I couldn’t let the dragon stay, even though all my friends were safe now. Safer. A dragon inna area was bad news. So Cooper’n’me loaded up with stuff an’ went back. We kept eyein’ the sky, in case it was flyin’ over. But we found it still sittin’ onna roof where we’d left it. So we snuck back inna house, hopin’ for some cover while we figured out how to make a dragon go away.
Cooper sat down an’ opened the Monster Cryptology book from Pip. It had a bit bout dragons, so we were lookin’ for ideas (like maybe they didn’t like mistletoe or somethin’).
While he read, I checked my weapons. My sword was sharp, but the dragon was up so high, it probably wouldn’t be much help. Bow an’ arrows would be loads more useful. They were sharp too. Good.
But I wasn’t sure if I could shoot it high enough. I mean, houses are awful tall. Maybe I could climb onna roof, though. I wished I hadda big net or chain or somethin’, someway I could keep it grounded.
While I was thinkin’ bout roofs, Cooper sighed.
“I am not sure whether your weapons will suffice to defeat a dragon. This book seems to suggest that the only weapons that will defeat dragons are magical in nature.”
”Magic?” I echoed. “ I don’t got none. Where do you get a magic weapon?”
He looked down atta book an’ ran a finger along the page. “ You might find one while on a quest to a magic location. Fairies have some. A strong magician can make one, or might have one in his collection. They sound rare.”
I sighed too. “So we don’t gotta chance?”
“Well…perhaps not to kill it. But your weapons should be enough to engage it and perhaps to drive it away for a time.”
Long enough, maybe, to figure out a real fix. That’d have to be good enough for now.
But it also meant I needed to get closer. Lots closer. Rooftop closer. The windows didn’t open big enough for climbin’ out. There wasn’t no attic. I was gonna hafta climb. But carefully. Vale’d taught me a li’l bout climbin’ careful, an’ she’d given me some rope an’ harness an’ that thing you throw up with a rope attached. I forgot it’s name, but I could use it ok. It was easier to throw far cuz it was heavy-ish. Easier’n lobbin’ an arrow up onna roof, at least (weird, how it was hard to throw a light thing very far, but easier to throw somethin’ heavy…but not too heavy).
I fetched the stuff an’ had Cooper help me with alla buckles an’ things. He was right good at gettin’ ‘em tight so I wouldn’t slip. Once I was strapped in, I picked up alla weapons an’ hung ‘em on myself. Fingers crossed I didn’t drop nothin’. Then it was time for goin’ up!
Climbin’ a house sure is tough. There’s sorta handholds, if you count stuff like doortops an’ window ledges an’ all, but then there’s great big flat places too where the only way up was to grab onna rope, plant feet against the wall, an’ walk, hopin’ the rope was caught good on whatever was up top so I wasn’t gonna go fallin’ back down. Cooper was onna ground, watchin’, but I think, if somethin’ had given loose, alla good he woulda done was get hurt too.
Thankfully, the rope held.
After lotsa lotsa pullin’, I grabbed onna roof edge an’ pulled up. An’ then…oh my gumdrops, but it was big!
It didn’t see me or hear me at first, which was good. I dunno how it didn’t hear me. I sure was breathin’ hard, an’ I’m pretty sure my heart was poundin’ loud enough to wake some dead things. But it didn’t seem to notice me. So I pulled one leg up over the roof edge an’ slipped the other up, tryin’ get my feet somewhere stable. Roofs are an awful lot steeper’n’ they look from onna ground. Gettin’ stable was hard! I decided I wanna stay by the roof edge an’ use the bow. Goin’ in with a sword swingin’ sure didn’t seem like a good idea from up here.
Then one of the metal clips used to attach onna rope slipped off. It fell chunk against a shingle an’ dropped down down down to the ground, where dust puffed up round it. Gulp. I didn’t wanna fall that far!
But that was nothin’ compared to what I saw when I looked up.
I went all fumble-fingered, tryin’ get my bow un-slung an’ an arrow outta the quiver. I didn’t wanna look ‘way from the dragon, but I hadda look at the bow cuz the arrow kept slidin’ off. Finally, I got it up tight an’ raised the bow an’ sighted down the arrow…
I dunno what happened. That dragon couldn’t’ve been scared of my one li’l bow, or the arrow I had knocked in place. I was close enough to hit it, sure, but chances were pretty good the arrow wouldn’t go past its scales. An’ I was too shook up to aim for the eye or some other soft spot dragons got.
But maybe this dragon didn’t know that. Maybe this dragon’d had run-ins with people before. Strong people that had magic weapons an’ things. Or maybe it was young an’ scared. Whatever happened afore, it took off when it saw me pointin’ my bow. Let out a big, mighty roar, flapped its huge wings, an’ flew off over the forest. I hadda grab onna roof’s edge so I didn’t go slidin’ off from alla wind it made.
I watched it for a bit, makin’ sure I knew which way it was goin’, then I started climbin’ down.
Onna ground, Cooper helped me take stuff off an’ put it up. Climbin’ a house was hard work. I let him know that the dragon was alive still an’ it’d flown off deeper inna forest. I was pretty sure we had somethin’ more to do bout it too. We hadda follow the dragon.
Cooper took a deep deep breath, picked up the bow an’ quiver an’ book, an’ put on his brave face.
“Okay then. Let’s go track a dragon.”
My brother’s the best.