Once upon a time in a faraway land there was an evil prince who loved to breakfast on dragonet steak and dragon eggs (over easy). His bravest knights scoured the three-duchy area, stealing eggs and dragonets from every nest they could find, and killing any grown-up dragons who stood in their way. Soon the dragon population began to seriously dwindle, and the local dragon variety (Draconis horribili delectamentis) was placed on the principality’s Endangered Subspecies list. Unlike the wicked prince, however, the principality’s Environmental Ministry had no teeth. Continue reading →
Once upon a time there was a little girl who was no bigger than your ear, although she looked in every other respect like a normal human child. Her parents named her Earbellina.
By her eighteenth birthday, Earbellina was the size of a small doll, say one that’s about a foot in length, although shaped more like a young lady than a baby doll. “Well,” said her father after breakfast that morning, “you are welcome to stay here with your mother and me as long as you like. But at this age your older brother left to seek his fortune in the Wide World, so if you wish, you may leave with our blessing.” Continue reading →
Once upon a time there was an ugly girl named Ylgu. According to the standards of her time and place, every part of her was the wrong color, size, shape, proportion, texture, or density. The one part of her that was exactly right, however, was her heart: it was much larger than normal, and that was very good. Continue reading →
There once lived a man-cat partnership on the edge of a royal city. The man was a candlemaker, and he did reasonably well in the dark months when everybody needed candles, but in the bright months, when their need for candles flickered and went out, he often went hungry. The cat would have been happy to supply him with as many voles as he could eat, but he found he just couldn’t stomach them.
“Puss,” he said to the cat one day, for that was her name, “I’m all out of food.”
“I don’t suppose you’d like to try vole?” asked Puss.
“We’ve had this conversation.”
“Sorry, Ander,” she said, for that was his name. “What can I do?”
Once upon a time there lived a dragon named Zandy. Zandy was the oldest of ten dragons, and after his father was made into 432 pies and 234 pairs of riding boots by Sir McGregor, the local knight, Zandy’s mother found it hard to feed her hungry clan.
“I’m finding it hard to feed my hungry clan,” she said to her brood. “That’s you,” she explained in answer to their puzzled looks. “Some of you older ones are going to have to go earn your fortunes in the big outside world thing. You can’t live in my basement forever playing World of Weyrcraft, you know.” Continue reading →