• Published 3rd Oct 2016
  • 2,655 Views, 148 Comments

Flames - Olakaan Peliik

Coming to the ponylands: Not Planned. Being an ambassador for dragon kind: Not Planned. Finding a better place to live where my sister would be safe: Planned.

  • ...

VII- Go Back To Start

Because I was flying against the wind, it took me longer to fly to the Dragonlands than it took to fly to Equestria. When the red sky of the Dragonlands showed on the horizon and the smell of sulfur from the volcanoes stung at my nostrils, I knew I had arrived.

When the mountain peaks and ash clouds poked over the horizon I started my search for the newly minted Dragon settlement. It wasn't all that hard to find either since it had drawn quite the crowd of dragons, dozens of them of all different types, sizes and colors flying and walking in the same direction. All I had to do was follow.

As I approached, below me were dozens of Sea Dragons all my approximate size fishing for food, laughing and having a grand time. As I got closer to shore there were younger dragons of various types—Fire, Ice, Sea, Stone, and Shadow—all playing together in the shallows.

Off to the south part of the shore sat a stone dock. I headed in that direction to land. Landing on the end of the dock and there were a number of Sea and Stone dragons building a ship; even though it was barely a skeleton, it appeared that the ship would be large enough to carry twenty average-sized dragons. Nearby another ship was being built by a multitude of Shadow and Ice dragons.

I stopped a passing sea green colored dragon. “Excuse me, what are you building that ship out of?”

The dragon looked behind him at the construction. “Oh, that? It’s a buoyant coral we found growing on the bottom of the ocean. When we harvest the coral, it's moldable, but after a few hours it hardens and becomes rather dense. We started growing the coral not far off shore so we’d have enough.”

“You can grow coral?” I asked.

“Well, yeah. It is a plant after all. If you’ll excuse me, I’ve got work to do.” He turned away to do as he was supposed to be.

I made my way over to the next ship and found another worker, an Ice dragon this time. “I thought only the Sea Dragons were to be building a ship?”

“They were. But we wanted to make one too,” she told me, hammering in a joint

“To see who does better?” I asked.

“Maybe,” she shrugged. “Yeah,” she finally admitted with a grin. We shared a laugh before we continued on our ways. The dragons here seemed to be in good spirits, I was glad for that.

As I started toward the stone town that was being built on land, or rather down into it—it was being built in a volcanic depression—I could see the Stone Dragons abilities first claw. Also how this dragon city was being built so quickly.

To connect and hold the rocks together Stone Dragons literally ate the stones, and then threw them up as molten rock that Ice Dragons were cooling rapidly with their frost breath. The scent of brimstone hung heavy in the air as they worked, fusing the magma into the shapes they wanted.

“That is both disgusting and awesome,” I said to a passing Stone Dragon. She just shrugged and continued on her way.

Looking around, I could see that they were carving the streets and buildings in the city downward out of the black and red rock. The streets were mostly stairs going down or up in various directions. There were also plenty of claw holds so dragons could climb up the walls to get to different levels since the streets were too tight for wings. The amount of work they have gotten done in such a short amount of time was amazing.

“I thought it was your mug coming in from over the sea.” I heard a familiar voice say.

I turned around to see Princess Ember standing there with another dragon, scowling at me. “Good to see you too Princess,” I bowed to her. “How’s your father?”

She glared at me. “Don’t make with the niceties. I’m only here for the remainder of the day.”

“I see. Who is this?” I asked, turning to the dragon next to her.

“Krein, this is Uthiik, He’s the one father appointed to oversee this place.” She let Uthiik walk up to me so we could size each other up.

He was a Shadow Dragon. His black scales were fading to gray, and his eyes were cloudy indicating he was going blind. Despite the dim glow of his eyes, I could see a wise look on his face. I’d guess he was in his nine hundreds. “Fire Dragon eh?” he asked in a low grumble of a voice.

“Yes Elder,” I bowed respectively.

“Oh, don’t call me that kid. I’m old, yes, but ‘elder’ sounds worse than it is. Now get up you dolt,” he growled. “We have matters to discuss. Follow me to our Athenaeum.”

