A Big Shiny Blue Marble Ch. 35


There was no reply and Copper looked back to find Yuan listening. "What joke should I make? I know none. I cannot see your hair. You wear that pot on your head and that, ... cloth." She referred to the insulated set of coveralls which Copper was wearing.

"Yeah well, you spend enough time inside one of these things and sooner or later, you'll about bash your brains out on something," Copper replied, "That's why I wear this helmet. I've got a nice scar on the back of my skull from trying to move from one position to another in here a little too quickly."

They didn't speak much for a while, other than Yuan's directions, and she spent a little time speaking with Simmit.

"Really Simmit, "she said in the demon's tongue, "what is wrong that cannot be mended?"

The demon's answer began as a lot of mumbling, bit Yuan was gentle and encouraged her.

"I like her," the demon said, "she was kind to me, but I ruined it. Where I am from, good males are rare and females are not shy to show how they feel and it is a blessing to find a friend who will help you with the work and who you can help as well. I am too shy. I could not show her when she was awake, and I could not stop myself at night. This is not done here I think, and I have lost a friend. Now, I wish to go where there are other demons. Maybe I will not ruin things there."

When their talk petered out, Copper cleared her throat.

"Uh, Yuan? I didn't ask and you never said, but are you alone out here? I mean, you have to live somewhere out here."

She looked back and Yuan nodded, "I was alone, but I begin to live with another now."

"A dragon?" The dwarf asked.

"Yes," Yuan replied, "One of a pair who came to be here in the same way that Simmit did. They are not from this world. They call themselves Wotroth, and that is their word for dragon, I guess."

Copper listened and ... well, she just couldn't help herself. "Are there any, ... well, are there any males? I'd really like to meet them, even if they're females, but I'd really like to see a male dragon just one time."

"The one I am with is a male," Yuan said, "though they are much smaller than I am, when we are in that shape. And you already have seen a male. I have three shapes. In one, I am as I began, a human female. Like this, I am some of both male and female. As I was when I flew here to meet you and Narreth, I am a male."

"Really?" Copper almost twisted her head off as she looked back, "That's a little strange."

"Yes," Yuan smiled coolly as she turned to look at the monitor, "it is very strange to be me sometimes."

"I'm sorry," Copper said, "I just blurted that out. I didn't mean anything by it."

Yuan looked at Copper and saw that she looked to be feeling foolish and she supposed that it she had spent her life wanting to meet someone and then finally did, a little suddenly, she could see herself saying something stupid too.

She smiled, "It's alright, Copper. Like this, I am closer to what people here think of as dragons, only smaller, but as I was then, I am like creatures which were here and died away long before there were any humans. Inside me, I am really not like those ones were at all. I am a dragon male like that as well, like my mother's kind. As far as I know, I am the last true dragon left, and I am not even true, since I am part human. Why do you ask?"

"Well it's nothing, really," Copper said, trying to concentrate on driving, "I had a dream once when I was a little girl. It was so real to me. I guess that, like a lot of girls, I kind of had these romantic fairy-tale sorts of dreams, but that one was so vivid to me, I've never forgotten it. I asked my parents about the creature in my dream and they said that it was a dragon. After that, I began to try to learn everything that I could about them - uh, you," she said as she corrected herself.

What Copper was not saying was that there hadn't only been the one dream and unlike most girls who had the classic fairy-tale dreams, she was not at all interested in the knight in shining armor. She'd had other dreams now and then and as she'd grown into adolescence, those dreams remained very vivid to her, but the nature of them became even less of the fairy-tale -- though some of that aspect always remained -- and more of a fantasy, really. By the time that she'd gotten to be about nineteen, the dreams had become her very favorite sexual fantasies.

Copper wanted to see more of Yuan now, but she was also very puzzled, since what she'd seen was a rather beautiful female to her way of looking at things. Well, the things that she'd seen on Yuan anyway, she reminded herself. She wondered how it would feel to touch her skin for a moment, but her reverie was broken by Yuan's warning.

"We are very near now," she said, "but watch for the stream in the middle of the valley. Where it is wide, it is shallow, but in other places it is deep and fast."

