Chapter 7: Does the Phoenix Rise?

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 130

Much time had passed sense Calvin and Doolittle returned home. Their trips to other places were good experiences, and profitable too, but Calvin still had his dream.

And sense being home they had traveled the southern regions of the island of Clover, but found no business venture that suited his fancy; he was depressed.

"Alas, I am a failure and a worthless vagabond," Calvin said loudly, while being very dramatic, as Doolittle carried him along a northern road.

Suddenly a shadow was cast over the two weary travelers, and when Calvin looked up he beheld a Fire-Dragon soaring in the sky, like a great eagle. Calvin was awe-struck!

But the moment soon passed because the Dragon glided into a bellowing cloud layer and disappeared.

"Farmer Muller was wrong," Calvin said aloud, "the Fire-dragon isn't dead and it still flies the heavens. Could it be that my Dragon Insurance Business will rise again, like a Phoenix rises? We shall see, Dear Doolittle, we shall see."


(Several sun rises later)


As this planet's two suns cast light over the northern mountains, Calvin broke camp and soon he was making his way along the only stone road in this sector.

Suddenly Calvin happened upon the Fire-dragon's last meal, a meatless carcass still smoldering.

By looks alone Calvin could not say what animal it might have been, but he believed that it was a Brawny-cow by the sweet smell of smoked meat drifting through the air.

Standing near the remains was the obviously unfortunate farmer from which the Brawny-cow was taken; he was sobbing terribly.

Calvin thought to console the man, as well as gather information, so he said, "My condolences, dear farmer. Do tell me how your Brawny-cow came to such an end."

The farmer turned toward Calvin and blew both his noses, using a super-sized snotty-rag.

The nose blowing was long and loud, a four note trumpeting sound that took Calvin by surprise and spooked Dolittle, just a tad.

Then the farmer replied with a look of vengeance in his three eyes, "It was that Devil of a Drag-goon, it was. The monstrous winged beast swooped down from the clouds and snatched old Kate right in the middle of her milking. Darnedest thing I ever saw!

If I wasn't quick as a Hider-fox, by Jolly, it would have got me too!"

Calvin pressed the man for more information, while he was still willing to talk, "Does that Fire-Dragon live anywhere around here?"

The farmer replied, "I hear tell the Drag-goon lives in the mountain pass, on top of the Wizard's Castle. They say that the Wizard hired some giants to build a roof shelter, tippy-top, and that beast has the run of the entire roof; it's like a nest or something."

Calvin thought for a moment and inquired, "How many Fire-Dragons are there, do you know?"

"There is only the one and where it came from, well, only that crafty old Wizard, Gravel, knows for sure.

It is Gravel's resident dragon and coastal guard; keeping pirates away from our shores, or so the Wizard said."

"Did Gravel always allow the Dragon to eat your Brawny, maybe as payment for keeping you safe from pirates? After all, pirates can be more destructive to a farmer than eating a Brawny.

No he didn’t, the Wizard kept about 50 Brawny in the meadow, just below his castle, and he fed the beast one Brawny every feeding cycle. Come rain or come shine, Gravel fed the beast, and it stayed away from our farms because of it. But now that you mention it, I never thought about the alternative, Dragon or pirate."

"So where is the Wizard now?" Calvin questioned, "Did he die?"

I don't know, some say he took a ship to a far off land, and some say he died. But the point is that he hasn't been seen in a Lustrum and his Brawny all wandered off. So now the Dragon feeds on our cattle."

Calvin shook the dust of his hat and asked, "Would you buy Dragon Insurance if I was to provide such a product? The payment would be due at the beginning of each winter, after harvest; the first payment due at signing. The rate would be one-tenth the cost of a Brawny."

The farmer scratched his horn again and asked, "What do I get for my funds?"

"For your funds you'll get your bull or cow replaced, if the Dragon should eat it.

The burnt, meatless, carcass would serve as proof of your loss, just as this carcass does," Calvin replied.

The farmer thought, long and hard. Then he took from his pocket a numbering-rod and moved the side back and forth many times; tapping the side of his head as he did his calculations.

Finally the Farmer looked up from his numbering-rod and said, "Bring me documents of contracting and I will buy your insurance."

That being said, the farmer walked away without another word; when farmers around here are done talking, they are done talking.

Calvin stopped at dozens of other farms in the northern sector and all the farmers thought the insurance was a bargain; they would buy it without hesitation.

Calvin was sure that he had the start of a blossoming business, this time. Now all he had to do was to take his case to the Dragon; or die trying.





Submitted: April 26, 2018

© Copyright 2020 D. Thurmond aka JEF. All rights reserved.


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