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One day they will return

a fantasy like earth of the past.

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a part of One day they will return, by rizzyrat.

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rizzyrat holds sovereignty over a fantasy like earth of the past., giving them the ability to make limited changes.

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a fantasy like earth of the past. is a part of One day they will return.

17 Characters Here

Kia [1] Rogue dragoness
Corinn [0] Of sky and earth.
Cedare [0] The earth dragoness.
somnium [0] you'll never sleep again
Kharygos the Fierce [0] "Your idiocy amuses me. Please, continue, before I have to kill you."
Gadenai the Great Leveler [0] Eldest son of the dragoness Gaiamat
Ashwise Tomb [0] The forest holds many truths...the question is can you see them?
Riona Raul [0] Exotic miscreant of fire persuasion
{Ad astra} Tanit ; [0] Lost in a dream. Never fell asleep.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Cedare was faced with two, gigantic wooden doors. She paced between them, occasionally nibbling an edge of the foul wood or sniffing the rusted metal. It was as if the doors had virtually never been touched, by anything.
There was no smell or appearance that gave her a clue as to who made them, where they were and where they led to. But under the bottoms of the door, there was light. One was a red light that reminded her of Ashwise's hair. The other had a soft, golden light serving out from the bottom that was similar to that of her previous dream.
She ran her jawline along the reddish door, closing her eyes. It seemed like she needed to make a decision.
She'd follow whatever reminded her of Ashwise. She slipped through the door, and what happened next she couldn't quite recall. It was dark, for a long time. Then the light and heat came screaming in - it looked as though the meadow might have been a pleasurable place before. But it wasn't hair that was red, it was fire.

She growled and turned away to escape the heat. A shadow passed overhead, and she looked up. A bright green dragon soared above, followed by a much larger red one. Her pupils dilated and her heartbeat was in her temples. The green dragon was her, and she'd just had a brutal impact with the ground. Frightened, not sure what to do, she whipped around and tried to fly. Her wings wouldn't work.
How does one escape a dream? She reared up on her hind legs, peering around. She saw figures in the distance. Denna, a woman and child, and .. Ashwise. Finally, a snarl tore her through her jaws. Her claws touched the ground again and she began charging to the woman. It was that witch that Ashwise described. Well now she'd earn her comeuppance - Cedare would rip her apart. But before she even moved ten feet, the world melted away before her into blackness.

Her golden eyes flashed open and she growled.

..::..

Tasarin turned his neck slightly to stare at Gaiamat as he felt his scales brush against hers. Son..?
The first thought that came to his mind was Corinn. But Corinn had never caused earthquakes before.
Shaking his head and deciding not to pursue the question, he took a couple steps after her after she began to move.
We don't know what that is. You're not going alone.

He glanced to Denna. The thought of leaving her again was unthinkable. But it might not be safe for her to come with him. He stood, glancing back and forth to Gaiamat and the others, unsure of what to do.

..::..

Ryan shifted the crystal to his other hands. He looked away, focusing on Gaiamat as she decided to go and check on Gadenai. He wanted to protest her leaving, but fell silent when Tasarin said he would go as well. He felt concerned.
"Okay. Just .. be safe."
He looked at Denna then recoiled as he heard a low growl. It came from Cedare. He moved to a kneel instead of sitting down, unsure of whether she was going to attack something or not.

..::..

Kharygos turned to the source of the noise as soon as he heard it. A cloud of dust was arising off the side of the mountain, rocks tumbling down under it.
There would be no time for Riona to mount. Moving as though he'd practiced it a thousand times, he sprung up onto his feet and lifted Riona up with the padding of his paws. He tried to be as gentle as possible, but at the same time, he weighed their lives over discomfort.
He was airborne within seconds, with his rider clutched carefully in his grasp. His wings beat the air hard as he struggled for altitude. He was on the lookout for Flynn and Somnium, as the dust cloud was already upon the area where Kharygos had been laying only moments ago. Were they already in the air? Or still on the ground?

He began circling the area, keeping his distance from the rocks.

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I am sure it is my eldest son Gadenai, Gaiamat explained to Tasarin. She realized that he did not know of her children besides Corinn. She saw that he was conflicted about what to do. Something in her intuition told her it might be a good idea to bring him along.

He is not far. If Ryan needs me, I will sense it. I'm sure it is the same with you and Denna. Come with me, Tasarin, she said, making a decision for him. She knew it made the both of them restless to linger there.

Gaiamat flapped her wings and took off the ground.

