Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Day Two-Sixty-Three: Draconic Express

We flew for a long time, and without stopping. Whether anybody spoke I don't know, because Barrel wouldn't put me on his back until I stopped screaming.

I'm pretty sure I fell asleep for a while when I finally made it into the big bastard's seating section. One minute I was staring at endless plains far below; the next I was flopped onto the grass, watched over by Edmund and Harold the Pansy. They both looked concerned and a little terrified.

Might've had something to do with the spider blood on my gloves and overalls. I don't know. Stuff like that doesn't really bother me. That didn't stop me from vomiting all over Harold's shoes, but the vomit had nothing to do with monster guts.

After I'd cooled down and my headache broke, Edmund filled me in with his stupid poet language nonsense: we'd set down ten kilometres away from the castle. Barrel didn't speak English, but everyone was convinced from observation alone that he was exhausted. Even a dragon would have trouble flying with a horde of flabby nobles on its back, and I know better than most that Barrel isn't great at flying.

Argh. Lost the training obstacles I'd made for him. Guess I'll have to build him some new ones, get him back into peak flying shape. Assuming I care enough to do that, at this point… and… assuming… meh, I'll get to that.

The nobles were busy talking with each other in hushed tones a little ways away, and once I got my bearings I joined in. They didn't have much to offer, of course - the bunch of them were confused and scared shitless by what had just happened… along with, you know, the rest of the week's events. Being stuck in a hole for five days will freak out anyone.

The problem with nobles is their need for a leader. The bastards have to have somebody to lead 'em around by the nose and tell 'em what to do. Up until last week, King Jeffrey had done that for the pompous pricks, even if his leadership had sucked unholy testicles. Now they didn't know what the hell they were gonna do, and they wanted somebody to take charge and take care of them.

You probably figure that I stepped up, diary. You're wrong. I didn't give a shit about leading. I lead work teams, not namby-pamby twats in puffy shirts with fake hair. Nobody wanted to take responsibility, just in case something went wrong and they got blamed for it going wrong, and that would have been a major problem -

- if, uh, the dragon hadn't stepped in.

Yeah. Barrel. Of all people, it was the giant fucking dragon that took the reins of our expedition. Dragging his tired-ass body into the midst of the meeting, Robert still flopped in a scaly seat on his back, Barrel grunted something… dragon-y… and motioned for everyone to sidle back a few paces. No argument there.

Wriggling his fingers, Barrel dug one of his claws - his pointer claw, I guess? - into the grass and dirt. He carved a shape in the soil, one that we couldn't see at first, but one that Edmund easily deciphered when he climbed up Barrel's neck for a better view: a picture of a goblin.

Then Barrel pointed. West. Towards Goblinoster. The message was pretty damned clear: we were going to visit the goblins, because, hell, we had no other choice. Where else could we really go? Especially if our mode of transportation would probably abandon us otherwise? Even if the goblins took us prisoner, they likely wouldn't kill us. Immediately.

Not that night, though. Barrel flopped back down a few seconds later, shaking the ground, and loudly snoozed. He looked exhausted and battered, and when I checked Barrel over I noticed a lot of small, crusted wounds. Edmund and I think that Barrel might have had to fight his way into the castle to come down into the hole, even if he could turn into a bug. Which means that something there can tell he's a dragon no matter what. Who knows for sure, though, because he's… well… well. You'll find out.

I didn't have much time to inspect Barrel. Midnight struck without much warning, catching even the sole Weekendist in our company off-guard. We woke up the following Monday prone in the grass, chilled by the absence of the sun and covered in dew.

After a quick breakfast of… grass… and some plants… we were on our way. And I still didn't give a shit about any of it.


1 comment:

  1. Ah...the weekends...a strange and mystical event that often catches the common folk at the unready. If you aren't careful about it, you can often find yourself blanking out or getting cut off mid sente...