Author: Meisha Nicole PM
Melinda and Bryan Hayes have just started their summer vacation and are expecting the usual boredom that goes along with it. However, one night while camping in their backyard they discover a strange egg. After it hatches, they realize they have found an actual, live dragon.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Family - Words: 10,380 - Published: 11-14-12 - Status: Complete - id: 3074385
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"Why don't you two camp out tonight?"
The Hayes siblings stared at their mother with obvious uninterested expressions on their faces that also contained a hint of confusion because neither one could figure out why she would suggest such a ridiculous thing. Camping out in the backyard was something kids did. They were heading into high school and their sophomore year respectively so doing such an act wasn't their idea of fun.
"Don't give me that look you two. I understand your teenagers and your uncool mother shouldn't suggest such a thing but you two have nowhere to go tonight and I think it be a fun way to spend the first day of your summer vacation but what do I know?"
"Mom…" Melinda said gently as she took a step forward. "I think that's a great idea. It'll be a good way for Bryan and I to spend some time together. Don't you agree, Bryan?"
Wincing when he was elbowed, he shot her a look and then turned to his mother with a sort of grimacing smile playing on his lips. "That sounds awesome, Melinda."
"Good! I'll get the tent!"
After their mom was out of earshot, he glared at Melinda and pushed her. "What were you thinking? I don't want to sleep outside!"
"It's only for one night, Bryan. Besides, mom seems to want us to do it."
He snorted. "The only reason she wants us to sleep outside tonight is because she plans to invite that boyfriend of hers over. Haven't you noticed she tries to get us to have other sleeping arrangements every few weeks?"
She shrugged. "After all dad put her through for the past few years I think it's fine that we give her a night to spend with Greg."
"Why can't we go over to our friend's houses? Wouldn't that make more sense?"
"Scout's parents won't let me stay the night. They're too strict for that and earlier you were complaining about doing nothing tonight because your friends had plans or would be away."
Bryan sighed. "Melinda, you are not helping."
"Come on, Bryan. Let's do this for mom. She'll really appreciate it," Melinda whispered as she tugged on her brother's arm and once again he felt like the older sibling.
Most found it hard to believe he was a year younger than his fifteen year old sister. He was more guarded and while, immature and rebellious as well, he wasn't as naïve. His sister could be very naïve and to trusting for her own good. Also unable to stick up for herself, he had to add being too nice to the list and it was why he felt like the older one most of the time.
"Fine, but I'm not going to like it at all."
"I know," Melinda said with a grin as she walked off to go tell their mother.
Sighing to himself, he took out his phone and texted Scout his sister's best friend and their mutual friend. If he had to suffer sleeping outside that night he wanted him to be there but it was a long shot.
Sry can't come! U know how my parents r!
Turning off his phone, he realized he had to resign himself to his fate.
There was no getting out of this tonight.
"See? It's not so bad."
Melinda settled into the sleeping bag despite the uncomfortable feeling she had. She was willing to put up with it because she wanted to make her mother happy. She knew that she didn't have to spend the night out here and her mother would never ask her too but it was something she wanted to do for her.
"Yes it is and if I see a bug I blame you," Bryan warned.
Smiling at her brother, she settled into bed and turned off their lantern. "Night Bryan and thanks for doing this. I'm sure mom is happy to be having some alone time. We can be pains in the asses."
"You're a bigger one then me," he muttered sleepily as he settled in for the night.
The last one to usually fall asleep, she usually had trouble but around eleven that night she managed to fall asleep. However, just as she started to feel like she might get a good night's sleep, she was woken up by the sound of a loud crashing sound.
Sitting up quickly, she gasped as she looked around; trying to calm her heart which felt like it was beating a hundred times a minute. Slapping her brother in the arm when she noticed he wasn't awake, she shook him until he started to stir and had to sigh when it took at least a good ten minutes to do so.
"What is it?" her brother asked groggily.
"I heard a loud crash," she whispered. It had come from the woods behind their house and had woken her straight out of her sleep.
Bryan waved her off. "Go back to sleep. It's nothing."
"I'm going to check it out."
Groaning when he heard his sister pad quietly out of the tent, he lay there for a few minutes until finally getting the energy to push himself out from underneath the sleeping bag and walk out of the tent. Grumbling, he reached for the extra lantern and then stumbled into the forest behind their house.
"Melinda?" he called out, swallowing when he didn't get a response from his sister. Growing worried, he hurried until he saw a light in the distance. "Melinda?" he repeated.
"Bryan, get over here! You won't believe what I found!"
Eyes widening, he was frightened something had happened and hurried. The end result was him nearly tripping over his own two feet and nearly landing face first on the forest floor. "I'm coming!" he snapped, now angry when he realized she sounded fine as she called out to him a second time.
"Hurry! You have to see what I found."
Hearing her excitement, he was intrigued and shuffled closer. Once he reached his sister, he looked where she was shining her flashlight and at first he was confused. "What the hell is that?"
The both of them stared at some silvery, white egg. It was also very large and seemed to be letting off some strange energy. Melinda was amazed while he was a bit put off by the thing.
"I've never seen an egg like that," Melinda whispered in amazement as she reached her hand out to touch it which was quickly slapped away by her brother. "Hey!"
"Don't touch it!" he hissed. "We don't know what that thing is."
"I wonder where it came from. Do you think it was from that loud crash I heard earlier?"
"You heard a crash?"
"It sounded like a loud bang. It was so strange. I wonder if this egg came from that!"
"Melinda please don't tell me you think this egg came from outer space?"
When he didn't get a response, he sighed and turned away, preparing to head back to bed. He wanted no part in this. The best thing was to do was walk away even if his childlike curiosity did want to stay and find out what it was.