I stood and followed the both of them. “Athenaeum? Only the dragon Olakaan would have named a library something fancy like that.”

“He runs it and lives there. Olakaan moved his whole book hoard here so more dragons could learn. Not that they do,” Uthiik rolled his eyes.

This was a small issue. Olakaan was a good dragon, one of the only Ice dragons I get along with, but he might still be mad at me since Kii had chewed up one of his books the last time I went to his home. His father was not my biggest fan to be certain.

The Athenaeum was off to the side of the town and built into the wall adjacent to the water. It was a simple stone carved door we passed through. Inside it was a cavern of glowing firestone torches for light, and shelves carved into the rock walls and columns.

Olakaan was at the back of the Athenaeum organizing some books, using his talons and the hooks on his wings to cling to the wall as he sorted the old tomes that he and his father had collected over the years.

“Hey Book Lizard! Get down here so we can talk!” Ember barked, nearly making Olakaan fall of the wall.

Olakaan was a fairly simple Ice dragon. He had spines like icicles and serrated claws, both with a bluish hue. His scales were snow white and the membranes of his wings were light blue. He had glasses made of carved, transparent crystals and iron; to this day, I am not sure if he actually needs them or if he just wears them to look smart. He was also younger than me, which I thought was odd since his collection was way older than even Lord Torch was.

He looked at me, then turned away and refused to look at me again. “How can I help today, Your Highness?” he asked Ember with a bow.

“You’re on my counsel since you know the most of Dragon history,” Ember stated. “Today we're deciding how to deal with four issues; Security, trade, educations, and healing for those who need it.”

“Oh is that all?” Olakaan started flying around his library and dropping books on an elevated stone slab being used as a table.

“Is he always like this?” Ember asked.

“Eh,” Uthiik and I said at same time and shrugged.

“Depends on his mood,” I answered, starting toward the table where Olakaan was opening a book.

“I see your walking shredder isn't with you. She still alive?” he asked without looking up at me.

“She is. This week was her first week at school in Equestria,” I told him.

“Oh, good for her. She can eat their books instead of mine,” he commented, the bitter tone in his voice not wavering.

“She was barely six months old, dude,” I argued.

Olakaan countered, “You were supposed to be watching her.”

Ember and Uthiik joined us at the stone table. “First thing we should discuss is security for the city,” Uthiik interrupted.

“I agree,” Ember said nodding.

“Why security first?” I inquired.

“We've had a few lindwurms and wyrms attack the transport and resource teams. As well as increased magma golem attacks and various other dangerous creatures have been in unrest since we started gathering together. Luckily no injuries or deaths have occurred,” Uthiik explained.

“I'm sensing a ‘but,’” I commented.

Ember jumped in. “But we have no idea how to run a security or military force. Recruiting dragons to defend each other isn't exactly easy, considering our history.”

I thought of what I read in the books I borrowed from the Canterlot Library. They had some insight on how the ponies ran their forces. “Do we have a healer, somedragon in charge of anything medical?”

“We do, but what does that have to do with security?” Uthiik asked.

“We start a recruiting run. Ask dragons to defend the city. Those who sign up, run them through a medical screening so they are fit for duty. Then train them to fight like a team, then those who can teach others the same will do so as we get more,” I explained.

“But we know nothing of this kind of thing,” Uthiik commented. “How will we get this started?”

“Upon my return to Equestria, I could request the princesses to send some advisors,” I suggested. “They have plenty of them. They could help with training and recruitment.”

“Yeah, that’ll work,” Ember rolled her eyes. “Taking orders from ponies. They only listen to my father because he’s bigger than all of them.”

“They have accepted working together already,” Uthiik commented, glancing back outside at the city behind us. “Perhaps more progress can be made.”

“But what kind of ponies would want to work with dragons?” Ember asked. “They all think we’re vicious, meat-eating monsters.”

“We kind of are…” Olakaan commented, but a glare from Ember silenced him.

“I can still try,” I offered. “Some ponies were willing to be nice to me, and besides, an alliance with the dragons would be beneficial to them.”

Ember frowned in thought, crossing her arms, but finally nodded. “See what you can find.”

