Choices Meant For Gods
The Choices Trilogy Book 1
by Sandy Lender
Genre: Epic Fantasy
The dragon on the balcony scene, from chapter 16
Now she sensed someone approach. All her muscles tensed as she watched through the strip of space between the curtain and doorframe. And when a small dragon landed with a click-click of its claws on the stone balcony rail, she put her hand to her mouth to keep from gasping aloud.
It’s a baby dragon!
The thing couldn’t have been four feet tall, sitting there fussing with its oversized wings. It seemed to have difficulty getting the webbing to fold nicely against its sides. In fact, it seemed to have so much difficulty that it lost its balance and nearly fell backward. She could imagine it cursing if it had a voice, by its agitated hop-and-bounce to the balcony floor, which proved more stable.
She watched all of this with fascination, not afraid, but surprised. Dragons are extinct, how is this real? The last sighting was, by the gods, five hundred winters ago.
Its feet reminded her of any reptile, only this creature’s small claws would some day be brutal scythes. The dark scales on the feet blended into rich blue and purple hues with black overtones as she followed their pattern up the muscled legs to the creature’s belly.
This was obviously the part of the body slayers had targeted for centuries. Her own fingernails could pierce this supple-looking skin. Hopefully the skin would toughen with age and darken to match the rest of its body. For now, the tan underbelly would certainly stand out against a night sky, even if the glistening young scales didn’t.
As the creature continued to fuss with its wings, Chariss watched it tuck its elongated face around to scratch its back. It was hard to believe the scales would have nerve endings to feel an itch, much less the scratching meant to relieve the annoyance. It leaned on its right front leg for support as it rubbed its chin against the left wing. And when all the motion, combined with not-properly-folded wings, knocked it off balance, she giggled.
The creature would definitely curse if it had a voice. It was scrambling to regain its footing and lift off from the narrow balcony. Unfortunately, it would have to coordinate itself to hop to the railing before its wingspan would allow it to take flight. Chariss took advantage of its frantic attempts at escape to capture it from behind.
“Hrazon will have my head for this,” she muttered, but stepped onto the stone balcony and scooped up the mass of flailing reptile. It flailed all the more, its weak tail wrapping and slapping the backs of her legs, and emitted a strangled barking sound.
“Hey, be quiet!” she admonished, rearranging her arms to hold its forelegs down against its body. “You’re going to tear a wing if you don’t settle down. And stop making that noise!”
Sandy Lender is a construction magazine editor by day and author of #GirlPower fantasy novels by night, living in Florida to help with sea turtle conservation and parrot rescue. You can follow her author page on Amazon, check her website at SandyLenderInk.com, or subscribe to her newsletter at https://bit.ly/SSReNews.
With a four-year degree in English and thirty-year career in publishing, Sandy’s successes include traditionally and self-published novels, hundreds of magazine articles, multiple short stories in competitive anthologies, a handful of technical writing awards, and a handful of creative writing awards and nominations. Sandy’s been writing stories since she was knee-high to a grasshopper when her great-grandmother shared her odd little tales of squeaky ghost-spiders around an apartment complex in Southern Illinois. The stories have developed to include strong young ladies working with dragons to save worlds from terrible fates, but those pesky spiders still show up from time to time.
There’s always something brewing at Sandy Lender Ink headquarters where some days, you just want the dragon to win.
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