Silence enveloped them. Sam didn't dare to even take a breath in fear of what the dragon would do when he exited his astonished state.
That damned book wanted her dead. That was the only logical explanation she could come up with. She had asked it specifically how to get out of this situation alive. Any chance of that had thrown itself out the window.
Smaug was still trying to piece together what had happened. His treasure, every last coin had vanished into thin air. His keen eyes searched for any sign of gold or shine, not even a fleck was left in the great treasure room. His attention turned back to the girl responsible when she took a step back to create distance between them.
With a roar that shook the very mountain, Smaug yanked her from the ground and shook her in his grasp.
"Thief!" He roared. Rage poured off of him in waves, his eyes blazing like the flames he would undoubtedly unleash upon her quivering form.
She screamed when he gripped her even tighter. It was surprising that Sam had not completely snapped in half in his grip. Frantic thoughts of anything that could save her flashed through her mind, but she could not find any, if this continued though she would surely breathe her last. After another painful squeeze, she screamed the first idea that came to mind.
"If you kill me, you will never see any of it ever again!" She blurted. That was it! All he wanted was the gold, right? A deal was her last hope, threats would make him even more angry, but what else could she do?
"Silence! You dare threaten me!" Smaug bellowed. The tip of his snout was pressed right up to her face, smothering her in his heated, foul breath.
"Kill me and it's gone forever." She repeated. Another earth-shaking roar tore through the chamber, but it seemed to have the desired effect. His grip loosened as he regained some composure.
He regarded her suspiciously. "And what would you have me do in return? Let you live?"
"That would be ideal, yes." She wheezed. "If you promise to let me live, I will return every last coin and jewel." He growled revealing to her his pointed teeth.
"Very well..." He set her down onto the floor, the moment her feet scraped the stone he positioned himself so that one massive amber eye watched every movement she made. Slowly and carefully she inched to her fallen book. She nearly threw the thing when she saw what was already scrawled across the pages.
Use the same actions in reverse.
You are welcome.
'I'm gonna burn this thing.'
With a wave of her hand and the magic word in mind, the vast fields of gold reappeared. One second there was nothing, the next the soft gold light filtered through the halls once more. Smaug's attention left her completely as he rejoiced in his wealths return.
Her gaze flicked to an opening just past his left leg. Gingerly she crept over the stone and onto the gold, she knew that he could hear her footsteps despite her best attempts at silence.
"All right, everything's back in place, your happy, I'm not dead, and now I'll just be on my way." She was so close! Just a few more steps and this nightmare would be over! His tail dropped right into her path though, when she made to move past him.
"I said I would spare your pathetic life, not that you would leave here."
Sam gaped at the beast. She had been so focused on self preservation, she hadn't bargained for her freedom! Before she could make a mad dash his tail coiled around her legs and lifted her into the air and tipped her up side down, causing not only her book to fall but her sword and bag were jostled off her body.
"I'm getting really tired of being man-handled!" She beat at his tail knowing that it wouldn't change anything, she just needed to hit something! He slithered over his gold, rudely dropped her back into the cell, locked the door, and turned away as if nothing had happened.
She clambered up and gripped the metal bars. "So you're just going to let me sit in here!?" Death sounded better than that. He snarled at her tone of voice.
"I would grant you death if I were not a dragon of my word. For the return of what is mine, I will not kill you. You will spend the rest of your days here..."
"Doing what exactly!"
He contemplated this for a moment. There really was no purpose in keeping her here. The only thing of value was the jewel around her throat and he could not touch it. While it was not ideal, he could not let her leave now. Just then a wicked, cruel thought entered his mind.
"You will serve as entertainment," he grinned. "Yes, there must be something you can do that will serve to amuse me." Not even sparing her another glance he turned to leave. "Oh, and should you be foolish enough to enchant my riches again, I will break your bones."
"But!" Completely ignoring her he stormed up a huge pile of treasure and out of her sight.
Five days had passed and neither was happy about the new arrangement.
