A Dull Knight in the Life of an Old Dragon

A Fantasy Short Story Written By Keith Ahrens

A Dull Knight in the Life of an Old Dragon

by Keith Ahrens

A dull knight with a sharp blade vs. a cranky old lizard with an agenda. Let the hilarity ensue…
 
Keith Ahrens is a retired paramedic and new author of The Underhill Chronicles (Books 1&2 currently out) published by Aethon Books. He is currently finishing Book 3 and also trying to sell a new series. Please see his website: https://www.keithahrensthewriter.com/

Ho there, Foul Beast! I, Sir Gregory, have come to rid this fair land of your terrible curse! Vile, loathsome, denizen of this mountain; you will taint this land no more!” The deep baritone of the knight’s voice echoes through the vast cavern. With a flourish, he draws his sword and holds it aloft; the brilliant white glow reflects off his polished plate armor, illuminating the ledge he stands on.1

His voice echoes through the vast cavern until it fades away to silence.

Oh, do shut up.” Comes an even deeper voice in a weary reply. It’s followed by a huge sigh that sends a gust of hot wind up through the cavern, pushing the knight back a step or two.

Huh?” the knight blurts out. In all the times he practiced for this moment, his limited imagination never came close to forming this exchange. “What… I mean… (ahem) Filthy Drake! For your crimes-”

The deeper voice cuts him off before he can get rolling on the insults again, “Dragon. I am a dragon, not a drake. Don’t they require any higher education for knights these days? Take a biology course sometime. Calling me a drake is akin to me calling you a hairless ape.” The dragon chuckles and fills the cavern with many menacing echoes.

Huh?” the knight repeats, clearly off his game for the moment. “Uh…oh, right…let me start over… I am Sir Gregory of the Gilded Spear, also known as Sir Gregory the Fearless Slayer of-”

Don’t you mean sword?” the dragon cuts him off again.

What?”

You said ‘Gilded Spear’ yet, you are clearly holding a sword. I am just seeking some clarity. Or perhaps you have confused the nature and type of weapon you carry?” The dragon asks in a very reasonable tone.

Wha…What?” the knight sputters, clearly having some trouble with the way this encounter is going.

Oh, no. Did they send a simpleton this time? That’s just cruel.” The dragon laments, his voice dripping with compassion for the poor man.

The implied insult is enough to snap Sir Gregory back into his stride, “I am no simpleton, demon! And of course, I know the difference between a spear and a sword! The Lady in the Lake bequeathed this sword unto me so that I might battle you, the Wyrm Scourge on this land!”

Lady of the Lake?” the dragon chuckles again. “Such airs… I knew her when she was just a daft Little Maid in a Pond. But I guess we all must grow up sometime… but anyway” the dragon shakes his head, breaking his reverie, “… A sword, eh? Doesn’t that mean you’re supposed to be king or something?”

What? No, that’s the Sword in the Stone you’re thinking of. The Lady of the Lake forges weapons imbued with the power to right wrongs and slay evil!”

And she couldn’t have made you a spear? You know, to stay on theme and all?”

Sir Gregory scowls, “To slay a dragon? Don’t be silly. Everyone knows you need a sword to kill a dragon!”

Of course, how foolish of me. I blame it on my immense old age. Please, do go on.”

Go on? Right… okay, where was I?” The light from the magic sword dims a bit as the knight lowers his sword a bit, deep in thought, “Oh, right!” The light flares again. One could almost hear the majestic chords of a choir in the background, “By the order of my Lord and Liege, King Harold the Third, First of His Name, The Merciful Destroyer of Rudeness and-”

Hold on, just one moment.” the dragon interrupts again and a brief flicker of flames light up a small part of the vast cavern, “I admit I am terrible with understanding human names, but seriously… Merciful Destroyer? Do you people even listen to yourselves? And, is he the first or the third one? Make up your mind here, the math seems too complicated.”

The knight opens his mouth to respond but the dragon cuts him off.

No, never mind. Don’t answer that.”

In the pitch darkness of the cavern, the dragon stretches his limbs and lets out a low groan. His movement sets off a cascade of coins and precious jewels that begins as a dull roar and crescendos to a thunderous clamor that lasts for almost a full minute.

