The Dragon's Distrust
a
disadvantage.
    “But,” Phillip continued, “We refused.
We cannot control our beasts when the full moon calls us. We could
injure innocents—children, women…We live in the forest for a
reason. We cannot control ourselves. It is best to stay far away
from civilization. I’m sure you understand.”
    “Not really. I keep all my faculties
when I shift,” he paused and stared at Phillip who looked down at
the ground dejectedly, “But sometimes the animal can be difficult
to control in certain situations.”
    The remark drew a soft smile on
Phillip’s face, “Then you understand why we had to say
no.”
    “I do. Although, I would never agree to
any terms Polas would give.”
    “Agreed. That man is a menace. He hunts
anything that is different.”
    “He especially hunts
dragons.”
    “Yes, he does. He even asked the elves
for their help. I don’t know what they decided. Filthy
half-breeds…”
    No one in the realm was fond of the
Elves. The dragons were indifferent. Dragons had kept to themselves
to avoid any situation that might lead them to Polas. Stephan
merely shrugged, “Is that why you were imprisoned? Because you
would not aid Polas?”
    He nodded, “Yes. He knew who was a
werewolf because of the blasted full moon. A few of my kin worked
in the Keep. Lydia over there was Tania’s girl at one point. They
did unspeakable things to her.”
    “Who?”
    “The guards. Polas was never involved,
of course, keeping his hands clean while he delighted in my kin’s
misery. Poor Lydia,” Phillip glanced over at the girl who was
barely skin and bones, “she was tortured the worst. Her
screams…dear Avalar…her screams. I can still hear them,” he looked
back toward Patryck, “Let me take care of my kin like I should have
done. I am eternally grateful for your aid.”
    Stephan took a deep breath, “How will
you help them?”
    “Once they shift, they will become
better. We can heal in wolf form just as you can in
yours.”
    Stephan kept quiet. Dragons could heal
in man form, as well. But it was best not to allow secrets to go
running about. In the wrong hands, secrets were dangerous. Besides,
only a few dragons could heal in man form. Stephan was one of
them.
    Stephan stroked his chin, “Yes, they
need to be with you and the rest of your pack. You say Lydia was
Princess Tania’s girl?”
    Phillip nodded.
    Stephan’s mind was thinking quickly.
Perhaps Lydia knew more of Tania and of Tania’s mother. She could
be a valuable asset, “How long had Lydia been a girl of
Tania’s?”
    Phillip shrugged, “Lydia worked in the
castle all her life, before Tania was born. What of it?”
    “Do you know if Tania and Lydia were
close?”
    “Lydia did mention Tania on several
occasions, so probably.”
    “You may be aware that Tania is now in
the company of dragons. She lives with us. I think she may be
getting lonely for female friendship. I would like to keep Lydia so
that Tania can have a girlfriend once again.”
    Phillip shook his head, “I’m afraid
that’s out of the question. I need all members of my
pack.”
    Stephan glanced at the sun that barely
peeked over the western rise. He was not impulsive, but he
desperately needed answers and Lydia may provide him with some. He
was about to shift and take off with Lydia in tow but a sudden
thought made him pause, “You despise Polas as much as we
do?”
    “We hate the rotten bastard,” he
snarled.
    “How would you feel about an alliance
with dragons?”
    Phillip cocked his head, “Polas has all
but destroyed you.”
    “True, but the ones remaining will keep
remaining. We mean to end Polas’ reign once and for all. It will
benefit you to side with us. We will go to war—a war of such
magnitude that it will be spoken of and written down for ages to
come. But we need allies. We are making a stand, Phillip, and I ask
you to stand with us.”
    Phillip looked thoughtful, “Polas needs
to die. I agree with you in that. But you are asking a great deal
of my
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