A One-Sided Deal

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Gunnar grinned then shouted "Reptile! Get over here!" I followed FireFang as we crawled closer to Gunnar. Gunnar held up a whip and pointed it at FireFang's tail then at the amber cocoon. FireFang lifted his tail and lit it on fire then plunged it into the amber which started melting. Both Razorwhips burst out of the amber and growled. The two girls fell to the ground.

"Chain 'em!" Gunnar commanded. Eight hunters stepped forwards. They muzzled the two dragons, chained their wings and clamped down their long, spiky tails. "Hey! What are you doing?" Autumn yelled. "Relax. As long as you two help me, your little pets will remain unharmed" Gunnar said. "Then why chain them?" The older girl asked. "Until you, and them, settle down it's better not to take any risks" Gunnar explained. "Pile of yak dung" the girl grumbled under her breath. Luckily for her, Gunnar didn't hear. "This way, if you please" Gunnar said as he started walking towards his tent. Autumn gave the other girl an unsure look. "It's okay, don't worry..." the girl reassured her. I gave FireFang a look that asked if we were going to follow them. FireFang nodded and we headed after them, but kept some distance.

Gunnar reached his tent and his second in command held open the flap. Gunnar stepped aside and held out a hand then said, "ladies first." The two girls walked inside the tent. "Get a couple of guards up here in case they try anything" Gunnar told his second in command. "Yes sir" he replied as he walked away. Gunnar turned and disappeared behind the flap of the tent. I looked up at FireFang and asked "what now?" "Well I guess he won't mind if we come inside..." FireFang said. I could tell he was curious.

FireFang lifted the flap with his snout and stuck his head inside the tent. "Aaaah! I-it's the Singetail!" Autumn said nervously. The other girl stepped in front of Autumn as if to shield her. Autumn whimpered nervously. I remembered how Autumn had been carried off by this very Singetail, she must be terrified of those dragons, probably as much as I hated them. "Easy girls. This scaled reptile belongs to me" Gunnar announced. "It what?!" The girl in front of Autumn asked. "You have your dragons, I have mine" Gunnar replied. "That dragon is yours?" Autumn asked with confusion. "How many times do I have to tell you? Yes, it's mine!" Gunnar snapped. I let out a low hiss. Gunnar fully opened the tent flap, revealing both me and FireFang. Both girls gasped. "Is that one yours too?" Autumn asked. "Yes" Gunnar said with a proud smirk. I growled at him. "Yes, it is, but..." Gunnar muttered quietly as he glared at me. "But?" The other girl questioned. "Listen, every Singetail on this island belongs to me. The pack is run by my reptile over here, who is run by me" Gunnar explained as he laid a hand on FireFang.

"Why do you need these Singetails? And why us?" Autumn asked. "Well, not only do Singetails blast fearsome fireballs from their mouth, but they can shoot flames from gills in their belly and, of course, their tails. They can even keep their tails aflame with a fireball at the end. They have a 360° vision and no blind spot. Their double wings make them fast, steady and capable flyers, and their wide bodies would make them easy to ride. Which is were you two come in. You can ride those Razorwhips of yours. I have wanted to get these beasts up in the air for a long time, but they won't let me ride them yet. So I need you to teach me" Gunnar said. "Why do you want to ride them?" The other girl asked. "To capture more dragons of course! And once I can ride them, so can my dragon hunters" Gunnar said with an evil grin. "And what if we don't want to help you?" Autumn asked. "I'm afraid you have no choice really" Gunnar smirked. He pointed the whip at FireFang who boiled up a fireball in his mouth. Both girls exchanged looks. "So, do we have a deal?" Gunnar asked. "Seems a little one sided..." Autumn muttered. "Yes or no?!" Gunnar asked and I could tell he was getting impatient. "A one sided deal it is. When can we start?" The older girl asked. "We can start now, by giving me your names" Gunnar said as he lowered the whip and FireFang swallowed his fireball. "I'm Runa" the stranger girl said. "And I'm Autumn" Autumn said. "Perfect! My name is Gunnar, but that's Sir to you. Now then, let's get going" Gunnar said.

Gunnar walked out of the tent and FireFang stuck by his side. I however, waited for Autumn and this Runa girl. Autumn tensed and she stopped in front of me. "Don't worry, she won't hurt you. Remember what I taught you about dragons?" Runa said softly. I sat down and tilted my head slightly. "Okay, okay" Autumn whispered. Autumn slowly tiptoed towards me and held her hand up in front of my face. In pure instinctual reaction, which I had no control over, I pressed my snout against her hand. A flood of warm energy rushed throughout me and when she moved her hand away my snout tingled. I wriggled my nose and purred softly. "See? That was great!" Runa smiled. Runa held out a flat hand which I sniffed. "Hurry up! We don't have all day!" Gunnar called from up ahead. I growled at him to which both girls laughed. We continued walking and I quickly realised where we were headed, the arena.

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