The minor avalanche of wealth below sends rumbling vibrations up the stone walls and through the precipice Gregory is standing on. The knight, all alone on a narrow ledge, leans a bit nervously over the edge, one hand on the wall to steady himself. He squints down into the inky darkness, trying to get a glimpse of the beast he came to slay far below him. Normally a rather brave man, the knight finds himself suddenly questioning the sturdiness of the stone shelf he stands on. He tries to ignore the gnawing worry concerning the precarious height he finds himself at as a few pebbles tumble off the ledge by his feet.

This king of yours, is he the one who plays the fiddle or the one who murders his wife in lieu of divorce? Wait, I’ve got it! Is he the one who had the immortal daughter?2 Oh, wait, that one hasn’t happened yet. Disregard the last one, if you please.”

Fiddle? Is that like a lute?” Gregory tries gamely to keep up.

Not the most well-rounded conversationalist at the table, are you?”3

What have the dimensions of my table to do with this?”

The dragon smiles to himself, satisfied with the joke, even if no one else appreciates it.

Enough, Foul Beast! I came here to slay dragons and eat mutton, and I’m all out of mutton!” The noble would-be dragon killer preens a bit at that. He had thought long and hard of that line on his trek to the dragon’s layer and felt it came out just as heroic as he thought it would.4

The dragon stifles a groan. Of all the…, “Of course, Sir Knight, but first, I have a brief questionnaire prepared for just this situation.” More coins cascade down and there is a brief rustle of papers, “Ah, yes. Here it is. Before we begin, do you sign your name or just place a large ‘X’? I ask for notary purposes.”

I am trained in the manly arts of warfare as well as literacy, as befitting my noble birth! I pride myself on being known as a warrior poet of some renown!”5

I’ll just put down ‘night school’ under education then, okay?” he pauses but the knight gives no reaction. Again, the dragon feels his witticisms have gone unappreciated.

The knight, finally getting the sense there is something he is missing, begins to get a bit angry, “Evil Minion of Darkness! What is the purpose of these questions?”

Ah, I’m glad you asked. The reasons are two-fold, actually. The first is to keep accurate records in case you have an heir that will vow revenge on me at a later date. Speaking of which, do you have any children with a flair for violence and vengeance?”

The knight, caught off guard, blushes beneath his helm and sputters a bit, “Well, uh, no… but I have been promised the hand of the Princess for ridding the world of your evil presence!”

Hmm, you should have held out for the whole princess. And since when did murder replace poorly rhymed poetry and a clandestine tryst in the courting rituals of humans?”

Confusion nearly overwhelms poor Sir Gregory, who had excelled at jousting much more than the art of casual conversation. None of this is going the way he was expecting, so he blurts out the first nugget that rolls through his mind, “The whole princess?”

Yes, the whole thing. They really let you carry sharp objects without a chaperone, eh? Anyway, as I was saying, the second reason for these questions, or ‘parchmentwork,’ as I call it, will be the basis of a government I have been working on. I can sum it up as such: Everything that is said, requested or thought of will need to be written down and copied many, many times. Most of these copies will never be seen or used for any purpose, but legions of scribes will be needed for these records. The people will be taxed to fund these scribes as well as the gallons of ink and reems of parchment that will be needed. Then of course, there will be a specific group whose sole purpose is to argue about things that have been clearly written down multiple times, in order for more people to jot down these arguments for others to peruse at a later date for a different argument entirely.” The dragon finishes and takes a deep, satisfied breath.

The gears in the knight’s brain finally grind into a groove, “But…but that’s insane! The peasants will have to work just to fund all these scribes and arguers, not to mention the environmental impact of the deforestation that will occur from all the parchment that is required… And let’s not even get into the soiling of the very air we breathe from the giant mills needed to make all this parchment! Nothing will ever get done, society will never progress and the peasants will be further crushed under the uncaring weight of a government more concerned with this ‘parchmentwork’ than for the people it serves! This is just evil… pure evil…” The valiant glow of the sword dims down to a weak, guttering spark, much like a battery-starved flashlight at this point, but matching the tone of the knight’s slumped shoulders.

Yes, yes. Thank you. I am still toying with the concept of loopholes and layers of redundant middle management, but even I think that might be going too far.”

I should say so! Is there no end to your cunning malevolence? Enough of this, Wicked Beast! Prepare to defend yourself!” He draws himself up to his full height but the dragon stops him before he can raise his sword aloft again.

In good time, Sir Knight. Patience, please. I would think you would want to savor your imminent victory a bit more. And I also have just a few more items of housekeeping to discuss before we battle.”

Sir Gregory stamps his foot in frustration, “What is it now, dragon? More gloating, or have you more nefarious plans you wish to expose?”

