The four musketeer girls were enjoying their lunch break.
Corinne leaned back into the soft grass "It's not every day it's quiet like this."
Viveca nodded in agreement "Days like this make you glad you're a musketeer."
Corinne laughed "I thought being a musketeer was about fighting to protect the royal family and town."
"Not to Viveca." Renee said "To her, it's about seeing how many functional outfits can be created."
"Shh." Aramina said silently "Soak in the silence."
All four girls jumped to their feet.
"It's just old man Jasper." Renee groaned sitting back down.
Jasper was the town's trouble maker. He was known for his wild tales and ironic ideas.
Monsieur Treville intercepted the old man.
The girls watched as Jasper tried to explain something, while using wild hand gestures.
Treville nodded, assuring the man he'd take care of it. Then he led Jasper away.
"Poor old man." Aramina said shaking her head "It must be hard to be nuts."
"He made himself nuts." Renee chuckled "Not enough attention."
"Treville!" Corinne called to the captain "What was that about?"
Treville shook his head "He said he saw a dragon."
"A dragon?" the four girls asked in unison. Then they started laughing.
"Last month it was a flying cow." Renee said rolling her eyes.
"What are you going to do?" Aramina asked.
"What I always do." Trevilla answered, readjusting his hat "Ignore it."
"But isn't that failure to listen to cries of the people?" Corinne asked.
Treville shook his head "Not when it involves Jasper. Everyone knows he's a nut."
Later that afternoon while they were helping Helene clean the castle, Corinne slipped into the throne room.
"Hey Louis?" she said, spotting him by a window "Can I ask you something?"
Louis smiled and nodded "Of course."
"Do you believe anything Jasper tells you?"
"No." Louis chuckled "Most of it's nonsense." he pointed to a desk in the far left corner "He told me my pen was going to come alive and eat me last week."
They both laughed at the thought.
"Well, today, he said he saw a dragon."
Louis raised his eyebrows and looked at her "I see." he thought a second "I wouldn't believe it."
"I don't." Corinne said quickly so he wouldn't think she was going crazy "I was just wondering if there's a chance of Jasper ever telling the truth."
Louis shrugged "My guess. No. And even if he did, no one would believe him. He's got a bigger reputation than the boy who cried wolf."
Corinne chuckled "All that for a little bit of attention."
"I knew it!" Viveca squealed.
Corinne spun towards the door to see her three friends peeking in.
Renee shook her head "Tsk tsk tsk." she teased "Skipping out on your chores?"
Corinne's face flamed "No! I was just…"
"Come on." Aramina pushed the door wide open "We have work to finish."
Louis chuckled softly behind her "I'd run if I were you."
Corinne walked towards the door and past her friends.
The three girls laughed as they watched their friend go around a corner. Then they looked back in at Louis and curtsied "Your Majesty."
"Girls." Louis nodded, then watched them disappear.
"So what were you doing?" Renee asked mischievously.
"Asking the king a question." Corinne answered, dusting off a picture.
"You mean, asking Louis a question." Viveca corrected.
"What is with you three?" Corinne asked "You act as if I'm keeping a secret."
"Are you?" Aramina stepped towards her slowly.
"Absolutely not." Corinne couldn't help but smile. Her friends could be crazy sometimes.
Suddenly there was a loud banging on the door.
"I got it!" Corinne called, sitting down on the stair railing and sliding. Once her feet hit the polished floor, she slid all the way to the door.
"Yes?" she said as she opened it.
"Help!" A distraught woman screamed "There's a dragon!"
Corinne groaned "You too?"
"Jasper told me!" the woman continued.
Corinne looked back at Louis who had just joined her at the door "I thought you said no one believed him."
Louis shrugged "There's always a select few."
"Are you going to help me?" The woman asked, blinking quickly.
Corinne suppressed a sigh as she pulled a notebook out of her pocket "Of course."
She heard Louis laugh as he left her to play her little game "What did the dragon look like?"
"It was large and green!" The woman said emphatically "It had great razor sharp teeth and a vast tail with huge spikes!"
Corinne snuck a peek up the stairs at her friends and smiled her blue eyes sparkling. This was getting fun.
"And what else do you know about him?" she asked.
The woman panted from talking so fast "He's got four giant feet! With ginormous claws! And enormous horns!"
What Corinne was really doing, was writing down how many different words the lady could thinking up for the word "Big" without actually saying it.
"And the fire he breathed was immense!" the lady continued "And he had a whopping roar! And his wings were massive! All in all, he was Supergiganticousmamothlyvast !"
"Do what?" Corinne asked, her eyebrows raising.
"We're all going to parish!" the woman screamed as she ran away.
"Okay." Corinne shook her head as she kicked the door closed.
At the top of the stairs, her friends erupted into laughter.
"The longer I'm in Paris, the more concerned I become." she rejoined her friends.
Renee patted her on the back "Well done, My friend."
