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  • Dragon Shanty

Episode 1 Transcript

[fire crackling, stormy ocean waves fade out as Zellera begins speaking]


Zellera

Whew, that’s a heavy fog rolling in.


Hanari

The beacon feels strong, I’m sure it’s fine. Especially since we had an extra pair of hands helping us today.


How’s that? Not too tight anywhere?


Oh, good. Here's your water…


Zellera

… and a little something sweet.


Hanari

Auntie Zelle… this close to bedtime?


Zellera

Oh, don’t be such an old fuddy-duddy. Let’s stay up for a while … enjoy our guest while we can. Don’t worry, there’s one for you, too.


Hanari

Where are you pulling these from?


Zellera

My corscilla case. Oops, looks like there’s a bit on the strings actually, but… mm! There we go.


Hanari

[laughs]


Zellera

Now, how about a bedtime story. I went ahead and brought a few classics up to choose from -


Oh? Oh, of course… [Chuckling]. Well, you’re not The Lighthouse’s first visitor to outgrow the dusty old bookshelf.


Hanari

Time for something a little different, perhaps? You think they’re ready?


Zellera

What do you think, Sweet One? Are you old enough to hear a new kind of story? It can get a little sad and scary at times, then again I see what you’ve been reading lately. I doubt anything in here is going to shock you.


Hanari

Like many of our books, it was written by Auntie Zelle, but this one is a true story.


Zellera

Well, I couldn’t have done it without Aunt Hanari’s perfect memory.


Hanari

That’s true.


Zellera

So what do you say?


[brief pause, then cheers of excitement from Zellera and Hanari]


Zellera

Well then why don’t we get started with a little song?


[strums a deep and twangy stringed instrument]


So fables have failed you, and stories are stale

And you can’t ward off monsters, wielding just fairytales.

You need stranger than fiction, you need testimony

So I’ll tell you the tale of what happened to me.


Zellera

A long long time ago, I was 23 years old and training up as a sailor. The distant lands and the sea bridging them felt destined to be in the story of my life, and I intended to receive its abundance by… well, my plan was to join a fishing ship and shuck oysters for room and board.


Hanari

You’re still the best shucker I ever did meet.


Zellera

[laughs, then continues] But then, on a morning misted in quietly drenching rain, while trudging casually late to my sailing lesson, I spotted a feathered creature crumpled in the clover.


And I’d just walked off the farm, so I figured, surely one of our chickens had been thieved into the fields by a hungry predator…


but then I heard it…


...a little warning cry, nesting on the intersection of a seagull’s seeking caw and a toad clicking its throat.


Admittedly, I was reckless in approaching him. I mean, as soon as I saw those ruby-red eyes quiver open at me, I figured he was just a harmless Drake- someone’s lost, beloved pet or abandoned responsibility. Besides, he looked so weak, enduring a few nips or scratches from him would be nothing after my grumpy hens.


“Take it easy, it’s gonna be ok,” I cooed, grabbing the sail Mama Lilya had made for me... Oh, this sail. Okay, this sail, after hours of beating and weaving flax fibers into immaculate linen… sturdier than any coat she’d ever fashioned. Oh, it was a beautiful sailcloth.


Ah, anywho, I folded it to a size that felt familiar for chicken wrangling. Right foot forward, planted with a little mortar-and-pestle swish.


“Okay little buddy, I’m so sorry about this, I just want to help you. Alright. Ok. Let’s go. Let’s do this.


One…


Two!


Haha, gotcha!


Ah, uh…why not count to three? Because the chickens learned to count and it had become habit.


Ah, anywho, whew, that rain. Let’s see….ah.


I compressed his light frame to my chest. Now what would I do with him? I’d always had a fondness for Drakes, and critters in general of course, so the fantasy of taking him in, cleaning him up, and tending to his wounds permeated my entire body like a sugar rush. I started pondering aloud as the outermost edges of the sail went limp in the whispering rain.


“I guess I should at least take you into town and see if anyone’s missing you, huh. Maybe you’re just a little scamp who likes to run off.


Hold up… it’s… steaming?


[a light playful song comprised of stringed and woodwind instruments begins to play. Zel sniffs in investigation]


…It’s smoking!?”


Drifting embers took bite-sized singes from the cloth, spreading like an ashy rash. [sighs] Within moments, the sail in flames.


