Rather I Mourn For Those Who Day And Night Live In Death's Fear

Sarezarth, for all his bluster, wasn’t exactly steady on his awkward gangly limbs yet. He had strength on his side, though, and determination, though what happened next wasn’t precisely what he had intended.

He hit the Shell of Reflection egg with all the force he had intended, but he miscalculated the angle, his face smacking into the shell first, legs akimbo on either side of the egg. The egg, unable to withstand the assault, tipped over and shattered, sandwiched between the sand and the brown dragon who was now atop it. And the occupant of the Shell of Reflection egg, a shiny bronze, lay squished beneath his brown brother and the crushed shards of his own egg.

((Owww,)) said the big bronze, squirming and then managing to find his footing, using the leverage to hoist himself up and dislodge Sarezarth from his back. The brown, still dazed, fell aside to the sand with a /fwump/. ((Well that isn’t how I imagined this going down. Over-rough much, buddy?))

Sarteth leaned down next to Sarezarth’s face. ((Told you.))

((Oh,)) squeaked Hasheth. ((Are you hurt? Either of you?))

The bronze tested his wings, spreading and then retracting them. ((That hurt! But I think I’m fine. Wings seem good, legs work okay,)) he stepped in place as if to test them, ((Yes, completely fine! Well, except for being hungry. Ugh, I’m dreadfully empty.))

((Are you sure you don’t have a pain in your neck?)) Nishikith asked, indicating Sarezarth, still lying dazed on the Sands.

((Ahahahaha!)) the bronze’s laughter boomed. ((Well, there is that, but he seems to have learned his lesson. A little rough-housing never hurt anyone, I suppose. You are forgiven, brother. No harm done.))

Sarteth made a little noise of dismissal. ((A little rough-housing /could/ have hurt someone. We’re just lucky it didn’t.)) She gave the brown a flick on the headknob with one of her wingtips. ((Fool.))

Sarezarth finally composed himself, twitching away at the flick, and clambered to his feet. ((I told you I could conquer anything,)) he defended. ((It was a good fight!))

((Ha!)) Sarteth shook her head at him. ((What I saw was an unliving object knocking you silly.))

((And it’s now in a thousand pieces upon the ground, while I’m still standing!)) the brown pointed out.

((He does have a point,)) said the bronze. ((Good… battle? Or whatever you like to call it!)) He looked around at the Hatching Caverns around him. ((Hmm, well, I’m glad to be out here anyway. I wasn’t in any hurry, but this place does look so much better. Plenty of friends here, and certainly food! I know I smell food somewhere.))

Nishikith raised her, head, sniffing. ((Hmm, I think you’re right. I didn’t realize until just now how hungry I am. Well… hungry and lonely. Not that you all aren’t great company, but I think you all know what I mean.))

((You’re probably bored,)) grumbled Sarezarth. ((I don’t blame you, sitting around all day like this.)) He paced back and forth, tail lashing. ((You, bronze!)) he called.

((Bacayath,)) the bronze answered cheerfully.

((Whatever,)) Sarezarth dismissed. ((We haven’t had a proper chance to test ourselves against one another yet. Let’s go!))

Nishikith sighed a bit and shrugged to her green sisters. ((Sorry ladies. I think this is my cue to go. Have fun with the boys here — or come along with me if you like!))

Without waiting to see who might follow, she sauntered off towards the candidates, seemingly in no hurry, taking her time idly sniffing or looking over each one she passed. ((Well, aren’t you nice… not quite what I’m looking for, though. And you, lovely, good luck to you! And you, hmm… no, sorry, I like the cut of your jib, though.))

Finally she caught sight of the one she was looking for. ((Ah, there you are!)) She ambled over, nudging the candidate gently. ((Sorry I kept you waiting, but it was worth it, eh?))

Hasheth watched her, feeling torn. ((Perhaps I should go…))

((Do what you like,)) said Sarteth with a shrug, approaching the males and bumping against Sarezarth with her shoulder. ((Calm down, you big lout. I don’t think this is the right time or place for wrestling!))

((Who says?)) Sarezarth demanded. ((I don’t see anything here preventing it, or any reason not to! Do you, Bacayath? Or maybe you’re just a coward…?))

Bacayath laughed again, flexing his claws. ((Hardly a coward! Like I said, a little rough-housing never hurt anyone, right? I guess it would be fun to stretch my muscles a little, though I don’t see why you’re so uptight about it. Relax and let’s have a little fun, eh?))

((You are both ridiculous,)) Sarteth sighed.

((Quiet, coward,)) said Sarezarth, but his eyes were on Bacayath, readying himself to pounce again.

Hasheth turned away from the lure of the Candidates, concerned once again by the fighting of her siblings. Surely they would hurt one another, and then….well hurt wasn’t a good thing.

But she couldn’t think of anything she could say that would detain Sarezarth and Bacayath seemed so unruffled by the whole thing.

((Come on fearsome brown.)) Bacayath boomed in his little baby bronze voice, ((Let’s see what you’ve got!)) and he settled in, making the universal ‘come at me bro’ hand gestures.

((This…is idiotic.)) Sarteth rolled her eyes and swished her tail, turning her back on the fight.

With a roar that didn’t sound quite as impressive as intended, squeaking as it did halfway through from his young throat, Sarezarth pounced, calculating better this time, ready for any evasive move the bronze might try to make. ((Now we’ll see who’s the better! Hah!))

