This story is clean, all characters in this story are mine, and should not be used without my permission.
Well, this story is a bit different than most of the stuff I've written, so I want to ask you, the reader, how I did, don't be shy, give me your honest opinion, I'm not going to cry over it. There are going to be a few more parts to this story, and I like how this is going personally. I don't foresee anything naughty in this series, although I may make a side story or two that are... Enjoy the story!
Lance was dragged toward the center of the circle of elders, his white fur a mess from being held in prison for the three days before his 'trial', not that it was fair to call this a trial. The two guards dragging him into the room weren't being gentle in any way; in fact it was quite the contrary, handling the poor fox with unnecessary roughness. Once Lance was in the center of the room, the high elder spoke out in authoritative tone, "Lance Cairne, you have been accused of the crime of stealing from the mayor of our fine village, have you anything to say in your defense?"
Lance didn't, he hadn't committed the crime, but the elders' decision was already made, and there was no point in arguing, "I don't, do what you will." His voice was shaky and his body went limp, knowing this may be the last time he saw this village ever again.
"If you have nothing to say in your defense, then the elders will now vote on your punishment." The high elder said.
"Exile." One elder said; an old raccoon with aged features.
"I vote exile as well." One of the two green dragon elders. The other green dragon concurred.
"Exile." Came the passionless voice of an arctic fox, the word was like a slap to the face for Lance, for this elder was his own father.
"It seems we have reached a common sentence, from this day foreword, you, Lance Cairne, shall be exiled from this village, if you step inside these walls again, you will be at the mercy of the guards." The high elder said.
Lance didn't say a word; he would at least leave with a small shred of dignity. Lance was released, and allowed a half hour to gather whatever possessions he could carry with him.
Lance didn't need the large amount of time, and preferred not to be dragged from the village. He left without another word, a sack full of food, a few pouches of water, and a knife he had made long ago were his only worldly possessions, save the small amount of money he had earned doing odd jobs in the village.
Lance padded away; his father's passionless sentence of exile ran through his head. Lance walked north, not really thinking of a destination. His small amount of money wouldn't allow him to stay anywhere in a city, he would have to try to find kind folk that would take him in for the night. Lance walked the entire day, taking small portions of food and water, trying his best to conserve his small amount of supplies. He didn't know how far he could walk without collapsing, and didn't particularly want to find out.
Once weariness started to seep into his muscles, and he began to stumble, he stopped. He looked around in search of somewhere he may be able to stay for the night. He spotted a farmhouse in the distance, and stumbled toward it, the exertion of the full day of walking with limited food and water finally sinking in.
He knocked at the door of the farmhouse, and waited a short while. The door opened and he saw a female cat at the door, "Can I help you young man?" the cat asked.
"Is there any way I could stay here for the night? I'll be gone in the morning, and I won't eat any of your food." Lance said, trying his best to convince the cat that he would be no burden.
"Nonsense, you'll eat a good dinner and a good breakfast, as for a place to stay, we have an empty room you could sleep in for the night." The woman replied cheerily.
"Thank you, thank you so much." Lance said; he had expected rejection so the blow of a 'no' wouldn't hurt as badly.
"It's nothing at all, come on in, you look exhausted." The cat said. Lance didn't hesitate, he walked in, and after the woman told him to sit and wait while she heated the stew she had made earlier, his stomach pleaded for food, and he sat down at the old, well used table.
"Mary?" A deep voice from the floor above Lance said, "Who are you talking to?"
"It's just a young man who needs a place to stay for the night."
Lance heard footsteps, and the sound of old stairs moaning as a fur walked down them. The fur appeared after a few seconds and walked closer to Lance. The fur was a large lion, and as he walked closer to Lance, the lion looked Lance over warily. "You don't look like a runaway, too sharp looking, and you don't have fidgety eyes, so I can tell you aren't a criminal. So that leaves the question, why do you need to stay here?"
Lance breathed a sigh of relief, the lion didn't think him a criminal, "The elders of my village accused me of a crime I didn't commit, and now I've been exiled."
The lion nodded, "I see, you are welcome to stay the night, or longer if you like, but if you decide to stay longer you will have to earn your keep."
Lance could have easily stayed at the farm for a while, with the two kind furs, but he knew it was a life he didn't want, and kindly declined the offer to stay longer, "It's kind of you to offer, but I don't want to be a burden on you two longer than I must."
"So be it." The lion said. The food was ready soon after their talk and Lance ate the stew with a ravenous appetite, once his empty stomach was full again; he was on the verge of falling asleep where he sat, "Where can I sleep for the night?" He asked.
"Follow me." Mary said. She led Lance up the stairs to the second floor and toward a wall with three doors, "The one on the right is where you can sleep."