"Wait, Bryan! It's hatching!"
Turning around, he practically tripped in his haste to take his place beside his sister once again and he made it over in time to see the egg starting to crack. Glancing at his sister, they shared a look and then quickly watched with amazement and fear as this mysterious egg started to hatch. To their surprise, a reptialian looking head emerged and made a strange sound as the rest of the egg started to crack open to reveal the rest of it.
It was a strange looking creature that resembled a reptile in ways but the two small wings on its back told otherwise. Melinda was the first to speak as she watched the creature call out and stumble out of the remains of its egg. "I think it's a dragon."
"Don't be stupid, Melinda. Dragon's don't exist!"
"Look at it, Bryan and I mean really look at it! What else can it be?"
"It's not a… dragon."
He had started to refute her words but when he saw the thing hiccup and a small, tiny flame erupted from it's mouth he had to question himself. "It breathed fire. Holy shit."
"A honest to god dragon," Melinda whispered as she reached for the winged creature and before her brother could stop her, she had picked the thing up and was cuddling it to her chest. "Look!"
"Melinda put it down! It could hurt you!" he snapped. He wasn't surprised his sister had picked up some strange foreign creature and started cuddling it. She was always brave when she needed to exert some fear and afraid when she should be brave. It was always opposite with her.
"It won't. Look at it, Bryan. It's cuddling me."
Truth be told, it was indeed cuddling her. The thing was struggling to open its eyes and curling against Melinda's chest as it cried out every now and then but it's cries were getting less and less frequent. Then it stopped.
The thing had actually fallen asleep on Melinda.
They were sitting in the tent and Melinda was sitting on one side with Bryan on the other. On her lap was the creature and a look on content. Her brother, on the other hand, was looked like a mixture of anger and fright.
"I can't believe you brought a dragon back here."
"It's asleep, Bryan."
"I don't care! It breathes fire!"
"Shh! You'll wake him up!"
"He looks like a boy."
"Oh dear lord, Melinda please go put that thing back where you found it."
"We've discovered an amazing thing, Bryan and if he got in the wrong hands can you imagine what could happen to him?"
"We're teenagers. It is not our job to protect strange creatures that come from the sky."
"I always wanted a kitten.," Melinda pointed out.
"Yeah, I heard those fire breathing kittens are all the rage lately."
She shot him a look and glanced down at the dragon still sleeping on her lap. He was the smallest thing and a black color. It was an amazing to see such a creature. She had never known they existed! The thing furthest from her mind was letting someone else find him. If someone else found him they might expierment on him and do terrible things but she wouldn't.
"Please, Bryan. Let's keep him."
"Yes, you have officially gone off your rocker. I'm convinced of it."
"He needs us."
"He's a dragon. A fire breathing dragon."
"A baby fire breathing dragon."
"That will turn into a fully grown dragon that is as big, if not bigger, than our house!"
"I'm not saying forever. Let's just keep him here until we figure out where he came from and how to get him home."
"Why is that our responsibility, Melinda?!"
"I feel like we have to do this. Please. I'll do it with or without you but I would love your help."
Sighing faintly, he stared at the creature and winced when it yawned and a small puff of smoke came out. "This is a terrible idea. What if mom finds out?"
"She won't. If we could hide a bird from her that one year I'm sure we could hide a dragon."
"If I can remember the bird died and it wouldn't eventually turn into a fire breathing monster."
She shrugged and shifted so the creature was lying beside her as she settled back into her sleeping bag. "Good night, Bryan and don't worry. We can do this."
"Sure we can!"
Grumbling to himself, he shot one last glance at the dragon and then rolled over onto his side, not liking this one bit. Hiding a dragon wasn't like hiding a bird no matter what his sister said.
This was going to be a disaster.
They smuggled him in early the next morning and it was nearly an impossible feet.
"What should we name him?" Melinda asked as he locked the door, making sure to be as quiet as possible because they didn't want their mother waking up.
"I say we name him trouble because it's what I am sure he's going to end up being."
In response to his comment, the dragon hissed at him and shot a small, tiny flame at him.
"You have to admit that was awesome," Melinda insisted with a grin, picking up the dragon and cuddling him to her chest as she glanced down in his eyes. "His eyes are blue."
"So what do you want to name Aqua or something?" Bryan muttered with a roll of his eyes.
The dragon snorted at this and didn't seem to like the name.
"No, Bryan they're a really deep blue. It's kind of mystical."
"So we're naming him mystical?"
"Mystic…" she said suddenly. "What do you think?" she asked the dragon as she held him up, grinning when he snorted and nodded his head.
About to respond, he glanced over his shoulder when he heard footsteps coming towards the door.
"Kids? When did you get in?"
"Hurry!" he hissed to his sister as the door hand started to jiggle.
"Why is the door locked?"
"Oh, I'm coming mom," Melinda shouted as she handed the dragon to her brother, gesturing towards her closet. She had just unlocked the door when Bryan dove into the closet with the dragon still in his arms. "Morning. Did you just wake up?"
"Yes, I did. Did you?"
"I came inside for some breakfast."
"And your brother?"
"He's still sleeping in the tent," she explained.
"Well why don't you go wake him up and I'll start breakfast?"
"That sounds good, mom."
Watching her walk off and give her an odd look over her shoulder, she swallowed and shut the door quickly. Running over to the closet, she pulled it open and found her brother with singed hair as well as Mystic on the floor hissing and whining. "What did you do to him?"
"He-" Bryan started to say but he stopped when he realized his sister was talking to Mystic as she scooped him up in her arms. "I'm the one with singed hair!"
"You probably scared him or something."
"Stop defending him! You two just met."
