Dragon Mage

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Chapter 4 - The Mithril Dragon

Sara stood facing the Red Mage. She dearly wished she had been able to see Yadoshuri one more time. Melnasins gave her a mocking smile. “My prey awaits the outcome of this battle it seems.”

Sara didn’t take her eyes off the man across from her when she said, “Orlaithe, get out of here while you still can.”

“We cannot leave you here alone to die,” Orlaithe replied.

“Orlaithe, please…”

“How noble,” the Red Mage said as he touched the tips of his index fingers and thumbs together. A bolt of lightning as thick as his arm shot across the room at Sara.

Caught off guard, Sara had no time to raise a shield. She lunged to her left, but she wasn’t fast enough. The blast hit her right shoulder, throwing her against the invisible barrier of the dueling circle. She crumpled to the floor, unable to move, barely able to breathe, the pain unbearable. She distantly heard Orlaithe shouting, “Sara, get up!”

Melnasins laughed. “I’ll give your regards to Yadoshuri, right before I kill him.”

Yadoshuri. Sara focused on the Sage. He said that the Red Mage knew nothing of her work, which meant he would have no defense against it. She pushed herself up with her left arm and willed her right arm to move. The spell that had consumed her thoughts for months repeated itself over and over in her mind. With all the breath she had left, she called the power of air and fire together and released it with a shout.

With a roar, the fiery explosion slammed into the Red Mage. For a brief instant he was pinned against the barrier. Then his body flew apart and was incinerated. The magic circle dissolved, which allowed the blast to continue outward. It blew out the back wall of the ballroom and all the way up through the second and third floors of the castle.

Sara heard Orlaithe shout again, but she could no longer move. She had given every bit of energy she had left to the spell. She closed her eyes. An image of Yadoshuri’s face arose in her mind and she felt a stab of regret. Huge chunks of stone were falling all around her. Soon one would fall on her. She didn’t have the strength to put up a shield to protect herself. How ironic that she should survive a battle with the Red Mage only to be killed by her own spell.

She heard Orlaithe call out her name then felt a surge of magical energy surround her. She opened her eyes to find Orlaithe and Laisrean seated beside her on the floor. “Orlaithe,” she murmured, “I told you to go.”

Orlaithe put her hand over Sara’s. “Do you think we could leave you here to die after what you have done for us?”

Part of the ceiling above them caved in. Orlaithe’s shield was battered by large stones and several pieces of heavy furniture. There was a pause in the falling debris and then more stones began falling, thick and fast. Sara could feel the shield weakening. “Shield,” was all she could whisper.

“I know,” Orlaithe replied, her voice strained. She began murmuring softly, something that to Sara sounded like a prayer. She wondered who the dragon would be praying to, then she remembered that dragons had a god of magic. Sara smiled weakly. She wished she had a god of magic to whom she could pray. She closed her eyes again. The pain was overtaking her. The sounds around her were becoming muffled. Through the haze of agony, she felt an immense surge of magical energy. In the back of her mind she felt a sense of wonder that the dragon’s god would respond so quickly. Then all was dark and silent.


Strong arms lifted her up. A familiar deep voice softly called her name. The pain vanished. She opened her eyes to see Yadoshuri’s face. She reached up and touched his cheek. “Am I dead?” she asked.

“No beloved,” he replied with a smile. “You are very much alive.”

Beloved. She liked the sound of that. For a moment she just closed her eyes and rested her cheek against his chest while he walked. She could hear his heart beating, slow and steady. She felt soft silk beneath her skin and vaguely wondered why he wasn’t wearing his Sage robes. “What are you doing here,” she asked finally.

“I had to be sure you were safe,” he replied.

“But, how…”

“Before I answer that,” Yadoshuri said, “I think Orlaithe and Laisrean have something they would like to say to you.” He set her down onto her feet, still holding her close. The silk she had felt under her cheek belonged to a dark blue, knee-length tunic. The tunic had a high collar and buttons that went from the base of his throat to just below his waist. The sleeveless garment covered a long-sleeved, white silk shirt and a pair of black pants that also appeared to be made of silk. Around his neck he wore a large sapphire amulet set in silver, with that familiar rune embossed in silver on top of the gem. She turned to see both Orlaithe and Laisrean down on one knee with their heads bowed deeply. Behind them stood the ruins of the Red Mage’s castle. Orlaithe and Laisrean looked up at Yadoshuri, who gestured for them to rise. Laisrean came forward and bowed deeply to Sara. “Nya Savina, we owe a debt we can never repay.”

Sara stared at him. She had never heard that term before. “You don’t owe me anything,” she said, “It was the right thing to do.”

Orlaithe came to stand next her mate. She also bowed deeply and said, “Nya Savina, I ask your pardon.”

Sara was taken aback. “My pardon? For what?”

“I came to you for aid and yet was unwilling to trust you with my blood. For that I am deeply sorry.”

Sara shook her head. “It would have made no difference anyway. Orlaithe please, you don’t owe me an apology.” She frowned and looked up at Yadoshuri. “And what does Nya Savina mean?”

“It is the name my people have given to you,” he replied.

