This one is a.More cheerful (at least to me) and b.In two parts so I combined them. Enjoy!
I have an agreement with the humans of the land that surround my solstice. They just don’t know it. I use a little magic to keep their crops growing, their rain falling, and their weevils nonexistent in the summer, and I keep their hearth fires warm in the winter. And as my due I only take the dying ones.
It is the curse of dragons to have to eat humans, but it stopped bothering me a long time ago. I keep many more of them from dying than I take, and I always give them two days to insure that I made no mistake, if they don’t improve I eat them quickly, and try to not let them suffer. But if they do seem to be getting better I wipe their memories of me, or, for the more strong minded, turn myself into something else in their minds, a healing creature or something, as long as they don’t decide that the thing that they saw was a monster and bring attackers. I could slay a small group easily, but if they could manage to muster an army I might have a problem.
I see no heartlessness to it, they do the same with the animals that they raise, although they treat them worse. There are others of my kind who take the plumpest ones, the most lean, or the true fools, most of which must have had their eggs dropped, a lot, who take only maidens or princesses. There are progressively fewer dragons.
War is a good time for me; I can go to the abandoned battlefields and take the dying. We cannot eat those already dead, whoever cursed dragons, for it was a curse from long ago, either truly disliked us or truly disliked the villagers near us.
Often living people on the side of those who lost that battle will ask for death, so I give it to them. I do not care if it interferes with human politics, for I have little interest in the matter. But I do know that they do not allow females into the ranks of warriors. So, now that I have told you my past, and what I am, I would like to know what you are doing in the army, little warrior. You interest me.
So dragons are more than simply fables and stories told to small children. I digress. I was born pottage poor, but fairly pretty. I was taught to hunt by my older brother, so that I could help provide once he left to seek his fortune.
I simply helped our family survive and might have done little else with my life if some pig of a lord hadn’t seen me and decided that “a lady of such stunning beauty mustn’t live as some poor wench” my parents arranged my marriage to him, so I left to do anything else.
I was quite good with a bow and knew how to not cut my head off with a sword so I decided to become a knight. I didn’t quite achieve that, but it’s probably better. War was declared while I was headed to the city, and by the time I got there they would sign just about anyone up as a soldier. So I did that, as a knight more people would have seen me over a progression of years for training, so the army was more safe. Just take the bunk in the corner and don’t make trouble.
We had a bit of training and marched out, some dreaming of glory, and some simply hoping to stay alive. I’m not quite sure which I was. We lost half the company in the first battle. Good people simply trying to protect their homes, although I found their views on women a bit bothersome.
I got through the next few battles with more luck than skill. Last one I was in my shield buckled, so I ended up taking one from one of the dead, or at least I think he was dead. I was actually managing to do pretty well until a man who I swear must have had wolf blood in his ancestry got a good hit in. I managed to kill him, but I was left for dead. Last thing I remember was trying to figure out what kind of bird that flying thing was because it was quite large and getting larger. At which point I suppose I blacked out. And woke up here.
You’re not going to eat me are you? I probably taste all stringy. Although if you do plan to wipe my memory can I request that you don’t. I’m not going to go talking about the dragon that I saw, not that anyone would believe me anyway, and I want to be able to remember this. And laugh a little bit when I hear people telling tales of dragons.