Glancing down at Mystic in her arms, she held him up to Bryan. "You two should kiss and make up."
He gritted and sighed. "Mystic, I'm sorry."
The creature let out a whine and then gave what looked like a grin.
"See? You two should keep getting along."
"We still have a dragon in our house. Does that not freak you out?" he asked, completely changing the subject.
"No," she told him firmly. "I think it's awesome. We have a dragon!"
"We still have to figure out where it's from."
"You're always a buzz kill."
It turned out that keeping it hidden from their mother was going to be harder than they thought it was. As one day turned into two and then three they discovered it was difficult to hide a dragon from your dragon especially when he was a terror on four legs. While he was adorable, he also was a rambunctious dragon with a lot of energy to spare that had a tendency to start random fires.
"Did you find him?" Melinda cried out on the fourth day after they had discovered the strange colored egg. The door to her room had been left open and when Bryan looked, Mystic was nowhere to be found.
"Yes! I found him eating mom's garden!"
"He was probably just hungry. We haven't exactly been sure what to feed him," Melinda defended. "At least we know what to feed him now."
"I'm sure mom won't notice food and her plants going missing."
"I wish you'd stop being so negative about this, Bryan. This is an awesome experience," Melinda said as he shooed Mystic into the room. He was quick to fly over to her lap even if he could only get an inch off the ground before plopping himself in her lap.
"I want to know where he came from! Dragon eggs just don't come crashing down out of the sky. There has to be a reason."
"Why question it?"
Bryan sighed as he watched his sister grin at the dragon and then set it down on the floor. "Because one of us has too," he muttered underneath his breath as he sat down beside his sister. "What are we going to do at the end of the summer? He's going to get bigger you know."
She sighed. "Fine, what is it you want to do?"
"Let's go back to the forest tonight and check out that egg. Maybe there's something there that can help us figure out where he came from."
"Bryan, we're high school students. How are we supposed to figure that out?"
"I don't know!" he admitted. "We have to try though."
Later that night the siblings snuck out of the house and into the forest near their backyard. It didn't take them long to find what they were calling the crash site and quickly they gathered the remains of the egg that Melinda felt they never should've left in the first place.
"It looks a little lackluster," Melinda whispered once they were back in the safety of her room. "It doesn't have the shine it did that night."
"Well he did hatch out of it nearly four days ago."
Glancing over at Mystic, Bryan sighed. He really didn't know what he was thinking when he suggested that they go find this egg because there was no way it could provide them any answers. Lifting a brow when the dragon yawned and a puff of smoke came out, he admitted this was still pretty cool and he should just go with the flow.
It was easier said than done, though.
They managed to keep Mystic a secret from everyone for a full three weeks. Then everything hit the fan.
They had known that Scout was on his way to come see them or rather Melinda since the night before. The two had been friends for years and while Bryan also considered him a friend he was and always had been more Melinda's friend then his.
He was the one to open the door that afternoon and Scout came earlier than expected. After he barreled his way inside and ran towards the stairs, he felt a moment of panic. "Scout, wait!" he shouted after him. He hadn't gotten a chance to warn his sister who was probably playing with Mystic. She spent all her time with the mysterious dragon.
"No, Scout don't do that!"
Swallowing when he heard his sister shout from upstairs, he hurried and when he found himself at the top of the stairs, he saw Scout laying on Melinda's floor. He wasn't moving.
"He saw Mystic and then he fainted," Melinda said weakly. "Good thing mom isn't around."
"Yeah, then we'd have to explain this."
"What do we do with him?"
"Well we could bury him in the back yard so he won't rat us out."
"Bryan!" Melinda snapped.
"Oh I'm kidding! Just roll him over and put a pillow under his head. While you do that I'll go get some water."
Swallowing, she watched her brother walk off and did as he had asked of her. "Mystic, I think we might've scared him to death. It didn't help when you blew fire at him."
The dragon cocked his head to the side and made a small whining noise.
"No, this is your fault!" she muttered, picking up the small dragon and walking over to the closet. "Listen stay in here for a little while, okay? We need to make sure Scout is okay."
Closing the door, she watched as her brother walked over to Scout and then through the glass of water at him. "Bryan!" she gaped, wincing as her friend sat up suddenly and started sputtering.
"W-What's going on?" the teen on the floor muttered. "Why am I wet?"
"You fainted and I had to figure out how to wake you up," he pointed out casually.
"Try other methods!" Scout snapped, his eyes growing wide suddenly. "Melinda!"
"Yes, Scout?" she asked nervously as she moved so she was crouching beside him. "Are you okay?"
"I saw a dragon! You were playing with a dragon! Dear god, I really did see a dragon didn't I?"
"No. It was a dream."
Melinda shot Bryan a look. "It was real, Scout. We found a dragon."
He winced as he started to rub his temples. "So I really saw a fire breathing dragon? This is a nightmare."
"He's not a nightmare!" Melinda defended. "I know he has a tendency to burn things up but he's awesome!"
"The little thing does breathe fire and you have to admit that is cool," Bryan pointed out.
Scout sat there for a while and at one point he seemed to be trembling. He looked so confused and there were many emotions running through him. Then, after a few minutes he, turned to Melinda and then Bryan with an angry look on his face. "You two should've told me! I thought I was your friend?"
Bryan rolled his eyes. "You just fainted after seeing him."
"He has a point," Melinda added weakly.
"How did you two even find a dragon? This is like out of some fantasy story."
"He crashed in our backyard."
Scout Stared at Melinda. "He what?"
"We found his egg in the forest near our backyard. He just crashed. I didn't hear it but Melinda did."
Looking at Bryan, Scout stood and then jumped when he heard a sound coming from the closet. "Is it… in there?"
