Cordelia_Fitzgerald

United States

My dream is to be a bestselling author. I want to write YA fiction that is filled with magic, mythical beings, and much more! Most importantly, I want God to use my life and love of writing to share the good news of his mercy to everyone!

Message to Readers

This pretty much has no editing. So this is raw, raw material. All suggestions appreciated!

A Dragon and a Drastic Truth

November 4, 2019

        I stomped down the sidewalk, stiff as cardboard and mad as a hornet. Let’s just say twelve year old boys are an entirely separate species. The kind that has no hesitation before hurling water balloons at any innocent by passer. My wet hair slapped my face as I sharply turned the corner and continued down my flaming path of rage. 
    My clothes stuck to my skin and water dripped down my nose. I muttered angrily to myself as I stopped abruptly and jerked the mail out of the mailbox. I shivered as I marched up the stairs and had to fight the urge to slam the door.
    “Woah, there,” mom called from the kitchen, “What’s up?”
    I stalked into the kitchen and motioned to my soaking self.
    “Woah, Lyds,” she said, “You look like a human avalanche.”
    “Mom.”
    “Okay, I’ll stop with the white hair jokes.”
My hair was pure white. Not like 
albinism, though. My eyes are also kind of blue and purple and glimmery. I don't know, it's weird. My mom also has way too much fun making jokes. 
    I playfully rolled my eyes and smiled. My mom is magical. She can take my worst moods and twist them into grins in a matter of seconds. Her nice face and wavy red hair made me feel at home. 
    “Someone really needs to get a hold of Mrs. Ivanov and speak their mind,” I said, shivering in my damp clothes. “Her kids are the worst. I mean, who just throws water balloons at random people?”
    “Abram and Egor Ivanov, that’s who,” my mom sighed. She knew just as well as I that those two kids were menaces. If they weren’t pelting strangers with water balloons, they were setting squirrels loose in people’s garages or getting someone’s cat stuck up in a tree. One time, I caught them splatter painting the side of Mrs. Manderly’s house. In red. 
    “I can’t wait to be in out of Creekland Middle and into Collins Hill High,” I cheered. “I won’t have to suffer their annoying six gradeiness anymore!”
    “Okay, okay,” mom said, taking a sip of coffee. “That’s enough bashing the Ivanov twins, what’s in the mail?”
    I looked down at the stack of mail in my hands. I flipped through them and narrated each one.
    “Junk mail, junk mail, bills, Verizon, junk mail, postcard from Aunt Lori, my magazine and—giant sparkly letter.”
    My mom put her coffee down, “What?”
    “Giant sparkly letter addressed to…” I squinted at the flowery script, “me.”
    I couldn’t help but notice a touch of sadness in my mom’s face as she went around the counter to take a closer look.
    “Can I see it?”
    I nodded and handed it over. 
    My mom started to get misty eyed as she read the envelope over and over again.
    “Mom?” I asked, “What is it?”
    “Nothing, Lyds,” she said, putting on a half hearted smile, “Let’s just wait to open this one until your father gets home.”
    I sighed and let my shoulders droop. Wait to open the beautiful, sparkly, glittery envelope? I’ve got two words for you. Pure. Torture.
    I trudged upstairs and hopped in the shower, letting the cold, sticky feeling melt away. Once fresh and clean, I headed into my room and grabbed my favorite book, The Complete Guide to Constellations. I’ve probably read the whole thing fifty times. I love the stars. There is something about their glow the makes me happy. 
    I settled into my favorite reading spot—a hammock under a little skylight. I flip to my favorite star, Mira the Wonderful. Mira is my favorite because it isn’t the brightest star, you can’t even see it sometimes. But pops out every once in a while to show how great it is, that’s why it is called wonderful.
    I read through every fact, every description, for what must be the bazillionth time. I was pulled out of my starry stupor when I heard the front door close.
    “DAD!”
    I ran downstairs, eager to open my letter. As I skidded into the living room I could smell my favorite dinner cooking: green bean casserole, brown rice, and chicken crescent rolls. 
    My dad dropped his bags and threw open his arms. “There’s my little snowflake!” 
    I tackled my dad with a bear hug, just like I did every day this summer. I even attempted to squeeze him enough to make him beg for mercy—it never worked. 
    “Dad, I got a sparkly letter in the mail today!”
    My dad pulled away, “You did?”
    I frowned. He had the same deflated sounding voice my mom did earlier. Seriously, what was the deal with that letter?
    “She sure did,” mom said, poking her head out of the kitchen.
    “Oh,” my dad said, forcing a smile, “That’s great!”
    I got the feeling that they didn’t think it was so great. 
    My parents just sat there, not saying anything, so I decided to move things along.
    “Soooo, can I open the letter now?”
    My mom fumbled around the kitchen for a second before coming out with the sparkly letter. I ran and grabbed the letter and ushered everyone to the couches. I looked at the letter one last time before ripping it open. The envelope was a pale shade of lavender with silver, purple and blue sparkles. I slowly lifted the seal and pulled a lavender parchment from inside. I squinted to read the loopy writing:

