Chronicles of Draezoln

Tales of the world of Draezoln

Monthly Archives: May 2012

Chapter 18-3

The creature did something with its face. Zakhin’Dakh looked at it curiously. After a moment, it made some more noises.

“You lived here long?”

Again the griffon understood the meaning of the sounds, but he had no idea how to respond to the question. So he just looked at the weird creature, a bit confused.

“Nod your head like this,” the creature moved its head up and down, “To say yes. And shake your head like this,” it moved its head from side to side, “To say no.”

It took Zakhin’Dakh a moment to figure out what the thing was saying, and then a moment more to figure out what it wanted. Then he moved his head up and down quickly, then realized he wasn’t quite sure that was right, so he stopped and screeched a bit uncertainly at the creature standing in front of him.

“So yes, you have lived here a while,” it said, again doing something with its face.

Well, it seemed like the moving-head-up-and-down thing was right, so Zakhin’Dakh did it again with more enthusiasm this time, screeching to emphasize his increased assurance.

The creature made some noises again. “Well, were you this big when you got here?”

He thought the question over for a bit, then shook his head with a negative screech.

“Hm…” The creature was quiet for a moment. Zakhin’Dakh looked it over again. It really was a funny-looking thing. It was scaly like a lizard, but stood on two feet like those big things he’d seen before. It had wings, but didn’t use them, which seemed weird.

“Wondering what I am?” It asked.

Zakhin’Dakh moved his head up and down—a nod, it had called the motion—and screeched happily that it had asked for him.

“’m a half-dragon. Father was a bronze dragon, mother was a human.”

Zakhin’Dakh screeched uncertainly, a bit confused. He’d seen a dragon once, he thought, a long way away. Some big winged thing. A human, though… he oddly had some image of what a human was, even though he’d never seen one as far as he knew.

The creature… the half-dragon made a series of noises. Zakhin’Dakh looked at it, a bit more confused. “t’d take a while t’ explain,” it said.

The big griffon screeched sadly. That sounded like he wasn’t going to explain. Which was sad, because he wanted to know. Then the half-dragon spoke again.

“Want t’ know what I was doing?”

Brought out of his sadness, Zakhin’Dakh nodded and screeched excitedly, taking a step toward the half-dragon.

“Was just looking at your tracks.”

That didn’t really mean much of anything to him. He had some vague idea from somewhere—probably wherever he could understand the sounds from—that tracks had something to do with marking the ground when you walked, but he still didn’t really understand what ‘looking at tracks’ meant.

The half-dragon spoke again. “This ‘s going t’ take a while…”

******

So now you know what Zakhin’Dakh was thinking when he met Almonihah. I’ll be going into a bit more depth about their first couple of months together than in the previous chapter. Then we’ll continue on with what happens when they leave this valley.

Chapter 18-2

It was a deer… or at least it looked like a deer. The odd thing about it was that it was nearly as big as he was. As far as Zakhin’Dakh knew, that was a very unusual characteristic in deer. Of course, that meant it was probably too big for him to hunt, which was unfortunate. It seemed like something he should investigate, though, and so he started looking around the area more closely.

All the animals he found seemed to be similarly giant compared to their normal size, which meant that a rabbit or two was just about right for him. Zakhin’Dakh rather happily verified this fact. His belly full, he explored more, finding a couple streams and more signs of giant animals, including some terrestrial predators—but he saw no sign of aerial predators of his size, much less bigger. And so he started searching for a good nesting site.

He found a good-sized cave in a cliff not far from one of the streams that seemed just about right. It even had a nice ledge for launching off of and landing on. And so he decided to settle in and make it his territory.

Hunting was rather… difficult at first, as he had to go for different kinds of animals than he was used to, but Zakhin’Dakh was a fairly clever griffon, so he adapted. After a while he started really feeling at home, and slowly, to his delight, he found himself growing to match the size of the other inhabitants of the valley.