"Do I have to cross it?" Copper asked, "I'd rather not if I don't have to. The last thing that I need is frozen tracks, and they'll freeze up quick at this temperature if I stop."

She saw that Yuan had no idea what she'd meant so she just smiled, "I'd rather not have to cross it if I don't have to. Besides, this looks like it's getting narrow here, and I'll need to turn this rig around to leave since I'm hauling my trailer. Where do we have to go?"

Yuan grabbed the little control and Copper watched in her monitor as the scene outside moved to the dwellings under the cliff.

"Well wouldja lookit that," she said, almost in a whisper into her boom microphone, "that looks like something that a bunch of dwarves might have made -- in an afternoon when they were all drunk out of their minds," she chuckled, "You mean, somebody actually lives there?"


Sheth had a place laid out in case Yuan returned with anyone. He didn't know if she would, he just knew that there was a possibility of it happening. He'd gotten a short piece of fairly straight wood and wrapped some bristly boar hide around it to make himself a bit of a scrub brush and with that and a little hot water out of the cascade, he'd scrubbed the floor there spotlessly clean. When it had dried, he'd laid out for furs for bedding and since he knew that there were very young ones involved, he'd done his best to make it cozy. He didn't know it for certain, but he had a feeling that little demons would need and like that.

Sheth was pleased as he looked at it. If Yuan didn't come back with anyone, he wanted to make love to her there. It was a ways from the heat of the fire and even farther from the steaming cascade and it was dark here.

He walked away then, thinking about whether he ought to go out and hunt to make sure that there was enough food. He just didn't want to do that without knowing if Yuan would come back with anyone. If she came back alone, there would likely be too much and he didn't want to waste anything. He pondered it as he walked, a little lost in thought.

That was when he found the opening.

Sheth stared at it, wondering how he hadn't seen it before. But then he saw that it was behind a thin wall of stone. Stepping through a little cautiously, he entered it and stopped when he saw the pair of eyes there as they regarded him.


Copper sat in the command position, peering at the monitor and moving the joystick around to sweep the camera back and forth along the ledge looking for Yuan.

A few minutes later, Yuan walked back out onto the ledge and Copper saw her through the monitor as she shrugged. She'd walked from one end of the ledge to the other calling, and she'd gone inside of several of the dwellings, but there was no one there. The main fire still burned low and from everything else that she saw, the Tarkoth must be out hunting, she decided.

She was about to just fly back to the others, but she had a thought then of what Copper had asked, and so she changed to become the large dragon as she stepped to the edge and spread her wings.

She took off and flew around the valley twice -- once climbing to see if she could spot the pair of mountain demons and then again as she descended to land not far off in the snow where she looked at the vehicle and its trailer for a moment before she reared up and changed back to the way that she'd been before.

Copper had watched the whole thing with her jaw in her lap, and she'd been careful to get this recorded. A dragon, she smirked to herself, a real-live male dragon right there. She would have added 'fire-breathing' as an adjective, but she didn't know if that part was true.

It didn't matter, she thought. She didn't think that she'd ever be able to live out her long-time fantasy, but that was alright, she guessed. She'd gotten a couple of minutes recorded and if nothing else, she had something to look at one dark night in her rolling home, buttoned up tight and idling while she frigged herself.

She lowered the ramp partway and the beautiful creature was back aboard. "I think that they must be out hunting," Yuan said with a shrug as Copper turned the whole rig around in a wide turn and began to motor back the way that they'd come. She noticed that Copper wasn't wearing her helmet now. She'd switched to wearing a headset herself while Yuan was looking for the Tarkroth pair. Yuan admired the wild reddish-blonde curls on the dwarf.

"It's just as well," Copper said, "Simmit is looking relieved, so I can see that she was starting to think that this wasn't a good idea from the start. Look, can you, um, ... can you take care of the twins for a couple of minutes? I'd like Simmit to come sit here with me. There's something that I want to say to her."

Yuan nodded and went back to tell Simmit, who looked reluctant, but she nodded.