Oh, nothing like that, I assure you. Your sword is clearly magical, yes?”

He nods, uncertain if he is giving away valuable information.

Splendid. And is anyone waiting to inherit it upon your demise?”

Well, er, uh… no. Vow of chastity and all that. But if I win the hand of the princess, I plan to sire many heirs.”

Again, I think you would need the whole princess for that.”

The knight scowls behind his helm, having just now caught the inference, “Don’t be crass, lizard. And as I told you, this sword was forged by powerful magics by the Lady of the Lake herself!”

Good then. At the end of the battle, if you would be so good as to deposit it in this pile.”

There is a loud rumble of stone scraping on stone about sixty feet below the knight. A section of stone wall perhaps twenty feet across slowly slides upward, revealing a pile of weapons, all softly glowing various colors. Some even flicker with their own fire or coat the others closest to them in ice.

The ambient light of the lethal pile of magical steel is only enough to illuminate a few feet from the alcove, but the knight gets a good view of a pile of coins and gems carelessly spilled on the cavern floor.

The magic tends to keep me up at night, so I keep them in here but they do make an excellent reading light on occasion.”

Ha, foolish and foul lizard! This is no ordinary magic blade! This is… (pause for dramatic effect) DragonSlayer!”6 He thrusts it into the air, the magic light flares to a brilliant white. In the background, one can almost hear a chorus of unearthly voices raise up to praise it.

Oh, dear me, I didn’t realize it was a special magical sword.” A second section of wall begins to open, reveling another, somewhat smaller, glowing cache, “Then it goes in that pile, with the others. Ordinarily, I wouldn’t ask, but I have given my minions the day off, and really, I’m far too busy to clean up after every knight, squire, man-at-arms or peasant with dreams of grandeur that wander in here.”

The sword’s light abruptly snaps off like a snuffed candle. The Knight’s face goes a little pale under his helm and a cold sweat begins to break out down his back. For the briefest part of a second, he saw the swish of the tip of the dragon’s tail in the dim light. Each spike that adorned its length was almost half his height. Right about now, he realizes his mouth has suddenly become uncomfortably dry and wishes his waterskin hadn’t been left on his horse’s saddle.

Of course, years of training in manliness and sheer arrogance begin to exert themselves once more, so he gathers himself and courageously keeps up the bravado, with nearly no trace of quiver in his voice, “And I suppose my armor goes into a different pile-”

No, Sir Knight, “the Dragon interrupts, “That you can keep on. I find my diet is somewhat lacking in iron. Unless, of course, you happen to have a magic breastplate or codpiece or somesuch. Those tend to upset my stomach a bit.”

Do essential oils count?”

As magic?”

Yes.”

No,” the dragon replies, a hint of a smile in his voice, “But I am sure they will add a unique flavor. Now, I see you grow impatient, so I will skip to the end and go through the last few questions quickly. (Ahem…) Is this quest part of a religious or secular prophesy? Are you now, or have you ever been in a cult or other group with strong anti-cryptozoological leanings? And finally, are you here out of sworn vengeance, oath to a dying comrade or some sense of misguided justice for a wronged people?”

Uh, no, no and I don’t think so…?”

Excellent! Currently, I am the subject of no less than four prophesies7, the arch nemesis of at least a half dozen noble families and are taking the blame for several natural disasters and acts of war I had nothing to do with. I am glad that your death will not contribute to any of that. Just between us, I am completely swamped lately.”

I did not come here to listen to your laments and troubles, refugee from the pits! I have come to eat mutton-”

Yes, yes and slay. I heard you the first time. Very well, Sir Gregory, was it? We will battle, but first, why are you here?”

The knight pulls himself up to his full, impressive height of almost six feet tall, happy to be back on more familiar topics, “Your reign of terror against my people and the Good King Harold the Justly Cruel, ends today! No more will you slaughter our cattle in the fields, nor wantonly set our crops ablaze-”

Hold on a moment, knight.” He cuts the man off rudely, “Why would I do any of those things? I own all the cattle yards, slaughter houses, and most of the farmland in every nearby kingdom. And while I am not much of vegetarian myself, the cattle and the peasants who tend them certainly need to eat. I’d be ruining my own businesses! Wait, did you say King Harold? Short statured human, weak chin, and a bit inbred8?”

Gregory chooses to not respond to the accurate, though less than flattering description of his boss.

