How To Raise Your Dragon Part 4

All great things come with a cost.


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Greetings and salutations everyone. As you might have guessed, it’s time to dive back into the continuing saga of Onyxia, the black dragon. When we last left off, I had basically antagonized a very powerful merchant by stealing three of his dragon eggs and adopting them as my own. Nearly two weeks had passed since then, and with the hatching due to occur almost any day now, I decided to devote most of my time to learn as much as I could about brass dragons. I’ll admit, after raising Onyxia, I felt like I could handle almost anything at this point, for surely no brass dragon could be as difficult as she was.

Then again, this time around I’d be forced to try and raise three dragons at once.

Thankfully though, after doing a bit of research into their nature, I discovered that brass dragons were actually very sociable (not to mention insanely smart). Even when compared to other goodly dragons, brass dragons were often regarded as the friendliest of their kin. They loved to read books and listen to stories, and they were also very eager to offer aid to others. This was all comforting news of course, but if experience had taught me anything, I knew that my DM wouldn’t it make things this easy.

When the big day finally came, Onyxia and I were waiting in the barn with eager anticipation, and as the first baby dragon crawled out it’s egg, I could already feel myself smiling with excitement.

“Hello little one, and welcome to the world,” I whispered out softly.

The newborn dragon regarded with a curious expression, but before it could say anything, it slowly turned its attention over to Onyxia. Now, keep in mind that even at birth, a brass dragon is basically as smart as a fully grown human, and given the size and appearance of Onyxia (with her jet-black scales and glowing red eyes), it didn’t surprise me that the baby dragon flinched away at the sight of her. However, what did surprise was my daughter’s response, as she slowly leaned down to appear a bit smaller before speaking to the newborn in a calm and welcoming voice.

“Do not be frightened,” she said in draconic. “My name is Onyxia, and you are my little brother.”

At that point, my DM informed me that I needed to roll a diplomacy check for both myself and Onxyia to convince the baby dragon that we were in fact family. I ended rolling slightly above average, but as I soon learned, the brass dragon really didn’t need very much convincing.

“Sissy!” it squealed, before running up to Onxyia and tackling her with a hug.

I’ll admit, I didn’t expect that kind of reaction (and I’m pretty sure Onxyia didn’t either), but fortunately my daughter didn’t seem to mind.

A few minutes later, the other two eggs also hatched as well, and after making the appropriate diplomacy checks to convince them that we were family, I now I had a brand-new daughter along with two healthy sons. In the end, I decided to stick with the Warcraft theme for names, and promptly dubbed my children Arthas, Valeera, and Nefarian (to which they immediately responded by tackling me with hugs and showering me with questions).

“What’s your name?” Arthas asked.

“How old is Onyxia?” Valeera questioned.

“Tell us a story!” Nefarian insisted.

Apparently, brass dragons really are chatty little critters.

I spent the rest of the day with my children teaching them about the farm and answering their questions (which mostly just pertained to myself and Onyxia). I’ll admit, I was relieved to see that all of them were getting along nicely, for I had initially been afraid that the newborns wouldn’t respond well to the presence of a black dragon. As it happens, the three of them simply loved ‘big sister Onyxia’, as they wasted no time in asking her to play and wrestle with them. Onyxia seemed reluctant at first, but after a few minutes of begging and pleading, my daughter finally relented.

Soon enough, the three brass dragons began taking turns riding on Onyxia’s back as she flew them around her lair (their own wings weren’t strong enough to let them fly on their own just yet). As for me, I stepped back and watched the scene with a smile on my face, for I knew that this type of interaction would be very good for Onxyia (especially since, up until this point, she had pretty much kept to herself and didn’t have any friends).

Now, at long last, that would all finally change.

Over the next few weeks, Onyxia took it upon herself to escort her siblings around the farm and introduce them to my staff (which was again another shocker since Onyxia typically made it a priority to avoid other people as much as possible). As you might imagine, the newborns truly loved their new home and immediately began asking a thousand questions about the animals. Fortunately, brass dragons were smart enough to speak both common and draconic at birth, so it didn’t take them long to make friends among my staff. In addition, as soon as they were able to fly, Onyxia wasted no time in taking her siblings out hunting with her.

