Chapter 4

With great pain she ripped her black dress into shreds, and used the clean cloth to bind her wounds. Such large open wounds could be dangerous if not kept properly, she would likely need to buy or make a poultice for herself. From the leftover scrap of her dress, she made a makeshift pouch to carry the dragon. She then dressed herself in her last pair of men's clothing, braided her unruly hair, and strapped the pouch to her front. She then sat there for a moment, staring at the bloodied handprint on the wood.

She was leaving.

The little dragon slept in a patch of sunlight, the only other source of light other then the entrance.

First, she would get her dog. She did not need anything from the house, anything of importance had already been sold for her fathers medicine months ago. Then, she would go to the town and sell the shards of eggshell for as much as she could. Then, she would buy the supplies she needed till the next town, the medicine and bandages for her wounds being first on her list. Here came the hard part- saying goodbye to Mr. Finch and Elric. She shook her head slowly as she strapped her sword, and then her quiver. She had to adjust placement, it now rested across her buttocks. It was not a great place to put her quiver, it got in the way of her movement, but she could not strap anything to her back right now.

The scooped up the dragon, and it made no protest against her as she placed it inside the pouch. It wiggled a bit inside the cloth as she adjusted the straps her to body. It was tight, cocooning the beast. It would not be able to escape from the pouch, which was ideal. After all, walking around with a baby dragon would be like putting a target on her back. It was sketchy enough selling the shell, but seeing as she was leaving the town soon after, there would be little to no trace of her or the dragon.

Dragon parts tended to sell for a lot. She had heard dragon masters tended to sell scales, often for a hearty price. It was known dragon scales were very durable and could be crafted into many different things. They were even more sought out then Merfolk flesh. So much, that the Dragoon Knights of Nuivia had their armor made of dragon scales, due to their durability and beauty. It was easy to see why they were so sought after.

However, she also heard other rumors. Bad ones, where wild dragons would be hunted and killed for their meat, scales, and innards. It was either for glory, medicine, or cruelty. That was why most dragons ended up herded to the Land of Moon. She placed a hand on her little dragon, who slept so soundly in the pouch. She would protect it, as she would protect her sister, and protect herself. She was strong, and she was going to use that strength.

It was time to go.

The dragon was surprisingly calm in the pouch, she cradled it in her arm as she made her way out, careful not to jostle it around much.

The forest was much like every other morning, but something seemed different. The dew seemed to produce rainbows of color, the air had new smells, and the birds song seemed a bit more melancholic. She blinked, taking it in. Her eyesight seemed to be sharper, and she could see farther around her. Why didn't she notice in the hallow? Perhaps because it was such a small and dark space? The world seemed... A bit more beautiful.

The colors of the moss and leaves were vibrant, and seemed to emit soft sounds, but she could only hear if she really focused. It was like a soft hum, soothing.

A flash of brown fur skittered to a branch far above her, making her blink. She didn't even need to look up to see the squirrel pause, before skittering to another tree. Was this part of being partnered with her dragon? It had to be. But how far did her vision go?

She started to walk towards the farm, testing it. It was really hard to pinpoint exactly where her vision could see, as it seemed to change depending on how hard she concentrated. She could not see directly behind her, but could see fairly far above her and to her sides. It was going to take some getting used to.

She could see the fields where the sheep roamed even before she reached the tree line. From where she was, she could even see her dog laying by the chickens, being a good boy as always.

It was amazing, how far she could see now. She stood at the tree line, taking in the scenery. Before, she was able to make out the shape of the city wall from their farm. But now? She could see the gate clearly, and even the details of the rocks used to form the wall. Heck, she could even make out the forms of the guards standing at the gate, despite the far distance between them.

Her dog spotted her, making a loud happy bark. She flinched, hoping her brother did not hear. Her dog jumped up and started to run towards her, but she kept her eyes on the door.

Her dog stopped, making her look to him. His hackles were raised and his tail between his legs. She bent over, holding her hand out, urging him to come. The dragon was a new scent, he was probably wary. His love for her won as he bounded forward and jumped up on her, his tail going happily as he licked her face. The dragon moved in the pouch, making him quickly back off. He stopped, looking to her then the pouch. He then inched forward, smelling it. He tilted his head, looking to her again.

"This is our new family member, pup." His tail began to wag slowly again, sniffing the bag more. He knew the word family. She always called the other animals family, it was how she taught him to protect the flock. He seemed to understand, pressing his muzzle to the cloth. The little dragon purred, making her dog jump back and excitedly bark. It looked like they would be friends, she was glad.

She looked to the door of the little farm house. It looked like there was no movement from the inside. Perhaps her brother was still sleeping? He often slacked in chores. Why wouldn't he when she took care of the house and farm?

She stood, her dog yipping happily at her feet.

"Goodbye." She said to the place she called home for the past years. Shewas going to miss it. The animals, the smells, the sounds.

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