These characters are from my imagination so if they sound like someone you know or you think I copied from some website/book/author then it's pure coincedence

These characters are from my imagination so if they sound like someone you know or you think I copied from some website/book/author then it's pure coincidence.

Summary: A princess goes missing and the queen, accompanied by a dungeon guard, must find her.

Princess Ven, a lively fifteen year old with a heart of gold, decided to pick flowers.

"I'll be back before sunset, daddy!" Ven told her father, King Els as she tripped merrily down the hall. Two guards had to dodge her to avoid bumping into her and getting a public flogging for doing so.

"Okay, dear! Have fun!" Els said with a smile and a wave.

That was three years ago. And the king was stating to get a little worried.

One night, like every other night, King Els was pacing his quarters and trying to decide what to do. His wife, Queen Jewel, sat on the bed and knitted a sock. Well, she watched her servants knit the sock. She just sat there and supervised.

"Ven isn't home. It's late!" Els said, pacing.

"Dear, you've said that every night for three years!" Jewel protested. "Here's an idea: Why don't we go and look for her?" Jewel made this suggestion every day.

"No no! She'll be back soon."

Jewel just sighed, stood up, and took matters into her own hands. Walking down to the basement, she sought the captain of the guard.

Dawson, the captain of the guard, wasn't too happy to be disturbed from his card game, but got up anyway.

"I have a favor to ask you." Queen Jewel said, gesturing dramatically. Queen Jewel was a dramatic person.

"Like what?" Dawson had no manners. That was why he was dungeon duty all the time.

"My daughter is missing..."

"Really? You don't say?!?" Dawson feigned shock and did a little surprised dance. Jewel waited it out. "If we call now, we just might make the six o'clock news!"

"Are you finished?"

Dawson thought for a moment. "Yeah..."

"Good. I want you to go find her." The Queen narrowed her violet eyes. "Do not come back without her. Doing so results in death."

Dawson gulped but said nothing.

"Now get out of my sight. There's a reward in it for you if you bring her back."

"And that would be?"

"You keeping your head. Now go!" Jewel stalked out of the dungeon. Her daughter's charade had gone on long enough. When Ven came back here, Jewel would punish her real good!

Dawson crept out of the dungeon, gathering up his belongings and saying good bye to his friends...well...his one friend. A smelly guy named Lars.

"See ya, Chuck!"

"Uh..My name's Dawson. Damn it, Lars, I've known you for ten years and you still call me Chuck! What's wrong with you?"

"What'd you say, Chuck?" Lars was old and going senile. His hearing wasn't what it used to be.

Dawson sighed. "Whatever, Lars. See ya later.."

****

Dawson was just about to leave when the Queen caught up to him.

"I know you'll screw up!" She said, pointing an accusing finger at the guard's nose. "So I'll go with you. Els will never know I'm gone."

"Els?"

"The king! My husband! Anyway, I told him I was off picking flowers. That's what Ven said and she got away with it." The Queen shifted the knapsack on her back and smiled.

"That's fine I guess...but where do we start looking?" Dawson asked, sitting on a rock. They were just outside the palace.

Jewel was already on top of that problem. She pulled a toy out of her pack and placed it to her ear.

"What's that? What are you doing with it?" Dawson asked, confused.

"I'm calling Prince Nander on my cell phone. He had a daughter kidnapped recently and I want to see what he did about it." Dawson was about to ask something else but Jewel raised her hand and cut him off. "Yeah, hi! This is Jewel! I was wondering about your daughter..."

Dawson tuned out. He watched the sky, looking for shapes in the clouds. They all looked like Twinkies to him. One looked like a three-headed elephant with a man made of jellybeans riding on his back. He suddenly had a craving for a Twinkie and jellybean sandwich.

Jewel hung up and faced Dawson, smiling. "Great news!" She exclaimed, placing her cellular phone back into her pack.

"Where'd you get that gadget anyways?" Dawson asked, not really caring if she had good news or not.

"Christmas! Do you want to hear the good news now?"

Dawson sighed. "I guess I'm gonna hear it anyways..."

"Nander said his daughter was swept away by a dragon in a north-easterly direction." She swept her hand towards the Mountains of Triss. There was a saying hunters used to remember the name of the mountain range: To prove you're not a sis, climb the mountains of Triss!

"There?" Dawson asked. "In the Triss mountains? That's suicide, and you know it!"

"Maybe, but that's where we're headed." Jewel smirked. "And who said we had to climb the mountains? I said the 'north-easterly direction.'"

"Details..."

Jewel and Dawson picked up their packs and walked in a 'north-easterly direction'.

***

The road was rough and winding. Jewel began to regret the whole mission. She had seven other daughters at home! But she was a mother, and she loved her daughter, and the king was lazy. Those three things motivated her, and those three things alone.

Dawson was making up stupid rhymes to pass the time:

"If you eat bacon go see...no wait..that doesn't work...I know! Here's one! If you eat carrots..no no no...Nothing rhymes with carrot.."

"There are more things you can rhyme with than the topic of eating!" Jewel muttered, kicking a stone with her foot.

"I know! I got one! If you can jump over a snake, do it for Pete's sakes!" He cheered. "Whoohoo! I got one! I'm the man!"

"That was the stupidest rhyme I've ever heard!" Jewel protested.

"I'd like to see you make up one!" Dawson grumbled.

