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Thread: Island of Dragons

  1. #1
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    Feb 2012

    Island of Dragons

    Chapter One (Realm of Magic)

    A big place the world is: so many places to live, so many things to see, to say nothing of the stories that one could tell, which is actually why I’m here, to tell stories, and the best way to do that is to start at the beginning. In a secret location, in the most remote part of the pacific, there is an island, a very large island, known to the locals as the Isle of Fire. Though, in all honesty, a better name for it would be “The Island of Dragons”. That’s right, dragons; ancient, mythical reptiles of old, known to many cultures by a variety of names. Some are known as malevolent, damsel-snatching lizards, while others are seen as wise and gentle serpents, said to be able to summon forth rain. But no matter how many different kinds of dragons there, all of them are welcome to this island, with open arms. That’s the point of its existence, you see, to be a place where all fire-breathing reptiles can call home. Every dragon is free to come and go as they please, of course, but as every new century comes and goes, more and more dragons manage to find their way to this island, some even bringing with them the most exciting news from the outside world, even new names for the newly born. However, that's not where our story truly begins; our story is about a young dragon in particular, and his name was Draco.

    Now Draco was a pleasant fellow, and seemed like a normal one as well (as far as dragons go at least). But the sad truth is; Draco’s not normal, at least not by dragon standards. Since the day he was hatched from his egg, this dragon was quite different from all the rest, though that was never made clear in his appearance. On the outside he seemed very normal looking, sapphire blue spines and scales as red as blood, just the kind of thing you’d expect when looking at a dragon. But while other dragons his age could be found flying high in the sky, playing any number of games, Draco spent his days lying in the grass and starring up at them, as they soared through the air like eagles. Some of them even added fire-breathing to their merriment and to be perfectly honest, that actually made Draco very depressed. For you see, as much as Draco wanted to join them, as much as that would’ve made him happy, he couldn’t. That’s what makes Draco different from the rest, he can’t fly. He’s tried to change that, Lord knows he’s tried, but every attempt to do so has ended the same way, with Draco landing face down on the ground. He kept at it, of course, but as time went on, his increasing failures began to get to him, until finally causing him to give up altogether, hence why Draco is always starring up at the sky: he longs for an experience he may never have. Unfortunately though, he does experience the inevitable consequence of being “different”, teasing, particularly from three dragons around his own age; Gristun and his two friends, Tybronea and Farangu. Gristun is considerably corpulent, to point where one can hardly tell he’s a dragon, and undeniably obnoxious, always looking for someone to pick on and someone to tease, no matter how personal or just plain silly his teasing was, and Farangu was no different. In fact, a large number of Gristun’s insults and nicknames actually come from this dragon, particularly the ones thought out for Draco. Tybronea is far less clever in his teasing, and gets his kicks by doing things that would be considered juvenile. Such as swiping someone else’s food when they’re not looking and tripping them when they try to take off, sad really, but still, quite annoying in its own right.

    These three have been tormenting Draco for years, with a variety of nicknames and teasing methods. Sometimes they’d even go as far as to get much younger dragons to tease him, and that’s just…embarrassing. But what stung at Draco the most were the nicknames: Grass Grubber, Dirty Draco, Flightless freak, the list goes on, and the more Draco heard these taunts, he just got angrier and angrier, especially when he couldn’t help but think about them later on, they were that hurtful and scarring. Not day goes by that Draco doesn’t think about what all people of when they’re bullied, how to make their bullies suffer, and for Draco, that meant roasting them alive in a blast of fire. But, unfortunately, that was another problem: in addition to being flightless, Draco is also without fiery breath, the one thing that all dragons are said to do, yet another flaw for Gristun and his friends to poke fun of in some way. Eventually, the time came for Draco to scurry on home and whenever he did just that, Gristun and his crew would always fly over him and chastise him one more time before they went home themselves, making Draco all the more disgusted by the fact that he actually lives near all of them. Truth to tell, in fact, Draco lives near all the island’s inhabitants, because they all live in one place, the Housing Canyon. A massive and spacious canyon, found due south of the island’s great lake and known for its numerous caves that cover it on all sides. This makes it a perfect spot for all the island’s dragons to make their nests and rest when necessary. Draco lived in a cave found in the canyon’s midsection, and because he can’t fly, he had to get there by using the old fashioned way, the dirt path. Every day, this was his only way to and from home and the very fact that he had to use it only made him think about the harsh words of Gristun and the other bullies. They made him angry, of course, but they also made him question if there was any truth to their comments. His wings looked big enough, but he couldn’t fly and as far as he knows, he should be able to breathe fire, but all he ever breathes…is air. This, of course, made the young dragon as depressed as he was angry a mere few moments prior.

