How to Kill a Dragon (Heir of Dragons Book 1)
How to Kill a Dragon
Heir of Dragons book 1
Copyright © 2021 by J.A. Culican
All Rights Reserved.
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The characters, locations, and events portrayed in this book are fictitious. Any similarities or resemblance to real persons, living or dead is coincidental and not intended by the author.
To my readers-for this series wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for you!
Glossary of Creatures
About the Author
Also by J.A. Culican
Among the Fae, there was no hunter more capable or fighter more skilled than Minx. But as her father repeated his request, she still couldn't seem to wrap her head around it. “The dragons... they're gathering?” she asked.
Her father nodded solemnly. “It's as I've told you. They've been spotted in the area recently. I'm afraid we'll need one of their hides if we're to keep the ward in place over Pandling Grounds and Heilo Lake.” He had knocked on her door just moments ago, interrupting an otherwise quiet afternoon, to bring her this mission. “It will be a difficult job,” he warned, “but I'm certain you can handle it. Who else can we rely on, if not you, our Dragon Hunter?” The gravity in his expression faded somewhat and he spared her an encouraging smile.
Minx had trained for many years, gaining a reputation among the Fae for her ferociousness and skill in battle; such was her expertise that she'd earned the title “Dragon Hunter”. But this would be her first time actually hunting down one of the Royal Dragons whose hides the denizens of Pandling Grounds utilized in their shield spell. Since the end of the Great Dragon Wars that took place many years ago, the monstrous things had been rarely seen, of course. To hear that these beasts were on the move again filled her with excitement—the excitement of one about to rise to a new challenge.
“So, after all this time they're finally trespassing on our lands?” she asked, rising from the edge of her bed and taking up the bow she'd left sitting against the wall. In the corner, snoozing contentedly, was her Faelyr companion, Mau. She channeled her thoughts at the sleeping lyr, urging her awake. Time to get up, Mau. This is going to be a big hunt, unlike any other.
The enormous feline opened her eyes, outstretching her paws and loosing a yawn. Oh, what's on the agenda this time around? asked the Faelyr telepathically.
It's time for me to live up to my title, was Minx's sole reply.
Mau's bright eyes widened for an instant and she rose from the floor, striding over toward the bed. Is that so? The dragons are getting feisty, I see...
Her father watched as Minx looked over her weapon, checking its tension and inspecting the arrows in her quiver. His grey brows arched and he smoothed out the folds in his tunic, picking up one of the arrows himself and testing the sharpness of its head. “Do you have everything you need? If you need more arrows, perhaps a new bow, I'm sure we could arrange for—”
“I've got more than enough,” she assured him with a mischievous grin. Tying back her dark locks into something manageable, she moved to the chest of drawers and pulled her bracelets from the topmost, slipping them onto her wrists and taking care to polish the dull blue stones embedded in them. “To be honest, father, I'd feel like I was cheating if I prepared much more. This poor dragon won't know what hit it.”
From the side of the bed, Mau offered a telepathic taunt. Now, don't get too full of yourself—else you might get us both killed!
With great pride in his eyes, her father placed a hand on her shoulder and sized her up. “I know you'll do well, my dear. You're a royal, built for this kind of mission. I haven't the least doubt of your abilities and I'm certain you'll come through for us.” Wrapping her in an embrace, he gently added, “But do be careful. A father worries, after all.”
She returned his embrace, slinging a slender arm around him. “Of course, father. I'll be back before you know it. Mau and I will see this through.” The loyal Faelyr padded over silently, pausing at her side.
“All right. I'll be off, then.” Her father spared her one last look—a mix of paternal pride and nerves all at once—and then stepped out into the quiet afternoon.
Minx fastened the quiver of arrows to her back tightly and adjusted the straps of her calf-high boots. Taking her bow in one hand, she led the way to the door. All right, Mau. Let's do this, she told her Faelyr companion. Let's hunt a dragon. Everyone's relying on us to get this done—and when we finish the job, our social standing is going to hit the roof.
It helps when your parents are on