                    Congratulations on your acceptance into Asterope Academy: School for Guardians in Training

    You have been accepted into Asterope Academy: School for Guardians in Training. You are one of the select few chosen to train to be a Guardian of Asterope. Enclosed in this envelope is a document with all the information you need. Please read all the information before signing this application. Once the application is filled out, please follow the sending instructions listed below.

    “What is this?” I asked. “Is it one of those fun fantasy letters that you can buy? Like for a book series? That is super nice of you guys, but I’ve never read anything about Asterope.”
    Mom and dad just stared at their laps, so I pulled out the info sheet and kept reading…

                                        Asterope Academy: Purpose, Expectations, and Packing List

            The purpose of Asterope Academy is to train students in espionage, combat, and dragon compatibility.

    I stopped reading. It was cute, but kind of disappointing. I thought it was some invitation to have a private tour of Buckingham Palace or the Biltmore. Not some faux fantasy school acceptance letter. Bummer.
    “What does the packing list say?” mom asked.
    “What?” Why does it matter?
    “Can I see the packing list Lydia?”
    I passed the info paper to my mom.
    “Hey, Snowflake,” dad said, “can I see that application?”
    I handed my dad the other paper. He skimmed over it and sighed.
    “They don’t give you a lot of time to decide,” he said. “We have to send it in by tomorrow. She would leave the day after she sent it.”
    “She doesn’t have to pack much,” mom told him. “Just personal belongings. Apparently they provide all supplies needed. Including clothing.”
    Are they serious?
    “Apparently you have to burn the application to send it,” dad said.
    Okay, enough.
    “What are you guys talking about?” I laughed. “You sound like you’re serious. But, I know your not. As we all know, I am going to Collins Hill High. Simple and, most of all, real.”
    My mom stood up and sighed. “Lydia, you know you’re adopted, right?”
    “Yeah. I showed up on a stormy night in a wicker basket with a note. Freakishly theatrical.”
    “All true,” she said, “Did I ever tell you what the note said?”
    I suddenly felt squirmy. “No.”
    My mom pulled a slightly crumpled note from her pocket and started to read it out loud:
    “Please take care of Lydia Grace. Keep her safe, raise her normally. When she is of age, she must go to Asterope. The letter will come. Signed ‘KA’.”
    “Raise her normally?” I shook my head. “Could my parents not do that themselves?”
    “Apparently not,” mom said. 
    “Soooo,” I said slowly, “This letter is an actual application to an actual school?”
    “You got it, Snowflake,” dad smiled. “Do you want to go?”
    I blinked. 
    Go to a weird school that I’ve never heard of? The school that whoever left me on a doorstep intended for me to go to?
    I looked at my parents.
    There is no way. I’ll just play along!
    “Yeah!” I piped. “Of course I’ll go!”
    We “celebrated” with my favorite supper and I got to work.
    I filled out the application answering weird questions like “What is your favorite color scheme?” Or “Do you prefer day, noon, evening, or night?” One question even asked what I was looking for in a dragon. I put that a dragon should be strong and capable, but stealthy and graceful. A little ferociousness wouldn’t hurt. Neither would a fun-loving personality and silly side. 
    I filled out the front and back page of application and took it down stairs.
    “Okay, how do you send it?”
    My dad looked up from his phone. “It says at the bottom to fold it into a square and stick a match through the center.”
    My parents and I went through the funny process and I decided to turn in.
    “Don’t forget to pack your personal belongings,” mom called after me, “You won’t need to pack clothes. Wait, let me help you!”
    My mom followed me up the stairs and started ordering me to pack things.
    “Make sure you pack your own pillow with your favorite pillowcase,” she said, “And, good heavens, don’t forget Ginger.”
    Ginger is a unicorn stuffed animal I sleep with. She’s actually pretty. White with golden hooves and a horn. A soft pink mane and little pink and blue roses around the horn and tail. 
    Mom made me pack mini photo album, a first aid kit, a bag of gummy worms, my favorite constellations book, and a t-shirt of hers. Just in case I get homesick.
    It wasn’t much. It all fit in a knapsack. I kept Ginger and my pillow with me for sleeping. Mom supervised as I laid out my outfit and kissed me goodnight. She looked teary eyed as she left the room. 
    I stretched out on my bed.
