The Smart Dragon
Copywrite Peter L. Barnes
A slightly Corny story, but then do Dragons get corns?
Trying to keep up with her classmates.
Thank goodness she had been allowed to join the class, although the teasing that she was a ‘bit of a dragon’ in on-line posts, was a bit hard to take. She wasn’t a bit of a dragon; she was a full-blown dragon.
The main reason that Georgiana had been accepted into the school in the first place was because she had been orphaned at an early age, too many Georges and ‘Game of Thrones’ fans having taken their toll.
Seating arrangements had been a bit of a problem, but fortunately as a ‘special needs child’ they had been given a grant for a metal desk, instead of the usual wooden units. Typing wasn’t a problem as she had her own computer and clawboard. The screen saver was just that, a steel shutter that dropped like a guillotine in front of the screen, if there was any hint of a fire.
She used the Dragonet for all her homework, and Tinder to try and connect to other dragons. Who on earth thought that Tinder was a good name for lonely dragons? And anyway, swiping left and right across her smart phone had ruined many a screen, she was thinking of going to court to force manufactures to improve them. Surely, it was against her dragon rights to have to spend so much money on new phones.
The school was having their annual Christmas play this year and the teacher, Mr Johnston, who acted as the producer, had tried to find a part for her, but this was proving very difficult despite Georgiana’s obvious acting skills. Apparently, there wasn’t a dragon in the bible and Mr Johnson really didn’t think her donkey impression was going down well, something about straw being a fire hazard.
“Life isn’t fair,” she said to Mr Johnson.
“Well I’m sorry but I didn’t write the story,” he said. “Maybe next year we’ll do George and the drag… What??” as Georgiana growled at him.
“And there’s no need to do dog impressions either, this is not a ‘dog in the manger’ story.”
“Sorry but I’m a bit frustrated at the moment.”
Georgiana was trying to concentrate on today’s maths class, she never understood the decimal system, having only 8 claws that had made counting so difficult. The practical IT teacher had come up with a solution but she was still trying to come to terms with the extra digits he had made with his 3D printer. It had a tendency to click like an abacus, at the most inappropriate times, much to the annoyance of the rest of the class.
As for school dinners, sticky toffee pudding and ice-cream were the most annoying, with the ice-cream melting and dripping out of the sides of her mouth, making her look like a drooling teenager. As for the pudding itself, her claws were definitely a mess for days afterwards.
Trying to fit into their world, she went to talk to the Girl Guide Leader, Mrs Poole, to see if she could join up.
“Well,” said Mrs. Poole. “Let’s see some of your skills, for instance can you tie some basic knots?” Handing her two lengths of rope.
“Oh, let me try, but I might be all thumbs, or claws in my case.” Georgiana fumbled with the rope but only succeeded them cutting them into smaller pieces.
“Oh dear, what about turning two sticks into a fire.”
Georgiana laid out a small pyramid of kindling, then shaved some wood into small slivers with her sharp claws, before rubbing two sticks together. “Oh look,” said Georgiana, pointing to a flying bird, then surreptitiously breathing a tiny flame into the slivers and getting the fire going. A pleasant smell of burning pine drifted around the hall.
“Well done, that’s lovely,” said the Guide Leader. “Now what about our gardening project?”
“What is that?
“We have a small allotment and need to grow some vegetables.”
“That should be easy,” said Georgiana, showing Mrs Poole her green claws.
“Oh yes I see what you mean, they should be perfect,” said Mrs Poole, not wanting to upset the dragon any further.
“We’ll need to sort out some sort of uniform for you.”
“Well we can hardy sew your badges onto such a scaly skin.”
“You could tattoo them on of course,” said Georgiana.
“You have tattoos?”
“Yes look!” she turned her shoulder.
“Oh! A human!”
“Well you lot have dragons, so I have humans.”
The first weekend away with the girl guides was a great success especially after the heavy rainfall the previous weeks. No dry spot to pitch their tents for miles around, before Georgiana warmed up the grass and evaporated the water in a cloud of steam. Collected firewood defied all stick spinning attempts but with a little help, the campfire was now burning brightly under the huge cooking pot. All her group were awarded with ‘training their dragon’ badges.
Georgiana settled into her new life, finally making some new friends amongst her classmates, although the sleepover was not a success. However, it did mean her friends’ mothers finally bought flame proof nightgowns.
Moving to university became more of a challenge although transport was never a problem. They found a quiet cave near the campus, where it was rumoured that Merlin had found refuge. Now it’s a little-known fact that Dragons tails are normally quite empty as it helps their balance when flying. However, when going into battle, it is standard practise to fill their tails with their gold hoard or certainly part of it. This can then be used to swing around on their opponent and the weight of gold is usually enough to knock them over and even kill them.
But a little know fact is that when their tail is cut off and stored in a deep cave, the flesh will decompose leaving all the gold and jewels to the new owner of the tail. Which is why people who cut the heads off the dragons lose all the accumulated riches. Silly humans. Georgiana had collected many tails over the years and now used them to fill her new cave, which is where the expression ‘lying on a bed of tails’ derives.
Aeronautical engineering became a passion and she was soon designing comfortable and efficient passenger planes. Her own version of the internal combustion engine being far more efficient that the jet engines of old, and of course much more environmentally friendly.
This of course turned her into a ‘D’ list celebrity, along with her success in writing human fantasy stories, so it was not surprising that she was invited to all the TV reality shows. She opted for ‘Strictly come Prancing’ where children were allowed to display their skills with their ponies. The producers finally had to ask her to resign from the show as her tail kept on knocking over the cameras.
After all her hard work and set backs she decided it was time to settle down and it was Tinder that finally came up with her perfect match.