“So, enforcers to ensure peace and safety. That would be a moral boost to most.” Uthiik wrote some notes down on some parchment for later. “I think we should consider a mail service as well, so dragons can purchase things from the ponies by mail. Also so I can contact you if there is something that I require Ambassador level assistance.”

“Agreed. Shadow Dragons are the fastest flyers we have so we’d want them a part of the courier duty,” Ember nodded.

“Okay, so that's two things down, healing is next—” Olakaan pushed on.

I gave my input on how I knew the Princesses ran things back in Equestria as the meeting went on. Ember jumped in when she felt like it and Olakaan always read from the history books.

After the meeting Uthiik wanted to show me around the rising city, and how they ran things. Occasionally he'd ask if I had a suggestion.

“—and down here is our trade center,” Uthiik said as we walked into a market street.

Fish and fruits were being traded for things other dragons needed. I spotted a trader toward the end with fire-red fur pelts. I approached the trader as my curiosity peaked at the strange fur.

“What kind of fur is this?” I asked at I touched some with a claw. It was warm, like the embers of a fire.

“These are fire wolf pelts! Very unique, their fur is heated like their natural environment. My family hunts them near the magma lakes,” the dragon explained.

“Curious,” I commented, still running my claws through the pelt. “I've been all over the Dragonlands. I've never seen a fire wolf.”

She shrugged. “You gotta know what to look for. So, you interested?”

Interested? I did need something to thank the Princesses for taking care of Kii for me. Perhaps a gift from our homelands would be enough. “What you want for three of them?”

“Well, what you got?” the other dragon asked, leaning forward.

The only thing I had on me was my bit bag that I had tied to the base of my wing. I reached for it and stuck my claw in to see if there were any big bits in there. My claw brushed up against a smooth rock. I grabbed it and pulled it out of the bag. It was a nice and shiny blue sapphire. Odd; I thought the bank converted all of my jewels into bits. I was about to put it back.

“Ohh, I'll give you four pelts for that sapphire if you’d like?” the dragon merchant said, staring at the gem. The bright blue light reflected in her eyes. It was obvious she was trying to sweeten the deal cause she wanted the gem.

I was still a little puzzled as to why I still had a few gems at my disposal, but I could worry about that later. “Yeah, that gives me an extra.” I gave her the sapphire and she gave me four well-sized pelts.

“Thank you for your business,” she said quickly, putting the sapphire away and continuing to organize her inventory.

Uthiik waited for me to be done before speaking. “Nice purchase. I take it you'll need a way to carry those back with you?”

I looked at my purchase, and then back at Uthiik and nodded.

“I have a spare set of bags in my quarters. We can drop your pelts off there before we take a look outside the city,” he said turning around and heading up some steps.

“Outside the city?” I asked in puzzlement.

Uthiik started heading back the way we came. “You'll see.”

We climbed up to Uthiik’s quarters near the Athenaeum. It was a small dwelling made at the top of one of the stone towers, with an adjoining guest quarters. Uthiik gave me his spare wing satchel and let me put my things down in the guest room.

Uthiik made his way to the door. “You ready? We’re flying to the outside of the city.”

“Yeah, let’s go,” I said hurrying up beside him.

He climbed out the door and up the remainder of the stone structure. I dug my claws into the outside wall and closed the door. I hoisted myself up to the roof and jumped off, taking flight with Uthiik.

We headed inland, over the Athenaeum and to what looked like a field of Dragon Fruit plants. We landed outside a stone home of a combination of Stone and Fire Dragon hybrids. We approached one not much older-looking than I. His scales were stone gray, as I got closer I could see red coloring shining through the thinner parts of his scales. He was bulky, like a stone dragon, and had bright red wings. It was apparent by his look, that he was a stone-fire hybrid.

“Hello, Uthiik. How can I help you today?” he asked.

“Oh, nothing much today Eruptor,” Uthiik greeted him warmly. “I'm just showing our Ambassador around. Seeing if he has any suggestions for us.”

