THE CHRISTMAS DRAGON (NOVELETTE)
The box jumped.
Boxes are not supposed to jump. It’s a law somewhere, I think. Maybe Guyana. Apparently not in New Hampshire, because the box kept jumping.
My music made a lovely magic. It was tiny magic, sure, but effective: it thickened the air and deepened the candles’ warm light, caressed the listener like intimate fingertips and teased sleeping nerve-endings toward a gently quivering wakefulness.
Go, me. I made it all happen.
My name is Katie Lin, and two months ago, I adopted a baby dragon.
Well. Technically, the dragon adopted me. Also technically, the dragon is now with my uncle, who’s keeping it because also-also-technically, the baby is really the fulfillment of a prophecy about the “Starling Child” and might be able to lead the Red and Black dragon clans closer to peace.
It sounds grand, doesn’t it? Epic adventure of a lifetime? Maybe for someone who didn’t grow up in a magical household.
The world I know is flooded.
The water’s black. You don’t go in the water. You don’t touch it. If you do, it will get you, drag you down, and you’re gone.
I believe the world wasn’t always this way—that once there was land that stretched forever and water that held no danger—but that doesn’t set me apart. What sets me apart, makes me different, is I believe it can go back to that.