Hopeful Lights

I was not interested in the humans at first. Not at all.

Thousands of years—or, perhaps, it was the blink of an eye, I can’t be sure—passed before I finally found out why my kind were so enamored by them. Why they found them amusing. Entertaining. Why they risked their lives, and our secrets, in order to interact with them.

After a good long while, I figured it out.

Such small, delicate creatures. So powerless. And yet:

So hopeful.

The beauty of humanity was locked into that fact. Showcased in their faces as the sky lit with stars in the chasm of the night. How enamored they were with the world. How wondrous they found life, even in the darkest of nights.

Such helpless creatures. Unable to grasp their circumstances, unable to withhold the hand of death, and yet:

Still hopeful.

Always hopeful.

At least:

The strong ones were, anyway.

Continue reading “Hopeful Lights”

Timeliness, and the Importance of Timing

“At three thirty-seven tomorrow, I’m going to get attacked by a dragon, and I need you to save me.”

The words were so strange that they actually managed to draw me out of my book.

I looked at Cliff and blinked a few times. As if I might wipe away the serious look on his face. As if I might blink, and he’d stop giving me that look that asked for promises.

But it didn’t work.

“What?” I asked.

He nodded, then repeated the statement.

“Tomorrow, at three thirty-seven, I’m going to get attacked by a dragon. I need you to save me.”

“…you’re joking.”

He didn’t have to say it because it was written plainly, all over his face.

He wasn’t. Continue reading “Timeliness, and the Importance of Timing”

The Reaper, My Love

We were kids. Couldn’t have been older than six, that’s all I know. That’s as far as my memory can reach.

It’s more than far enough.

We were kids, and we were sitting in the barn. Staring at a dead mouse. Well, it wasn’t really a mouse. Not quite yet, anyway. It was still fairly pink. Poor thing. It was trying to be a mouse. It really was.

But it fell.

Instead of crawling or walking or scurrying how mice do, it fell from the rafters. Without even a single sound, it fell.

Failed.

We were kids, and we were staring at the mouse, a giant lump in my throat and a stone in my stomach. An ache spreading through my joints as I thought about how such a small thing had died so soon. He hadn’t even really lived yet, the poor little thing.

And that was when he said it. Staring at the lost life before us, his expression receded in his sadness, he said it.

“One day, I’m going to be the Grim Reaper.”

It was a bit of a bombshell.

So, I’d said, “I thought you were going to be a lawyer.”

As somberly as he could—neither of us really understood it at the time—he said, “Mom says they’re practically the same thing.”

Continue reading “The Reaper, My Love”

Monstrous Instincts

He was not handling it well.

She knew that, and the doctor knew that. However:

With him on the loose, and the other subject on the loose, and the police closing in…

There was only so much they could do. Continue reading “Monstrous Instincts”

Dragon Prince

There are all types of dragons out there.

Big ones, small ones. Ones that breathe fire, or ice. Ones that don’t breathe anything at all. Ones that can swim, ones that can fly, ones that can dig. There are all different kinds of dragons out there, and they all serve a purpose. All have a function. Every last one of them is important.

And I believe it’s the same with humans, too.

The ones with heritage, the ones without. The ones with royalty in their blood, and the ones that know their way around a field.

Even the sassy humans. The stubborn ones. The ones that don’t know when to quit, that don’t understand danger, don’t see it as a problem. Humans that don’t care for heritage. For responsibility or duty. Even humans that chase after something, without regard to what he leaves behind.

Even a human like you. Continue reading “Dragon Prince”

Belying Space

Space is a concept I’m familiar with. That I live with.

You don’t become an intergalactic juggernaut by staying at home. By being freaked out by space. By avoiding it.

But this was different.

This space…

It was something else.

Empty.

That’s what it was.

And that’s what I wasn’t used to. Continue reading “Belying Space”

Dark Secrets

“It’s not that bad this time, I swear.”

“Oh yeah? Well, I guess that could be true. I mean, compared to last time, anyhow. That was really bad.”

“It wasn’t—!—it wasn’t that bad,” I finished, my fire downed down as I mumbled the words.

Really, last time had been awful.

Just not as awful as it could have been, that’s all.

Which didn’t matter. Not now, not then, not in the future. Bad is still bad, right? And, either way, Howard didn’t know how bad it could get.

He just knew this was bad. Continue reading “Dark Secrets”

The Day the Dragon Swallowed Fire

At first, I didn’t like the boots. I felt too clunky. Like some kind of cheap, party clown.

But now?

Now I’m used to them. And I’m grateful for them. Without the boots, I’d have lava stuck to my soles.

I’ve never had lava on me before, but I imagine it’d be ridiculously painful. Most people’s skin doesn’t recover.

So, the boots are actually nice.

After all, lava dragons aren’t called ‘lava dragons’ for no reason.

And I would know.

Continue reading “The Day the Dragon Swallowed Fire”

Holes

There are inevitable things in this world.

Sunlight. Day. Night. Rain. Air. Water.

Things that exist, and persist. Things that keep going, and that keep the world going. There are things that spin onward, regardless of our hand in them.

There are questions.

And there are answers.

But, occasionally…

There are questions without answers.

And that’s a big difference. Continue reading “Holes”