November 20, 794 - TR
The lonely sun dropped below the horizon yet again in its inexorable passage through the heavens, an endless cycle from time immemorial. Aerlin and Bringer sat amidst the pine grove in which they found shelter from the storm, and the enigmatic Solice was with them. They had hitched their two horses to a pair of crooked trees, bent with age and weather.
"There aren't any towns nearby, though I'm sure you could easily find your way to Tharmis or Phoedran if you head east-northeast." Bringer offered, eager to get rid of Solice.
"Well, err...that's the problem," Solice said. "The storm played havoc with my GPS system, and I don't know east from west, let alone now from then, black from white, and taco from burrito. Where did that dratted dragon get to?"
Solice got up and wandered around the small clearing, shouting obscenities and commands to the heavens, hoping to coax down his "dragon." Neither Aerlin nor Bringer much believed that such a crazy man could control such a rare beast as a dragon.
"He'll be gone before morning, I assure you," Bringer whispered conspiratorily to Aerlin. I imagine I could throw a stick at a tree and he'd run to it as if it was his dragon." Aerlin stifled a small laugh. Bringer's grip was complete, and she was totally his to command, if he so chose.
"What! You'll not stick me in a tree, you shifty-eyed newt!" Solice whirled and shook his finger as if Bringer had misbehaved. "I've dealt with worse than you, oliphaunt-breath."
Laughing, Bringer waved off the gesture. "You don't quite know who you're talking to. You probably don't even remember your name."
"I do too!" Solice was indignant. "I didn't come here for any of your lip. That belongs to the young lady, here." Aerlin blushed. "Now quit playing games and help me catch my dragon!"
"All right, old man. You don't have a dragon; I would have sensed it otherwise. I think you should quit playing the game and head off to wherever it was you were planning to go."
"Oh, didn't I tell you? I'm coming with you - once I get my dragon, that is." Solice once more screamed up to the sky. "Consarnit, Zcuraks! Get down here this instant, or I'll eat your next helping of green eggs and ham!"
Bringer sighed and rolled his eyes, but Aerlin watched in fascination and surprise as a massive purple and yellow striped dragon slowly drifted down. It settled its ponderous, almost overweight bulk in the clearing by an amazing feat of evasion. It plainly could stand to miss its next several meals, as its corpulence overshadowed even its gaudy coloring.
"Zcuraks, meet Aerlin and Bringer. Bringer and Aerlin, meet my dragon, Zcuraks." The dragon tilted its head awkwardly, nearly upside down, gazing at them with slate-grey eyes. They stared back. "So, ya'll were heading north, eh? I'm headed to the City of Solitude meself, and my rotund dragon here has more than enough girth to take the two of you, if you wouldn't mind leaving your horsies (Pretty horsies! Come here, yes, that's a good girl...) Oh, what was I saying?"