Sara blinked. “Your people? You’re a…?”

Yadoshuri touched his lips to hers and whispered, “Give me one moment more.” He looked over at Orlaithe and Laisrean and said, “You may go.” They both went down on knee again and bowed deeply. Then they stood, took several steps away from each other, transformed into their beautiful golden dragon forms and flew away.

Sara watched them go, then turned back to Yadoshuri. She traced the silver rune on his amulet with her finger and murmured, “Not silver. Mithril.” She took a step back and looked up at him in amazement. “Settiorine Venoblius, the Mithril Dragon. The right hand of Eralon, god of dragons.”

He smiled down at her. “You left out Dragon god of Magic.”

“I suppose I did, didn’t I.” She frowned slightly. “I thought the gods were not permitted to interfere.”

“I did not interfere in your battle with the Red Mage. Orlaithe called upon me to help her save a life.” With a smile he continued, “You called on me as well.”

Sara looked at him in surprise. “I did? When?”

“When you wished you had a god of magic to whom you could pray.”

“Oh,” she replied. She looked away from him. “I don’t understand. Why me?”

He put his fingers under her chin and lifted her face. “You are intelligent, beautiful, courageous, wise, generous, selfless and distressingly impetuous. And did I mention beautiful?”

She began to tremble and her eyes filled with tears. “But you’re a god. I’m just…an ordinary woman.”

“Nothing about you is ordinary,” he said as he brushed a lock of hair from her face. “I have been watching you from the moment you became the White Mage. You have overcome so many obstacles, including resistance from your own order, some of whom thought you unworthy because of your age and others because you are a woman. You have instead brought honor to your order and new life to your craft. And no matter how many demands you have on your time, you still stop what you are doing to help those in need—including wayward dragons.”

Sara blushed and looked down. “It is what must be done. It’s the right thing to do.”

“I know,” he said, “But few in your position feel they must do something about it.”

“If you’ve watched me,” she replied, “then you know I am not a very good companion. I am very devoted to my work—too devoted—to give enough to time to someone who cares about me.”

“Is that what Tavis told you?” The look in her eyes was enough of an answer. He kissed her forehead, her cheeks and lastly her lips. “He could not resign himself to the idea that you had become White Mage over him. Until your arrival, he was the second most powerful Mage in your order. I saw how you suffered when he left you and watched you isolate yourself from everything except your work. I wanted so much to go to you then to comfort you. That was when I realized that I needed to be closer to you.”

She looked up at him with a slight smile. “So you took this form and decided to work in the library.”

“In part, yes,” he replied. “I have always been at the library. I was one of the builders and I am one of its protectors.”

Sara’s jaw dropped. “You are? But Calinus said he didn’t know you. He knows all the Sages, he’s over 800 years old.”

Settiorine chuckled. “He does not know me in this form. I took this form in the hope that you would find it pleasing. I had hoped that you would grow fond of me before I revealed my true nature.”

Sara said nothing for a long while. Finally, she pulled his note out of her pocket and said, “I kept this with me.” She looked into his eyes and said, “The last person I thought about before I fought Melnasins was you. I wished I could have spent just one more day with you. When I thought I was dying, my only regret was leaving you behind.” She paused to blink back tears. Her voice broke a little when she continued. “When I opened my eyes and you were there…”

Sara didn’t get to finish. Settiorine took her in his arms and kissed her deeply. The landscape around them faded and then reformed itself into a richly appointed bedroom. It took a little while for Sara to notice the change in location, but finally she pulled away from him and asked breathlessly, “Where are we?”

He kissed her neck and began undoing the fastenings of her robes. “In the mountains above Ker Deledia,” he answered.

Sara gasped with pleasure. “No one lives above Ker Deledia except…”

“Dragons,” Settiorine said with a feral smile that set her heart racing and her body aching with need. Her robes fell to the floor. Underneath, all she wore was a light shift. He growled with pleasure as he ran his hands over her lightly covered breasts. The shift and the rest of her undergarments soon followed her robes. He kissed a path of fire from her neck, lingering at her breasts until she moaned with desire, then down her belly to her very core. Her knees turned to water and she dug her fingers into his shoulders to prevent herself from falling. He rose and pulled her close, his arousal quite evident.

“This doesn’t seem very fair, you know,” she said softly.

“What?” he asked thickly.

“You’re still dressed,” she replied with a wicked smile.

In the blink of an eye his clothes were gone. He tangled his fingers in her jet-black hair and captured her mouth with his. Step by step he drove her towards the bed, until the backs of her knees hit the mattress. He lifted his head and she saw that his eyes glittered silver in the low light. “Sara I burn for you. I fear this first time may not be as gentle as you would like.”

“Please,” she gasped, “I want this as much as you do. You can be gentle the next time.”

He lifted her up, bore her down onto the bed and entered her in one thrust. Sara’s back arched and she cried out in ecstasy as her climax exploded around her. He drove into her, stoking the fires of her pleasure, bringing her to climax again and again before he finally took his own release.

Settiorine kissed her, a long, lingering kiss and asked, “Are you ready for gentle now?”

Sara looked up at him, her eyes still dark with passion and said, “Next time.”


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