Gretel and Sindri arrived at the dragon’s cave. The babies flew around,
happy to see Gretel. Where is Jago? Is he all right? What has happened? I
sense something’s wrong. Rosenwyn questioned with concern.
Gretel sat on a hollowed out fallen tree so she could look into Rosenwyn’s
eyes as she spoke. She told her of the trouble in Utheria and how Crispin
and Jago rescued her from the river.
Where are Jago and Crispin now?
Gretel said, “Crispin left with Jago to find Quirin and the others. He
wants to help them. We are to take care of the babies.”
think the little ones are hungry. I need to find them something to eat.
Will you stay here with them until I get back? Rosenwyn looked down at the
“Of course we will. You go on and do what you need to do.” Sindri watched
the dragon fly off, leaving Gretel and her with the babies.
“Be careful, Rosenwyn.” Gretel shouted, but the dragon didn’t hear.
Some of the dragons flew around the cave, enjoying the large, open space.
Others curled up and snoozed. Gretel stroked several of them. “I’m going
to look for something we could use as a ball. They love playing ball. Do
you know of anything around here that’s round? “I’m not sure, dear.”
Sindri thought for a moment. “Wait, I know something. Keep going until you
come to a clearing. Head towards the tree where we found the mork eggs, do
you remember where that is?”
“It’s over that way?” Gretel pointed.
“Right you are. There’s a tree that grows
“Fruggles? What are they?”
“Fruggles are a fruit. I’m not fond of them myself, but never mind that.
You can’t miss it. The tree has peach-colored leaves with dark green at
the edges. The fruggles remind me of giant peaches. They’re quite large,
but they don’t have fuzzy skin, but it's as tough as an elephant’s hide!
Oh, the bother I’ve had peeling them! Bring a few back. I’m sure you’ll
find some lying on the ground. The dragons can play for hours with them.
Once they break them open, they can eat them. Jago and Rosenwyn love
fruggles too. They’re the only fruit I know of on this island that have
“I’ll bring back an armful.” Gretel ran off to find the fruggle tree.
While searching for the fruits, she picked up several more emeralds
scattered along her path and put them into her pocket.
Sindri watched the dragons and thought about the events of the last few
days and the new people in her life; her son, Gretel, Crispin, and the
babies. Gordinth lay dead and buried in Luba and her husband was off on a
“I’m back! I found lots of them!” Gretel ran to Sindri and dropped the
fruggles at her feet.
“My goodness! You certainly brought a lot of them. They should have a lot
of fun with these. Let’s see how they like playing ball.” Sindri stood up
and took several fruit with her to the cave. “Come on little ones. Come
and play ball with Gretel and me.” She rolled one of the fruggles into the
cave. It stopped at Tabitha’s feet.
The little green dragon tried to pick the large fruit up, but succeeded
only in rolling it across the cave floor. She started screeching and ran
to it, pushing it with her snout.
“She’s having fun with it,” Gretel said. “Oh look. Talwyn’s joining in. So
is Breok.” During the last few days she’d made a point of learning each
dragon’s name, but surprised herself. “I remember which dragon is which. I
know their names!” She smiled at Sindri.
Soon a dozen of the dragons fought over who got to push the fruggle
around. Sindri tossed another one into the cave and giggled when eleven of
the dragons ran over to the new one to fight over it. “I think we’d better
let them have them all.” She rolled all the fruggles among the dragons.
She and Gretel sat back and watched them having fun with the fruit.
“Aren’t they just adorable.”
“They are kind of cute.” Gretel laughed when one of the fruggles burst
open and pink juice squirted all over Morcum.
He licked his lips and decided he liked fruggle juice. Instead of rolling
it around, he took a bite out of it. Once again, when the others saw him
eating, they started jumping up on down on the fruits, hitting them with
rocks and doing whatever they had to do to break the peel open and get to
the fleshy part. Soon only the fruggle pits lay scattered around the cave.
A few dragons attempted to eat them, but soon gave up.
“Sindri, I really don’t feel like just sitting around here all day and
night while the others are in danger. I think we should take Rosenwyn and
go help them,” said Gretel.