The pair of little demons were just at the point of walking well, both of them finally, and Yuan sat with them trying to think of ways that she might keep them amused, but she needn't have worried. They sat looking at her with such wide little eyes, though they didn't look to be afraid of her and in a few moments, they were on her, hugging her as though they'd known her all along.

Their little spell worked like a charm on Yuan. They were so sweet; a pair of tiny boy-demons, as gray in color as their mother, but with shocks of very light blonde hair. She sat back on the bunk with her back against the inside wall, holding them carefully so that they wouldn't fall as the vehicle bumped and ground along. But her care was unwarranted for the most part. They were used to the motions of what they rode in and they were as agile as a couple of monkeys. They just looked thrilled to be able to giggle and laugh as they climbed all over Yuan or hung from the racks above her head.

"What were you going to do if they accepted her?" Copper said loudly over the sounds.

Yuan shrugged, "I would have told them that we would come back to be sure that they treated Simmit and her babies well. I know enough about her kind -- if she is at all like the Tarkroth. For a place to stay and be treated well by them, she'd have taken the role of the second female, and allowed herself to be bred again -- if the female could ever allow it."

Copper thought that she heard something in there and noticed the look on Yuan's face as she went on.

"I'd have said that if they hadn't been able to think of something else to do besides mate with each other or if they'd treated Simmit poorly, I'd take her back, telling them that she is fine to me and I would take care of her and her young. I can always use another female in my bed."

She looked at Simmit and though it had been something of a half-empty threat that Yuan would have used, she did like Simmit, and she knew that it could be done -- especially once she saw the shy way that the demon looked at her. Yuan could see that Simmit liked the idea at least a little, seeing the way that her boys had fallen in love with the dragon. She also saw the way that Simmit and Copper both looked at her and she knew what they were waiting for, so she sighed.

She felt a little foolish as she related a little of what her hope had been with the Tarkroth and how it had gone, and she went on to tell of the end of it and her sadness, " ... so I would have left them with a bit of an ultimatum. I think it is important that they mate and breed, since they are the last, but also, I wished for them to see what they both already knew -- that they might at some time need to really be a clan and not a couple. With Simmit and her little ones, that day would have begun now.

I would make it clear that Simmit would probably like to be bred again -- with the right male, and Billy is easily that one, though Beyl'eth will need to get her mouth off his prong long enough for that to happen."

"Billy?" Copper asked and Yuan nodded, "It is not his real name, but he came here very young and forgot his name."

"So they'd give Simmit a good home for herself and her brood?"

"It was my thought," Yuan smiled, "She is nice, and if they were good to her, she would soon be thankful enough to mate with him, maybe even both of them, from what I know of the female. But they are not there, so we waste our breath and I think that she would be happier with you, Copper. Did you fix whatever it was?"

Copper nodded, "Yeah, I finally got through to her. I told her that I want them to stay with me. I'd like that, though I know that I'd have to get myself past a few things, because Simmit is just so affectionate, so I asked her to stay and I said that I'd try not to be such a grumpy dwarf to her.

Besides," she grinned with a nod, "She's amazingly bright. It only took me a week to train her to drive this old tin can as well as I can. She only almost tipped the trailer once in a tight turn, and that was only because it was almost empty then."

Yuan stared, "Simmit can drive this?"

Simmit nodded a little proudly with a smile and Copper laughed, "Sure thing. Having her drive frees me up for other things. This here pig was meant for a crew of three. You stick around here long enough, and I'll have you trained in a heartbeat and you'll be gunning," she pointed to the chain gun.

"Give me a month and you can use this thing as your personal ride from the commander's chair there. I love to gun a lot more than sweat details anyway. I think I'd like it better if I could move from one place to another in here, making sure that I don't miss anything and to keep the old boar running well.

I guess that one of us has to make a choice," she nodded at Simmit. "If she stayed with you, how would that work?"

Yuan shrugged, liking where this was going suddenly, so she just spoke plainly, "Well if she chooses to go with me, then I would take her and her children back and keep them myself by making her my pet."

Copper's mouth fell open again, "So it's true then? Dragons do take pets?"