My arms stung from the spontaneous flash of heat. I dropped the bundle into a cushion of wet clover and jumped back. And so did he, gliding maybe 100 feet away before tumbling in exhaustion.


“No! My sail!” I cried, “My… how…?”


I bolted forward, collecting my brain from my stomach, pawing at the smoke box in my bag. Of course, nothing about it was out of place.


The creature stood and turned, shifting his weight over four buckling knees. Even the muscles in his patchily feathered neck trembled as it outstretched, taller and taller, like a rooster cornered with a knife and calculating his next move. And… he was entirely unscathed.


“You! There’s not a Drake on this blue earth that could spit fire like that,” I accused, “are you... a dragon?”


As he faced me, his little legs just … gave in. I took a few steps forward, swinging good ol’ six-strings around to the front and letting my fingers take their positions.


“I can see now that was a bad move on my part,” I tried reasoning with him, but knew little about his kind’s capacity for communication, “I’m really sorry. Also, I’m sorry for what I’m about to do.”


And what I did was… I played a lullaby.


[Zellera plays a short instrumental song called “Lullaby” on her deep, twanging, stringed instrument]


[fireplace and tides cue back to The Lighthouse]


Zellera

Oh, whoops…


Hanari

[laughs] Silly woman.


Zellera

Wakey wakey. Are you… Oh! Oh, good. I’m so sorry love, I didn’t think I had enough magic in me after today.


Well let’s see, where were we?


Ahem. The creature’s eyelids softened as he stumbled into a magically slumberous trance.


After properly grieving my sailcloth, I swaddled the dragon up with it and ran towards town. Well, even in my youth I didn’t exactly run, but nevertheless, I made haste!


And where would I take him? To my old pal, Dr. Edwick Peneterre. Yup, Aunt Hanari’s brother!


When I finally heard the hissing steamtowers of Feidelwyn and entered the city gates, I allowed the relief to sweep over me.


“Halt, Zellera!”


Noooooo, damn guards! I couldn’t tell you the name of the one who stopped me that day, but I was… well, let’s just say I was well acquainted with the lot of them back then. I slowed, but didn’t entirely halt.


“I really can’t, I’m so sorry, it’s a medical emergency!”


“Zellera!”


“Found a sick drake, taking to Dr. Peneterre!” I half-lied.


“I’ll be checking in with the Doctor later, you best not be getting into trouble,” he threatened after me.


Well, I didn’t respond to that. How would I even begin?


Finally, I reached a clay building taller than wide, lush hedges of fern under the windows.


I impatiently danced with my legs bending in tandem, checking on the dragon every few seconds. A sign read “THE DOCTOR IS IN AN APPOINTMENT.”


“Come on, Edwick,” I muttered, keeping an eye on the Bards’ clock tower. Eventually, it confirmed that I’d been waiting longer than Edwick’s rigid scheduling allowed for a patient.


I peered through a gap between drawn curtains. The flasks were bubbling and candles lit, but nobody in sight. I flipped the sign, let myself in, and locked the door behind me.


Oh Aunt Hanari, would you be a dear and speak for your brother for me?


Hanari

Oh, gladly!


Zellera


From upstairs, a voice well practiced in hospitality rang out,


Hanari (as Edwick)

“The clinic is closed, please leave your name and address in the book by the door if you need an appointment. Apologies, thank you!”


Zellera

[sighs] “It’s me!”


[a brief pause as Edwick registers Zel’s voice]


Hanari (as Edwick)

“In that case, I know where you live. Apologies, thank you!”


Zellera

“It’s urgent! And very medical!”


[Another pause as Edwick is likely bemoaning events]


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Ah, just a moment.”


Zellera

He relinquished, appearing at the top of the stairs a few minutes later, his amber hair and mustache dripping water onto Old Frima, his Drake of over a decade. She was weary those days, practically melted around his shoulders, but she still managed to slowly rear her head at the bundle in my arms.


“In an appointment, huh?”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“I appointed myself a morning bath.”


Zellera

He quipped, then leaned into his trademark sympathy.


Hanari (as Edwick)

Oh, another chicken?”


Zellera

“See, that’s what I thought,” I began. Then, I told Edwick everything that happened in surely excruciating detail.


Hanari

Even then she couldn’t help it.


Zellera

[Laughing] Alright, alright, you’ll get your turn soon enough.


