Lark and Elm (2016-09-24)

The thing that lands in front of them is large, intimidating, and entirely metal. Like a wyvern, maybe, if wyverns were made of iron and steel.

It doesn’t move, though, and Elm settles down on all fours.

“Hello?” Lark calls out, in the strange twisting tongue of dragons. Human languages are easier, obviously, but the Order teaches each of its prospective knights all the languages of the land.

It doesn’t answer.

“Hello?” she tries again, in the dark language of monsters.

Again, it doesn’t answer.

“What do we do?” Lark asks Elm who is shifting nervously around, perfectly ready to run if necessary. Knights of the Order are capable of taking on powerful creatures–skilled knights can even take on a dragon, if need be–but Lark is only no longer a squire out of technicality, and Elm is more than capable of figuring out their odds.

Before Elm can respond, a hiss comes out from the metal creature as what looks to be a large maw begins to open.

Lark summons her sword and her best attempt at a shield, the lavender glow a comforting contrast to the red light coming from the creature’s mouth. Lark is impervious to fire–but only normal fire, not magical fire–Elm has less than that.

The metal creature continues to hiss, the mouth opening wider and wider. But instead of a view into the bellows of a magical fire-breathing creature, Lark and Elm are treated with the sight of… a person inside the metal creature… just sitting.

‘It’s not a creature,’ Elm says to her, though the bravado shines through, ‘It’s… giant magical armor?’

Well, neither she nor Elm are unfamiliar with the idea of magical armor, though their armor is to scale with their size.

“Howdy,” the person inside the giant armor says, lifting an odd looking hat in greeting. It’s no formal bow, but it’s also not a magical fireball to the face so Lark will take it.

“How dee?” Lark responds, in confusion.

“Come on now,” the person says, almost cajoling, “You can speak Standard. I heard you talking to your horse.”

Elm snorts, affronted. ‘I’m not your horse. If anything, you’re my knight.’

“I don’t know what standard is,” Lark says, instead of responding to Elm, “But I can understand what you’re saying.”

A mental nudge from Elm prompts her to add, “And so can Elm. And he doesn’t appreciate you calling him my horse. I’m his knight.”

The person hops out of his giant armor and walks over to them, slow and obvious and hands out placatingly.

“Alright,” he says, easy enough with a shrug. “It’s been a while since I’ve seen a horse, but that sounds about right.”

Elm lets the person pet him for a brief moment before snorting and pulling away, professional.

“I’m Tag,” the person says, “Short for Taggart, and that’s Duchess,” he adds with a wave over at the giant armor.

For a second, Lark and Elm share a flare of confusion–is it not giant armor after all?–before the person, Tag, continues.

“And if this is Elm, who are you?”

Lark hesitates, but he did help them with the hellhounds, and he’s not doing anything threatening. And besides,

“I’m Lark, a Knight of the Order of Dawn”

Knights are not afraid of anything.


A/N: Still working on my godson’s gift, but didn’t want to have two missed posts in a row.

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