Eruptor shifted his stance to face us. “Oh well, much appreciated, we're having a rough start to the Dragon Fruit farming.” He pointed to the cactus-like plants behind him, which were just starting to develop spiky yellow fruit.

“It's been super hard planting them!” a voice suddenly said from beside me.

I looked to see a young dragon, not much older than Kii, sat there looking at me with the brightest pink eyes I've ever seen a dragon have. “Hi—” is all I managed to get out before she started talking again.

“Hi! I'm Zixiir! I already know your name, it's Krein, right? Are ponies fun? How long of a flight is it to Equestria? What are the princesses like? What is there to do in Equestria?” she rapid-fired questions at me faster than I could answer them.

“Zixiir!” Eruptor barked. “Why don't you go pick some fruits for our guests?”

“Yes, daddy!” Zixiir ran off into the field of Dragon Fruit plants.

“Well she's just bursting with energy,” I commented.

“Her mother and I have absolutely no idea where she gets it,” Eruptor joked. “Anyway, we hear the earth ponies have an expertise in farming. We could definitely use some input if you know any.”

“I don't, but I'm sure Princess Celestia might know of some Equestrian farmers that might be willing to help,” I told him.

“Any help would be appreciated at this point,” Eruptor nodded, casting his eyes over the fields once more.

Zixiir reappeared between Uthiik and me, holding a bunch of dragonfruits. “Wanna try one?”

“What?” How'd she get here without being seen? “Uh, sure.” I took one of the fruits from the youngling.

She hopped over beside her father. “I hope you like them. They’re from the first batch we replanted, so they've had the most time to ripen.”

I sat on my haunches to free up my claws to work the fruit. I cut the outside skin in half and did my best to rip the two halves apart. The inside of the fruit was a juicy red color dotted with black seeds.

Biting into the fruit, my mouth was filled with a tangy sweet flavor, not overpowering, with lots of juice. Swallowing the first bite, I took another look at the fruit. “This is really good.”

“I'm glad you like it,” Eruptor said with a smile.

“We should really be on our way. We have a few more matters to discuss before sundown,” Uthiik said, finishing his fruit.

I was failing to make mine last, cleaning off the first half. “Yeah, lead the way,” I said starting on the second half. “Until next time.” I waved a wing at Eruptor and Zixiir. They waved back as Uthiik and I took flight back toward the city.

This trip was more than I had expected. I'm seriously hoping that these dragons can keep it up, and not let ancient history get in the way of us becoming welcomed with the rest of the world.

Before leaving the next day, I had a stop I wanted to make. I went to the Athenaeum to see Olakaan.

“Yo, Olakaan! You here?” I yelled into the library.

“I'm in the back, what do you need?” his voice echoed my way.

“I was just wondering if you needed anything? I'm headed back to Equestria in a short while and I was wondering if you wanted me to bring you back anything on my next visit!” I yelled enough so he could hear me.

He flew in from around a stone pillar, and landed in front of me, clutching a fairly new looking book under one arm. He scowled at me for a moment, then grunted.

“There is one thing. Ever since I was asked to move here and be the city's librarian, historian, and teacher, I started writing something. I doubled down on it when I heard we might have interactions with ponies.” He held out the new book for me to take.

I took the large book in my claw and had a look at the title on the cover. Dragonology: Everything One Needs to Understand Our Culture. I looked back up at Olakaan.

“I included illustrations and much information on our kind that even Lord Torch doesn't know,” he said with a note of pride.

I gave the book another glance before asking. “What do you want me to do with it?”

“I heard ponies have books copied and published in bulk. I want the same done to this. Simple as that.”

I put the book into my wing satchels that Uthiik gave me and that held the fire wolf pelts. “I’ll get it done. We okay?” I asked.

He eyed me. “Yeah, we're okay.” He held a closed talon out.

I bumped it with a closed talon of my own. “See you next time.”

“Yeah, yeah. Get out of here before I change my mind.” He turned away and flew back into his library.

I exited the Athenaeum and made my way up and out of the city. Taking flight northwest, I quickly found the air current I wanted and allowed it to carry me back towards Equestria.

Author's Note:

A special thanks to PonyJosiah13 for editing this chapter for me.


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