The morning air was heavy. Berry was sitting out on her usual landing space, looking out into the distance into the horizon. One side of the city was cut away and filled with more modern-day skyscrapers and houses, while the other half was a forest. The city had grown even more prominent.
Her gaze cast out into the open world.
Today was the day for the army to head toward the Divine city, city port. She had been waiting for this day.
Her mind was strangely calm.
The armor she wore was gold in color that perfectly matched her body’s curve. In addition, her horn grew a bit longer, giving her a more majestic vibe.
Behind her, Berry heard footsteps approaching as it stopped at her side.
“Berry,” Olivio spoke.
Berry didn’t say anything.
They stood in silence for a moment, taking in the last peace that they would be able to stay in.
“Yes?” Berry finally decided to speak up, wondering why he wasn’t saying anything.
“How are you feeling today?” Olivio turned his gaze toward her. There was a spark in his eyes that she could tell that he was ready for war that all Dragons had as she had it in her eyes.
“Calm….it’s as if the world had gotten silent, and I am in the middle of the storm.”
Olivio shook his head, understanding her. “It seems you have made your peace.”
“Good, you will need it when the storm rages for the coming days.”
I nodded my head.
“Why did you marry, mother?” I wanted to know the answer, primarily because in the short amount of time that we interacted, I had known about his likes and dislikes and who he was. But he was opening up a lot faster than I thought I would ever expect.
I was shocked by his answer. “Really? It wasn’t because it was arranged?”
“Well, that too.” He chuckled. “She was a wildcat.”
I tilted my head, wondering what stories he would tell me.
“Feisty and spicy,” A big grin erupted on his lips, “there were times when she would put me in my place, getting on me on things that I have done wrong. Trying to guide me whenever she could, not ever giving up on me. Then, of course, our morals, beliefs, and sometimes the words and languages would differ, causing issues. But we both listened. Listened and trying to understand each other’s soul intention.”
His words ring through my very core.
“Soul’s intention.” Berry slurred the phrase over and over again.
“Yes.” Olivio slowly shocked his head. “Everyone has it, but not many listen, mostly afraid what would be heard, the others unsure if it’s something that they want to dive into, or they just don’t care. Hence, the irreplaceable connection between two beings, opening up fully to one another without judgment. It is because you are willing to accept them for who they are, becoming vulnerable. From there, we helped each other grow, watering each other, pulling and pushing each other forward.”
Olivio put his arm behind him, taking a moment of silence.
“It takes a lot to make things work out between two people,” said Olivio, “One must work on it every day, almost like watering a plant, doing the little things that matter. The trap, though, is when we get too comfortable that we forget to do the small little things again; eventually, leading to the dissonance between two people.”
“How did you guys keep it going?” I asked, curious.
“Appreciating the small little things, being able to come together and calmly talk with one
another even when our emotions are at their peak, talking about our feelings and actually not pushing it away. Facing your fears together, but most importantly, patience.”
I thought it over in what he had said. To hear that my mother and father were living such a blissful life and my aunt destroyed it made me infuriated. Why? Because of the peace that she had tried to take for herself and take what she could.
“We honor the dead by remembering the best version about them, Berry. It is what makes it bearable to continue living. That is the true gift that she left behind inside of us as well as you.”
His words struck like a hammer, shaking my very soul.
At that moment, a flood of memories unlocked in my mind.
Every memory that I had to the day my aunt had come in and taken my mother’s life. Such shock had left an ugly imprint, locking away everything she had done. My aunt tried to kill me, tearing my soul in half, but my mother saved me.
Half my soul was cast into the body of a young girl in the world of Earth. In that life, I lived a new life. It was a hard life as those memories flashed before me. Finally, I died and was cast out and sent back home to the body I now have.
The confusion of a broken soul clashed amongst each other, suppressing the dragon side as it needed time to adjust, healing over time to become one.
My head felt numb as I faltered.
Olivia reached out to catch me, keeping me steady in place. “Berry?”
I didn’t hear him.
The memories kept pouring in more and more, becoming stronger and stronger. Every little detail traces across my mind like a film reconnecting from black and white, turning into color.
I groaned, rubbing my forehead.
“Berry?” Olivio asked again, concerned.
Slowly, the memory started to filter out. I thought I heard a click in my head as if the world around me shifted. I blinked a few times.
I inhaled deeply, letting the airflow in my body.
The taste of the air around me was different. It was as if the stark contrast of what I used to know was gone and replaced with an extra sense. Even when my eyes opened, I could see the illuminating color of auras floating in the air, buzzing in and out.
“Thanks.” My voice was a bit higher than before but had that low animalistic tone behind it that had power behind it.
“I still prefer Berry,” I spoke, taking a few steps away from him.
“I see…” Olivo looked at me curiously. “Are you sure you are alright?”
“Yes, father,” I spoke in a tone that was me but not. It was strange to finally be connected to my true self again.
“Father….It’s been a while since I heard you speak in such a manner….it almost brings
“In a sense, my memory is back.”
