The Dragon’s Quest for Hopper starts off as any other low brow elf seeking a real place in life. He didn’t think the real place would be babysitter to a dragon. Part of him wishes the dragon mother decided on eating him instead of shoving him into this new role. What was he thinking getting involved with Linda or Hartliebe or thinking he deserved more in life than running a beer company. Beer is his life. Or it was. His life now seems a lot different. And scary.
Genres: Adventure, fantasy
Marcello and Dominik
“Who is he?” I ask the basic question while watching Cyro.
Ethan shrugs. “One of the kitchen slaves here. He owes the springs a debt and pays it by working. I assume he has another six or seven years before he can freely leave.”
“That’s interesting.” I hear the door move and turn to see an ugly looking elf walk to us.
“Drop the magic, Marcello. We don’t want you.” Ethan nods to the place between us on the ground. “Just put the food here.”
The elf frowns kneeling between us to place the food carefully here. As he stands, I spot the magic disappear. He is on a level of beauty I am used to from my friends. Wow, he can get any woman he wants. Is that why he ended up tricked into service here? “Welcome. I am pleased to be your server this evening.”
Now that I think about it. We gained storms. No Tait has shown. Could the thunder stick mess with his ability to leave the stick or be known? The annoyance leaves me with mixed emotions. “I’m the new Dragon Hartliebe elf.”
“Oh.” He glances at the other two. “I guess I should expect that given your company.” He moves back to the door. “Anything else?”
“Stay with us a while, Marcello.” Ethan pats the rock on his other side. “We asked for your services and we pay well.”
“Plus the whole Dragon Hartliebe owns us.” Marcello sits down some distance from us. “How is the Master?”
“Mother is well.” Cyro finally comments. I half forgot he was there. He figured out how to be in the water and not upset the stick. He uses it as a pillow absorbing the magic still. “She keeps an eye on me using her elves. Cat may even visit since she has to know where we are.” He sighs sinking a little at the thought.
“We know how much you love your nurse.” Ethan chortles at Cyro’s disappointment. “But we should make sure Dominik is healed before going on the next part of this adventure. By the way what is the next part?”
“We need a boat.” I get out of the water to collect my map from my clothes. They watch silent until I return. “Erin said the air currents make flying in difficult. We could do it, but the battle once we land will be tough enough. Best to make it easy by sailing in.”
“She’s taken.” I add to his interest.
“Shucks.” Ethan pokes at the food. We ate some, but neither of us have had much. Even though we are hungry, the dragon magic keeps us from needing a lot of food. “I hope we get some free girls during this adventure.”
“We’ve met quite a few.” Cyro comments absently. “But Dominik has not seemed interested.” Ethan pulls away from me glancing at Marcello.
“I don’t want guys. I want girls. But it has been crazy.”
“Are you telling me you haven’t been laid since joining the horde?” Ethan whispers the words.
It makes me sigh. Eyes closed, I answer, “I’ve been laid.”
“Made me a bit nervous for a second there.” Ethan chuckles going back to his spot. “Was she hot?”
“Do I know her?” Ethan stares at my positive expression.
“Yup.” I gulp feeling like this may be headed in a particular direction. But I suck at lying and they wouldn’t let me fail to answer.
“Well, who is it?” Ethan pokes me.
I frown slipping into the water so only my eyes are above. I answer into the water, but they seem unamused by my actions.
“You answer all the previous questions, but not this one?” Ethan scoffs arms crossed. “Was it Cat or something?” I dive deeper while his eyes widen. “No way.”
Cyro tilts his head looking at us with confusion. “I don’t get it.”
“He banged your nurse.” Ethan points at me and I go completely under the water. I’ll feel safer drowning in the hot springs than dealing with this set of questions.
The hand grabbing me and holding me out of the water has me seeing things. Her words make my embarrassment even worse. “You aren’t allowed to drown yet, kid.” Ethan looks thoroughly amused by such a turn of events. “And how did you get Ethan to join you?”
“Stopped him from stealing a key.” Cyro rolls the thunder stick a little. “Do you have a way to keep this safe while we travel?”
Cat sighs putting me safely on the ground. “You need me for that? Aren’t you strong enough to…?”
“I can stop it most of the time as long as I am holding it and awake. I can’t do what you do yet.” Cyro frowns pulling himself out of the water to show off the stick better. “Can you help me?” He adds, “Please?”
Cat looks at each of us in turn. “Well, if Cyro asks with such nice words, I guess I have to. Ethan you may want to leave the water.” She scoops a little of the water in her hands. “Step back Dominik. Go near Marcello. He probably needs a level of protection anyway.” I follow the commands while she works magic.
The flash and sparkle leaves me in awe of her. One day I will be able to use such magic. For now I am lucky to able to use Hartliebe’s wand. Once the stick is bound by Cat’s magic, it can rest on the side of the cavern without anyone’s notice. She concludes for our sake, “As long as it is near Hartliebe’s magic, it will cause you no trouble. If you need another round of guard, call me.”
“How?” I step to her really wanting to increase my magical knowledge.
She taps her forehead. “Mind link it to me. Call out with your mind really loud. I should be able to hear it.” Her eyes move to Ethan and then Cyro. “But you two should be able to already. Don’t leave it to the newbie.”
I grab her arm. “I have more magical questions. They seem unwilling or lacking when it comes to…”
“Yeah. I guess I should help you out.” She nods to them. “I’ll help him out for a bit. You two stay here until I return.”
We teleport away from the springs. Leaving the group has me relieved. This will be the first real time away from Cyro since I was marked.
She pulls her hair into a bun before facing me. “I chose a space that can handle magical mishaps. Now, what spell are you aiming for?”
“Uh…” I wince really wishing I could remember what spell I needed to have. “A defense for Cyro’s lightning and fire breathes.”
“Is that why your face looks burnt?” She sighs touching it gently. The magic coming with her touch will heal it. Then she’ll be able to see my embarrassment. “Cyro is such a…”
“Baby.” I conclude for her. “And maybe that heal spell you just used.”
“Alright. But realize, I can teach you how, but you need to understand why before you can use it properly. Memorize my movements. The defensive ones should come naturally. The heal, I don’t think will be your cup of tea, so to speak.”
She starts showing off. I follow memorizing as she works. By the time she finishes showing off the three spells, I am exhausted, but feeling pretty secure with the fire protection spell. I may even be able to hold the key for short periods of time. That is if it wasn’t left with Kristen.
“That should do for now. Next time I’ll show you a few more. That is if you show me these work.” She taps my nose.
“Thanks.” I look up at her. She does not show a single bit of overuse from magic. She handled showing me those spells over and over until I have them memorized. Now I am exhausted and she is perfectly fine. “I have a lot to learn.”
She giggles taking my hand to force me to stand. “You know, at your age and position within the change to dragon, you are doing quite well. Give yourself some time to progress.” She pulls me into a tight hug. The quick teleport spell leaves me dazed and a little sick. I drop to the ground when she lets me go.