What a Twist
Sep 15th, 2013
- Radical changes are always harsh. Just as you need to slow down before a curve, rushing through turning points can cripple your development as a person. Unfortunately, however, we hardly ever get to know when life is going to make a sharp turn, so these can get pretty violent.
- Francis was a humble but competent knight. Despite his above-average performance in combat, he never really sought glory or fame, choosing instead to just spend his money wisely and live a quiet life with his loving wife outside the battlefield.
- That is until, in a certain stormy evening, a large red dragon flew over his house. Telling his wife to say inside at all costs, he put on his trusty armor, grabbed his incredibly large sword with a delicate but menacing dragon engraving, and left to see if the dragon had any ill intent. Noticing the knight, the dragon took a fierce dive, falling faster than the countless raindrops around its massive reptilian body. Momentarily terrified, the knight readied himself for a close dodge, but much to his surprise, the dragon instead halted its dive and peacefully landed right in front of him. Towering a few meters above the man amidst the fierce storm and thunder, it then said:
- “Vyeran, this has gone on for too long, it is time for you to return.”
- The knight was confused.
- “What are you talking about, beast? I know no Vyeran.”
- Visibly upset, the dragon slowly walked closer.
- “Quit your foolery, Vyeran. Drop your façade and come with me at once.”
- “I’m afraid you got the wrong knight, dragon.”
- The majestic dragon stood silent for a few moments. It then moved its head uncomfortably close to the knight, who in his stead raised his sword, ready to strike.
- “No, it’s definitely you. I can tell your essence. Do you really not remember?”
- “I have no idea what are you talking about. I’ve never seen you before; dragon slaying just isn’t my thing.”
- An ear-shattering roar knocked Francis back. Still holding his sword, he got up in a hurry and pointed it at the now angered dragon.
- “If you don’t remember, I’ll brute-force it out of you!” The dragon said with fumes coming out of its nostrils as its eyes glowed red. Upon meeting eyes with the dragon, the man was completely paralyzed. The last thing he saw was the dragon opening its gargantuan maw to breathe hellfire unto him.
- He woke up in his bedroom, and the first thing he saw was his wife standing up right next to him with an extremely worried expression on her usually gorgeous despite time-worn face. Upon noticing that he had awoken, she failed to hold back tears.
- “I thought you’d never wake up…” She said between quiet sobs.
- “What happened? How long have I been sleeping?”
- “A week.”
- “A WEEK!?”
- She shuddered at the unexpected ferocity of his words. Even he was surprised by it as it knocked a few decorations out of the walls.
- “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to shout.” He quickly apologized.
- “It’s ok.” She meekly reassured, before looking him dead in the eyes and continuing “I don’t know what happened, you went outside and then I heard screaming and then I found you unconscious on the ground.”
- “What about the dragon, what did he do to me?” He said, about to panic.
- “I don’t know; I didn’t see any dragon.”
- Francis let out a sigh and clutched his head. What the hell was that and why do I feel so weird he thought. Moving to a sitting position, he looked at his own hands. His skin felt terribly dry, and his nails were sharp and black.
- Surprised, he showed that to his wife. She clearly faked her worried surprise. Realizing she had probably already seen it, he didn’t inquire further. An incredible emptiness suddenly struck him. Clutching his stomach, he complained.
- “I’m starving!”
- “I’ll get you something.” His wife said, before leaving the room.
- Alone once again, the man removed his bed sheet and looked at his own body. The entirety of his skin was unusually dry, with noticeable scale-like cracks around some of his joints. Getting up from his bed, he hurried over to the large mirror in his room and looked at himself.
- What Francis saw was a large man with scales slowly forming all over his body and soulless reptilian eyes; a large man who also happened to be him at the moment.
- In that moment, a distant memory crossed his mind. A memory that wasn’t his own, a memory he was never supposed to remember. It felt like a punch to the gut. Time stood still for that single decisive moment.
- Large, leathery wings burst out from his back. The man screamed in pain and surprise. More distant memories invaded his head; memories of times that shouldn’t have been. Hearing his unexpected screaming, his wife rushed inside, gasping in horror as she saw her husband slowly contorting and morphing into a monstrosity.
- “What… happened to me, REGINA?” The man struggled to say in changing vocal chords, his voice becoming deeper as his neck thickened and extended.