“Yes.” I nodded. “I remember, mother. It’s been too long….”
“Yes…” The atmosphere was slightly dreary.
“What caused the sudden recollection?”
I took a moment to think back. “Talking about mother and standing here with you.”
“But we have talked about her like any other time.”
“True, but there was something more that started the link,” I replied. “It’s what you said after.”
“That is quite interesting….” Olivio spoke. “I am glad that you are fully back.”
I grinned. “As always, you haven’t changed.”
Olivio shrugged his shoulders; a small smile escaped from his lips as he looked away, a bit embarrassed. I could see that the tip of his ear and his neck were slightly turning red.
“Well, are you ready to stir up some trouble?” I asked; the dragon in me was excited to go out and create some chaos.
“Absolutely,” Olivio replied back with a shake of his head.
We both nodded. Olivio started first as he leaned over and fell. He shifted in midair, turning into a majestic gold dragon with speckled patterns of black accents. The sun touched his gold scale-like diamonds shining in the sky.
The first word that came out of my lips was “beautiful.” The gem-like quality of his scales was awe-inspiring.
I followed right behind him, jumping off the ledge and transforming rapidly into my dragon form. The start difference of pure white, flying next to the gold dragon. It was a sight to behold.
Many people gawked as we flew above them, casting shadows below us. To see the second dragon in the city was rare, especially of such brilliant color. Many wondered who it was, pointing and shouting at the blessing they were gifted with.
We flew side-by-side, heading toward the direction where the army had left a few days ago.
The environment changed underneath us from heavy forest and fogs to open plains that stretched for miles upon miles.
We traveled day and night, taking breaks wherever we could. Chatting together in the sky, talking about the old memories of the past.
It was one of the best experiences I had had in a long time, which I was glad for. Of course, I wanted it to last even longer, maybe even fly a bit further, but that wasn’t so.
Eventually, I could smell the salty and fresh air of the ocean waters. It was revitalizing as I also saw the wash of auric blue heavily surrounding the port city.
It was quite a mesmerizing sight.
“Beautiful, isn’t it,” Olivio spoke.
“Yes.” I nodded. I couldn’t get enough of the fresh air, the beautiful scenery of buildings that completely contrasted against the city that I had come from, where modern technology had completely taken over the whole city.
The ancient and pleasant mix between modern and olden times was present. It was quite beautiful as the lush nature seemed to mix in with the buildings, pleasantly that it looked straight out of a fairy tale story.
Even the middle of the city was a large majestic clock tower that stood proudly. Many markets of different colors and street vendors were present as the streets were busy with people. They looked up when a large shadow passed overhead.
Some pointed and shouted; others gazed up in awe.
All around the market square spread out in a circle, dividing into five different districts: commercial, private homes, mansions, slums mixed with the port, and the fifth the government building.
The port was the largest that took over the whole west side. A large number of ships were present. I was impressed by the many ships present, each bigger than the one next.
“Welcome to Portebell City.” Olivio said, “The city that still to this day speaks five different languages: human, divine, elven, beast, and dwarven.”
“That is quite a lot of languages.” I spoke, I barely even know two, and almost all of most of the citizens in Portebell City.”
We started our slow descent downwards towards a large open space near the port.
People started to scatter, moving away as we landed. My wings started to beat harder to push away the dust and dirt, even causing some residents to stumble backward and fall down.
I landed with much grace.
Olivio didn’t change and kept in his dragon form.
I was just about to ask why when he turned his gaze at me. He shook his head once, telling me not to change.
Opening and closed my mouth, trying to speak. He knew what I wanted to ask.
“It’s normal here, don’t hide who you are,” Olivio spoke.
“I’m not,” I replied back; there was no reason why I would want to hide. I wasn’t the type to.
“Seeing a dragon in this port city symbolizes good luck.”
“Oh, is that why there are so many people coming around and trying to touch me?” I had to wave a few people away, trying not to get completely swamped by them.
“Yes, and no.” Olivio said, “You came with me.”
“And that means?” I looked towards him, cocking my head to the right.
“I’m the guardian of this city. Not many dragons come here, and they remember you.”
“They do?” I couldn’t help but question him.
“Yes, you came here with me when you were a baby.”
“I don’t remember that.”
Olivia chuckled. “You were asleep in my hands when we arrived.
I was contemplating what he had said.
“Everyone knows that the white dragon has returned, the dragon maiden,” Olvio spoke with a grin. He looked around the large crowd that was continuing to form around me. “ The Dragon Maiden has returned!” he roared, shaking the very ground and the buildings.
Suddenly, a wild cheer erupted.
I felt a sudden chill that made me shiver up and down my spine.
“Dragon Maiden! Dragon Maiden!”
The ground rumbled.
“We will not falter!” Olivio spoke with vigor. The glamour of his scales glitters even brighter underneath the sun, giving him a holier feel.
Even I couldn’t be awed at my father. There was a powerful draw about him that could not be easily obtained. Nobody took a step towards him and instead gave him space.