"I mean, *anyone* can jump over a snake..."

"Then do it for Pete's sake!" Dawson laughed. "Okay, so I don't get out much..."

Jewel was about to make a snappy reply when a figure on the road ahead caught her eye. "Hey you! Have you seen a dragon around here?" She called out to the figure.

The figure, which turned out to be a young man, waited calmly until the duo was within talking distance before he replied.

"Queen Jewel? Is that you?" The young man asked, hopping off his horse and walking towards her.

"Yes it is. Did you hear my question?"

The man nodded. "I did see a dragon. He buys bottled water off me from my cart. My name is Dimitri by the way."

"Hey, Dimitri!" Dawson grinned. "Wanna hear a cool rhyme??"

"Sure!"

Jewel clamped a hand over the guard's mouth. "No you don't. It's about a snake. Can you tell me which way this dragon went?"

"He went home, of course. He lives on the cliff side. On Cathy Street."

Dawson sighed. "Sure. Thanks. You wanna hear the rhyme now?"

"Of course, dude! Fire away!"

Jewel walked off. "If I hear that snake rhyme one more time I will kill him myself..." She muttered.

***

Cathy Street was vertical. It scaled the cliff side, straight up. The duo had no choice but to climb.

"I'm not climbing that!" Dawson muttered.

"It's no different than crossing a creek. Have you ever crossed a creek, Dawson?"

"A creek doesn't go up like that. And what's with the creek? Why are you talking about creeks?"

"I dunno! I thought it was a good analogy!"

Dawson said nothing. He had had his share of creeks for one day.

Jewel found some foot holds and began to climb. Dawson followed, not knowing what else to do.

***

They finally made it to the dragon's house. 313 Cathy street. They fell into the cave, exhausted.

"We made it!" Dawson said, whooping with joy, he teetered on the edge but did not fall. Jewel grabbed his collar and pulled him back in. "That was close..."

"Mom? Is that you?"

Jewel looked into the cave and smiled. "Oh, Ven! Is it really you?" She ran and embraced her daughter.

"Did you come to visit? I'm so glad! No one comes to visit anymore!" Ven said happily. Ven was 18 now and she glowed with youthful energy. A man stood off to Ven's side, watching the whole scene unfold.

"Visit? No! We're here to get you out of this hell hole!" Dawson said heroically.

"Hell hole? This my house!" Ven said.

"Who's the guy?" Dawson asked.

"My husband, Lenard. We met in this dragon's cave. He came here to slay the dragon but I talked him out of it." She smiled at the man, who waved shyly.

"Where is the dragon? I'll slay him good!!" Dawson said, pulling his sword and practicing against an invincible enemy.

Jewel laughed at her daughter's statement. "Married? Your house? Don't be silly, darling. Come home and we can discuss this over some milk and cookies."

Just then the dragon flew in. Dawson laughed.

"Whoa! Check it out! Shorty!" Dawson grinned.

Okay, so the dragon wasn't as big as the other dragons you read in these stories. He was about the size of a small car, and red all over. Truth to tell, he didn't look very scary at all.

"Visitors? How grand!!" The little red dragon exclaimed. He ran up and gave Jewel a hug, much to her surprise.

Ven nodded. "And they were just leaving, Cupid."

"Cupid? Bahahahahah!" Dawson was on the ground now, clutching his ribs and laughing. "Cupid...short...little dragon..hee hee hee!!!"

Jewel pulled out a can of mace. "I'm here to reclaim my daughter, which you stole...you...you...little...lizard!!"

Dawson was gasping for air. "Little..lizard! LIZARD!! hahahahahahahaha!!"

Ven crossed her arms and turned away. "I won't go! Cupid is my friend and Lenard and I belong here..."

"What happened to Prince Nander's kid?" Dawson asked, still giggling as he picked himself up and dusted himself off.

The little red dragon sighed. "I remember Amber. She went back home. Nander never told you?"

Jewel got on her cell phone and was calling Prince Nander even as you are reading this. "Hi. Is Nander there? Yes, I'll hold..."

Ven was pushing her mother towards the escalator. "Thank you for dropping by, mum!"

Jewel wasn't listening. She was too busy yelling into the phone. "You never told me she was back? You're supposed to tell me these things!!!" She threw her phone out of the cave. Looking around, she found herself on an escalator. "How did I get here?"

Dawson shrugged. "You were pushed on, like me." Dawson scratched his head. "Say, I have a question for you..."

Defeated, Jewel looked over at him. "Is it about snakes?"

"No. Since we didn't capture the princess, does that mean I die?"

"Huh?"

"You said.."

"Oh yeah.." Jewel said in realization. "No. You can live and play cards with that smelly guy in the dungeon." Jewel put her head in her hands and sighed.

And that is the end of this tragic tale. King Els was devastated to hear that his daughter was not coming back, and that he didn't get to witness her wedding. The King and Queen both visit Ven and her husband every holiday. Lars got promoted to second in command of the dungeon squad..two days before retirement. And Dawson went back to what he always did best: Playing solitaire and eating Twinkies. He published a book of poems! It's called: If You Can Jump Over a Snake. He's rumored to be the next Dr. Seuss!

**END**

Well, I hope you liked the story. I know I can't tailor to everyone's tastes so I will understand if you hate it. Feel free to read and review. Constructive criticism is always appreciated.