Well met, Flavorful Specks!
It is time once again for a bit of knowledge given freely by your favorite mighty dragon—me! Grendel, the All-Seeing Eye! In the weeks since we started sending out these knowledge-rich scrolls, Geldrin, me, and the harpies have all been inundated with questions from all over this material plane. Seems like you folks are getting wise to the fact that asking an unbelievably intelligent and powerful being such as myself for advice is a rather rewarding endeavor…
In order to show my benevolence, this entire chapter of Storytime with Grendel will be dedicated to answering as many of your burning questions as I can fit on this tiny parchment. So, without further ado, let’s get to those questions!
A question like this should have a very straightforward answer, but after having eaten a handful of chronocrystals and no fewer than eleven time wizards, I’m no longer exactly sure myself—at least not in the usual metric of measuring age. I would assume I am at least 2,381 summers, but you can easily add or subtract nearly 700 years to the front or backside of that number and still be correct.
Smaug, Balerion the Dread, or Spyro? Dan Peacock, author of "The Tidal Lock" found in Etherea Magazine #16
Though Smaug’s treasure hoard was quite impressive, the means in which he met his demise is pathetic, to say the least. No self-respecting dragon would allow themselves to be slain by a single arrow. Pathetic, I say!
Balerion was physically remarkable, but once a dragon gets that gargantuan, it becomes impossible for them to squeeze themselves into the nooks and crannies where the best treasures are often kept. Not only that, but the larger they let themselves grow, the more creatures they must eat to feel satisfied, thus the less enjoyable each meal becomes. I keep myself a middling size in order to make every meal a treat!
Spyro is a nice little purple dragon with a pension for saving others of his kind. He’s loyal enough that if I somehow was petrified into a statue-like state (though this would never happen), I’m sure he’d find a way to save me. On the other claw, if he ever tried to challenge me, he’s tiny enough that I could just squish him.
Thus, to answer your inquiry, I choose Spyro.
I, myself, have a fire breath as hot as any sun, capable of melting literally every substance on this mortal coil. I have, however, experimented with a variety of alchemical potions and components, all of which gave me a temporary deviation from my usual incendiary emanations. One frosty fruit let me try out icy breath for a bit, while a caustic tomato-based concoction gave me devastating acidic-spittle (though Geldrin says it might have been a very bad case of heartburn. I disagree.).
None of them compared to my normal inferno, though I will say the bubbling breath caused by a carbonated swamp drink given to me by a semi-friendly ogre was surprisingly entertaining.
Not at all. We’re much, much more terrifying in real life. A picture can’t burn you, season you, and eat you, can it, Nick?
Is there any proof that you’re an idiot?
There may be hundreds if not thousands of different types, if you count every little difference between us. Many so-called “Draconic Scholars” have come together in their little meetings and agreed to classify us in no fewer than fifteen categories, be they reds, greens, golds, and so forth.
An even further generalization of us splits into just three categories, them being chromatic, metallic, and gem dragons, but I say if you’re going to paint with such a broad brush, you may as well use only one color and call us “big ol’ flying scaley things.” If you’re not intelligent enough to see the difference between a blue-horned Kibbwhipper and an acid-spitting Devourinoll, then you’re better off letting either one have you for a quick snack.
(If you’re wondering which type of dragon yours truly is, I am a fantastic anomaly of draconic uniqueness. I don’t myself even have a type, so stick that in your mouth and chew it!)
Well supposedly it’s whichever one of us can best any rivals in battle and claim the ancient Dragon Orb of Aargrintxnon, but in actuality, it’s (no surprise) me. I just haven’t gotten around to claiming the orb. I could if I wanted to. I just don’t feel like it right now. Maybe next year.
How do you motivate yourself to keep going when it all seems miserable and hopeless? Melrose Dowdy, artist and author of the upcoming story "Death in the Highlands" June 2023
Well, my gloomy friend, I never find any situation to be miserable OR hopeless. I can overcome any and all challenges with little effort because I stand outside time and its heavy machinations.
As for a mortal like yourself, I simply can give this advice: It all depends on which situation you find yourself in that seems so dire. Are you attempting to best a dragon in single combat? In that event, things ARE hopeless and I recommend you simply give up and let your well-seasoned self be devoured.
Otherwise, in nearly every other aspect of your short lives, I’ve noticed a surprising, albeit somewhat foolish resiliency in mortals. From whence they draw it, I know not. I suppose if you have a short life, you tend to make the best of it when you can.
“There’s always something worth fighting for” is a phrase I’ve heard before from a band of humans who were attempting to drive me from their pillaged keep. They were wrong in that situation, of course, but again, it’s because they were up against me. If it’s not me, then I say give it your best. No sense in giving up when you know not the future and your foe is not immortal.
Cats are delicious. A very good flavor similar to vanilla and caramel (depending on the breed). You do have to eat a bunch of them to get a good mouthful, though. Fortunately, most peasants who have cats keep a dozen or more of them so it’s easy to find a full litter of the little felines at once!
Dogs are tasty, but far too often they’ve recently rolled in something foul and must be cleaned before consumption or else you risk eating some doodle with your poodle. Dogs taste like a wide variety of flavors, so if you get a good one it’s really good, but if you get a bad one it’s mediocre.
Editor’s note: Geldrin here. So sorry about this last one. I tried to convince Grendel to answer the question in the traditional way, but he insisted the answer WAS traditional…
Well, that’s all the questions we have room for! Send me more, and whenever I am feeling generous, I may spare the time to answer. Until next time, continue seasoning yourselves with knowledge and spice!