---

Gadenai began to fly down the mountain when he saw the cloud of dust that erupted. He found a clearing, free of large rocks or trees. He dove into the ground and displaced a massive amount of dirt with his wedge-shaped claws. He tunneled, moving stealthily like a subterranean shark. He was drawn to where he felt vibrations from the surface.

---

Riona coughed as dust entered her lungs. She was being held in Kharygos's paw and she felt her legs dangling. She was not used to flying this way with Kharygos, but realized that it the result of an emergency evacuation. She looked down at the ground with a racing heart. Where was Flynn? She had heard him yell, but she did not remember seeing him escape.

"Flynn!" she shouted, desperation making her voice shrill. Her voice echoed amongst the nearby mountains. A few rocks were still tumbling and the earth still trembled sporadically.

---

Ashwise caught a glimpse of a second Cedare charging at Gudrid, before his dream collapsed. He was jolted awake, and he found himself emitting a startled yell. He was still caught in the illusion when he woke and saw Denna near him. She was holding his hand. He sat up and hugged her protectively.

"Denna, you're safe!" he said, his voice still panicked from the tortures he saw inflicted in his dream. Then he took notice of Ryan and the healing gnome, and he saw that he was in the waking world. Gudrid was not there, her child was not there, and Denna and Cedare were not under attack. But it was still very real in his mind. His body was shaking. He pulled away from Denna, but he looked at her with haunted eyes.

The healing gnome tried to calm him. She wiped away the herbal mixture from his forehead, and then she stood and tried to assess what he was going through. He was in shock. She uncorked a canteen of calming tea and bade him have a sip.

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Flynn lifted his arm to shield his face from the wave of dust rising around them. He heard his name called and reached out feeling for Somnium. From the distance he could hear in Riona's voice she was off the ground. Good. He moved blindly to Somniums back. He managed to get awkwardly situated and tapped her scales. When somnium knew Flynn was safe with her she spread her wings ignoring a pain in her right ring and took off for the sky. Flynn could tell through his bond with his dragon she had been injured in the slide but was trying desperatly to get her rider to safety. He grit his teeth and cleared his eyes of the dust, able to see now. As they rose from the cloud of dirt and rock Flynn caught the sight of Riona hanging from Kharygos''s paw. He nodded in her direction and called out to say he was fine.

.................

Denna glanced back at Tasarin, seeing him and Gaiamat preparing to leave. Be safe. she called through the bond, turning her attention back to Ashwise. She watched as he woke and gave a shout. Her eyes went wide when he hugged her. She nodded softly already knowing what kind of dream had plagued his mind. "I am safe. We all are." She smiled softly when he pulled away. "They must have found a way to trap you in those dreams..." She shook her head and sighed glancing at her arm.

Denna watched the healer work, trying to get Ashwise to drink something. She kept her hand in his, trying to be reassuring. She didn't know what kind of dream he had, but she knew it was horrifying. "What happened?" She asked softly. Perhaps if he talked about it it would ease the fear and pain.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Deciding to take Gaiamat's word, Tasarin turned and followed Gaiamat into the air. The trip would be quick, he was assured. They wouldn't be long.
He knew it was time to fly more silently, so he glided high above the tree tops. It was slightly more difficult to track with his eyes when it was dark, so he simply trailed Gaiamat's scent. If it was hard to see her, then Tasarin himself was barely visible.
The flight was helping calm his nerves, like it usually did.

..::..

Kharygos's raptor eyesight saw Flynn and Somnium emerge from the dust cloud only moments after he and Riona. He adjusted his position and flew towards them.
His chest heaved in a sigh of relief. No one seemed to be too badly hurt.
What was that all about? He asked tensely, once he'd caught his breath. It may have just been a quaking of the earth, as it happened many times at Kharygos's home. But the rockfall hadn't even come with a telltale warning. Kharygos hated surprises.

He used his peripheral vision to try and find a peak to land on, so Riona didn't have to be tightly clutched in his potentially dangerous talons.

..::..

Cedare rolled over onto her feet, similarly to a cat. In a couple of bounds, she was just next to Ashwise. She crouched down protectively where his head had just been. Her golden eyes flitted from Ryan to a healing gnome, and then to Denna.
The short encounter of the dream she'd experienced had shaken her up; her ears were laid back and her tail was lashing. She was obviously disturbed.. and so was Ashwise, it seemed. But seeing him and the others safe was a relief.