Zakhin’Dakh was quite happy in the valley. He enjoyed being big, even though everything else was big, too. Sometimes he’d think a bit gleefully about meeting one of those big two-legged things again, but for the most part, he was content living in the valley, feasting on giant prey. The only thing that disturbed his contentment was a nagging curiosity about what the two-legged things were doing and how they were heading toward his lair. And maybe just a bit of general curiosity, too.

That curiosity was awakened full force one day when he saw a two-legged thing in the valley. Even considering his now much greater size, the two-legged thing seemed smaller than the other ones, and it was all bronze-colored, while the bigger ones had been whitish-bluish. Not only that, but this one had wings. He seemed to be looking at the ground the way the others sometimes had before, though. Zakhin’Dakh stood up and got ready to take off when it looked up at him. For some reason, he just looked back at it. Then it started walking toward him. Curious, Zakhin’Dakh settled back down to watch.

It took the winged two-legged thing quite a while to get to Zakhin’Dakh’s ledge. Even when it got to the cliff, it didn’t use its wings, but climbed up, instead. Zakhin’Dakh thought that was really weird, but it seemed like a weird kind of thing, so maybe that made sense. Finally, it reached the top and looked at him.

“You’re pretty big,” it said, and Zakhin’Dakh was surprised to find he knew exactly what the weird sounds it was making meant. He screeched an enthusiastic agreement.

********

So, I felt rather bad about how… rushed chapter 17 was. So I’m glad we’ll have the opportunity to see much of it from Zakhin’Dakh’s eyes. It’ll be fun to see the difference between his and Almonihah’s viewpoints, too, so I’m looking forward to writing the rest of this chapter.

Chapter 18-1

Chapter 18: Griffon

Zakhin’Dakh hatched the middle of five siblings—three males, two females. He wasn’t the biggest and strongest nor the smallest and weakest of his siblings, but he was probably the most curious. He was the first to have to be carried back to the nest after wandering near the entrance of the cave his parents were nesting in, and the first to try to fly. The first to succeed, as well, though that took a bit more work. 

 

In time, of course, it was time for him to leave the nest for good, and he flew off away from his parents’ territory, as well as the directions his siblings were going. He flew for a while until he found a good place that didn’t seem to be claimed by any other griffons. He found a good place to nest and started to settle in. 

 

Game was fairly scarce that winter, and Zakhin’Dakh had to fly further afield to find something to eat. He wasn’t the only one, however—he noticed a few tall things he’d never seen before in the distance. They looked kind of funny since they walked on only two legs, but they looked pretty big, so he didn’t get too close to them. 

 

He did, however, see them hunting some of the same deer he had wanted to eat. That was a problem, but he just had to look elsewhere. They noticed him hunting, however, and he started seeing them more frequently. A group of them was slowly making its way in the direction of his nest. They would stop every now and then and look at things on the ground, then keep moving. Zakhin’Dakh didn’t really know what they were doing, but the way they kept getting closer to his nest made him nervous.

 

When the group was only a few miles away from his nest, Zakhin’Dakh decided something needed to be done. Being a territorial griffon, he thought it would be good to fly down and drive them out of his territory. So he flew over and dove at them, shriek-roaring a challenge at the intruders. Then one of them threw something at him. He didn’t want to get hit by it, so he dodged to the side. It nicked his back leg just enough to draw blood. The others started throwing things, too, and after a little bit, he decided it was best to fly away instead.

 

He started back toward his nest, but the thought occurred to him that they might be headed there with their sharp things. A little more debate brought him to the decision that it was time to find a new territory. And so he flew away.

 

Zakhin’Dakh flew for a long time, stopping only when he needed to eat, drink, rest, or sleep. He didn’t really keep track of where he was going, except it was into more mountainous areas. Eventually he flew up and over a ridge and saw a valley below him. Deciding it was time for a meal, he descended into the valley to see what he could find. 

 

He could hardly believe the first thing he saw.

 

*******

 

Finally, Zakhin’Dakh gets his own chapter! Garkhen has to wait still, but he’s much more patient. 

 

He doesn’t have very clear recollections of the earlier parts of his life, given that he wasn’t that unusual of a griffon in terms of mental capacity or size back then, and it shows in the detail (or rather, the lack thereof) of this section.