The first day had not gone over lightly. Smaug had slithered over the mountain of gold and stared at her critically while she was running her clawed fingers through her fluffed tail and feeling her pointed doggy ears. His stare was intense, making her extremely uncomfortable.
"What." She finally asked.
He hummed for a moment and narrowed an eye. "Amuse me."
One eyebrow quirked at his demand.
Smaug simply glared at her expectantly. "You will do as your master commands."
She growled at him and curled farther into the far corner of the cell.
Her body was extremely sore from the events of the day before, any movement caused extreme discomfort and pain. She had woken up to find bruises lining her entire body and a pounding in her skull.
He had not taken it lightly. However, instead of yelling and thrashing her about, he refused to give her any food or water. In her stubbornness she simply turned her nose up at him and faced the wall.
And that was how the first day went.
The second and third day had not been any better. Smaug returned again and Sam refused him each time. On the fourth day though she had faltered, she didn't completely ignore him that time. Sam was hungry, parched, and exhausted. It unnerved her to have the predator so close, the stress of it was frying her nerves, but one thing remained in her hunger clouded mind. She could not fight the curiosity growing within her. Dragons were nothing but fairy tales back home, and now she had a real live dragon not even one hundred feet away! So on the fourth day she studied him.
He really was a sight to behold. And now that she really looked, she could see grand jewels and gold embedded into his belly and scales. His ruby red scales mixed with the light of the gold gave him a regal shimmer every time he moved. Even with his wings folded they were still massive, they had to be to keep his bulk airborne. It must be nice to be able to fly. The closest she had ever been to flying was when she jumped the broken bridge in Dale. It wasn't flying though.
"I'd like to fly..." She mumbled. In her disoriented state she failed to notice his silent staring.
He had been surprised. She had not made any move to communicate with him other than angry snarls whenever he got to close.
Smaug wasn't sure exactly why he hadn't killed her. He could have forced her to return his precious gold, but he hadn't even thought of it when the deal had been struck. He had been too furious to think rationally at the time.
Now, while the great dragon had a temper, he hadn't been nearly as quick to show such blinded rage as when he was a young and brash drake. Even in such a shocking situation, the completely unbridled rage was more than he had experienced in quite some time.
This human, this girl was able to break his calm and bring about the same impulsiveness he had quelled after maturing into the great tyrant he was now, and did so in the span of an afternoon. Most would be reduced to sniveling wrecks at the sight of him, yet this girl was stupid enough to take a stand and take his most precious possessions. He had never come across such magic. Even the great wizards did not have such abilities.
It seemed that his withdrawal of sustenance was succeeding though. Dark circles and drooping eyelids showed her exhaustion plainly. Her pointed ears drooped against her skull barely twitching in acknowledgement any longer. Hunger and thirst clouded her mind to the point that she didn't even take notice of him. Not once though did she beg, nor did she try to bargain for anything. Any human would have gone mad with thirst alone by now, yet she lay flat on her stomach, head resting on her crossed arms just staring at him.
It was puzzling. Her eyes were glazed over but she seemed to study him intently. He was meant to analyze her. She was his new pet after all. She should have been elated to be the recipient of such an honor, she should have been begging to serve him by now. This creature was stubborn though.
The first time she had spoken in four days had caught him off guard. Well as off guard as Smaug could be. No pleas for food or water, only a simple thought.
"What?" He hissed . At his question she snapped back to awareness and quickly rolled over.
"Do not turn your back on me!" He snarled.
"Well I just did."
She licked her dry, cracked lips. On the fifth day of this torture Sam knew that if she went any longer without water, her body would completely shut down. It was obvious that Smaug was just biding his time now, waiting for her to break and beg.
She had surprised him yet again though. Lounging not to far off in between sleep and awareness, he had not expected her soft, hoarse voice to bring him back to reality.
"What did you mean by 'spell'?" Thinking that if he said anything she would fall back into silence he regarded her with half lidded eyes.
