The Burning Tower Burns, Part III

When I woke up, I was incredibly refreshed. I had the weirdest dream. I dreamed of a great dragon. It was like the sort you see depicted in kung fu movies; long and sinewy with catfish like mustaches and a furry mane. In my dream, he spoke to me. He told me that I was caught up in things that were bigger than they seemed and that he would make sure that Kee and me were okay because we didn’t deserve to be caught up in it all. In my dream, and still, upon waking up, I felt completely reassured and at peace.

I got up, dressed, and tried the mirror again. Kee picked up right away. “Dude, I have some stuff to tell you! When can we meet?”

“I promised Sals I wouldn’t leave till things were sorted.”

“Go check with her. I bet it’s all sorted now.”

“Uh. Okay. I’ll call you back then.’

“Do that.”

Shutting down the mirror I headed up to see Sals. She didn’t look like she’s slept all night. She gave me an evil glare. “What did you do?”

“Nothing you don’t know about, why?”

“Because as of about thirty minutes ago, everything has blown over. No one in The Rookery knows what happened. They got a call from the Council saying they were withdrawing their request to question you.”

“That’s good though, right?”

“Yeah, it’s good, but without knowing why it’s also a bit concerning. Still, we’ll just hope that the Counsel is really done and will stick to its own business and leave ours alone.”

“So I can go to see Kee now? It’s okay?”

“Sure kid. Take the day off. But be ready to get back to work tomorrow.”

“Thanks for everything Sals.”

“Get out of here,” she growled.

I got.

Kee and I agreed to meet at the Rooftops for All, one of our favorite restaurants. I needed some good food after all the activity of the past few days. I landed and saw Kee waiting at a table outside. I joined him.

“I ordered your parrot chow,” he joked. Fliers are generally vegan. It’s tough to fly if you’re loaded down with a stomach full of heavy foods. We eat less, and more often to keep our energy up. He likes to give me a hard time, but I knew he was vegan too.

“Thanks,” I said as I sat. I wasn’t even sure where to start, and he looked like he felt the same way, so I started. I told him the story of what had gone on with me since we’d last been able to talk. I saw his face go pale when I told him about the old man’s place.

“That’s a kind of crazy powerful that I can only hope to achieve in my life. He must be the one responsible for what happened at the tower.”

“Seems pretty likely, yeah.”

“So after we talked, I was taken to a room and I sat there for what felt like forever. It was probably closer to two hours, but man did I need to pee! Anyway, two dudes came in, you know the type, black suits, and ties, white shirts. Goons. They started asking me about you, and the package you delivered. I told them, like, yeah, I’d seen you come in, but I was across the room at my station, I wasn’t really close enough to see anything. It all looked like a normal drop-off to me. The sigils didn’t light, my magic sense didn’t tingle at all. Nothing.”

“Bet they didn’t like that.”

“No, they didn’t. I must’ve told the same story to them about fifty times. They just kept asking me over and over. I didn’t change my story though. I know what I saw, and what I didn’t. I guess I sort of threw K’estra under the bus though, and I feel bad about that. She was close enough to see more after all.”

“There was nothing to see. I mean, it was a box, wrapped in plain brown paper, like a grocery store bag, you know? There wasn’t any writing or anything. Nothing glowed or anything. It was just…normal.”

“I figured as much. If it were weird you’d have stopped to tell me about it on your way out and you didn’t. But seriously, about thirty seconds after you left, it all went to heck. There was a weird implosion feeling and then a strange glow outside the doors. The place went on lockdown, as I said. When they got tired of talking to me, they turned out the lights and left me in the room. It might have been scary if we hadn’t learned cantrip in like, first grade.” Kee let out a chuckle. “I got pretty tired, so I’m guessing it was late, so I sort of napped in the chair for a bit. The next thing I knew, they opened the door and told me I was free to go. Just like that. They didn’t look really happy about it, but that was it as far as I can tell. They didn’t even watch me go, they just went to the next door and let out Fred. I high-tailed it out of there and went to look outside. Dude, the building had this soft light green glow. It was licking up and down the whole building. It was a bit tough to see in the daylight, but we have got to check it out tonight.”

“You know it,” I said, giving him a fist bump. “It’s so weird that they let you go like that.”

“You don’t know the half of it. It gets even weirder. I had the weirdest dream. I dreamed of a great dragon. It was an Asian Imperial Lung. I know that ‘cause it had five fingers. He was the most beautiful shade of red with mustaches, and his mane was the most amazing shade of yellow with red at the tips. He told me that I was caught up in things that were bigger than they seemed and that he would make sure that you and I were safe because we didn’t deserve to be caught up in it all. Ever since then I have felt completely reassured and at peace.”

“Shut up! I had that same dream!”

Kee started shaking his head, “Dude, that is not right. No one should be that powerful! You don’t think…you don’t think it’s really a dragon, do you? I mean, they’re just stories, right? No one has seen one, right?”

“Fifty years ago, no one had seen a winged person either. Maybe it just took them a little longer to come back. They are supposed to have more magic in one little toe than all the mages in the world combined, right?” I responded.

“I dunno. It’s all just rumors and tall tales, or at least I thought it was. Do you really think we are being watched over by a dragon? What do you think Mr. Sendon was doing that pissed him off?”

“He didn’t exactly tell me. We had basically the same dream after all.”

“Fair. Fair. Are we going to leave it at that?”

“What do you think?”

“Ugh. Of course, we aren’t. That would be smart. What we really want to do is pester an all-powerful dragon until it decides it doesn’t like us.”

I laughed. Kee smiled, and we moved on to other subjects. Deep down though, I kind of hoped I might see that dragon again someday.

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