Aramis the great sat at the writing desk, the wood grain under his hand had culminated with age. Just like his old leather hands that held the quill in shaking fingers. The elegant lines of ink left behind would later leave the readers no inclination of his maladies.
This would be his last letter to the city of Heron, the last letter Aramis would send to the High Mage and his dictatorial rules. Aramis’s time had come to leave the castle and his charge.
King Martis was a fair and just ruler and had led his subjects well for over the last ten years, but a weakness had seeped into the once brave king, the never-ending food on his plate and wine in its skins had proved too much of a temptation. His body once rippled with muscle, now it only sagged with fat.
Aramis placed the quill back into the holder and glanced over the parchment. The missive was to the point and suggest his intentions. He reached a hand into a drawstring bag and pulled forth a handful of sand. He gently let the sand slip past his fingers like the years he had spent in this world.
He chanced a glance to his side where an old, but noble Dragon laid beside a large stone. He tried to remember the surface of the stone when there had taken up residence, he was sure it was black with red vines like the rest of the stone keep that he had called home for many years, but he couldn’t be sure. Now it was a blackened mess by years of Ciara’s fire, she would often breathe her lungs onto the rock until it glowed red, the warmth of the rock had cared for him, and her for decades.
Aramis shook off the sand and rolled the parchment. He picked up the lone candle on his desk and let some wax seal the edges. After, he placed a hand over the scroll and muttered a few words. The spell taxed him little as it only prevented anyone but the intended to open it.
Ciara stirred as the link between them began to flutter. She opened one glorious green eye as her red scales flickered in the dimmer light cast by the candle and slowly cooling rock.
Is it done?
“Yes my love, the High Mage will know what will come to pass, and if he doesn’t act now…well, you know as well as I.”
She ruffled her wings like a cat ruffles its fur, and stretched. Ciara’s long forelegs bit into the stone floor of the keep, the fresh straw that had been laid that day had culminated her bed. Aramis pushed his chair away from the writing desk and stood up on shaking legs.
He felt a renewal of energy as Ciara fed him through their link. He smiled at her and gathered a few items off his desk.
“Are you coming?”
Ciara looked coyly over at the old wizard.
You couldn’t get rid of me when the spell ended, what hope do you have now?
Aramis chuckled and reached for an old leather saddle, Ciara came to his side and bumped him playfully. After a few deft moments, the saddle held securely on her back. She bent her muscular fore leg allowing him to step up to her shoulders and then to the saddle.
She walked over to the large cutout that had severed as an entrance to her bulk, save she smash a way through the door that led to the road. The cliff face beckoned her as it always did, the ecstasy of the open skies tempting her like an old lover.
Ciara snaked her long head around to take one last looked at their home, Aramis smiled and held up the scroll, he muttered a few more word over the parchment and it disappeared, this time the energy expenditure was greater. Heron was over 80 leagues away, the energy it would take to walk there would deplete him to the point death had it not been for Ciara’s huge energy reserve.
Still, he felt the loss like a ripple through his soul. He grasped at the saddle until the dizziness abated.
You should be more careful old man.
Aramis chuckled again.
“Ah, my heart, if I was careful I would have never snared you.”
It was Ciara’s time to chuckle as she turned and leaped into the air. Her massive red wings unfolded and bore their weight as she pumped the air to fly away.
The time had come to act and if the High Mage didn’t heed their warning, well the kingdoms of Lancelin would need some help. Aramis clutched at the stones that would lead him to the ones who would help with the new war. They didn’t know it yet, but they would be the hero’s the stories would tell of.
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