"It's a boy and we named him Mystic."
Bryan shook his head at his sister. "We don't actually know if it's a boy. How do you even tell if it's a boy or a girl? Like hell if I know."
"Can I see him?"
Melinda nodded and practically trotted over towards the bedroom closet. Quickly she opened it but before she had a chance to reach down to grab Mystic, he barreled out of the closet and then straight towards Scout. "Calm down, Scout! Stop trembling!"
The dragon jumped towards Scout and ended up knocking him down. They went flying towards the floor and then he just stood there, on his chest, before licking him.
"I'm being licked by a dragon!"
"He likes you. All he ever does is blow fire at me," Bryan commented with a roll of his eyes.
After Mystic had calmed down and trotted off to another side of the room, Scout sat down on the edge of Melinda's bed and rook a deep breath. "This is insane you know that right?"
"Melinda, you and Bryan have a dragon here. The two of you can't keep him here forever. You know that right?"
"Of course we do!" Bryan snapped. "I've been telling her that since day one but you know how she is when she sees any sort of small animal. I'm convinced she'd do the same with an alligator."
Huffing, Melinda turned her head just in time to see Mystic setting one of the curtains on fire. "No, Mystic!" she shouted, running over towards the dragon as she grabbed him. It was Scout who put out the fire and then made a gesture with his hands.
"See? This is what I was taking about. A dragon is dangerous to have… but god is it fascinating. I can't believe you found one."
Bryan snorted. "It was more like he crash landed in our backyard."
Somehow they managed to calm Scout down and when they did, he had a moment of awe. He was in the presence of a real dragon. It was a baby dragon if you wanted to be specific but it was still a real life, fire breathing creature once believed to be completely mythological.
Despite this it was still something to worry about because where had Mystic come from?
Poking his head out from under the bed, he slowly crawled out and looked at the strange, square contraption. Sniffing the air, he concluded that the soft spoken female was asleep. Actually she was fast asleep to be specific.
Scurrying towards the back of the room, he flew up and landed on a small perch. Butting his head forward, he whined when it bounced against a strange, scratchy surface. After trying a few more times, he blew out a breath and watched as it burned.
It turned out it wasn't enough. Quickly, he sucked in and blew out for a second time. The hole was then big enough for him to fit through and quickly he flew outside.
Flying clumsily towards a group of vegetation, he crash landed and snorted as he shook the dirt off the top of his head. Rushing forward, he ate strange looking plants and vegetables. They were foreign but smelled fresh. After a few minutes, he fell on his back and let out a happy whine as he scratched his belly.
He was full now.
"Kid's I found the most curious thing in my garden today…"
Pausing from eating her breakfast, she looked up at her mother and swallowed. "What did you find, mom?"
"Half of my vegetables were gone! O bet one of those damn cats next door got in the yard."
"Or maybe it was more of a wild creature..."
"Like a raccoon!" Melinda blurted out before her brother could say anymore.
Lifting a brow, she knew there was something strange about the outburst but she couldn't quite put her finger on it. "Whatever you two are doing, quit it. You two are too old to be playing such games."
Glaring at her brother, she quickly finished the rest of her cereal and practically ran upstairs. Bolting into her room, she took a quick look around and then noticed the burnt hole in the screen of her window.
"That's how he did it," she muttered when she heard her brother's footsteps coming towards her room. "He burnt a hole in the screen."
Bryan snorted. "That dragon is a pain in the ass, see?"
"Mystic!" she called out, frowning when he poked his head out from her covers and tilted his head to the side in confusion and feigning a bit of innocent in the process as well. "Did you eat my mother's plants?"
Blinking slowly, the dragon made a small growling sound and then jumped off the bed to bump against her leg.
"If I didn't know any better I would think he was apologizing… or seeing if you smell good enough to eat."
Shooting a look at Bryan, Mystic sent a small ball of fire at him but before it could get towards Bryan it burnt out. His fire still wasn't very powerful.
"I also think he can understand us more than you think he can so I would watch what you say."
"His fire isn't even scary."
"Well I hope you mean that because he just set your sock on fire."
Glancing upstairs when she heard her son shouting, she lifted a brow and frowned. Those kids were up to something and she was sure of it. The problem was figuring out what they were up too. Since the campout three weeks ago, they'd been acting secretive and strange, always looking for excuses to stay home.
"Mom's always figure it out," she muttered underneath her breath and it was true.
They always did.
"It's only been three weeks but he's gotten so big…" Bryan remarked as they sat in the backyard. Their mother was out and Scout along with his sister had insisted on getting him some fresh air. It wasn't as if he hadn't been outside because Melinda had refused to take care of the hole in her screen and left it open for Mystic. As long as he didn't eat their mother's plants, she didn't try to stop him.
"I know. It's probably our entire neighbors' fresh garden food. He can't get enough of it."
"Hey Mystic do you remember where you came from?" Scout asked suddenly. He seemed to be the most insistent on trying to figure out where Mystic came from but his question had been pointless which Bryan pointed out.
"He came here as an egg. What could he possibly remember about where he came from Scout?"
The dragon observed them for a moment after he asked his question and then snorted. In Melinda's mind it was a snort of disbelief and she let out a little chuckle. "Bryan has a point, Scout. I don't think he would know much about where he came from before he crash landed here."
Scout shrugged and crossed his arms over his chest. "Well excuse me you two. I am only trying to help!"
"Is that mom's car?" Melinda asked suddenly when she heard a loud, clunky vehicle pull up. "Yeah that has to be mom. No other car on the block sounds that bad!"
"Let's get Mystic- no!" Scout suddenly shouted when the dragon started to fly "Come back!"