The gnome's presence told her that Tasarin had returned. Ryan, too, was here. She wondered where Tasarin and Gaiamat were. Then she flinched, hoping that they hadn't seen Ashwise and herself in such a pitiful state.

..::..

Ryan stood up, sighing. Tasarin had left only moments ago. With a shout, Ashwise was awake, and seemed to be in a state of shock. The healer was on it, however, so Ryan felt like his job was complete. He blinked, and when his eyes were open again he was met with Cedare's glare. He hadn't even seen her wake up. She was completely still, and he decided it best not to speak with her right this moment.
He sat a little distance to Denna, wanting to hear what Ashwise might share.

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Riona was surprised by the ferocity that struck her when she worried that Flynn had been lost in the rubble. Once he appeared as Somnium lifted him, her face lit with thankfulness. If she were not constrained by Kharygos's talons, she would have ran to him.

"It ruined everything," Riona remarked after Kharygos expressed his dismay about the sudden rockslide. Then she stiffened and her eyes darted to Flynn. "Do you have the man's book?"

---

Gaiamat was clued by Gadenai's scent, as well as the subtle vibrations he left in the rocks. It seemed like a short flight when she reached the start of the landslide. After that, following Gadenai became more confusing. She stopped, hovering over the top of the rocky cliff, when her nose caught the scent of something foul and new to her.

Do you smell that? she asked Tasarin. Her lips curled back from her teeth in distaste.

---

Ashwise met eyes with the healing gnome and was surprised to see her there. That meant… somehow she had left Gaiamat's cave and traveled a far distance. He would not have guessed that she had actually ridden Tasarin. Gratefully, he took a sip of her calming tea.

Denna asked him what his dream entailed, and Ashwise hesitated. He did not want to revisit it, and he did not want to overwhelm Denna with the depth of his feelings for her. "It was a paralyzing nightmare… I'm sure it was like what happened to you, Denna. Everything I… cared for… was under attack, and I could do nothing but watch. Cedare--" he met eyes with her--"Cedare was brought down again by the red dragon and his fierce woman rider. Denna…" he looked back at her. He realized that she was still holding his hand, and this gave him courage. "You were in the grasp of Gudrid… and Gudrid's child was there staring at me. And it was clear to me that I was the father."

After he spoke this, he noticed that Ryan was present as well. Ashwise became self-conscious and dropped Denna's hand. "But, it was only a dream. I'm glad it has passed," he added, shrugging off his shivers. "I'm glad you have come, Ryan." He wanted to acknowledge Ryan. He always tried to treat Ryan with respectability, although he did not feel that they were close friends.

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Flynn looked around patting his pockets and looking at Somnium. "No...." He growled and grit his teeth. The book was gone. They had lost their way into the mans mind. He looked at Riona and shook his head. "I do not have the book." He snarled, more to himself then anyone else. He looked at Somnium. "We need to land, Somnium is injured, not badly, but more then i am comfortable with." He ran his hand over her scales. After a moment he looked at Riona. "Are you both alright?"

..................................

Denna watched Ashwise as he spoke. As she assumed it was a dream like hers, horrifying in an almost too realistic way. She tilted her head to the side hearing she was apart of it. She had been attacked in his dream, along with Cedare. She glanced a Cedare and smiled softly. "We are alright, though i think Cedare must still be very sore from earlier." She looked back at Ashwise when he dropped her hand. "It will be hard to sleep for a few days, but it was a dream. I don't know how they do that, and it will stay with you for a long time im sure, i still feel the memory of mine, but it will gradually fade, to a less horrifying memory." She rubbed her arm thinking about her own dream. "I am sorry you had to go through such a nightmare."

Denna glanced up at Ryan. Out of the three riders 2 had experienced nightmares so far. "be careful Ryan..." She spoke with a worried tone. "You and Giamat could be their next target. I doubt Gaiamat would willingly let harm come to you, but i get the feeling they are good at surprise attacks. Perhaps we should all stay together for a short while, until Ashwise and Cedare have fully healed?" She posed the question to everyone.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Kharygos's ears lay flat. After only one use the book was gone? Such a waste.
He would try to search for it, but it would be futile. He heaved a sigh. Yes. I am uninjured, but I would like to land as soon as possible. He looked down at Riona. He was concerned for her mostly now, but hoped that Somnium would heal up soon.

..::..

