Friday, June 6, 2014

The Evolution of Dragons as told to Farloft by his Father

 “My father used to tell us stories about the origin of our species.” *cast eyes about over the group now assembled before him* “These are not just stories of my clan, but the history of Dragonology.”

*temples wings up high above head, ruffled them and then brings them down to fold them softly at his sides. Settles into storytelling mode - reclining with paws crossed*

“Many long years ago when rocks were soft and the world bubbled and ran with lava, from that primordial ooze the first dragons arose. They did not look like us. At the time, they were small, wingless creatures that would have fit in my paw.” *extends huge green paw to illustrate their diminutive size*

“But, you see, we all started somewhere and as time went on and millennia passed, our species diverged. There were many bugs in those early days. Flying bugs were numerous, so our ancestors developed wings to adapt to that ample food supply. My father told me there are still dragons in the deep forests of the southern regions that are so small you would mistake them for birds.” *smiles toothy dragon grins*

“Of course, there were dragons that chose to stay in the sea. I met one recently on my travels over the Red Sea. He was a very personable creature, though I could not understand a word he said. We shared some fish and I rested on a small island as he wallowed in the shallows of an inland pool.” *stops, rises and laps a drink from the pool in front of his cave*

 “Well now, where was I?” *stretches wings and launches up to favorite sunny spot on ledge above entrance to lair* “Oh yes, the dragons got their wings.” *grins and ruffles wings for effect*

“Of course, we are a very adaptable species or we would not still be here after so many millennia have passed. The dragons matured and evolved in order to fit their environment. Some grew huge and needed by necessity to consume larger quantities of food. Some became carnivorous, some leaned more toward herbivores. I, myself, prefer a mixed diet with a touch of the sweet. The humans in the land I come from have something called chocolate that is absolutely delightful.” *licks tip of nose with long pink tongue just thinking about the delicious, deep brown treat* 

“But I digress. Perhaps you are unaware of the different dragon types. From the age I was a hatchling my father taught us of the wondrous diversity of our species. Pick a color…Any color…” *nods wedged head at a member of the audience*


“Indeed there are blue dragons. It is said the ones in the far north ride the current of multicolored night skies and instead of breathing fire, their breath freezes.” *points at someone else* “Name another color.”


“At the temporal regions of our world there are purple dragons with lovely manes of gold, which my father told me eat only shellfish at low tide.”

*someone from the audience shouts* “Black with blue splotches or patches.”

“On an island to the east there is a clan of Black Mountain Dragons. They were originally all black, but then a blue riding the upper currents of the northern streams strayed into their territory. She fell in love and stayed with a black dragon of the clan. There are descendants to this day that have many telltale patches of blue.” *flicks tail from side to side feeling clever he remembers that little part of his father’s story. “And father told me that he actually met a bright blue dragon with golden stripes who loved eating flowers of almost any kind, but preferred the red ones. He said they were spicy.” *winks and grins*

“Dragons have taken on almost every imaginable color. There are red dragons in the hotter climates, golden and bronze dragons to the east, and orange dragons with lavender wing tips on the island of Mau. Why my mate is actually a chameleon dragon and can change color at will.” *flicks ears and licks the tip of nose* “Just imagine.” *clucks tongue and grins*

“Consider the vocalizations of our species. Many of us roar, but some hiss and others screech, and still others purr. The sea dragon I met blew bubbles between phrases and though I could not understand him, I believe those bubbles were part of his communication. I, myself, hum when I am happy and often break into song.”

“Dragons are all so diverse. I have straight horns, but some curl close to their heads.” *tosses head showing off horns for emphasis* “I have seen ones with wind spread horns and short nubby horns and even horns of various colors from white through brown to black and even more.”

*warming to his story* “The dragons of the WesternRidge have developed talons on their wing tips so they can climb those rocky mountain crags.” *swishes long tail from side to side and holds up for all to behold* 
“Some of us have spikes on our tails. One clan I know of which are Forest Night Dragons can use their tail for grasping branches. I have seen them do it. Some of us have defensive spikes down our backs and some only smooth scales or even hair, fins or feathers.”

 “In the land I come from we dragons are lucky enough to live peacefully with humans and gryphon alike. My father says that humans are a separate species, but in his opinion the gryphon were once dragons that evolved into a species all their own.”

 “Dragons and gryphon have wings, are diverse eaters, lay eggs, keep their young with them for many years to educate, and are two of only a handful of beings which can communicate successfully with humans. And, dragons and gryphon can successfully interbreed. A most telling factor to prove two species are directly related. I propose that dragons and gryphon are distant cousins.”

*squints golden eyes into the now lowering sun and yawns* “That is what my father told me when I was a hatchling and asked about our heritage. He was a very wise old dragon. I hope it helps clarify for you all why there are so many different kinds of dragon who populate our world.”

*thumps tail to get the attention of his audience* "Our next lesson will be the exploration of magical talent and its diversity among the dragon population." *yawns again and lays head down on paws* Until then, may the wind be ever under your wings.

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