There is a brief pause and the sound of more papers being rifled through, “Ah, here it is. King Harold the Spendthrift Miser? Hmm…, that can’t be right. It says here that he is over six months behind in tithe, rent and in arrears for several shipments of beef and grains. Now this all makes more sense!”

The reasons of my King are above my station! I am but a servant of His Majesty and as such, I am charged to carry out his orders.” Economics and words like ‘arrears’ are more foreign concepts to Sir Gregory, so he falls back on what he knows9, “Now prepare to defend yourself!”

The sword flares again as the knight purges all doubt from his mind. (Again, que the angelic choir.) Steeling his resolve, he prepares for his opening attack. “Have you any last words, Scion of Darkness?”

I suppose I will, but I think I’ll save them for a more appropriate time.” He lets his words echo and fade through the huge cavern.

The knight tenses, his well-honed muscles straining under layers of shining plate steel. The keen edge of his sword sharp enough to almost cut the very air around it. The choir, (if one could hear it) lowers to an urgent whisper, full of righteous anger and promise…

The moment stretches into almost a full minute.

The knight, Sir Gregory, feels his muscles start to quiver from holding his heroic pose for so long. He stares into the inky blackness for any hint of movement, coiled and ready to strike at the first glimpse of fang or scale.

From far below, in the unfathomable darkness, comes the sound of cascading treasure and the impatient tapping of a claw on the stone floor.

Well?’ the dragon rumbles.

I, uh… I had thought maybe you would charge at me… you see I have used all my rope just scaling the mountain to get into your lair… and it seems to be fairly long way down.”

Ah, yes. And humans do not fly very well, at least not for very long10. I see your dilemma. Very well, Sir Gregory, we will fight. But first, it seems I have a small errand to run that may require your help.”

The dragon inhales swiftly and puffs out a small, yet very hot stream of fire from his nostrils while turning his massive head in a short arc. All along the walls of the massive treasure chamber/lair torches and brass brassieres catch alight.

The knight blinks his eyes at the heat and sudden brightness but cannot stop his jaw from dropping open in awful surprise. The revealing flames show the knight a true vision of the colossal underestimation of his task.

Firelight reflects off gleaming scales of red and grey, with most being bigger than the shield he carries. Incalculable sums of gold and various bits of treasure form drifts and hills on the stone floor, each bigger than a peasant’s hovel. In the center of all this opulence lounges a creature whose very size boggles the knight’s limited imagination. It’s length, from the spiked tip of its tail to the fanged maw of its mouth would measure the distance of over ten war-horses standing nose to tail.

Casually and without any sense of urgency, the dragon plants its four tree-trunk sized limbs in the piles of cash and stretches its body out, causing the spikes and spines that run the length of its back to clatter together. The seasoned warrior feels a sudden wave of knee weakening fear as he begins to comprehend the sheer size of his chosen foe.

But the worst part, the part that makes Sir Gregory desperately wish there was a privy nearby, is its face. Lupine and lizard at the same time, covered in scale and plates, its skull is more than twice his height, half of which are muscular jaws. A symmetrical collection of various sized horns and spikes wreath the monsters face and head, adding to its menacing countenance.

Seeing the human looking, the dragon’s face stretches into something like a human grin, but more closely resembling a force of nature with an appetite. Wet teeth, the length of a two-handed sword and yellowed with age glisten in the firelight as he lets out a small wall shaking growl.

His eyes, like twin beacons of tarnished liquid silver and made darker with annoyance, focus on the fear-frozen knight, “I believe it may be past time for a change in management.”

Before the astonished swordsman can even think to swing his blade, the massive dragon snatches him from his ledge in one giant clawed fist. With a muttered arcane word of power, hundreds of feet of wall and ceiling vanish as if they were never there, revealing a long, smooth tunnel opening to the twilight air.

With a bit of stiffness but still practiced ease, the dragon crouches before propelling himself into the air. His gargantuan bat-like wings unfurl like a ship’s sail caught in a hurricane. Cool, fresh air rushes past the pair as the dragon beats his wings, picking up speed and altitude. In mere moments, they have covered the entire mile or so of the tunnel and burst out into the clear early evening air, not unlike a freed cork on New Year’s Eve.

The ground rapidly recedes and the knight feels his stomach drop even faster, heights being the one enemy he could never conquer. He stares back at the lack of mountainside and into the lair muttering, “It took me days to scale that mountain… I lost many good men…and my horse…” but his words are lost in the roaring wind.