    “My parents are crazy.”
“Get dressed. We have to get to the battlefield.”
    I squinted into the light. My mother was hanging over me. Dressed and ready to go.
    “Why?” I asked, rubbing the grogginess out of my eyes.
    “You have to go to school.”
    Wait.
    I sat up real quick.
    “You guys are still playing that game?”
    Mom puckered her eyebrows. “What game?”
    “The game where your pretending that I’m going to a dragon fairy school.”
    Mom started to say something, but changed her mind. “Just get dressed and grab your things.”
    I groaned and rolled out of the bed. My mom walked off to finish getting things together.
    “Good heavens, don’t forget Ginger,” she called.
    I rolled my eyes. This was getting ridiculous.
    Nonetheless, an order is an order. So, after I got dressed, I stuffed Ginger in my pillow and slung my knapsack over my shoulder. 
    I trudged down the stairs and my parents ushered me into the car. I didn’t fight it. I didn’t even ask about skipping breakfast. I just sat, arms folded, in the backseat. 
    “Are you excited, kiddo?” my dad asked from the driver seat.
    “Yeah.” I didn’t bother to put enthusiasm in my voice.
    “Are you sure?” 
    To make him happy, I pepped it up. “You know it!”
    He seemed to feel better after that.
    “I’m going to miss you darling,” mom said. “At least your real school will be starting in two weeks, so you aren’t missing out on too much summer.”
               “And you get to see a battlefield,” my dad added.
    “Question,” I said, “How do you know where to go? It didn’t say it on the sheets.”
    “There was a note on our bed,” mom said, shuddering a little bit. “How did they even get it there?”
    I interrupted before dad could answer. “What battlefield are we going to?”
    “Kennesaw.”
    My dad pulled into a Burger King, and thank goodness he did. Hunger pains were starting to kick in. We went through the line and got three bacon, egg and cheese croissandwiches. I even got to get a soda since it was such a “special occasion.” Yes, a soda for breakfast. 
    We played our usual road games. Twenty questions and the license plate game. I never win twenty questions. My mom reads so many mystery books, she knows all the right questions and roasts my dad and me. But I’m the license plate champion. My eyesight is incredible, so I destroy my parents in that game. At long last, we pulled into the battlefield parking lot. We hiked to an empty clearing. It wasn’t very crowded at Kennesaw battlefield since there was a one hundred percent chance of rain…now. I looked up to the sky. It was cloudless.
    “Okay, I think here is the right spot.”
    My mom stopped and stared at the sky. 
    I was getting annoyed. Why weren’t we touring the museum and battlefield? What was this act for? Are they getting paid to mess with me?
    My mom turned around and hugged me. “I’m going to miss you so much.” She sounded really choked up. 
    My dad joined the hug and sniffled. “Do you have your phone?”
    “Yes.”
    “And the charger?”
    “Yes.
    “And you’ll call us once you get there?”
    “GET WHERE?”
    My dad was cut off by enormous gust of wind. My mom grabbed my dad and me roughly by the wrist and pulled us back. I looked up to see a massive animal touchdown on the grass in front of me.
    “IS THAT A DRAGON?” I screamed.
    My mom nodded, but she looked kind of angry. “Yes. Get your things.” Then she turned to my dad. “They said nothing in the note about transport by dragon! What are they thinking? HOW IS THIS SAFE.”
    “Bridgette, I’m sure it’s fine.” Dad tried to comfort mom.
    “IS IT?”
    I blinked. 
    Is this real?
    There was a gigantic dragon in front of me. And a man was sliding down the wing. The dragon looked at me. I backed away.
    “Do dragons eat people?” I looked behind me, contemplating running away.
    “Of course not! That’s ridiculous.” 
    I jumped. A man wearing a dark green jerkin and boots stopped in front of me and my parents. He looked like he jumped straight out of a medieval movie. I cocked my head, but he still seemed current, even futuristic. While I tried to figure out what made the outfit so weird, my parents must have wrapped up some conversation with the man because they showered me with hugs and kisses. 
    “Alright, Lydia,” the man said, “let’s go meet my dragon, then we need to scram. We can’t keep the people away forever.”
    Who’s we?
    “Meet it?” I asked.
    “Yes. And thank you Mr. and Mrs. Barry for trusting Debbie.”
    “Debbie?” I asked, “Your dragon’s name is Debbie?”
    I stared at the giant white and gray dragon. She looked at me again, her eyes were intent, like she wanted to say something. She blinked and looked away.
    “Raaaar!
    I whimpered.
    “Yeah, yeah,” the man called.
