Family Ties

Every autumn and every spring, the sweeping dragon migrations soar high overhead. Often they pass in the night, so here in our village we light the way, so we may meet old friends again. This is not the typical path for the dragons to take, but some make the journey regardless.

Nineteen years ago, a deadly tempest raged in the mountains to the east, blasting rock from the slopes and trees into ravines. Our village was locked in three days of downpours and cracking thunder, and when we first opened our doors on the bright fourth morning that followed, we found a village in ruins, and some curious visitors. Huddled in the remnants of a coal house we discovered sixteen baby dragons. Cold and afraid, they were completely unable to care for themselves. With no signs of parents in sight, we cared for them ourselves.

Four years later they were old enough to fly, and were able to find their missing flocks. A hatchling I loved dearly, who I had named Auranel, promised me they would return every year, and every year they do.

I asked Auranel once if she found her parents. She looked at me like I was stupid, butted me with her nose and told me, “But you’re right here.”

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