Smoke rose from Cleo’s singed clothes as silently as her footsteps carried her. She passed the kennels clinging a bundle of squirming blankets. The king’s latest campaign against magical creatures was causing overcrowding. Three goblins jeered as she fumbled with the treatment room door. They fell silent when a troll skulked forwards.
“Sorry, Gahf, I’ll come n’ see you later. Promise.”
She laid the bundle on the table, a green tail dangled from the folds. While she gathered supplies, the blanket fell away, and the world’s last dragon examined its rescuer. Cleo smiled at the pint-sized creature. She pulled on her gloves, and the dragon growled, revealing needle-like teeth.
“Shh. I ain’t gonna hurt you.”
Cleo opened its wing and applied the ointment. It hiccupped in thanks.
A loud crash made her drop the bottle. Two creature control officers rushed into the room.
“Where is it?”
Cleo raised her eyebrows and hoped he hadn’t noticed her press the emergency release.
She grinned. Behind him, Gahf squeezed into the room, followed by the goblins. Gahf flung the first guard to the ceiling, rendering him unconscious. As the goblins set to work stealing the second guard’s armor, Cleo slipped through the back door.
She lifted the dragon high. It tilted its head.
A half-dressed guard fell through the door, knocking Cleo to the ground.
By Stacey Potter