    My parents and I said our final goodbyes and the man lead me toward twenty foot dragon of certain doom.
    “Debbie, this is Lydia,” the man said, “Lydia, Debbie.”
    Debbie grunted.
    “Oh yeah.” The man stuck out his hand. “I’m Mace, pleasure to meet you.”
    I reluctantly shook his hand.
    Mace shimmied up onto Debbie and stuck out his hand. “Okay, climb on. You can sit in the front so you can hold on.”
    In a daze, I grasped his hand and let him pull me up. I sat down on Debbie’s neck and held on tight. Mace did something of whistle screech thing and Debbie flapped her enormous wings. I screamed at the top of my lungs as we vaulted into the sky. We blasted forward going higher all the time. Up and up and up. I think that’s when it hit me.
    I shook my head and looked around. I was on a dragon, in the air, parents gone, with a stranger.
    “WHAT AM I DOING?”
    “What’s wrong?” Mace asked.
    “Um, the fact that I am so high off the ground that I can barely make out roads!”
    “Oh, we aren’t that high,” Mace said, “only about thirty-five thousand feet up. We’ve got another five hundred feet to go.”
    “What?” I started freaking out, “How will I breath? What if I fall?” I pointed to Mace, “You have a death wish.”
    Mace just laughed. “First of all, you are not human. You are drakish. That means you can breath effortlessly at any altitude. It also means that you can communicate with dragons. As for falling, if you concentrate hard enough, you can make yourself slow down. So if you fall off you dragon, which is a very rare occurrence, then you won’t die.”
    There I was, clinging to a dragon, too shocked to cry. Not to mention I was just informed that I wasn’t human, could talk to dragons, could make myself not plummet, and that I had one heck of a set of lungs. I sat there, feeling the cold, but not shivering. I tried to make sense of everything that was happening, but couldn’t. I was stuck on a dragon in the sky, questioning life. What a combo. 
    It took hours, or maybe it was minutes, but we finally touched down on something solid. I slowly opened one eye, and then the other. There was ground down there. Thank goodness. Mace made another whistle-screech and Debbie lowered one wing. Mace helped me walk down Debbie’s back.
    “Now slide down.”
    It was kind of a  long way down, like fifteen feet.
    “Um, why don’t you go first?”
    “Sit down.”
    I sat down.
    “Now go.”
    That command I didn’t obey.
    Mace sighed, “On the count of three. One. Two—”
    “AAAAAH.”
    Mace had shoved me from behind, before he even got to three. I rocketed down Debbie’s wing. I flailed desperately for something to grasp onto, but there was nothing. I launched off the end of Debbie’s wing and landed roughly on my rump.
    “Ouch.”
    There was the sound of more sliding and Mace vaulted off of Debbie and landed perfectly beside me. 
    Show off.
    “And this is Nic.”
    I froze and looked up. A boy stood there. He looked fifteen or sixteenish. He also looked like he was trying very hard not to laugh.
    I scrambled to my feet and stared at the ground. 
    “Hey little bro,” Mace said.
    “Big bro.”
    They did a little handshake. I just watched through my hair. 
    “Nic’s going to take you to the school and show you around.”e
    I just nodded.
    “See you later, Lydia!” Mace called, hopping back onto Debbie. Debbie flapped her wings sending out a burst of air that made my hair go wild. I wasn’t looking forward to the great hairbrush war that was surely awaiting me that night.
    “So, Lydia,” Nic said, “Raised by humans?”
    “Yes.”
    “Cool,” he said. He seemed to hesitate for a minute before saying, “Nobody lands it their first try.”
    “What?”
    “Sliding down a dragon’s wing. My first try, I went flying into a tree.”
    Okay, that was funny. 
    “Let’s go,” Nic said, “There is a lot to show.” He motioned towards the biggest tree I have ever seen in my life.
This pretty much has no editing. So this is raw, raw material. All suggestions appreciated!

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2 Comments
  • aditi

    Wow! I love the plot- and I also love dragons so I definitely applaud you on this!
    I think that this has a great starting point because you emphasized the revelation that Lydia is magical just enough! great job :)))


    almost 2 years ago
  • Charisse Marison

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE this story! You create a whole new world with dragons and magic and AHHH! This was SO good! I mean, Lydia sounds like a normal girl, but then she finds out she's MAGICAL! That really surprised me! I felt like you had amazing character development and I really liked all the exposition about Lydia's family. Great work!!!


    almost 2 years ago