Entering Camena Draconis

(c) Nin Harris 1997–

From the Journals of the Guardian :

If you have crossed here over Alta Exsilii, you would have seen the reddish glow hovering over the center of this island. You would have seen dark shapes rising from that livid light and shapes flying majestically towards it. This is because the Volcano named Camena Draconis is a meeting place for all the dragons of this world and all adjoining ones. If you are brave(or foolhardy) enough to desire entrance into the Volcano and make friends with the dragons, please take necessary precautions. Any mortal fool enough to enter without the protection of a faerie or draconian spell would be charred to a crisp – I do so dislike the smell of burned human flesh. Just ask any of the salamanders in any fireplace and they will give you the directions to the appropriate dragon or faerie magician.

Please ask no one else other than myself, the dragons or the salamanders. The salamanders are fairly reliable because they earn a commission for each customer they send to Feroch, the powerful dragon magician. It used to be that you could ask any fae the way, but they have been angered by some of the mortals who have visited Yrejveree -especially since the coming of the Assassin – and are wont to play unkind tricks on any unsuspecting mortals.

Now, after you have entered the Volcano, you will find yourself on one of a series of ledges of dark rock connected to each other by precarious and winding walkways suspended over huge lakes of lava where groups of frolicking dragons are happily splashing about. Dragons love to take lava baths (it gives their scales a fine glitter) and naturally they tend to overdo things. The last meeting place they had on the island of Krakatoa exploded because forty dragons had an over-boisterous game of lava-polo within its depths. It is not easy being the Guardian of a faerie isle, and it is even less so when there has a huge Volcano at the heart of it. You cannot imagine the sleepless nights I have suffered!

We have dragons flying to Yrejveree every day. Not a single day passes without a shadow falling over my Keep, with a majestic roar shaking the skies, and with trees rustling in the breeze caused by flapping wings. But those are the dragons who live within reach of the mystical pathways that lead into this faerie isle. They love to hang out with their friends at the Volcano, engage in mock battles and the various contests that are really a sort of`one-upmanship’ ritual among dragons. Dragons are notoriously vain creatures, as any island-dweller will tell you.

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This is the reason for one of my major headaches. The Festival of Songs is due to take place a few days from now. This is when hoardes of dragons from the remotest corners of the universe will congregate to take part in the famed Festival’s `Longest’ and `Most Fearsome’ category. I really do not know what spell goes into their songs, but the echoes made from this festival resounds through the Isle throughout the year. You may be walking along a lone pathway in agreeable silence, or with a faerie band flying about your head when you turn a corner, enter some remote vale, then BOOM! An echo hits you! Do not misunderstand me, for I love dragons – but really! I have nightmares of Yrejveree exploding around my ears some day under the pressure of a million posturing dragons!

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