Corinne looked at her notepad "Eleven words for big that I hardly ever think about."
Viveca shook her head "Some people are plain loony."
Then they got back to work.
The next morning, another distraught person came to the door claiming to have seen a dragon.
"It was purple!"
Renee quirked an eyebrow "Purple?"
And over the next four days, they got six "eyewitness" accounts of these dragons.
The girls plopped down on their beds "If I hear the word 'Dragon' one more time, I'm going to scream." Renee huffed.
"Dragon." Corinne laughed as Renee shot her one of her killer looks.
Viveca was looking through her own notebook "So we have dragons that are, green, purple, orange, red, turquoise, yellow, and dark midnight blue."
Corinne laid down on her bed "Everyone's saying they're in the west woods. How about tomorrow we ask Treville if we can go investigate?"
Viveca nodded "Yeah. Then we can put an end to this nonsense."
"Agreed." Aramina nodded.
So the next morning the girls confronted Treville with their plan.
Treville nodded "Would you? I've been trying to get some of the men to, but…"
The girls laughed "We'll mount up right away."
Louis looked out the window and saw the girls mounting on their horses.
"Where are they going?" he wondered. Then he headed for the door "Corinne!" he called as soon as he reached the door.
"Yes?" she turned to look at him.
"Where are you going?"
"To the West Woods." the girl answered, ignoring the looks she was getting from her friends "We're going to go put an end to these dragon stories."
Louis nodded slowly "Be careful."
"Aren't I always?" she teased as she slapped the reins, and the four girls rode away.
"I wish." Louis mumbled, then he went back into the castle.
"The king is worried about you." Aramina teased.
Corinne decided to ignore the remark as they rode towards their destination.
They all grew quiet as they entered the dense woods.
"Let's leave the horses here." Renee suggested.
The others nodded and dismounted. Then they walked a little further.
"Look at that!" Aramina squealed.
The others spun around, only to see her pointing at a patch of bright yellow roses.
"What!?" Renee sputtered "You scared the living daylights out of me because of some roses?!"
"Look at those odd rocks in the middle." Viveca said pointing "Those are neat."
"They're just rocks!" Renee shouted, becoming more and more frustrated.
Corinne chuckled as she turned to look around a bit. She thought she saw something move a few yards in front of her. Her eyes grew wide and she stepped back until she bumped into Renee.
"What's up?" Renee asked, not turning to look at her.
"Uh…" Corinne said slowly "Did those reports say anything about a… uh… black dragon?"
"Nope." Viveca answered, still looking at the roses.
"Oh boy." Corinne said nervously "Now I'm worried."
"Why?" Renee asked.
Corinne chuckled lamely "See for yourself."
The other three girls turned around, their mouths falling open as the form of a huge black dragon stood up on his hind legs.
"You know." Corinne said, continuing to back up "I preferred him on all fours."
The dragon loomed above them. His red eyes flashing with anger from being disturbed. Smoke was pouring out of his nostrils and his snake-like tongue flicked in and out of his mouth.
"Someone, pinch me." Renee swallowed "Quickly. Before I'm killed in my sleep."
Aramina whimpered "I don't wanna die!"
Corinne clamped her hands over Aramina's mouth "Sh! Of we walk away slowly, maybe she won't hurt us."
"And what makes you think it's a she?" Renee demanded.
Corinne pointed to the rocks in the rose bed behind them "I think those are her eggs."
"Oh." the other three said, and they slowly started inching away from the dragon.
Aramina suddenly poked Corinne "Please tell me that's not her tail."
Corinne looked over to where Aramina was pointing. A large black, spiked tail was laying in their path. There was no where to go, there were thick bushes of venom filled thorns surrounding the paths.
"We are so doomed." Renee said.
Corinne gulped "You know. I think I agree with you on this one." she continued to look up the extent of the huge animal "That dragon is definitely Supergiganticousmamothlyvast ."
The other four eyed her warily. They were officially trapped.
Back at the castle, Louis was worried. Not that he believed in dragons or anything, it was just that robbers and muggers lived in those woods.
He walked over to the window that faced towards the west. His mouth dropped open as he saw a massive dragon head appear over top of the trees. It kept raising up until he could see it's front legs.
"Treville." he called weakly "TRAVILLE!"
"Yes, Your Majesty?" Treville asked as he ran into the room.
Louis pointed out the window.
Treville stared "Jasper was right!"
Louis spun around to face the captain of the musketeers "Corinne's in there! So are her three friends!"
Treville paled immediately "What can we do? If I send in an army, it might provoke it to breath fire!"
Louis face palmed "What are we going to do?"
Treville shrugged, feeling deflated "The only thing we can do. Wait and hope."
Corinne and her three friends were standing in a small circle not moving. They were afraid to even breath!
They watched as the dragon's tail slowly curled around them.
"This is more uncomfortable than being surrounded by a hundred men with machetes!" Renee said.
