Monday, October 16, 2017

The Dragon of Sness

It is about 30 feet long, and as tall as a horse at its hump though much thicker. Its hide is plates of interlocking bone, and underneath the seams there is what looks like more bone, but smooth and shiny, not like the rough stuff of the outer hide.  Occasionally the dragon of Sness sheds scales, which can be polished up, the dirt and rough edges filed down, until you find yourself with a smooth and unbreakable dragon scale that can be used as a table, or a door, or a shield, or a dinner plate, or a coaster, or as a coin, depending on size.

The Dragon of Sness crawls around with its head under the ground, plowing up dirt and leaving a trail of earth behind it. Why it does this is a matter of speculation
1- It eats buried corpses, and so is constantly looking for them
2-Its eyeballs are its only weak spots, so it hides its head underground
3-It has very sensitive hearing and underground is the only place it can get peace and quiet
4-It is from a moon, and Helios will smite it if it ever shows its face to the light

Things known about the Dragon of Sness
1- Wolves haven't come near Sness since the Dragon showed up
2- Everyone attempting to kill it has died, so it must be dangerous, and there has never been a scratch seen on the beast itself, so it must be very tough indeed. Visitors and dogs sometimes go missing too. But it has never eaten an inhabitant of Sness, that anyone knows of.
3-It does not truly burrow, and animals do not seem to recognize the great white body as anything to fear- cows rub against it, and sheep lie in the shade cast by its bulk on hot days. If it ever eats them, it does so very infrequently and very cleanly.
4-After it killed Sir Denslry, a bounty of 10,000c was placed on it by the lord of the region at the behest of his distraught daughter, who was to be Sir Denslry's wife.

People who died after swearing they would defeat the dragon of Sness, and what parts of their equipment are on display in the Barrow of Heroes.
1- Sir Denslry- Found drowned in a small stream. Commonly accepted theory is that the dragon tossed him through the air, he hit his head on a streambed rock, and drowned face down after being knocked silly. His gear was recovered by his squire, who was a mere 12 years old and much beloved by the town, so the gear is of wood, and a dragonscale imitation of his heraldic shield.
2- Dratos the Helognostic- Found burned to death and reeking of alcohol. Commonly accepted theory is that his attempt to burn the dragon backfired and the molotovs he carried were all ignited by accident when he was tail-slapped when lighting one. His burned boots are on display.
3-Jalan the troubadour- found beaten to death near town, his plan to poison the beast by pouring poison down a molehill presumably a failure. Probably was trampled and almost made it back to town before succumbing to his wounds, a noble effort considering his crushed genitals. His broken lute and feathered hat are on display.
4-Masked Knight Aradiccio. A brave and noble knight who was found dead with no apparent wounds, perhaps suggesting a poison breath or lethal gaze capability of the dragon. His simulated gear is wood except for the mask, which is an appropriately sized dragon scale with eyeholes painted on- his rapier was never found, which was quite regrettable as all the villagers will describe how valuable it looked. Perhaps in the dragons' hoard, if it has one.
5- Forester Blooker- An exceptionally large and hairy man who preferred the company of animals to humans, he was found dead with several deep puncture wounds in his back, suggesting that the dragon may be quite snaggle-toothed, but with needle-like teeth, perhaps as a snakes. His curious weapon, a sort of battle-shovel, was preserved in the Hall of Heroes, along with one of his braids.
6- Merchant Phillip- Though it was surprising that a merchant would try his hand at dragon slaying, he never returned from the dragon's fields, probably dragged into the dragons earth-mound while still alive, and the town regretfully inherited his oxen, wagon, and vast quantity of fine wine, an empty bottle of which is kept in the Barrow in his memory.
7- Prince Ibn-Al-Haffir and his 20 retainers. Found reeking of alcohol, with throats cut. Low moral character led to the hypothesis that they all had a preemptive celebration, got blackout drunk, and were slaughtered in their sleep by the dragon's claws, or maybe fangs if it has any. His scimitar is on display and is covered with a dark stain of blood, doubtless from his attempted slaying.

Can you deduce the dragon's method of attack or perhaps its weakness? The villagers will urge you to preserve your own life and not to worry about their really quite tolerable predicament, but 10,000c is quite the sum...

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