    What did all this mean, why couldn’t he do anything? It was all so frustrating, and this combination of frustration, anger and sadness all churned inside the young dragon and made him quite nauseas, as well as upset. It didn’t stop him from going home, of course, but now he was doing so with his head hung low and his tail dragging on the ground. Soon enough, he was spotted by two other dragons flying downwards and noticed them giving him a friendly wave. Not that it mattered to Draco, though, as he just kept on walking without waving back, much to the surprise of the two other dragons. Now, some would’ve considered such a brush off as rude, but these two were quick to notice the depression in Draco’s movements and instead, knew something troubling the young dragon. Still, it was no concern of theirs, so they just let the matter drop and kept on flying. A common practice actually, when Draco’s not getting bullied by other dragons, he’ll occasionally come across some friendly ones, but after being teased for so long, Draco has, truthfully, lost all desire to make friends, so those dragons just leave him alone. Eventually, Draco made it home to his cave, and when he came shuffling in, he was greeted by his mother, Abigal. “Draco, there you are, how was your day?” is what she said and Draco simply walked by her and replied “The same as all the rest, Abigal, same as the rest”. Abigal could sense the sadness in her son’s voice, but before she could say anything about it, the two dragons were soon greeted by an old friend of theirs. It was Draco’s godfather, Clancy. “Abby, Draco, it’s been too long, good friends” is what he said, as he entered the cave, arms held out wide “A couple of days to be exact, Clancy, but, it’s still nice to see you” Abigal replied as she moved in and shared a big hug with Clancy. Draco paid this visit no mind and hardly showed signs of even noticing Clancy, at least until he spoke to him directly “Draco, hey, how’s my favorite godson” “You have other Godsons, Clancy?” “(Chuckles) always the sharpest of forked tongues, eh, me lad?” “Whatever, Abigal, I think I’ll go to bed early today” “But Draco, you haven’t even eaten dinner yet” “I’m not really hungry today” and with that, Draco shuffled off to his part of the cave and was soon out of his mother and godfather’s sight. This gave Abigal time to chat with her old friend

    “(Sigh) oh Clancy, I don’t know what to do, Draco’s been like this for so many years: I can’t even remember the last time he smiled” “Oh, don’t worry your pretty little head off, Abby, I’m sure this is all just a phase, every dragon his age goes through it and it’s always different in some way or other. Take my brother and sister for example: my sister Gucly is ungrateful in every possible way and my brother Quglux is a troublemaker in every sense of the word. As for me, I guess my phase was being too curious and inquisitive, I never knew when to keep my nose out of things. But all that blew over eventually, now Gucly is courteous to everyone, Quglux is the most “by-the-book” dragon you’ll ever meet and I’m world-class explorer” “First of all, Clancy; a couple of trips away from the island hardly makes you an explorer…” “Perhaps, but the nature of the people and creatures I’ve met does” “…and second of all; I doubt that this is a phase at all. I’ve seen how Draco spends his days, just lying on the grass and starring up at nothing, I’m telling you, it worries. I’ve tried to handle this the best I can, but it’s not easy: if I get too involved, I’m being to motherly, but if keep my distance too much and too long, who knows what could happen?” “Ah, I see, stuck between a rock and a hard place, eh?” “No question” “Well, is there any other variable to the problem, any other reason why Draco is upset?” “Well, there’s also that delinquent, Gristun and his hoodlum dragon friends, I’ve seen them tease Draco many times, but like I said, if I interfere then I’m being too motherly, and I know the last thing Draco would want is for his mother to fight his battles for him” “Ugh, Gristun, he’s such a juvenile nuisance, him and those friends of his, and it’s not just Draco either, they tease everyone, I’ve seen it. (Exasperated sigh) I guess it’s no mystery how those three got their names”. Clancy was right about that, you see, because in the ancient language known only to the dragons, Gristun means “Blusterous Bully”, an appropriate name to be sure. As for the others, Farangu and Tybronea mean “Scandalous Tongue” and “Weasely Twig”, also rather befitting names. “I agree, but, lets face it, Clancy, we both know the real cause of all this, right?” “How could I forget? I was there after all” a moment of silence befell the cave after that and then, both dragons closed their eyes as they lowered their heads in moderate sadness, Abigal even shed a small tear in one eye and let it run down her sad, scaly face.

