"A child, here alone?"
It was an unsettling thought to see such a young child alone, and even worse with the goblins and sorcerers wandering around in their small armies.
The dragon lifted her head at the sound of something coming closer. It was a deep rumbling, somewhere within the canyons.
"But I'm not alone. Golem is with me," the child said.
"Golem? How does a child earn the respect of a Golem?"
"I gave him all my time."
"Do you mean to say you've made a pact with such a creature?"
"He said he'd be my friend and since Mother's…gone…"
Caim looked from the dragon to Seere, and then past him to see the Golem making its way towards them. It was the first friendly one they had seen in their travels. Of course, it wasn't the fault of the Golems, but rather, the fault of the sorcerers using them to their own advantages.
"Seere found," Golem said, reaching a hand down to the child for him to step up onto.
"We can't leave yet, Golem," Seere said. The Golem looked offended for a moment, pulling its hand back.
Looking back at Caim, Seere said, "So, you're going to where the Cult is? Let us go with you. Please!"
Caim took a step back and looked up at the dragon as Seere hurried over to him. He dropped to his knees in front of him and stared up.
"My sister's there!"
"Your sister?" the dragon said.
"They took her away, to where the Cult is. Manah. My sister, Manah. Please!" He looked desperate.
"Seere sad. Seere miss sister," Golem said.
"That's right, Golem," Seere said, nodding. "I want to find her. It's my fault that she was always…always…it was my fault she was never happy."
"How is her happiness your burden?"
"Because of Mother. Mother only loved me, only me. She hated Manah." He stared at the ground.
The dragon and Caim looked at each other for a moment, in silent communication.
"Let us go then," the dragon said. "If you say your sister is truly with the Empire, then there's no reason for you not to come with us. It's far too dangerous here for you to be alone."
"But I'm not—"
"Golem can not protect you by himself."
Seere stood and bowed to the dragon. "Alright. Thank you!" He bowed again. "Thank you so much!"
The dragon allowed the others to go in front of her, going to the other end of the path where Leonard and Arioch were waiting.
"Caim," the dragon said. He stopped and turned to face her.
"Why did you allow him to come with us? It's unusual of you."
He shrugged and turned away from her.
"I pray you do not come to regret it. How can you relate to someone of his age, and to his plight, if you cannot relate to people at all?"
Caim kept his back to her but didn't move. The more time he spent with the dragon, the more her harsh words had started to sting him.
"What a sweet child, so cute…"
"Will she ever stop?" the dragon said. "Come. Before she puts a knife to his throat."