They heard the dragon give off a low moan. The front of her body lifted into the air a bit, then it hit the ground with a thud.
Corinne looked up at the dragon curiously. She watched as the dragon's color went from black, to dark blue.
"Wow." she mumbled softly.
"We're gonna die!" Aramina wailed.
The dragon's color turned back black, then slowly started turning red.
"Aramina! Hush!" Corinne pleaded.
After several minutes of silence, the dragon's color turned back blue.
"Something's wrong." Corinne said.
"Yeah." Viveca said sarcastically "We're surrounded by a dragon's tail!" she blew some hair out of her face "My dress is getting filthy."
Corinne watched as the dragon ascended into the air again, then hit the ground.
"Vivi." she said "Do you have your E.S.K?" which stood for emergency sewing kit.
"Of course." Viveca pulled it out of her pocket "Never leave home without it."
"Good." with that, the blond girl jumped up onto the dragon's tail.
"What are you doing?" the other three called shocked.
"Just stay quiet." Corinne said, slowing crawling up the tail "Or better yet, start singing a lullaby."
"She's nuts!" Aramina whispered, but she slowly started singing, hush little baby.
Corinne slowly crept up the dragon's back, using her scales as leverage.
Then she saw it's wings. They had to be a hundred feet wide at least! She looked over at the left one. There was a large tear in it that went nearly halfway through the wing.
"Oh you poor thing." she said softly "I'm getting you help right now."
Then she slid down the dragon's back, and landed beside her friends laughing.,
"That was fun!"
"You are nuts!" Renee said exasperated.
"I know." Corinne said, grabbing Viveca's hand "Come on y'all. She needs help."
Viveca pulled back terrified "Are you..?"
"Nuts?" Corinne finished "We'll see, won't we."
With a sigh, the three girls followed Corinne back up the dragon.
"See." Corinne pointed to the wing.
"Aw!" the other three exclaimed softly "The poor thing!"
"Do you think you have enough thread Vivi?" Corinne asked.
"I'll make there be enough!" Viveca determined as she stepped over to where the wing was laying against the side of the beast.
She pulled out a long piece of thread and a needle. Then, slightly shaking, she approached the top of the tear.
When the needle first went into the wing, the dragon spun around and looked at them. Her nostrils just inches from Aramina's face.
The red head slowly reached out and patted the dragon's nose "It's okay girl."
The dragon calmed under her touch.
Corinne sent her a thumbs up, and smiled.
Renee turned from Viveca's sewing process "Ooh! I can't watch anymore!"
Corinne chuckled. It surprised her how fast Viveca was sewing the cut. It took three hours before she was finally done. Then she took some fabric clue and ran it over the whole extent of the stitches "That should hold it till it's healed." she said with a nod.
Corinne stepped over to the dragon's head and rubbed her nose "You should be all better now."
The dragon flapped her wings and rose up in the air a bit. The girls grabbed onto her scales to keep from falling off.
The dragon landed again, then with a happy moan looked back at the girls.
Then she scooped up her eggs and placed them in a pouch in her stomach.
The girls started to slide off, but the dragon raised them back up and placed them on her neck.
Then with a few flaps of her wings, they rose high into the air.
The girls watched in amazement as her scales turned a brilliant white.
They rose up above the clouds and soared over the town.
"So this is what Paris looks like from the clouds." Viveca whispered.
"Corinne." Renee said "Your description wasn't even close."
Corinne laughed as she slowly got to her knees and then stood up.
The feeling of the air rushing all around her was amazing!
"Look!" Aramina squealed "There's the castle!"
"And Louis!" Corinne added with a laugh.
Louis and Treville had been watching the woods for hours, hoping everything would be okay. Then they'd watched as the beast had risen into the air.
"Look!" Louis cried "The girls!"
"Are riding it?" Treville said, incredulously.
"Amazing." Louis said watching the girls soar around town on top of the dragon.
"Come on!" Treville said "They're heading for the terrace!"
The two men ran up the stairs and out onto the bridge, just as the dragon landed.
The girls crawled off the top of her head laughing.
"That was amazing!" Corinne gushed.
"Utterly incredible!" Renee added.
"Are y'all alright?" Louis asked anxiously.
The four girls nodded "Oh yes!"
Corinne turned back to the dragon and hugged it's nose "Thank you."
The dragon growled softly. Then she took four scales from her tail and laid them on the bridge. They scales sparkled an shrunk. They all watched in amazement as gold chains appeared around them, turning them into beautiful necklaces.
Viveca reached down and picked up the four necklaces "These are so fashionable!"
The dragon changed colors and they watched as the necklaces changed with her.
"Thank you!" Renee smiled, patting the dragon "We will never forget you!"
The dragon backed up slowly. Then with five flaps of her powerful wings, she was out of sight.
The four girls hugged. That would be an adventure they would never forget!