Lance nodded, walked into the room, and fell onto the bed. He fell asleep almost instantly; his dreams were filled with strange images he couldn't comprehend. When he woke, cold sweat covered his body, and he felt strangely weak. He walked down the stairs once he was able to do so, and sat at the table quietly.
"Just in time for breakfast, dear!" Mary said, cheery as always, when she spotted Lance.
Lance nodded his appreciation when Mary brought over bread, eggs, and a glass of milk, "Eat up, you'll need your strength to get where you plan on going." Lance nodded and ate the food slowly, savoring every bite. Once he had finished, he felt his strength was renewed, and thanked the couple. He grabbed his sack of supplies, and headed off again, sticking to his path of going north. He figured he'd find something worth stopping for eventually.
As he walked, he heard a soft whooshing noise in the distance. He didn't think much of it, and kept the steady pace he had been walking at for hours now. The whooshing sound grew louder, and Lance became more alert, checking his surroundings constantly. When he found nothing, he disregarded the sound. As he walked on, the sound grew louder, louder, when it grew so loud that it seemed it was right on top of him, Lance pulled his knife out of h is pack, stopped, and looked around with a wary eye.
'No need for that, young fox, I am here only to see why it is you trespass on our land.' Came a gentle voice, Lance didn't hear the voice with his ears, but felt the voice in his mind somehow.
"Show yourself." Lance said shakily, not liking the fact that he was talking to something he couldn't see.
'So be it.' The voice resonated in his head once more. Lance saw a glimmering shape take form in front of him, something impossibly large. Once it had fully formed, the shining blood red scales and humungous wings caught Lance's eye, "You're a... A feral dragon?" He asked; he had grown up thinking that the feral dragons were extinct now.
'Yes, I am.' The dragon said, 'Now I believe you owe me an answer, why do you trespass on our land? Who told you how to get here?'
"What? Nobody told me how to get here, I just walked north; I have nowhere to go."
'Why is that, young one?' The dragon asked.
"I was exiled from my village." Lance explained.
The dragon snorted, 'you are no criminal, I can see that much.' The dragon paused a second before adding, 'But I can tell you aren't lying, why were you exiled?'
"I was accused of a crime, and I couldn't defend myself."
'So now you have nowhere to go.'
"Exactly." Lance said.
'We haven't had a visitor like you in many moons.'
"What do you mean by that?"
'It is impossible to reach this place without knowing how, yet you have done just that.' The dragon said, looking at lance curiously.
Lance didn't know what he could say, he had just walked, he didn't plan on coming here, he didn't even know where here was. "So now what? Are you going to send me back?"
'Quite the contrary, I intend to take you in, if you accept, you will become something... More than what you are now.'
Lance wasn't quite sure he liked the thought of being turned into something else, "And if I refuse?"
'I won't force you to do this, it is your decision, and yours alone, although if you reject the... transformation, then I cannot take you in.'
Lance thought of his other options, and realized he wasn't in much of a position to decline; he had close to no money, dwindling supplies, and nowhere he could stay for an extended period of time.
"The transformation you mentioned, what will happen to me?"
'I cannot reveal that to you, I hope you can understand the secrecy of an age-old ritual.'
Lance nodded, and thought of his options again, "I'll go with you." He said shakily, something about this offer was different than the offer the couple had given him to stay at the farm, this felt right somehow.
'Excellent, now I will fly you to our lair, please do not squirm, I cannot help you if you fall.' With that, the dragon grabbed Lance in its talons. Lance was about to squirm free of the dragon's talons, feeling trapped and unsafe, when he remembered the dragon's warning and shuddered. Lance kept as still as possible, not even so much as craning his neck to look away from the ground that flitted past him at an alarming speed.
The flight was short, the dragon's speed covered miles in seconds. Once Lance was on the ground again, he let out a breath he didn't know he was holding.
'Come with me, we will have the preparations for the ceremony ready soon.' Lance followed the dragon through large tunnels, having to run to keep up with the dragon, even with the slow pace it set.
'You can stay here until the ceremony is done being prepared, when it is, I will come to get you.'
Lance nodded, "Am I allowed to leave this place?"
'No, the others aren't quite as kind as I am to visitors, especially the furred ones.'
Lance got the picture, and dropped the subject, not wanting to press the details. The dragon left Lance alone in the room, and began to stride down the halls away from Lance. Lance stayed in the room, away from the opening that allowed others to peer in. After sitting in the same spot for nearly two hours, he felt heavy footsteps come near.
'It is ready, come with me.' The familiar voice rang in Lance's head.
Lance pushed himself off of the ground and walked to the opening. The dragon started its slow pace down the halls, Lance in tow, not wanting to stray far from the dragon.
When the dragon reached the opening to a large cave, it stopped, and snaked its head down to look at Lance, 'Are you ready young one?'