The rocks would explain the sound.. it seemed like a violent rockslide, at that. Tasarin observed it silently, also taking note of a sort of stench that grew stronger as they flew past. Gaiamat brought it up.
It's repulsive, he responded, nodding his head. Could it have been a skunk crushed by the rocks? His snout wrinkled as he scanned the landscape below. Is your son nearby? We could talk to him up higher.. away from that smell, he suggested.

..::..

Ryan nodded at Ashwise. "Glad to help." He smiled quickly and stood up. Not wanting to stray too far, he only took a few steps to get a better view through the trees. He'd been scanning the sky regularly for signs of Gaiamat or Tasarin, maybe even Gadenai. To be honest, though, he was hoping that Gaiamat's don would not be the only one returning. That would be awkward.
He sighed through his nose, and wished Ambrin was with him at the moment.. but she'd stayed on Gaiamat. Denna mentioned his name, so he turned around. "Oh .. yeah. Strength in numbers. It's lucky we have such brilliant people on our side." He said, subtly thanking the healer. "And dragons too," he added hastily, not to forget Cedare, who was eyeing him. She had been quiet the whole time.

He was sure that sticking together would be the best thing for now. He wished that the two dragons would return quickly, so they could uphold that.

(( There's not much for Cedare to say or do at the moment .. oh well. I'm nearly off to go claim free candy. Happy Halloween, everyone~))

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Riona made a distinct "Grrr" sound when Flynn confirmed that they had lost the book. It was a definite loss, especially to her, having been the one to procure it. She did not even know if their recent dream attack had been all that successful. Maybe Somnium had been interrupted before she could really do some damage.

"I'm fine," she answered, the annoyance still in her voice. "Please, Kharygos, put me down." She was impatient and the pressure of his talons was beginning to form a real pain in her ribs. It was a very uncomfortable way to be carried by a dragon.

---

Gadenai lay deep under ground, not far from where the party of the dream and fire dragon were located. He felt the impulse to quake. A spasm began in his spine and then grew into wild shaking as it exited his body. The earth quaked for ten seconds, and then calmed again.

---

Gaiamat was concerned that she would have trouble finding Gadenai, when the earth began to shake again.

That's him. He must be down in that valley there. Probably underground, she said. She swooped down and noticed that the stench was growing stronger. It was dark and smoky and she realized that it was the unappealing scent of another dragon.

Tasarin, do you recognize it? she asked. She inhaled deeply. Two dragons, I think… Tell me it's not them...

---

Ashwise was somber as he considered what Denna said about the effects of the nightmare. He felt sympathy for her, knowing that she was still haunted by the nightmare she went though.

"Where will we stay?" he asked Denna. "Do you suggest we construct some kind of shelter, Denna?" He felt vulnerable without shelter. He missed the security of Gaiamat's cave, but most of all he missed the little hut he had built for himself in the forest.

"I brought just the thing, Ashwise," the gnome healer piped in. While the others had been talking, she was busily working in the periphery around them. She scurried around and was sowing seeds around in a wide circle. "These will give us shelter, you will see…"

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Flynn sighed and nodded. "We will have to come back in the morning, see if we can dig the book out, maybe save a page or two." He shook his head and looked at Somnium. "Let's land." He said softly. Somnium went towards the ground when she heard a grumbling sound from the ground. She waited a while then landed softly, limping on her front leg. "Earthquakes." She grumbled.

Flynn slid from her back and went to check her leg. He glanced up towards Riona and gave her and Kharygos the sign it was okay to land. He could feel a building anger in himself. They had lost their biggest connection without even being able to read all of it. He sighed and focused on his dragon's leg, wanting to keep himself from becoming to angry.


_______________________

Denna chewed her lip thinking. Where would they stay... Where could they? She shrugged. "If they got in your head Gaiamat's cave might not be safe anymore." She sighed and looked around, feeling insecure where they were. She smiled softly and looked at Ashwise trying to be calming. "It will be okay though im sure." She smiled lightly taking her hand off her arm. She watched as the healer started walking around laying some seeds down.
"What are those?" She asked softly. They would give shelter? She tilted her head, her interest taking her mind off the attack on Cedare and Ashwise.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Kharygos's ears twitched when Riona asked to be put down. It was safe, and his foreleg was getting sore, anyway. He silently drifted down to earth and landed near Somnium. He gently set Riona down and crouched, wary of any other shifts in the ground. He agreed with Somnium; he hated earthquakes. Kharygos was already vulnerable on the ground, and the last thing he needed was to fall over.
Flying was so much better. He tensed as a smaller rumbling came and went, only lasting for a few seconds. His ruby red tail twitched and lashed as he slowly calmed down. He thought about what would happen if he were to be crushed, by the rocks. What a boring death.