Hanari

[laughs]


Zellera

Edwick was understandably skeptical that I had found a true dragon, but Old Frima, she knew. Moving more in that moment than I’d seen her attempt in years, the old drake rose up, clutched Edwick’s shoulders with her long claws, and began to shriek at me.


My magic had nothing on Frima’s warning cries, and when I looked back down at the dragon, his eyelids trembled open like seismic rifts.


“Uh… Edwick?”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Frima, no! What has gotten into you?”


Zellera

Edwick rushed with her to the other side of the lab,


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Don’t worry, Zel!”


Zellera

As the doctor lunged for a tranquilizer, the patient locked eyes with Old Frima from across the room. Rather than matching her territorial posture, he submitted a squeak of weak submission.


Old Frima made one final grunt, seemingly feeling accomplished, and wrapped herself around Edwick, who was hastening back with a huge needle.


“I don’t think he has the energy for any more mischief,” I winced, “maybe we don’t need that?”


Edwick shook his head and jabbed the needle sagely into the dragon’s neck.


Hanari (as Edwick)

“He’ll be much more comfortable while I examine him, trust me. Besides, if an unmanaged fire were to break out in here, it would likely trigger an explosion and decimate two city blocks.” [laughs]


[long pause as Zel processes this information]


Hanari (as Edwick)

“So anyway, you really just found him alone?”


Zellera

He tried not to sound accusatory, I could tell, but it still seeped through the cracks of all the times I’d disappointed him.


[Sighing] “Yes Edwick, I would never just take some Bard’s baby like that.”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“This isn’t a baby, Zel. If you’re right, he’s a dangerous predator who needs to be in the hands of someone trained to socialize and care for him.”


Zellera

“Like Hanari.”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Certainly a Bard. Of course, Hanari’s hands are… quite full with Finnigan, but yes. We can both agree that he should be taken to the Clocktower, right?”


Zellera

“...right. And glad to hear she writes to you.”


Edwick slid a wide metal tool into the tranquilized creature’s throat. On the end protruding from his mouth was a scope through which Edwick would confirm what I knew to be true.


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Incredible.”


Zellera

“Tell me! Tell me, tell me! Ooh, can I see?”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“I can’t believe it.”


Zellera

Is there, like, one of those fire danglies?”


Edwick stepped aside, speechlessly gawking at me.


As I looked through the scope I saw it- red and partially opaque, undulating, veins glowing like magma just below the surface. I knew from the moment he set my sail on fire, but now, I really knew. My serendipity was scientifically validated, and the slight chance that I was losing my grip on reality faded. It’s humbling, really, how the smallest seed of doubt in yourself feels like a million pounds when finally lifted. With an urgent,


Hanari (as Edwick)

“I’ll just grab my coat… and a few supplies''


Zellera

We went into town.


Now, my… uh… childhood reputation, coupled with my affinity for seafaring, spurred rumors that I was fated to fall into the sticky-fingered grunge of piracy, and the glares of the noble Bards about the Clocktower campus were the worst of all.


“Not a fan of this place,” I whispered through clenched teeth.


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Admittedly, I’ve grown used to- well, bored of it. Most days I’m quite content to not have pursued Bardship.”


Zellera

Inside the clocktower, we wound through what felt like a dozen checkpoints and countless halls. And each time Edwick vouched for my companionship we weaved further into the ascending labyrinth.


We reached what Edwick referred to as Proscenium Hall, a dizzying tunnel of shifting white lights seamlessly lining the walls and ceiling. Edwick and Old Frima were accustomed to traveling the bowels of this magical marquee, but it left me feeling nauseous and vulnerable. In retrospect, I had also just climbed a lot of stairs.


The tunnel led to a pair of heavy red curtains, which Edwick parted, leading us to the center of a grand stage. My eyes struggled to adjust to the dim candlelight, but gradually, I pieced it all together.


[a mysterious and lightly ominous instrumental song called Proscenium Hall begins to play]


Blink. Above and around us loomed a titanic stone archway, like the maw of a whale.


Blink, blink. From it, we looked out at a petrified tsunami of tiered chairs hundreds of rows deep.


Blink, blink, blink. They smoothly arched up the back wall, ending at the bottom of a balcony the size of my whole cabin.


Suddenly, torches capped with blue flames crackled to life along the balcony railing. The first patron of the platform was Councilwoman Peneterre, Edwick and Hanari’s mother, in deep purple robes. There was also a man with a bald head and colorfully spackled frock on the right, and between the two of them, a much older man with a long beard and red conical hat.