Lance nodded, and followed the dragon into the cave. Lance was surrounded in the warm light of fire, dragons were positioned in a semi-circle on the other side of the room, and their eyes flickered and danced with the constantly shifting flames that lit the room.
Nothing was said until Lance reached the center of the room where a small table stood; it was made of stone, and seemed to be a part of the ground itself. 'Sit, and we shall start the ceremony.' Lance heard in his head, he couldn't tell which dragon said the words, but he wasn't about to disobey the intimidating figures sitting in front of him.
Lance sat at the cold stone seat in front of the table.
'Ignatius has found you worth of this honor, Lance Cairne, so we will bestow upon you the powers of the dragon.' Lance was confused, how did the dragons know his name? Even... Ignatius is what they called the red-scaled dragon, right? He hadn't even told Ignatius his name.
Lance stayed silent, although questions raged in his mind, he kept silent and still. The dragons were silent as well, and one of the dragons in the circle brought forth a goblet, not physically touching it, but making it float toward lance. The goblet was filled with a dark liquid that was a deep red; Lance was sure he knew what was inside of the goblet, but wasn't sure he liked the thought of it.
'By drinking the blood of a dragon who freely gives it to you, you will gain the powers of a dragon.' Another voice he couldn't place said to him.
Lance looked at the goblet, the thought of drinking the blood of a dragon wasn't a pleasant one, but he was in no position to turn back now. He picked up the goblet, and drank more than he had intended, which brought on a fit of coughing. Lance felt his body tingling, although he felt his body changing, and his bones rearranging, it wasn't unpleasant like he had thought something like this would be, instead of pain, he felt extremely pleasant, almost soothing, like he was being awakened from a fuzzy dream.
As his body continued to change, the room seemed much brighter and clearer, his senses sharpened intensely. As his senses sharpened, he felt his back changing somehow, when the feeling passed, he looked over his shoulder, and saw a large bone structure for what looked like a set of wings sitting on his back, with membrane-like skin starting to form, and thick muscle forming on the bone sections. His fingers began to change as well, and his claws thickened greatly, once they had finished, they felt near unbreakable.
Small changes continued to take place, until his entire body seemed to tingle, and he felt his old weak body become an impenetrable fortress that would protect him without fail, his frail skin became thick armor under his fur that was stronger than any plate of steel.
When the sensations of changing passed, he looked at the dragons, 'Is it over?' He asked, not noticing his mouth hadn't moved.
'Yes, young one, it is.' One of the dragons said, this time Lance unconsciously knew which dragon had said the words, 'The ceremony is complete, you are Ignatius's responsibility now, he will teach you how to revert to your original form, how to use your current one, and how to use draconian magic.
Lance nodded to the dragon that had spoken, Ignatius slowly padded toward Lance, 'Come with me, young one.' He said as he began to walk slowly out of the room.
Lance found it much easier to keep up with the dragon, his strength and speed seemed to have doubled with the transformation of his body. The dragon guided Lance back to the room he had been left in.
'I suppose I should teach you about your new body.' Ignatius said.
Lance nodded, and listened as the dragon explained that Lance's wings would allow him to fly, unlike the anthro dragon's wings, which no longer served any function. Lance listened intently as the dragon told him of his body's strengths, 'Is there a downside to being what I am?' Lance asked after the dragon had told him of his exceptional senses, strengths and strong skin.
'Yes, you haven't seen yourself, but you look like the demons that plague the dreams of many.' Ignatius said, 'You cannot look like this if you want to leave this place, or you will be hunted forever.'
Lance frowned, 'Am I truly that frightening?"
'Would you like to see for yourself?' The dragon asked.
Lance nodded and the dragon led him to a pool of still water that reflected his new body. Unfamiliar eyes looked back at him, instead of the round pupils that he used to have, there were black slits, his eyes were no longer hazel, but a dark red, his white fur was now as black as night, and his wings were the same jet black that his fur was. He looked at his face, it had changed as well, seeming more reptilian and his muzzle had elongated. Lance truly looked like the demons his father described in his stories.
'This is why we will teach you how to revert to your original form, although it will not change everything back to its original state, you will still have red eyes, and you may still have some black fur on you.'
Lance was relieved he could at least look somewhat less demonic once he learned how to change back. 'You have a long way to go young one, but you will get there eventually.'
Like I said, this story is a bit different than my usual stuff, a bit more serious in my opinion. I like how it turned out, but I want to know your honest opinion, like I said, don't be shy, tell me what you thought, it helps with my future stories.
I'm going to start working on other stories tomorrow, I'm not sure how far I'll get in whatever story I start, because I've written 7-8 pages worth of story in 4 or so hours, and sometimes I can only get 2-3 pages in that time, it depends really.
As always, thanks for watching, reading, fav'ing, and everything else you furs do. Keep your eyes peeled for my next story!