Author's Notes: Hello all. Long time reader, first time writer. As a newbie in the writing department of this wonderful site, constructive criticism is welcome. Flames like "this sucks" without telling me why it sucks will be ignored. Please review so I know if you want me to continue.

Disclaimer: Whatever you see in the show does not belong to me. However, the characters that I have made up do.

A couple of things:

1. If you see any writing errors (spelling, grammar) in any of my stories let me know. I hate reading stories with botched techniques, so I refuse to write like that.

2. I may be using characters of my own creation in multiple stories. Don't panic. The plots will NOT be connected unless I say otherwise. I'm just too lazy to make up new people each time.

3. I'll stick to the knowledge of the show as close as possible. If I do something different I will tell you. We're up to the Christmas one here in Australia.

4. I hate the animation in Season Two, so when I describe stuff I'll have Season One in mind. Except for the body shape of Jake's dragon from. Think of a blend between the two forms.

About this story

1. Rose is Huntsmaster's niece. The dynamics will work with this plot.

2. Rotwood did catch Jake in Season One, but didn't make the connection with him to the dragon when he walked out of the truck. So The Rotwood Files in Season Two never happened.

3. Jake's about 16 in this fic.

A Race to Protect

Chapter 1: Unconscious on the Roof

It was a warm spring evening in New York. Inside an apartment building on the top floor, a father was preparing dinner for his wife and three kids. He opened the cupboard, pulled out a large pan and set it on the stove. He proceeded to raid the fridge's crisper for vegetables and started to chop the onions finely. The muffled noise from the rest of the family in the other room was quickly silenced as a loud crash was heard from above.

The man stopped chopping and looked up in annoyance. Bloody racoons. I'll have to get Animal Control in to set more traps. Again. Why his neighbours continued to put their garbage on the roof where animals could make a mess of it he never really understood.

"Molly," Michael called to his spouse, "Can you grab the torch and shoo those masked bandits off. I'm cooking dinner."

He heard the front door open and shut. Hopefully they hadn't knocked over another used grease bin. He had a yelling match with the guy who had dumped the stuff there.

The door opened again, "So," he asked her, "How many? Just one? Or a whole pack like last month?" Silence. Michael turned around to see why he wasn't answered and was stunned to see Molly pale and shaking. Her green eyes were wide and frightened; she seemed too shocked to move. Worried, he put down the knife. He walked over to her and cupped he chin in his hand. Molly had never looked this shaken, and she had faced a feral Great Dane for God's sake! Michael kept his voice as calm as he could. "Molly. Talk to me, dear. Did one of those overgrown rats bite you?" Snapped out of her daze, she looked as though she had seen a ghost and wasn't sure if he would believe her.

"No, Mic. I'm fine. …But it's not a raccoon. Y-you should come and see this. I-I don't know what it is. Well…I know what it looks like, but that's not possible."

Before he could ask what it (whatever 'it' was) looked like, she dashed back down the floor's hall, towards the door to the roof. Michael followed. When they reached the roof, Molly handed him the flashlight and pointed around the corner.

"It's around there. Near Tom's cans, on the opposite wall. You can't miss it." The courage she had gotten from her husband had worn off. Obviously, she wasn't going anywhere near the creature.

Michael held the light in front of him and quietly moved toward the corner of the structure. When he got there he stopped and listened. Hearing nothing, he stuck his head around. His wife was right. Next to the disturbed paint cans lay something. Something big. Swallowing hard, he shone the light towards whatever the big thing was. Giving a small shriek in shock, he dropped the flashlight and scrambled back behind the corner.

"It's still there, isn't it?" Michael jumped. Molly must have followed him to the corner. He tried to calm his racing heart while nodding. Carefully, the shaken man listened again. Still hearing no movement, he motioned to his wife to stay where she was as he peeked around the corner again. The flashlight had landed with the light on the large animal. The light bounced off the red scales and illuminated the whole body. It was lying on its side, back up against the wall. Its mouth was open, revealing sharp white teeth and a forked tongue. The long body ended in an equally long red tail, curled back up towards the head with green spines run—

"It's injured." Michael jumped for the second time that night. Giving Molly a dirty look for scaring him, he opened his mouth to ask what the hell she was talking about.

The woman pointed to the back leg of the big lizard-like animal. Michael still refused to call it what he thought it looked like.

She was right, though. In its right leg protruded some sort of massive dart, making a small trickle of blood run down the leg and onto the concrete. The man also realised it seemed to be unconscious and its breathing was shallow.

Realising the creature was hurt, Molly's womanly instincts must have kicked in. That was the only conclusion the man could come up with to explain what happened next.

She slowly walked around the corner and carefully put her hand on the wounded leg and started to stroke it. As Mic got closer he heard the love of his life cooing to the massive beast.

"There, there. Nothings gonna hurt you." Raising her voice a little and turning her head towards him, she continued. "Mic. Go get one of the kids to call the vet…No, wait. Scratch that. Get them to call Annie. He doesn't look too good."

Annie was the local animal expert and a long time friend. She wasn't technically a vet, but she could pass off as one if she wanted to. Not sure whether to leave his wife up here with that thing, he hesitated. She made a shooing motion with her hand. "Go. I don't think he'll get up anytime soon."

Racing back to the door he almost ran over his two eldest boys. After arguing over who was going to call Annie, the youngest, Jordan, lost. Whining about being hungry, he trudged back inside. "So what'd ya find, Dad?" the older boy asked.

Too impatient to wait for his father's response he scamped across the roof to see for himself. Panicked that he might get hurt, Mic quickly followed.

"Josh, be careful. He could wake up." He didn't have to worry because when he got there Josh was a few feet away from the beast, mouth open and eyes as wide as saucers. The young are always said to be more open to the strange and unbelievable than the adults. His 12-year-old son was no exception.

"Cool. A dragon! Can we keep him? Please, pleeaasseee." Shaking off his stupor the kid ran up to the creature…the dragon, took the massive head in his hands and opened its mouth wider so he could have a better look. "Do ya think it breaths fire? 'Cause that'd be sooo cool!"

Getting over her son's unfazed reaction to the thing that shouldn't even exist, Molly planted her feet, put her hands on her hips and scolded him in a crisp voice.

"Of cause we can't keep him. He could belong to someone. And where, pray tell, do you think we can keep something that big. Besides, he's wounded, so get off him. You could make it worse." Pouting, the boy put the head back on the ground and sat down about a foot away from it.

Mic sighed. Between his overprotective wife and curious children, not to mention Annie's questions when she showed up, it was going to be a long night.