Jumping up to catch him, Bryan tried to help but the dragon was able to fly higher now and kept going until he was over the gate and heading towards the forest. "Mystic!"
"Go find him! I'll stall mom!"
Bryan glanced at Scout and sighed, muttering something underneath his breath. "Why is it we get stuck looking for the damned dragon when it was her idea to take him outside?"
"I think we should stop complaining and just start looking for him. Melinda will freak if we don't find Mystic."
"I know that. She's way too attached to that thing."
"Which is more of a reason to go get him! Your sister will be devastated if we lose him."
"You don't even try to hide the fact that you have the hots for my sister anymore do you?"
Scout faltered as they headed into the forest and nearly fell flat on his face. "Why the hell would you say something like that?"
He rolled his eyes. "My sister may have her head in the clouds but I don't. It's obvious from the way you're so quick to do whatever it takes to make her happy."
"That isn't true," Scout defended.
"You're chasing after a mythological creature."
"So are you, Bryan!"
"Yes, but she's my sister.
"And she's my best friend. Your logic is stupid so shut up and start looking for that dragon!"
Smirking, Bryan knew he had gotten under Scout's skin. It wasn't what he intended to do but it was so easy to do when it was obvious how he felt about his sister. He was always so willing to do whatever his sister wanted and it was amusing. Looking up, they took off running when they saw Mystic about to land. He ended up nearly crashing into a tree but luckily caught himself and tumbled off the branch and onto the ground.
Watching as the dragon whined and shook his head; Bryan sighed and knelt down near him. "You're a pain in the ass!"
"I think we should teach him how to fly," Scout remarked as Bryan scooped him up in his arms. "He is going to have to learn no matter what and we can't stop him."
"That's a good way from him to get captured or something," Bryan argued. "If the wrong person saw him he would be experimented on or even worse."
"Well we have to do something because this is just going to happen again."
Sighing, Bryan shoved the dragon at him and told him to wait there. Heading back to the house, he shouted to his mother and sister and then pulled her aside. "Come on," he hissed as he nodded his head towards the backyard. "We found him!"
"We'll be back mom!"
The two ran off and she reached for Mystic and grinned at him. "You silly dragon! Why did you have to take off like that?"
"Because he's a dragon and he likes to fly," Bryan muttered. "We have to do something about this."
"Like what?" Melinda asked with a frown.
"There's that waterfall near the edge of town with all the big rocks remember?" Scout suggested. "It's pretty closed off and no one ever goes there."
Melinda bit down on her bottom lip. "What about it?"
"I was thinking we bring Mystic out there and let him fly around. He obviously wants to fly around more and we can't keep him locked up in that closet of yours."
She knew Scout was right but it was difficult to admit. "All right. We can try it but if he flies away I blame you!"
"Then she'll never love you," Bryan whispered in his ear.
That earned him a slap.
"Come on, Mystic!"
They'd been trying to teach the dragon to fly all afternoon but it didn't seem to be working very well. He kept stumbling and hitting the rocks and the trees but he was trying. He seemed to be a stubborn creature and was determined to fly no matter how many things he hit. Melinda wasn't about to deter him from that and tried to give what support she could muster.
"There you go!" she encouraged the dragon, giving him a grin when he finally managed to glide smoothly. It was almost perfect until he lost his momentum and went flying to the ground.
"He tried but he failed," Scout muttered, grinning when Melinda shot him a look. It was just the two of them for today. Bryan had wanted to come but he said sleeping in sounded much more interesting than teaching a dragon to fly. Go figure.
"He'll get the hang of it. I'm sure he'd be having a much easier time if his mother were helping him."
"Still no idea on how he came here?" Scout asked as they knelt next to the dragon who had buried his head in some of the grass as if he were embarrassed over something.
"No and is that so bad? I don't want him to go. I like having him here."
"He's not a fire breathing puppy, Melinda."
"I don't care."
Sighing, he humped his shoulder against Melinda and tried not to get red face when she smiled at him. "Let's get back to teaching him. I think he almost has it now."
Grinning, she nodded and poked Mystic before tugging at his tail.
He turned and whined at her, bumping his head against her knee. He did this for a while until he backed up and took off into the air. Flying straight towards the waterfall, he ended up falling into the pool of water below but it might've been on purpose because he appeared to enjoy himself as he swam around.
"I think we should join him," Melinda said as she stood, pulling off her shirt.
Nearly joking on his own saliva, he turned away and swallowed. "Don't you think we should get out swim suits or something first?"
"I have tank top underneath, Scout," she chuckled before giving him a light shove and then taking off towards the small pool. She jumped in and noticed that Scout hadn't moved and seemed dazed out. "Devon?"
Snapping out of it when he heard his real name, he cleared his throat and shot her a look. "Don't call me that! You know it weirds me out when you call me by my real name."
She stuck her tongue out playfully at him. "Then pay attention and get your ass in here! It's not fun if it's just me and Mystic."
Sometimes, Melinda could act like such a child. It was hard to remember that she was two weeks older than him.
Eventually he worked up enough nerve to jump into the small pool. Keeping his gaze off Melinda, he watched Mystic bob in and out of the water while growling happily.
"Why do you two always insist on having fun without me?"
Glancing over his shoulder, he waved to Bryan while Melinda took a few extra moments to notice him.
"I thought you were staying in?" she asked.
Bryan shrugged. "I decided to come out today."
"Mom kicked you out didn't she?"
"It's more like she told me to be more productive instead of being a lazy bum who does nothing but sleep."
Grinning, Melinda splashed some water at Bryan as Mystic blew bubbles.
Walking over to Scout, he nudge him and frowned. "Dude, stop leering at my sister," he whispered to him. "It's creepy and really obvious."
"It's not leering!" Scout hissed quietly.