Bacayath trumpeted a challenge and instead of evading, the big bronze charged, hitting Sarezarth in mid air and sending both flying into a dune of sand….and Sarteth who hissed with displeasure.

((Idiots!)) she hissed, wiggling her way out from under her two ridiculous brothers, ((Did I not say this was stupidity personified! The battle is not in here you fools! It’s out there! And quite frankly it’s better than being in here!)) And she stalked off, irate and still faintly hissing.

Hasheth winced, moving over to the mess of brown and bronze, ((She has a point? About the battle stuff. I do believe we do….uh…combat out there?))

((Of course!)) Sarezarth agreed boisterously. ((Combat later, too! But there’s no reason not to do it here where we are now as well! There’s plenty of room, and look at all these people here to watch! Let’s give them a show, Bacayath!))

And, delighted to have found someone to clash with at last, the brown threw himself into the bronze again, with no care for the proximity of the greens. ((Move or join in — it’s your choice!))

((Not really my style!)) Hasheth yipped as she scrambled back, squeaking again as Bacayath rolled him and Sarezarth towards her, ((Ack stop it! Stop! HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!))

It was a startlingly loud sound from a little dragon who had, up until this point, been quite quiet. It was an eerie cry, that silenced the whole crowd and echoed like the cries of lost spirits.

It made Bacayath’s skin crawl as he scrambled away from Sarezarth, shaking his head, ((Hasheth!)) he scolded, ((Stop that sound! We’re just joshing around! Testing our mettle! What is life except to be lived!))

Meanwhile Sarteth, her hide prickling from his sisters ongoing cry, hurried to the candidates, arching her back as she pranced along the line, ((Which one of you….which is my chosen one….I know…know you’re here…but…hmmm….)) she suddenly paused and then wound around the pair of legs before her, ((There you are. My Emley. Let us go!))

Sarezarth, startled by the sudden interruption of his combat, looked momentarily bereft. ((Stop that, you little baby! Soppy milk-drinker! You may be green, and female, but you are a dragon, and any dragon who shies away from a little combat isn’t worth being called a dragon at all!))

He leaned his shoulder in and shoved at her.

((Hey, hey!)) Bacayath protested as Hasheth’s sad cry ended with a little hiccup as Sarezarth shoved her, sending the green staggering, ((There is no glory in shoving little people around!)) he pointed out, attention grabbed by the Candidates once more, ((You know, I’m rather hungry. And you know nothing is better after a good rumble than a grand feast! And I plan on stuffing myself! Come Sarezarth! I bet I can scoff more food than you!))

Hasheth quietly slunk off, using the distraction to disappear into her old shadows, where slowly she began to move to each egg in turn, beginning with her own, and gathering up a perfect chunk of shell.

((Might need more gifts.)) she muttered, ((These are gifts to me though.))

Sarezarth gaped after the bronze. ((But we’ve hardly even fought! Get back here! I don’t blame you for fearing me, but I would have thought better of a bronze dragon! Stand and fight!))

((I fear no thing!)) Bacayath boomed, but he kept moving towards the white robed candidates, ((Come on Sarezarth! We will find our seconds and then feast! And then we shall have all the time to wrestle one another! But first! First! We will drink of this adventure! And stuff ourselves silly!))

And he stopped in front of one of the candidate boys, drawing himself upright and fluttering his beautiful bronze wings, ((Come my chosen one! It is time to leave this cavern and eat!))

Sarezarth, following along, watched his bronze brother Impress, shaking with anger and disappointment. ((Coward! Cowards, all of you! What adventure have we had to eat and drink about? We’ve done nothing but sit around and shove each other a little! Are you all so easily entertained? Are you all so easily /bested/? Is no one here a match for Sarezarth? No one??))

He roared to the sky, digging his claws into the sand, when a flash of white caught the corner of his eye. His instinctive reaction was to whip his head around in fury to attack whoever dared to approach him in his grief and anger and frustration… but halfway through the motion, he met the eyes of the owner of the white robe, and all his desire to inflict his pain on everyone else melted away.

((Riliar…?)) he asked wonderingly, as if such a feeling as this had never occurred to him. He turned to face his chosen fully, muscles tensing again — this time in joy and excitement. ((Riliar! Yes! YOU are a match for me! Only you! A true fighter! We will show them, you’ll see!))

The Hatching Sands grew quiet and then some of the people began to talk, some even getting to their feet, as the entire performance came to a close…only…

It hadn’t.

Hasheth looked up from the final piece of egg she carried, all 15 tottering in a stack and saw the people moving to leave….and even the Candidates starting to go too.

She’d been forgotten.

She was invisible again.

A wail broke the silence of the Hatching Sands and Tameketh made a low sound of distress as her green daughter rushed across the sands, clutching her prizes as she flung herself at the final girl in the line up of ladies leaving the grounds.

((Don’t forget me! Don’t forget me Ashabel! I am your own dear Hasheth. Please don’t let me be invisible to you…huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!!))

And the Hatching was complete, the eerie cry of the ghostly green lingering in the air as everyone left the stands.

Hatching Posts

Truth Is The Beginning Of Every Good | A wise man's heart is seldom cheerful | About As Useful As A One Legged Man In An Arse Kicking Contest |

A Heart That Loves Is Always Young | When We Speak Most Fairly, Then We Think Most Falsely | Rather I Mourn For Those Who Day And Night Live In Death's Fear.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License