Merlin came out of the shadows. She’d gotten used to that. The way he was invisible in the shadows. And then just popped out of nowhere. But she expected it would take time for the child to get used to that. Even if Merlin was a tiny dragon. He only came up to her waist. He wasn’t much taller than the girl. But he was Merlin. The most dangerous dragon of all time.
“And I’m going to have a 4-year-old girl living with the two most powerful dragons there are. Oh, my.”
Merlin inspected the new home. “This is for her, isn’t it?”
“Yes. I’ve decided what to do to take care of her.”
Merlin laughed. It sounded like a sheet of metal being crumpled up, but Mystica knew it was his laugh. “Sally really got to you didn’t she?”
“Yes. She did.” Mystica thought of the little girl, Sally. Who had died a horrible death in the Gray Hills. How she’d been too late to save her. How Sally had asked, “Will you be my Mommy?”
Mystica would have. She would have cared for Sally as if she were her real mother. And now, there was Verdant Green. Her parents both dead. One by accident. The other by her own hand. It was a horrible thing by itself. But the way the people of the kingdom treated her. She deserved so much more than that. She deserved better. She deserved to have a mother. She deserved to be loved. And cared for. To have someone who could help her learn the ways of her magic gift.
Mystica could do that.
Mystica would do that.
She looked at the surface of the lake, and watched as the white magic painted the story of the dragons outside the castle, protecting the children, Musica and Verdant Green. She watched the fairies attack. She watched the dragons use their wild magic to defend the girls. She watched the girls make a bed of straw, and sleep on it. While the dragons watched over them. She saw the fairies that were injured.
There would be much to do when she got there. Much to do indeed.
Mystica and Merlin ate berries, and cheese. And they drank water from the lake. They talked about what was to come. The flight to the kingdom. Merlin had laughed hard when Mystica had said that flight would take a while. “White Witch. You could get there far more rapidly than you realized. You have that magic power. That magic gift.”
Mystica had smiled. Merlin was always so confident of her. He always seemed to know what she could do. Much better than she did. Sometimes she wondered how he knew. Someday, she would ask him. But for now, she just smiled. “But I’ll have to go slowly enough for you and Scream to keep up.”
Merlin fell over he was laughing so hard.