It was a wild and stormy night. (No, really it was!)
Gregor was in bed. He was curled up under the covers with his stuffed manatee (Matawee) and his toy dolphin. He wasn’t quite asleep but he was in that comfortable, warm and drowsy state where sleep is not far off.
And so, when he heard a sound at his window (snork, snurfle, skronk) he couldn’t be sure at first if he was asleep and dreaming it, or if he was awake and hearing it.
The noise continued. Snork, snork, snurfle, skronk, CLINK and then a definite thwonk against his windowpane.
Gregor knew then that this was no dream. He pulled off his covers, climbed down the ladder of his loft bed, and padded over to the window. He tweaked back the curtain and looked up in to the huge yellow eye of his very own dragon.
“Hello Dragon. What do you want now?” If he sounded a little cross it was only because he had been so very comfortable.
(And if you don’t know how a five-year-old boy could have a dragon for a friend, you must ask me to tell you some time and I’ll tell you how the whole thing started. It’s quite a tale).
The dragon snuffled a little more and then began to speak. His voice sounded like gravel being rolled around in the bottom of a drum, the roar of an airplane engine and, faintly, like the clinking of a heavy chain.
“The storm, Little One,” he said. “It has brought down power lines. I need your help to find them and restore them.”
“Me? How can I possibly help?”
“You must climb on my back and fly with me. In a storm such as this, I need an extra pair of eyes to help me find my way.”
Gregor chewed the collar of his pyjamas a little and then said,
“Why not?” asked the dragon.
“I’m…” Gregor screwed up his face and blurted out, “I’m scared of the storm.”
The dragon roared and Gregor clamped his hands over his ears.
“Don’t laugh at me!” Gregor’s lip trembled.
“I’m sorry, Little One,” the dragon said. “It’s just that, in a storm there is no safer place you can be, than on a dragon’s back.”
“Why?” Gregor was interested. His soggy collar fell out of his mouth.
“You’ll see if you come with me,” said the dragon.
[the rest of this story is in a very cute audio file that I’m too tired to transcribe just now. Or figure out how to get it out of iTunes and upload.]