..::..

Tasarin tried to compare the scents with anything he knew. He, too, smelled dragon underneath the stench. Runes, he suggested. Dragon texts, as they are being imbued to stone. A sort of magic, perhaps?
His heartbeat sped up when the dragoness spoke of the scent of two dragons. It could be. Tasarin was uneasy. Even if it was the same two who attacked the young rider and dragon, should they investigate? Of course, he would gladly help gain Cedare and Ashwise's vengeance. But if there were only two dragons versus two more with riders.. something could go wrong. We could ask your son and see if he knows something.

It seemed that Tasarin would prefer the stealthier route rather than full-on confrontation.

..::.

Ryan took a few steps inside the circle of seeds so that he could see what would happen. He wondered what might grow. Images of a mansion made of flowers went through his head, making him smile at such ridiculous thoughts. He could write a story about something like that, maybe. Only instead of seeds, there would be beans. Magical beans! And they grew into an enormous vine that would give access the sky. He zoned out, thinking of how he would start such a tale.

Meanwhile, Cedare had relaxed enough to speak again. I don't think I'll sleep again for a couple days.
She shook her head, then began removing leaves from the horns on her head. She lifted her paw to do it properly.
When she was done she stood up to move around - pacing. She eyed the place where the seeds had been put, waiting to see.

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Gaiamat noted the caution in Tasarin's reply. She shook her head when he suggested that they ask her son what he knew. If I can find him, Gaiamat said. Usually he finds me first. I think he is hiding.

She flew down the hill side a ways and found a large hole in the earth. Ah, he is tunneling. She bowed her head towards the hole and spoke in it: Gadenai. It echoed.

His mother's voice traveled to Gadenai where he lay in the earth. It was partial telepathically heard, and partly audible. He dug a way for him to turn around and began tunneling back the way he came. He was going away from the party of the fire dragon. When he reached the opening, he stopped when he was still submerged. His yellow eyes glowed in the darkness, looking out of the tunnel. He was looking at Tasarin. Who is this?

---

The gnome finished putting the seeds round in a circle. She stepped inside of the cycle, next to Ryan. She clapped the dirt from her hands. Also, the sound of her clapping made something activate in the seeds. At an accelerated pace, seedlings began to emerge from the ground.

Ashwise was in awe of this demonstration of plant magic. "This is what you had been telling me about," he said to the healer in sudden recognition.

The seedlings became thicker and taller as the minutes passed. The gnome walked about checking on all of the seedlings, and then she moved to stand in the center of the circle. "Ryan, come here. I need a tall person," she gestured to him. She reached into her sleeve and pulled out another of her crystals. This one glowed green. "I need you to hold this up as high as you can. The plants will grow towards it. They will form a dome around us."

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Flynn fell silent finishing up with Somnium. He took a seat next to his dragon and looked up at the others, brushing his hair from his face. "We should wait here, until morning. When day breaks we can return to the sight of the slide and dig out the book, or part of it if nothing else. I hope we can find it anyway." He sighed and looked down at the ground. He looked at Somnium who gave him a small purring sound.
I am well. Do not worry. She spoke softly. Flynn nodded and rubbed her scales. "Good." He looked to Riona, then Kharygos. "Are you both well?"

... .... .... .... .....

Denna looked around, watching the seedlings grow. They were going to be encased in a dome of vines. She smiled softly and stood, going to look at the vines up close. "Fascinating." She spoke softly, looking down at the healer. "This just from some small seeds?" She asked in complete awe. She grinned and turned back to the plants, brushing her fingers over them. She had never seen anything like this before. "Absolutely fascinating." She grinned and went to Ashwise. "Is there any other interesting things you know?" Looking between the healer and Ashwise.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Tasarin blinked. Tunneling? Ah, right.. her son must be an earth dragon.
This was going to be interesting. He waited until a pair of glowing yellow eyes from out of the darkness. Tasarin realized that he'd have to introduce himself. One of his large front paws slid in the earth as he moved forward. I am Tasarin of the Nightfall. I'm acquaintences with the dragoness Gaiamat. He presented this politely and calmly. The fact that he couldn't see this dragon daunted him.

Not that it was important. He wondered how large this earth dragon was. Taller or shorter than himself? Tasarin assumed that they must be around the same age, since he was Gaiamat's son. Tasarin blinked again and cleared his thoughts. Why was he thinking about that anyway?

