Sixteen years ago today, I set out on a journey to defeat the dragon. I was so young at seventeen. Full of spirit and thirst for adventure, which is how I ended up out here. I found the dragon, but he was nothing like I expected. I have documented him well in my previous entries, so I won’t go into great detail here. You know the idea though. Malik is like an old clumsy man who forgets where his book is when it’s in his hand.
When I found him sixteen years ago, I longed for him to be a bloodthirsty monster, but he was as gentle as could be. I wish I could explain how in the world he gardens and tends to his plants with his dragon claws, but I cannot. It is something one has to see with their own eyes. The species of animals he has here are unlike any. Actually, every plant and animal here are unlike any because they are extinct. But they aren’t. For example, there is a garden of flowers Malik has planted that are the most vibrant shade of purple you have ever seen, and they bloom at night instead of during the day. When the blooms open up, the tiny veins in the thick petals glow like purple starlight.
When I saw this piece of heaven he had created, I fell in love. Most young men fall in love with a woman… but not me. I fell in love with nature no one had ever seen and with animals no one had ever touched. I’ve been here ever since. I have dedicated the last sixteen years of my life to helping the dragon tend to this place. He likes me to tend to the smaller details since he cannot. We work well together. We have a bond I don’t think anything or anyone could come between. So, on this day, my thirty-third birthday, I am content with life and happy in my place.
It hasn’t been four days since I wrote my last entry. Remember that? Where I was happy and content? Well, now something is threatening the safety of everything Malik has built here. A storm is brewing. There is a stream that runs down from the top of the mountain into the hidden valley we are in. Up until now, it has been perfect. A water source for the plants, animals, and for me. But a bad enough storm could turn that stream into something that washes out the entire valley, and I am afraid this storm is such a one. I won’t let everything we have built here be destroyed. I will come up with something.
It took him long enough, but the dragon finally relented and agreed that the only thing we can do is reroute the stream. I worked by myself digging another path until the stubborn thing came to help me. I was drenched by the time Malik came sulking up the mountain. The rain was pouring down, and I was certain I could see the stream getting wider by the second. I worked on damming up the way down the mountain while Malik plowed a path for the stream to go another way. I used anything I could find, branches, rocks, and even wads of leaves and mud from the stream bed. I was afraid it wasn’t going to work. A lot of water was still going down the mountain. I kept stacking and stacking things, but it wouldn’t hold. Finally, Malik came back from digging.
“It’s never going to work, Malik! We are going to lose the valley!” I called desperately over the pounding rain.
Without one word of reply, Malik stalked towards me and my poor attempt at a dam. The rain rolled off of his golden scales and made them shine. He huffed at me, and the steam rose from his flared nostrils. His claws dug into the muddy bank as he made his way into the river in front of my blockade. With a yet another huff, Malik ground his body into the river bed, effectively blocking the water.
We stayed there for the rest of the day and through the night. Malik sheltered me with part of his wing, and we waited out the storm together. The next morning I woke to the delicious smell of wet earth and a once in a lifetime view. It had stopped raining. Malik sat on his hind legs beside me, and we stared. The sun was rising above the mountains, and its rays bathed the valley in sunlight. It touched the top of the trees and the grass and threw beams on Mailk’s plants. Parts were still in shadow due to the slopes and shapes of the mountains, but the parts the light touched…beautiful. Mist surrounded the ground, and the raindrops still fell off leaves and grass. The sunlight danced on the water drops, making the valley look as if it were blanketed in sparkling diamonds. As long as I live, I will never forget that view. And as long as I live I will never stop fighting to protect this valley. From wind, rain, fire, people. Whatever it takes, I will protect this place. My home.
prompt number two! I hope you enjoyed this one. Cassie’s blog goes up Friday, and I will post my next story then so keep and eye out! If you want to read her interpretation of this prompt, click on her name! 😃