WOW…It has been a long time. Let's see, has it really been a whole year? Nah…probably not. Any who, after a long bout of having forgotten my password, and then realizing I can just reset it by email, here I am.

Vaarsuvius, as ever deep in thought, tilted her head to the side. "And why, is that? I bested you in a magical duel. It truly seems that is untimely vengeance is completely unwarranted."

Zz'drti's eyes narrowed. "That was no contest of magic." He sneered, "You found a loophole. And yet, as arrogant as ever, you claimed the victory as yours. This next time, a clean victory is impossible. The "glorified reptilian" isn't coming for any blasé reason. She wants her own vengeance, and we made an agreement."

Before continuing, Zz'drti cast a glance at the sky. Simple instinct caused Vaarsuvius to glance upwards at the same moment, her view drawn to the unseen.

She looked about once more. "Perhaps he only saw a bird? Or that blasted imp again." She murmured, unsure herself. "Gods above," She thought, "Am I really that naïve?"

Zz'drti glanced at Vaarsuvius, and then turned back to the sky. His eyes glowed a cold green, and arcane runes flew across his scimitar. As quickly as they had come, they vanished again. A thin smile spread across the drow's normally blank features.

"It seems that my dracus ally is close. A simple divination brought me the answer. One most likely too complicated for yourself."

Vaarsuvius willed herself to hold back a comment. She was not accustom to a situation where she was helpless.

Yet before her tired and stressed mind was overpowered by her mouth, Zz'drti spun, swiping her forehead with the flat of a scimitar. She doubled over with pain, as stars spun through her vision. She let slip a gasped breath of surprise. Without even slowing himself, Zz'drti knocked his elbow into her shoulder, sending her spinning to the ground. He reached over to the rock where it lay, and threw her spellbook down to the sand, beside her crumpled form. Vaarsuvius could not help but whimper in pain, and she could feel anger, hot and terrible, spread through her form.

"Prepare yourself, Vaarsuvius." Zz'drti whispered, eying his swords. He reached into his pack, a few feet away, and drew out a whetstone.

In a dazed state, Vaarsuvius lifted her head and called out. "For what reason?"

Zz'drti gave her a glare of pure contempt, and then rested himself on an outcropping from the main rock of the small island. He began sharpening the scimitar, issuing forth a rasping grate and the stone was pulled across the cold iron.

Zz'drti did not even glance up from his work as he spoke, his voice an icy whisper, as was accustom. "Dragons are the greatest of mages, and it was from them that the elves first learned of the arcane. Thus, I have contacted the dragon in question, one with as much a reason to despise you as myself, if not even more. She will be the judge of our duel."

Vaarsuvius scrabbled to her knees. "A duel? Once more?"

Zz'drti gave her a cold hiss. "Yes. And this time, no loopholes, no escape, no comrades, and no damned lawyers there to stop me from regaining my dignity and killing you." His voice rose to almost a scream as he ended. His features literally melded, his mouth opening unnaturally wide, sharp teeth glistening. As soon as the dread visage had appeared, it was gone, and Zz'drti resumed his work.

"By the great elven gods…" Varsuvius breathed, "I have never seen such a corruption. And from magic no less…"

A cold terror began to spread through her chest and to her limbs. This was not something she believed she could fight alone. And yet she must. Eyes cast in a defiant glow, Vaarsuvius clutched up her spellbook. She would try, and fight for her life, if this was to be. Every shred of what she knew must go into this endeavor.

And that, was when the dragon landed.

I'm sorry if it isn't up to par. I wrote it in only an hour, just because I wanted to have something finished. Now that I'm back in the swing of it though, I can hopefully write a page or two for this every month. Expect another update (with all luck…I am a little busy) sometime this week or the next.