"Fine stop gawking then."
"It's not gawking!"
"Fine stop mooning over my sister."
Groaning, scout shot him a look and shook his head. "Think whatever you want."
"Deny whatever you want."
Normally, Bryan wouldn't care what his sister and Scout did but it was getting annoying and old. He was going to tease him about it until he spoke him.
"Even if I did, and I'm not saying I do, but if I did she wouldn't feel the same. She's…"
"Flighty and out of it most of the time?" he interrupted.
Scout rolled his eyes. "You don't have to say it like that."
"But it's true which is why you're an idiot if you're waiting for her to notice. My sister never will. You have to be the one to make the first move."
"Stop telling me to make a move on your sister! That's creepy. You shouldn't be telling me to do that."
Rolling his eyes, he splashed some water at him as Melinda finally turned away from Mystic and looked over at the two of them.
"What were you two talking so seriously about?"
"Scout's a wuss," Bryan said bluntly.
"Why are you a wuss, Scout?"
He shook his head and tried to distract Melinda from what they had been talking about by pointing out Mystic. He didn't want her to know anything and wished Bryan would let it go. The last thing he wanted was to talk to her about such things. They had been good friends for years and that was how it going to stay.
"Nice save," Bryan muttered with a roll of his eyes.
"Just stop bringing it up. There is no reason to keep teasing me about it and I don't appreciate it. I thought you were my friend too?"
He sighed. "Fine, Scout. I promise I won't bring it up anymore but try to keep what I said in mind."
"The comment about how I'm a wuss?"
He snickered. "I'm talking about the other things I said but please keep that in mind if you want to."
Helen Hayes was starting to suspect something strange was going on. Since the start of a summer a month ago, she knew her teenagers had been up to something but what that something was, was the issue. She had been trying to figure it out but they were clever ones. Since children, they'd always been getting into trouble and the older it got, the worse it got.
"My plants again!" she cried as she looked at her plants. For the fourth week in a row, they had been getting destroyed by some animal and she'd tried everything to try and get rid of whatever was ruining her garden but she had yet to figure it out. It didn't help that other neighbors were complaining of the same thing. There was something going on but what was it?
"Something wrong mom?"
Glancing over at the back door, she saw her daughter standing on the porch and she sighed. "Nothing, Melinda. My garden just keeps on looking worse and worse."
"Oh…" Melinda muttered as she ducked her head. "I'm sure it's just a pesky animal, mom. Might as well forget about it!"
Narrowing her eyes, she nodded and watched her daughter bolt back inside. She suddenly felt like taking back the clever thought. They weren't very clever but somehow they managed to get away with more than she expected they would.
"Melinda, are you and your brother hiding something from me?" she asked when she came inside, stumbling upon her daughter in the kitchen. "You two have been acting odd."
"Mom, we would never hide something for you."
"Sure, like I expect a couple of teenagers to tell me the truth about whether or not they're hiding something from me."
"Mom, it's nothing I promise."
Lifting a brow, they both knew there was something going on but she didn't know how willing she was to try and find out. "I know it's something and I want the two of you to just quit it before I lose all of my plants."
"We had nothing to do with your plants!"
She snorted. "It's like the time you guys tried to hide a cats from me when you were little. It didn't work then and it won't work now so quit it and set the animal free or something humane."
Melinda sighed. "Mom, I promise you we aren't hiding anything."
"Fine, I believe you."
"Mom's on to us," she whispered to her brother as Mystic flew around his bedroom. They had moved him in here incase their mother decided to go snooping but they couldn't keep this up for long.
"Well you knew we couldn't keep him a secret forever. It doesn't help that he keeps eating everyone's vegetation."
She sighed at Bryan. "I was thinking of asking Scout but his mother is insane and I think she spies in his room at least once a week."
"We'll just have to get mom off the trail," he said with a slight smirk and she had to frown.
"What exactly do you have in mind?"
"I have no idea."
"Yeah, that's helpful."
She had been hearing strange sounds coming from her daughter's bedroom when she finally decided enough was enough. Walking towards the door, she paused to look over her shoulder and felt guilty about just walking in. Her teenagers were about briefly and she couldn't speak to them about it so she had to find out about it herself.
One thing she'd always prided herself on was never being one of those parents who went sneaking around in their children's rooms but she felt today was a special circumstance. Opening the door, the rustling sound she was hearing suddenly stopped.
"Here kitty, kitty…"
She was convinced it was a cat and this was eerily similar to the time her children had tried to sneak a cat into the house and hide it from her. It'd been easy to find them out and though they were older and probably more clever then they'd been as children, she still was their mother and she could out smart them.
"So you're in the closet?" she muttered when she heard a sound coming from the closet. Walking over to the door as quietly as she could, she slowly pried it open but the second it opened, something seemed to go over her head and then landed on the floor before scampering out of the open door.
Surprised that the cat or whatever animal it was jumped right over her head, she bolted after the animal but it was fast. She got downstairs and saw something run into the living room and then towards the door. Chasing after it, she stopped when she saw the door ajar and realized she had left it slightly open. It had apparently worked against her because now that cat, or whatever it was, was gone.
"That is the fastest cat I have ever seen…"
Looking up when she heard her children coming into the house, she paused and cross her arms over her chest. "I found your cat," she told them as they came into the living room.
"I'm not proud of it but I was looking in your room for the cat I know you're hiding from me and you know all you had to do was ask. Now I think you're old enough to take care of an animal but it got out before I could even get a glance at the thing."
Melinda swallowed. "It got out?"
"Serves you right! Why did you lie to me?"
"We shouldn't of lied to you mom and we're sorry," Bryan told her as he grabbed his sister's hand and ran towards the door. "If we hurry we can find it."