..::..

"Oh.. alright." Ryan went to hold the luminescent green crystal. He stood in the center of the circle and shifted to the tips of his toes, as high as he could. The plants were growing at amazing speed, rising up. However they seemed to be turning towards the crystal, as the healer had said. He'd never seen something like this before. "This is amazing.. are there more, at Gaiamat's home?" he wondered aloud.

..::..

Cedare sniffed at the plants as they grew, quickly, sprouting out of the ground like the rocks she could call forth. She adjusted herself so she wouldn't be in the plant's way. She then looked at the sky, hoping that the plants wouldn't cover it completely. She anticipated Tasarin and Gaiamat's return. If they were to be attacked by those monsters.. her body shivered just thinking about it.
But they were strong - stronger than her. She knew that. Hopefully she and Ashwise would equal that power some day. She breathed a sigh and lay back down again, not really feeling like talking.
Perhaps they would set up a watch.

..::..

Kharygos nodded briefly. Yes. But rather drained..
Especially after such a long day. They had traveled far and then fought (which he was fiercely proud of). But he hadn't rested much along the way. Unless I'm needed, I want to sleep for a little while. And while he didn't say it, he wanted some time to think by himself.
He moved a short ways away. If they wished to talk, they wouldn't have to quiet themselves that way. He curled so that his tail touched his snout, and shut his eyes.

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Riona watched as Kharygos moved apart from them and curled up to sleep. She looked back to Flynn as he was rubbing Somnium's scales. She felt… upset somehow. Perhaps she was still rattled by the rockslide.

"I'm…" she began to answer how she was. "I'm going to take a walk." She opened her mouth as if to say more, and then she abruptly closed it. She left their circle and began to pick her way over the overturned rocks. It was dark, but she liked the risk of walking such uneven ground. She always considered herself sure-footed.

She walked fifteen minutes in the dark, and was fortunate to not have a major stumble. She stopped when she came to a small flat area, where it seemed like a good place to build a fire. She gathered some wood and struck her flint. Making fire came easy to her. She looked down at the flames and found solace.

"Riona." She heard her name coming from the flames. The flames twisted so that a face could be faintly seen. Riona tensed. She knew him--he was a jinn from Razikstania. She was not expecting to see him in this new land.

"It is you again," Riona spoke to the face in her native tongue. "Majhebah."

The face smiled and gained more definition. It could be seen that he was a man with no hair on his head and a small goatee on his chin. His eyebrows were thick and curling and he had an impish face.

"You have done well, Riona. Accomplished much," the jinn spoke in a wheedling voice. "I see that you have a dragon now, and fancy armor… so far you have come."

Internally, Riona agreed. She had come very far. And it was all help to this jinn. He had granted her what she needed to survive, at a time when she had been very desperate.

"And yet, still you are not happy," the jinn concluded. "Riona, I can grant you complete happiness. I know what stands in your way."

At that moment, the face disappeared from the flames. Riona turned when the jinn appeared in his flesh form, sitting beside her. He had pointed ears and smoke constantly drifted from his skin. He put a caressing hand on her hair. In the other he handed her a glass bottle. It was empty.

"All I ask is a little bit of dragon blood," the jinn said. "It's a small amount, and you already know several dragons. It will be easy for you."

Riona took the bottle and weighed it in her palm. "Very well," she agreed.

---

Gadenai slowly moved his head forward to meet Tasarin. Gadenai was not a handsome dragon, and in fact was very ugly to behold. He was squat and his face was covered in crags and horns. Half of his face was still in shadow, and he did not care to show the rest of himself.

You must be Gaiamat's new mate, Gadenai assumed. He never saw his mother around male dragons unless they were her consort, a position which was prone to change every century or so. I am Gadenai, her first son, and a son of Mordenai the Earth Shaper. I suspect that you are powerful to be chosen by my mother, Tasarin of the Nightfall.

Gaiamat looked with surprise at Gadenai. She had never seen him so… outspoken. He seemed to take an immediate liking to Tasarin, which was rare for Gadenai to warm to anyone so quickly.

Tasarin's rider and my rider are friends, Gaiamat explained, although she did not directly refute the assumption that the younger dragon was her mate. Her eyes seemed to hide amusement.

---

The gnome, too, looked somewhat in awe of the plant magic she had started. "I have never seen them grow so fast," she said. She looked to Ryan. "Gaiamat's cave does not foster this type of magic. Although… I did grow the vines that conceal the opening of the cave, behind the waterfall."

