The Dragon Chain

By charmdfate (

Disclaimers: These are original characters in an original story that belongs solely to me. I dreamed the whole thing, and believe me, if I can get half of it down on paper I think you’re gonna like it. Any resemblance to anyone, living or dead, is purely coincidental. This story will eventually deal with same sex couples, so if this is illegal where you live or it just plain is not your bag, please move on. You may find some bad language, so if it offends you, I apologize.

Chapter 8

"So we're going to your home, huh. What's it like," Rhinn asked with seeming nonchalance? She desperately wanted to know what was going on, but some instinct was telling her that if she pushed the dragon too far Lyra would probably just drop her, literally.

Lyra thought for a moment, trying to decide if there was any harm in telling the human about her home. If she edited a few things…

"Home is a large complex in the mountain you see ahead of us," she projected, waving her head in that direction. "It has several levels, most built into the mountain itself; very hard to describe without seeing it firsthand." This last said a bit loftily.

Rhinn started to get a picture in her mind as Lyra continued to speak.

"At the base of the mountain is a castle made of white stone. In the summer, when the sun is at it's highest, it shines so bright that you dare not look directly at the walls for fear of blindness. In the winter, the snow makes it hard to see where the earth ends and the stone begins……"

Rhinn closed her eyes and focused, not on the voice of the dragon in her head, but on the pictures that seemed to be wrapped around the words. She saw the castle with its glowing walls. Even at night, the smallest bit of moonlight was enough to reflect off the stone, forming a bright aura around the large structure. It looked just like the castles she had seen in books: tall spires rising at odd intervals, thick outer walls with just one entrance, a moat filled with clear water. Flying from the walkways above the walls was a standard. When the wind unfurled the flag, Rhinn could see it had a dark gold field just like the shield she still clutched. However, the dragon in the center of the flag was bright red, and instead of being curled it was rearing up in a rampant position, three feet extended out, being supported by only one leg. Rhinn felt an emotion that was not her own. With a start she realized that Lyra felt great love for someone in the castle, not just affection for the place itself. For a moment, she was a bit jealous, but she shook it off. She had known Lyra for barely two hours and had no right to feel possessive.

"Who's the red dragon," Rhinn heard herself asking? Tact was never her strong point.

Lyra faltered, jostling Rhinn and almost causing her to drop the shield. She knew she had been projecting images, but she hoped that she had not inadvertently sent any emotions. Convincing herself that she had not let anything slip and that Rhinn was just curious about her home she answered.

"That is the standard of King Dagnar." Lyra was very careful to keep her projection neutral, and with no accompanying picture. Still, Rhinn got a vague sense of something huge and red, much larger than Lyra.

Sensing another question she didn't really want to answer, Lyra sent a projection before Rhinn could even formulate words.

"We'll stop soon. Unfortunately we will have to camp for the night, as the only town is near the castle." Lyra projected the word "camp" as though she had just stepped on something cold, wet, and slimy.

Rhinn, who had gone on a few camping trips with her father and had never really learned to enjoy the experience, could sympathize. She peered down at the ground, and saw that they were flying over a large forest. She looked forward and saw that, although they had been flying for at least a few hours, the mountain didn't look any closer. Deciding to let the dragon sidetrack her line of questioning (for now), Rhinn asked how long it would take to get to the castle. The reply startled her.

"At least a 4 days. Home is farther than it looks, and I haven't flown in a very long time. Even now I'm tiring."

Rhinn noticed that Lyra's wing beats had gotten steadily slower and they were losing altitude. Spotting a break in the trees below them, she felt the dragon's muscles shift a second before Lyra tucked her wings close to her body and dropped sharply towards the ground. At the last moment (at least Rhinn thought it was the last moment, she had closed her eyes at the sight of the ground rushing up at them), Lyra unfurled her wings and with a great snapping sound flapped once to break the fall, kicking up a huge cloud of dirt and dried leaves that were strewn across the clearing. At this point, Rhinn fell off, the shield hitting her solidly on the head.

Lyra realized her mistake as soon as she swept her wings out to break her fall. She had overcompensated. It had been centuries since she last flew, and she had been much smaller then, and not carrying a passenger. Setting down heavily, she anxiously scanned the ground for her Kaleran. It took several minutes for the dust to clear, and even then it was hard for her to see where Rhinn had fallen. Finally, a low moan to her left made her swivel around, to see that what she had taken to be a particularly dirty log was really her unconscious companion. Walking quickly to her side, Lyra worked her sharp claws carefully under Rhinn and turned her gently over.

Lyra was fascinated. She had been most attracted to the human's eyes when they bonded, and had not paid a lot of attention to her physical features. But now, with the hypnotic eyes closed, the dragon took the time to study her chosen one. She really was quite beautiful, in a non-dragon sort of way, of course. Her clothing had ripped during her fall; Lyra could now see parts of the human's muscular legs through large holes in her pants. Her shirt had ridden up, so that her well-defined right arm was lying across the bare skin of her hard, flat stomach. The dragon cocked her head as she started intently at Rhinn's face; it was slightly rounded, but the cheekbone she could see was sharp and angular. Her nose, while not being prominent, was not delicate either. It was….strong. That was the only word Lyra could think of to describe it. Rhinn's entire face had a strong, noble look to it. Her hair was a very intense red. Lyra blew a small lick of fire, and decided that the human's hair was the exact color of dragonfire. Half of the human's hair was flung across the right side of her face. Wanting to see the entire face, Lyra tried to hook the end of one of her claws on the hair, but soon realized that to accomplish this she would end up scratching Rhinn. Lyra looked furtively around her, trying to sense if there was anyone in the nearby forest. Not sensing anything larger than a squirrel, she returned her attention to her companion. She felt a burning need to see Rhinn's entire face. She sent a projection to the human, but all she felt was blackness. She glanced around one more time, and then….Changed.

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