"Kids, wait a second! We have to talk about this. If you wanted a cat so badly you could've talked to me!"
Sighing, she watched as they ran out the back door and once again she was left flabbergasted because she didn't understand these kids anymore.
They ran out into the backyard and then straight into the forest.
"Do you see him?" Melinda asked the panic obvious in her voice.
"No. Who knows how far he got?" he muttered.
"Well stop standing there whining and help me look!"
"Melinda, I am neither standing nor whining."
"She sighed. "Just get to it, Bryan! The more time we waste the further away he gets!"
"I'll call, Scout. Maybe he can help us."
"He had started to reach for his phone to call him when something hard suddenly hit him in the chest. The blow caused him to fall backward and it knocked the wind right out of him. "Ow…"
Groaning, he looked down at his chest and found two golden eyes staring back at him. Then he locked his face. "Gross, Mystic! What are you a dog or something?"
Melinda breathed out a sigh of relief. "He [probably got spooked by mom. I guess he was really listening when I told him to always hide from her."
"I wish he would just stop licking me!"
Pushing Mystic off him, he grumbled underneath his breath. "Stupid dragon."
"Hey, be nice to you! He can understand you, you know!"
Rolling his eyes, he waved his sister off and then got to his feet. "What are we going to tell mom?"
She bit down on her bottom lip and then gasped. "I have an idea!"
"I hope it's a better one then keeping a dragon inside your bedroom."
"It is you jerk."
"I just call it like I see it."
It was Melinda's turn to roll her eyes as she reached for Mystic and looked him in the eyes. "Listen, Mystic we're going to through the backdoor and I'll leave it slightly open. While I distract my mom, that'll be your chance to run inside and fly past her. Just make sure you don't crash into anything! If she sees you it will all be over!"
The dragon seemed to nod in understanding and then they set off back towards the house. Her brother went inside first and then Melinda followed.
"Mom, we're sorry we ran out like that."
She eyed Melinda. "I didn't appreciate it you two."
"Next time if we want an animal we'll let you know," Bryan added as he looked over his mom's shoulder. Watching Mystic fly in, he watched in horror as he was about to crash into the banister and was quick to shove his sister to the floor just as there was a loud crash. Luckily, the sound was masked by his sister's fall.
"Bryan, what did you do that for? You shouldn't push your sister!"
"I had a fit of rage. Sorry mom, Melinda."
Glaring at her brother, she was quick to push away the anger and stand.. "Mom, you better punish him! I am so sick of him picking on me!" she cried, running towards the stairs. Scooping up Mystic, she continued running and with her mother distracted by her mother, she didn't notice the dragon at all.
"I'n sorry, mom. As my punishment I'll ground myself for a weekend and no video games or internet. How does that sound?"
Before she even had a chance to comprehend what had happened, Bryan ran past her and upstairs, leaving her feeling dumbfounded.
"My kids are strange."
This was very clear to her now.
The Hayes siblings made a point in trying not to act overly suspicious. They didn't want their mother's mom senses to start tingling so they acted as calm and nonchalantly as they could.
Scout was still helping as much as he could but the more days that passed, the more he wondered if he should tell Melinda everything. It also didn't help that Bryan kept badgering him but if anything he was pushing him toward saying something. He did mean well.
When they were training Mysic one day, he found himself staring at Melinda. By the time he snapped out of it, he realized Melinda was looking at him with a strange expression on her face and he instantly became embarrassed.
"Is there something wrong, Scout?"
"No nothing is wrong. Why do you ask?"
"You've been staring at me for five minutes now and it's really creeping me out."
If Bryan was here he would've told him to spit it out and for once in his life he decided to take his advice.
"I like you a lot Melinda," he blurted out.
She grinned. "Scout don't be silly! I like you too. You are my best friend after all."
His face instantly fell but he didn't let that stop him because he was determined to get this out.
"Melinda I mean I like you. I have for a long time now."
He made sure to emphasize the word like because he was going to make sure she understood what he was trying to help her.
"Oh," was the first thing Melinda said. She then bit down on her bottom lip and turned away in time to watch Mystic taking a flying dive into the water. "How long have you felt this way?"
"A long time," he confessed. The last thing he wanted to do was scare her off but he also had to be honest.
"I don't know what to say Scout," she whispered weakly. "You're my best friend."
The second he heard the term best friend, he knew it wasn't going to be good. Taking a breath, he braced himself and put on a time. "And?"
She grinned weakly. "It's exactly as I said. You're my best friend and I don't want to screw that up."
"It's okay. I understand you don't feel the same way about me, Melinda and I promise you this won't affect our friendship at all."
"No, Scout that's not what I meant."
"What do you mean?"
She swallowed and he started to grow nervous when a blush appeared on her face. "I like you too but we're best friends. I've just been pushing the feelings to the side."
"So you like me too?" he asked in disbelief.
"Yes, Scout I like you too."
"Wow, so what do we do from here?"
"I have no idea. If you haven't noticed I'm not exactly an expert in this."
He laughed. "Me neither."
For a few moments they stood there in silence and then, moments later they were hesitantly kissing.
"I leave you two alone for a few hours and you are already going at it? Jeez control yourselves!"
Breaking apart, Melinda gave her brother a dirty look and tried hard to ignore the heat spreading over her cheeks. "Be quiet, Bryan."
He laughed and then nudged Scout, glad that he had finally taken his advice.
The summer after that moment seemed to go by and soon it was the middle of august.
"So how is Scout? I haven't seen him around in a while."
Taking a bite of her dinner, she lifted a brow. "Mom, he was over three days ago."
"That's a long time for you two, Melinda. You're almost always joined at the hip."