I still believe their uniforms were flamboyant by design to uphold the public image that they were not the absolute bores they actually were. I mean, who would join, otherwise?


Hanari

If I may add- in those days, my mother looked a lot like I do now. Back then, she would have been about my age. Wow… that’s a thought. Sometimes I swear she’s back to haunt me until I realize it’s just my reflection in the mirror.


Zellera

Well, these laugh lines of yours are deeper than hers ever were, and that’s what counts.


Hanari

You’re absolutely right. Now, get to my first entry.


Zellera

I-I know. So as I was saying... Ahem, here we go.


“Welcome back, Doctor Peneterre,” croaked Councilman Frunicus, the older man in the conical hat.


The man in the colorful frock, Councilman Korst, added, “and company, too.”


Councilwoman Peneterre, whose home I’d made countless childhood memories in, sighed.


Zellera (as Councilwoman Peneterre)

“Ah yes, Zellera Orana.”


[long pause]


Zellera

“Oh, uh, actually… it’s Zellera Orana-Tak-Ardell. Uh, my parents hyphenated.”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Hmm. But for the record, Orana-Tak or Orana-Ardell? Orana is of birth, correct?”


Zellera

[sighs] “Orana-Tak-Ardell. Birth mother, birth father, adoptive mother. I’m- I- you met all three of them once… at dinner.”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“I recall,”


Zellera

she stated absently, her quill scratching away on unseen paper,


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Context for the Council, Zellera used to be one of my daughter’s little friends when they were children.”


Zellera

“Yeah, yeah, sorry... did you put all three down?”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Let’s not waste more time on technicalities, Zellera. Tell us what you’ve got there… and why you’ve brought a bundle of rags into our chamber.”


Zellera

Her words hit my ears, slid down my throat, and sunk heavily into my stomach. Maybe it was rude of me to feel entitled to her time and require that she stow and utilize information about my odd little family.


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Mother,”


Zellera

Edwick began, offering me an apologetic glance,


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Zellera has done a great service for the Council today. I can confidently say after assessing it at my lab that she has found, subdued, and relinquished into my care… a dragon, still in infancy.”


Zellera

“Yep,” I confirmed, letting the sail crumple to the floor.


The Council leaned over the bannister in sync, weaved between blue flames. With a swish of his hand, the oldest member summoned a sudden and blinding spotlight. We shielded our eyes- even Old Frima, nuzzling her head into Edwick’s neck.


[frustrated sighing] For the next million years, it felt, Edwick and the Council exchanged information about the severity of his claim and its implications. Then, they went back and forth about how he could possibly be sure I was telling the truth about the fire-breathing as I stood, silently dazed, with a charred sail fraying over my feet and a few mild burns on my arms. Edwick even went into depth over the throat examination.


Councilman Frunicus, the cone-hatted member, was still dubious because all mating pairs and their spawn were accounted for on Feidelwyn, and a trans-continental flight would be nearly impossible in his infantile stage.


Meanwhile, I was reclining into a daydream about this dragon in my arms circling the mast of a ship- maybe my ship?


Edwick nudged my arm with his elbow. I was yanked back into reality, on a stage lit so brightly that I couldn’t even see the expressions of those scrutinizing me in the darkness.


“Ow, uh, sorry, can you repeat that last thing? This light is kind of-”


Councilwoman Peneterre sighed yet again,


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Do you confirm all that Edwick said just now to be true?”


Zellera

“Uh yeah, absolutely.”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Perfect. In that case, we will now convene privately. Please excuse us.”


Zellera

The spotlight died. Sighs of relief. Through the popping, streaming stars of our recovering vision, we waited for the council to retreat behind their partition.


The moment they were out of earshot, Edwick whispered,


Hanari (as Edwick)

“It’s not too late, Zelle. You don’t have to do this, you can say no.”


Zellera

“Wait, I don’t have to do what?”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“What I- we- were just- were you not paying attention?”


Zellera

Edwick stared into my eyes, racking his diagnostic mind.

“Well in my defense, for some reason, I can’t think when my eyes are being scorched.”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“The councilmen are prepared to receive the dragon and send him off with newly trained Bards, but Mothe- uh, Councilwoman Peneterre- interjected. She claims to have a better plan which would involve you taking him under your wing as an Honorary.”



Zellera

“That makes no sense! I have no training! I’ve never even had a drake of my own.”