She continued on, unaffected by his gaze. "Was it that weird feeling I got when I first saw you? Did that happen to you too?" Sam recalled the warmth and happiness that followed her first glimpse of Smaug. The question had been pressing on both of their minds, but neither was willing to discuss that strange meeting. It seemed like a moment of weakness that both were never going to share easily.
Sam went quiet for sometime after that. Her tired mind couldn't handle it anymore and while she could last due to her stubbornness alone, he didn't need to be sustained like she did. There was no way she could out last him. Sitting up and gripping the metal cell bars painfully reminded her of the coolness of water.
He snorted letting her know that he had heard her cracked voice.
"Can I have some water?" She sounded so innocent, so childlike, nothing like their first day together. The fire in her eyes was dimmed considerably by exhaustion, giving her a glassy, tired stare. No longer did her eyes shine like gems, they were glazed over and unaware.
Her current state displeased him, but the satisfaction of her succumbing to her most basic needs outweighed his distaste. "And what will you do to repay such a kindness?"
Averting her gaze she pressed he forehead against the metal. "I-I will do what you want."
"Will you now?" He couldn't hide the smugness and arrogance in his voice.
"Very well, pet." He sneered. He had won, boosting the knowledge of his greatness. Smaug left again, up the steep incline of treasure and out of sight. He was gone for some time causing Sam to question if he was actually telling the truth.
The dragon was back a few moments later, this time his jaw clenched tightly. She stepped back as his head descended upon her cell. A giant bowl filled to the brim with water was dropped in front of her, it was to big to fit through the bars though and was just barely out of reach.
She whimpered, staring at him desperately. "Please!"
He chuckled cruelly at her panicking form. "Who do you serve?"
Knowing that he wanted her to give in, to give him ownership over her kept her mouth sealed. The fire, while still dim, had returned to her demeanor. She glanced at the water again, it mocked her, so close but just out of reach! If only she could move it closer!
'Wait just a flippin' minute!' What did she have magic for if she wasn't going to use it!? While there wasn't much that she knew and her book was out of sight, there had to be something she could do. Instinctively her fingers felt the familiar power in her veins, she pulled at the liquid lifting it into a swaying stream that defied gravity. It flowed unlike earth had, earth and fire needed power and strength to control it easily, but water seemed simple, and smooth.
Smaug snarled and tried to knock the bowl away, but the water was already inside the cell and out of his reach. Falling back onto her backside she had the water flow past her parched lips and guzzled the liquid down greedily, loving the coolness of the drink running down her parched throat. Finally she gulped down the last drop and gasped for air.
She stood again, walked to the bars and pointed to his furious form.
"I serve myself you scaly ass."
He roared as his furnace like belly ignited, the fiery light seeping through his scales up his elongated neck. Turning his head he let loose the flames on a wall until the stone was blackened.
Sam had never witnessed something as fascinating and deadly as this. He could have lit her ass by now and save themselves the aggravation, but he purposefully moved away from her.
Without looking back he barreled up the gold and far off from the sound of his footfalls. She could hear his enraged roars in the distance and see the light of his flames.
Sam gripped at the bars pulling and banging against them before he came back. Strength and power pumped along with adrenaline as she pulled the two bars apart.
"Really?" She panted. "Five days I sat here and this is all I had to do?" She sprinted form her prison and searched for her belongings. It was only a matter of time before he returned ready to torture her again. Just a little ways away from the cell under a few coins was her bag followed by her sword and book. She strapped and secured everything and scrambled over the gold loosing her footing multiple times.
She tore out of the treasure room and into little opening under the staircases leading her in the opposite direction of the beast. She ran for what seemed like hours through every twist and turn, through grand halls and spectacular rooms never once looking behind her. At some point she picked up the scent of fresh crisp air, nothing like the heated smothering air in the treasure room.
She followed her nose until expertly carved stone became much more gnarled, huge claw marks were etched into the stone, beaten and cut into jagged edges. Darkness enveloped the space making Sam rely on her keen ears and nose, even with her improved vision it was still to dark. She walked quietly as the walls closed in slightly the darkened room became a hallway leading to the fresh scent of freedom.