On the other hand, the crowd surged forward. The crowds reached out to touch me.
I hesitantly stepped backward but stopped. I couldn’t get out from the sudden surge of the crowd.
“What-?” I raised my hand. I almost squashed a little girl that I finally froze.
In seconds, I could feel hundreds of hands touching my arm, legs, sides, and even my neck. Some of the children looked up at me with wide eyes as they glimmered with excitement.
I couldn’t help but lower my head downwards towards them. The group of children squealed, raising their hands over their heads. Eventually, my head rested not too far away from them, allowing them to touch my face continuously.
“It’s so smooth!” One of the girls shouted with glee. “It’s like looking at snow.”
“Snow? What’s that?” One of the younger boys asked quizzically.
“It’s white like the dragon maiden.”
“Ohhhhh, so it’s snowing.” The boy excitedly gazed. He rocked back and forth with his hand behind his back.
“No, they are like white powder falling from the sky and landing on the ground, covering it completely.”
The boy tilted his head, still not understanding what she was implying.
“Forget it; maybe one day, you’ll see it.”
Disappointed that the girl didn’t say anything, I could tell he wanted to know.
Without a second thought, I started to summon up magic around me.
People started to push back, completely confused by the sudden air change.
My chest started to glow blue; I could feel the air around me become dense with magic.
“Berry?” Olivio asked, confused about what I was doing.
With a powerful bark of energy, it slipped out of my mouth and straight into the sky. It left a large circle in the clouds.
The boy looked up, wondering what I was doing.
It didn’t take long for the sky to start filling with white cold snow.
“What?” The girl asked, appalled at what she was seeing. She reached up to her hand as a snowflake landed on her. It didn’t take long for the snowflake to disappear into the water. “It’s snowing.” She gasped.
The other children looked at me and back upward, reaching out to catch a snowflake of their
own. When they caught one, they couldn’t believe their eyes.
“It’s true; it’s snowing.”
“It’s a miracle!” The crowd yelled, cheering once again.
The little boy reached up, catching a snowflake in his hand. When he opened his hand, he was surprised at the small snowflake that melted away. He then looked towards me with a big goofy smile, “snow!”
I smirked, nodding.
It didn’t take long for the children to run around in excitement, trying to catch the snow in the air.
The miracle lasted for another ten minutes before it started to fade away, turning into light rain and clearing away for the sun to break through again.
Olivia gazed at me funny, but he shook his head in understanding and didn’t say anything further. Instead, he turned around and started to head towards the north side, away from the port.
I followed behind as the crowd moved out of our way, allowing me to pass through. But, unfortunately, they still followed close behind, gawking or gazing with admiration.
Slowly, but over time, I started to ignore them. Instead, I took this time to study the architecture that this city was built upon.
The streets were clean, making me wonder what their sewer system was like, especially because most of the cities I have seen or known didn’t have quite a good system, giving it a nasty smell the deeper I went into the city. But here, it wasn’t like that at all.
The shapes of the architecture reminded me close to the Earth’s European historic structure with a hint of ancient writings that decorated the very wall with scripts I wasn’t sure about. They glowed faintly with blue, telling me that there was magically embedded in them.
“Those ruins are our ancient language embedded with old magic,” Olivio spoke. He didn’t even seem to look at me to know what I was trying to figure out.
“I thought this place was more newish.”
“I have personally embedded them into the walls.”
“You did?” I was shocked to hear that from him.
“Yes, it took me quite a bit of time to get it set, but I think it’s worth the effort for my people.”
I was impressed. It would have taken him a large amount of time, especially the amount of magic needed to put into it.
“Do you still do the new buildings?”
“Of course. Nobody but me could do it.”
We continued to walk until we came upon a large building that reminded me of a roman worship room.
Upon arrival, Olivo shifted into his human form on landing.
I followed behind, shifting in midair as my feet touched the very ground.
“Get yourself comfortable. I’ll have a room ready for you. After that, we should have all the others arriving for the next three days.”
The maids and butlers seemed to appear out of thin air like a ghost. They came over, taking any extra accessories, jacket, or handing out hot towels to wipe our hands or face.
I took one to quickly wipe my face and hands and gave it back to them.
“Young mistress, my name is Joshua.” one of the butlers, who was a lot taller than me, spoke up with a gentle bow. There was similar elegance about them, just like Coco, Tart, and Moca, an unnatural air around them.
“They are similar to yours,” Olivio spoke. But, unfortunately, he didn’t even turn around to answer the question stuck in my head.
“Yes, all maids and butlers from the Divine dragon race have a natural talent for changing powerful monsters to serve under them. All of mine are as powerful as yours.” Olivio assured me.
“That is quite impressive.” I couldn’t help but smile at the similarities that we had.
“Wash up; I’ll see you for dinner.” Olivo left, leaving me behind with the butler who talked with me.
“This way, young mistress.” Butler Josuha spoke up. He waved his hand in front, asking me to follow.
I quietly trudged behind as I was directed toward my room.