Hanari (as Edwick)

“Agreed, I don’t know what she’s thinking. Don’t worry, the others don’t think you’re well-suited.”


Zellera

That stung a bit.


And yet, when the council returned, stoic and collected, Councilwoman Peneterre asked,


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“So Zellera, what name will you give to him?”


Zellera

The floor seemed to tilt beneath me. Fantasizing is one thing, but suddenly the insecurities I felt about caring for another intelligent creature, being responsible for whether he grew up to be refined and helpful or ravenously selfish... it suddenly felt so real, so impossible. And yet, so many had done it before me, and surely not every Bard had been as good as I was with animals, so I could totally manage it, right?


“There’s no way this is a good idea,” I thought, “I don’t want to be tied to the Bardic Council for the rest of my life,”


But then, I took a deep breath and looked down at him, my smile trembling.


“Uh, if I had to pick right now, I - I’d call him Gull.”


Councilwoman Peneterre rubbed her temples.


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Is it because he looks like a seagull, Zellera?”


Zellera

Well I couldn’t let her have that satisfaction, now could I?


“Actually I’d name him after Captain Gulliver… ah… Elder...wing. A famous sailor from the homeland of my father’s people.”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Captain Elderwing, you say. My, my, how exotic.”


Zellera

The feather of her quill once again danced to the rhythm of feverish noting.


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“You and Gulliver will report to the Clocktower daily for precursory training. After a month or so, you will set out under Hanari’s supervision. She’s been struggling with her waterborne routes, so perhaps a seafaring companion will encourage her to expand her reach.”


Zellera

“Hanari, like, uh, your Hanari? Also, um, Bardic training is usually more than a month, right?”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“For the first month, we’ll teach you what you need to embark on your pilgrimage under Hanari’s guidance. Your training will be mostly abroad, but in the meantime, you can repay our flexibility by studying hard and proving yourself.”


Zellera

“Oh, ok. Uh, thank you? So is this something she signed up for or…?”


Zellera (as Councilwoman Peneterre)

“Hanari will be fine, no need to worry about that.”


Zellera

“That’s not what I-“


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“I’ll send word to her promptly so she has time to prepare herself and return to Feidelwyn to fetch you.”


Zellera

“Yeah, but-“


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“Sadly, it looks like our time is running out, Zellera.”


Zellera

“But we-.”


Zellera as Councilwoman Peneterre

“We’ll see you and Gulliver tomorrow at sunrise for bond-training, then. In the meantime, I believe Dr. Peneterre can give you something to suppress Gulliver’s fire gland. We’ll send you out with your coin, as well. Keep it on you and he shouldn’t stray far. And Zellera, please bear in mind that the cost of replacing a golden coin is valued higher than your family’s land thrice over. It would certainly put us all in a sticky situation if you were to misplace it.”


Zellera

“Understood.”


Edwick was sweet as he walked me and Gull back out of the city, but the situation had long left his hands. In apology, Edwick described their mother as a typhoon that sucks in confident people and spits them out bumbling fools. This made me feel… better?


In parting, he gave me a small wooden box generously filled with little glass vials portioned out, one per day for the next several weeks until I had trained Gull enough to not set me ablaze.


My Bardic training over the next month was far from traditional. I got the impression that they were hellbent on keeping me and Gull away from the rest of the student body. Instructors somehow seemed to recognize me before I’d ever even met them,

and I don’t think I so much as bumped into Councilwoman Peneterre.


I was compacted into a desk too small for my bulging stomach, memorizing Dragon anatomy and Bardic rites with a sensation of drifting out to sea. So I conjured up fantasies and daydreams to keep me alert, but felt like I was flailing through every wave of trivial information. It wasn’t that I didn’t care about how to best nurture Gull, I just couldn’t… swim, like the rest of the students.


My parents tried to be supportive, but I could tell that they were scared for me.


“We just love you and want you to be happy. You used to come home smiling,” said father.


“It’s uh, it’s been a long time since you fell out with Hanari, hasn’t it?” pressed Mama Lilya.


But it was Mama Tabitha who, while holding me deeply one midnight as my candlelight-streaked tears dripped onto an open textbook, imparted the smartest words I’ve ever heard to this day.


Zellera as Mama Tabitha

“I’ll tell you what I told Lenei when she finished her Bardic training. Your most prized possession is your testimony. That’s what being a Bard is really about when you strip away all the noise. Make time to be yourself and be sure you’re not just telling someone else’s story, because yours is just as big and important and interesting and enlightening, and- well, at the end of this crazy life, it’s all we’ve got.”