Only when she was far enough into the hall for her liking did she conjure up a small flame in her hand. It flickered pleasantly allowing a little bit of light to guide the blue haired girl further through the darkness. She followed the hall until natural light began to stream through the hall. Seeing this she extinguished her flame and ran the rest of the distance only to find herself faced with a gaping hole where a wall should have been. Like the rest of the large passage it appeared to be dug out rather than carefully carved like the rest of the mountain.
The light she had seen was that of the moon. It hung high in the star laden sky signaling that it was the middle of the night. The soft shine of moonlight flooded over her form, giving her an unearthly glow.
Watching the glowing orb had done something to Sam that had already happened to recently. She had entered another trance, forgetting any idea of dragons, magic, and escape. The moon lulled her into dropping her guard, losing herself in the moonlight.
Only a ghostly howl broke the stillness of the night.
Smaug had stormed off not wanting to do anything he might later regret. After burning a section of wall some distance away from the creatures cell he had turned to his riches to calm the fury inside of him. He allowed coins and gems to slip past his talons over and over quelling his rage with every glint of treasure. He growled exasperatedly, some time had past since he last checked the girl, and he wanted nothing more than to break his new pet.
Gliding over his hoard with ease he rounded upon a now empty cell. A roar bubbled in his chest but stopped before the sound escaped him when he caught wind of a now very familiar scent. She had escaped her cell and found her way to the cliff, the only way out of the mountain. Swiftly he made his way through Erabor to the tunnel he had constructed after sealing all the other exits. He had only recently made it, about eighty years prior, so that he could gaze upon his lands with an entrance only he could get to. Soon after it's development he had sunk back into the mountain and slept a great deal of time away finding his lust for treasure greater than the view of his kingdom.
He silently crept down the path, his slitted eyes searching through the darkness for a familiar head of blue hair, listening for the smallest of sounds. After some time the quietness of the night was broken by the howl that had first pulled him to the girl.
Smaug caught sight of her as he neared the mouth of the cave, she sat on the ledge staring up at the moon. Her back was to him, the light of the moon shadowing her features.
He was about to growl and take her back into the mountain when a sweet voice filled the air.
Come Little Children
I'll Take Thee Away, Into A Land
Come Little Children
The Time's Come To Play
Here In My Garden
It was happening again. With each note Smaug felt his awareness slipping, the urge to drop his guard growing.
Follow Sweet Children
I'll Show Thee The Way
Through All The Pain And
Weep Not Poor Children
For Life Is This Way
Murdering Beauty And
He stumbled and swayed over to her wanting to be closer to the angelic sound.
Hush Now Dear Children
It Must Be This Way
Too Weary Of Life And
Rest Now My Children
For Soon We'll Away
into The Calm And
Smaug sank down beside her, pressing his head as close to her as possible. His body heat enveloped her immediately, driving off the bite of the cool autumn night.
Come Little Children
I'll Take Thee Away, Into A Land
Come Little Children
The Time's Come To Play
Here In My Garden
By the end of the last haunting note his eyes were half-lidded, a rumbling growl leaving his relaxed body. They stayed that way for a while longer, her staring at the moon and him watching her contently. The fog began to clear from his mind though, returning his focus and alertness.
He noticed her slumped shoulders and heavy breathing, signaling that she was asleep. Sighing again he rapped his tail around her body and made his way back through the grand halls of The Lonely Mountain. Back in the treasure hall he made his way back to the cell she had been occupying.
The cell bars had nearly been torn off by the looks of it. So this creature could not only use great magic but also had an abnormal amount of strength for a human, which added another question to the growing list.
What was she?
Well there's the new chapter! Hope you all enjoyed! By the way the song is titled, Come Little Children, and sung by Katethegreat19 on YouTube. I strongly suggest listening to it if you haven't!
Once again I own nothing but my own characters!