The River Between Heaven and Hell (Part Two)

dark water

The Eighteenth Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

Yao Jin stood on the rocky shore of a nameless island on the River Styx facing the demon. Her sword Demonslayer was drawn and at the ready, and she was desperate to see if the blade would live up to its name.

Demonslayer was a gift from her Grandfather Xun Qin, the most powerful sorcerer in the East for the past twenty generations, and he said it was the sister sword of Stormbringer the soul drinker, both having been forged in the furnaces of Arioch, Lord of Chaos and Duke of Hell.

As the young magician raised her blade, she could feel it vibrate in her hands and it moaned and wailed like a wraith in torment.

“Let me pass demon or I’ll send you back to Hell in pieces!”

Continue reading

The River Between Heaven and Hell (Part One)

styx

From the 2012 film “Wrath of the Titans”

The Seventeenth Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

“My name is Yao Jin and I need to speak to your grandson. It is an urgent manner.”

The Chinese woman at the door spoke English formally, like someone who had learned it from a textbook, but her tone, facial expression, and body language told Grandpa she was terrified and desperate. On top of all that, she was dressed in a simple but full length cloak, which was odd clothing for a warm summer afternoon.

“Well of course you can come in, but why do you need to speak to my grandson?”

Continue reading

The Invisibles

alley

From the film “Red Fog” (2013)

The Thirteenth Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

It was one of those rare days when Buddy was at home watching eight-year-old Landon and his 20-month-old sister Dani while everyone else was out.

Grandpa, Dad, and Dad’s cousin Nate went out for lunch and to see a movie, while the kids stayed at home in the Ambrosial Dragon’s care.

Buddy wasn’t much larger than the average collie, but although a dragon, his intelligence and maturity was equivalent to an adult human’s. In fact, given his other worldly nature, there was no estimating just exactly how intelligent Buddy was, or for that matter, how old he was.

Buddy had hopped up onto Grandpa’s “reading chair”. Landon came out of the bathroom after brushing his teeth.

“Hey, where’s Dani?” The last Landon knew, she’d been sitting in the living room looking at her books, but now only Buddy was there.

Continue reading

Curse of the Rising Mummy

mummy ct scan

from Llvescience.com

The Eleventh Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

It had been almost a week since Landon had first encountered The Mysterious Mummy, and in spite of the initial scare he had gotten, the eight-year-old’s visit to Cairo seemed more or less ordinary.

Okay, it wasn’t ordinary. He was visiting a foreign country for the first time in his life, and he was playing with Dr. Salib’s grandchildren Adjo, a nine-year-old boy, and Nuri, a seven-and-a-half-year-old girl.

They spoke only broken English, and Landon couldn’t speak Arabic at all, but they managed to communicate and have fun playing with each other.

They couldn’t play right now, though. They were at The Egyptian Archeological Institute in Cairo. Grandpa’s friend Dr. Salib was the Director of Archeology at the Institute. Adjo and Nuri were really proud of their Jaddi or Grandpa. He was so important. Landon started feeling a little jealous because his Grandpa didn’t have such a big, important job like that.

Maybe the kids couldn’t run around and play, but today was still an exciting day. Three days ago, the lid of the sarcophagus was removed, and today, Landon would get to see the Mummy!

Continue reading

The Mysterious Mummy

mummy

Stephen Voss – Smithsonian Magazine

The Tenth Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

Landon had been bored and sleepy until the plane began its final descent toward Cairo International Airport. Then his face was glued to the window taking in every detail of a city that was over a thousand years old. Grandpa was sitting next to him, enjoying his eight-year-old grandson’s enthusiasm.

They had planned this vacation for months, ever since Grandpa read Landon the “Goosebumps” book Return of the Mummy by R.L. Stine. Grandpa actually had a friend in Egypt named Issa Salib who was an archaeologist, a person who studies history by digging at ancient sites like the pyramids, examining what they find…

…like mummies.

Continue reading

The Adversary

ninja

Image: pngall.com

The Ninth Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

It was very early in the morning and the first day back at school after the Christmas break for seven-year-old Landon. Buddy, the Ambrosial Dragon who had become part of the family nearly five months ago, was sitting out in front of Grandpa’s house. Everyone was just getting up except for little 18-month-old Dani, Landon’s sister, who was still warm and asleep in her crib.

Grandpa’s house was outside of town and considered pretty remote. Even then, Buddy didn’t go outside during the day time just in case someone saw him. He looked left and right, up and down. Only the occasional bird overhead. No cars, no people walking, no one to see him.

