“Oh, no” Susie said. “I totally forgot, I promised Mom I’d help her prepare for tonight’s special dinner.” She stood to leave.
Henry looked at her like she was forgetting something really obvious. “Susie, I don’t think we are going anywhere. We are prisoners.”
“Prisoners?” The dragon said, almost crying. “You came to see me!”
“Then we can leave?” Henry asked.
“Leave?” The dragon’s voice took a steely tone. “Why would you want to leave?”
Henry looked at Susie. “See,” he said. “Told you.”
Susie walked up to the dragon’s cheek and patted it. “I promise to come back, and when I do, I’ll bring the ruby I found on the path.”
Henry, understanding what Susie was doing, pulled the pouch off his neck. “You can have these back, too!” he dumped the five nuggets into his palm. “Here are the five gold nuggets I took yesterday.”
The dragon purred like a huge cat at seeing his gold again. “My hoard!” He said, “Please just drop them there.”
Henry dropped the nuggets. The dragon pulled his head away from the cave entrance. As the two children headed out of the cave, the dragon said, “Can I ask you one last favour?”
Susie and Henry stopped and looked at the dragon, waiting for his request.
“Show me your town,” the dragon said. “I would love to see all the happy people laughing and talking to each other.”
“How can we do that?” Henry said, “If we bring you down there, people will be terrified and try to kill you!”
“With the ruby,” the dragon said. “I can see all the ruby sees.”
“You can?" the children said together, completely surprised.
“Yes, that’s why I’m letting you go,” the dragon said. “Henry, I saw you share the ruby with your sister. And Susie, I saw you take the ruby to the jewellers to have a necklace made for your mother. You are the kind of friends I would love to have!”
Susie looked at Henry. “He’s telling the truth,” she said. “How else would he know those things happened?” Henry nodded his head.
“Please keep the ruby and ask your mother to wear it wherever she goes,” the dragon said. “Then I will know the stories of the many friends in my new village!”
“We will,” Henry said.
“We promise,” Susie added.
The two children walked out of the dragon’s cave and on to the path. A gentle rain was starting to fall.
“I would also love a visit, now and then,” the old dragon said from behind them. “If you can spare the time.”
|The Hidden Path|
a fairytale by David Edgren
“We will definitely come back!” Henry said.
“We’re your friends, now,” Susie said. “We will be back as often as we can.”
“Thank you,” the dragon said. “I’ll be waiting here and watching all you show me. Bye, my friends.”
“Bye!” Henry and Susie said together.
---X-X-X--- THE END ---X-X-X---
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