Ashwise felt warmed by Denna's enthusiasm for the vine shelter. When Denna came towards him, he gathered his strength and rose to his feet. His body still ached from his crash with Cedare. He put his hand on his neck and rubbed it. "I can't really do anything as interesting as this," he said, gesturing to the work of the gnome. "When I moved south, I built myself a hut in the woods. But it took me weeks to do, and this is happening in minutes." The vines were still growing as he spoke, and there was still a hole in the top.

"Let's leave it at that," the gnome said. She snapped her fingers and the light in the crystal died out. "We need a hole to let out the smoke from a fire, and to speak to Tasarin and Gaiamat. I'm afraid they might have to sleep outside…" She looked around. Clearly there would not be enough room for two more full-grown dragons.

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Flynn glanced up when Riona said she was taking a walk. He nodded and waved to her. "Be careful." He smiled softly. "Holler if you need help." He watched her go before turning to back to his dragon. He hummed an old song to sooth Somnium. She was a strong dragon but she was still young and he was worried. As he hummed Somnium watched Riona and snorted, a small puff of smoke coming from her nostrils. She turned her eyes on Flynn. When he glanced up to meet her gaze he could hear a short dragonlike chuckle.

Are you mating with miss Riona? She asked with a dark glimmer in her eye. Flynn felt his own eyes widen slightly and his jaw went a little slack. "Well... " He started unsure how to finish. He knew there was something between himself and Riona, though he wasn't positive of the extent. "Possibly." He said finally as he finished with Somnium's leg.

Only possibly? She asked shaking her head, more smoke coming from her snout. Flynn i would expect more from you. You should know by now there are two things wrong with that statement. For one i thought you would have known it's very hard to lie to your dragon. She leaned forward and snapped her jaws slightly at him. Secondly, im a dragon, i can smell your hormones. Flynn crossed his arms and shook his head. "Mind your own business would you?" He kicked a little dirt towards his dragon. Somnium snickered and laid her head down on his lap.

..... .......... .........

Denna watched Ashwise stand and shook her head. "You should rest still." She said softly. "We have plenty of time and you should not strain yourself." She chewed the edge of her lip watching. She could remember how horrible she felt after her dream and the fight she had been in that day was nothing compared to Ashwise and Cedare's.

She listened as he spoke about his hut and smiled. "Im sure it's still incredible." She shook her head. "All of this is so interesting." She smiled getting a look of wonder in her eyes. She had always wanted to learn and see more. She looked up through the whole in the vines. "We will be able to speak with them when they get back?" She asked, just wanting to make sure. She didn't like being separated from Tasarin.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Tasarin dipped his head in acknowledgment to Gadenai's words. He was a son of Mordenai .. and Gaiamat?
He'd just gained a new level of respect for the dragoness. As he was about to make a comment, Gadenai said something else, and he froze. His claws flexed in uncomfort.
Tasarin thought about how to put his words politely while regaining his cool composure. I appreciate that you think so highly of me .. however, Gaiamat and I are simply friends. He gave a sideways glance to the dragoness while he said this.
The black dragon respected Gaiamat highly, but the very thought of that circumstance would seem very awkward to him.

..::..

Ryan nodded at the healer. The most magical place he knew was Gaiamat's cave, but there wasn't natural forest there. It's wasn't too surprising.
"I hope so," Ryan agreed with Denna. He didn't want to not talk to Gaiamat. He missed the dragons already.
He turned his eyes to the hole that let the sky visible, hoping to see them return. Perhaps it was just a Rider's instinct, or Ryan's personality, but he was anxious. I could just be obsessed with the dragons, he thought to himself. It was true, though. One who had experienced so much - delved into a world of magic and to travel places no human had been before - would not want it to be taken away.
His ankles were beginning to get sore, so Ryan sat down and leaned against the vines.
It was cool, but not cold, to him. They might need a fire.

..::..

Cedare flicked her tongue out of her mouth. I will sleep outside with Tasarin and Gaiamat, she said determinedly. Cedare didn't want to feel like the one who needed to be sheltered. It may not have been a wise decision, but her ride wouldn't let her otherwise.
She eyed the entrance at the top of the vines, wondering if she could possibly fit through. Not yet, though.

