“Tell me everything,” Simon grated out.

The guards finally stopped tripping over their boots, formed a rank, and after much shouting of ‘get a backbone’, spit out the story of Beryl burning the castle down.

”’Twas a complete inferno, yer Highness,” Earl said, his face blackened with soot.

Simon sat down on his throne, one hand stroking his beard thoughtfully.

And suddenly, he had an epiphany, a beam of light – he would be rid of the pest once and for all.

That way, Ylana would stop her fretting; who could fret over a dead creature? And, if he succeeded in killing Beryl, he would rid his kingdom of another dragon.

But would that not anger the rest of her kin? Simon thought, his face contorted with concentration.

Finally, he made his decision.



“Who was that warrior you spoke of? Conan?”

“No, sire, it was Cael. What of him?”

“Tell me his occupation again, Sloan.”

The guard cleared his throat. “He’s a dragonslayer, sire.”

Simon smiled twistedly, scaring the guards. “Perfect.”

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