    Meanwhile, as Draco was nestling himself into his pile of straw, he suddenly found himself once again haunted by the same dogging questions; why can’t I fly? Why can’t I breathe fire? What’s wrong with me? Do I even belong on this island anymore? It ate at him and ate him, until he finally fell a sleep, but not for long, because when Clancy had gone home and Abigal was asleep herself, Draco suddenly found himself awake in the middle of the night, maybe it was because heard something, maybe it was because of something else, either way, he was awake. No longer feeling sleepy, Draco decided to tiptoe outside and do a little stargazing instead. That was when he saw a constellation he was all too familiar with, Draco the dragon, his namesake. For so many years, Draco has looked up at this constellation and every time, he’s thought about the story behind it and his own name. Back when Abigal was young and being courted by Draco’s father, Juan, the two of found a romantic sight in the constellation Draco, they never failed to look at it whenever it was visible in the sky. And because it was such an important thing in their lives, they decided to use its name for another important thing in their lives, their newborn son. This is how Draco got his name and ever since that day, the constellation has been an important figure in his family. However, these days, the constellation has apparently lost its ability keep Draco happy and only seems to bring nothing but sorrow to his heart. Most likely because it’s a constant reminder of his late father, yet another heavy and depressing thought to weigh on Draco’s mind, and truthfully, that was one thought too many. Draco finally broke down from all this and decided what he felt was right. So, he took a flat slab of stone and with help of his razor sharp claws, he carved this message into it.

    "Dear Abigal
    I’m sorry, but I just don't belong here, I can’t stay here. I need to find my own way, I don’t know where I’m going, but what I know for sure is; this is goodbye
    Love Draco"

    Once finished, Draco tiptoed silently over to his sleeping mother and carefully placed the slab next to her claws, right before he quietly said “Good by, mother” with a soft voice and a heavy heart. Then, after rubbing his eyes, the young dragon walked out of his cave, climbed up the dirt path and ran off into the cold dark night

  2. #2
    In the fog Charles Darnay's Avatar
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    Dec 2005
    trapped in a prologue.
    Blog Entries
    There are some good ideas in here, but unfortunately your story is like a package filled to the brim with packing peanuts.

    You need to work to tighten up your writing, removing the unnecessary or redundant material. I won't go through it finely, but such an example is:

    "right before he quietly said “Good by, mother” with a soft voice and a heavy heart."

    Three problems with this phrase that can be found everywhere in your piece:

    1. Redundant - "he quietly said...with a soft voice"
    2. mistakes - "good by" should be "good bye"
    3. Clichés - "...with a soft voice and a heavy heart." Heavy heart is an empty phrase. In writing both a fantasy story and a abnormal hero finds out he is special, you really have to be careful to avoid cliches because you will end up using them. In such an overdone genre, it is hard not to.

    Best of luck.
    I wrote a poem on a leaf and it blew away...

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