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An hour passed, and Riona returned to the company of Flynn, Somnium and Kharygos. She stepped slowly into their circle. It appeared that Kharygos was asleep. She inclined her head at Flynn and Somnium to see if they slept as well. Her hand brushed against the empty bottle fastened to her belt. The jinn had given her twenty-four hours to procure this dragon blood. If she waited longer than that, he promised, she would not be granted what she wanted.

---

Gadenai was surprised by Tasarin's answer. How can a dragon and a dragoness like my mother be simply… friends?

Gadenai, it's true, Gaiamat retorted. Now tell us why you have been quaking all over this valley?

I smelled a fire dragon and a dream dragon, Gadenai replied. I do not favor either of those types of dragons… and it seemed there was a third smell which I could not identify. A sort of smoky smell…

---

"Surely you will be able to speak with them," the gnome affirmed for Denna and Ryan. She sat down to relax, putting her hands on her knees and exhaling deeply. The magic she had used had taken a toll, and she felt the need to recuperate.

Ashwise did not like the idea of Cedare sleeping outside. "Cedare, you must stay in here, at least for this night. Don't even try to fly up there." He noticed her eyeing the entrance and feared that she would push herself too fast.

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Flynn had finished patching Somnium's wounds shortly after their conversation. He laid down at her side and thought he hadn't felt tired, had fallen into an easy sleep almost instantly. In the back of his mind he heard Riona return but couldn't bring himself to wake back up. Instead he rolled over and gave a sort of mumbling sound before drifting fully back off into sleep. Somnium had her head on her paws, softly sleeping beside her rider.

.............

Denna looked at the gnome and smiled nodding. It put her slightly at ease hearing the healers words. She didn't like the idea of being kept from Tasarin for too long. It was uncomfortable and she could see the same discomfort on Ryan. She turned and gave a small smile to Ryan. "Well even if they must stay out there, Tasarin and Gaiamat are both strong, and they are together, i don't think many creatures of any kind would stand a chance against either of them." She spoke softly.

She looked at Cedare and nodded agreeing with Ashwise. "Cedare you are still injured. You shouldn't push yourself quiet yet." She smiled lightly.

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#, as written by Lurelle
Tasarin nodded. Yes, we picked up on those as well.
He felt that Gadenai should also know why he and Gaiamat were especially concerned, so he began to explain the short version. These scents may mean something important, and dangerous. A couple of friends of ours were attacked just recently, not too far from here. They described their attackers as two people we met long ago at a volcano.
The scents we're picking up on may be them and their .. dragons.
Tasarin tried to clear the story up as much as he could. He did pause before saying 'dragons' because he wondered how such foul, low-life creatures could call themselves dragons.
Of course this may create an opportune moment for revenge.. he trailed off. So there, that was it. He'd wanted to repay Denna's suffering again to the fiery pair, and now Cedare and Ashwise's as well.

..::..

Cedare's tail whisked against the ground. She wanted to say she was absolutely fine. But they wouldn't believe her.
She lowered her eyes, resisting the temptation to look skyward. A disgruntled sound rose from her throat and she shifted back so she was still crouching.
Although her pride wanted to defy Denna and Ashwise and fly up anyway, the thought if making them unhappy would have hurt more.

..::..

Kharygos adjusted his sleeping position. As he did so, half-asleep, he recognized Riona's presence closer by. He usually would have greeted her but he was far too tired to properly speak. His mind wandered and he slipped back into dreams.

..::..

"Of course," Ryan replied with a smile. Nothing could harm Gaiamat or Tasarin. They both seemed so invincible to him. Maybe it was because of their incredible scaly armor, or vicious weapons. None of which humans had. He thought about how pathetic humans were compared to other animals.

Argh, he was getting distracted again! He turned his head to the side quickly to pay better attention. Cedare had stopped gazing up at the sky and had moved so that her back was to him. The tip of her delicate wing was just by his foot.

"Don't worry, we'll be up and out of here in no time," he added, trying to cheer her up. She gave him a look.
He just smiled back.

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Denna took a seat on the ground and rested back on her elbows, looking up at the sky. She let a light smile touch her lips as she watched through the hole the plants made. "We should all try to get some rest i think, so that when the dragons do return we will be well rested and ready to go. Especially if there is a chance we might be discovered." She shook her head and laid in the grass, resting her arms on her stomach.

She turned her eyes on Cedare. She wanted to help more but she wasn't sure she knew how to at this point. It seemed to be mostly emotional pain now and that wasn't anything she was good at handling. Instead she returned to looking at the sky, wondering if she could spot any the star groups her father had told her about.