David, Landon and Dani’s Dad, and Grandpa were going to have to shovel the driveway before they could go anywhere, well, that’s what they thought, anyway.

No one around.

Continue reading

Shadow of the Dark Wizard

dark castle

Image: spyderonlines.com

The Third Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

For the first two stories in this series, see The Day the Dragon Came to Live with Us and Rescuing a Dragon.

Tarmreiboth the Dark Wizard had become very interested in the spaces between worlds recently, and with good reason. It was being used by fugitives.

Tarmreiboth resided in a realm ruled by his family for thousands of generations that was dangerously near the void between the dimensions. It’s near in the sense that the darkness from the void enters Tarmreiboth’s realm rendering it dark as well. It has always been that way, as far back as the eldritch sages of the Storvian Mountains remembered, which was a considerable length of time.

Yet this darkness rendered Setioval, which was the name of Tarmreiboth’s dark planet, strangely immune to detection by the Shadow Dragons who ruled the space between worlds. It may have helped that the denizens of Setioval were just as black hearted and evil as the Shadow Dragons, but it was still a puzzle why the Dragons never visited their realm.

No matter, since they never have. Still Tarmreiboth liked to keep an eye on what was happening in the void.

An Ambrosial Dragon making the crossing between one dimension and the next was unusual but not unheard of. The dragon having two human companions from Earth with him was unprecedented. Earth was almost a forgotten legend in the world of Setioval. This astonishing reminder led Tarmreiboth to do a little research.

Continue reading

Rescuing a Dragon

crystal trees

Uwe Zucchi / AFP – Getty Images

The Second Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

If you haven’t done so yet, read the first story The Day a Dragon Came to Live with Us.

Grandpa sat in a chair on his back patio pretending to manipulate a drone’s controls while Buddy the Dragon flew high above.

“You see, Landon…” Grandpa addressed his seven-year-old grandson sitting to his right, “…if anyone sees Buddy way up there, I can just say I’m flying a drone over the field. The trick is taking off and landing.”

“I’m glad he can fly. He likes to be high up.” Landon didn’t take his eyes off of the golden figure in the distance, imagining what it would be like to be up there with his best friend.

Grandpa spoke into the microphone he’d wired into the drone control box. “Okay Buddy, that’s a wrap. C’mon down now.” The dragon could hear Grandpa through a headset he’s managed to get to fit on Buddy’s head. The dragon could talk back through a small microphone.

“Flying, flying. Buddy likes flying.”

“It’s getting late and Dani will be waking up from her nap soon.” Dani was Landon’s 15-month-old sister. Landon’s and Dani’s Dad was still at work but would be home in time for dinner.

“Oh, okie-dokey, Gramps.”

Buddy went into a nosedive right toward the back of Grandpa’s house, but at the last second he fully extended his wings and breaking hard, landed softly on the back lawn not five feet from the startled pair.

Grandpa recovered his composure. “Have a nice flight?”

The dragon walked up to Grandpa and nuzzled his head on the older man’s leg. “Yup, yup, yup. Good fly. Good fly.”

Continue reading

The Day a Dragon Came to Live with Us

dragonThe First Story in the Adventures of the Ambrosial Dragon: A Children’s Fantasy Series

The old man found the dragon in the middle of the field behind his house. It’s not everyday you find a mythical being lying in the tall, wet grass while going for a stroll. Last night there had been a terrible thunderstorm, common in Southwestern Idaho during late summer. Had the storm somehow brought this dragon?

“Oh my! What are you?” Grandpa James wasn’t used to fantastical happenings. He lived a quiet life with his son and grandchildren a few miles outside of town. They were all at home still asleep. Grandpa almost always took his walks early on Summer mornings before it got hot.

The dragon said something. It definitely sounded like words, sort of whispered, but totally incomprehensible. It seemed to be beckoning.

“You poor thing. Your wing is broken.”

Having never met a dragon before, Grandpa wasn’t sure how close to get. He wanted to help the creature, but would it bite?

“Me no hurt.”

Those were the first words it said Grandpa could understand.

“You won’t hurt me?”

The dragon nodded.

“I want to help you. Can I pick you up?”

The dragon seemed to smile but exposing what looked like hundreds of needle thin teeth gave Grandpa pause.

Summoning his courage, he gingerly approached the formerly mythical creature. It was about the size of a large cocker spaniel or a small collie. Grandpa carefully avoided touching the broken wing and managed to get his arms around it.

Continue reading