather wings reached my ears, and the shriek of the black colt met the malignant snarl.
I had expected a long and patient stalking of my quarry; the chance to observe, learn, and prepare, but the attack was sudden and caught me off guard.
The dragon was huge. Not as big as the female, but still bigger than a horse. Its dark green scales were dull and ragged, clanking annoyingly as it terrorized my beasts. The colt reared, kicking out its front legs wildly, and started to run towards me. The dragon, quick as a snake, lurched forward and grasped the sides of the colt, hauling it away and tearing it to pieces. My dogs scattered, howling in fear as the dragon captured two of them as well. After its meal was finished, the dragon turned and regarded me calmly, its silver eyes flickering. I unsheathed my sword, and at the very sight of it a hoarse growl erupted from the beast's throat. It moved with a speed that belied its size, and I was barely able to dodge the burst of yellow flame that spewed from its mouth. The momentum of the charge took the beast past me, and I cursed the encumbering armor that slowed me down. But I leaped forward, swinging my blade with all my might, into the side of its neck. My blade bounced off the beast's scales, and the force of the blow knocked me back. A huge voice tore through my mind though no sound did the dragon make.
"Pathetic moves, tiny female. Your little pricks won't save you in this fight."
Panting, I replied "No? We'll see about that..." I reached down and pulled out a wickedly sharp dagger, and flung it at the dragon's eye. My aim is legend in my village, and sure enough the blade dug into the dragon's orb, causing the dragon to scream in pain and rear back. This exposed the underbelly and gave me an idea, and I lurched forward, showing my blade into the side of the belly, close to where the scales faded. The dragon shrieked and crashed down, trying to crush me. Its voice wailed in my head, screaming pain and vengeance. I pulled my sword free, and rolled to the side, cutting the heavy armor off my chest, back, and arms.
The dragon's belly was still exposed, so I lunged toward it. With arm shoved deep in the broad breast of the beast, my blade punctured the beating heart and withdrew quickly. A gurgling sound came from the dragon's throat, almost like a final scream. A rush of blood spewed from the mouth, and the great beast fell, lashing trees from their roots. Finally the dragon's twitching subsided, and I gathered enough courage to approach the hell I had just slain. Peering into the unspoiled eye that was turned toward me, I thought I saw a glimpse of the inner mountain, crawling with dragons. As the orb's light died and any movement ceased there rang in my head the strange sound of laughter.
The next few days I was restless. I couldn't sleep, and I often roamed for hours at a time, thinking. I saw no other dragon, but that as because I had never stepped foot near the mountain, and had not the intention yet. The days were dry and scorching, the nights blowing with blistering chill. Odd weather, but what could one expect from a climate near a dragon hive? I knew the forest that I camped by rejoiced, for birds sang and chipmunks twittered, but I felt no such emotion. The image of the interior of the mountain still flashed through my mind, dragons flickering in and out of tunnels and caves. My silence eventually affected the animals; the forest became quiet again. Finally I explored into the mountains, traveling deep into the never-ending tunnels and caverns that swiveled every which way. Sometimes the tunnels ended in a dense forest that I had to cut my way through to get to the other side. And other times, they often ended in dead ends. Finally, the tunnels seemed to come to an end, and before me was a vast canyon lined with ridges and cliffs. I slowly made my way across, only to loose my footing and half fall, half slip down the deep rocky slope. My slip quickly ended, and I stood. Before me were many, many dragons, their long snouts pointed up to the sky. I slowly backed away, glancing at my surroundings, hoping for an easy escape route, but found no such luxury. A shift within the ranks caught my attention, and I drew my sword, but instead of turning to attack, the beasts all let out bursts of flame. The many flames joined together to form a vast flaming canopy, racing across the sky, lighting the clouds aflame. A single beast was silhouetted against the raging inferno, its massive frame slowly coming into view. Every dragon ceased to move as it passed, and its movement contained such grace, it seemed as if it were shrouded in a vast greatness that no other dragon beheld. It lowered its head so that I could peer into the utter destruction contained within its golden eyes. A voice, nowhere near that of the dragon I had killed before, sounded in my head: a wicked female voice.
"Amelia, the mighty dragon slayer. So tiny yet so strong, to kill the one I marked and cast out. His weakness was an insult to me, but perhaps you would battle a real dragon. What say you, girl? Shall we fight?"
It was the she-beast that I had encountered earlier, red scales flaming and golden chest glowing.
"Did you know I would come?" my voice struggled to stay steady, but with such a frightening and horrendous sight, how could it not?
"I know everything. You cannot imagine the limitless expanses of my intellect little one. You can't escape my powerful mind. Nothing can. And I suppose you want to know who I am? I am Vinchenti, otherwise known as your Death."
She extended a talon while my eyes were fixed on hers, and flicked me into the rocky wall of the canyon. The blow was enough to draw a strangled scream and loss of breath, but definitely not enough to kill.
"But first, " 'Vinchenti' continued. "You will grovel before me and beg the honor of my killing you."
Furry boiled in my blood and I screamed at her that she might kill me but that I would never bow down to her. She laughed and began to toy with me. Gentle flicks of talons and tail that rent clothes, opened flesh, and broke bones. An eternity passed during which I was hurt and hurt again, until I thought all was broken, and I could not feel anymore pain. And there was always the mocking voice, crushing my spirit and soul as my body was slowly torn apart.
And at the end I groveled. I feel to my knees and bent my head to kiss the talon that extended out to me and I begged for the honor of becoming Vinchenti's prey.
As the wickedly fanged mouth descended to take me I heard enraged barking. My two remaining dogs, Fenrir and Subeta had found me. My dogs were attacking, protecting their beloved mistress. Vinchenti's head jerked to the movement, toward them, and with all my strength I hurled myself through a crack in the cliffs close by, most certainly hurling to my doom. My last act on this Earth was to rob a dragon of its dinner.
When I awoke, days after my journey into the mountain, I had no memory of what had occurred. All I knew was that I was angry, and hungered for revenge.
The person who had saved me was a young healer, probably just a few years older than me, but she looked as if she had thousands of years of wisdom. Her home was quite odd, but I did not ask her about it, for I was too beat up to talk. The room in which I recovered in was not made out of the regular wood or cloth, but diamond, crystal. whatever. It was beautiful. The walls were clear, but not enough to be completely transparent, and when the sunlight hit it, the crystals created dancing golden arcs that entertained me daily. My left arm and leg were held in slings made of wool, and several leaf bandages and such plastered my legs, arms, and torso. Everyday the young healer would come in and replace the bandages with fresh ones, and put new herb ointments on my bloody wounds. She was very kind, but rarely spoke. Neither did I. But I enjoyed the silence; it gave me time to think about what had happened and how I ended up in such a beautiful place.
It took weeks for me to fully recover, and even then I was weak in my skills. The young healer began to talk, but not much. She even asked of my name, to which I replied of my first name and first name only. Her name was Scarlette, and as I had, she only gave her first name. It didn't matter. As soon as I trained I would leave. And that time quickly came. One day, while Scarlette was out collecting her herbs, I left a note and began my journey.
Congratulations! You made it through my story! Hoped you'd enjoy.
I'm not finished. More like half way through. Please provide some constructive criticism for spelling, grammar, ideas ect.
I will not tolerate rude and negative comments.
Thank you! ;3