Zellera

And I clung to those words the way I had clung to her that night.


After a few weeks I began field training with Gull, which was much more exciting. We practiced basic commands using a Bardic Council regimen of tasty treats, and reminding Gull who it was that held the Golden Coin.


No matter the dunes we climbed or pools we waded, if Gull began to stray too far for my comfort, I would pull the coin from my bag and call for him, just as I’d been taught. One angling of its golden glint in the sun and he would recall to my side, grateful for even the briefest glance before I stowed it again.


Even still, it felt like something was missing in our relationship. Maybe, I thought, telling my story to Gull could be like giving him a piece of me without losing any of myself.


So I asked Edwick for one last favor, for old time’s sake: a letter on my behalf to the Bardic Council, validating a fake illness that would keep me out of training, just for a few days. Of course the workload was unbearable when I returned, but I was so close to leaving Cloverisle for the first time in my life, I took the hit.


Those few precious days were spent showing Gull the scenes of my earliest chapters. We had three meals a day with my family, hiked through the clover fields, and walked for hours along empty beaches.


My favorite memory was a particular sunset evening. The tide pulled back to sea, and in its wake, a still mirror of water settled over the sand. Wind caught trembling seafoam, which coasted across the water in a mimicry of the clouds against the saturated sky.


When Gull was nervous of the billowing foam, I showed him how to squish and kick it; to laugh while testing the limits of new things when they cross your path. We returned to my cabin, a couple of absolute messes from all of our splashing, and snuggled up next to the stove.


“These are the moments I want in my testimony,” I sighed, picking up my Corscilla, releasing everything inside of me in this moment of vulnerability. What came out was a song for Aunt Hanari, one I was due to write before my initiation as a Bard, but we’ll get to that soon enough.


My final night on the farm came, and after a farewell dinner with my folks, I whispered to Gull, “there’s one more thing I want to show you before we leave.”


We took a detour past the barn and into a pine grove, following the rocky incline to a seaside cliff. Crowning the scene was a crumbling old well which offered no water, but what it did offer was invaluable...


A place to store my secrets.


I stepped into a milk pail secured from the top by some chain and the thickest rope I could braid.


Gull was hesitant to follow, so I flashed the coin and said, “I won’t force you into a hole with me, but I know you don’t want to lose sight of this, so it’s up to you,” and lowered myself deep, deep, deep into the earth.


He weighed his options, then reluctantly fluttered down after me.


I tried to comfort him by mentioning that I’d been down here hundreds of times, and neither the clusters of bats nor dripping echoes were to be feared.


“To be honest with you buddy, I don’t know where the deeper passages lead. Nobody really knows about this place so getting lost down here would be bad news.”


I dropped to my hands and knees, leading him from crawlspace to sprawling cavern and announced, “Uh, this is my treasure room.


“Come on in! Uh, let’s see… First thing’s first, uh, this is the old pirate skeleton, which has always been here as far as I know. See how he’s still holding a Bardic coin? I’ve always been a little too squicked out… uh, curses and all that... but now, we’re gonna go ahead and take that. You heard what Hanari’s mom said about the- wait, actually, you were asleep. Anyway, it’s not like this guy’s using it.”


Gull was just as awestruck by the new coin as the old, but once they were both tucked away, his big, red eyes flickered across the shelved walls.


“Oh yeah, and then there’s the rest of the treasures, brought down little by little since I first found this place. I still have the itch sometimes, but it’s been several years since I’ve… collected anything. I’ve worked really hard, actually. I hope Hanari sees that.


Ah ha!”


I pulled an old, brass spyglass, etched with the Peneterre’s sigil, from a barrel of stale tobacco.


“This is what we came for.”


[light instrumental music fades in and out as the scene transitions to the Lighthouse]


HANARI

[whispering] Look, Zel.


ZELLERA

Oh no! How much did they miss?


HANARI

I think it just happened. Now don’t you go waking them up again!


ZELLERA

Of course not! This rest was their choice.


HANARI

Now how about us? We did say we’d take them out early to find the good seashells.


ZELLERA

That’s an excellent point. I guess let’s put this fire out.


Goodnight, Sweet One. We’re glad you’re here.


HANARI

We love you.


ZELLERA

So much.


[END]


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