Daring to look down, the knight feels his bowels shrivel and turn to liquid as the landscape below them falls further and further away. A sense of vertigo and weightlessness cloud his thoughts as his vision begins to dim around the edges.

Oh, no. Is that blood in my claws? Did I squeeze you too hard Sir Knight? …Greg? …Oh my, that’s not blood at all, is it? … how unpleasant.”

In response, the knight, shakes his head to clear it of the embarrassment and the near fainting spell. Stubbornly, he gathers his courage and begins to slash mightily with his enchanted blade at the claws that imprison him. The blade flares and clanks against the hardened armor of the dragon’s scales, leaving barely a scratch in their sheen.

Knock it off, you fool, or I shall drop you on principle.” The dragon stares at the knight until Sir Gregory sheepishly stops flailing away.

Now then, I believe Harold’s castle is to the north, the stone one with the flags and blue slate on the towers?”

Er… yes, but know this Foul Beast, My Liege has hundreds of bowman and siege engines poised to shoot you from the air and a thousand knights waiting to hack your corpse to pieces!” The knight, his sense of righteous indignation returning, shouts into the wind.

Yes, yes, I know.” The dragon responds kindly, “And I am sure they are all as brave as yourself. I daresay I am in for quite the struggle.” He suppresses a grin. “Ah, there it is.”

The wind shifts as the dragon steers into a sweeping bank, “Pay attention now, Sir Knight. I may need you to carry word to the next fool who plucks a sword from a rock or some watery shrew tosses a blade at.”

The knight, underdressed for the altitude and freezing winds, cannot muster an answer through his chattering teeth and ice encrusted beard. Even the liquid in his codpiece has begun to solidify; but hopefully that will help prevent a rash.11

Breaking free of the high clouds, with the setting sun behind him, the dragon stoops like a bird of prey and focuses on the walled city below him. Miles of fertile farmland race by beneath them while herds of cattle stampede in their fields, victims of their primal instincts.

You’re king is about to be fired.” The dragon grins broadly at his own joke, feeling inspired by the freedom of flight and the over-due joy of soaring through the clouds.

At roughly a mile away from the tallest tower, the dragon begins to take a mighty, deep breath. From below, war horns begin to blare and the sounds of general panic begin to waft up to them.

At a few hundred yards away, the dragon exhales a perfectly formed ball of fire the size of a haycart12. It streaks away ahead of them like a ballistic comet thrown by an angry god.

The knight begins to scream as arrows and ballista bolts fill the air around them. To the defender’s dismay, however, even the most well aimed projectile merely bounce off the thick, impenetrable hide of the dragon’s scales. The dragon holds Sir Gregory out in front, facing the castle, ensuring he gets a great view.

The knight stares in horror as the fireball slams into the middle of the tower, detonating with a force rarely seen on this earth prior to the end of the second world war. Chunks of stone, splinters of wood beams and pieces of bodies explode from the impact. Burning and sometimes bloody debris rain down on the city below, setting more fires and crushing smaller buildings.

Without altering course, the dragon swoops in and wraps one massive arm around the dismembered and falling tower top.

Sir Gregory stares in shock as he finds himself briefly face to face with a servant who had the bad luck to be looking out a window of the tower. Before any words can be exchanged between knight and servant, the massive, ancient dragon hurls the remnants of the tower down on the castle proper. It hits with the force and precision of a spear thrown by an angry titan.

The dragon circles the wreckage a few times, occasionally loosing gouts of immolating flames down on pockets of archers. Soon enough, the arrows falter off and the sky is clear once again except, of course for the dragon and the thick black plumes of smoke and flames rising from the King’s seat of power.

The city gates crash open with a loud bang and the roar of a fearful crowd. Peasant and nobleman, knight, and mercenary alike, push and shove their way from the beleaguered city.

With a satisfied grunt, the ancient wyrm circles one more time before alighting in the empty, yet rubble strewn courtyard. He gently sets the knight down on his feet before surreptitiously shaking the wetness from his clawed hand.

What have you done, oh Fell Creature of Darkness? The destruction you have wrought!” the knight wails, falling to his knees in anguish.

I have merely reorganized and opened up a managerial position within my organization. By the way, do you happen to know of any hidden or displaced royalty that may be looking for a job? No?”

The knight just stares in shock and disbelief at the massive monster that just razed his city with little to no apparent effort.13

The dragon, recognizing that this might not be the best time for a recruitment drive, changes the subject, “Oh, cheer up, it’s not that bad. Look here! I believe you’ll find the princess’s hand, along with the rest of her body, in there.” He nods to the burning wreckage of the castle.