- “I don’t know!” The woman said, loudly crying.
- He remembered several things he would have never done. He remembered pillaging villages with fellow dragons. He remembered keeping a hoard that was his pride and joy. He remembered all the time he spent together with a certain red dragon. Shiny bronze scales now covered most of his body. Draconic energy was taking hold of his entire being, and he was struggling to hold it inside.
- Until one single memory completely broke his resistance. The day he departed. The day that dragons were outlawed and he decided to temporarily disguise as a human. As that memory rushed it, the man closed his eyes and let out a crazed roar. In that moment, he felt almost ethereal as the draconic energy he so fiercely held back now freely coursed through his veins and reshaped his very being to a more fitting shape. Relaxing, he simply got down in all fours and let the transformation flow.
- Finally opening his eyes again, he found himself in the ruins of his own house. Now in the mighty body of a dragon, he checked his own body and took a few seconds to try out the new sensitivity of his sense.
- His wife was physically unhurt, thankfully, but he could tell by the look on her face that she would not forget the horrifying sight of her loved one turning into a monster anytime soon. He now remembered that he was, in fact, Vyeran. A long time ago, dragons pillaged and plundered to their hearts’ content, but soon enough humanity devised several ways to easily dispatch them, so many of them went into hiding, most disguising themselves as humans to lay low and earn their money truthfully. Unfortunately, little did they know, but spending too much time away from your hoard in human form can lead you to go mad and completely forget you are a dragon.
- “So he turned you into a dragon?” Regina said in a monotone.
- “No, my love, he just reminded me that I’m a dragon.”
- “So I married a dragon all along?”
- Vyeran was not sure how to tell her that.
- “Yes honey, you did.”
- Much to his surprise, the woman was somewhat pleased by that revelation.
- “Well, that’s pretty nice. You could have told me earlier, love.”
- “I… I didn’t actually remember.”
- “But how do you just FORGET you’re a dragon?”
- “It’s complicated, ok?”
- The dragon was unsure how to proceed. In one hand, nothing was stopping him from continuing his life as a knight. In fact, dragon knights were all the rage. But then again, the invitation from Bjerk, his red scaled friend, implied that perhaps they required him for something. Apologizing for the house and kissing his wife goodbye, he flew again for the first time in hundreds of years, heading towards his friend’s lair.
- The freedom of flying through the sky was even more exciting than he previously remembered. After several minutes of graciously flying through the sky, he reached his friend’s lair. Bjerk was already waiting for him.
- “So you’ve finally come to your senses.” It said as it saw the bronze dragon coming, with its mouth full of sheep.
- “I’m most grateful that you’ve helped me remember my true self, Bjerk, but what do you need me for?” The bronze replied, before noticing the many delicious sheep that his friend had just recently captured. “May I?”
- “Be my guest. And I didn’t need you for anything, my dear friend. It just pained me to see you living the disgusting, tasteless life of a puny human, unaware of your real worth.”
- Vyeran was slightly taken aback. He was feeling better than ever, but would it be worth it to leave his life behind? With unexpected inspiration, he decided the answer was no.
- “Disgusting? Tasteless? You don’t know what you’re talking about, my friend. Human lives are full of joy and pain. But of course you wouldn’t know.” He replied, gnawing on a poor sheep.
- “The daily life of a dragon is still certainly better!”
- “You mean sleeping, eating, getting money and not doing anything meaningful ever? That’s exactly what humans do.”
- “Silence! It is now clear to me that you are beyond saving.”
- “Hey now, just don’t be so delusional. I’m grateful that you’ve brought me back in the game and being a dragon is… refreshing, but I’m definitely not leaving my life behind. I have a loving wife and a kingdom to protect.”
- “What about your hoard? You’ll just go crazy again if you neglect it!”
- “Why would I neglect it? What’s to stop me from still being a dragon?”
- “Fine. Love your silly human fantasy. You disgust me.”
- “Love you too.”
- Vyeran left, taking at least four sheep with it. And from that day onwards, he lived on as both a dragon and a human. Finding a lair fitting for his wife, he once again raised a hoard through his hard work as an official dragon knight. His wife was never quite the same again, and he occasionally still felt the urge to give up on his human life completely, but in the end of the day, he was still getting the best of both worlds.
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