“What? Me fly on the dragon again. I’ve never flown on one before you came
and I nearly died of fright coming back from Utheria. If I hadn’t kept my
eyes shut, I’d have fainted.” Sindri giggled with embarrassment.
“I think when Rosenwyn gets back she should take you on a few short
flights to get you used to riding her. Remember, Crispin and I are her
Master now, and Jago’s too. I’m a dragonkeeper and so are you, Sindri. We
have to help Quirin, Marti, Crispin, and Claring. Please try to be brave.”
Gretel pleaded with her. Rosenwyn chose that moment to fly back, carrying
some sort of dead creature in her mouth. “Is that a lagupa?” Its fur,
though bloody, looked bright red.
“That’s a lagupa. I’m glad she caught one of those instead of one of the
nice creatures we have around here,” Sindri said.
Rosenwyn took the lagupa into the cave. The little ones, used to sausages,
chocolate and bread, looked at the dead animal. Today is your first lesson
in the dragon ways. There will be no more sausages. This is what dragons
eat. Now, my babies, come and have a taste. You’ll like it. She stood back
and let them come closer. Sulion, one of the blue dragons, took the first
bite. The others watched for his reaction. He chewed away for a moment and
then took another bite. Good enough! If Sulion liked it, they all liked
Sindri and Gretel chuckled as the dragons devoured the dead lagupa. Their
little faces looked a mess, all covered with sticky red hairs.
“Look at you!” Sindri laughed.
“What about you, Rosenwyn?” Gretel wondered.
I’ve already had something. I found a few lagupas terrorizing a bufamee.
The poor little creature climbed to the top of the tree and was shivering
with fear. I ate the others, but brought this one back for the babies.
“Rosenwyn, I want you to take Sindri and me to
find Quirin. I think they’re in danger and need us.” Gretel changed the
If you’re certain, I can take you.
“Well, there is one thing. Sindri is afraid to
fly. Could you take her on a few short flights? Stay close to the ground
until she gets used to it.” Gretel looked at Sindri.
Sindri, is this what you want?
“You understand what the dragons are thinking
too?” Gretel asked.
“We all do, dear; Claring, Marti, and myself and the wizards too. I would
appreciate it if you helped ease me into dragon flying. Just take it nice
and slow and no dips and whirls, please” Sindri shrugged her shoulders.
Rosenwyn bent to the ground and Sindri climbed on her back.
“I’ll stay with the babies. You go and have your flying lesson,” Gretel
shouted. Rosenwyn stood up and flew into the sky. Gretel was relieved when
she kept her pace slow and didn’t go up too far. An hour later the dragon
“I love it! I think I’m ready!” Sindri
giggled, quite proud of herself.
“What about the babies? If Rosenwyn goes with
us, who will take care of them?” Gretel didn’t want to leave them
will command them to stay in the cave. I have an even better idea. Rosenwyn
turned to the babies. “Doo forman carpe lee su. Doo forman lee su, lee su.
Doo forman mi eer bo nah. Doo forman carpe lee su.”
Gretel and Sindri watched and listened as she sang them a song. “It’s an
ancient dragon lullaby. Watch this.” Sindri nudged Gretel with her elbow.
As Rosenwyn sang, the babies dropped to the ground, their eyes heavy, and
“It didn’t sound like a lullaby to me. It sounded like she’d stepped on a
cat’s tail,” Gretel said, “but, it must be a real song. Look at them all.
They’re sound asleep.”
They won’t wake up again until they hear my
voice singing to them. Are you ready?
Gretel and Sindri climbed on Rosenwyn’s neck and sat comfortably at the
base, each grabbing onto one of her spikes. She flew into the air. “I
don’t know where they are exactly, but if we head for Utheria, then go on
that direction to Sparma Springs, we should find them. Do you know where
Utheria is, Rosenwyn?” Gretel hoped the dragon knew her way around.
know the entire island. I know exactly where Darmantha is. The evil in his
heart is strong and his aura surrounds him with blackness and sadness.
Hang on. She flew higher, her wings flapping up and down, one beat at a
time, in perfect rhythm.