Prologue

Lisbeth was dreaming of flying, but she knew she was dreaming. She knew that the clouds wouldn’t feel soft and that the mountains that peeked up through them wouldn’t be covered in luscious green meadows. But she had crafted her dream this way, so they were.

Eventually, Lisbeth got bored of swooping through the clouds and leaping from mountaintop to mountaintop, so she settled in the meadow. Every mountain had a meadow, the same meadow. The meadow was filled with wildflowers ranging across the entire spectrum of color, and some colors that didn’t even exist. But that didn’t matter here because she was dreaming.

She decided to make a crown of flowers with every single one a different shade, impossible to tell where one color began, and another ended. She had to start with three flowers, which were all in the reds and started braiding their stems together. It took a while, but they wouldn’t dare fall apart on her.

When she was done Lisbeth idly spun it around her index finger deciding what to do with it, eventually she decided to leave it in her sister’s dream. Lisbeth knew her sister always liked it when she visited. She threw the crown up in the air one more time before stepping out of the dream, or that was the plan but the man caught the crown before it reached her outstretched hands.

The man was not a dream, and he was immense. He stood in the field on top of the mountain and was looking Lisbeth in the eye, but he was massive. Larger than the mountains and taller than the clouds. It didn’t make sense, dream logic.

“It’s rude to enter a dream unannounced, who are you?”

It wasn’t just rude it was impossible. This was her dream, in her head. No one could violate that, but this man could. He couldn’t just violate it, he could warp it, warp the space around himself allowing him to be so immense.

The man laughed, it wasn’t the laugh of a human, it was the laugh of the wind flowing through the wildflowers, it sounded just like her daddy.

“My apologies dearest, I’m a dragon.”

At that moment the man was a dragon; he was still immense, and he was still looking Lisbeth in the eye standing before her. He was also a mighty silver dragon curled around her mountain. His head was resting in the field wearing the crown Lisbeth meant for her sister. The crown had turned to silver and gold. It was his now.

As much as Lisbeth was scared by this unwanted intruder, her daddy had taught her well. ‘Always be polite to things that might decide to eat you,’ in or out of a dream, didn’t matter, be polite to dragons. So Lisbeth did her best curtsey grasping the hem of her impossibly frilly yellow dress.

“My name is Lisbeth, would you like some tea?”

The Dragon responded with his name. It wasn’t a name that could be spoken; it was a feeling. It was a shifting of the fabric of the dream that she had woven. Lisbeth knew she would never be able to repeat it, even in her own dreams, but she would never forget. The name was carved into her soul, and he would forever be bound to her just as she would be forever bound to him. Immortals didn’t tell humans their true names. The dragon didn’t seem to care about what was and wasn’t done. As he sat down in the gazebo to accept her tea and hospitality. She hadn’t put the gazebo there.

Lisbeth was unsure what to do next, she knew to always offer hospitality to welcome guests. The man wasn’t particularly welcome, but he was a dragon, and that trumped just how unwelcome he was. What were you suppose to say to a dragon anyway, especially one so rude as to enter a dream unannounced. So for a time they sat in silence, drinking their tea, only Lisbeth had hot chocolate; she didn’t much like tea. Finally the man spoke, his voice rushing through the wildflowers and dancing among the clouds.

“Would you like to be an angel?”

Lisbeth’s daddy had taught her about immortals and offers as well. ‘An immortal will offer you the world and ask nothing in return. They will do it too, but it will be a world of ashes. Always remember they only do it because they get bored.’ A dragon’s word could be trusted to be true and honest without any attempts to mislead, but only their word.

“What would I do as an angel?”

“You would grow up if you wish, you could fall in love, but that’s really not up to you, you would learn what makes this world ugly, you would learn what make this world beautiful. Ultimately you would watch the world spin, you would watch it burn, watch it regrow, and you would never be alone again.”

As the dragon spoke, the dream shifted. Lisbeth aged, grew old, and died, only to return to her young body. The wildflowers grew tall and out of control, and then they burned. From their ashes grew more flowers and different flowers. The new flowers were alien to the original field, but from a distance no one would be able to tell the difference. Throughout it all the man sat there, silent and immutable.

It wasn’t just the dream that he changed; it was her as well. She couldn’t see them, but she could feel them. The wings at her back. They were large, larger than she was, but somehow proportional, and soft. Her wings were impossibly soft; she wanted nothing more than to spread them and fly. They were different than a dream, they felt real like they were a part of her.

“Why would you make me an angel?”

“Because this world is stagnant, it’s trapped in it’s patterns and will stay this way for generations. It needs to change because change is growth, change is interesting.”

“That sounds like fun. What’s the catch?”

“The thing about angels is that they always have a God.” The man said with a reptilian grin.
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2 comments

  1. “she knew to always offer hospitality to welcome guest.”

    Missing an ‘a’ either before or after ‘welcome’, depending on how you want to parse the sentence, I think.

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