The Prophet with the Dragon’s Tongue

A red dragon crawls through the ashes of a dead world. Her eye is a black void. It is like an oil slick. She crawls on her belly. She crawls on broken claws. She crawls with raspy breath, a small strand of smoke wavering from her nostril like a broken signal, not quite forming a question mark.

Above her fireworks flash in hallucinatory patterns with the rainbow pain and beauty of an LSD trip. The essences of the dead world, its eidetic memories, which only the eyes of the void can read. She does not look up because her optic nerves are frayed and jangled and her neck is stiff from gazing.

As the lights fade she lies down, lays her heavy head in the dust. The final images flash in her scales. As she disintegrates they fall with the pictures contained within them like monads – if only they survived those in the present might have glimpsed their errors in this future but with her they crumble.

As the cavern of her skull caves in the last thing left is her lower jaw and her long red tongue. On its tip is a spark of fire. Spitting, hissing, crackling, it refuses to give over this meaty muscle to the death winds, who are already arriving with their steeds, their chariots, their hounds, their whips to drive her remnants across the plains of dust so that she and her world are well and truly forever gone.

It spits, hisses, crackles against the attacks of the death winds. It glows, it grows, a fiery orb, hardens into a dragon’s egg. After nine nights and nine days it cracks, each split like dark lightning, and from it bursts a female figure black as the void with a multitude of wings and a serpent’s tail.

She puts the tongue into her mouth and her voice is heard in every mote of the dead world.

*The Prophet with the Dragon’s Tongue is going to be the narrator of some or all of the new mythic book I am working on.

6 thoughts on “The Prophet with the Dragon’s Tongue

  1. Rob Marchment says:

    Great, clear and powerful imagery…! Now we can’t wait to read more of your stories.

    Thank you,
    Rob

  2. Ogden Fahey says:

    Nice! I like it, but I think that rather than say “like and LSD trip” just describe the scene, that way people who have or haven’t tried LSD can get into it without the social connotations connected if you get my meaning? As soon as you say LSD, a whole bunch of readers might think oh yeah! Or, oh no! 🤓

    • Thornsilver says:

      Sometimes we speak from or about experiences that not everyone shares. I haven’t ever taken LSD but I can still relate to the scene because of the powerful and evocative way Lorna described it.

      Speaking of, thank you for sharing this Lorna. I’m excited to see more. 🙂

    • lornasmithers says:

      I had wondered about ‘LSD’ along with ‘eidetic memories’ and ‘monad’ as modern and philosophical terms that don’t fit with ancient mythology and need to think more about whether I want to incorporate them into the narrative.

      With LSD I think most folk, whether they’ve taken it or not, would have an idea of what it’s about as there are so many cultural representations (accurate and not so…). Which I guess is also slightly problematic. So maybe the imagery should, as you say, speak for itself. Show not tell and all…

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