While all this was happening, I decided to focus my efforts on constructing three new barns for my little brass dragons, for I knew that they’d each eventually need a lair to call their own. I figured that until they were ready, they could stay in Onxyia’s lair for at least a few more months, and I was certain that Onyxia wouldn’t have a problem with this either.

Now, at some point around this time, I decided to pay a late visit to Onyxia’s lair during the night, for I wanted to surprise the newborns with a collection of rare tomes that I had recently managed to acquire. You see, while brass dragons did enjoy collecting treasure for their hoard, the items that they valued most were old books and magical scrolls. Therefore, I figured that giving them each a storybook would be the perfect way to start off their collection.

However, as I started to make my way across the field, I suddenly heard an inhuman roar coming from the barn. A few moments later, the door abruptly flung open and a man dressed in a black cloak could be seen running out of the barn at a swift and frantic pace.

And in his left hand, he held a bloody dagger.

“No,” I whispered, as my heart froze in fear, yet before I could even react, Onyxia suddenly emerged from the barn and unfurled her massive wings, taking to the air with a loud and fearsome roar.

In the darkness of the night, with her jet-black scales and glowing red eyes, she looked like a mighty demon straight out of a nightmare, as the man with the dagger promptly cried out in terror before picking up his pace and sprinting for his life.

He never had a chance.

In an instant, Onxyia pounced upon him and tore out this throat before driving him into the ground and spraying acid into his face. By this point, I had already cast ‘Haste’ upon myself and started running over to her, but by the time I finally arrived, the man was already dead.

And by dead, I mean that Onyxia basically shredded him into a wet sticky paste.

“What happened?” I asked immediately, as Onxyia swiftly turned to me with her furious crimson eyes.

“Intruders!” she snarled hotly, before her expression immediately switched to one of concern as she quickly shifted her gaze back towards the barn. “Nefarian. He is hurt.”

My feet were already moving in the direction of the barn, as Onyxia promptly followed close at my heels. When I stepped inside, I could already see Arthas and Valeera huddled in a corner and shivering in fear, and there…perhaps no more than a few feet away from them, was the body of Nefarian…my youngest son….lying on the ground in a pool of his own blood.

“Papa…please,” Arthas called out, as Valeera cuddled up next to him and continued to shake in fear. “Help him.”

I didn’t waste a second as I rushed over to my fallen son and pulled out a flask of holy water. As a summoner, I didn’t really have access to a lot of healing magic, but as luck would have it, Celestial Healing was a spell that I just so happened to know (and as it turned out, it was probably the only reason that I was able to save Nefarian’s life).

As I watch the magic take effect, the wound across Nefarian’s shoulder slowly began to close, and after a few more seconds of breathless waiting, my little boy opened his eyes and let out a gentle groan.

“P-papa…” he said, to which I immediately scooped him up and held him close to my chest.

“Ssshhh…it’s okay now. I promise that you’re safe,” I said, as Arthas and Valeera quickly climbed into my lap to cuddle with their brother.

With my children now safe, I turned my attention back to Onxyia, who was currently sniffing the air while glancing around the room.

“There might be more of them,” I suggested, which instantly caused Onyxia to let out a hiss of rage.

“Then they will die!”

Thankfully though, after alerting my staff and organizing a search party, we weren’t able to find anymore intruders. However, over the next few weeks, a series of tragic events began to befall my farm. Animals would turn up missing or dead, while others were mysteriously poisoned or infected with a disease. In response, I quickly hired a security team to help patrol my ranch, but by the end of the first month, I ended up losing over half of the animals that I had on the farm.

To make matters worse, I soon discovered that most of my regular clients were now refusing to do business with me, and the merchants were no longer coming out to visit me on the ranch. Needless to say, it didn’t take a genius to realize who was behind all this mess, and while I wish I could say that I got my revenge, this sadly isn’t the case.

My ranch was never able to recover after that, for while we still managed to bring in a slowly and steady profit, we would never be the booming business that we had previously been in the past. In all fairness though, I really didn’t mind, for I knew that this was price that needed to be paid in order to give my children the life that they deserved.

And, as far as I was concerned, that was the only thing that ever really mattered.


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