Man. Dragon competitions are intense. Like, Cedric-and-Antonia-boxing-as-werewolves intense. I'm surprised they don't sell tickets.
We split our time today watching the Contest and looking for Libby, taking turns so we'd never all be watching the dragons. Finding her is still the priority, and I remain fearful for her the longer she's stuck up here. Some of the indigenous species - sky dwarves, anyone? - are not friendly.
But... it's tough to ignore the Contest. It's so interesting.
I'm not sure exactly what internal logic the dragons are working on, and I gave up trying on Friday. They have their system; I'm just a bystander. Evan nevertheless assures me that they're building to a decision, and should have it within... five days. Aaaaaalways on a freakin' Friday.
Let me describe what happened today. The dragonic competitors began the day with an hour of light exercising and apparent gossip, milling about and chatting in their apparently-silent language. They looked generally amiable - though an exchange between Barrel and Ridges seemed frosty even from our distant perch. Then, all at once, the entire aerie - competitors, bystanders and all! - bolted into the air... and five dragons began wrestling crazily with one another. (Ridges was the winner, as far as I can tell.)
That was just the beginning. Half of the dragons returned to the ground once the wrestling was done while the other half flew off to a different cloudy island, and I've no clue what they did. The dragons still in the clearing below began to rapidly change shape, transforming from lizard to rhino to giant beetle to living lamppost to tiny speck to zombie horse and then back to dragon. They each performed this rotation nine or ten times, apparently depending on their normal size, and the... slowest... competitor... appeared to be the champion.
I... I would have figured on the fastest...?
Once the regular competition was complete, the dragons continued to transform eratically into whatever they felt like until the second half of the aerie flew back into the canyon. The two halves conferred, and two luckless males were booted out of the runnings for some reason. Ridges, one of the fliers, looked particularly upset about the results. I'm sure he had a simply fantastic reason.
Then the entire flock of competitors wrestled with an enormous, octagonal block that reminded me of a child's toy I'd seen for sale in Trademore. I have no idea what they were attempting to accomplish.
Evan did his best to commentate, explaining the logic to the best of his abilities, but his attempts were all for naught. He's only watched two other Contests before, as they happen once every dozen years or so, and they made no more sense than this one. Eventually his chatter turned into vivid descriptions of the capabilities of the different dragons, and we all quietly agreed to smile and nod without processing anything he says. Dude's a little dragon crazy.
The dragons gave up around what Evan assures us is dusk (stupid omnipresent sun), and we retired to his cabin for a dinner of scones and chopped onion soufflee. Evan's a pretty good chef, if nothing else.
I hope Libby's eating well. There's lots for her to forage from on these flying islands... so long as she's careful...
Sigh. I may not sound like it, but I really do miss my wife. Will I ever have my whole family together in a single place? Or is that just too much to ask?
Right. I guess Pubton was under attack the last time that happened. Everyone almost died. Well, nevermind...
Dragomir the Wanderer