"Scout wanted the two of them to take a small break from seeing each other before their first official date. He thinks it'll make it more romantic. Ugh. So gross," Bryan muttered.
The two of them had been taking it slow and we're finally going out. However, she had been waiting to tell her mother and now she wanted to hurt Bryan for blurting it out like that.
"When did this happen?" her mother asked.
"A week ago."
Melinda breathed out a sigh of relief when her mother let it drop after a warning to be home on time. "Thanks," she mothered to her brother.
He smirked. If he had to sit at home and babysit a dragon then he would be damned if he couldn't have a bit of fun in the meantime.
Sitting with the dragon that night after his sister left, made him think of a worry that had been nagging him for a while now. What we're they going to do when they went back to school. They couldn't very well leave him alone.
"What are we going to do with you?" he asked, laughing when the dragon cocked his head to the side.
Their mother was still suspicious and had been keeping an eye on them. Things were getting even more complicated as well because their mom was suggesting getting a cat and now they were stuck getting one.
"Too bad you don't look like a cat. That would sovle all our problems.
Mystic growled at this and spat a tiny fireball towards him which turned to smoke before it even hit him. Apparently it was a warning which meant that he would not stand for being compared to a cat.
"Same to you," Bryan muttered as he stuck his tongue out at the winged creature.
By the time Melinda got home, it was after 9:30. It was easy to tell she'd had a good time and he left her alone with Mystic after she told him a bit of her night.
"Night Mystic," she grinned as she curled up in bed, the dragon beside her.
This was really starting out to be a good summer.
As the summer came to an end, Melinda knew her time with Mystic would be limited. They would have to be going back to school but they would figure something out. She never really entertained the idea of Mystic leaving even when she was heading back to school because she assumed he would always be around. However, one night she was forced to face the reality that he may not be around.
"I can't believe you came all the way to this dimension! Do you know how long it took to find you? Your mother is super pissed at me. If she throws another fireball at me, I don't think I'll be able to doge it. Her aim is getting better and better."
She had woken up in the middle of the night to a strange sound. Poking her head out of the blanket, she saw this bright light and then this person appeared in her bedroom. Ready to scream, her breath caught in her throat when a male voice reached her ears and then as she looked out of her blankets, she realized that Mystic was walking towards the person.
"Good to see you're in one piece. Your mother will be happy."
Mystic growled softly at him and he seemed tense until the man crouched down and waved something in front of his nose. Sniffing, the creature started to grow more relaxed and after he sniffed the scale again, he growled a happy sounding growl.
"See? I'm not here to hurt you. Your mother only wants me to bring you back home. You've been here long enough."
Melinda watched from under her covers, to scared and confused to move but after he said he was going to take Mystic, she started to push down her blanket and sat up in bed. When the man turned to look at her he didn't even seem surprised and only smiled faintly.
"I assume you're the one who found this guy here?"
She nodded dumbly. "My name is Melinda and that's Mystic."
Turning to look at the dragon, he cocked his head to the side and smirked slightly. "He looks like a Mystic I suppose. Maybe his mother will like it."
"You're… taking him?"
"He came upon this dimension by accident. We had a portal open and this little egg rolled off the table and right into the portal. It closed before we could get to it and we've been looking for him ever since."
He sighed. "It's a long story. We had a little accident and that's how he ended up here in a world without dragons no less! Thank you for taking care of him. He got so big and his mother will appreciate it."
Melinda had so many questions but she had a feeling she wouldn't get any answers. Watching as he threw something on the ground, a strange light appeared and then there was this glowing in the air. It was hard to describe and she watched transfixed.
"Wait!" she shouted as she jumped off the bed. Running over to Mystic, she picked him up and hugged him tightly. "Bye, Mystic."
The dragon whined and nudged his head against her before licking her cheek.
"I hate to break this up but this portal will close and it's a pain to bring one back up."
Nodding tearfully, she put the dragon down and then the male picked him up. "I'll never see him again will I?"
"Dragons don't exist in this world. You shouldn't even know about me but I won't erase your memories or his. You did help him."
Seconds later they were gone and she was left standing there feeling many emotions. The whole summer spent with Mystic passed through her mind and she smiled sadly. He was finally gone, back where he belonged. It hurt because she had grown so attached to him.
She didn't sleep that night and spent the night thinking about Mystic When her brother came upon her the next morning, he remarked that she looked terrible and then she told him what happened.
"He just showed up and took him?"
"Yeah but I got to say goodbye," she muttered as she rubbed at her eyes. "I can't believe he's gone, Bryan. I know he wasn't here long but I loved him so much."
"You get too attached."
Giving him a sad smile, she knew it was true but shrugged. "I think his mother was missing him though so maybe it wasn't all bad, huh?"
"Yeah, think about it. He's probably better where he is because we couldn't keep a dragon hidden here for any longer. Mom would've found out eventually and she would've killed us."
Melinda knew her brother was right but it didn't stop it from hurting. That little dragon had meant a lot to her and now he was gone. Making a sniffling sound, she didn't notice her brother leave and then come back into the room. When he thrust something in front of her face, she was confused but then she saw what it was.
"It's one of his scales. Where did you get this?"
"I guess he sheds these things or something because I found a few in my room."
"Thanks, Bryan. This means a lot to me."
"It's just a scale so don't get all mushy on me," he muttered as he turned his head.
Hugging her brother tightly, she held up the scale in the air and smiled. She was glad to have the scale and as the days turned into weeks and the weeks into the months it started to serve as a reminder.
The summer with Mystic had been amazing. Not many teenagers or children could boast about raising a dragon but she could if she wanted too. He was gone now but the memory would never fade and she would remember the dragon with his constant reminder always around her neck.