Dragons and Unicorns
“I think you should do it.”
Craig winced as he felt tiny claw prickles scramble from his left pocket up to his shoulder. A small flutter of air told him a scaly and sharp tail just managed to miss his skin, when a sapphire dragon finally settled down at the crook of his neck.
“It’s a crime, you know,” a melodic voice, like tiny bells said, so different from the deep bass of the dragon. It belonged to a bronze unicorn, who managed to gently float on Craig’s right shoulder. With an accusing glare at the dragon, the unicorn said to the teenager, “You will never be able to live with yourself if you do this.”
“Oh, get lost Amalthea,” the dragon softly hissed, and tiny puffs of smoke rose up from its nostrils. “It’s not like he hasn’t done it before,” the majestic creature reared on its back legs, and flapped its wings, trying to throw the unicorn it so despised, down.
“All living creatures can change, Dinah, you know that,” Amalthea gazed at Craig’s other companion, before turning back to the boy. “It is not too late to change, young one,” she softly added, and curled up by his neck. “Just imagine how disappointed your family would be.”
Craig hung his head low and glanced at the black mask he had in his hands. He took a step back and bumped against a duffel bag he brought with him. A tingle of bitter guilt managed to sneak past his determination and took a hold of his heart. Amalthea was right, his family would be so disappointed.
Dinah snorted, and whipped her tail back and forth. “Emotional blackmail, so classy.” She sat up, taking a moment to readjust her balance. “You unicorns think you are so high and mighty, but you are not above us, or anyone, really,” Dinah ended her rant with a small jet of fire.
Amalthea gave the dragon a very unimpressed look. “Everyone is abov-,“ she started, but a frustrated shout interrupted whatever she was about to say.
“Quiet, both of you,” Craig growled. He knelt down by the duffel bag, opened it and rummaged within. Craig gave a soft sound of victory as he pulled out a can of spray paint and went to work, ignoring Amalthea’s defeated sigh and Dinah’s smirk.
Craig’s footsteps were unnaturally loud in the corridor. He hated hospitals, they always smelled like antiseptic and had a general cloud of unhappiness around them. Craig slipped through the door marked with 142, wilting under the glare of one other occupant in the room, besides the frail figure on the bed.
“You are late…again,” the stern woman pursed her lips. “Have you been out with those people?” she spat out the last word, giving Craig an idea about her opinion of them. Not that he did not know already.
“No, mom,” Craig weakly replied and moved closer to the bed. “I had a thing to do.”
“Things to do, things to do. What is wrong with you?” his mother stepped to him and nearly tore the bag from his shoulders. She opened it against Craig’s protests and snorted in disgust at what she saw within. “Your sister is dying and you would rather commit crimes than-“ Craig’s mother stopped when a girl’s voice called out for her brother.
Craig glared at his mother when he moved closer to his younger sister and caressed her head, now bald from chemotherapy. “What is it Clara?” The young girl was prevented from answering by a nurse, with a tired smile adorning her face. “I see your mom and brother are already here, how about letting in some sun?” With that, she walked towards the window and opened the curtains to a most brilliant sight.
The huge brick wall of a business that obstructed the view of a river from the pediatric hospital was filled with a wonder of images. Almost an exact replica of the river, many different animals, ranging from fish to butterflies, the sun, the moon, constellations, but in the middle of it all, were a sapphire dragon and a bronze unicorn.