"We can," Yuan said, smiling at the little monsters who so enjoyed hugging her where she sat, "It is obviously not done much anymore since there are only three of us that I am aware of. But it was common once among dragons. It would have been a bit of an empty threat from me, but I suppose that I could take a pet. I don't know why anyone would want to be my pet, but it is possible. Do you know the way back from here?"

"Yeah," Copper said, smiling, "I just have to follow my own tracks in the snow. You don't have to sit back there anymore if you don't want to. There's a fold-down jump seat up front here."

Yuan came forward and sat down, switching places with a hopeful-looking Simmit who saw that there was a brighter future for her in this somewhere. She knew what she would have liked, but she'd let them come to their own decision.

Yuan sat next to Copper, liking this better. She wasn't that fond of having to speak with the headset on. Even though the machine roared and rumbled, she preferred to be near someone when she was talking with them.

"Why are you smiling so much?" Yuan asked.

"I don't know," Copper grinned, "I'm having fun trying to imagine what that would be like."

Yuan laughed, liking the way that Copper looked. It was a really nice change from looking at a grim helmet with the eyeshades pulled down.

"Now I see where you get your name," Yuan said, reaching to smooth out a little of the way that the dwarf's hair had been crushed by the helmet, "you are a lot better-looking without that pot. The name suits you well, and I still see no joke."

"Thank you," Copper replied, and she wasn't being the least bit superficial in her reply. If she ever heard things like that at all, it usually came from a drunken person, so she put no stock in it most times. She was a little surprised when it came to her that Yuan hadn't really been here long enough to learn how to be very disingenuous. "But what does that involve, being a dragon's pet?"

Yuan suddenly found herself a little glad that she'd shown herself when she'd made her return flight. She couldn't see anything of Copper but her rather lovely face, and she got a strong feeling from her that she had little if any interest in females. But that was alright, she supposed, and anyway, they seemed to get along and she wanted to learn more of this girl who was so different to her, driving around in some sort of rolling fortress.

She smirked, "Well, there's the having to do whatever I ask part, like when I want some warm food, and there are always the menial chores which need to be done, I guess, cleaning a little, though for dragons, neither of us appear to be very messy, not like what my mother was. Besides, I am the sort who cleans without really thinking anyway."

Yuan had a mischievous thought come to her and she decided to act on it, just out of fun. "And of course, the pet would have to do dirty little things with me whenever I wished for it, and fuck with me, of course. My home is very warm and I would want my pet to be naked most of the time there.

I'm pretty insistent on that part of things. But even so, the pet would have to be able to sit quietly and watch or sleep while I mated with the other dragon, since that would happen a lot as well. I might even wish for the pet to allow the other one to mate with her as well. It depends on my mood.

For that, the pet would get a place to sleep -- with me most nights -- and food, and longer life, since that is what dragons give to their pets as well, perhaps a few hundred years more. I make it all sound a little silly, but Dragons tend to love their pets very much and care for them deeply. it has always been our way. On this world, among my kind of dragon, we have almost always taken humans as our pets."

Copper almost lost the pretense of appearing mildly interested then, "But is that even possible? For a human to have sex with a dragon? Wouldn't that hurt or kill the human?"

"No," Yuan chuckled, as though the notion was a little absurd, "Most human females can take us, though perhaps not fully in depth, but dragons are not really beasts, even in the large shape that I have, and Copper, I am not a large dragon, even like that. We are not without feeling toward those that we care for. What would be the point in taking a pet only to skewer her to death? Pets are taken to love and cherish, not to harm in any way. Did you not ever have a pet?"

Copper nodded, "I used to have a rabbit, but my father got all drunked up and he spent the food money, so he killed my rabbit and we ate her. I cried for weeks."

"I am sorry," Yuan said, "I guess that I was looking for an example to compare to, and I have failed badly."

"It's alright, Yuan," Copper said quietly, "I know what you were trying to say."

There was silence then for a few moments as the armored vehicle rolled on. Finally, Yuan heard Copper as she spoke while being careful to keep her gaze on her instrument and her situational displays.

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