Sir Gregory continues to stare up at the massive beast, mouth agape, unable to formulate a response.

Look, I understand your shock. Just take a moment to collect your thoughts and- ouch!” the dragon blurts out, more in surprise than any real pain.

He spins around, tail levelling the stables behind him and spots a lone archer standing atop a pile of smoking debris. Backlit by a much larger fire, one can almost hear a different, yet remarkably similar choir beginning to sing an uplifting hymn. His bow glows with a majestic light as his nocks another arrow, “Just as the Prophesy has foretold, I Allwin the Just, am here to–”

Oh, for Pete’s14 sake…” with barely a thought, the dragon flicks out a single claw, skewers the bowman, and pops him in his mouth. The bow splinters with the first bite and a small cascade of sparks along with a popping sound, fall from his lower jaw.

A few quick chews and a swallow later, ends the short lived, yet heroic tale of Sir Allwin.

Now, where were we… oh, right. Sir Gregory? Greg?” the dragon turns in a tighter circle, careful to not destroy any more buildings needlessly, searching for the knight.

Behind him, a large, man-sized bloody smear on the ground clues the dragon in to the knight’s whereabouts.

Inspecting his hind paw, the dragon begins to lament, “Oh dear. I was just becoming fond of him.”

Almost absent-mindedly, he scrapes his foot off on a pile of burning rubble while looking around. “These humans are becoming such a bother.” The dragon mutters as he takes to the air, enroute back to the cozy sanctity of his lair. “Now I have to get them to crown a new king that I can work with. Obviously, it’ll have to be one that I choose but there are so many details to work out. I may have to write another prophesy and arrange for some dullard to discover it…”

A thought strikes him as he gains altitude high above the smoke and wreckage, “I suppose I could always just pick a random peasant and tell him he was destined to be king… Yes! They always fall for that one. Why are they always so eager to believe they’re adopted anyway?15 Hopefully the next one will take a few generations before they start thinking for themselves again. That will give me plenty of time to catch up on the parchmentwork.”

Far below, amidst the wreckage already forgotten by the dragon, two grimy street kids take this opportunity to find some dinner. They pause from rooting around in the rubble that used to be a bakery and watch the dragon until it is out of sight.

The boy breaks off a piece of a crusty loaf and hands the remains to his sister, “The unfairness of it all… when I grow up, I’m going to avenge the innocent people of this city. I swear by all the Powers That Be, someday I will destroy that dragon!”

His sister, almost a year older and therefore much wiser, replies around a mouthful of bread, “Sure. That worked out just great for the last guy. Besides, destroying it won’t help us much, there is always another dragon lurking in some mountain or mine. No, someday, I will be that dragon. Then things will really change.”

1 Fun Fact: many knights of this time period were considered “warrior-poets.” This title was usually self-imposed and seldom considered the quality of the poetry… i.e., overly complicated prose was often confused for good writing and used very much in the same way a funeral home uses flowers…

2 Dragons have a notoriously poor grasp of the current timeline. 1926 is almost the same as 1326 to them. Really anything before man invented the internet is just one big blur to them.

3 Little known fact: Most historians agree that the vast majority of knight’s tables were rectangular, not round.

4 Tough-guy one-liners won’t gain popularity for a few hundred more years, but Gregory has no way of knowing this.

5 To be fair, everybody loves to embellish their job titles and every writer or poet thinks their work is amazing… if only the right people would read it, they could be famous!

6 Yes, it has two capital letters in it. All the best named swords do.

7 Only one of which involves the dragon fighting to his death. The second one involves a popular series of books that will be written in the 1990’s, the third is related to an obscure tax law and the final one involves a Bar Mitzvah the dragon is obligated to attend.

8 Depending on the country and time, this description is probably too common to be helpful.

9 Mostly violence but surprisingly, also doily making, but that’s not applicable here.

10 Not entirely true. This is entirely dependent on the height one starts at.

11 Prior to antibiotics, a nasty rash or even saddle sores were the downfall of many a good knight.

12 Much the same size as a Ford Escort, just more rustic.

13 In truth, the Dragon finds himself a wee bit winded, but there’s no reason to let the Knight know that.

14 Not that Pete, he’s copywritten.

15 Studies have shown that up to 90% of orphans have undiscovered or unfulfilled epic destinies. Of course, results may vary, world to world.

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