“Well I was out eating vegetables.” Druk said as he hiccupped again.
“Vegetables?” Avina was puzzled, it wasn’t like her husband to eat anything but animals he found in the woods. But even then, he would bring home at least a small deer for her.
Druk hiccupped again. “Slim pickins’, my dear.”
“Pity.” She looked over the medicine cabinet once more. “Sorry love, fresh out of the heartburn medicine. You’ll have to go into the town and take some.”
Druk groaned, he hated bothering the villagers. They didn’t like him too much. “Well did you need anything else while I am out?”
“Not now dear, we have some meat stored in the back cave that will last us a while. Unless you stop by old Mrs. Damforth and see if she’ll let me borrow another book?”
“You disintegrated the last one.” Druk walked out of the cave with a smile on his face. Mrs. Damforth wasn’t likely to let Avina borrow another book but he’d still try. Maybe he could talk one of the other townswomen into it.
Druk made it to the town down the mountain, about an hours-worth of walking. He wanted to look ‘normal’ coming into the town, because otherwise it would scare the children if he flew down the mountain. A truth he had found out the hard way a few years ago. Edmund and Karyle never got over that one morning they ran into Druk and had to leave town as soon as they were of age, no one had heard of them since.
Druk sneaked into the sleepy Sunday village and found a house that seemed to have some movement. He tapped on the door with a claw, if he had knocked he would have tore down the door, something he also learned the hard way. He waited a short moment and tapped again. He heard a thud behind the door, which meant the person most likely fainted upon sight of a dragon outside their house and he would have to move on.
He needed to work quickly though, news would spread in the town and he would be ran out by the toughest men there was.
Druk walked a few houses down and tapped lightly again. He waited a moment and was about to tap again when the door opened. Behind it was a small child, about the age of four in a little pink dress. Druk panicked, small children usually ran crying to their mothers.
“Hi.” A tiny squeak came from the little girl. She smiled big.
“Hello, miss. Is mommy or daddy home.” For the first time he felt a sense of relief.
The little girl giggled. “Dragon.”
“Yes, I am.” He smiled back at her.
“They say you big scary. No. You cute.” She giggled again.
Druk smiled, he had never been complimented from a human before. And he thought about it, the last time Avina called him cute was when he was courting her. “My name is Druk. What is your name?”
“Anabelle.” She smiled again and grabbed for his hand.
“No, no Anabelle, I won’t fit in your house!”
She stepped back with a frown. Anabelle stared at Druk,
In a moment a woman showed up at the door. “Anabelle, we told you, Dragon bad!”
“No mommy! Druk nice!”
The mother looked at Druk. “Well you haven’t burnt down my house yet.”
Druk couldn’t help but chuckle. “No, Ma’am. Just in town looking for medicine. Modern times but we still haven’t quite figured out how to do the sort of healing that you humans do.”
“Medicine huh? Why not try a doctor?” She crossed her arms and leaned against the doorway.
“It’s best to try my luck with the people first.” He smiled. “Perhaps do you have heartburn medication Ma’am?”
She stood with a puzzled look.
“In turn I offer services. I can annoy your pesky enemies, or do some heavy lifting, or protect your home. Possibilities are of course limited to what a dragon can do.”
“Fly!” Anabelle smiled and looked at her mother.
“No Anabelle, not safe.”
“Ma’am flying is completely safe, I would guard Miss Anabelle with my life.” The truth was Druk had never given a human a ride, but he had known other dragons to. It couldn’t be so hard.
“You’d give Anabelle a ride for some heartburn medication?” Anabelle’s mother said inquisitively.
“A life time of rides, Ma’am.” Druk was hopeful.
“Okay.” She disappeared into the house and returned with two large bottles of pills. “I can always get more so I’m giving you what we have.”
Druk smiled. “The missus will be so happy I won’t have to come to the village for these any time soon. I do thank you. As for the rides for Anabelle, I know it is getting late so how about I come back tomorrow for her first ride? Do you mind taking her to the edge of the forest so I won’t need to come too close into town?”
“I’d be more than happy to. Say around 10 o’clock.” The mother smiled.
“10 o’clock it is!” Druk took his bottles and began to walk way when he remembered the other thing. “Oh! The missus, Avina loves novels, you mind letting her borrow one?”
“One! I’ve had a whole box I’ve been meaning to take to the library, but I’m sure your wife would love them!”
Not too long and Druk was walking away with a large box of books and the medicine he needed. He smiled and thought what a lovely happenstance that he was able to meet such a generous woman and happy little child. He was over joyed at coming back the next day to take the little girl for a ride. He knew Avina would be proud that he didn’t terrorize anyone this time. As he started his journey home he heard the mother talking to her little Anabelle.
“I never knew dragons could get heartburn! So fascinating, I hope he comes back!”