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The First Dragon

as was the child's tale version written by Elrond.

 

   It is said that in the dark times, and around the dawning at the beginning of this world, that there were many creatures made indeed. Elda, Man, Dwarven... and then the Dark One of the Valar found interest in new and strange beings, for he envisioned a folk winged, whose eyes glinted as the coals of the dark furnaces of this earth, and whose voices shook the very foundations of stone, and whose lungs breathed only smoke .

   In the year 400 past the counting of the First Age, the first of these creatures was seen in the cold mountains, only it has not been made apparently as the Dark One wished, for winged it was, but it had no bravery whatsoever and, small as it was, it shrank into the rock.  Found by men, it was first named the fire-breather, the dragon. Not brave, not bold, not even wise, it wandered around muttering, worrying, and so came the term worry-worm.  It shook in its halls, trembling, asking, then shrinking.  Dragor, the man who found it and of whom's namesake the worm was given, spoke to the creature in the rock, and was rewarded by its tail, twitching in a nervous sort of way.

   "What dost thou want," were its words, but unfortunately, the men of that time understood nothing of worm-speech and it knew nothing of men.

   The Worm turned then to Dragor, for the creature's eyes in all their flames caught sight of something bright and shiny. A button.  And so the first dragon-lust was formed.

   His tail a-twitch, the Worm turned around in his hole, though it was hard to do so for his belly, though it had not seen a delectable beetle in a few weeks, was fat still. He spoke again to Dragor, and it was said this time the man was enlightened, and he heard the dragon's wily pleas. "What is this shiny! I want the shiny! I shall slip around your necks and burn your flesh if I do not get the shiny!"

   Hardly frightened by the size of the Worm, Dragor plucked the button which the snake wanted with such lust.  "This you want?" Dragor challenged.

   "Yes, yes, the shiny thing!"

   "Then give me all the lands in your area, and I will give you this treasure!"

   The Worm, so flustered with greed and lustful adoration, and hateful hissings and spittings wriggled around in circles, then in more circles. It thought in its black heart the value of its cold stone lands and forests, especially the forests, for dragons hate the forests.  "I will receive the shiny!!" it hissed and breathed a withering snake of flame, the only thing, perhaps, thinner than its legs.

   "You will have it, yes, and all the shinies of my companions' possession!" Dragor spoke, and the Worm's eyes flared red, for it sensed it was giving much for the shining thing.

   It gazed again at the button. "I'll take, I'll take!"

   "Do you swear it?" Dragor challenged.

   The Worm curled and hissed, and frothed ever more than before for in all its numbered days it had never sworn to anything and had nothing it cared for but another morsel from under a rock. "Me swears..." it hissed. "Me swears on my tail!" the tail lashed in their faces from under the rock crevice.

   Then Dragor, the Man bold and brave, plucked all the clasps from his garments, and ordered his men to do the same. And then they were handed to the creature's spindly palm. Clutching them to heart, it licked them and gazed at them, and petted them, for it loved all things shiny. And the creature settled in its rock and let the Men pass and take the land, for the Worm thought in its heart it had been wily and sly, to trick the two-leggeds into taking worthless land for such a priceless thing. And so the first land was sold to Men, taken for the price of a handful of brass buttons.

*

**This story carries with it a certain lilt of adventure, akin to the stories of Bilbo's travels, based from a historical story.  Whether this is the true account, well...**